Windows Shell Problem ?

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

MAJOR WINXP Problem !
After starting up my PC yesterday, I have been unable to run any
applications or anything with an .exe extension. Icons have become standard
windows icons and when I click on them Windows says that it cannot identify
the program that the .lnk file was created by and invites me to search the
web or browse to identify the file. Neither of these options work. If I go
straight to the program folder and click the.exe file in question then the
same occurs. If however I double click on , say, an Office document the the
document and program will open and be usable.
I have tried the following
Running XP Restore and MSconfig- neither will run from fully loaded Windows
(the .exe problem)
Re-starting in Safe Mode and using Last Known Good Configuration with no
improvement
Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Restore. Restore
appears to work until it restarts the PC and the says Rstrui.exe cannot be
found
Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running MS config.exe. This
runs but there is no obvious problem and so the situation doesn't change when
I start
Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Windows Installation
Disk to re-install. This will not start when I select the "Install windows"
option.
I am able to connect to the internet using the network connections panel and
clicking "connect". Internet Explorer is fully functional and the icon is
correct on the desktop
I can see all folders and documents. All icons are correct except, I think,
for .exe and .dll files
I'd be really grateful if you could help me sort this mess out.
8 answers Last reply
More about windows shell problem
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    Use method 2 in this article.

    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315341

    --
    Regards,

    Dave Patrick ....Please no email replies - reply in newsgroup.
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    http://www.microsoft.com/protect

    "Pelham" wrote:
    | MAJOR WINXP Problem !
    | After starting up my PC yesterday, I have been unable to run any
    | applications or anything with an .exe extension. Icons have become
    standard
    | windows icons and when I click on them Windows says that it cannot
    identify
    | the program that the .lnk file was created by and invites me to search the
    | web or browse to identify the file. Neither of these options work. If I go
    | straight to the program folder and click the.exe file in question then the
    | same occurs. If however I double click on , say, an Office document the
    the
    | document and program will open and be usable.
    | I have tried the following
    | Running XP Restore and MSconfig- neither will run from fully loaded
    Windows
    | (the .exe problem)
    | Re-starting in Safe Mode and using Last Known Good Configuration with no
    | improvement
    | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Restore. Restore
    | appears to work until it restarts the PC and the says Rstrui.exe cannot be
    | found
    | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running MS config.exe. This
    | runs but there is no obvious problem and so the situation doesn't change
    when
    | I start
    | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Windows
    Installation
    | Disk to re-install. This will not start when I select the "Install
    windows"
    | option.
    | I am able to connect to the internet using the network connections panel
    and
    | clicking "connect". Internet Explorer is fully functional and the icon is
    | correct on the desktop
    | I can see all folders and documents. All icons are correct except, I
    think,
    | for .exe and .dll files
    | I'd be really grateful if you could help me sort this mess out.
    |
    |
    |
    |
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    Thanks. Sounds hopeful. I did try to boot from CD earlier on but got no
    reaction. In the Bios set-up I promoted the CD Drive ahead of the hard disk
    but it still went to the hard disk. I couldn't see anything else, was that
    all that was needed?
    Thanks

    "Dave Patrick" wrote:

    > Use method 2 in this article.
    >
    > http://support.microsoft.com/kb/315341
    >
    > --
    > Regards,
    >
    > Dave Patrick ....Please no email replies - reply in newsgroup.
    > Microsoft Certified Professional
    > Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    > http://www.microsoft.com/protect
    >
    > "Pelham" wrote:
    > | MAJOR WINXP Problem !
    > | After starting up my PC yesterday, I have been unable to run any
    > | applications or anything with an .exe extension. Icons have become
    > standard
    > | windows icons and when I click on them Windows says that it cannot
    > identify
    > | the program that the .lnk file was created by and invites me to search the
    > | web or browse to identify the file. Neither of these options work. If I go
    > | straight to the program folder and click the.exe file in question then the
    > | same occurs. If however I double click on , say, an Office document the
    > the
    > | document and program will open and be usable.
    > | I have tried the following
    > | Running XP Restore and MSconfig- neither will run from fully loaded
    > Windows
    > | (the .exe problem)
    > | Re-starting in Safe Mode and using Last Known Good Configuration with no
    > | improvement
    > | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Restore. Restore
    > | appears to work until it restarts the PC and the says Rstrui.exe cannot be
    > | found
    > | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running MS config.exe. This
    > | runs but there is no obvious problem and so the situation doesn't change
    > when
    > | I start
    > | Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Windows
    > Installation
    > | Disk to re-install. This will not start when I select the "Install
    > windows"
    > | option.
    > | I am able to connect to the internet using the network connections panel
    > and
    > | clicking "connect". Internet Explorer is fully functional and the icon is
    > | correct on the desktop
    > | I can see all folders and documents. All icons are correct except, I
    > think,
    > | for .exe and .dll files
    > | I'd be really grateful if you could help me sort this mess out.
    > |
    > |
    > |
    > |
    >
    >
    >
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    Even though you set the boot order to CD-Rom first some bios (I know Dell
    does this) requires you to hit F2 (or some other key) to boot from CD-Rom at
    POST

    --
    Regards,

    Dave Patrick ....Please no email replies - reply in newsgroup.
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    http://www.microsoft.com/protect

    "Pelham" wrote:
    | Thanks. Sounds hopeful. I did try to boot from CD earlier on but got no
    | reaction. In the Bios set-up I promoted the CD Drive ahead of the hard
    disk
    | but it still went to the hard disk. I couldn't see anything else, was that
    | all that was needed?
    | Thanks
  4. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    I hope you get an answer to this, because I have the same problem on my
    desktop. I posted to this group about it , but all I got was that I should
    reinstall/repair XP - which, as you have found out, won't work. Other than
    that, no one else has offered any kind of constructive advice.


    Pelham wrote:
    > MAJOR WINXP Problem !
    > After starting up my PC yesterday, I have been unable to run any
    > applications or anything with an .exe extension. Icons have become
    > standard windows icons and when I click on them Windows says that it
    > cannot identify the program that the .lnk file was created by and
    > invites me to search the web or browse to identify the file. Neither
    > of these options work. If I go straight to the program folder and
    > click the.exe file in question then the same occurs. If however I
    > double click on , say, an Office document the the document and
    > program will open and be usable.
    > I have tried the following
    > Running XP Restore and MSconfig- neither will run from fully loaded
    > Windows (the .exe problem)
    > Re-starting in Safe Mode and using Last Known Good Configuration with
    > no improvement
    > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Restore.
    > Restore appears to work until it restarts the PC and the says
    > Rstrui.exe cannot be found
    > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running MS config.exe.
    > This runs but there is no obvious problem and so the situation
    > doesn't change when I start
    > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Windows
    > Installation Disk to re-install. This will not start when I select
    > the "Install windows" option.
    > I am able to connect to the internet using the network connections
    > panel and clicking "connect". Internet Explorer is fully functional
    > and the icon is correct on the desktop
    > I can see all folders and documents. All icons are correct except, I
    > think, for .exe and .dll files
    > I'd be really grateful if you could help me sort this mess out.
  5. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    Do you use Lavasoft "Ad Aware" ? I think that may be part of the cause- but
    unfortunately not part of the solution. Let's hope we get an answer soon

    "John Smith" wrote:

    > I hope you get an answer to this, because I have the same problem on my
    > desktop. I posted to this group about it , but all I got was that I should
    > reinstall/repair XP - which, as you have found out, won't work. Other than
    > that, no one else has offered any kind of constructive advice.
    >
    >
    > Pelham wrote:
    > > MAJOR WINXP Problem !
    > > After starting up my PC yesterday, I have been unable to run any
    > > applications or anything with an .exe extension. Icons have become
    > > standard windows icons and when I click on them Windows says that it
    > > cannot identify the program that the .lnk file was created by and
    > > invites me to search the web or browse to identify the file. Neither
    > > of these options work. If I go straight to the program folder and
    > > click the.exe file in question then the same occurs. If however I
    > > double click on , say, an Office document the the document and
    > > program will open and be usable.
    > > I have tried the following
    > > Running XP Restore and MSconfig- neither will run from fully loaded
    > > Windows (the .exe problem)
    > > Re-starting in Safe Mode and using Last Known Good Configuration with
    > > no improvement
    > > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Restore.
    > > Restore appears to work until it restarts the PC and the says
    > > Rstrui.exe cannot be found
    > > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running MS config.exe.
    > > This runs but there is no obvious problem and so the situation
    > > doesn't change when I start
    > > Re-starting in Safe Mode with command line and running Windows
    > > Installation Disk to re-install. This will not start when I select
    > > the "Install windows" option.
    > > I am able to connect to the internet using the network connections
    > > panel and clicking "connect". Internet Explorer is fully functional
    > > and the icon is correct on the desktop
    > > I can see all folders and documents. All icons are correct except, I
    > > think, for .exe and .dll files
    > > I'd be really grateful if you could help me sort this mess out.
    >
    >
    >
  6. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    On Sat, 11 Dec 2004 09:22:52 -0500, "John Smith" <uh-uh@nowhere.com>

    >I hope you get an answer to this, because I have the same problem on my
    >desktop. I posted to this group about it , but all I got was that I should
    >reinstall/repair XP - which, as you have found out, won't work. Other than
    >that, no one else has offered any kind of constructive advice.

    Do a formal virus scan - you may have an exefile association stealer
    on your hands; a tactic popular when RATs were going large.

    Within the registry are two branches that affect file associations
    (what happens when files of various types are "opened"). These are
    combined as HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT when viewed via RegEdit.

    The linkage is usually in two parts. First there's the .ext (in this
    case, .exe) that points to an aggregate file type (in this case,
    should be exefile). Then the aggregate defines what program is to be
    used to run that file. Now an .exe should run itself, via this line:

    "%1" %*

    That means, "run yourself and whatever parameters were thrown at you".

    If you see something like this...

    C:\eyykjq.exe "%1" %*

    ....then there's a hostile .EXE that's now patched in to run before any
    ..exe you try to run, which allows the malware to get "air superiority"
    from which it can strike down attempts to clean it.

    If the malware file's deleted, without cleaning up this registry
    intrusion, you may find no .EXE run - because the program "needed" to
    run them is no longer there.

    If you opted for NTFS because it was "more secure", well, this is
    where you get stuck with the booby prize. Off you go to...

    http://cquirke.mvps.org/whatmos.htm

    ....where you will try to find something that can formally (i.e.
    without running the malware first) scan and fix the PC. Trend have a
    good free cleaner; it catches more than Stinger, and can be used from
    "Safe Command Only" (which isn't safe enough for everything).

    If you're on FAT32, then it's easier - you can at least boot from a
    DOS mode diskette and run one/all of these free (F-Prot) or
    free-for-evaluation DOS-based av:

    www.f-prot.com
    www.nod32.com
    www.sophos.com

    First, scan but don't clean and save the log of what is found.
    Research what you find for caveats; there may be traps that the wrong
    clean-up method could fall into. The clean as you can.

    Once cleaned, you can turn to getting .exe files to work again. That
    can be easy if the malware just grabbed .exe -> exefile (typically as
    I described, via patch-in to exefile's action). Or it can be harder,
    if the malware does things I won't elaborate on right now.

    The usual fix is to manually repair the association via Regedit, and
    if you can't run Regedit (it's an .EXE, right?) then you copy
    Regedit.exe to SomeName.xxx, where xxx can be bat, com, cpl, pif etc.

    If that doesn't work - and that can happen - then retry from other
    user accounts (safe Mode is the first thing to try). If no joy, say
    so in your reply and we'll se if we can out-medieval the beast.


    >-------------------- ----- ---- --- -- - - - -
    Running Windows-based av to kill active malware is like striking
    a match to see if what you are standing in is water or petrol.
    >-------------------- ----- ---- --- -- - - - -
  7. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    >> if you can't run Regedit (it's an .EXE, right?) then you copy Regedit.exe to SomeName.xxx, where xxx can be bat, com, cpl, pif etc.

    Or, using RunAs from Command.

    Example: "RUNAS /USER:Administrator C:\windows\regedit.exe"

    Type-in the credentials.

    --
    Ramesh, Microsoft MVP
    Windows XP Shell/User
    http://windowsxp.mvps.org


    "cquirke (MVP Win9x)" <cquirkenews@nospam.mvps.org> wrote in message news:ot1nr090vcnhbpqbs4p9gm7jefd698cifr@4ax.com...
    On Sat, 11 Dec 2004 09:22:52 -0500, "John Smith" <uh-uh@nowhere.com>

    >I hope you get an answer to this, because I have the same problem on my
    >desktop. I posted to this group about it , but all I got was that I should
    >reinstall/repair XP - which, as you have found out, won't work. Other than
    >that, no one else has offered any kind of constructive advice.

    Do a formal virus scan - you may have an exefile association stealer
    on your hands; a tactic popular when RATs were going large.

    Within the registry are two branches that affect file associations
    (what happens when files of various types are "opened"). These are
    combined as HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT when viewed via RegEdit.

    The linkage is usually in two parts. First there's the .ext (in this
    case, .exe) that points to an aggregate file type (in this case,
    should be exefile). Then the aggregate defines what program is to be
    used to run that file. Now an .exe should run itself, via this line:

    "%1" %*

    That means, "run yourself and whatever parameters were thrown at you".

    If you see something like this...

    C:\eyykjq.exe "%1" %*

    ....then there's a hostile .EXE that's now patched in to run before any
    ..exe you try to run, which allows the malware to get "air superiority"
    from which it can strike down attempts to clean it.

    If the malware file's deleted, without cleaning up this registry
    intrusion, you may find no .EXE run - because the program "needed" to
    run them is no longer there.

    If you opted for NTFS because it was "more secure", well, this is
    where you get stuck with the booby prize. Off you go to...

    http://cquirke.mvps.org/whatmos.htm

    ....where you will try to find something that can formally (i.e.
    without running the malware first) scan and fix the PC. Trend have a
    good free cleaner; it catches more than Stinger, and can be used from
    "Safe Command Only" (which isn't safe enough for everything).

    If you're on FAT32, then it's easier - you can at least boot from a
    DOS mode diskette and run one/all of these free (F-Prot) or
    free-for-evaluation DOS-based av:

    www.f-prot.com
    www.nod32.com
    www.sophos.com

    First, scan but don't clean and save the log of what is found.
    Research what you find for caveats; there may be traps that the wrong
    clean-up method could fall into. The clean as you can.

    Once cleaned, you can turn to getting .exe files to work again. That
    can be easy if the malware just grabbed .exe -> exefile (typically as
    I described, via patch-in to exefile's action). Or it can be harder,
    if the malware does things I won't elaborate on right now.

    The usual fix is to manually repair the association via Regedit, and
    if you can't run Regedit (it's an .EXE, right?) then you copy
    Regedit.exe to SomeName.xxx, where xxx can be bat, com, cpl, pif etc.

    If that doesn't work - and that can happen - then retry from other
    user accounts (safe Mode is the first thing to try). If no joy, say
    so in your reply and we'll se if we can out-medieval the beast.


    >-------------------- ----- ---- --- -- - - - -
    Running Windows-based av to kill active malware is like striking
    a match to see if what you are standing in is water or petrol.
    >-------------------- ----- ---- --- -- - - - -
  8. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.perform_maintain (More info?)

    Click Start, Run and type Command
    Type the following and then press Enter after typing each one:

    cd\windows
    regedit

    --
    Ramesh, Microsoft MVP
    Windows XP Shell/User
    http://windowsxp.mvps.org


    "Ramesh [MVP]" <ramesh@nojunkmails.com@mvps.org> wrote in message news:%23DW6VDH4EHA.2592@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
    >> if you can't run Regedit (it's an .EXE, right?) then you copy Regedit.exe to SomeName.xxx, where xxx can be bat, com, cpl, pif etc.

    Or, using RunAs from Command.

    Example: "RUNAS /USER:Administrator C:\windows\regedit.exe"

    Type-in the credentials.

    --
    Ramesh, Microsoft MVP
    Windows XP Shell/User
    http://windowsxp.mvps.org


    <snip>
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