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Ps/2 keyboard works during boot up but will not work when windows is open!

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December 26, 2011 12:35:51 AM

Pentium IV running Windows XP SP-3 During boot up I can use the PS/2 attached keyboard to select normal or recover partition. Once Windows opens the PS/2 attached keyboard will not work but I can work using a USB attached keyboard. I believe this situation occurred by virtue of a virus attack.
December 27, 2011 12:49:51 AM

No responses so I'll take a stab.

(before we start) after a virus attack I personally would copy off data you need, reformat and reinstall from scratch. This repairs a lot of damage. If you can do this then ignore everything else in this post and try the reinstall.

(1) Many prebuilt XP systems (from HP, etc.) had custom keyboard drivers. Check the web site for your manufacturer and see if you can download their XP drivers for keyboard. When you install them you will force windows to refresh the keyboard drivers and this may fix.

(2) Using the USB keyboard, open device manager (google to find how) and look for yellow exclamation point devices. Delete ALL of them by highlighting and using the delete key. Delete all keyboard devices (HID devices). Delete anything that looks 'wrong'. Reboot. Windows will reinstall all the right drivers. Power down, install the PS2 keyboard and see if windows can find/install the XP PS2 keyboard drivers.
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December 27, 2011 2:02:52 AM

tsnor said:
No responses so I'll take a stab.

(before we start) after a virus attack I personally would copy off data you need, reformat and reinstall from scratch. This repairs a lot of damage. If you can do this then ignore everything else in this post and try the reinstall.

(1) Many prebuilt XP systems (from HP, etc.) had custom keyboard drivers. Check the web site for your manufacturer and see if you can download their XP drivers for keyboard. When you install them you will force windows to refresh the keyboard drivers and this may fix.

(2) Using the USB keyboard, open device manager (google to find how) and look for yellow exclamation point devices. Delete ALL of them by highlighting and using the delete key. Delete all keyboard devices (HID devices). Delete anything that looks 'wrong'. Reboot. Windows will reinstall all the right drivers. Power down, install the PS2 keyboard and see if windows can find/install the XP PS2 keyboard drivers.




Thanks!!! Worked just like it's supposed to and I now have my PS/2 keyboard and mouse working again. Now on to my other problem. The incident of the keyboard not working happened some time back. A few weeks ago I got hit with the XP Antivirus 2012 virus! I have it cleaned out now. Ran Dr. Web, Malwarebytes Anti-malware and SpyBot in succession in Safe Mode and all three came out fine. However, I have individual desktops set up for my wife and myself. I was working on mine when the virus hit and now cannot operate through that desktop. All icons either return the "Open With" window or "ERROR Application Not Found" message. I can get into the Control Panel and there I get a message: C:\Windows\system32\rundll32.exe Application not found.

The computer works just fine from my wife's desktop and I set up a new desktop for myself from which I am able to access all files.

One of the corrupted files was IEXPLORE.EXE. It was quarantined and deleted. I suspect it's absence may be my problem.

This is a HP Pentium A1010Y. I have made the recover Cd's and have them available. I am about as hesitant of using them as I am on editing the Registry! According to the HP manual I can use them in "Standard Recover" without affecting any data files I have created on the computer. The other option is to use them for a "Full System Recovery" which formats the hard drive and looses everything. Guidance would be greatly appreciated.
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Best solution

December 27, 2011 3:38:03 PM

You should use an anti-virus full time. "Microsoft security essentials" is free (google it) and runs on XP. Have it do a full scan of your system before you do anything else.

Now, before other repair actions do a full backup of your current system to an external USB drive. XP professional has backup, but the other versions don't so you may need to buy a utility like 'acronis' or maybe HP has an installed backup utility. Then explicitly move any files you know you want (music, photos, copy of registry, etc.) to the USB drive. Then unplug the USB drive. Do not plug it back in. Fighting virus damage sometimes spirals into total system software fails which would force you to format/wipe the disk and lose data. Do not plug it into another computer unless your are SURE that the computer has up to date antivirus protection, you may have backed up active viruses to the usb drive.

A virus does a lot of damage, some intentional and some by accident based on bugs in the virus. You can download a new copy of IE from Microsoft (google will find that too) to replace the quarantined one. If there are any other files in quarantine then google their names, find out what they are part of and download and reinstall.

You can try the standard recovery once you have a safe copy of your data. I haven't used the HP standard recovery before. There are some notes about where your data goes that make me think its doing more than just reinstalling windows.
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?cc=us&lc=en...
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00...

-skip the rest if you don't need a full system recovery-

If the standard restore leaves your system unstable, or if you just decide to skip to the full, destructive restore then good. This has the side benefit of fixing all the registry edits you've done and getting rid of all the debris that a system accumulates. However, A FULL SYSTEM RECOVERY kills everything back to original. All your photos, installed games, music, bookmarks, etc will be lost.

I've done HP full installs a number of times. You MUST get rid of any USB attached devices other than mouse and keyboard. If you've swapped video cards there is a chance that the recovery will fail. If necessary swap back in the old video card (doesn't amke sense, but I've had recovery fail on a new card, work on old). Remove any PCI cards (network adapters, sound, raid controllers, etc. ) that were not in the initial configuration. Ypu've already burned a set of CD/DVD recovery media. Make a second set after you do full recovery (the system forgets about the first set when you do a full recovery).

Once you do the full system recovery you must repetitively call windows update and reboot. Each time you call win update it'll load a new set of compatible changes. When you reboot you complete install of these changes and allow windows to install the next set. It can take hours on a fast connection to get back to current. Then make sure you have your antivirus running before you do anything else.

Once you are service current and running an anti-virus it's relatively safe to plug the USB drive in. Have your antivirus run a full/deep scan of the attached USB drive. Then start transferring over your files.
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December 27, 2011 3:55:58 PM

I recommend a completely new install of Windows after getting rid of the old partition completely.

If you have any important data on the drive, do like the previous poster said and copy it somewhere else and completely disconnect that drive first. You will plug it in and scan it thoroughly for viruses at the end of this process.

I know from experience how hard things can be to remove completely and how much damage can be done to a system in the process.

It is a standard government policy for many agencies to just blow everything away at the first sign of a virus and start over from scratch.

There are programs that can get installed called Rootkits that can hide themselves from everything you can do to reveal it and it can sit in the background until the person who now controls your PC decides what they want to do with it.

The safest bet is just blowing everything away. It is guaranteed to get rid of your problems completely if you have trusted re-install media. Trusted media matters because viruses can worm their way into your backups and load themselves again when you restore your backups.

I have personally seen restoration of backups fail for this reason in the past.

Once you get something in there, the best idea is just not to trust anything at all.

Anyway, that is just my 2 cents.

I would start over from just the windows CD, get rid of the old partitions, install completely new everything, do all critical and recommended windows updates (restart and install more updates until there aren't any of these kinds), then redo all drivers, then redo all programs, and then put the data drive back in and scan it thoroughly for malware with multiple programs and go from there.
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December 27, 2011 3:59:53 PM

tsnor said:
You should use an anti-virus full time. "Microsoft security essentials" is free (google it) and runs on XP. Have it do a full scan of your system before you do anything else.

Now, before other repair actions do a full backup of your current system to an external USB drive. XP professional has backup, but the other versions don't so you may need to buy a utility like 'acronis' or maybe HP has an installed backup utility. Then explicitly move any files you know you want (music, photos, copy of registry, etc.) to the USB drive. Then unplug the USB drive. Do not plug it back in. Fighting virus damage sometimes spirals into total system software fails which would force you to format/wipe the disk and lose data. Do not plug it into another computer unless your are SURE that the computer has up to date antivirus protection, you may have backed up active viruses to the usb drive.

A virus does a lot of damage, some intentional and some by accident based on bugs in the virus. You can download a new copy of IE from Microsoft (google will find that too) to replace the quarantined one. If there are any other files in quarantine then google their names, find out what they are part of and download and reinstall.

You can try the standard recovery once you have a safe copy of your data. I haven't used the HP standard recovery before. There are some notes about where your data goes that make me think its doing more than just reinstalling windows.
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?cc=us&lc=en...
http://h10025.www1.hp.com/ewfrf/wc/document?docname=c00...

-skip the rest if you don't need a full system recovery-

If the standard restore leaves your system unstable, or if you just decide to skip to the full, destructive restore then good. This has the side benefit of fixing all the registry edits you've done and getting rid of all the debris that a system accumulates. However, A FULL SYSTEM RECOVERY kills everything back to original. All your photos, installed games, music, bookmarks, etc will be lost.

I've done HP full installs a number of times. You MUST get rid of any USB attached devices other than mouse and keyboard. If you've swapped video cards there is a chance that the recovery will fail. If necessary swap back in the old video card (doesn't amke sense, but I've had recovery fail on a new card, work on old). Remove any PCI cards (network adapters, sound, raid controllers, etc. ) that were not in the initial configuration. Ypu've already burned a set of CD/DVD recovery media. Make a second set after you do full recovery (the system forgets about the first set when you do a full recovery).

Once you do the full system recovery you must repetitively call windows update and reboot. Each time you call win update it'll load a new set of compatible changes. When you reboot you complete install of these changes and allow windows to install the next set. It can take hours on a fast connection to get back to current. Then make sure you have your antivirus running before you do anything else.

Once you are service current and running an anti-virus it's relatively safe to plug the USB drive in. Have your antivirus run a full/deep scan of the attached USB drive. Then start transferring over your files.


Thank you so much for your response!

We are doing a delayed Christmas Celebration today so will not get this accomplished today.

I have been running McAfee AntiVirus full time however "something" got through it! You are the third person to recommend the MicroSoft Security Essentials. The other two being full time IT types of personnel which I suspect you are also. I did also run a full scan with McAfee yesterday morning and it came back clean also.

I have an external Seagate Drive on the system. It came with automatic backup software so I'm fixed there.

Again, thank you! I will post back after the next episode.
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December 27, 2011 4:03:53 PM

I want to stress that you cannot trust backups that were on any device that was connected to your computer.

The virus could potentially have wormed its way into them in case you tried to use them.

It is a risk you take if you are trying to restore from backups after you have been hit with a virus.
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December 27, 2011 4:07:18 PM

Raiddinn said:
I recommend a completely new install of Windows after getting rid of the old partition completely.

If you have any important data on the drive, do like the previous poster said and copy it somewhere else and completely disconnect that drive first. You will plug it in and scan it thoroughly for viruses at the end of this process.

I know from experience how hard things can be to remove completely and how much damage can be done to a system in the process.

It is a standard government policy for many agencies to just blow everything away at the first sign of a virus and start over from scratch.

There are programs that can get installed called Rootkits that can hide themselves from everything you can do to reveal it and it can sit in the background until the person who now controls your PC decides what they want to do with it.

The safest bet is just blowing everything away. It is guaranteed to get rid of your problems completely if you have trusted re-install media. Trusted media matters because viruses can worm their way into your backups and load themselves again when you restore your backups.

I have personally seen restoration of backups fail for this reason in the past.

Once you get something in there, the best idea is just not to trust anything at all.

Anyway, that is just my 2 cents.

I would start over from just the windows CD, get rid of the old partitions, install completely new everything, do all critical and recommended windows updates (restart and install more updates until there aren't any of these kinds), then redo all drivers, then redo all programs, and then put the data drive back in and scan it thoroughly for malware with multiple programs and go from there.


Thank you for your input. Seems I'm getting good advice. I'll have to lay out my software and see if I have everything needed to re-install! Many programs have been added over the years.
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December 27, 2011 4:22:24 PM

JHC81 said:
...You are the third person to recommend the MicroSoft Security Essentials...


Only because it's free. So people will actually use it. I use Norton on work PCs and switched from Norton to Microsoft for my home PCs -- even with 5packs, Norton was not cheap. If you were running McAfee you may have hit a new virus variant that none of the anti-virus would have helped with at the time you caught it. Since McAfee didn't block it before install it may have been running on your system for a long time before McAfee got signatures to detect it.

I would only run 1 antivirus at a time. They hook into windows pretty deep and assume anything else hooking in is malware so the two AV can have a fight leading to an unstable system. So stick with McAfee or switch to something else, but not both.

With McAfee you can download a bootable anti-virus scan. Download and burn this on a DIFFERENT computer, boot it and use it to scan your computer. This gives you a shot against the root kits Raiddin mentioned.
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December 31, 2011 11:11:01 PM

JHC81 said:
Thank you so much for your response!

We are doing a delayed Christmas Celebration today so will not get this accomplished today.

I have been running McAfee AntiVirus full time however "something" got through it! You are the third person to recommend the MicroSoft Security Essentials. The other two being full time IT types of personnel which I suspect you are also. I did also run a full scan with McAfee yesterday morning and it came back clean also.

I have an external Seagate Drive on the system. It came with automatic backup software so I'm fixed there.

Again, thank you! I will post back after the next episode.


Personally I would not trust Microsoft Security Essentials. I have had to re-install the OS on two computers now that were infected by that virus while being "protected" by Security Essentials. Even booting in safe mode and doing a full scan failed to show any trace of the virus. And Norton's Secure Eraser was even more useless with that virus so I don't know if their anti-virus would work any better.
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January 2, 2012 2:05:49 AM

tsnor said:
Only because it's free. So people will actually use it. I use Norton on work PCs and switched from Norton to Microsoft for my home PCs -- even with 5packs, Norton was not cheap. If you were running McAfee you may have hit a new virus variant that none of the anti-virus would have helped with at the time you caught it. Since McAfee didn't block it before install it may have been running on your system for a long time before McAfee got signatures to detect it.

I would only run 1 antivirus at a time. They hook into windows pretty deep and assume anything else hooking in is malware so the two AV can have a fight leading to an unstable system. So stick with McAfee or switch to something else, but not both.

With McAfee you can download a bootable anti-virus scan. Download and burn this on a DIFFERENT computer, boot it and use it to scan your computer. This gives you a shot against the root kits Raiddin mentioned.


Finally have the holidays out of the way and have done the Standard Recovery on my system. All looks good! Am still re-loading software. Some will not be re-loaded as I was debating taking it off anyway.

Certainly do appreciate the very good advice I received here!
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January 2, 2012 2:48:39 AM

mwryder55 said:
Personally I would not trust Microsoft Security Essentials. I have had to re-install the OS on two computers now that were infected by that virus while being "protected" by Security Essentials. Even booting in safe mode and doing a full scan failed to show any trace of the virus. And Norton's Secure Eraser was even more useless with that virus so I don't know if their anti-virus would work any better.



I wonder if there are any you really can trust! I was running McAfee and "it" got through! I did multiple scans to get rid of the problems. (I HOPE!) In Safe Mode, I ran Dr. Web, which seems to me to do the best job of all, Malwarebyte's Antimalware and SpyBot. Did full scans with all three in succession. My internet provider supplied McAfee with my Broadband connection. They have now stopped supporting it and are providing Norton, also free. I've had Norton in the past and did not like it so am in somewhat of a quandry as to what to do! The re-installation took care of the McAfee for me. I have a computer in another location on dial-up. I've used AVG-free in it for about 10 years with no problems but figure that may be because of the dial-up. At the moment I have downloaded Microsoft Security Essentials. Thanks for your input.
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January 7, 2012 4:09:29 AM

Nothing will protect you 100% from viruses or spyware. It takes a solid anti-virus AND anti-spyware software to get decent protection. The rest comes from avoiding websites that have these viruses in them, downloading suspicious files, and to stop trusting that hobo down the street from using it.

Education and caution are your best friends. I don't run my anti-virus or anti-spyware protection 24/7 due to how much RAM they eat, but when I activate them now and again to run deep full system scans I am always clean.

Also keep in mind that some viruses can disable your protection software, or embed itself so deeply that you have to manually remove the virus yourself (which involves a long, difficult processor and endangers your computer to you making a fatal mistake in the process).
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January 7, 2012 12:48:43 PM

phyco126 said:
Nothing will protect you 100% from viruses or spyware. It takes a solid anti-virus AND anti-spyware software to get decent protection. The rest comes from avoiding websites that have these viruses in them, downloading suspicious files, and to stop trusting that hobo down the street from using it.

Education and caution are your best friends. I don't run my anti-virus or anti-spyware protection 24/7 due to how much RAM they eat, but when I activate them now and again to run deep full system scans I am always clean.

Also keep in mind that some viruses can disable your protection software, or embed itself so deeply that you have to manually remove the virus yourself (which involves a long, difficult processor and endangers your computer to you making a fatal mistake in the process).


Thanks for your input. What you say is all true. However I cannot imagine not running my protection software full time. I was surprised at how deep the virus penetrated. I had to reload my operating system and actually had to get into manual editing of my Register! Fortunately a Standard Restore did the job so I did not loose my data files. I am still running across programs which will not work and have to be re-installed. One of my favorite photo editing softwares is gone and so far I have not located the disk to re-load it.

It's quite an experience and it looks as if I get more! My daughter phoned last night and it sounds as if her computer has been infected! At least this time I will be more comfortable!
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January 7, 2012 6:54:42 PM

My computer is aging, and I dislike how slow running protection all the time makes it. I mean, its not noticeably slow anywhere other than start-up (it adds like, 30 seconds to the time). But the biggest thing is that it eats my RAM for breakfast. I have 8 GB of RAM, and with the protection running RAM usage hits nearly 3 GB. Without it running, it only hits 1.7 GB max (unless I'm multitasking). Eh, maybe I'm just a 'fraidy cat.

New computer will run the protection 24/7, if I can ever scrap up the money to build it...

By the way, back-up back-up back-up! I can never stress this enough to back up your most important files. Storage is cheap. I always back up, in this order: photos, word/excel documents, songs, everything else. I have two HDDs that I back these up to. Photos and songs twice a year get backed up to an offsite location, and word documents get backed up to thumb-drive. So barring a tornado/apocolypse, my stuff is relatively safe (though it stands to reason to lose a few months worth of pictures and stuff, but better than losing 8 years worth of family photos).
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January 7, 2012 11:36:50 PM

Best answer selected by JHC81.
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