once again a windows installer problem Results

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You might try downloading the application accelerator from intel
for the ICH5 controller,it includes drivers/software for ICH5,not the
older 2.3 version,this one is for raid,and/or ICH5 only.Also,did you
install drivers by booting to xp cd,then pressing F6.Even though you
dont have an "Intel" board,intel makes up most of it,try thier web site

"Michael" wrote:

I conisider myself very technically competent, but this
problem has me completely stumped. I can't find any info
about it in a search of Google or of this forum. Here's my
complete system info:

Windows XP Home (with SP 1)
Aspire X-Superalien case with the Aspire 500w PS
Intel P4 2.8C Northwood (800MHz FSB)
2Gb Corsair TwinX 3200 RAM (4 X 512) (Page File turned off)
MSI GeForceFX 5900XT Video Card
Turtle Beach Santa Cruz Sound Card
LiteOn 52X24X52 CDRW
Hitachi 40X DVD ROM
Miscrosoft Wireless Desktop Elite Mouse & KB
DELL 2001FP Monitor

And here's what I just changed yesterday that started the

I installed a new Hitachi 160Gb SATA HD, but only as
additional storage, not as part of a RAID setup. I
connected it to the onboard Promise SATA controller. It
installed and formatted just fine and shows up correctly
in Windows Explorer. I have already moved about 30Gb of
files to it. The files transfered quickly as expected.

But here's the problem: Each time I start the computer,
then open Windows Explorer, there's a REALLY LONG delay
expanding any of the folders for that new drive (and ONLY
that drive - the other drives are not affected). The delay
is always at least 30 seconds but it's usually closer to 2
minutes!! Once each folder has been expanded once, it will
open quickly from then on, even if I close Windows
Explorer then come back later. But if I reboot, I have the
same delay expanding the folders again.

Things I've tried or verified:
1. Hitachi Drive Fitness Test veries the drive is OK.
2. All BIOS settings are correct, and I've even
experimented with some of them just to be sure.
3. The computer is free of viruses or adware.
4. There are no corrupt files on the new drive.
5. All connections are correct and tight. I also tried
another cable.
6. The Promise driver is loaded and working.
7. The drive has been defragged.
8. I've turned off the "Indexing Service".
9. DMA is enabled.
10. I also used the ICH5 SATA controller and had the same

I hope one of you has a bright idea that I've missed.


I've been having this problem for about a week now. There are two
computers on the LAN at home that are experiencing this.

Periodically, sometimes every 5-10 minutes, sometimes every 45
minutes, or hour or two, a WinXP machine seems to "lose" it's network

I typically see two variations on this:

1) The machine will simply have no network abaility at all. ipconfig
reveals an IP in the 192.168.xxx.xxx range. When this happens nothing
network related will work, I cannot even access my local Perforce
server (which is running on the same computer.)

2) ipconfig will reveal an IP in the 169.254.xxx.xxx range.
Previously, the machine would have been in the 192.168.0.xxx range
having received it's IP through the routers DHCP mechanism. I
understand the 169.254.xxx.xxx range is part of the automatic private
IP addressing feature. I don't understand why all of a sudden winXP
"loses" it's perfectly normal ip address and switches to this.

Sometimes when I notice the network connection has died, and ipconfig
still reports my 192.168.x.x IP address, I can then run ipconfig
/release to release my IP, but when I run ipconfig /renew, I get this
message "An error occured while renewing interface Network Bridge
(Network Bridge) : No connection could be nade because the target
machine actively refused it.

Now for the details:

-When it happens, sometimes unplugging the router and plugging it back
in will cause the computer to behave properly again, and it's 192....
IP address is restored.
-I first noticed this when using the D-Link DI-514 wireless router
with both computers connected to it via the wired ports (wireless was
for a tivo)
-I have since returned the D-Link router for unrelated reasons, and
have setup a Netgear RP614v2 wired router (no wireless). I have the
same problems with
this router. Thet netgear routers firmware is 5.13 (which is old, but
I'm waiting to see if this is a windows problem before getting into
firmware upgrades)
-My main computer that is having these problems is using a year old
WinXP Pro install with SP1, and all but 1 security update (the latest,
haven't bothered
until I get this sorted out)
-I have recently done a fresh install on a new 160GB drive (using
removable drive bays), and have similar problems on the fresh install.
-The other computer at home is also a fresh install of WinXP pro on a
new 160GB drive.
-Both new installs have all of the latest critical updates, but do not
have all of the WinXP fluff updates (Media player 9, etc...)

In the Network Connections folder, I see the following: (entries are
in the format -Name - Status - Device Name)

==LAN or High-SPeed Internet==
-1394 COnnection 2 - Enabled - 1394 Net Adapter #2

==Network Bridge==
-1394 COnnection - Enabled, Bridged - 1394 Net Adapter
-Network Bridge( Network Bridge ) - Enabled - MAC Bridge Miniport
-Local Area Connection - Enabled, Bridged - Intel(R) Pro/1000 CT
Nework Cnnection

Both systems are running ZoneAlarm. I disabled ZA's "launch on
startup" feature on one machine, shutdown, restarted, and still had
the same problem.
Zonealarm has as a trusted zone.

Both systems are setup to use automatic IP assignment via DHCP. The
router is configured to perform DHCP.

I have also run the Network Diagnostics from Help & Support, and
everything reports as "passed" when my machine is connected. Once I
lose my connection, the diagnostic reports FAILED for a network
adapter identified as [00000011] MAC Bridge Miniport and lists FAILED
for the DNSServerSearchOrder inside it.

Does anyone have any suggestions or advice?

I bought a new computer with windows xp home edition installed on it. I have windows xp professional CD at home. I installed the windows xp professional. When I installed xp professional I have selected the "upgrade" instead of the "install" option as it
should be. It installed xp professional with no problem. Once I finish installing I tried to use my internet that was working on the xp home edition. I was not able to connect. I then tried to make a new connection to re-install my internet. However, some
of the options such as the "dial-up connection" are reccessed (grayed) and are not accessible to select. I did not know what to look for. I took back the computer to the store where I bought it and the technician put a recovery disk of home edition. Then
the dial-up option was accessible in home edition. Then With the hope the problem might be solved I re-installed the Xp professional edition and the dail-up option was again grayed and could not connect to th internet. I put the recovery disk again and I a
m using the home edition now. My computer has visual studio.net, SQL server, visio.net. I am trying to avoid uninstalling all these programs to do the clean install.
Can any one help me how I can upgrade the xp home edition to windows xp professional without facing this internet connection problem?
Your help is very much appreciated.

After installing SP2 from a CD-rom I acquired fron Microsoft my computer
boots up properly as before but once I am in the XP operating system the
following problems occur:

1. My mouse operates erratically (pointer hangs up and does not respond for
about 30 seconds and then pointer jumps to where I positioned it).
2. The computer eventually stops responding (hangs) within 3 minutes of
problem start.
3. I cannot shut down or restart computer from Start menu and
control/alt/delete does not work
4. I have to use reset button to get computer to restart. Upon restart
Windows XP reloads as if I shut it down normally but hangs up at black
screen/mouse pointer.
5. Once again I have to hit reset to restart and Windows screen comes up as
if windows was not shut down correctly and offers option of safe mode. If I
select safe mode screen goes to safe mode but freezes up again.
6. I then have to reset and shut off computer completely with on/off switch.
7. After about 1/2 hour if I turn off computer windows loads normally as if
nothing has happened but problen arises again randomly throughout day.

My system consists of:

NVIDIA GeForce MX 4000 display card
MICROSOFT Natural PS2 Keyboard
MAUDIO DELTA 24/96 SOUND CARD (with the latest updated XP drivers installed)

In the last month since problem began I replaced:
VIDEO CARD (original was ATI 9600XT)
sound card (soundmax ac97)

with no improvement or resolution of problem.
My comnputer worked for 2 years prior with no problems.

The only change made before problems started was the installation of SP2.

Any assistance and/or troubleshooting/insight of this issue would be
greatly appreciated as I am at a loss as to what could be happening.

I conisider myself very technically competent, but this
problem has me completely stumped. I can't find any info
about it in a search of Google or of this forum. Here's my
complete system info:

Windows XP Home (with SP 1)
Aspire X-Superalien case with the Aspire 500w PS
Intel P4 2.8C Northwood (800MHz FSB)
2Gb Corsair TwinX 3200 RAM (4 X 512) (Page File turned off)
MSI GeForceFX 5900XT Video Card
Turtle Beach Santa Cruz Sound Card
LiteOn 52X24X52 CDRW
Hitachi 40X DVD ROM
Miscrosoft Wireless Desktop Elite Mouse & KB
DELL 2001FP Monitor

And here's what I just changed yesterday that started the

I installed a new Hitachi 160Gb SATA HD, but only as
additional storage, not as part of a RAID setup. I
connected it to the onboard Promise SATA controller. It
installed and formatted just fine and shows up correctly
in Windows Explorer. I have already moved about 30Gb of
files to it. The files transfered quickly as expected.

But here's the problem: Each time I start the computer,
then open Windows Explorer, there's a REALLY LONG delay
expanding any of the folders for that new drive (and ONLY
that drive - the other drives are not affected). The delay
is always at least 30 seconds but it's usually closer to 2
minutes!! Once each folder has been expanded once, it will
open quickly from then on, even if I close Windows
Explorer then come back later. But if I reboot, I have the
same delay expanding the folders again.

Things I've tried or verified:
1. Hitachi Drive Fitness Test veries the drive is OK.
2. All BIOS settings are correct, and I've even
experimented with some of them just to be sure.
3. The computer is free of viruses or adware.
4. There are no corrupt files on the new drive.
5. All connections are correct and tight. I also tried
another cable.
6. The Promise driver is loaded and working.
7. The drive has been defragged.
8. I've turned off the "Indexing Service".
9. DMA is enabled.
10. I also used the ICH5 SATA controller and had the same

I hope one of you has a bright idea that I've missed.


Ahh a former military man, that explains a lot of his drivel.


"jupiter is a man ^^^^^^^^^" wrote in
message ...

-----Original Message-----
On what do you base this on:
"SP2a sound like a much better choice which should be here
by Xmas."
The likelihood of that happening is almost nonexistent and
without precedent other than these 2:
1. A Service Pack for NT with far greater problems than
Windows SP-2.
2. Windows XP SP-1a released as part of a court
settlement with Sun.
Microsoft Virtual Machine was removed from SP-1 changing
it to SP-1a.
NOTHING else was changed even though there were numerous
fixes already

Since SP-2 is 2, it is not the first release, SP-1 was.
If you wait for an update of SP-2, you will most likely
wait forever
since the most likely event is SP-3 in a year or two.

Instead research and prepare your computer:

Or you can wait forever...your choice.

Jupiter Jones [MVP]

"M$" wrote in message
Well that goes to show once again - NEVER INSTALL the
first release

In 13 years I have never seen or heard of a good reason
for doing
so. While
SP2 may have some needed fixes, it is NEVER so critical
that it
cannot wait
a while till the major bugs are worked out. A set of
good practices
common sense will go farther then any SP ever will in
your PC.
What are the folks doing that have W2k, Win98, Me, etc.?
No, the sky
is not
falling! SP2a sound like a much better choice which
should be here
by Xmas.

"Jim" wrote in message
How bout helping me with my problems. Countless people
are having
with this "virus" called "SP2", and a few people
employees) say it so great.

Well this will make the third time I've posted about
this, so far
no help!

Here's my problem:

Installed service pack 2.

It wiped out my settings in "Outlook Express."
The Account, POP Server and SMTP Server info were
gone. I
Now my previously read mail, address book contacts,
etc, are gone.
now I'm not receiving any new mail.

How can I get it back? I REALLY, REALLY need to
recover some of
the mail.
Unfortunately for some reason, my System Restore was
turned off.

Thanks - Jim


Outgoing mail is certified Virus Free.
Checked by AVG anti-virus system (http://www.grisoft.com).
Version: 6.0.754 / Virus Database: 504 - Release Date: 9/6/2004

I lost count of how long I have waited for SP2, because I was told that it
would address my voice problems, and many others too, I am not alone.

OK. SP2 now installed. Trying once again. Here is the deal, when trying to
talk with a friend, I can hear him, my meter moves for me when I talk, but he
cannot hear me (both in California about 90 miles apart). Trying with another
friend, she accepts, I see "connecting to so & so", and it never completes the
connection, saying the remote computer is experiencing problems after it
eventually aborts. (She cross country).

I am behind a Netgear router. My 1st friend who cannot hear me & I hear him,
is also behind a Netgear router. My second friend who we cannot even connect
voice, I do not think is behind a router, but I could be mistaken.

Also I've tried Windows Messenger with the 1st friend too, (he still using
MSN) and get the "connecting to so & so", but it never does connect voice and
eventually aborts.

Now - if anyone tells me, especially now with SP2 here, that I have to do
this & that & this & enable this port or that port, I am going to puke my
guts. How many millions of people are behind routers now in a little home
network? With more each day joining the club. I just read over 50% of
Americans are now on broadband, so routers are becoming very common in

I have absolutely no voice or video problems with Yahoo Messenger. 6I never
have had any. I am guessing 6 months or so ago I was told in one of these NGs
by what I remember as some official looking name for a Microsoft guy, that SP2
would handle this stuff differently & all would be fine. Well I now have SP2
and the same ol' sh*t..

My friends I am talking about - we're all Yahoo Messenger people now. I do
not understand what the problem is with Microsoft on this one thing here.
Firewall shmirewall,, I honestly do not think that is it. But even if it is,
I should not have to do anything to fix it. How can a company like Yahoo
out-do Bill Gates like this?

Yea my main chat client is now Yahoo Messenger, but I still would like to get
this resolved. We use MSN Messenger for files transfers, because in this it
is superior to Yahoo Messenger for this. (Yahoo has size limitations, for one

OT : The steel knights (st33l-Kn1ghts) is a small Yahoo Messenger based
chatroom club. Whether you are techie or a newbie, they're looking for some
new blood. It's nice to know the people you chat with in a chatroom
environment. http://www.steel-knights.com . (you can run Yahoo Messenger &
Windows/MSN Messenger at the same time with no conflicts).

Back in August I got a free 1 year EZArmour subscription. I uninstalled
Norton and went with CA. The install when great. I did not install the
firewall, as I felt no need for it. Life was great until I read I had no
e-mail protection in the free version. I then went and bought 3 copies of
EZ Antivirus, and installed on my three WinXP Pro SP2 machines.

On my machine in August I tried to uninstall EZ Armour and install
EZAntivirus to no avail. Each time I tried Security Center said No
Antivirus installed. I finally gave up and stayed with EZArmour. Today I
got an e-mail about vulnerability in specific versions of eTrust EZ
Antivirus. I tried once again to remove EZArmour and add latest EZAntivirus
software. Same problem as before. The other 2 machines updated great.

I have noticed that if a restart Security Center from control
paneladministrator toolsservices it will find and show the computer as
protected. However the first time I reboot the computer, back comes the
Windows Security Alert. It appears the security center service starts
before EZAntivirus kicks in. I truly feel this problem was caused by EZ
Armour not completely uninstalling correctly. Please advise me on how to
fix this, as I prefer to use EZAntivirus on all my machines. CA says its a
Security Center issue, contact Microsoft.


Linux Opinion: An Open Letter to a Digital World
"The Windows platform is not just insecure - it's patently,
blatantly, and unashamedly insecure by design"
December 18, 2004
As a Linux desktop user himself, system administrator Chris
Spencer did not relish having to clean up his wife's
infected Windows PC after it had become compromised. By the
time he'd solved the immediate problem, Spencer had become
so fed up with spyware, trojans, viruses, and spam, that he
decided it was time to write a letter to the world. It's a
simple message: it's time to switch from Windows to Linux.
"The letter serves as a guide," Spencer explains, "taking
you through some of the history of Microsoft right up to
this present day."

To Anyone Who Will Listen,
Recently I was reading an article from Wired magazine
talking about the Windows spyware problem [1]. It was
unbelievable to me that people would choose to use programs
that they know make all their personal information
available to companies. It turns out that 80% of Windows
users suffer from spyware [2]. I read many articles like
these but always thought that these people have problems
just because they aren't careful. Maybe they don't run
anti-virus, they don't use a firewall, or they browse seedy
sites and download applications for seedy activities. It
turns out though that is not the case.

My wife discovered that her computer had been infected by
spyware and trojans despite the anti-virus, regular Windows
updates, having the good sense not to open attachments,
using a firewall, and avoiding any type of seedy activities
online. As best we can tell someone exploited IE
transparently while she searched for medical information to
help our nephew.

The clean up from these types of infections is great fun. I
spent not less than 5 hours running about every spyware
prevention program known to man. Each one searching for
those pesky files and registry settings. The worst thing of
all was that, once I cleared them off the disk, simply
starting Internet Explorer would reinfect the whole system.
Seriously, it was great fun and I did, eventually, have the
satisfaction of beating the problem. That's right - a
system administrator for 10 years with a degree in computer
science and a RHCE CAN clean up a single spyware infection
in 5 hours.

I hope you see what I am really saying here. How on this
earth are people that aren't trained in Information
Technology going to do it? As a Linux desktop user, I had
never been exposed to this type of problem. Having now
battled with spyware, I am finally motivated to speak up
and say something to the world. I want to get a single
message across:

It's time for anyone running a Windows PC to switch to Linux.

You see, the Windows platform is not just insecure - it's
patently, blatantly, and unashamedly insecure by design and
for all the lip service to security it's really not going
to get better, ever. To make matters worse, it's more
expensive and gives you fewer necessary applications right
out of the box than Linux. Everyone, even Microsoft, knows
this - they are just too afraid to say it. The tide is
coming in. Nothing on this planet can stop it.

Whew. I said it. I am so happy to get that off my chest,
however, for me to stop here would be unfair. I haven't
really proved it to you. So if you will entertain me a bit
longer here is the rest of the story.

Microsoft started conducting a "Get the Facts" [3]
marketing campaign against Linux. This signaled that they
have correctly assessed that their competition is Linux and
that they need to fight it with all they have. It even made
it into their 10K filing. [4] It's really an interesting
read to note that Microsoft sees Linux as a major threat
It's a big enough threat to their monopoly that they say:

"The Linux open source operating system, which is also
derived from Unix and is available without payment under a
General Public License, has gained increasing acceptance as
its feature set increasingly resembles the distinct and
innovative features of Windows and as competitive pressures
on personal computer OEMs to reduce costs continue to
If Microsoft thinks this then that alone is more than
enough reason to give a fair look at Linux. Of course it's
just as likely that they are preparing the lawsuits to
attack Linux because it is a real competitor. I am not sure
which distinct and innovative features they are
referencing. Perhaps it was the whole GUI concept that
Apple sued them for stealing from them. Perhaps it was the
Microsoft Office-like functionality that Open Office has
that Microsoft took from Word Perfect. It's hard to tell
and it gets me off topic to delve into it.

Alright, let's talk about the "Get the Facts" marketing
campaign. What happened is that Microsoft and vendors that
make money on Microsoft products have all come together to
tell us that we us why we should use their products. As a
consumer and something of a student of history, I always
question people that are highly motivated to protect their
jobs and money. Did big tobacco say their products were
safe long after they knew it wasn't true? Might Microsoft
be inclined to say that their products provide better total
cost of ownership (TCO) and security than another product
despite knowing it wasn't true?

It turns out they have done something strikingly similar
before. [5] When IBM OS/2 had just taken off and become
"the best selling retail software product in America" then
"sources close to Microsoft" leaked word to a columnist for
the UK edition of PC Magazine, who dutifully reported both
the rumor and source." - Computerworld, March 20, 1995,
page 118. From there it was all downhill for IBM. Despite
everything indicating that OS/2 was doing great the press
just kept printing the Microsoft party line. In the almost
10 years since that happened, have things changed? Are they
kindler, gentler, and friendlier to work with or do they
still spin, bully, and use talking heads?

Carrying on in their history we see that, empowered by
their victory over IBM, just 4 years ago Microsoft was
ordered to be split in two by Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson
because they were convicted of abusing their monopoly
market position. Then 3 years ago Judge Colleen
Kollar-Kotelly reversed the decision to split them and a
much lighter penalty was imposed. Unhappy with the results
the EU took up the case and just this year Microsoft was
convicted in the EU. Since then Microsoft has paid billions
of dollars to the companies that were aligned against them.
One by one settling the differences. Most of the companies
had little choice but to accept the money they were
offered. Because they have been so badly beat. Now they
stand with billions of dollars in the bank and a patent
portfolio that is rapidly expanding.

I don't know about you but when a convicted monopolist that
has been shown to use those monopoly powers against their
competitors says that Linux is a competitor but that it's
not as secure or cost-effective, well then I take note.
Because I know there is a good chance that a half truth was

Maybe Linux is shoddy code just hacked together by a
college student. However, according to the four-year
analysis by five Stanford researchers [6] Linux contains
only "0.17 bugs per 1,000 lines of code" and most all of
those bugs have been fixed. Given that an earlier study
from Reasoning, Inc [7] had already shown that the Linux
TCP/IP stack had a 0.013 per 1000 lines of code defect rate
back in 2001, it is hardly astonishing that the entire
Kernel is also relatively low in defects compared to your
average commercial software application To put that in
perspective the average code seems to have anywhere from 2
to 30 bugs per 1000 lines of code. That makes the Linux
kernel between 11 times and 176 times better than your
average product. So it's certainly not shoddy software by
any stretch of the imagination.

Considering that many Linux distributions are free, it is
hard to believe that it would be more expensive than
Microsoft where a simple upgrade costs $100 and their
Office application costs hundreds more. Call me crazy but I
am having a hard time finding any truth in the "facts" as
reported by Microsoft. However, Microsoft studies the TCO
to show that other factors make Linux more expensive. Yet,
the studies that I have read seem to make crazy assumptions
like saying it takes more money to train users to push a
button on Linux than it does to push a button on Windows.
They also tend to ignore the costs associated with viruses,
spyware, and trojans that prompted me to write this.
Perhaps most unfortunately for Microsoft they also ignore
that wildly varying labor costs directly affect TCO. [8]
That means it wouldn't just be a poor decision it would be
a completely moronic decision for a government to use the
Windows platform in the third world if it wasn't absolutely
necessary. To be honest, for a long time I have wanted to
see a case study that took these types of issues into
account. I was, for this reason greatly disappointed, when
I heard about a study from Cybersource [9] that ignored
these things but still found Linux, even Red Hat Enterprise
Linux, to be at least 19% less expensive. So much for
Windows being better value, they can't even win when the
whole thing is tipped in their favor.

Maybe I missed something? Maybe Microsoft just happens to
be truly better at security than Linux? For this I had to
get dirty and dig. On the surface it did seem like Windows
had fewer security issues. Looking at Seconia, a security
research company, I discovered Windows 2000 Server has had
only 76 Advisories in all of 2003 and 2004. [10] Red Hat
Enterprise Linux 3 on the other hand has 101 Advisories
[11] and it wasn't launched until November and looking at
Red Hat Enterprise Linux 2.1 I found a whopping 145
vulnerabilities. [12] That looks pretty bad, right?

I am sure that is what Microsoft would like us to think. If
we would just ignore the elephants in the closet then we
would come to their happy conclusion. I'm not going to do
that though.

Microsoft Windows is but one component in a much larger
Windows platform. What good is the operating system without
remembering productivity software, anti-virus software,
instant messengers, media players, software to burn CD and
DVDs, and the list goes on and on? These are all things
that Red Hat and every other Linux distribution includes as
part of the package. Usually they go so far as to include
multiple applications for each function. It would be,
therefore, completely unfair if we didn't compare a
comparably equipped Windows platform to a comparable Linux
platform. How do you add it up though? Whose products do
you pick and whose products do you ignore? It's a horrible
can of worms. I tried to do it. To build the comprehensive
list so that we could compare a Microsoft Windows that's
fully equipped like a Linux distribution and I was able to
exceed the number of advisories. I just felt dirty doing it
and in the process of doing it. Besides, I came to the
realization that the bug count isn't what really mattered.

What really matters is that the bugs are getting fixed so
you aren't online without protection and that the updates
were easy to track and install. Both of which Microsoft is
in serious trouble with.

With Linux all of the updates for all of the different
types of applications come through a single path and in an
automated way. It is a process very much like the Windows
Update service. The key here is that one update service
covers all of the products. On the Windows platform you can
get the Windows updates this way but what about all of the
third party applications we needed to have the same
functionality as Linux? Each of those need to be searched
for or are hidden inside the application themselves.

In my research I found one particularly nasty Microsoft bug
that really emphasizes this point. I am talking about the
GDI+ buffer overflow with JPEG processing [13]. They put
out a security bulletin and they released a patch for each
of their affected products but they never identified who
put the SDK library in their products and each of those
products linked to it individually. Not only did this mean
users had to be experts that researched the update on their
own, but they also had to manually install it in each
location. You have to admit, that sure isn't as nice as the
centralized updating that Linux has. It seems more like a
tidal wave to me.

Then there are the issues related to actually fixing the
bugs that are known. Again, Secunia makes it really easy to
see. Of the 76 advisories Microsoft 2000 Sever still had a
whopping 20% outstanding and one of them was rated "Highly
Critical". Red Hat Enterprise Linux had fewer than 1%
outstanding and it was rated only "Moderately Critical". So
much for fewer security updates meaning you are more secure
and let's not even talk about the Internet Explorer Web
browser. Because it is so insecure that the United States
government, through the Computer Emergency Readiness Team,
had to issue a warning to use any browser besides IE. [14]
Yet, to use Windows Update you have to use IE. It's just
not fair.

Then there is the issue of design. Linux was designed to be
in a hostile Internet centric world. As people were
programming it they knew this and it no doubt played a role
in the designs of their products. With Linux you will find
that firewalls are enabled by default, users rarely login
as administrators, server applications run as users that
have limited rights, etc. In Windows these obvious things
were an afterthought. Finally put into Windows XP with the
creation of SP2, well mostly. I think it's because of the
mindset that Windows is for end users on either private
networks or no network at all that Microsoft has been hit
so hard by security issues. It's of course equally possible
that the issue is entirely different. Maybe they don't fix
the security holes because it's considered a feature. I
know they said as much about the Windows Messenger Service
[15] even though it was being actively used to send banner
advertisements to desktops around the world.

Perhaps Microsoft is finding that the standard software
wisdom about bugs [16] being less expensive to fix before a
product ships is true because after several years of having
security as the number one focus they are as plagued or
more plagued by security issues than ever before. Maybe
pouring money on the problem won't fix it? I mean come on
Even before Windows XP [17] - we knew these things but it
still shipped with the stupid default settings and we STILL
have 20% of their advisories unfixed. How can anyone feel
safe running on a Microsoft platform?

Linux provides a better paradigm. It costs less, it is more
secure, and perhaps most importantly of all it isn't
controlled by a single vendor. While Red Hat is the largest
distributer of Linux and does provide a comprehensive
support system and legal protections for their customers,
they aren't alone. Major companies like IBM, HP, and Novell
are all deeply involved with Linux but none of them are in
control of it.

Because of Linux, the future of computing is commodity. By
the year 2000, Linux already represented billions of
dollars worth of development effort [18] and it's owned
collectively by each one of us. The savings will follow and
you can count on getting what you pay for or there will be
someone else that is there for you on the terms that you
want. The tide has turned and Microsoft is going to get
wet. From my perspective they already are all washed up.

It's all an issue of attitude. Linux follows the share and
share alike [19] mindset where as Microsoft seems to have
the greedy mindset of it's all mine and I want to get paid
for it now [20]. Well Bill, Steve, and talking parrots,
that's not very nice. As I have shown there are good
reasons for using Linux as the better alternative to
Windows. Give my friends at Red Hat a call. I am sure they
could comp. you a copy. Anyway.....

Like I said: It's time for anyone running a Windows PC to
switch to Linux.

I really appreciate you taking the time to read my letter
and I hope that it gets you motivated to make the switch
or, if you already have, that it just makes you feel all
warm and fuzzy inside.


Chris Spencer
chris at digitalfreedoms dot org

My first request:

Hi everyone!
My problem is the following: I regularly download the
newest windows as well as office updates. However, when
it comes to formating the computer, which I do once a
year, all these updates are naturally erased and I have
to download them again. This usually involves a few
hundred MBs and as my monthly download limit is 1GB this
may cause a problem.
Therefore, I would like to know if there is a possibility
to store the update setup files and just install them
again after formating without having to download them
over and over again. Does that possibility exist, where
can I find those vital update setup files???

Please help me,

Answer by Stephen:

MS has a page where you can download SP2 which includes
SP1 and store it on your hard drive. The Service Packs for
Office are also downloadable. When given a choice between
Save and Run, you choose Save and download the file to disk.

You must have a cd-writer so that you can burn backup cds.
You can "slipstream" windows xp with SP2. This software
is very easy to use. The combo will all get installed in one shot.

Your other software updates, new firmware, new drivers
should be downloaded and stored on your drive within
folders that are named clearly. Then you use software
like Nero or Roxio to write those files from the hard drive
to a cd using a cd-writer which records the files. CD-writers
make backups of your system which you can store on 6-12
Cds which are cheap, you don't need what they call rewritable.
A cd-rom which will write files to a cd is a must for any user
who does serious work on a modern computer. The software
is easy to use.


My response to Stephens help:

Hi Stephen,
I thought my first reply was lost as I accidentally pressed close, so I had
to write it all again. This is the newer and better version.
Thanks a lot for your quick response and the helpful information!!
First of all, from what I understand, the downloadable version of SP2 is
meant for deployment to multiple computers over a network, whereas SP2 for a
single computer is yet to come.
Secondly, are you 100% sure that SP2 includes SP1 as well as all other
previous windows updates?
Is it the same with Microsoft Office? Does SP3 include all previous updates?
About the “slipstreaming” windows xp with SP2: Do you mean to say that it is
possible for me to merge my windows XP CD with SP2 and thus create an image
file containing both by using the software offered at
“http://www.neowin.net/forum/index.ph...pic=188337”? Should I then burn
the image on CD and use it to format my pc or could that be risky? Is it
safer to first install windows normally and only then to update it with SP2?
Despite the fact that you think that windows updates are stored within
clearly labeled folders on my hard drive, I still can’t seem to find them.
Could you perhaps name their default location?
Another upsetting fact is that loads of so-called “XP Hotfixes” are listed
in my “add or remove programs”. I suspect them to be my downloaded updates.
However, as it is possible to uninstall them, doesn’t that mean that their
components must be stored somewhere, hopefully even as exe setup files, which
I could, were I to finally find them, easily store on my external USB hard
drive or onto a CD as you suggested? Even more confusing is the fact that
many Hotfixes have (SP2) written next to them, whereas it still says
“Microsoft Windows XP Professional Version 2002 Service Pack 1” in my System
Please help me out one more time,
Adam Schneider

Could somebody help me with my final questions?
Stephen doesn't seem to realize that I have new questions.
Thank you very much,

My computer will not accept the window XP SP2 download
due to a screw-up on my part. During the installation of
XP SP2 I remembered I left Norton's AntiVirus and my
Screen Saver On. I stupidly killed Norton's and shut off
the Screen Saver using the Desktop Properties. When the
installation completed my machine would not complete
booting. Instead a screen came up with several choices
telling me that there was something wrong with my
configuration. I selected the normal restart option at
least 3 times, but that lead me back to the same screen.
Finally I decided to back out of XP SP2 by going into the
safe mode option.

Later in the day XP SP2 once again appeared to have
downloaded to my machine. Instead of installing it, I
declined the acceptance of the software and clicked a box
saying not to check for these same updates again.

After thinking this through, I believe I acted hastily
and now wish to reinstall XP SP2 again. The problem is I
cannot get the XP SP2 download again since I checked the
box asking not to check for these same updates again.

I also tried restoring my computer to a time before I did
the initial installation of XP SP2 thinking that the I
could turn back the clock on that box I checked asking
them not to check for the XP SP2 updates again. This did
not work! To verify, I went on the windows update page
and checked my installation history. It showed that XP
SP2 had been successfully installed even though I am
running XP Home Edition SP1. I guess that's Microsoft's
way of making sure the XP SP2 updates are not resent.

To summarize: What must I do to re-enable auto download
for XP SP2. Please note, all other updates automatically

Thank You.

Never really noticed before, but earlier today I opened a table in one of my Access databases and the font had switched to Courier (I think). Previously, I had set all datasheets to display Arial 10 pt. When I went to Tools/Options/Datasheet/Default Font and clicked in the Default Font dropdown, no fonts were visible - ie. I could not choose any default font. I then went back to the table and was able to change the font (for that particular table) from the Format/Font menu. Any other table (or query) that I opened, however, displayed in Courier.

I then did a "detect and repair" but nothing changed.

Since I also have Access 2000 on my machine, I checked it out and all of my installed fonts were available under Tools/Options/Datashett/Default Font.

Yesterday, I installed the "fixed" version of the infamous 811493 patch from Windows Update. Thinking that this might have had something to do with my problem, I performed a System Restore to a point prior to 811493. After I restarted, I again opened several databases with Access XP. The fonts for all of the tables or queries that I viewed had reverted back to the Arial font, but the font list for setting the default font was still blank.

Following a reboot, however, and opening Access, once again all of the datasheet view had reverted to Courier.

If anyone help with a solution to populate the default font list (or at least point to a registry key that I might alter), I would really appreciate it.



Last month I got a new HP desktop with Win 7 32 bit. I did a full install of Office 2003 professional and set up my IMAP account with Google. It worked/is working fine. Yesterday I signed up for another webmail account (1&1) and wanted to use Outlook to also pull down messages from it. I did the normal setup from within OUTLOOK and I know I have all the correct parameters but as soon as I click on MORE SETTINGS or NEXT, I get an error message "The requested operation failed". I then closed OUTLOOK, went to CONTROL PANEL/MAIL and set it up there. This time it accepted all the parameters. But when I come back into OUTLOOK it does not work. I then went to TOOLS, EMAIL ACCOUNTS to check it out but again I cannot do anything with it (same error message). I then installed the same Office 2003 on my laptop running Win 7 32 bit and was able to setup both the Google and non-Google IMAP accounts. So it has to be something on this desktop; I am guessing a bad registry entry or corrupt file.

I tried the DETECT and REPAIR option for OFFICE under HELP (but telling it to keep my settings). No luck.

Then, based on another suggestion, I created a new PROFILE for just the new account, and set OUTLOOK to "ask for profile" when OUTLOOK starts up. Well, even though there are 2 fully-setup profiles, I now get: "no profiles have been created. To create a new profile use the Mail icon in the control panel" (which of course I did). Then I click on OK and I get "Cannot start Outlook. Unable to open the Outlook window. The server is not available. Contact your administrator". Yet when I went back to the control panel and MAIL there are two profiles, with one being the 'original one' and it is first in the profile list. Once I removed the new one profile that I created, OUTLOOK worked.

I know I can completely uninstall, clean up the registry and install OFFICE again but I don't want to lose all the custom setups.

Any ideas as to what might be wrong and what to try? Thanks!

PS: I also tried to set up a POP3 for this account and it got created but failed several of the tests...

UPDATE WITH MORE FRUSTRATION: Even after completely removing OFFICE, and running the MS program to remove OFFICE components, and then re-installing OFFICE 2003 from scratch (full install), the problem still exists. And I have heard back from one other person who has the same problem so it is not equipment-specific...

I also installed OFFICE 2010 Beta on this computer and it DOES let me create a new IMAP account BUT I have had it crash several times so I do not trust it....

Oh, woe is me! Here I am again working on something about which I am virtually clueless. In a short while I am going to be away from my present location for about 6 months and decided that the solution relative to computer access was to set up remote access software so I can work remotely on my computer here from the computer where I will be. The computers on both ends will be running Windows XP Home using a broadband (high speed) Internet connection. Pursuant to this idea I purchased Symantec's pcAnywhere v11.0 which I chose because it is so widely used and appears to have better security than some of the low cost/no cost solutions. I installed the software on my computer and also on a friend's computer without problems. Now, however, I cannot seem to make it work properly (not at all, actually). My friend's computer is acting as the remote to proof this concept before I leave the area. I think we have properly configured both machines (what do I know about that???) but when he tries to connect to my ("Host") computer, the connection starts and then we get the message "Cannot attach to the specified device", or some such. I have have closed down my Zone Alarm (free) firewall and reverted to the native Windows XP Internet Connection Firewall . I am told that Ports 5631 and 5632 need to be open to use pcAnywhere and have tried to manually open both (using info from MS KB308127). However, Shields Up! now reports that Port 5631 is indeed open but Port 5632 is shown as closed. I don't know if this has anything to do with our inability to connect but whatever the problem(s) might be, I would certainly appreciate any help that I could get. As my buddy and I are fond of saying: "I'm sure it will be a simple solution once we know what the problem is."

Is there a way to make the Open With function permanent?
I recently installed a DVD burner, and Nero wants to rule my computer - run everything graphical. I did a custom install, and fixed part of it, but am having problems with photos and mpegs running in other than the default Windows displays. Open With works once, but next time, I have to do it over again....each time. That's
a pain.

(Edited by DaveA on 15-Aug-06 08:12. Added URL code)Sorry for the delay. I was called out of town unexpectedly.

I installed MS Photo Editor and have not had time to try to figure out what is wrong. I did the Alt Print Screen and Special pasted it to MS Photo Editor. The result was so blurred that you couldn't read the numbers. I will try to see what's causing the problem.

I have made a little progress on connection.

All pings on all 3 machine are OK.

I am able to connect from the Dell to the Gateway but not to the laptop. The laptop can connect to the Gateway but not to the Dell. The Gateway can not connect to either the laptop or the Dell.

I tried loggin on to all 3 machine as Testnet but that created some other problems. I need to do that again and document the connections. Will post those results when completed. So far, I have had more success logging on to each computer normally rather than as Testnet.

I have printed out all the threads and am working my way through again to see what I may have missed. I want to revisit Stuart's excellent post 589,833 and an article found at http://www.windowsnetworking.com/articles_...ls/wxpin9x.html entitled "Networking between Windows XP and Windows 95/98/ME.

Once again I thank you and everyone else for all the assistance given.


I upgraded a few months ago to a new computer with Windows 7 x64. I thought that this operating system had been around long enough to wok through driver issues, but I have endless problems installing printers and accessory devices. Basically, Windows takes over and installs a driver it selects, and I can find no way to stop this action. As an example, I have an old HP4100 printer than is connected with a parallel cable. I got a parallel to usb adapter, and tried plugging it in. Windows found a PCL6 driver right away. I thought I was set. However, many documents did not print correctly. I found that the PCL6 driver does not work well with this older printer. HP's web site had a universal driver for PCL5. However, I could find no way to have Windows give me the option to install this. I found a process under Printer Properties > Advanced to install a new driver. I tried that. I first selected a PCL 5 driver from Windows update. The update program said the driver was installed. However, every time I tried to access printer properties I got an error that the driver was not installed. I don't know if this is a failure of the "install new driver" process or the driver I downloaded from Windows Update, but I could not get it to work. Beyond that, I started noticing other strange things with the computer as if the driver issue had corrupted the operating system. I had to rebuild my computer. The only way around this I found was to attach the printer through the print server on my NAS drive. Since the print server does not pass the name of the printer, Windows could not select. I got the "have disk' screen, and I managed to install the HP universal driver from the HP website. This works most of the time.

I ended up getting a new Lexmark Printer E460dn. Lexmark clearly said on their website to use the Lexmark 64 bit driver. However, once again Windows took over and loaded its own driver when I plugged in the USB connector. I tried attaching the printer as direct IP attached on the network. When I went into Add Printers, Network Printer, Windows found the Lexmark E460dn, and again took control and loaded its own driver before I could do anything about it. Lexmark tech support showed me how to trick the system by designating the network printer as a local printer, creating a new IP port with the local IP address of the printer, and then telling Windows not to identify the printer. This gives me the "have disk" option, and let me install the Lexmark driver.

I seem to have had some issues with other USB devices, including an Adesso AKB-320UB keyboard that uses standard Windows drivers. Again, I was given no control over the process. When I let Windows go to Windows Update and select a driver, I had some strange things happen. I discovered one can go to Devices and Printers, right click the computer, and set Windows to never check Windows Update for drivers. (It still takes over and loads drivers if found locally, but it will not go online to Windows Update to further search.) This time Windows found some generic drivers locally, and the keyboard worked OK using them. However, this caused a problem for my Canon MP780. Canon has a procedure where one installs drivers it supplies before connecting the printer, and during the install process you plug in the printer and it completes. This time it did not complete correctly because it said it could not find a driver for the Canon MP780. I guess Canon must install some drivers for scanning and fax, and let Windows install the basic printer driver, and then link them somehow. I managed to complete this install my running Windows Update, and it recognized a need for an MP780 driver and installed it.

The bottom line is that it seems that one cannot trust the drivers provided by Windows Update. However, Windows provides little or no control over selection of drivers. Thus, you are left with whatever Windows decides. And the "install new driver" does not always seem to work. One cannot even get better drivers from vendors in this situation unless they know how to program around the issue as Canon apparently does with its "load our drivers and plug in the printer during this process". Am I missing something? Does anyone have any suggestions? Thanks.

Warning: This is a long one, 3 conventional pages (including an Appendix, for Heaven's sake!)

Microsoft has made a Byzantine mystery out of getting ahold of their 'HotFix' for the "Detect and Repair" bug in Outlook that I am supplying it here with instructions for its use. The Outlook problem comes from a faulty file installed with IE: vga.dll. Read on.

This Microsoft fix works just splendidly, once installed; and will end all Outlook problems related to the IE installation. Sinxce I hate to see members here suffer tooth-grinding frustration, I am giving you next week's Microsoft Passord to save you stumbling through their bizarre obstacle course.

I'm going to run through the errors in the fix that MS gave me for those interested, only. Others can follow a faster route that I'll show you in a second.

In the 'Appendix' to this message, you van find the full text of the Microsoft email I received and the pertinent article from the Microsoft Knowledge Base. All of that is supplied for those who want to follow the short discussion below. For those who prefer to simply use the HotFix as soon as they can--here's your promised shortcut: Skip down half-a-dozen paragraphs to where you see this paragraph start:
*Here is the... "

There you will find all you need to use this HotFix.

For those who like to follow the reasoning of thing, come along with me as I go through a brief review of the errors found in my copy of the HotFix Support email. To make sense of what I am saying, you should probably open or print out the 1-page attachment to this Msg. It is a verbatim copy of the original from Microsoft Support, and was only successfully solicited after having daringly negotiated The Mystery Maze of Horrors that Microsoft has (for some obscure reason) erected around their HotFix Department.

Here are the 3 errors I found in the attached:

Error #1

The instructions are emphatic, and wrong. The user is ordered to include "all the text" between the two brackets. But that text includes two, not one, URL. Anyone trying to use that tangle would be grounded. So one version must be deleted. Wise user will delete the 2nd address, since that contains another error, all its own.


Ah...the second address. The error here is the inclusion of the < > signs at beginning and end. They're a little tricky since we are so used to seeing them in print, used for addresses and commands. In print, we know to eliminate them before use. But here we are under strict orders to "include all text between" those brackets. And of course they are inside the brackets. Whatever the authority behind our current orders, we have to remove the two < > signs before we can get anywhere.


In my email, there is a Carriage Return inside the URL, and it is half hidden. Until that's removed all else is void. You'll find it just where the line physically breaks. So that must be seamed together.

That's it with the errors. Now, here's the passwords and stuff.

*Here is the corrected URL, the GOOD URL:


And here is the Superbly Secret, Multiply Mystical, Microsoft Private Password. NOTE: These Passwords are JUST good for 7 days, and then they are changed -- so get moving.

Good until 5/10/2001 9:14:30am: @DrCNaep-$

Good until 5/17/2001 (?) : dNCBiP7u-Y

By the way, the password is just used during INSTALL, not during Download; that makes it real easy.

The download file is small (around 600Kb), and zipped.

Installation is a snap.

All Happy Things,


Appendix I - Microsoft Knoledge Base Article.

Office 2000 "Detect and Repair" Process Generates Error Code 1931
The information in this article applies to:

Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5.5 for Windows NT 4.0
Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5.5 for Windows 98
Second Edition
Microsoft Internet Explorer version 5.5 for Windows 2000

After you install Microsoft Office 2000 and Internet Explorer 5.5, the Office 2000 Detect and Repair process may generate the following error message:

Microsoft Office 2000 SR-1 Professional Error 1931: The Windows Installer service cannot update the system file C:Program FilesCommon FilesMicrosoft SharedVGXVgx.dll because the file is protected by Windows. You may need to update your operating system for this program to work correctly.

NOTE: To more effectively search the Microsoft Knowledge Base, use keywords that relate to your issue when you search. If you are searching for troubleshooting information that is not referred to in this article, please try searching the Microsoft Knowledge Base again by using keywords that are listed in the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article:

Q242450 How to Query the Microsoft Knowledge Base Using Keywords

This problem can occur because the version of the Vector Graphics Extensions (Vgx.dll) file that is included with Internet Explorer 5.5 has the wrong checksum. The incorrect version of the Vgx.dll file that is installed by Internet Explorer 5.5 is:

Vgx.dll, version 5.50.4133.200 BetaVersion BETA, Office Version 10.0.803

The invalid checksum causes Microsoft Installer to determine that the file is damaged and needs to be restored.

On operating systems that do not support the System File Protection feature, the following Office version of the Vgx.dll file is installed by the Detect and Repair process from the CD-ROM or from the Microsoft Office Web site:
Vgx.dll, version 5.00.3014.1003, product version 5.00.3014.1003


A supported fix is now available from Microsoft, but it is only intended to correct the problem described in this article and should be applied only to systems experiencing this specific problem. This fix may receive additional testing at a later time, to further ensure product quality. Therefore, if you are not severely affected by this problem, Microsoft recommends that you wait for the next Internet Explorer service pack that contains this fix.

To resolve this problem immediately, contact Microsoft Product Support Services to obtain the fix. For a complete list of Microsoft Product Support Services phone numbers and information about support costs, please go to the following address on the World Wide Web:


NOTE: In special cases, charges that are normally incurred for support calls may be canceled, if a Microsoft Support Professional determines that a specific update will resolve your problem. Normal support costs will apply to additional support questions and issues that do not qualify for the specific update in question.

The English version of this fix should have the following file attributes or later:

Date Time Version Size File name Platform
11/07/2000 19:14 5.50.4211.7 1,769,544 Vgx.dll Intel


Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article.

Additional query words:

Keywords : kberrmsg kbtool msient msiew98
Issue type : kbprb
Technology : kbIEsearch kbExchange550 kbZNotKeyword2 kbIENT400Search kbZNotKeyword3 kbIE2000Search kbIE98SESearch

Article ID: Q279177 Last Reviewed: February 23, 2001

I reinstalled Windows XP Pro with SP3 (Dell Edition) on the first of four refurb Dimension 8300's. Then I went to Windows update to apply the many megabytes of updates. I chose not to un-check IE 8 from among the 70+ initial updates. I also selected Windows Updates' version of the driver for an ATI Radeon 7500 AGP card in the system. (Yes, the 7500 is not standard for Dell, but I wanted four systems all with ATI graphics.)

So the update churned away for a while then asked for a reboot, of course. Windows Updates always ask for reboots, whether needed or not.

I rebooted and was confronted by 16-color graphics, because the Radeon 7500 driver from the Microsoft Update site was obviously bad.

When I clicked to run IE8, either for the Windows Update site or otherwise, it gave me a nonsensical error message and terminated.

I uninstalled IE8, then installed the right version of ATI's Catalyst driver to fix the video problem.


1. As I have said many times before, do not trust the Microsoft Update site for hardware drivers. They may or may not work correctly. If they don't work, you have to screw around to get working drivers again. Why waste the time?

2. If you install Windows XP from scratch, make sure you un-check IE 8 from the list of updates. Once all the updates are applied AND you've installed IE 7, you can then install IE 8 without any subsequent problems.

I did not make the same mistakes setting up the other three 8300s.

... Ben Myers

Hardware: Toshiba Satellite A65-S1062, original configuration, with additional memory from Toshiba / Kingston
OS: Windows XP SP2/SP3 Home
Video: ATI Mobility Radeon 7

Problem: The os installed on the hdd hangs after boot selection whether you select normal, safe, or diagnostic boot. The recovery console, my bootable XP SP3 Pro slipstreamed CD, and original Toshiba "Recovery" CD (restore to factory installation) all hang when ntdetect tries to scan the hardware. Once ntdetect has begun, there is no more activity on the hdd or dvd. Also, I tried a bootable Ubunto Linux Live CD that works on my desktop computer, but the laptop saw it as a non-bootable disk.

Incident: (Sorry for the long post.) Power cord was unplugged and then re-inserted into computer. Screen immediately went to black with a few "lines" of color about a third of the way down from the top. After trying the usual fixes--restore, reinstall driver, find new driver, etc--I finally discovered I had to flash the ACPI bios from 1.4 to 1.9 before I could successfully install ATI driver version Both updates were from Toshiba's support site. After doing this, I decided to perform some maintenance: installed recovery console, updated drivers from Toshiba, installed critical windows updates, including SP3 which somehow got turned off, ran some malware / virus checkers (no issues), ran some windows utilities like chkdsk and sfc.
Everything worked fine, until I plugged in the USB mouse and received an "unknown device" error. Since I had been using the touch pad, I don't know if the mouse stopped working with the original incident or later. Device Manager reported that any device--mouse, thumb drive, external hard drive--plugged into any of the USB ports as "unknown device". However, it reported no problems with the controllers or root hubs (no yellow bangs). It also couldn't "find new hardware" when a device was plugged into the USB ports. I tried a USB light and the ports are getting power. Following Microsoft Article 817900, I was at step 3, disabling USB controllers, when the computer started running very slowly. Taskman reported that System (not system idle process) was using 98-99% of CPU. Eventually, I got windows to reboot and it "found" the new USB controllers, but again System was running at 99%. After about 3 hours, I had to do a hard reboot as laptop was starting to run hot. The result is that now I can't get the system to boot at all, and the USB problem is probably not fixed either At this point, I'm out of ideas.

The only good news I have is the drive was imaged to my network file server after the incident, but before the "fixes". 'The laptop mainly used as the family netbook, but I'd really like to get it operational again. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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