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Active Desktop Recovery

by shoots2 / February 24, 2007 9:24 AM PST

The electricity went off during a storm and when I turned the computer back on the Active Desktop was off. When I clicked on "Restore My Active Desktop" I got this message: an error has occurred in the script on this page.
Error:Object doesn't support this action
Code: 0
URL: file:///C:/Documents %20 and %20 Settings/Owner?Application %20 Data?Microsoft?Internet %20 Explorer/Desktop.htt
What should I do? Help will be appreciated!

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(NT) Tried Using System Restore To An Earlier Time?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / February 25, 2007 6:27 AM PST
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Restoring active desktop
by jeanric / March 24, 2007 5:06 AM PDT

My system did have serious error Microsoft said it was caused by Spyware Doctor which I did have installed but thought not running as I use Trend Micro PC. Then got that active desktop and could not get rid of it Removed Spyware Doctor but still got that Active desktop and same error window everytime I restarted.
Did as suggested here but still got it so I did the properties desktop but this time changed it to Windows XP. That worked so changed it again to the one I wanted and it has been working ever since even when I restart Wonder why it happened in the first place? Jeannie

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restoring active desktop
by kimsanam / May 3, 2007 4:55 AM PDT

You are right. The only way I could clear up the desk top was exactly as you said. Change it to Windows XP first then change it to something else if you want to.

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Its not working!!
by Abags / August 25, 2011 9:28 PM PDT

hey, i tried to change the walpaper.. but they system is not accepting it.. i even tried to change the walpaper from a collection of other pics i hav.. but the white screen is not going.. pls help me out!!!

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And You've Tried These Suggestions???
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / August 27, 2011 12:36 PM PDT
In reply to: Its not working!!
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by ds1909 / October 17, 2007 12:56 PM PDT

This is an old thread but thank god I found it via a Google search. I did as was suggested (right mouse click and choose my desktop background) and it got rid of that pesky error message.

Yay! Thank you!

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Active desktop recovery message
by etunbull / September 1, 2008 9:31 AM PDT

I was on the net and had a word document open when all of a sudden, my PC went out. When I rebooted, I saw a white screen and a message that said Active Desktop Recovery. There was a promt that said restore my recovery but when I pressed that I got an error message and no help. I rebooted again but it kept coming up. Please help as my PC only stays up for a few minutes before I have to start it all over again.


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Active Desktop Recovery
by tomwadsworth / March 24, 2007 4:15 AM PDT

Same thing happened to me.
Solution: Put your cursor on a blank spot on the Active Desktop Recovery Error page, do a right click, and select Properties. Select the Desktop tab, then select whatever image you want as your desktop image. It should restore your Desktop just fine.

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That's fine but it keeps happening
by Gmac62 / October 27, 2007 3:38 AM PDT

Your solution works but this happens to me almost ALL the time and it's bit tedious to have to do this everytime I get on my computer. Anyone know of a permanent solution?

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First, Find Out WHY The Problem Is Happening
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / October 28, 2007 3:10 AM PDT

It shouldn't happen ever unless some sort of interruption is occuring in the computer.. (If you'll note, the original poster in this thread had a power outage.) Some are having the problem because of a specific error in a program.. If that's the case, fix or uninstall the problem program..

If the computer is running correctly, the issue should cure itself.

Hope this helps.


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If I knew WHY then I wouldn't be posting
by Gmac62 / October 28, 2007 9:09 AM PDT

I have no clue as to why this happens at least half the time.

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How About The Other 'Half the Time'...
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / October 28, 2007 12:20 PM PDT

Something is causing the issue and since your post is a tad light as to computer specifics, we'll have to wait till you provide us with more information.

What have you done to attempt to fix the issue? Any specific error messages? Scanned for malware with MULTIPLE tools? Eliminated unnecessary startup programs and services? Installed new drivers?

The more information you give us, the better informed our answers will be.

Hope this helps.


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I hvae the same problem on both of my XP computers
by okrick / September 4, 2009 4:47 AM PDT

Every time the power gets shut off both computers have the Active Desktop message. Neither of us have Active Desktop activated. Both of us use Firefox 3.5 instead of IE.

There must be some way to shut off Active Desktop as I can unplug computers at different work locations and don't get this message when power is restored.

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(NT) And You've Tried ALL The Suggestions In This Thread?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / September 4, 2009 8:02 AM PDT
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Active Desktop Recovery
by thanks4help / November 24, 2007 2:10 AM PST

I too am late in jumping in to this thread... All I can say is thank you, thank you, thank you! My computer froze and wouldn't let me do anything for about an hour, so I just shut it off. The active desktop error message came up and I feared that I messed up my computer. It amazes me that the solution was so easy. You have no idea how grateful and relieved I am for the help.

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It doesnt work.
by EarthBear / June 15, 2008 9:04 AM PDT

When I right click and go to properties, there is no option to change the desktop background. No matter what, I cant get that option cause I am on limited access on my laptop. What can I do?

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Change The User Rights...
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / June 15, 2008 1:12 PM PDT
In reply to: It doesnt work.

Unfortunatley, you've told told us the specifics of your particular computer such as operating system, etc. but setting up user rights such as "Power User", I believe, should allow you to change the properties for simply desktop issues..

Of course, if you aren't the administrator and the administrator won't give you such user rights, that's a different issue that you'll need to tell us more about.

Hope this helps.


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by Punk1939 / November 28, 2010 6:05 AM PST

Thanks so very much! My computer all of a sudden kept going to and opening with the Safe Mode Option Screen and I could not get out of it. I would get the Script Error (as above). This has been baffling me for days.

Using the Fix of.... Desktop/Properties/Windows XP fixed my desktop back right and off of the Safe Mode Option Screen. I then was able to change it back to the Classic desktop.

Thanks so very much!

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Active desktop
by Gene66 / May 9, 2007 1:36 AM PDT

I have the same problem with the same message after power failure.
How did you repair? Hate the white screen! Thanks.

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Thanks to you I was able to solve my problem
by Puzzlednoend / November 15, 2008 11:45 AM PST
In reply to: Active desktop

learningdaily - 11/15/08 10:27 PM In reply to: Active Desktop Recovery by tomwadsworth

Hurray, I did what you suggested: I put my cursor on a blank spot on the Active Desktop Recovery Error page, did a right click and selected Properties. Then I selected the Desktop tab, then selected an image (Windows XP) . You are right, it restored my desktop just fine. THANK YOU.

On a different matter. I signed up some time ago to the Cnet forum, then forgot my password when I used the forum month later,so I chose another one but found that after posting they kept my very first password even though my first password was not accepted. Now after some month , again, my first and second password was not accepted so I've chosen still another password. I got in the forum, posted my message and on Previewing the message noticed that Cnet has my original password on top and the new one I had chosen next. Strange. It looks a bit foolish. What am I doing wrong I wonder?

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Active Desk Top
by tomshipe / May 27, 2007 2:52 AM PDT

I turned on my PC and the desk top had the following message: "Active Desk Top Recovery" Evidently I added something to my desk top. How do I restore my desk top? Many thanks I have Microsoft Windows XP.

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(NT) Did You Try The Solutions In This Thread?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / May 27, 2007 7:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Active Desk Top
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Active Desktop recovery won't go away.
by indyscott53 / September 22, 2008 11:30 PM PDT
In reply to: Active Desk Top

computer lost power during an electrical storm when the household power went off. (s/ have had a ups.. ) It's a Compaq S6200Cl w/ XP HE 2002 SP3. When I go to display properties, I can access all the selections except the background wallpaper. I can change the size on the settings tab, and in the preview I can even see what wallpaper ought to be there. But on the Diplay Properties\Desktop tab, the "background" selection is greyed out, and I can choose any of the wallpapers there.

The computer has CA security suite, and I've turned off the AV, and Firewall. Still no luck. Any suggestions?

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(NT) And Did YOU Try The Solutions In This Thread?
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / September 23, 2008 12:32 AM PDT
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Did I try the solutions in this thread?
by indyscott53 / September 23, 2008 1:00 AM PDT

I've tried:
1 deleting all the Desktop.htt files.. (there was only one) and rebooting the machine.. didn't work.
2 using System Restore to the day before the power went off... didn't work.
3. trying to work on display properties through control panel.. doesn't work.

I think I've tried everything I could find.. Did I miss something?

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No Mention Of This...
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / September 23, 2008 2:47 AM PDT

Because malware can also cause this issue, and there are number of new malware which can "get around" the traditional AV programs, please download and run the free malware removal tool using the instructions below:

Please download Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware from the link below:

Double Click mbam-setup.exe to install the application.

* Make sure a checkmark is placed next to Update Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware and Launch Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware, then click Finish.
* If an update is found, it will download and install the latest version.
* Once the program has loaded, select "Perform Quick Scan", then click Scan.
* The scan may take some time to finish,so please be patient.
* When the scan is complete, click OK, then Show Results to view the results.
* Make sure that everything is checked, and click Remove Selected.
* When disinfection is completed, a log will open in Notepad and you may be prompted to Restart.
* The log is automatically saved by MBAM and can be viewed by clicking the Logs tab in MBAM.

Extra Note:
If MBAM encounters a file that is difficult to remove,you will be presented with 1 of 2 prompts,click OK to either and let MBAM proceed with the disinfection process,if asked to restart the computer,please do so immediately.

And if the above tool doesn't find anything, I would then move on to the computer policies which may have been changed.. To restore ability to change your desktop settings and select a different wallpaper, etc., do the following:

If you're using Windows XP PRO. (I think you mentioned you were using Home Edition but the info in this section should help.):
Click on Start-Run

Type Gpedit.msc

Navigate to User configuration, Administrative Templates, Control Panel, Display

Right click on Remove Display in Control Panel
Click on Properties and select Disabled

Do the same steps to change the following attributes to disabled:

Hide Desktop Tab
Prevent changing wallpaper
Hide Apperance and Themes tab
Hide Settings tab
Hide Screen Saver tab

And since for Windows XP HOME users, see the instructions in the links below to perform manual edits of the registry:

Gpedit.msc Isn't Available On XP Home.. Pro Only....

And To Determine More Of Gpedit.msc Registry Edits..

Hope this helps.


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by indyscott53 / September 23, 2008 10:31 PM PDT
In reply to: No Mention Of This...

I see your suggestion for a malware removal tool, but I have the CA security suite, and it's up to date with a current subscription, and has a spyware component in it. I really don't want to combine competing programs that may think each other is an "enemy".

But I did follow the lead to the gpedit and did find the section for active desktop policies. For "NoActiveDesktopChanges" the value was set to "1". I changed it to "0", but it didn't seem to make a difference. The NoChangingWallpaper was already at "0".

Question 1
What registry section do I need to be in? Hkey_Local_machine, or Hkey_current_user?

Here's a dumb question.. what do 1 or 0 mean? And at what point in the registry edit do the changes I make take effect? Immediately on entry? After I close regedit? After I reboot the computer?... Help me understand what I'm doing a little, please.


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It's Clear The CA Security Suite Won't Get It All...And..
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / September 24, 2008 1:09 AM PDT
In reply to: gpedit

..the Malwarebytes program I provided will NOT cause an issue with your current antivirus/antispyware suite.. It doesn't run "realtime" and is only used as a standalone scanner.. It's up to you whether you want to clean up your machine so I'll let you decide such.

As to exactly which item is needed to fix the wallpaper issue, you'll need to do a little testing on your own AFTER you run the spyware tool mentioned above.. I'm not there to visually inspect each registry entry BUT I have provided you the tools with which to inspect them yourself.

In general, the "0" value entry causes the registry command to stop.. The "1" value causes the registry key to activate. (The registry changes you've checked and made seem to be correct.) And in order to make your registry edits take effect, closing "regedit" will cause them to be saved but restarting is the best bet to activate the changes you've made.

Hope this helps.


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Ok, I'll try the Malwarebytes program
by indyscott53 / September 24, 2008 4:29 AM PDT

and I'll keep trying registry settings. The spreadsheet you sent me to is an eye opener. I didn't really have much understanding of just how many things Windows keeps track of, and how.

But, to go back to what originally caused this problem I have with not being able to change wallpaper... On my first look through this thread I noticed that a LOT of posters with the problem had gotten it directly from a power outage situation. I wonder what is really happening when the power goes off that causes this. It's hard for me to see how it could be related to any "malware", if it occurs directly after a power outage.

I'll keep trying, and I'll let you know what happens.

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Used Malwarebytes Anti-Malware 1.28
by indyscott53 / September 25, 2008 12:17 AM PDT

and while it did find some things that the CA spyware hadn't, even after removing the stuff it found and rebooting, the situation remains the same. Still can't change the desktop wallpaper.

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