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certain text in browser window is not appearing

by DrRandyBoy / May 4, 2006 11:47 PM PDT

ok, here is a question that is killing me and i apologize for the lack of information as i was asked by a relative to troubleshoot this over the phone. Apparently what is happening is he is getting a certain xml parser error on startup, i tried googling this error and came up pretty empty handed, bizarre already. so the core of the issue is his browsers...both firefox and ie are only giving him intermittent text, and from what i understand he is seeing banners and pictures etc...however very little text is seen. for example on google, can search and get results but is unable to view the text directly above the search bar -> web, images, groups etc.

the specs on the machine are pretty standard, win xp sp2, was using firefox as the default browser and avg antivirus along with occasional runs of ad-aware and spybot s&d

anyone with any kind of help would be greatly appreciated

if anyone needs any additional info let me know, this issue has arouse my curiosity

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I found this...
by Larry38 / May 5, 2006 8:01 AM PDT
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When did this problem start?
by Larry38 / May 5, 2006 8:30 AM PDT
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would if i could, but i can't
by DrRandyBoy / May 7, 2006 5:15 AM PDT

according to the info that i am getting, over the phone mind you, it is rather impossible to download extra utilities as the links often do not show up. further, i too thought system restore was a good idea, it was a no go, the same behaviour continued although the restore point was well before the problem made itself evident

i did look through a good deal of the posts on xml parser errors and could not find anything that was quite similar enough to what i am experiencing here.

i would like to say thanks for the input though and anything further that you can suggest i would be more than happy to look into.

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Re: certain text not appearing
by Kees Bakker / May 7, 2006 5:47 AM PDT


That particular text in google (web, images, groups etc) has nothing to do with xml. The code is rather simple, as shown by View>Source.

<table border=0 cellspacing=0 cellpadding=4><tr><td nowrap><font size=-1><b>Het Internet</b>    <a id=1a class=q href="/imghp?hl=nl&tab=wi" onClick="return qs(this);">Afbeeldingen</a>    <a id=2a class=q href="" onClick="return qs(this);">Discussiegroepen</a>    

This is Dutch, so 'The Internet' is 'Het Internet','images' has become 'afbeeldingen' and 'Groups' is 'Discussiegroepen', but you'll recognize it if you compare it with your version.

If there's a javascript problem, it might not work fully, but it should show. And if both Firefox and IE have the same quirk, it's highly unlikely it's a javascript problem in fact. And it surely isn't an xml-problem.
The important thing: if something happens both in IE and in Firefox there's a common factor playing. AVG is unlikely. Is he running anything else, like Norton Internet Security?

The research I suggest below circumvents some possible causes:
- displaying a local file (won't show the google picture, but with me it shows all the rest) circumvents Internet.
- a lot of malware and other programs don't interfere in Safe Mode.
- editing the html-code to it's bare minimum circumvents javascript problems

Things that would be nice to research:
1. Find out what causes the xml error. Do 'clean boot troubleshooting' (detailed procedures on the MSKB, but dependent on undisclosed OS).
2. Compare results of View>Source on that google page between him and you (he can save it from Notepad and mail you).
3. In IE , YOU do a File>Save>html only of that google page at YOUR computer. You mail the html-file to him. He saves the attachment and opens it both in Normal mode and in Safe mode. Then edit that page (it's rather simple already, but can be made much more simple) until everything that should show up, shows up. Remember that all you need to have a nice html-page is <html><body>Hello world.</body></html> If even that doesn't show up in Safe Mode in both browsers, he has a BIG problem. Otherwise, find out what exactly does show up, and what doesn't, and you're a good way finding the cause and solution to this smaller (although not really small, I admit) problem.

You'll need access to his computer, some knowledge of html, and Notepad. That's all.

Hope this helps.


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by DrRandyBoy / May 11, 2006 1:44 AM PDT

What a very complete answer, better than any answer I got on any of the other forums that I posted this particular problem on. I will be visiting the sick machine in a week or two and will try to get to the core of the issue while I am there using the suggestions you provided. I will let you know how things turn out.

p.s. your medal is in the mail...

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