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Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!

by Tabatha / December 8, 2004 2:41 AM PST

I have a brand new hp with windows xp and all of the sudden all of the text on the net is super small and photos do not appear it shows a white box with a red X in the top left corner....Please help!!!

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by Yew / December 8, 2004 3:39 AM PST

Step 1: Download and install Mozilla Firefox

Step 2: Use the aforementioned program religiously

Step 3: Forget that the previously used program, hereto known as "That Buggy and Insecure Piece of Crap", even exists

Step 4: ???

Step 5: Profit!

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by masterdon / December 9, 2004 11:18 PM PST

Yewanchors has a good point. Firefox is a great product. But is not perfect either. The red x can be from many problems that have absolutely nothing to do with your browser. The server you are hitting may be very slow and/or the icons were not created correctly by the web page editor. As the webmaster for my companies pages, I have screwed up a link or two in my lifetime. You may have a pop up blocker such as Google Toolbar, etc. which does this. Your browser settings may not allow these, etc. etc.

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Be careful about firefox
by jayfin / February 19, 2005 9:55 AM PST

I installed firefox on one computer with XP sp2 and it causesd the computer to totally crash, resulting in having to reformat the hard drive. I also installed it in another computer with XP sp1 and it locked up but I was finally able to uninstall firefox and restore the hard drive to a time previous to installation.

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by Grif Thomas Forum moderator / December 8, 2004 8:57 AM PST


In addition to Yewanchors' suggestion of using a second browser, in order to help with the Internet Explorer red X's problem you've asked about, have you tried the suggestions at the link below.

Pictures Are Not Displayed on Web Sites in Internet Explorer

To make the text larger on the page, try clicking on "View" in the upper left, choose "Text size", then select something larger.

Hope this helps.


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red x on pictures problem
by pegspearls / February 19, 2005 1:22 PM PST

have tried just everything and it still happens
but thanks for all of your collective advice,
if you have any more thoughts a response would
be appreciated, if not just glad to have
found this source of information...thanks all

from peg

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by genos79 / December 9, 2004 10:16 PM PST

well tabitha if you open internet explorer go to tools then internet options and click the advanced tab go to the bottom hit restore defaults it may cure this also in internet explorer go to viewtab at the top you can go to text size and change the size there

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by allbet / December 10, 2004 5:49 AM PST

Can't help with the annoying little red x, other than you may not have a program that will read the graphic in the format in which it was sent. But as to screen size of the fonts on most web pages, you can increase or decrease the size on 'most if you hold down the CTRL key and rotate the mouse wheel toward you to increase the font size, or roll it forward to decrease the size

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Re;it worked
by Tabatha / December 12, 2004 5:18 AM PST

Thanks allbet it worked.

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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by cooley--2008 / December 10, 2004 8:15 AM PST

I have the same thing happening in emails .Help

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Some tips...try the last one first though if
by TONI H / December 12, 2004 5:26 AM PST

you have SpySweeper installed:

Red Box X instead of images on net:

Although there aren't any guarantees, after install Service Pack 2 on XP, sometimes you need to reinstall the Windows Scripting Engine from the link below:

Windows Script 5.6 for Windows 2000 and XP

Go to tools on your email tool bar. Then go to options. Then click on the Security Tab. Then in the middle of that box there is one line that you do NOT want checked. You do Not want the box checked where it says Download images so uncheck that box.

After installing Spy Sweeper 3.2, it affected both I.E. and FireFox.

From Spy Sweeper's configuration screen disable "Host File Shield" protection.

Solution: edit the hosts file in the C:\Windows\System32 folder and remove the line ""


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Re: Photos show a white box with red X. Help!!!!!
by tonydf / December 13, 2004 9:28 PM PST

I have the same problem but nothing has solved it. I have done everything that has been mentioned in this forum and by Microsoft. Anymore ideas?

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Still have not fixed photo problem
by Tabatha / December 14, 2004 8:02 AM PST

I have tried every thing mentioned and still have a problem with the little red x.

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Try this...
by victorlu / December 21, 2004 11:09 AM PST

Is your browser online when the Red X shows up on the webpage? Are you using broadband or dial up? In the latter instance, its' likely the connection was terminated before the page is fully loaded so the graphics do not show up...thus the red X.
In the former instance, have you tried right-clicking on the images & left-click on 'Show Picture' in the context menu? Give it a try & see if it works...of course it is very troublesome to perform this on every image but it is a telltale sign that something in your system is preventing the images from being properly displayed.
Are there any ad-ware or spyware detection softwares that you have installed like the others suggest? These could be the ones causing the problem.
As for email clients like Outlook Express, the images in emails must be configured to be displayed from the Tools>Options dialogue. Likewise, dial-up-modem connections usually prevent users from viewing the images since an active connection is required to view images embedded in the emails.
Hope this helps...

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tried that
by Tabatha / December 22, 2004 3:01 AM PST
In reply to: Try this...

photo still does not show when i right click, im on dialup but I just downloaded aol virus protection...that was after the problem.

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The non-Microsoft solution.
by Kees Bakker / December 24, 2004 4:26 AM PST
In reply to: tried that

I've got a similar, albeit different, problem. All images display correctly, except .png-images, which give the red-cross (right-click>properties on the link to see the type of the image). All settings are correct, png is supported in IE since many years, nothing specific to be found and it happens with IE 5.5 on both my machines (Windows 95 and Windows 98), albeit in different ways if you try the details.
Surprisingly, I noticed this week the same problem on a Windows 2000/IE6 computer at school, which are supposed to be clean and well-managed.

The work-around: go to and download firefox 1.0. It might very well display all the pictures you like. If so, consider using it as your preferred browser. And if it doesn't help: nothing lost. You might even prefer using firefox above IE for its tabbed windows, some nice add-ons, its speed, its build-in popup-blocker, its lesser proneness to malware or - like some of us - just because it is a non-Microsoft product.

Hope this helps and let us know.


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Red X Solution page - it worked well for me!
by lightthenations / February 26, 2005 11:55 AM PST

I've had the red x problem hit me twice - the first time, I tried everything on every forum I could find,AND I followed everything I found on the Microsoft support article. Nothing worked, and I had to completely format and re-install. It began again a few weeks ago - and I was in the process of backing up files to reformat, when I found the red x solution page on (web site for a computer radio show in the southeast) It seems the problem sometimes has to do with your hosts file, and could be brought on by a program that blocks ads from being served like Spybot or Ad-Aware - both excellent programs) This page has a walkthrough on what to do, and also a good user forum populated by some knowledgeable people. The instructions on that page helped me a ton!

check it out at:

Post here if it works for you!


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Holy crap, it WORKED!!!
by hummels / May 11, 2005 4:28 PM PDT

After I did a search for *Hosts*.* I found a shortcut to "Enable or Disable HOSTS" in my Start Menu under K-Lite or KaZaA Lite! It was KaZaA that was causing the problem! What a pain! Thank God I had the patience to read through every reply.

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by kcid / February 7, 2005 4:06 AM PST

Why do photos show a white box with a red X?

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red x inside square
by schultzred / February 7, 2005 9:57 AM PST

you need to upgrade your shockwave or flash player if you dont have one u can download it for free from c-net hope this was helpful i learned this today since i had the same problem but now it is resolved

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Downloading the latest flash player works
by Shannon88 / August 17, 2005 7:35 AM PDT
In reply to: red x inside square

Yes, downloading the latest macromedia flash player worked for "XP family" -- many thanks!

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white box with red x
by llroy / February 16, 2005 11:09 PM PST

I got this small box with red x all the time maybe because i have dsl, the fix was, go to outlook express,go to top and click tools, at bottom of dropdown box click options, go to top click security, go to download images and "uncheck" box that says block images and other external content in html e-mail

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definite fix try this
by gopinath_sastra / February 27, 2005 5:55 PM PST
In reply to: white box with red x

the solution is not to download mozilla because it is mostly due to damaged hosts files and hosts files are damaged(edited actually) mainly because of spywares
click on start and click on run and type drivers and
click ok
then double click on the folder etc and you will see
some files like hosts and lmhosts
rename both of them as oldhosts and oldlmhosts and restart the computer and this should fix the issue
i ve fixed this same issue twice
best of luck

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Re: definite fix try this
by PCproblems / March 14, 2005 11:29 AM PST
In reply to: definite fix try this

I dont know if we should be renaming the host folders in the ect. folder but it worked for me! I"m running Windows XP Home editon and also had big problems with a red x in a white box but apparently it does fix the problem. I made a restore point in system restore just before the host files were renamed just as a precaution. Antispyware programs dont seem to fix this problem. I have tried many, removed spyware, but never coould fix this red x problem.

Click on START, then RUN,and type the word drivers then click OK. In my Windows XP system it shows at the top of the page a folder named ECT. Double click it. You will then see a folder named HOSTS and another folder named lmhosts. place your mouse over the host folder and right click the mouse. Click RENAME, then type in oldhosts, then right click on the lmhosts folder and rename it oldlmhosts then click on a blank part of the page. You should see the hosts folder is now renamed oldhosts and the lmhosts folder is now renamed oldlmhosts. Restart the computer and wave that red x goodbye. Goodluck it worked for me.

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IT did now work
by gripperdon / August 24, 2005 7:23 AM PDT

I renamed as instructed the red x is still there it does NOT WORK, I am sorry for me.

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It should have said IT DID NOT WORK
by gripperdon / August 24, 2005 10:13 AM PDT
In reply to: IT did now work

I typed wrong, What now I cannot get the site Download Flash Player to work on this computer but it does on my note book.

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The fix is with the host files
by krbarger / September 6, 2005 5:56 AM PDT
In reply to: definite fix try this

I followed the solution from one of the posts and it worked. Click on start and then run....type for your host files (hosts and lmhosts) and rename them oldhosts and oldlmhosts.....and restarted my pc and it worked. I am so glad I found this site. I called Dell support and they could not fix this and I am greatfull that you put your fix out here......thanks!

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Red X
by bigkahuna750 / January 7, 2006 9:36 AM PST
In reply to: definite fix try this

This fixed my computer

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My two cents
by Stan Chambers / August 24, 2005 9:44 AM PDT

On the issue of red X or in my case a red + in email photos. This isn't the same as red x on certain websites.

I've found that if the sender sends photos with their browser set to send mail in plain text format,
I see the small red + in the upper left hand corner of a large white box, where the photo should be.

If I go into the tools/options menu of Outlook Express or Thunderbird and set it to view messages in plain text, the file will appear as an attachment. I can then open it with any viewer that I may have installed.

Just for peace of mind, I have tried all the solutions in this thread and a few others.
If the settings are set to send mail in html format, everything seems to work OK.

Hope this helps.
Best of Luck

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Red x pictures
by foxyboy / September 9, 2005 6:55 AM PDT

This is not your computer at fault your computer has been set to do this to fix this press tools in internet exploror and press reset internet settings

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(NT) red x appears in photos,photos blank
by G_CAULFIELD / August 29, 2008 4:22 AM PDT
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