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Secure internet site problem

For the first time in a while, I've got a computer problem that's got me completely stumped. Up until a couple of months ago, I frequently used the secure online web site of my financial institution to check on my home mortgage account. One day, however, I received a "server not found" error message in IE after entering my username and password. After this went on for a week or two, I attempted using other browsers (Opera, Firefox) with the same results. I tried tweaking all of my internet settings for things such as cookies, SSL, trusted/restricted sites, and I even tried disabling all of my antivirus, antispyware, and firewall software...still no help. The bank's tech support line was no help, either.

Finally, I tried accessing my account from another PC and was able to log on immediately with no problems. Does anyone have a clue as to what's wrong with my PC? At this point, I'm just about resigned to backing up my system and installing a fresh version of XP. I like to think that I'm a pretty tech-savvy person, so it's really driving me up the wall that I can't figure this one out. For reference, here's my system info:

eMachines T3256
Windows XP Home Edition, w/ SP2 (and all of the latest updates)
512MB PC3200 RAM
ATI X800XL AGP Graphics

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Problem fixed?

In reply to: Secure internet site problem

After browsing through some other CNET forums, I downloaded winsockxpfix.exe from majorgeeks.com, and after running the program and restarting my system everything seems to be back to normal now. Something in my winsock/TCP settings must have gotten corrupted somehow.

I would still appreciate any speculation as to what the problem might have been and what might have caused it. I've never had any serious virus or spyware infestation. I use MS AntiSpyware beta's active protection as well as Spybot's TeaTimer active protection, and I scan regularly with these programs, Ad-Aware SE, McAfee VirusScan, and Panda's web-based virus/spyware scanner. On a few occasions, I've detected and removed a small piece or two of spyware/adware, but I've never had a big problem. Thanks in advance for your input.

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I know the problem

In reply to: Problem fixed?

This problem is caused when installing a software which uses common files, normally .dll files. When unistalling the software those files are also unistalled and it is imposible to access internet.
Bulletproof is one of the many softwares out there which uses common files on its installation and when removed there is no way to access to internet.

You have done well using LSPfix, but you have to be carefull using such a powerfull tool.

However, this is just a simple example of why your internet connection could had fail. There are many other possible reasons.

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The plot thickens...

In reply to: Problem fixed?

Everything *seemed* to work fine after running winsockxpfix.exe, but I then noticed that my PC had no sound and that the sound system tray icon was missing. When I went to control panel>sounds and audio devices, I discovered that XP thought I now had no audio devices installed! After attempting (unsuccessfully) to reinstall the audio drivers that came with my system, I used system restore to undo what winsockxpfix had done.

I then attempted the fix manually, by replacing the entries in the registry for

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Winsock
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Winsock2

with values that I knew worked on my other PC (these values, I noted, had been modified from the default WinXP settings). This, however, caused the same thing to happen: XP now says I have no audio devices installed. How can modifying the registry keys for winsock cause my audio hardware to stop functioning?

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Try this:

In reply to: The plot thickens...

Ok, don't panic. Try to do the following:

Right click on my computer/Properties. In the "Hardware" tab, click on Device Manager.

There, try to find: Sound, Video and Game controllers.
Click on the "+" sign to expand it. If you find any yellow "question mark" (?) right click on it and update driver.

Please let me know if you haven't sound after trying this. We will try to do something else to fix the problem.

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Device manager is fine

In reply to: Try this:

I tried doing this as well during my troubleshooting, but everything in device manager looks fine. As a matter of fact, NOTHING in device manager changes when I update the winsock and the sound stops working. All of my sound devices are still listed, none of them have a yellow or red mark on their icon, and device manager reports all of them as functioning normally. When I open the sound and audio control panel, though, Windows reports "No Audio devices found."

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Ok, try this now

In reply to: Device manager is fine

Sorry, i have been busy and i couldn't replay earlier.
Well, try to uninstall it from device manager. Reboot your pc. Windows will automatically pick up the drivers.
If you have still no sound we'll try something else.

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Thanks for your help

In reply to: Ok, try this now

Stranomas,

Thanks so much for your assistance. I decided to go ahead and reinstall XP. It's been a while since I've done this anyhow, so I figured my PC could use the cleaning up.

I'll probably never find out the answer, but I'm still really curious as to what the Winsock and Winsock2 registry keys have to do with the audio device drivers. It just seems like an unlikely correlation. Thanks again for your help!

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