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Windows 7 & the famous disappearing applications

by Kainunable / May 10, 2009 5:19 PM PDT


I am running a intel quad core (Q6600), 3 gigs ram - windows vista 32 bit. I downloaded the Windows 7 RC 64 bit, installed the guy, and everything went 100%. Then I started reinstalling the applications i.e. Avira antivirus, spyware doctor (applics that I have read that do not have compatibility issues with Windows 7).
Then, suddenly, I receive an error message somewhere (it was brief and I didn't write it down), and suddenly these applications can no longer be located. Cannot find firefox, cannot find the antivirus. It's like they were not even installed in the first place. Reinstalling them creates the same problem. After a while, I cannot locate them and it's as if they never even existed.

Has anyone else experienced this? Is it because I installed a 64 bit system, where as previously I had a 32 bit? I'm fairly certain that all the quad core series can run 64 bit OS, and by my logic, you shouldn't be able to install a 64 bit OS on a machine that cannot run it, correct?

I doubt this was a virus either, because the antivirus (Avira AntiVir Personal - Free Antivirus was the first thing that I reinstalled on the machine, and period that it was unprotected was limited.

Have reinstalled Vista (gasp!) because of the problems. Has anyone experienced this issue before? Is there something that I am not seeing?

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on that note
by Kainunable / May 10, 2009 5:30 PM PDT

ah yes, I remember, I actually checked to confirm that my processor was 64 bit capable and it was...

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Re: Avira
by Kees Bakker / May 10, 2009 5:36 PM PDT

Avira isn't on the list of compatible products in

Why not try another one? That's the pleasant thing about release candidates. Nice to play with, and whatever you do, it doesn't influence your production system.

Do I understand correctly that you connect to the web unprotected. Wouldn't it be better to install you protection software from disk before connecting?


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by Kainunable / May 10, 2009 5:46 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: Avira

Yeah, everything in retrospect, I guess. I was reading up on techspot, and it says that Avira is compatible?

My connection to the internet was straight to the CNET website to get the product, download it, and then install it - so around 2 mins. Once installed, I ran the antivirus, and it came out clean - and from what I understand, Avira is one of the better products out there to pick things up.

So by that logic, it cannot be a virus, right?

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by John.Wilkinson / May 11, 2009 3:09 AM PDT

"Has anyone else experienced this?"
-> I have in the past, as a result of overprotective (malfunctioning) security software, malware infections, hard drive failure, motherboard failure, and misc Windows glitches, largely involving chkdsk and Disk Cleanup. Each a separate issue on separate systems. (Reason why it can be hard to identify.)

"Is it because I installed a 64 bit system, where as previously I had a 32 bit? "
-> No, that part is not a potential contributing factor.

"I'm fairly certain that all the quad core series can run 64 bit OS, and by my logic, you shouldn't be able to install a 64 bit OS on a machine that cannot run it, correct?"
-> It would not install/run at all if the CPU was not 64-bit capable.

"period that it was unprotected was limited."
-> Typically final last words, given the numerous studies that have shown unprotected computers compromised within 2 minutes of connecting to the net, even without visiting malicious websites.

Bottom line: I would try reinstalling Windows 7 from scratch and see if the problems persist. If so, something deeper is amiss.


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by Kainunable / May 11, 2009 3:51 AM PDT
In reply to: Comments...

Reinstalled Windows 7 and everything seems to be running.... so far. Thanks for the help.

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The same happened to me
by bigjosh67 / May 15, 2009 9:04 AM PDT
In reply to: thanks

I did a lot of work last night and the installations disappeared, very weird. I first tought that I did not installed some programs, but the installation directories are there, just the exe files seem to disappear.

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by Kainunable / May 15, 2009 6:51 PM PDT

yeah. i would advise you to just reinstall windows 7 and install programs one by one. Check the compatibility of the programs online as well. if you're busy installing multiple programs at the same and of course, install an antivirus from your flash drive. avira works on windows 7, so that is a blessing.

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by Kainunable / May 15, 2009 6:53 PM PDT
In reply to: yeah

bit of a typo there - what i meant was "avoid installing multiple programs at the same time, because if you have an issue, you won't really know which one caused it."

good luck. windows 7 is proving to be the dream that vista was aiming far. so far so good...

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Good suggestion
by RonS [WINDOWS-TEAM] / May 19, 2009 7:29 AM PDT
In reply to: whoops

A lot of people don't think about this when they're re-loading their computers. Good tip.

Windows Outreach Team

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programs disappear on a Windows 7 64 bit
by jdrcoachcnet / August 4, 2010 12:34 PM PDT

I am experiencing the same issue. Programs and e-mail account suddenly disappear. This is a brand new Dell with Windows 7 64 bit edition. I could reinstall the programs or try a Windows system restore. The only problem is will this issue come back or is there a known fix?

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by skiffdank / September 10, 2010 1:31 AM PDT

Windows 7, 32-bit. Installed 1 week ago on my dell lappy. At first I thought it was going 2 turn out my HD was failing, as I know I'm rough on it.. The current setup is OS/2, Dos 6.22, OSX, & Win-7. All other partitions r fine, and pass all any sort of error or integrity test I throw at them, but windows-7 loses programs. The icons will be blank in the start menu, and windows can't find them, I go 2 their previous location, and even their folder will be gone. Go 2 control-panel, and if I hit "repair" or "update", it actually restores them AND all their settings. These programs are most certainly 7-compatible, and my drive is perfectly fine. Everyone told me what a huge improvement 7 was over Vista, I agree that it uses resources more efficiently, however I'm not a person who's OK with my programs suddenly disappearing, this is a HUGE bug in Windows-7 and until there's a statement & workaround from MS, I'll be uninstalling it.

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And Here Too
by teaneedz / January 4, 2011 2:26 AM PST
In reply to: SAME HERE

I thought someone in the family was accidentally deleting shortcuts from the desktop until I saw it with my own eyes. A shortcut was there one moment and gone the next. Did a search for the original program, found it and added a shortcut. Rebooted, shortcut gone again. Did a search for the program and it was completely gone from the Start Menu and All Programs list. At first Microsoft teaches us to take every precaution against data loss. But losing entire programs is a bit too much. An OS that loses programs is one that I will not trust. I'm glad that this PC is not my work horse.

Some details:
HP, less than a year old.
32 bit
Latest affected program was Safari for Windows

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