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  1. #1
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    Desktop icons not responding

    This is an issue that I have (fortunately!) never encountered before. On a "normal" startup my desktop icons (of which there are many) no longer respond to double-click and additionally the computer seems to be completely dead. The only recourse is to use the infamous one-finger reboot. I thought at first that the HDD might have pooched but then tried rebooting using "Safe mode with networking" and the icons work perfectly well in that scenario. I am writing this post from that condition as I have no other alternative at present. If anyone has any ideas how to solve this rather nasty situation, I would certainly appreciate hearing from you.

  2. #2
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    Try a system restore back to a time when you think they were working; unless it's been a long time.

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    Thanks for the reply. Been there, done that, didn't do any good. Really aggravating.

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    Not necessarily bad news if SR doesn't help; means it's probably a program interaction or setting somewhere. Also make sure you don't have a trickster who took a desktop snapshot and set that as your wallpaper and then hid your icons. Create another user account if need be and if they work there then you at least can narrow it down to being just in the user account in use now.

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    FUN-Thanks again for the reply! This just happened yesterday although I think the computer response time was slowing somewhat before it went completely off the rails. My wife and I are the only ones using the computer and there is only one account (no password involved) so I am not sure what you mean by "create another user account". The thing that perplexes me the most is that the icons work perfectly in safe mode. I think there must be some sort of clue there ...

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExiledMainer View Post
    On a "normal" startup my desktop icons (of which there are many) no longer respond to double-click and additionally the computer seems to be completely dead. If anyone has any ideas how to solve this rather nasty situation, I would certainly appreciate hearing from you.
    "Exiled"

    Hello... What happens if you "Right Click" on the Icons and choose "Properties" ? Regards Fred
    PlainFred

    None are so hopelessly enslaved as those who falsely believe they are free (J. W. Von Goethe)

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    PlainFred- Thanks for the reply. Either left- or right-clicking does absolutely nothing. The desktop (and the computer in general) appears to be totally dead.

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    Does that include the start menu and taskbar as well? If so what does the three finger salute (Ctrl-Alt-Del) do? If you can then get to the task manager, kill explorer.exe under processes and restart it (File>New task (run) and type in explorer.exe) and see if anything changes.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ExiledMainer View Post
    FUN-Thanks again for the reply! This just happened yesterday although I think the computer response time was slowing somewhat before it went completely off the rails. My wife and I are the only ones using the computer and there is only one account (no password involved) so I am not sure what you mean by "create another user account". The thing that perplexes me the most is that the icons work perfectly in safe mode. I think there must be some sort of clue there ...
    You may create an additional User Account in Windows. It should have at least some of the same desktop icons as you have now (because some of your programs are inherently for "all users". You can try clicking on those icons after you create a new User Account and see if they work.

    To create a new User Account click on Start, then Control Panel, then USERs (or User Accounts). In the User Accounts window locate and click on Create or Add New User. Follow the simple instructions and give the account a name (any name you like). Don't create a password.

    Then re-boot the computer. This time there should be a Welcome screen with the existing user and also the new user account which you just created.. Click on the new user account name and wait for it to load and settle down. Then try the desktop icons and see if they work.

    You can delete a User Account by going again to Control Panel / User Accounts. Select the unwanted account and delete it.

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    If the system boots perfectly under safe mode my guess would be either:

    A) A virus/malware that isn't launching in safe mode but does on a normal boot. Case you haven't done so yet, run an AV scan or anti-malware program. If you don't have one, some decent free options would be Avast or AVG

    B) A program who is set up to launch on windows startup and is somehow malfunctioning and preventing the system from booting properly. Most user installed programs don't launch by default under safe mode. So you can hit win+r ant type msconfig (or type msconfig in the start menu's text box) and under the startup tab you'll see a list of programs (some checked and others not). Uncheck any non-essential and see if windows boots properly on normal mode. If it does, just open msconfig again and check the programs you want to run again one by one (and reboot your system everytime) until you identify the one causing the problem. Then either remove it from your system, or if you want to continue using it, reinstall that program and see if that helps.

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    If you do find some apps starting with Windows that do not need to (This is the vast majority of apps) after confirming with msconfig that these are indeed the problem, a couple of apps make it very easy to disable or delete these apps from the Start up folders.

    What's in Startup is a neat little program that can accomplish this.

    Autoruns for Windows is a much more powerful app that can also help. Just look at the Logon tab.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


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  12. #12
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    FUN- Yes, the desktop is totally defunct, including the start menu and taskbar. Ctrl-Alt-Delete is also inoperative.

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    starving- Thanks for the post- sounds like something I need to try!

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    Sanael- Thanks for the post! I have the GFI Software VIPRE antivirus/antimalware program running all the time which has always been reliable. I did run Malwarebytes in Safe Mode after this situation arose and found only a couple insignificant events which I deleted. Your suggestion of using msconfig is a good one and I had thought of that but was a little concerned that I might uncheck something that would cause the computer to not boot at all. I will have to (carefully) give that a try.

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    Medico- Thanks for the post! I have downloaded/installed both programs you listed and have run them. Thanks for that info! There are not that many Logon entries in either program and none looked very suspicious but a couple of them in Autoruns prompted me to register with the user forum and ask about them. That may at least provide some sort of clue.

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