View Full Version : Can't directly open applications

02-07-2003, 03:46 AM
OK, I'll try to keep this short:

I was about to install a second hard drive to my computer when I decided to run an anti-virus check before I started moving data to the new drive. I installed Norton Anti-Virus 2003 Pro. I closed as many programs as I could before the install using CTRL-ALT-DEL (I am running WIN ME). Norton installed with no problems. When I rebooted Norton found a virus (I can't remember the name darn it) cleaned it and moved on.

When the boot process tried to load my startup programs, I got the standard error message for each program stating "Windows cannot find 'C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office10\OSA.EXE'. You may have typed the name incorrectly in the run dialog, or another open program cannot find a system file...etc..."

I get this same message when I try to open any kind of application whether it is on the desktop, in the Start\Programs menu, or in explorer.

The interesting thing is like for example: I have Word XP. If I click on the Word icon on the task bar I get the error message that it is not found. But if I go into explorer, and double click on an existing word document, Word will open and display the document and I can use the program as if nothing went wrong. This is fine for word and excel documents, but I can't access my archived email (I use Agent by Forte).

If I try to run anything in Control Panel (like Add\Remove Programs), I get an error message stating "Windows cannot access the specified device, path, or file. You may not have the appropriate permissions to access the item."

I was able to uninstall Norton, but the same error messages keep popping up.

I have run a couple of online AV programs, and cleaned several trojans and backdoor virii, but the system still behaves the same.

I want to install my new hard drive. Is my best bet to install the new drive (Maxtor 80GB 7200RPM 8MB Cache) as the primary master and load my new copy of Windows XP Pro; then install my existing drive (Maxtor 30GB 7200RPM 2MB Cache) as the secondary master and reinstall all programs; then move associated files over to the 80GB; then reformat the 30GB?

Any and all suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

AMD Athlon 900 on Epox 8kta2 MB
256MB PC133, Hercules Prophet GF2MX 32MB
Win ME, IE6 with all security updates

02-07-2003, 01:30 PM
If you are certain that you have cleaned out all the garbage, you could copy specific files from you previously infected hard drive and then reformat it. I would be very careful about doing so however since it sounds like your system was badly infected and it is very difficult to clean some viruses and other malware out completely. You might want to disconnect the old drive, install the new drive and get your antivirus set up on it, reconnect the old drive, scan it as deeply as possible from the new drive and then do the backup. If it does find anything, make sure you turn the system completely off for a few minutes to clear RAM after it has been cleaned. I would then scan again before trying any backups.

02-07-2003, 04:25 PM
Sounds like whatever virus you had messed up the file association for exe files.

Grab amd run exefix08 (http://home.earthlink.net/~rmbox/Reticulated/Toys.html) fom here.

02-08-2003, 02:08 AM
Wow!!! That file was a godsend! My computer seems to be up and running normally. Thanks so much!

Now on to adding the hard drive...but that's the subject of another thread... ;)