My Download is Plugged Up

Question

When every I try to download anything from the internet, I get to the download page, and a tiny box with shapes in it appears in the left hand corner. Nothing else happens, I can't click on it, and the file never downloads. I used to be able to download things from the internet, but them my computer got a virus, and ever since we fixed it I haven't been able to download anything. Your help would be greatly appreciated.

Answer

This question was answered on November 27, 2002. Much of the information contained herein may have changed since posting.

The days when antivirus products could generally "fix" a problem, sadly, seem to be gone.

These days, viruses and their like often re-edit files on your machine called "dll" or dynamic link library files These are basically programs which enable Windows to run several programs at once, call up a program from within a program, and many of the other magical things computers do.

Additionally, viruses often move files around within a machine, rename programs, and other things too horrible to even talk about.

To expect an antivirus program to re-edit the re-editing, rename the renamed, and speak the unspeakable is way more than most programs even consider doing So, even though the virus itself, or whatever caused the damage may be gone (notice I said "may" be gone), the damage is still done

On the outside, you may have a second virus Update your anti-virus profiles and see if perhaps you can hunt down a second virus and kill it You might get lucky.

However, barring that, friend, the best thing I can suggest is to completely go through your machine before anything else and collect every shred of your own personal data and files, and move them to backup disks Don't forget your Internet favorites folder

I like recordable CD ROMS, myself, for backup purposes The non-rewritable kind They are not subject to later virus invasion.

Next, and I hope you're sitting down for this, format your hard drive Install Windows, only, then install a good antivirus program, update it, run it, then go from there Reinstall everything on your PC

I know this is bad news

If that is too much to accept, you can try uninstalling and reinstalling your browser (people have gone to court over this task), and reinstall everything remotely connected with downloading files This will probably take longer than wiping your PC clean, and it still will probably not work completely, but it might.

Sad to deliver this very bad news, but I am facing the same situation with my machine

By the way, Microsoft recommends reinstalling everything on a PC every two years, just as a matter of general house cleaning My PC is four months old I hope the numbers work out better at your house.

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Author

Posted by Robert of Mesa Community College on November 27, 2002