.EXE Files Will Not Open - even in safe mode!

Discussion in 'Windows 7 Help and Support' started by contristo, Oct 29, 2010.

  1. contristo

    contristo New Member

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    this has been occurring ever since my computer was diagnosed with a trojan. i removed it, and ever since then no .EXE files will open. I will click on any .EXE file, the revolving circle signifying loading will show for a second, and then it won't load at all - the program is not present in the task manager either.

    the weird thing is, there is no difference in safe mode. no .EXE file will run in any variation of safe mode. this prevents me from running ANYTHING apart from the command prompt, viewing folders, and notepad. i cannot load the internet, a virus scanner, NOTHING. it is difficult to fix something when one is literally unable to access anything.

    i have attempted the 'repair my computer' option when i press f8, but it says it can't be repaired automatically. i downloaded a registry fix from a different computer, but it reads the message "Could not import exefix.reg: Not all data was successfully written to the registry. Some keys are open by the system or other processes".

    to summarize: I cannot load a registry fix, virus scanner, or the internet. i STILL cannot open .EXE files in any variation of safe mode. i do not have the windows 7 disc so i cannot reformat. additionally, the trojan appears to have erased all my system restore points, so i cannot restore to any previous time.
     
  2. patcooke

    patcooke Microsoft MVP
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  3. contristo

    contristo New Member

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    I tried to merge that registry file, both in normal mode and safe mode. both times this message came up:
    Cannot import exe_fix_w7-1.reg: Not all data was successfully written to the registry. Some keys are open by the system or other processes.

    I can't, for the life of me, figure out how a program is exiting in safe mode AND affecting the registry additions like that.
    I am unbelievably frustrated right now. why can't safe mode work? :(
     
  4. fjgold

    fjgold New Member

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    I hate to say this, but since you had a trojan that you say you successfully there must be some damage left from the trojan
    or the removal method or both.
    At any rate it is my belief and the belief of others that a computer once infected cannot be trusted again, even if removal methods seem to
    be effective.
    It basically isn't your computer any more.

    My recommendation, as painful as it seems, is to back up your data and format and reinstall Win 7 (clean or custom install)
    and then reinstall your programs\drivers.

    If you plan carefully this process need not be very painful.

    Make sure you have your program installers handy and download any drivers you may need (save them to external media).
    Win 7 does a great job of installing most drivers from it's extensive database but it might be a good idea to visit your
    computer's web site before hand and obtaining all available drivers specific to your machine.
    Make a list of your installed programs (maybe take a screenshot of your C:\Program Files folder contents) and use that list as a checklist
    to help install your programs.

    I'm sorry I can't be more help but it is my belief that even if malware removal seems to be effective you can't know for sure.
     
  5. patcooke

    patcooke Microsoft MVP
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    I agree, it does sound like either more damage was done or the removal process has left some remaining problem. I think I would also now be considering a clean reinstall. For future reference I would also consider regular system imaging using something like Acronis True Image which would enable full system recovery including all installed apps, updates etc in minutes.
     
  6. Elmer

    Elmer Extraordinary Member

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    As I've posted on a.n.other thread, there seems to be a lot of this about at the moment (cannot run .exe files).
     
  7. fjgold

    fjgold New Member

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    Or the free Clonezilla Live.
     

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