Cannot search Google, IE8, etc.

Sony / Vaio vgc-rb64
January 21, 2010 at 20:15:13
Specs: Windows XP, 2.8/1 GB
Have seen several post on here with the same problem...can connect to webpages but cannot search. Also- cannot restore computer to an earlier time. I have Norton and also have tried Unhackme, hijack this and pop-up sentry. I know it has to do with the host files. Do you have another virus removal program that would work better? This is an older computer that my kids use. Thank you.

See More: Cannot search Google, IE8, etc.

Report •


#1
January 22, 2010 at 17:19:28
If you are certain it is to do with hosts files then you can disable hosts by going here:

c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc

Simply rename the file Hosts to HostsX and if the problem is there it will be resolved after reboot. Hosts is not essential, it is simply an option that some folk dabble with.

If renaming the Hosts file and rebooting does not cure the problem then it is not an issue with Hosts itself. If the Hosts file comes back again then that could be due to viral activity.

If you actually use Hosts, it is then a matter of finding the websites with which you are having difficulty and (using NotePad) either deleting the associated entries or putting # in front of them. You would then need to rename HostsX back to Hosts and it would be best to set it as "Read only".

some other bloke...


Report •

#2
January 23, 2010 at 19:12:56
Hello- Thanks for the reply. I do not see the file named host. I think it's hidden and I found it with 'run' and opened it in notepad but I think it's read only and I cannot seem to uncheck that box. I cannot alter it and save it. I don't know if this is what is causing this problem- but in searching the internet for any similar problem....it seems to be the virus can only be deleted in the host file. I do not use host files and only learned of them in researching this problem. I have tried 6 virus removal programs and they have found nothing but this is a virus.

Report •

#3
January 23, 2010 at 19:16:54
oh and I cannot restore it to any earlier time at all...usually I can do that and it will solve my problems.

Report •

Related Solutions

#4
January 24, 2010 at 09:06:26
You need to find the actual file.

In My Computer, at the top of the page go to:
Tools > Folder Options > View

Put the blob in "Show hidden files and folders".

Untick "Hide file extensions for known file types".

Follow the path "c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc" again and see if the file "Hosts" is now visible. If it is read-only, untick that from right click Properties. Renaming it to HostsX (or anything else) should disable it.

some other bloke...


Report •

#5
January 24, 2010 at 12:16:03
Hi thanks again- thanks for the info on where the hosts file was. I ran microsoft windows malicious software removal tool and went back to the hosts file and it was all cleared up! I didn't have to do anything else you suggested. After 2 days I can finally search things now- thank you for your reply. That windows removal tool was the only thing that worked.

Report •

#6
January 24, 2010 at 16:14:25
Glad to hear you sorted it out and thanks for dropping back to let us know how you fixed it.

some other bloke...


Report •

#7
January 24, 2010 at 16:31:59
You may be best off to try Trojan Remover and remove all it finds. Once it runs clean you can uninstall it in add/remove for in the program list.

Some HELP in posting on Computing.net plus free progs and instructions Cheers


Report •


Ask Question