wireless networks not visible

Sony / Vgc-rb40
February 6, 2010 at 20:01:13
Specs: Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition, 3 GHz / 2046 MB
I was on a web site. I got a pop up telling me I had problems on my computer and an automatic scanner started to scan my computer. I immediately clicked off the site and when I tried to go to another it tells me the page can not be displayed.

I exited the net altogether and then when I tried to go back on I could not connect at all. I am using a Netgear wireless modum. The other computer I have is hard wired to the cable and it accesses the net just fine.

When I reboot In the lower right hand corner of my my computer is says 2 wireless networks detected but when I try to access them I get a message that says there are no wireless networks available.

Device manager says everything is fine. Troubleshooting brings back device is working ok. I also could not get a correct response when I tried to ping my IP.

I tried to do a system recover and it says not able to reset my computer to an earlier date no matter which date I use. That's always been a life saver for me but it didn't work at all.

I'm baffled, not that I have a lot of knowledge but I'm wonering if I got a screw up from that pop up. I checked my router and it's working fine.

I ran a spybot, a defrag, and registery scan and everything is clear. I turned off my firewall and that didn't make any difference. Does anyone have any clue what I am dealing with? Thanks for your help.

Jim Smith

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February 6, 2010 at 21:34:52
Jim Smith, SWAG, sounds like a firewall issue to me. When you say you disabled the firewall, was that on the computer or the router? The router has to 'pass' the foreign app. A wireless network will only work if the router firewall lets it. Maybe you just need an exception?
Ed in Texas.

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February 7, 2010 at 07:23:06
Thanks Ed, but it goes deeper than that. After further investigation I found that there are absolutely no recovery files on my computer. The Sony recovery function tells me it can't find the recovery partition and when I checked even the backup files I had made are gone.

Something in that internet popup made a mess of my computer. I have discs for complete reinstall of the original configuration but that means I loose everything if I don't make umteen backup discs of the rest of my files

If you got any other suggestions please speak up thanks again.

Jim Smith

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February 9, 2010 at 17:09:31
Just to let you know it was a virus. It was one where as soon as you used a program it disabled it. I had to do a complete system recovery. It even screwed up my trying to back up my files before I did the restore.

Jim Smith

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February 9, 2010 at 22:02:19
Your symptoms sound like the ones you get when crap has been loaded in the background by you merely visting a contaminated web site. The crap that's loaded was often planted there by the makers of "Rogue" anti-malware software these days. The intention is to create symptoms that make you believe your computer is severly contaminated with malware, but in fact the symptoms have been FAKED. There are usually frequent pop ups about your computer being contaminated, urging you to go to some site to download their software and scan your computer for free, or something begins scanning your computer without you giving it permission to. The catch is, you have to buy their software to get rid of what the scan finds, some or all of which was created by the maker of the "rogue" anti-malware software in the first place!! The quality of the anti-malware program varies fron okay to bad.
Often, many things are disabled from running.
Often, there are icons missing for things that are normally there, e.g., in the Start Menu.
I wasn't aware of these symptoms including disabling wireless networking from working properly, but that's certainly possible - however, they don't disable wired networking.

Malwarebytes often gets rid of malware other major anti-malware software can't get rid of, or can't even detect. They specialize in getting rid of the faked symptoms these "rogue" anti-malware makers have made.
(e.g. Spybot often can't get rid of all the symptoms or doesn't find everything, or anything.)

The next time something similar happens, try this.

I'm assuming you have a wired network adapter on your computer, and the drivers for your wired network adapter have been installed.

Plug a network cable from your wired network adapter to your router.
Reboot your computer.
If you can access Internet Options in Control Panel, or in IE - Tools , click on Connections, click on Setup at the top of the window - run the wizard to re-set your internet connection to the wired connection.
If you can access the internet, even if you get annoying pop ups when you do, or you go to some anti-malware web site automatically, then you can do the following.

Download the free version of Malwarebytes on someone else's computer, copy it to a flash drive.
Plug the flash drive into your computer when your computer is running. By default a box will pop up asking what you want to do with the files on the drive.
Copy the Malwarebytes download to the desktop (screen) .
Run the Malwarebytes download to install it. There is then a new Malwarebytes icon on the desktop screen
If you can still access Safe mode, go there.
(press F8 repeatedlty while booting - choose Safe mode with Networking from the list that pops up)
If not, you can still do the following.
Start up Malwarebytes from the new icon on the desktop screen. Update it. It will access the internet without having to run IE.
Run a full scan.
When it's finished, have it remove everything it has found.
Reboot normally..
Your FAKED symptoms are probably gone.

Many people are so impressed with Malwarebytes that they have bought the paid version.
The free version has no resident scanner - a module that runs in the background all the time - it only runs when you choose to run it - and you have to update it every time you use it.

To get your wireless network connection working again -

Remove the network cable.

Go to Internet Options in Control Panel, or in IE - Tools , click on Connections, click on Setup at the top of the window - run the wizard to re-set your internet connection to the wireless connection.

(Since you may have been fiddling with wireless settings.)
If the wireless internet connection doesn't work, the wireless network adapter isn't connecting to the router, you may need to access the router - connect the network cable so you can access it's configuration , correct any wrong settings in the wireless network adapter's settings to match those of the router.
You may need to reboot before the wireless connection will work.

Or - be prepared ahead of time - get the free version of Malwarebytes and install it - make sure there's an icon for it on the desktop - it will be there for you to try if you need to, when sxxx happens. Run it - Update it - Run a full scan when you need to.

Or get the paid version - it will be ready to go all the time, and will often stop the "Rogue" anti-malware software crap from loading in the first place.

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