Whats wrong with Explorer???

Everytime I access Windows Explorer/Windows directory I get either a fatal error or exception message and have to reboot the computer.  I've narrowed it down to this folder.  Is there any way to correct this problem?  The error messages are not the same each time, however no matter what the message I have to reboot.  Do I need to de-install Win95 and start over again?  I've run the new regclean and it doesn't help.  I've scanned the drive and it comes up clean.


My system is a 486 with 24 ram and two hard drives  I'm not on a network.  I use this machine at home.  I installed Win95 over windows 3.11 and used for 10 months with no problem.  The directories work fine from DOS.  I have both drives compressed using the compression in Plus.  The first problem I found was that Scan would not do a complete Scan and that the re-compress would not do a complete recompression.  Both kept restarting.  This problem seems to be solved, though I don't know why.  

I had installed two Serif programs and they installed a lot of  fonts, I thought that might be the problem and went to Cleansweep to unistall and try again.  I couldn't use Cleansweep, it would get half way through the install and I would get errors and the machine would freeze.  Then I noticed that when I went into Explorer and tried to access the Windows directory itself, I would get additional errors and the same thing would happen.  I can access my directories throught My Computer as long as I don't get near the "Windows" directory.  When I boot up in DOS, I can access the directory.

One of the first things I tried to do was re-install WIN95 but I've had no luck doing that.  Is there something I need to do first.  I have gone to the CD install/unistall, but have not been sucessful.  No error messages, and I was able to install the drivers for Microsoft Fax.  How do I re-install WIN 95 without starting from a empty hard drive?

I don't know if I'm using FAT32.  How do I check?  I don't have a math co-processor and this is a tower not a laptop?


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There are a lot of possibilities, it can be a CD-ROM driver or a network problem for example. What was the action that you did before the error occurred the first time ?
My query was "explorer and fatal error".
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I assume this is ONLY true for the /Windows directory.
What about another large directory? Try COPYING /Windows to another directory and see if it happens.
Is FAT32 in use?? What happens with a DIR in DOS?
What type system, how much RAM, etc...

First advice- reinstall 95. It  ISN'T a  big deal, and you DON'T
have to reinstall any of your old software. With Build 950 I used to have to reinstll every 2 weeks. OSR2 eliminated this problem.

meglameyAuthor Commented:
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meglameyAuthor Commented:
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meglameyAuthor Commented:
Adjusted points to 150
Smeebud has the answer for installing missing or corrupted files. It is his discovery and he must passed on. Come in Bud!

meglameyAuthor Commented:
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at download.com or shareware.com they have this thing called pc clean up.  it did wonders for fixing errors on my computer. maybe it will help you.  if not, post how big your windows folder is.

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The only advice I would give you is uncompressing your first hard drive (the one where your system software runs). This will make your system much faster and will probably solve the error.
meglameyAuthor Commented:
I have checked both shareware.com and download.com, searched for pc clean up; pc cleanup; pccleanup; pc clean*; pcclean* with no luck.  Could it be under a different name?
sorry, i meant pc tune up. if you go to shareware.com and search for tuneup under windows 95 it should be the first thing you get.good luck:)
meglameyAuthor Commented:
I found Win Tuneup and am downloading now.  No pc tuneup.  Is Win Tuneup the same?

Windows directory
494 files
29 directories
38,368,2945 Bytes

I'll give win tuneup a try.
meglameyAuthor Commented:
Found it and am downloading.  I'll give it a try and be back in a day or two with results.  TIA
meglameyAuthor Commented:
I downloaded PC Tuneup and it installed Safety Scan on my computer.  Ran the program and then went into the Windows directory in explorer to test it out.   After I got the windows directory open I moved my mouse and the following happened:

blue screen - A fatal exception OE has occurred at 0028:c107ed2f in VXD MSSCAN32(01) + 0000fae3.  The current application will be terminated - Hit any key etc.  

I hit the enter key and eventually the desktop came up and as soon as I moved the move the following happened:

blue screen - a fatal exception OE has occured at 0137:bff9a08c.  Application terminated etc.

I hit the enter key twice to clear the message and the following happened:

White screen - Kernal32 caused a GPF in modual krnl386.exe at 0001:0000751.  Close  I hit the close key and eventually have to reboot.

These are the messages that happen every time I try to go into the windows explorer - windows directory.

Any other suggestions?
saftey scan? no, i should have installed PcTuneUp.  are you sure you downloaded the right thing?
Forget the tuning stuff and go the "natural" way. Re - Install Windows and leave C:\ uncompressed.
meglameyAuthor Commented:
jagoodie - the file I downloaded was correct and the name is tuneinst.exe, I tried twice last night to install and both times it opened smart scan.  I might have had a bad download, I'll try again today.

pc-alex - I wish I could uncompress my drive and install windows but I don't have the room to do that.  I compressed my drive cause I was running out of room on the drive.  Thanks for the suggestion anyway.
meglameyAuthor Commented:
Well jagoodie, I got PC tuneup installed on the computer and ran it.  When it came to the virus file scan I got the same fatal exception (first one) as before, hit return and got another at 1ab7:011f6b67 hit return, got another at 0246:011747f3, hit return and got another one at 03f8:01172683.  I did not have to reboot to use the computer this time however.  I have a registered macafee virus checker that was updated around the time the problems started.  Any suggestions?
Your first question was how do I d\know if I'm using Fat32:
Go to real dos mode,
C prompt,
type fdisk /status
don't worry, this will not start a fdisking process, it will tell you what you want to know.

Get back to me then
Follow this troubleshooting guide:
#13 is the re-install switchs that stratari refered to:
These are Basic Win95 trouble shooting guide, the steps are merely
a guide for common computer problems and how you can detect the
problem and fix it, some might not apply to your situation.

1)Run Scandisk(standard), run defrag(see Defrag tip).

2)Now don't say I have Antivirus and I don't have a virus
It will give you one thing out to worry about being the problem.

Run antivirus from DOS not from windows, that's what I always do,
Thunderbyte, Norton, F-Prot, Mcafee, Dr Solomon
In Shareware.com
Search for ANTIVIRUS  in the search engine, download the Norton antivirus
And search for
fp-224c.zip    in the search for F-Prot antivirus.
Thunderbyte and Norton are downloadable from my site.

To run antivirus from DOS, download the .zip file and expand it with Winzip or any unzipping software then extract the self extracting file
in a temp folder, copy extracted files to a NEW floppy(out of the box), write protect the floppy by sliding the tab upwards, exit from windows to MSDOS or start computer
in DOS, type A: then type
Scan c:/ all      if you are using Symantec(Norton)
Type F-prot to run F-Prot.
Type tbav to run  thunderbyte.
If virus is found, check all your floppies for viruses, check other
computers that you exchange data or programs with.

Note: Window antivirus might not be able to kill the virus.
The best detecting antivirus is Thunderbyte but as a shareware will not kill viruses, Symantec not as good in detecting but the shareware version does kill viruses.
Windows antivirus merely is good to check files for viruses before copying or installing to your machine.
3)Go to Control Panel\System icon\Device manager tab, see if any marked red or yellow,
remove the marked ones and restart computer, let Win95 re-detect the hardware.

4)Try remember when those errors started, if you think its something you did or installed.

5)Be sure you have over 100mb free hardisk space, if free space is small defrag daily, normally I leave about 350mb free hardisk space, recommend 250mb and up, the more hard disk space the better it runs.

6)Check your C:\Windows\Temp be sure its empty, so is the recycle Ben
specially before you do defrag.

7)Be sure you haven't selected mouse maximum travel speed, in Control panel\Mouse.

8)Uninstall your video driver and restart computer and reinstall it, try lower resolution or different driver if applicable.

9) Don't use any 16bit(win3x) hardware software such as mouse, soundcard, etc, I don’t even run any 16 bit software all together in Win95, using 16bit software degrades Win95 considerably.

10)For testing purposes, rename your autoexec.bat and config.sys.

11)Remove all from the startup folder c:\windows\start menu\programs\startup,
also remove all after Load= and Run= from the Win.ini.
start computer & click ctrl+alt+del and see what’s running other than the Explorer, end task all except the explorer and see if the problem still there.
 also in the registry, remove all except Systray if present.

12)Go To Control Panel\System Icon\Performance tab, be sure it says
"Your System is configured for optimal performance" also says "File System and Virtual memory are 32bit", if you don't that means you missed item2 and item10 in this text.

13)If non helped, reinstall win95 from the command prompt using
setup /p f    command, that will clean your system files and replace missing and damaged files.

14) Windows 95 Service pack could create errors,
avoid installing it, but you can install parts of it,
such as OLEUPD.EXE,  Kernel32upd.exe,  Exchange update.
Also Power toys maybe convenient but its not healthy for Win95 to have it.

15)Remove screen savers, Wallpaper, Sound themes entering and exitind

16)Open start\programs\MS_DOS Prompt and type mem /c/p, if you have over
575 kb of Conventional memory then you are OK, best to be over 600kb.

17)Go to Control Panel\ System Icon, in the first tab be sure your RAM
is recognized.

meglameyAuthor Commented:
I checked and I have FAT16.  I am going to log off again and run defrag.  I ran scan this am and everything was OK but I'll run it again.  

Should I unistall Plus.  The disk compression I use is off the plus disk I believe?
meglameyAuthor Commented:
I ran Scan Disk - ran OK; ran de-frag - ran OK.  Went into the Windows directory, error messages still.  Oh also ran virus scan off clean disk, from DOS prompt. All OK
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