I have had an ever increasing popup ad problem for a few weeks and have installed Ad Aware 6.0 and Spybot S&D and neither gets rid of it. I am at the point where something is launching each time I start Internet Explorer. I have managed to get rid of most of the rest of the ads that just pop up in a small box. This web page that remains used to have advertising, but now comes up as "page not found" and there is no close or exit box.
I did check to see what programs start at startup by using Autostart Explorer and found that the most suspicious and unknown to me are webassist.exe and belt.exe The problem is so bad that I can barely type anything and had to switch to my son's PC to ask this question. Every 10 seconds I get a popup window and I have to control-alt-delete to close it up. This morning after some Internet research I downloaded and ran Trojan Hunter. That gave me one possible file to delete and I have done so but the problem still exists.
I think that the original culprit was dw.exe which I tried to remove with Add-Install in Control Panel and was unsuccessful so I tried to delete it to no avail and so I re-named it. I did try to delete webassist.exe and it won't let me - says it's in use or else a critical file.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. I assume my last resort is to reformat my hard drive and I'd obviously prefer not to do that.