Internet Explorer Opens By Itself

Internet Explorer Opens By Itself to a page I have never been to before, currently, I uninstalled Internet Explorer, but it still pops up, I have run
Spybot Search and Destory
Adware 6.0 professional
Panicware pop up Stopper

This computer is a fresh install, I installled an update antivirus before going onto internet.
W2K Professional
Service Pack 4
Was in in the process of installing the final Critical updates and it started happening.

Please Help, it is not a virus but some sort of hack.

New Zealand
Who is Participating?
sunray_2003Connect With a Mentor Commented:
iexplore.exe is the exe file for IE.
I am not aware of ie.exe nor iea.exe .. I donot think they are related to IE .

sunray_2003Connect With a Mentor Commented:
Hi markskin,

How were you installing the critical updates using Internet explorer or through the internal automatic update program ?

After a fresh install , did you uninstall internet explorer fully ?  

When does IE actually start ?

Asta CuConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I've found that using AdAware Pro SE with all updates, doing deep scanning (including the HOSTS file), along with Spybot S&D (most current including updates and the Immunize function), work well together to find hidden problems.  Have you tried posting the HijackThis results to this free analyzer for some "hints", though I'd caution you to not automatically take actions as a result of this if you're unclear about the results.  Here is a central repository link where our Experts have shared their insights on fighting malware/spyware intrusions with links and recommendations:

This is the HijackThis log analyzer site (choose your language) and post your log into this analytical tool to see what "may" be noted as problems.  Post only those issues here that may need expert review, versus the entire log.  Often the end-user knows best what programs may be called potential problems, but knows they are not, so taking general actions to remove any possibilities can cause great problems.
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Asta CuConnect With a Mentor Commented:
I'd also again revisit the WIndowsUpdate site, choose the HELP and SUPPORT function on the left panel for your environment, and check the WindowsUpdate Troubleshooter link.
markskinAuthor Commented:
I was doing my automatic updates via Internet Explorer, I only uninstalled IE because I thought it might clear up the problem, <<<wrong hehe.

I am at work ATM, so I will try some of your fix's when I get home.
sunray_2003Connect With a Mentor Commented:
markskinAuthor Commented:
I just found 2 exe's in the root of my C: Drive
And they keep trying to run on my computer, it looks like it is trying to run a DOS screen, and I get a error message asking me:

c:\winnt\system32\autoexec.nt. The system is not suitable for running MS-DOS and Microsoft Windows Applications. Choose Close to terminate the application.

The Plot thickens.
Somehow I also had 180 Search Assistant installed on my Computer, considering all I did was install critical updates and visit no other websites, looks like I got attacked.

Hmmmm whats Winad Client?, uninstalled this as well.

Things look to have settled down, I am using Netscape for the time being (first time in 5 years) .

avi247Connect With a Mentor Commented:
Under C:\WinNT\repair, there is a copy of autoexec.nt
Copy it over to the system32 directory.

I am not sure if ie.exe and\or iea.exe are part of any of the "anti spyware" packages that you installed. If you know that they weren't installed by these apps then..
1. Do a search on your drives for ie.exe and iea.exe and rename all instances you find to <filename>.bak or so.
2. Go to Start>Run>Type regedit in the Run box. This opens up the registry.
** Backup your registry before any modifications. Select My computer, then click Registry on the menu>Export Registry File**
Navigate to HKEY_Local_MACHINE>Software>Microsoft>Windows>CurrentVersion
3. Look for the above files under Run and RunOnce SubDirectories. If you find any reference to the above files, select it, Right click and select Modify. Then rename the file to <filename>.bak again
4. Do a search for the above files using Edit>Find. Rename any hits.
5. Repeat 1,3,4 for Search Assistant also.

If you are not sure if they were installed by these apps then
1. Search and rename these files. Start each of the anti-spyware apps and see if they throw an error.
2. Right click on those exes, go to Properties> Version tab and see what it says in Copyright.
You may now get an identity of the source (although this can be spoofed).

Asta CuConnect With a Mentor Commented:
On the Winad Client, see quite a few hits on google that point to problems and intrustions, as noted here:
Asta CuCommented:
Thank you, happy we could be of some help to you.
Best wishes,
":0) Asta
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