Problems with Browsers in Win98SE OS

Okay, I have a problem on one of my computers.  It has Windows 98SE as the OS.  

Have a couple of queries first.

When looking at the programs running after pressing CTRL+ALT+DEL there a couple of strange ones,
first is there as  Y7x85ufr311  and second one is D2d5eftgg7iijthd.
Does anyone know whether these are supposed to be on there or not?

When IE is opened up (only via MSN Messenger at the moment and then not always)  the homepage keeps coming up as
I've tried changing the homepage but every time you re-open IE it comes back as

As to IE, I can't open with the icon or through Program Files.
Looked through Add/Remove thing and removed "Surefind", "180SearchAssistant" and "MyWeb" which allowed me to open IE but when I rebooted the computer the next time  IE now won't open.

I tried putting another browser up "Mozilla Firefox" (which I use on my XP system) but it also won't open up to browser page.

Any ideas would be wonderful.


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Start here:

Download Ad-Aware from here:
Install, UPDATE and run.
You may need to reboot and run again to clean all the nasties that cannot be deleted at once (“in use”).

Also excellent is SpyBot Search & Destroy available here:
Install, UPDATE and run.
You may need to reboot and run again to clean all the nasties that cannot be deleted at once (“in use”).
You should also apply the "immunize" function, since it blocks roughly 1900 known 'bad' runs/apis/apps.

Even if Ad-Aware and SpyBot S&D are similar, they do clean different things. You should have both of them and use REGULARLY.

You can also install “preventive” software that will help you control these nasties:

Avoids malicious Active X installs.
Advantage: no system resources used!!!
Just download, install and UPDATE.

All of them extremely useful but you must keep them UPDATED.

Suggestion: Make sure you can see all files and folders and run Ad-aware and Spybot S&D in Safe Mode.

Download also CoolWebShredder, version 2.0:

Install and run it, with ALL browser windows closed.

Good luck,

Sounds like spyware!

Next we need to download and run some spyware cleaning software.  There are many different programs in this category, and below are listed the three that I feel are the most user-friendly.

Spyware cleaning is never perfect, and it is not unusual for one package to find items that another package missed.  Because of this I recommend running at least two different programs; preferably all three.

Explanations and instructions for each package can be found on their relevant sites.  Just make sure that, before you run the software, you have the latest library/definition file.

Ad-Aware SE Personal Edition


Spyware Doctor

If, after all of the above effort, the problem still appears to be there, try using HijackThis to assess your system.  You can find the latest download and some good instructions here:

Once you have a copy of your log file visit here to have it analysed:

You will be told if you have any potential problems.

jazdrewAuthor Commented:
Okay.  Will have to copy them from my XP comp and put them onto the 98.

Did something that maybe I shouldn't have to the 98 comp.

Went into Add/Remove and removed "SIDEBAR". (thinking it was something to do with one of those Lycos sidebar search things you get sometimes)

Now nothing will open.

When I restarted the comp it came up with a reinstall of the OS and I had to key in the Microsoft KeyCode for 98SE.

Did that and now it comes up with a box saying that EXPLORER has performed an illegal operation and will be shut down.
Looked at details of this say that there is an Invalid page fault in module EXPLORER.EXE at 0167:00401f31.

All I can say is  OOOOPS, what have I done?????
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You should try

A registry repair:

Bootup with a startup floppy disk and at the A:\> prompt type

C: (press enter)

Now type:

cd windows\command (press enter)

Your prompt should read C:\Windows\Command, correct?

Now type:

scanreg /fix (space between g and /)

Press enter, wait for the process to finish and reboot WITHOUT the disk.

If that doesn't work, try a registry restore:

Bootup with a startup floppy disk and at the A:\> prompt and repeat the steps above and replace the scanreg command with:

scanreg /restore (space between g and /)

Press enter, select a date PRIOR to the problem, press enter, wait for the process to finish and reboot WITHOUT the disk.

If you don’t have a startup disk, download one from

Any luck?


Can you start in Safe Mode?

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jazdrewAuthor Commented:
Perfect solution.

Everything works, browsers open, files open.

thank you.

my son especially thanks you as it is his comp and he plays his games on it.



Glad it worked.

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