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Why can I only get so far on the net? What's blocking 'progress'?

Posted on 2007-03-27
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Last Modified: 2013-12-08
Hello, a plea first of al all for any assistance *in simple language*. I'm not remotely a techie!

Suddenly, for some odd reason, I can't *proceed* with browsing, if that makes sense. And I think I can say with certainty that it's not the sites.

Five examples:

I can get to eBay, bring up an item, but when I click watch this item it takes me to an error page.

When I tried to renew my subscription with a site and clicked renewal, again went to an error page.

Same when I tried to check out to buy an item on another site. Again, a blank, error (if that's the right word), page.

When I tried to log into my email account, same thing. Got to the home page, entered id and password, clicked and then blank page.

And when I tried to get into MSN Messenger, again same thing, and it told me that there was a problem with the ISP; which there patently isn't as I can get to sites themselves, but can only do so much on them.

Help, please!

Thanks

Neil
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Question by:Ennnceee
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by:Eternal_Student
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What company provides your internet access?

This could be a proxy issue.
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by:Ennnceee
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I'm in the UK so if you're not, Virgin Media (formerly NTL) may not mean much to you. I've checked with them and they say that because I can get to the sites it's not an ISP problem.

What's a proxy issue please and why should it have suddenly come about?
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by:Ennnceee
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And what can I do about it?
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by:Eternal_Student
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I had the exact same problem with NTL a few years back and it was a proxy issue.

This link should help you out:

http://homepage.ntlworld.com/robin.d.h.walker/cmtips/trancache.html

& this ..

http://ben.cheetham.me.uk/resources/net/ntl-proxy-list
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by:and235100
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Is this just for HTTPS://  (secure) websites?

If so - work through this article: http://www.duxcw.com/faq/win/xp/secure.htm
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and235100 earned 400 total points
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A quick "fix":

Go to:

Start, run, type cmd

input the following commands one by one, followed by hitting Enter:

regsvr32 softpub.dll
regsvr32 wintrust.dll
regsvr32 initpki.dll
regsvr32 dssenh.dll
regsvr32 rsaenh.dll
regsvr32 gpkcsp.dll
regsvr32 sccbase.dll
regsvr32 slbcsp.dll
regsvr32 cryptdlg.dll
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by:Ennnceee
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Thanks for that. Will try to work through those links, although they do seem a bit technical for me to be honest. Am currently running a thorough virus check (my simple mind thought this may be the problem), but will try the quick fix later if you feel it still applies after reading this, which perhaps I should have explained in the first place.

The problem is on the 'secondary' (daughter's) pc in the house, which receives broadband via a wireless router connected to my ten-year-old pc, which I'm now using to get to you here. I did have problems with my pc earlier today, but they didn't appear to be related and it's pretty much back to its normal slow self now.

If it is a proxy issue would it affect just the one pc; the second one in the line, as it were?




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by:Eternal_Student
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I'm not entirely sure? Sorry Ennnceee, this isn't really my field but I presume that if one connection is affected then the other should be too as they are coming in via the same method.
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by:Ennnceee
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That's ok ES. What do you think and...?

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by:and235100
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When you say "wireless router" do you mean "dsl modem"?

It is just that if you have a wireless router - then it shouldn't need to "connect" through anything physically - if it is wireless...

And - as Eternal_Student says - both connections should be affected if there was a problem with the actual broadband connection - if one PC worked - then the problem is a configuration problem on the second computer.
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by:and235100
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As to my "quick fix" being too technical - I don't think so.

Even a novice computer user should be able to follow my instructions...
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by:Ennnceee
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No, didn't say your quick fix was too technical and... Said I thought the web pages at the end of the links might be too technical.

The router is physically connected to my pc, but is wireless (it's called a wireless router) in that it transmits wirelessly to the second pc. There is no physical cable going from one pc to another; just a USB plug, or whatever it's called, into the second pc, which picks up the signal. I get the original broadband signal, which then goes through the router, through a cable modem.

I am fairly novice, but, yes, even I could follow those :)  I presume they still apply?

Would you have any idea, by the way, why this should have suddenly happened when it's been working fine for months?  Is it something my 16-year-old could have done inadvertently?
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by:Asta Cu
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How current is your system with WindowsUpdate?  Have you scanned system for intrusions with updated definition files?  If wireless, are you sure that you're connecting to a "secure" network, or perhaps your 16 year old may have logged in using a non-secure wireless link in your neighborhood and some intrusions occurred?

Listening further, but it does help to know more about your environment and how current you are with updates for your Operating System and browser along with viruscan/firewall, etc.  
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by:Ennnceee
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Hello astaec. The problem pc is, to the best of my knowledge, up to date. I regularly clean out the cache, check for faults, scan for spyware and viruses, with, among others, ccleaner, AVG, Norton, Spybot, Ad-Aware.

I did wonder if the problem may be related in some way to Internet Explorer, but then I presume that wouldn't explain why she can't get into MSN Messenger. Talking of that, she *can* achieve the same end (chat with her friends) using something called web messenger. It's all very odd.

By the way and235100, was still hoping you might be able to advise whether your quick fix still applies in the light of the information on the router and so on.
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by:and235100
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There is no problem following my so-called "quick fix" in your situation.

This just resets the "secure" part of IE... - nothing to do with the physical connection.
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Enabling OSINT in Activity Based Intelligence

Activity based intelligence (ABI) requires access to all available sources of data. Recorded Future allows analysts to observe structured data on the open, deep, and dark web.

 
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Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
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You're not alone with the MSN Messenger login issue, here's a discussion with some workarounds and solutions.
http://www.microsoft.com/communities/newsgroups/en-us/default.aspx?dg=microsoft.public.windows.live.messenger&tid=4e79db92-bfe7-4d3a-9ba1-15ecb5cba02c&p=1

Common solutions for Windows Messenger account logon problems
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/307294/en-us
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Author Comment

by:Ennnceee
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To answer and235100's question earlier, it does appear as though it is only secure sites. I'm not sure of the technical description of secure sites, but if it is those which have or require sensitive, personal information, then I would say so. Having said that, some of the sites that 'don't work' do not have the s at the end of http, if that makes sense.

This may seem a silly question, but do I simply list those - what do you call them - commands one after the other with a space in between? I only ask because it doesn't appear possible to list them *under* each other.
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by:Asta Cu
Asta Cu earned 100 total points
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The expert meant that you register these dll's individually, which is what the process above describes.  You can cut/paste one at a time and hit enter after each or enter manually one line at a time and hit enter, but likely he or she will explain.

Thought it would help to clear your tempfiles again, but also pasting from IE 7 HELP file this for
troubleshooting which you should be able to find from IE Help as well which gives you more detail.
Reset Internet Explorer to the default settings
By resetting Internet Explorer to its default settings, you return it to the state it was in when it was first installed on your computer. This is useful for troubleshooting problems that might be caused by settings that were changed after installation. When you restore Internet Explorer's default settings, some webpages that rely on previously stored cookies, form data, passwords, or previously installed browser add-ons might not work correctly. Resetting Internet Explorer to its default settings does not delete your favorites, feeds, and a few other personalized settings. See the table below for a complete list of all settings and information about whether they are reset or maintained.

If you purchased your computer with Windows already installed, any settings the manufacturer specified will be reapplied. These settings might include a specific home page or search provider.

The following table describes what will happen to various settings when you reset Internet Explorer.

again, go to IE Help for more....

-----

Also, perhaps various settings within Internet Explorer were modified in terms of security...  This also from IE 7 Help..
What is changed when I click "Fix Settings for Me" on the Information bar when my computer is at risk?

When you click Fix Settings for Me on the Information bar, Internet Explorer will reset the security settings that put your computer at risk back to their recommended settings. To see your security settings follow these steps:

In Internet Explorer, click the Tools button, and then click Internet Options.
Click the Security tab.
Click the Internet zone, and then click Custom level.
As you scroll the list, you will see the settings that are not at recommended levels.
----

Perhaps the sites you have problemswith require ActiveX or the like.  Do you see the yellow INFORMATION BAR when you're trying to connect to the problem sites prompting you at the top of the IE window to take an action there to allow the access?  Have you tried pasting the problem links into the Privacy Tab of IE to allow them or to your Trusted Zone?  


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by:Ennnceee
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That will take me quite some time to take in astaec, but very useful. Thanks. You're right, and235100 did say one by one. That was my mistake. I'll come back when I've digested above; may take me a day or two.
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by:Ennnceee
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Well, tried the 'quick fix' first and it appears to have worked. Will leave it a day or two to make sure, but can now (further) access the sites that were a problem; and can also get into MSN.

Could you possibly tell me what entering those commands did to make the difference and why the problem should have suddenly occurred in the first place? Always like to try to understand these things if possible.

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Expert Comment

by:and235100
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These commands essentially re-register dll files (dynamic link libraries) that are critical to IE handling secure webpages - e.g. certificate handling, encryption, protection of transferred data over the internet. Without these working - then Internet Explorer would be unable to process secured sites (as you have found out).

Hope this explains it more clearly.
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by:and235100
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Another idea - if you are having problems accessing some https:// websites - add the addresses in the Trusted Zone in Internet Explorer. This will make browsing the sites slightly more bearable.
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by:Ennnceee
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And would you know why this happened suddenly? If there's a simple answer, may be able to prevent it again.

I looked for the Trusted Zone after astaec mentioned it, but couldn't find it. Didn't know one existed. Where should I look?
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Expert Comment

by:Asta Cu
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Happy all is well....  and hats off to and235100 and you both.

Within IE choose Tools - then Internet Options - Then the Security Tab where you'll find the Restircted, Trusted and other zones listed.

":0) Asta
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by:Ennnceee
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Still working fine, thank you. Keen to give points, but would still appreciate knowing why this happened in the first place, if there's a simple answer, so that I can try to prevent it happening again.
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by:Asta Cu
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That's the "adventure" in troubleshooting.  Isolating cause when so much of what we do relies on the installation choices we've made and all the heightened security issues (needed these days) to prevent intrusions, etc.  When problems arise, it's been a key to check change events and logs to try and zero in on the culprit.  With so many updates more than daily for Firewall/WindowsUpdates/Viruscan/Defenders and so on, change activity is significant.

I find this to be a very good tool to attempt to zero in on "changes" in the Windows XP SP2 environment.
Synopsis and link follow:
The Change Analysis Diagnostic simplifies the identification of recent changes to computers running Windows XP. The diagnostic checks for recent changes to the following:

• Operating system components, such as patches, that are installed as hotfixes or downloads from Windows Update.
• Installed application entries listed in the Add or Remove Programs control panel.
• All kernel mode device and file system drivers.
• Browser helper objects loaded by Internet Explorer.
• ActiveX controls loaded by Internet Explorer.
• Programs loaded automatically during Windows XP startup.
• Programs and Dynamic Link Libraries (DLLs) loaded when an application starts.

After you install this item, you may have to restart your computer.

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=097976f8-1124-45b8-9769-b48429a7a6a1&displaylang=en&Hash=NCu4y2atRJRYZ7HtJvp%2fcyaeY2zA3b3h6578Z5chq1Z34968MhAEpdzE2%2fU5M3y6q3%2fKPvNKm7LpRGQHZ%2fzi2w%3d%3d

Listening further when time permits and back to work.

":0)  Asta
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by:Ennnceee
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Now that *will* take me some time to take in Asta, but thanks. Most useful.

As my original problem has been solved, and pc is still working nicely, I imagine I should close this question with majority of points for and235100, whose 'quick fix' did indeed fix it. Never quite know to allocate points here, but hope that seems fair.
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by:Asta Cu
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That sounds fine here; I'm so pleased things worked out for you.  ":0)  Asta
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by:and235100
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As to what caused this - adding to what astaec said -

This is ultimately a Microsoft product on a Microsoft platform. Unfortunately - you do get more problems with Windows than you do with any other OS - but that may be because so many more people use it.

Another helpful tool is the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/tools/mbsahome.mspx

It will assist you in making sure basic settings are kept at a standard level - and to tell you if you should have updated, but may not have...

Glad my solution worked out for you.
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Author Comment

by:Ennnceee
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Easter greetings from a very hot and sunny south coast of England!
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