I have a Dell laptop running Windows XP Media Center with SP3 installed. There is wireless connectivity to a Verizon FIOS modem/router using WEP security. (I know it needs to be changed to WPA2). Here is the problem with supporting information:
1. Neither CMD.EXE nor REGEDIT.EXE will run from Start > Run. (They appear to start then just disappear.)
a. I can, however, run COMMAND.COM and then run CMD.EXE within that.
b. I can "jump" to REGEDIT from a registry link within AutoRuns.
2. Unlike other people here on Experts Exchange with a similar problem, I can run both MSCONFIG.EXE and TASKMGR.EXE.
3. When I plug a known good Ethernet cable from the FIOS router to the laptop, there is no connection.
a. The numbered Ethernet light on the FIOS router doesn't light and the wired network icon in the system tray shows as "unplugged".
b. However, when running in Safe Mode with Networking, the router lights and tray icon display properly.
4. When I click on a "search engine results" link in a browser (either IE7 or Firefox), I get redirected to some other site, but when I paste the link directly into the browser's address bar, I go to the correct site.
5. I ran a check for the Conficker worm/virus at http://www.confickerworkinggroup.org
and it came out negative.
6. I ran a full Trend-Micro anti-virus scan and it revealed no viruses.
7. I ran a full MalwareBytes scan and it removed some questionable registry entries, but nothing else.
8. I ran both F-Secure Blacklight and Sysinternals (Microsoft) RootKit Revealer. Neither showed anything out of the ordinary.
Does anyone have any ideas as to what this may be and how to remove it?