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Unable to Open My Computer or Windows Explorer

I am unable to open "My Computer" or use "Windows Explorer" on a user's laptop.

Both will open and work in safe mode, but not otherwise.

The laptop is running Windows XP Service Pack 3.
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KIP Help
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3 Solutions
 
remmett70Commented:
Do other programs not open under normal boot?  Anything with an .exe?  When attempting to open Windows Explorer does anything happen?  Errors?

Sounds like a possible infection.  Try a scan with Malwarebytes.
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helpfinderCommented:
what if you login as different user? is it happen the same?
If not, user profile is somehow interrupted maybe, so try to delete (rather rename, maybe _ as a prefix) and recreate it (login as that user).
If yes, this could be a invection (it could be also in previous scenario) and you should scan laptop for virus and malware, other option but not so handy is to reinstall machine if this is happenimg for all user accounts
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vaporvicCommented:
what does this key contain?

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

it should point tpo explorer.exe. if it points to anything else that is the problem.
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vaporvicCommented:
my bad. that key is for the shell period, not necessarily for just opening explorer. check that your event logs dont have any additional info and consider dumping the process when it attempts to launch using procdump from sysinternals. also autoruns.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb795533
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KIP HelpAuthor Commented:
Other programs open fine with a double-click or selecting from the Programs Menu. Their executables work normally and fine.

It works when signed on under a different user.

My Computer and Explorer do seem to open, but they open in a minimized form on the task bar. Clicking on them does not maximize them or allow them to be accessed.

Killing the service does not help.
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vaporvicCommented:
try this

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer

, add a new DWORD value named “MaximizeApps”

Set the value to 1
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KIP HelpAuthor Commented:
Adding the DWORD value didn't fix it.
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helpfinderCommented:
then login as different user (administrator), go to C:\Documetns and settings\affected.username and rename it to _affected.username.
log off and login as affected.username which will recreate the user profile. Log off and login as administrator again, copy all necessary data (desktop, favorites, documents, music, .. ) from _affected.username to affected.username (in Documents and settings).
Try like this.
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nobusCommented:
did you run sfc , or a repair install yet?  that should help :
http://www.updatexp.com/scannow-sfc.html                        SFC use in XP
http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm            Repair install  XP
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vaporvicCommented:
I agree with helpfinder at this point. It' time to recreate the profile. You could be chaasing down what changed for days. You alrready know that it is related to the profile.
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KIP HelpAuthor Commented:
Recreated the profile.
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