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TCP/IP and DNS disabled on W7 Pro 32 bit machines

Posted on 2013-10-30
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Last Modified: 2013-11-04
Hi all.  I am new to EE, and this is my first post/question.  I am the IT Director for a doctors office with about 100 end users.  In the last 5 days, I have had 5 PC's suddenly lose internet/network connectivity.  All are W7 Pro, 32 bit machines.  Symptoms are complete corruption of the TCP/IP stack and loss of DNS functionality.  I have run full system scans on all using MalwareBytes, and Kaspersky rescue disks. Neither have found any evidence of virus or malware infections.  I have exhausted all of my resources trying to fix this issue, and have resorted to re-formatting 2 of the 5.  (I was able to resolve the problem by doing a system restore with the other 3).  If anybody else has seen this, please advise.  I can provide more details on steps taken to resolve as replies come in.  Thanks in advance for any help you might provide.
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Question by:dlopez527
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by:John Hurst
ID: 39613199
Malwarebytes is good for malware (I have used it) and Kaspersky is fine for viruses (I use Symantec). But just because they report nothing does not mean you do not have a virus.  

There is not a good reason otherwise for TCP/IP and DNS to vanish in corruption. I have my own plus client Windows 7 Pro 64-bit machines running for years (my own desktop runs 24x7) and TCP/IP stays intact. It is not a Windows 7 problem in this respect.

Also, I keep my own and client machines up to date, so no Windows update causes this.

1. You still may have a virus.
2. Are you installing medical or specialized software that talks to the outside world? Is it safe? Does it permit the opportunity for attackers to get in?

Please do not lose sight of the fact that viruses and malware are invited in. People click on links that: give them kicks; say they can speed up the computer; say they can repair problems; offer free money and so on. ALL of these (100.0%) are dangerous and lead to problems. It happens daily.

That a system restore fixed a couple of computers is further evidence of corruption.

... Thinkpads_User
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Author Comment

by:dlopez527
ID: 39613218
Thanks Thinkpads_user.  I agree.  It seems very virus like.  I have a mixture of XP Pro, W7 Pro 32 bit, W7 pro 64 bit and W8 machines.  It's strange that only the W7pro 32 bit machines are affected so far.  And they all have a critical windows update that happened on Oct. 22nd, although I dont know if thats a coincidence.  We do have a VPN connection with a major hospital, and Epic software installed on all machines.  They use the VPN for server side printing only, otherwise they use a Citrix based program for charge capture and paperless medical records.  I was hoping to hear of others experiencing this issue (because misery loves company), and a possible fix for it.
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John Hurst earned 1000 total points
ID: 39613223
You might wish to consider a Scanning Service such as the Symantec Service below on one machine to see if they find anything.

http://us.norton.com/nortonlive/

VPN is just about the most picky software there is. It is just feasible that recent updates to the 32-bit platform conflicted with the version of VPN software you are using. VPN software sits in the network stack, so you can see how this might happen.

Contact the VPN supplier and ask for a recent upgrade.

I use IPsec VPN and:

XP Pro, Vista Business, Windows 7, Windows 8 and now Windows 8.1 are ALL different versions. None of them were upwardly compatible. The newest NCP version for Windows 8.1 works on 8 and Seven. But it is all picky.

.... Thinkpads_User
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by:John Hurst
ID: 39621383
@dlopez527 - Thanks and I was happy to help.

... Thinkpads_User
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