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274 posts

Ultimate Geek

# 110951 20-Oct-2012 10:21
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Ok, here is a curly one, and i cannot find the answer.

one of my older less computer savvy customers came to me yesterday, saying he could not get past a message on his screen, everything looked different and asked if i could help, i said sure.
so i got to his place and turned on the computer, and it looked like it had been restored to out of the box settings, apart from many of his programmes such as firefox, chrome etc still ebing present, his taskbar had lost all customisations, as had his desktop, there was no pictures, documents or bookmarks, nothing. he mentioned his wife had got some spam or something, and they clicked around to get out then this happened, that’s all I had to work with.

so with no clue as to how it happened, I could not work backward. with never having seen this before I could not say oh, this is because..., and nothing I could find on Google search reflected what had happened.

so I used system restore to take it back 2 days as that was the most recent restore point available and at a time when it was known to be working.

and presto, all the settings, preferences, customisations, documents, pictures bookmarks all came back. I did a restart, it still worked so we turned it off. later that day, he turned it on still ok, did dome work, turned it off, came back turned it on, back to square one again, I talked him through doing what I did, it worked again, and I said just to leave it on till we can figure out what is causing the reset.

each restore point is created just before a 'critical update', could this be the cause? I did this at around 10.30am yesterday, the restore point I used was just before a critical update on the 17th at 1645 and when he went to restore I told him to use the same one, but, he said there were new ones there exactly the same from the 19th but at a later time in the day.

I am puzzled, I would like to fix the problem permanently not just temporarily.

can any one advise.

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932 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 703995 20-Oct-2012 12:54
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Could be a corrupted profile. Check the event logs when the computer restarts and there should be some clues in there.

274 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 704228 21-Oct-2012 09:46
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Ok,  what am i looking for..?


4904 posts

Uber Geek


  # 704255 21-Oct-2012 10:43
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Best to create a new user profile and copy everything over from their current one, which looks corrupted.

932 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 704269 21-Oct-2012 11:26
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jasonwaiheke: Ok,  what am i looking for..?

The basic strategy is to look for errors relating to profiles or the registry, and then start researching those. Or as the previous poster suggested, try creating a new user account.

274 posts

Ultimate Geek

  # 704385 21-Oct-2012 18:50
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Thanks all,  i have never really used the event viewer or looked at the event logs, at least not seriously, so i know where it is but not what i am looking for, like what is right and what is wrong etc.  so i will try the profile re-create if i need to but we will see, i will see how he has gone first.

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