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can't find the virus.... but "Windows can't open this file".

I have run McAfee and Stinger in safe mode, and they are not finding anything.... But something is causing my computer not to be able to locate the file needed to open almost all programs!

I keep getting "Windows can't open this file" "What do you want to do?" I called Dell and they want to wipe my computer and start over. But I want to know if this is a virus that has corrupted my pc or if this is a Windows issue. Last week I completed a Windows update, and the next day I started having issues with not being able to open programs. The day that the issues started, I had a "Window's 7" box popup and scan my pc in like 30 seconds (it was really fast) and it said that there was like 20 virues on my PC and that my computer had been possibly hijacted. Then a box poped up (again with Window's 7 on it) saying that I needed to activate my subscription or pay for a new one since mine was unauthorized/not verified... Any suggestions?

Again I have run McAfee and Stinger both and neither have found anything. I downloaded Stinger today while in Safe Mode to scan for the virus. I was told that McAfee could have been corrupted from a virus, so I ran the "Free" McAfee online virus scan, again it found nothing. I've called McAfee and one of their suggestions was to post here.

Message was edited by: mahinch on 4/20/10 4:34:52 PM CDT

Message was edited by: mahinch on 4/20/10 4:42:34 PM CDT
4 Replies

Re: can't find the virus.... but "Windows can't open this file".

The answer is.... It's not a virus... without any help from the McAfee team or the Dell team to solve this problem, I turned to Microsoft for their help. They solved the problem, it was a matter of changing one file in the registery. Now we don't know what exactly changed the registery file, but the problem has been solved. Microsoft had me run a full scan using ESET's online antivirus, and it did not find any viruses either!!! Thank you McAfee and Dell for wanting to wipe my computer and charge me $80 or more dollars to solve a problem that Microsoft trouble shooted for free... I  think if either one of the two groups would have taken more then 2 minutes to try to diagnose the issue without assuming it was a virus they might have been able to point me in the right direction...

So if anyone else ever has this problem call Microsoft and have them check your registery execute file.

Re: can't find the virus.... but "Windows can't open this file".

Shame you didn't find this document on the main malware discussion page:

How To Fix File  Associations in Windows

It's worth bookmarking if you are unfortunate enough to get hit again.


Re: can't find the virus.... but "Windows can't open this file".

Yes that would have been very helpful... But I really didn't know what to look for.... I had never experienced anything like this before, and was just mindboggled with trying to figure out how to fix it. I wish I would have talked with someone like you at Dell or McAfee yesterday instead of spending hours trying to figure out what was going on.

Thank you for the link, I will definetly bookmark it.


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Re: can't find the virus.... but "Windows can't open this file".

I had the same thing happen although I have Vista.Mcafee did not catch the trojan when it started.When I did a manual scan later it removed the trojan but my registry files are messed up.I don't understand how to fix my registry files.I did look at the link Samantha Price posted but couldn't understand how to fix my registry files.

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