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Explorer (windows and internet) gone weird

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For a long time now the computer at work (a video store) has had a problem with windows explorer and internet explorer (5).
The Buttons along the top of the screen (ie back, refresh, cut, copy etc) are missing their titles (although the icon is still there). When you hover over the back or forward button, that yellow explanation thing appears, but instead of saying 'back' or 'go back one page', it says '|back|Forward|stop|refresh|home|search|favorites|print|size|edit|tools|media' etc etc etc, naming all the names of the buttons in internet explorer.
Since this I have tried everything under the sun to install internet explorer 6 thinking it might somehow rectify the situation (in retrospect i see that this may not have done anything as it is also windows explorer that is affected). I eventually used a third party total-internet-explorer-removal thing. Now I dont have internet explorer at all (using mozilla :tazz: ), and I still cant install internet explorer... (after 'installing' ie 6 it says 'not all components were installed, please restart installation' or something, but it just does it again when i retry it.

I'm guessing reinstalling windows 98 would fix it but its a bit difficult to do...

Any suggestions???
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