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Sound but no volume control

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Hello. I have a IPC power note book which has plenty memory and a pentium 4 processor running windows XP professional. I have no idea how I picked up this fault but it originated with changing my desktop wallpaper to a blue screen with some daft error message on it. My problems are now twofold:

1) I can't seem to choose a non standard desktop background as a wallpaper as the 'browse' button in the Display control panel doesn't let me select a file on my hard drive

2) I have no ability to change the volume of the sound on my computer - the icon that used to be on the taskbar has now gone and when I open up the control panel and go into the 'sounds and audio devices' all the buttons on the volume tab are grey out. Furthermore if I try a test sound under the 'sounds' tab it displays the error message 'Windows cannot play the sound %SystemRoot%\media\Windows XP error.wav. Your sound card may be in use." My sound card is clearly working because I can play music and all normal windows dounds work but I've no ability to change or mute the volume.

Neither of these issues are absolutely mission critical but they are annoying as [bleep] - especially number 2 above. Any help you can provide would be gratefully received - I think philanthropic help like this is absolutely fantastic. Cheers from Scotland. I have pasted my hijack file thing below:

Logfile of HijackThis v1.99.1
Scan saved at 17:22:57, on 04/05/2005
Platform: Windows XP SP2 (WinNT 5.01.2600)
MSIE: Internet Explorer v6.00 SP2 (6.00.2900.2180)

Running processes:
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\VS7DEBUG\MDM.EXE
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Real\Update_OB\realsched.exe
C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe
C:\Program Files\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe
C:\Program Files\iPod\bin\iPodService.exe
C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe
C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe
C:\Documents and Settings\User\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\G5EZ8XIN\HijackThis[1].exe

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page = http://www.google.co.uk/
O1 - Hosts: www.dcsresearch.com
O2 - BHO: AcroIEHlprObj Class - {06849E9F-C8D7-4D59-B87D-784B7D6BE0B3} - C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 7.0\ActiveX\AcroIEHelper.dll
O2 - BHO: (no name) - {53707962-6F74-2D53-2644-206D7942484F} - C:\PROGRA~1\SPYBOT~1\SDHelper.dll
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [SiSUSBRG] C:\WINDOWS\SiSUSBrg.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [SiS Tray] C:\WINDOWS\System32\sistray.EXE
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [SiS KHooker] C:\WINDOWS\System32\khooker.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [PCTVOICE] pctspk.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [kmw_run.exe] kmw_run.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [TkBellExe] "C:\Program Files\Common Files\Real\Update_OB\realsched.exe" -osboot
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [QuickTime Task] "C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe" -atboottime
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [Cmaudio] RunDll32 cmicnfg.cpl,CMICtrlWnd
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [iTunesHelper] C:\Program Files\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [AVG7_CC] C:\PROGRA~1\Grisoft\AVGFRE~1\avgcc.exe /STARTUP
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [ctfmon.exe] C:\WINDOWS\system32\ctfmon.exe
O4 - Global Startup: Adobe Reader Speed Launch.lnk = C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 7.0\Reader\reader_sl.exe
O8 - Extra context menu item: E&xport to Microsoft Excel - res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\OFFICE11\EXCEL.EXE/3000
O9 - Extra button: Research - {92780B25-18CC-41C8-B9BE-3C9C571A8263} - C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\OFFICE11\REFIEBAR.DLL
O9 - Extra button: Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Windows Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O9 - Extra button: Microsoft AntiSpyware helper - {34A8B2A2-AC42-4BAA-A075-A5169513BE83} - (no file) (HKCU)
O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Microsoft AntiSpyware helper - {34A8B2A2-AC42-4BAA-A075-A5169513BE83} - (no file) (HKCU)
O16 - DPF: ADVFN 4v4 - http://www.advfn.com...p?pid=loadercab
O16 - DPF: {88D758A3-D33B-45FD-91E3-67749B4057FA} - http://dm.screensave.../sinstaller.cab
O23 - Service: AVG7 Alert Manager Server (Avg7Alrt) - GRISOFT, s.r.o. - C:\PROGRA~1\Grisoft\AVGFRE~1\avgamsvr.exe
O23 - Service: AVG7 Update Service (Avg7UpdSvc) - GRISOFT, s.r.o. - C:\PROGRA~1\Grisoft\AVGFRE~1\avgupsvc.exe
O23 - Service: iPod Service (iPodService) - Apple Computer, Inc. - C:\Program Files\iPod\bin\iPodService.exe
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If I understood correctly and your Browse button is visible but not clickable.

Click Start > Run > Type or copy&paste regedit /e c:\deskpol.txt "HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\­Policies\ActiveDesktop" > OK

This will create the file c:\deskpol.txt
Post the content of it please.

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