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Computer won't connect to Internet under Normal mode


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#1
caigx

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Hi,

I am new to this site but it seems to be very helpful upon reading some of the strings of Q&As. So, here is my question -- my desktop just stopped being able to connect to internet under Normal mode. When I start the PC through Safe mode with Networking, however, I can get on internet OK. For your information, my desktop has Windows Vista Home edition, and is connected via Ethernet (DSL).

It appears I have internet connection since my other laptop can connect wirelessly. Therefore, I think it is the PC configuration of the desktop that's somehow causing the problem. It is strange since it had worked fine previously, -- and then one morning, I had the problem.

Your help would be greatly appreciated!
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#2
DonnaB

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Hi caigx,

Welcome to Geeks to go! :)

If you can connect in Safe Mode w/Networking, and not in normal mode, frequently this is due to a firewall or other security application issue. It's possible a recent update to the protection has changed something.

If you disable the firewall/antivirus, can you connect to the internet from normal mode? Do not go surfing around the net because you will be unprotected.

Let me know and we'll go from there.
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#3
caigx

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Hi Donna,

Thanks so much for your reply. Now that you mentioned, I do recall seeing a prompt from my anti-virus software, Symantec, for "Live Update" shortly before the Internet stopped working. Last night, I tried to disable Symantec by right-clicking on the icon at the lower right corner of the computer, and unchecked "Enable Auto-protect". I also opened up Symantec and it appeared that the software was turned off at that point. However, I still cannot access internet.

What do you think I should do? How do I tell if Symantec is completed turned off, and how do I ensure all other firewalls are disabled as well?

Gia
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#4
DonnaB

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Hi Gia,

First, did you try to connect while in Safe Mode?

To get into the Windows Safe Mode, as the computer is booting press and hold your "F8 Key" which should bring up the "Windows Advanced Options Menu". Use your arrow keys to move to "Safe Mode with Networking" and press your Enter key. Then see if you can connect. The AV will not run while in Safe Mode.

As I stated above Do not go surfing around the net because you will be unprotected.

The link below consists of a list of AV software and how to disable them. Scroll through the list and find yours.

How to disable your security applications

Let me know if you do not see yours in the list.

If you can connect while in Safe Mode with Networking you may have to reconfigure the settings in your AV program. I'm not familiar with Symantec myself, I use Avast 6.0.1289 free version, but I'm sure I could find the info needed to help guide you further.

Is this what you have installed? If so, a firewall is included and the Windows Firewall should be disabled. If not, let me know the exact program you use for further assistance.

To disable Windows Firewall in Vista:

Go to Start > Control Panel > Windows Firewall > Change Settings > click Off > Apply > Ok

Just as you should only use 1 AV you only need one Firewall as well. It can conflict when connecting to the internet.

Let me know how it goes.

:)

Edited by DonnaB, 16 September 2011 - 06:22 PM.

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#5
caigx

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Donna,

Yes, I can connect to Internet through Safe mode with Networking.

I checked the version of my Symantec -- It is Symantec Antivirus, Version 10.2.0.276. I also read the instructions from your response on how to disable it; I haved tried to uncheck "Enable File System Auto-Protect" (there is no box to uncheck for "Scan for trojans and worms" under this version), but still couldn't get internet connection afterwards.

As to firewalls, I tried to disable the Windows Firewalls, but there was no option for me to turn it off. There is just one "On" radio button, and I didn't see a place I could click and turn it off.

Your thoughts are greatly appreciated...
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#6
DonnaB

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Hi gia,

If you can connect in Safe Mode with Networking but not in normal mode it's very likely the update caused this. Norton/Symantec is notorious for this type of issue.

Was Norton/Symantec preinstalled on your computer or your choice of AV software?

Do you have your Symantec product/activation key? Would you be willing to uninstall your AV program to see if that solves the issue?

If so, please go to your Programs and Features > right click > then choose uninstall. You'll then have to click here to Download and run the Norton Removal Tool to uninstall your Norton product by Symantec completely. The link to click for the download looks similar this--> Posted Image

Once complete, try to connect and type Google.com into your search engine. Please do not venture anywhere else. You will be totally unprotected!!!

You can reinstall if you like but you may have the same problem if you do and, as I said, you will need your product/activation key once reinstalled. Have it ready before you proceed. It should be found on the package the disk came in. If you don't have the package, let me know, there are other ways to find it.

There are also free AV Programs that work just as well. If you choose to change to a free AV software let me know.

Now...back to the Firewall.

You said:

but there was no option for me to turn it off. There is just one "On" radio button, and I didn't see a place I could click and turn it off.


When you follow this path:

Go to Start > Control Panel > Windows Firewall > Change Settings

You should be presented with the following window. Is that what you see? Please explain in detail exactly what you see. Or don't see. Is the choice to turn it off not there or greyed out? Is it turned on with blue dot or grey dot on the "On" dial button? Are you logged in on an Administrators acct. or limited acct.?

Posted Image

Donna :)

Edited by DonnaB, 14 September 2011 - 10:15 PM.

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#7
caigx

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Donna,

I got Symantec from a friend of mine; therefore, I don't have the original disk, activation key, etc. It wasn't necessarily a choice of mine -- it was more like "I need to have something anti-virus to protect my computer" thinking.

I am willing to uninstall Symantec and install a free AV software. Could you please tell me what is the best to use and how to download it?

As to firewall issue, I will go back and take a look at the screen again when I get home (I am at work right now) and let you know. I will try to uninstall Symantec first -- so if you could let me know the answer to the AV software above, I can install it tonight at the same time also.

Have a great day!

Gia
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#8
DonnaB

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Hi gia,

It wasn't necessarily a choice of mine -- it was more like "I need to have something anti-virus to protect my computer" thinking.


It's good to hear that you won't suffer a financial lose if you uninstall Norton/Symantec then.

I personally use Avast, as mentioned in a prior post. There are many free AV's that are good though I stay with Avast because it has saved me many times. If you don't mind, lets try Avast. If there are any other AV's that you'd like to ask me about, please do before we proceed.

The best way to change AV software and stay safe doing so is as follows:

Download avast! Free Antivirus 6 to your desktop. Choose the home use only* version. Do not install it just yet!<--VERY IMPORTANT

Then, as I mentioned above:

Click here to Download and run the Norton Removal Tool to uninstall your Norton product by Symantec completely. This will get rid of any residual files that could be left behind that will cause issues.
The link to click for the download looks similar to this--> Posted Image

Do not run it just yet!

Next:
Go to Start > Control Panel > Programs and Features then right click on Norton/Symantec and choose uninstall.

Now run the Norton/Symantec Removal tool.

Once complete, go back to the Avast file we saved to your desktop and install Avast. Make sure to update the program once installed. If you are presented with the choice for a "custom install" please check the box provided.

Read each dialogue box thoroughly when you install anything. Things change so quickly and I want you to make sure there are no prechecked boxes that will install undesirables such as toolbars, etc. I've never come across this with Avast though.

Once complete, let me know how it goes. If the former AV was the issue that kept you from connecting it should be fixed. If not, we can move ahead from there.

Let me know what you find out about your Firewall. Vista has a pretty good Firewall included and it will need to be turned on because this version of Avast does not include one.

Note: You will need to be logged in on an Administrative Acct. to accomplish the above tasks.

Keep me informed and you have a nice day as well! :)

Donna :unsure:

EDIT: Added link to Avast download. Please accept my apologies if this caused you any distress

Edited by DonnaB, 12 October 2011 - 09:23 PM.

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#9
caigx

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Hi Donna,

I want to let you know I am finally back on-line!!!

I did everything you suggested, and my connection came right back. I am now armed with Avast 6 and the firewall is turned on (yes, I did get the window to pop up and was able to see what the setting is). Thank you so much for your patience with me and my problem!! You are the best!

Warmest regards,

Gia
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#10
DonnaB

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Hi Gia,

You're welcome! It was my pleasure to help! :yes: I'm glad you got it sorted out and can now connect normally.

Just want to give you a heads up though. Avast 6 has a feature called the AutoSandbox. The AutoSandbox is a special security feature which allows potentially suspicious applications to be automatically run in a completely isolated environment.

Below is a link you might want to read through thoroughly to familiarize yourself with this feature. If you have any questions or concerns at all, please don't hesitate to ask.

avast! 6.x: Using the AutoSandbox

Happy and safe surfing! :)

Donna :unsure:
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#11
caigx

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AutoSandbox sounds like a good feature to have. I will look into it in details tonight and probably add thhis as you suggested. I am really glad you introduced me to this AV software and its functionalities (and for free! incredible).

As always, thank you and hope these advice and guidance benefits many more to come...

Gia
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#12
DonnaB

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Hi Gia,

Thought I'd share the following links with you. Keeping your Security software and Windows up to date is essential. Even the best AV may fail if you are not a safe computer user.

How to Prevent Malware
Preventing Malware and Safe Computing
"So how did I get infected in the first place?" © Tony Klein



Happy Surfing!

:)

Edited by DonnaB, 16 September 2011 - 07:42 PM.

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#13
caigx

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Very Educational! Thank you Donna!
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#14
DonnaB

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You're very welcome Gia!

Anytime you have questions or concerns please don't hesitate to ask. That's why we're here!

Have a great day!

Donna :)
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