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Cleaned out IE cookies and temp files, now no start-up (Win98)

By escapewisconsin ยท 5 replies
Feb 27, 2006
  1. A friend's computer (Win98SE) recently obtained difficulty using Lotus to access her work e-mail (not done through Outlook, through a work server utilizing reverse proxy connections). She was told through the help desk to clean out the IE cookies and IE temporary files, which was done.

    For some reason she (upon restart) was asked for a registration key for Win98, which she obtained and provided. FYI no backup disc exists.

    The start-up goes normally. However, after entering the password for Microsoft networks, she gets an immediate error stating that there was a problem with Explorer and must shut down. (Sorry, no log info available). Upon cancelling or verifying the error message, all she gets is a blank "clouds" desktop background. No icons, no toolbar, nothing. The computer will not even go into safe mode either. As far as I know, there is no security software installed.

    Additionally, upon using Ctrl-Alt-Del, the close files window is totally empty.

    She realizes that the computer is probably a lost cause and is planning to purchase a replacement ASAP. However, there are two files on the Win98 computer that she wants. One is a standard file containing photographs of a beloved pet that was recently put down. The other is a Quicken file (installed as mfg-installed software) of her checkbook, of which the only existing backup is on the iomega ZIP drive. Any insight and suggestions greatly appreciated.
  2. N3051M

    N3051M TS Evangelist Posts: 2,115

    well.. run scandisk on the hdd itself for starters.. has she tried getting into safe mode?

    you can get her to plug in her hdd into another pc as slave and copy data that way, then if you have to format to recover win98 you have it copied already..
  3. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    That doesn't sound like good software to me, more like a trojan.


    Press F8 when booting, select command prompt, copy the files to somewhere safe using DOS.
  4. escapewisconsin

    escapewisconsin TS Rookie Topic Starter

    She (and I) have tried to initiate a safe mode when booting up, but it seemed to ignore the command (although I don't believe she has hit just F8.
    I have monkeyed around with the hdd master/slave thing and know the process, so I will give that a try. I have a spare tower with a decent hdd and no major files on it, so it's very expendable for this.
    As for her tower, she is 99% committed to an upgrade anyways, and was probably going to even before this happened. All she wants is the two files in question.
    I'm going to try the suggestions presented above and report back. Thanks folks!
  5. escapewisconsin

    escapewisconsin TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your input!
    Before I did the slave/master, I tried (at my wife's insistence) booting up with a Norton Goback '05 disc involved and an "emergency virus scan". After EIGHT HOURS of running it (and finding nothing), the cpu still faulted at the explorer.exe shutdown window.
    I slaved this particular HDD off my surplus cpu (also Win98 SE). Booted up absolutely fine. Found and started to retrieve the files in question, although the Quicken file mentioned previously was not recoverable, namely due to a missing .dll file.
    Oh yes, it DID get to start in safe mode; however, the results were the same; crashed at explorer.exe with a blank background and no icons.
    The owner owes me a steak AND lobster dinner now... she has over 700 jpg files to transfer, and a lot of em are around the 1Meg size with generic file names! Grrrr

    Thanks again N3051M and Mictlantecuhtli!
  6. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Missing DLLs can often be found from sites like DLL-Files. After downloading (and copying to Windows directory), they usually need to be registered with regsvr32 (run "regsvr32 dllfile").
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