help and support centre opens multiple windows on startup and freezes pc

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wolfee

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Jul 27, 2006
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Hi,
I recently re-installed xp pro and have since had this problem on startup which freezes my pc. Help and support windows keep opening rapidly untill I restart my pc. HelpSvc.exe processes dominate the list and continue to open when I view through task manager (which I can only view if I open immediately on startup) and the only way I can stop this is to end process tree, once I have done this everything seems fine. I have tried disabling help and support through services.msc but this only makes the matter worse as pop ups, on start up, telling me help and support is disabled occur even faster than the help and support ones. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

wolfee

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 27, 2006
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34
thought i'd add that after reading up on this I think it's probably an automatic updates issue. I have/had stopped and disabled automatic updates which I think is somehow directly related to the problem. The odd thing is that upon starting/restarting my pc, if I hit alt, control, del quick enough ie before the taskbar shows and the balloon to tell me automatic updates is turned off, I do not have this problem. Also is svchost.exe related to this problem and is it normal for this process to show up in task manager 5 times. Any thoughts regarding this matter will be gratefully received.

Thanks

Wolfee
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2000
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45,855
Can you run System Restore either in normal or Safe Mode and revert to a prior date?

You don't need to open Help and Support to get there. Just run msconfig or the command line:

%systemroot%\system32\restore\rstrui.exe
 

wolfee

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Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Thanks but i've had this problem since installing, (xp pro sp2 with updates 'till feb 06) so can't see that helping. Don't really want to try and install again because there didn't seem like there was a problem while installing first time round.

Cheers

Wolfee
 
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Dec 9, 2000
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45,855
Post a HijackThis scanlog and we will see if there is anything obvious in the log which is related to it. If nothing, we will try a more extensive startuplist:


Download and install HijackThis using the "self extractor". Run it and select "do a system scan and save the log file". Then copy/paste the contents of the log to a reply

http://www.thespykiller.co.uk/files/hijackthis_sfx.exe


Question: does the issue occur in a Safe Mode boot? Or in a "clean boot":

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;310353
 

wolfee

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Hi again, no the problem did not occur in safe mode. not sure what you mean by "clean boot" but if you mean a start rather than a restart then yes it occurs then too, unless, as I said earlier I alt,ctrl, del at earliest opportunity and then it seems fine. Anyway here is the hjt log:-

Logfile of HijackThis v1.99.1
Scan saved at 04:37:34, on 28/07/2006
Platform: Windows XP SP2 (WinNT 5.01.2600)
MSIE: Internet Explorer v6.00 SP2 (6.00.2900.2180)

Running processes:
D:\WINDOWS\System32\smss.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\winlogon.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\services.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\lsass.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\svchost.exe
D:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\ZoneLabs\vsmon.exe
D:\WINDOWS\Explorer.EXE
D:\WINDOWS\system32\spoolsv.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\taskmgr.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\nvsvc32.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\ZoneLabs\isafe.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\wscntfy.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\RunDll32.exe
D:\Program Files\Thomson\SpeedTouch USB\Dragdiag.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\RUNDLL32.EXE
D:\Program Files\D-Link\AirPlus G\AirGCFG.exe
D:\Program Files\ANI\ANIWZCS2 Service\WZCSLDR2.exe
D:\Program Files\Zone Labs\ZoneAlarm\zlclient.exe
D:\Program Files\Winamp\winampa.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\ctfmon.exe
D:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
D:\Program Files\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe
D:\WINDOWS\system32\wuauclt.exe
D:\PROGRA~1\MOZILL~1\FIREFOX.EXE
D:\Program Files\WinRAR\WinRAR.exe
D:\Program Files\HijackThis.exe

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page = http://www.tiscali.co.uk/broadband
R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Connection Wizard,ShellNext = http://www.tiscali.co.uk/broadband
O2 - BHO: (no name) - {53707962-6F74-2D53-2644-206D7942484F} - D:\Program Files\Spybot - Search & Destroy\SDHelper.dll
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [SiSUSBRG] D:\WINDOWS\SiSUSBrg.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [Cmaudio] RunDll32 cmicnfg.cpl,CMICtrlWnd
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [SpeedTouch USB Diagnostics] "D:\Program Files\Thomson\SpeedTouch USB\Dragdiag.exe" /icon
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [NvCplDaemon] RUNDLL32.EXE D:\WINDOWS\system32\NvCpl.dll,NvStartup
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [nwiz] nwiz.exe /install
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [NvMediaCenter] RUNDLL32.EXE D:\WINDOWS\system32\NvMcTray.dll,NvTaskbarInit
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [D-Link AirPlus G] D:\Program Files\D-Link\AirPlus G\AirGCFG.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [ANIWZCS2Service] D:\Program Files\ANI\ANIWZCS2 Service\WZCSLDR2.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [Zone Labs Client] "D:\Program Files\Zone Labs\ZoneAlarm\zlclient.exe"
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinampAgent] D:\Program Files\Winamp\winampa.exe
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [CTFMON.EXE] D:\WINDOWS\system32\ctfmon.exe
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [MSMSGS] "D:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe" /background
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [Skype] "D:\Program Files\Skype\Phone\Skype.exe" /nosplash /minimized
O9 - Extra button: VC Poker - {40B2063F-DB01-4962-BE63-59435C01283C} - D:\PROGRA~1\VCPOKE~1\client.exe
O9 - Extra button: Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - D:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Windows Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - D:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O23 - Service: CA ISafe (CAISafe) - Computer Associates International, Inc. - D:\WINDOWS\system32\ZoneLabs\isafe.exe
O23 - Service: NVIDIA Display Driver Service (NVSvc) - NVIDIA Corporation - D:\WINDOWS\system32\nvsvc32.exe
O23 - Service: TrueVector Internet Monitor (vsmon) - Zone Labs, LLC - D:\WINDOWS\system32\ZoneLabs\vsmon.exe

cheers

Wolfee
 

wolfee

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Sorry just seen the other link you posted earlier. will look into clean boot now
 
Joined
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Well not a clue in the scanlog.

It's possible the clean boot won't prevent it since in the instructions given you are not disabling any Microsoft services.

You said the problem doesn't occur when you disable automatic updates? Is the computer fully updated? Is the BITS (Background Intelligent Transer) service set to manual? It should be for Automatic updates to work properly.
 

wolfee

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
The problem is with auto updates turned off, I'm updated until feb 06 which is how I intended to leave my system until vista is released.
 

wolfee

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Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Anyways any other ideas you have will be much appreciated, but for now I need some sleep. I have been working on this problem through the night now (oh how time fly's when your having fun) and it is nearly 6.00am here in England now so 3 hours kip and i'll try again tomorrow. Thanks for help

Wolfee
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2000
Messages
45,855
Out of curiosity, with the Windows update service disabled -- if you then manually start it, does it launch the Help and Support windows?

I'm not really clear on what you are reporting in your second post (yes it's normal for there to be multiple svchost.exe entries).

If Auto Updates is turned off, do you get these windows or not -- regardless of whether you ctrl-alt-del? Or does it not happen when updates is enabled?

As for the balloon notifications, there is a way to disable that in the registry if you think that is a part of the problem
 

wolfee

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Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Ok let's recap to try and make myself a little clearer. The problem does not occur with updates enabled. With updates disabled the problem occurs on start up. If I open task manager immediately on start up problem does not occur but if I open task manager once problem has started it does not help as the HelpSvc.exe process continues to multiply untill I restart my pc.

Since last post I have tried:-

system restore back to earliest possible which, as expected, failed to help.
system restored back to current settings.

started pc and just let it run to see what happens - HelpSvc.exe process opens approx 250 times in process list within 5minutes of startup. After 15 - 20 mins HelpSvc.exe processes slowly start closing down. Approx 30 - 40 mins after start up system appears to be ok.

tinkered with settings in options in help and support (yes i can access help and support fine if task manager is open) under change help and support centre options I unchecked the show favourites and show history on navigation bar boxes (dunno why ?) and that seems to have improved things. Now I can start up ok without opening task manager, but now if I try and access help and support I sometimes (but never with task manager open) get the same problem with with HelpSvc.exe opening multiple times. This I can live with as I never use help and support anyway, but am obviously concerned that i'll come across future problems.

Thanks again

Wolfee
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2000
Messages
45,855
Since all these problems center around Help and Support, if you have your XP CD, you might want to try reinstalling it.

The drill is like this. First ensure that "show hidden files" is enabled in Folder Options > View.

Then navigate to the file:

D:\Windows\inf\pchealth.inf

Right click on pchealth.inf and select "install" from the right click menu. Have your XP CD handy.
 

wolfee

Thread Starter
Joined
Jul 27, 2006
Messages
34
Hi again, I have tried last suggestion but when it tries to copy files I keep getting files not found messages. I have tried it with both the disc I used for the installation (xp pro with updates 'till feb 06) and a sp2 disc. Is this problem related or am I doing something wrong?
 
Joined
Dec 9, 2000
Messages
45,855
Try pointing it to d:\windows\servicepackfiles\I386

In fact, look for pchealth.inf in that directory and run it from there.
 
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