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ggeinec

Firefox, IE11, MBAE won't open

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Starting today Firefox and IE11 will not open on my laptop. They worked fine when I last shut down the laptop a couple of days ago.

If I try to launch Firefox or IE11 I get the spinning circle for a few seconds then nothing, not even the usual pop up from MBAE that precedes opening of the browsers. I checked the task bar notification window and the icon for MBAE is not there. If I try to launch MBAE from the Start Menu it does not open and I get no error message. At this point if I go to Task Manager I see in Processes that Firefox and IE are listed once each, MBAE is listed twice, once using 128k of memory and again using 4108k of memory.

 

I run  the latest MBAM and the latest ESET NOD 32 antivirus, both successfully update their signature files, both are listed in Task Manager. I have Rhapsody, it is able to connect and stream music. However some software that has built in check for updates is not able to complete the check when I try that.

 

Hard restart does not change any of the above. I had not installed any software or updates during the session before this behavior started.

I’m running: Win7 Home Premium SP1 with Windows Updates current  to what Windows Secrets recommends; MBAE Premium 1.08.1.1189, MBAM Premium latest version, Firefox 45.0.1, IE11 11.0.9600.18230, ESET NOD32 9.0.375.0.

Any ideas what is blocking the browsers and MBAE from opening?

 

Thanks!

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I also noticed that on my laptop even though with MBAM I have Malware Protection and Malicious Website Protection checked in Settings, on the Dashboard for Real-Time Protection it shows No protection. And Adobe Acrobat also is among the applications that won't open.

I'm running all the software and OS's mentioned so far on two other desktops that aren't having the issues I'm having with my laptop.

Help!

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Hi, @ggeinec, and :welcome:

Have you tried restarting your laptop a couple of times?  If so, then you will probably need to run some check programs, I'll gather the links and post after you try rebooting.

The reason I say this is that the last Windows 10 Insider Preview build had a bad habit of having explorer.exe crashing, and when it did, the MBAE symptoms you describe happened to me as well.  I had to reboot, and sometimes more than once, in order for everything to work again.  Also, I know of a couple of programs that cause explorer.exe to restart, one of them being the installation of Google Drive desktop client.  If you have any software that may have updated that caused explorer.exe to restart, that may be the culprit, and a reboot or two may help.

Just in case, you might just go ahead and perform a shutdown and let the laptop sit for about 30 seconds, although a standard reboot (restart) should work just fine.

Please post back whether it works or not.

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Hi, and thanks for responding. I have rebooted several times over the past couple of days with no improvement or change in the behavior described above. I should mention again that I have Windows 7 Home Premium, not Windows 10. The new discovery that has me particularly concerned is that MBAM (not MBAE) shows that real-time protection is not on even though I have it checked to be on in the settings. I am wondering now if something got onto the laptop and has disabled MBAE and MBAM and the browsers . . .

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I can also add that multiple manual scans with the latest versions of MBAM and ESET NOD32 with the latest database signature updates show 0 threats.

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I am attaching the contents of the MBAE folder but I cannot get FRST to run. It never goes past the opening window with the message 'Backing up registry, this should take a few seconds...' at the top. I have the correct version of FRST and I'm right-clicking on the executable to Run as Administrator. I have disabled ESET NOD32 and MBAM.No luck with FRST.

Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit.zip

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6 minutes ago, ggeinec said:

I am attaching the contents of the MBAE folder but I cannot get FRST to run. It never goes past the opening window with the message 'Backing up registry, this should take a few seconds...' at the top. I have the correct version of FRST and I'm right-clicking on the executable to Run as Administrator. I have disabled ESET NOD32 and MBAM.No luck with FRST.

Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit.zip

Hmm, that's odd about FRST.
I've never heard of that error.

Well, perhaps the other logs will provide enough data to assist @pbust with troubleshooting your system.

Thanks for your patience,

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Thanks for the logs.

 

I don't see anything strange in the logs.

Try a fresh re-install (with reboot in-between uninstall and re-install) and let us know if the problem persists.

 

 

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So I uninstalled MBAE (and removed C:\Program Files\Malwarebytes Anti-Exploit, and Program Data), rebooted, reinstalled MBAE. MBAE started and the icon showed up in the task bar notification Window. I was able to open MBAE and to get both Firefox and IE11 to open. But I noticed MBAM was not running real-time and showed no real-time protection even though the appropriate settings are turned on. So I rebooted again and I'm back to where MBAE doesn't run and I cannot open browsers again.  :(

I'm wondering now if I should start down the path of System Restores . . .

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I repeated the process of uninstalling, rebooting, reinstalling. Again MBAE and the browsers will open as long as I don't reboot. If I reboot I return to the behavior where none of them will run. It looks like something is blocking MBAE and MBAM from starting. Task Manager does show a mbae.exe *32 process running using 124k of memory but the icon is not in the task bar notification window and I cannot get it to open from the Start menu. MBAM has nothing showing in Task Manager and no icon in the task bar notification window but I can manually launch it from the Start menu. It looks like something is preventing MBAE and MBAM from opening after reboot.

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1 hour ago, ggeinec said:

 It looks like something is preventing MBAE and MBAM from opening after reboot.

Do you have Win Patrol or some other type of "startup monitor" running?

Is that an ESET NOD 32 feature?

<just curious>

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Also, do you notice anything causing your explorer.exe to crash and / or restart every time you boot?  The fact that MBAE is running in Task manager but not the Notification area (system tray) is exactly the same behavior I experienced as above, but with FRST and also MBAM not running correctly, you may need to do a little digging.

@AdvancedSetup What do you think, time to run a Malware check?

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Well odd that logs tools won't run either. That to me would seem to indicate something is somehow blocking normal operations.

Please run a full disk check. Click on START and type in CMD.EXE and when it shows on the menu right click over it and select "Run as administrator"

Then type in the following exactly and press the Enter key. It will say that it cannot lock the drive. Press the Y key then the Enter key to say yes to run it after a restart. Then restart the computer and let the disk check run. It could take hours to complete but let it complete

CHKDSK  C:  /R

Then see if you're able to run the following logs for us after the disk check runs.

Please read the following and post back the 3 requested logs.
 
Diagnostic Logs
 
Thank you

 

 

 

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daledoc1, John L. Galt, AdvancedSetup - thanks for your responses!

@daledoc1   I don't have WinPatrol nor anything similar and it doesn't appear that ESET NOD32 has a startup monitoring feature.

@John L. Galt    silly question, but how would I know that explorer.exe is crashing or restarting every time I reboot? I don't see anything obvious.

But I just spent some time in Windows Event Viewer. No MBAE messages but some MBAM.

In Windows Logs > System I found the following Errors occurred during the booting up process in the following order but not together, only the MBAM error is new to the current stuation:

The SMI Helper Driver (smihlp2) failed to start due to the following error: The system cannot find the file specified.

The MCSTRM servic efailed to start due to the following error: The system cannot find the file specified.

The CAM service terminated unexpectedly.

A timeout (30000 milliseconds) was reached while waiting for a transaction response from the MBAMService service.


The following informational messages started occurring on 03/26/2016 in the following order but only the first two together:

File System Filter 'luafv'(6.1, 2009-07-13T19:26:13.000000000Z) has successfully loaded and registered with Filter Manager.

File System Filter 'MBAMProtector'(6.1, 2015-08-11T13:35:19.000000000Z) has successfully loaded and registered with Filter Manager.

File System Filter 'MBAMProtector'(Version 6.1, 2015-08-11 T13:35:19.000000000Z) unloaded successfully.

File System Filter 'mbamchameleon'(6.1, 2016-01-27T19:48:35.000000000Z) has successfully loaded and registered with Filter Manager.

File System Filter 'MBAMProtector'(6.1, 2015-08-11T13:35:19.000000000Z) has successfully loaded and registered with Filter Manager.

File System Filter 'mbamchameleon'(6.1, 2016-01-27T19:48:35.000000000Z) has successfully loaded and registered with Filter Manager.
 
Mbamchameleon Failed to obtain file name information - C000000D
(looks like hundreds of these in sequence over a 10 minute period, at which point it looks like I shut down the laptop)

After this first time the File System Filter messages appear at each bootup and the Mbamchameleon Failed still appear but only in small clusters.

@AdvancedSetup Thanks for your instructions. Before I start, does it make any difference that I'm running an SSD and not a HDD?

Thanks!

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So, it looks like this laptop is well and truly hosed. I cannot type anything into the cmd.exe window. I run from a standard account and I launched cmd.exe with Run as Administrator as requested but I cannot type anything into the cmd.exe window. And when I click on the x to exit it takes about 15 seconds to close. If I log on as Administrator and launch cmd.exe I still cannot type anything into the window. I also noticed that since these problems started a few days ago when I log off I routinely get a flash of the 'waiting for processes (or whatever it says) to close' screen. I never used to get that before.

At this point I'm thinking I probably need to either try Windows Restore to roll back, but they may already be infected with whatever is causing all of this, or start over with the recovery and reinstall disks that came with the laptop. :(

What do you think?

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A system restore point should not cause any harm. It will either work or it won't. It's possible the hard drive might be having trouble and starting to fail.

Give the System Restore and try and let us know how that goes. If it won't run or won't complete then try tapping the F8 key during a restart and see if you can get into the advanced repair section.

List of possible methods of repair

https://forums.malwarebytes.org/topic/125290-computer-resources-for-repair-and-management/

 

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@AdvancedSetup  Thanks for the encouragement and the link to additional resources. You probably won't hear from me for a day or two or three while I try to find time to work through this. But I will be back with a progress report. Thanks to you, John L. Galt, and daledoc1 for your help.

Edited by ggeinec
clarification

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Ok, so I did a system restore to March 11, the last point when everything on this laptop was still working as it should. It appears this fixed all the problems I was having, mentioned above. So far, after a couple of days of using the laptop everything is back to normal. Now I just have to reinstall the Windows Updates that were wiped out by the system restore.

I'm still puzzled about what caused the problems since I hadn't done anything on this laptop other than install a handful of WinUpdates. We'll see how it goes when I reinstall them.

Thanks again @daledoc1 @John L. Galt and @AdvancedSetup for your time and your help.

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