Q: Loading / frozen network and wireless icons, Windows taskbar and desktop frozen, does not respond

Hi All,

I have a strange issue. I turned off the computer on Sep 3 evening, everything was working perfectly fine. On Sep 4 when I started it, and after the desktop loaded, I noticed that the wireless signal icon near the clock shows the round loading indicator. I waited a little bit, hoping it will complete acquiring the network. However, the icon stayed that way with the loading indicator on. I moved the mouse cursor using the trackpad, but it didn't move immediately, only after about 10 seconds it started moving smoothly. Then again, the mouse cursor would freeze for 5-10 seconds from time to time. I tried clicking the Start menu icon, but as soon as I hovered the mouse cursor over it, the cursor turned into a round loading indicator, and clicking on the Start icon didn't open the menu. I tried launching applications that had shortcuts on the desktop -- none of them started. Right-clicking on the Taskbar to bring the menu to launch the Task Manager didn't work, the menu didn't come up. Pressing Ctrl+Shift+Esc to launch the Task Manager didn't accomplish anything. I put the computer aside and waited. After about 10 minutes the Task Manager window showed up. After another 3 minutes, it loaded the list of processes. I switched to the Performance tab and noticed that the memory usage is normal, around 1 GB (I have a total of 5 GB on my system). The CPU load was normal, around 10%, with one random CPU spike up to 100%. I could drag the Task Manager window around the screen smoothly. 

I rebooted into the Safe Mode with Networking, and the system immediately connected to Wi-Fi and I could browse the web as usual. In Safe Mode I went to MS Config, and turned off all startup programs, clicked to hide all Microsoft services, and disabled the rest of the services. Booted into normal mode -- and again, the wireless icon showed the progress/loading indicator, and the system seemed completely frozen, including the Taskbar and the Desktop, just as before. Thinking that it might be network related, I rebooted into Safe Mode and disabled both the Ethernet and the Wireless adapters. Booted into Normal mode -- the same problem, the system is unusable, even though this time there was no wireless or wired network icon. I believe it is a software issue. While it could be some virus, I rule that out as I normally don't download and install any applications. I haven't installed any software manually in the recent weeks, and the only auto-update in the past week or two is the Firefox update to version 6. 

Unfortunately I cannot go to the last good configuration as my System Restore was disabled, so I don't have any restore points. 

Have you encountered anything like that? Can it be some Windows Update component? A virus? Any help / any tips are greatly appreciated. Thank you!

My system is relatively fast:
Dell Studio 14z
CPU: P8600
GPU: GeForce 9400M 256MB

Triple boot:
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit), legitimate, came with the laptop
Ubuntu 9.04
Mac OS X Snow Leopard

The system worked in this configuration for more than a year already, and I haven't performed any system-wide changes.

Thank you!



What is the make of the wireless adapter?


I would suggest you try to disable the wireless adapter service (eg: intel service if intel is the manufacturer of the wireless card ) from services tab in MSconfig and check if it helps.

Refer the below steps:

a.       Click on ‘Start’.

b.      Click on ‘Run’.

c.       Type ‘msconfig’ and click on ‘OK’.

d.      Go to ‘Services tab’ and disable the wireless adapter service.

e.      Click on ‘OK’

f.        Click on ‘Apply’.

g.       Restart the computer.

Did this solve your problem?

Sorry this didn't help.

2 people were helped by this reply


I have a Dell Wireless N 1515 card, and as far as I know it does not have a dedicated service. Besides, I tried disabling absolutely all non-Microsoft services already, and unfortunately it didn't help.

Did this solve your problem?

Sorry this didn't help.

Question Info

Views: 2,392 Last updated: June 26, 2018 Applies to: