Unable to access Internet and all programs from start menu; How to get rid of a virus on windows xp

I just recently was given a hand-me-down computer (compaq I tthink) so I'm not clear as to all the fancy stuff as far as processor ect....but I do know it has windows xp pro. Anyways, a friend was using my computer and for some reason felt the need to down load some program called 7-zip. Now my computer is screwed.... From the start menu > all programs, everything dissapeared! And I can access the system restore in both regular boot and safe mode but the window stays empty, it never actually let's me have the option to use it. Oh, and I can't get online in either regular boot or safe mod either,,, what can I do?


Original Title: How to get rid of a virus on windows xp proremove a virus from windows xp pro




1.    Why do you think the computer is infected with virus? Do you see any unwanted pop-ups or strange behavior of any programs?

2.     Have you made any changes to the computer prior to the issue?

3.    Have you run any online scanners to remove the infections?

4.    Which is the antivirus program installed on the computer?


Method 1: Run a virus scan on your computer.


Note: If any infections are detected during the scan, there might be a chance of data loss as the infected files will be deleted.


Method 2: Safe mode with networking


Step 1: Check if you can browse the Internet successfully in Safe Mode with networking.

Safe Mode with Networking starts Windows in safe mode and includes the network drivers and services needed to access the Internet or other computers on your network.


A description of the Safe Mode Boot options in Windows XP


Step 2: Place the computer in clean boot state to know which application is causing this issue.

To help troubleshoot error messages and other issues, you can start Windows by using a minimal set of drivers and startup programs. This kind of startup is known as a "clean boot." A clean boot helps eliminate software conflicts. 

Putting your system in clean boot state helps in identifying if any third party applications or startup items are causing the issue. If yes, you may have to contact the program manufacturer for any updates or uninstall and re-install the program. 


Step 1: Follow the steps given in the link below to do the same:

How to configure Windows XP to start in a "clean boot" state

Note: After troubleshooting, make sure to put the computer to start as usual as mentioned here:


Step 2: To configure Windows to use a Normal startup state

After you used the clean boot to resolve your problem, you can follow these steps to configure Windows XP to start normally.

  1. Click Start, and then click Run.
  2. Type msconfig, and then click OK. The System Configuration Utility dialog box is displayed.
  3. Click the General tab, click Normal Startup - load all device drivers and services, and then click OK.
  4. When you are prompted, click Restart to restart the computer.


Method 3:


Create a new User Account and check if you are able to access the program in start menu.  

Try logging in with another user account with administrator rights and then create a new user account.

Refer these links for more information:


How to create and configure user accounts in Windows XP



How to copy data from a corrupted user profile to a new profile in Windows XP




Hope this helps.

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Question Info

Last updated March 26, 2018 Views 190 Applies to: