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Hi there super tech people. You've been recommended to me.

I cannot access mostly (but not entirely) HTTPS sites with IE or Firefox. This happened Feb 14th. Took 6 days to realise these sites can be accessed via a lesser known browser called "Opera". So all good now. Can you tell me/suggest a solution as to IE & Firefox?
Is it a virus specific to these 2 browsers? Another person in the home has a laptop with none of these problems.
Cheers & many thankx in advance.

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An absolute pleasure to talk with, very friendly and polite:)
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Last Post by DimaYasny
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ipconfig /all

Ummm...do you mean I click on "Run" then type cmd to bring up the black page. After this, type in ipconfig /all?
Sorry. This must be tedious for you, but I really know next to nothing about computer technology.
Thank you.

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exactly like you said - start > run > cmd > ipconfig /all

copy and paste the output here

Hi & thanks. Now I understand.
I get this:

Microsoft Windows XP [Version 5.1.2600]
(C) Copyright 1985-2001 Microsoft Corp.

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen>ipconfig /all

Windows IP Configuration

Host Name . . . . . . . . . . . . : royal-4f20c34c0
Primary Dns Suffix . . . . . . . :
Node Type . . . . . . . . . . . . : Mixed
IP Routing Enabled. . . . . . . . : No
WINS Proxy Enabled. . . . . . . . : No

Ethernet adapter Local Area Connection:

Connection-specific DNS Suffix . :
Description . . . . . . . . . . . : SiS 900-Based PCI Fast Ethernet Adap
ter
Physical Address. . . . . . . . . : 00-0B-6A-62-07-E6
Dhcp Enabled. . . . . . . . . . . : Yes
Autoconfiguration Enabled . . . . : Yes
IP Address. . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.1
Subnet Mask . . . . . . . . . . . : 255.255.255.0
Default Gateway . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
DHCP Server . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
DNS Servers . . . . . . . . . . . : 192.168.1.254
Lease Obtained. . . . . . . . . . : Friday, 22 February 2008 10:33:43 PM

Lease Expires . . . . . . . . . . : Saturday, 23 February 2008 10:33:43
AM

C:\Documents and Settings\Stephen>

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Don't know if the 2 are connected, but I can't Add or Remove programs either.
I get:
An exception occurred when trying to run
"C:\WINDOWS\system32\shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL
"C:\WINDOWS\system32\appwiz.cpl,"Add or Remove Programs"

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I think you might have a virus there.
but in any case
1. go to c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc and clear out the hosts file so that the only record in there is
"localhost 127.0.0.1"
2. go into the NIC properties and set up your ISPs DNS addresses there. If you don't know them, use OpenDNS 208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220

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I think you might have a virus there.
but in any case
1. go to c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc and clear out the hosts file so that the only record in there is
"localhost 127.0.0.1"
2. go into the NIC properties and set up your ISPs DNS addresses there. If you don't know them, use OpenDNS 208.67.222.222 and 208.67.220.220

Hello again.
Followed your steps up to "localhost" which I couldn't find. Instead re-installed windows XP Service Pack 2. Now I can Add and Remove Programs (phew!). Original HTTPS problem still exists with IE and Firefox (but not Opera) though.

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strange stuff. check your firewalls and the router for not letting port 443 out

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Very helpful, patient person for working with me to solve this problem.
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Good news. Everything is now working again.
I can't explain it. Didn't get as far as checking port 443 access. Did, however, delete a trojan (but the date on that was 22.2.08 & problems were from 14.2.08). Then allowed windows updates.
I am truly grateful for the time you have spent with me Dima Yasny in working through this issue. Many thanks to you & good luck.
Kindest regards, Logo.

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