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Thread: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    29

    Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    I am noticing one of the weirdest behaviors of Windows Xp on my computer since yesterday. Just before I tried shutting down my computer yesterday, it showed me a BSOD for the first time since I taken this system. It was all of a sudden. I was just leaving for 2 hours hence left the system as it, thought will shut it down when I’ll come back. When I returned after two hours I saw that my system was still rebooting and running scandisk again and again.

    Every time it was getting stuck while in scandisk hence I unplugged the system to shut it down. After few seconds and replugged and booted the system. It again went to scandisk and completed successfully this time. When it booted to the desktop I saw that my desktop is completely empty. There is no taskbar, no start button not even my any desktop icons, completely blank.

    Surprising my keyboard keys are working, mouse cursor is moving and my system is responding. I can lunch task manager by pressing Ctrl + Alt + Del, that’s it. I cannot do any ting else apart from this.

    Now when we normally see such black desktop, the first thing that comes to mind is explorer.exe, right ? I did that. Launched task manager and tried to create a process explorer. exe but it wouldn't start. As far as I know the very last thing I installed on this system was I updated my iTunes to version 8.0. Could that be the reason ?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    57

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons,etc.)

    That could be the reason because iTunes v8 has some driver issues with vista as well (I tried it on my vista system). But there is new iTunes 8 version launched by apple that should work on your system. But before that, in order to fix your desktop problem you should completely remove installed itunes from your system along with Apple Mobile Device support.

    Once it is uninstalled completely, restart your system and see if you got your normal desktop back. If yes, now search iTunes 8 on Apple and download from there.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    29

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    Good suggestion dude, but did you read above that there is nothing on my desktop and I cannot do anything else apart from launching Task Manager. How can go to Add and Remove program to uninstall installed iTunes 8 ?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    58
    You can do it by login in to Safe mode friend. Reboot your system, keep hitting F8, when you see the boot menu, select Safe mode and press Enter. Now uninstall the iTunes from here. If you are (in case) unable to do the same try to restore your system to any earlier Restore point without iTunes.

    Or if you want to do it right from your normal login in (no safe mode), than keep hitting Windows key 10 to 15 times. I am not sure whether it works for every one but it worked for me once in the same situation. Yeah, even I was not having any thing on my desktop, I kept hitting win key in frustration and suddenly I got start pop up.

    Alternatively, as you said you are able to launch task manager, open it, go to new task and type “Control Panel”. It will launch Control Panel. Isn’t it so easy ?

    If you want to restore your system, you can do this as well from task Manager. Go to new task and type “c:\windows\system32\restore\rstrui.exe”.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    I also have the same problem,but even worse.I run Vista.
    The program downloaded showed this:
    Diagnostic Report (1.9.0011.0):
    -----------------------------------------
    WGA Data-->
    Validation Status: Invalid License
    Validation Code: 50

    Cached Validation Code: N/A, hr = 0x80070426
    Windows Product Key: *****-*****-27HYQ-XTKW2-WQD8Q
    Windows Product Key Hash: U8YEZzymoD4DMyaMb32rPrNIS90=
    Windows Product ID: 89578-OEM-7332157-00061
    Windows Product ID Type: 2
    Windows License Type: OEM SLP
    Windows OS version: 6.0.6000.2.00010300.0.0.003
    ID: {27BF4C0E-5876-453D-9B04-9F73C21A1C52}(1)
    Is Admin: Yes
    TestCab: 0x0
    WGA Version: Registered, 1.9.9.1
    Signed By: Microsoft
    Product Name: Windows Vista (TM) Home Premium
    Architecture: 0x00000000
    Build lab: 6000.vista_ldr.090805-0102
    TTS Error: M:20091223133218966-
    Validation Diagnostic:
    Resolution Status: N/A

    WgaER Data-->
    ThreatID(s): N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    WGA Notifications Data-->
    Cached Result: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    File Exists: No
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    WgaTray.exe Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    WgaLogon.dll Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    OGA Notifications Data-->
    Cached Result: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    OGAExec.exe Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    OGAAddin.dll Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    OGA Data-->
    Office Status: 100 Genuine
    Microsoft Office Home and Student 2007 - 100 Genuine
    OGA Version: N/A, 0x80070002
    Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Office Diagnostics: 025D1FF3-364-80041010_025D1FF3-229-80041010_025D1FF3-230-1_025D1FF3-517-80040154_025D1FF3-237-80040154_025D1FF3
    -238-2_025D1FF3-244-80070002_025D1FF3-258-3_E2AD56EA-765-d003_E2AD56EA-766-0_E2AD56EA-134-80004005_70AFE6BE-
    656-80070057_E2AD56EA-815-80070057

    Browser Data-->
    Proxy settings: N/A
    User Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 7.0; Win32)
    Default Browser: C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe
    Download signed ActiveX controls: Prompt
    Download unsigned ActiveX controls: Disabled
    Run ActiveX controls and plug-ins: Allowed
    Initialize and script ActiveX controls not marked as safe: Disabled
    Allow scripting of Internet Explorer Webbrowser control: Disabled
    Active scripting: Allowed
    Script ActiveX controls marked as safe for scripting: Allowed

    File Scan Data-->
    File Mismatch: C:\Windows\system32\kernel32.dll[6.0.6000.16820]


    Licensing Data-->
    Software Licensing service is not running.

    HWID Data-->
    HWID Hash Current: MAAAAAEAAAABAAEAAgABAAAAAwABAAEAJJT2/eRzYsFUVeJs8vQIyoYarFYzkcwx

    OEM Activation 1.0 Data-->
    N/A

    OEM Activation 2.0 Data-->
    BIOS valid for OA 2.0: yes
    Windows marker version: 0x20000
    OEMID and OEMTableID Consistent: yes
    BIOS Information:
    ACPI Table Name OEMID Value OEMTableID Value
    APIC HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    FACP HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    HPET HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    MCFG HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    OEMB HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    GSCI HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    SLIC HPQOEM SLIC-CPC
    SSDT HPQOEM SLIC-CPC

    So can anyone please help me?I cant access anything except Windows Explorer.Not even the Task Manager.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    There are some ways to solve this problem.
    - First if u want to see desktop, just press Ctrl+alt+del to get task manager
    then add new task, then press brows, the choose what you want, some time
    when you write control panel in new task, the problem will solve temproray.
    - Second way, you have make checking using cd of windows by using this commandL
    CHKDSK /R
    -Third way , formatting you pc.!!

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    thank you. this helped. :) God bless

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    2

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    Hi, I was having a similar problem! I have tried opening in all the safe mode options and which ever one i select I cant do a single thing but move my mouse. I cant open explorer or task manager. I was able to before to open internet etc but not it doesnt even show my desktop wallpaper, its just the hp blue screen. please help! What can I do? I cant open control panel or anything to run scans or cmd.exe. :(
    Last edited by Raj; 11-09-2011 at 11:27 AM. Reason: Abusive words deleted...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Posts
    122

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    This is because your explorer.exe is corrupted. And the common reason for that is virus. You can test the same by click on File > New. In the box type explorer.exe. If it appears and goes back fast then it is corrupted and only way to fix it is by installing clean Windows back again. Anyhow you can fix the same if you can access your Windows directory. In C:\Windows the application explorer.exe is located. You just need to rename this file in any name example mydesktop.exe. Then modify the registry entry by typing regedit in Task Manager > New > regedit. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\Current Version\Winlogon. In this on the right side look for Shell. Open it and rename explorer.exe to mydesktop.exe.. Reboot and try back.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    2

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    Hey, I renamed the exe then restarted my pc but when I went back there it was named back to explorer.exe so not sure if I missed a step here. How do i get a clean version of windows? Or what is best way to fix this? Thanks

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    996

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by notpcsavvy View Post
    Hey, I renamed the exe then restarted my pc but when I went back there it was named back to explorer.exe so not sure if I missed a step here. How do i get a clean version of windows? Or what is best way to fix this? Thanks
    You can do one thing, download TweakUI from here, install it, click Start>Run, and type in TWEAKUI now click ok, in the window that pops up, click on Repair, now click on the down arrow in the right hand pane, make sure Rebuild Icons is selected, now click Repair Now, Click OK, then Reboot, all should be well then.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    explorer.exe is corrupted.
    And the common reason for that is virus. You can test the same by click on File > New. In the box type explorer.exe. If it appears and goes back fast then it is corrupted and only way to fix it is by installing clean Windows back again. Anyhow you can fix the same if you can access your Windows directory.
    In C:\Windows the application explorer.exe is located.
    You just need to rename this file in any name example mydesktop.exe.
    Then modify the registry entry by typing regedit in Task Manager > New > regedit. HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\Current Version\Winlogon.
    In this on the right side look for Shell.
    Open it and rename explorer.exe to mydesktop.exe..
    this worked after we discovered we had a Trojan,
    restore point NoGo,
    SP3-No help,
    creating another hard drive from another replica workstation, and copying over
    Data,
    Best to keep a ghost backup or Acronis if you can on external HD or DL-DVD-RW,

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    thanx for that wonderful answer sir..cause i got also problem with the start task manager now my problem has solve..thanx very much

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    1

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    Thanks for all the previous posts. They helped me get my XP system on the air again. We got hit with four different Trojans. MS Security got rid of them but the damage was done. The Task Manager was "Disabled by System Administrator". That was cute. AVG was completely eliminated. It's folder/directory was gone.

    To fix it I created a new administrator identity and it has access to all programs but we haven't figured out how to access the files in the My Documents folder of the original "Administrator". All system links and files belonging to the original Administrator have apparently been trashed.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Posts
    254

    Re: Desktop not showing anything (no start button, toolbar, icons, etc.)

    For that you will need to rebuild explorer.exe. This file is responsible for fixing your desktop icons. If this is corrupted your screen can see nothing. Explorer.exe can fixed by restoring system. If this does not work you will need to re-install Windows system back again. Explorer.exe is your desktop manager. There is no way to fix this if it is corrupted. There are some third party desktop manager that you can also use.

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