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Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

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Old 29-01-2008
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 36
Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

There are some workstations in my network. It can be around 5 to 8. some are used frequently while some are turned off. I need some help here to fix the problem I am facing due to explorer.exe. In few pc there is exactly the same issue. Explorer.exe crashes on its own. It is common in around 4 pc I think. There were some virus popup also. I need some help here to find out the cause of this problem. I am having AVG in all the systems which looks to be decent to deal with virus problems.

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Old 29-01-2008
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 1,365
Just do this. Hit Ctrl-Alt-Del. This will load Task manager. In that go the process section. There look for EXPLORER.EXE. Click on that and click end processor. Then go File and click on New Task. In that type explorer.exe and hit enter. That will reload the desktop. Restart your pc once again and login back. Scan your pc under safe mode and look for any kind of infection if located or not. If there are virus then it is necessary that you must keep on scanning the same until it is cleared completely.
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Old 08-02-2008
Join Date: Feb 2006
Posts: 335
I am having a huge network. There are more than 40 computes and 100+ users. But among them handful of PC's are getting the same kind of problem. I started getting the reports on it from last month. And this appeared when there were series of Windows updates. Now there are some pc which are constantly giving the same error update again and again. I do not understand how multiple can give same kind of problem again and again so instantly. Looks like some kind of virus issue.
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Old 20-02-2008
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 110
It is a virus issue. You have to scan your pc first with some good antivirus. AVG does not offers you complete protection. It is essential that you must download a good antivirus like Norton or other and scan your system with that. I had gone with the same kind of issue and I replaced my antivirus which resolved the problem. Things looks to be working fine. There is no issue at all.
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Old 15-09-2008
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2
I had the same problem with vista, and i dont know if it works on xp but do this:
Open up your registry editor
  • Go in these folders: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/MICROSOFT/WINDOWS NT/CURRENT VERSION/ then click on WinLogon in the right window, look for Shell
  • Ddouble click it and in the value data box delete whats there and put this: explorer.exe
  • Restart your computer and there you go
I to am having this problem on a few machines. I thought about putting explorer.exe in startup but when explorer actually does run correctly the stupid thing loads windows explorer. The other problem is that the run calls actually go after the shell calls explorer. I also have deleted explorer.exe from the shell and put it back in hopes that would work. We are running Windows XP SP2 with Symantec Antivirus 10.1 Group Policy Active Directory and manage 500 plus machines. Anyone else running similar that is having the problem. Maybe if we try to see what we have alike we can get it figured out.
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Old 23-10-2008
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 148
Re: Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

Did you tried system restore. I am sure that will be enough to fix the problem. There can be some issue with windows registry which can be restored by running system restore. It is capable of restoring the files and settings when needed. I did this when I got the same issue and the problem was resolved. There was no issue at all. Things looks to be working fine here until my system finally stopped working due to a virus bug.
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Old 24-10-2008
Join Date: Sep 2004
Posts: 140
Download FixShell. This is a nice script which will fix Explorer problem. You can download the same from web. Try using Remove-it software to wipe out any recently installed malicious software. While Task manager can give you a bit information on the performance. If the usage is high then it means there are some kind of infection in your pc. If nothing works then the only option left is to run a clean windows installation which will wipe out any existing infection from the system.
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Old 27-01-2009
Join Date: Jan 2009
Posts: 2
after exhautive searches for a remidy i have found this easy simple step,, dowload malwarebytes and run.. for the past 3 days my explorer would not load, only a blank desktop,, running task manager i was able to get explorer to load infrequently. it would flash on then go away then come back, i tried to re-install windows xp home ( no avail) tried different virus scans ( i use avg free, and also use kapersky online scan and trend house call, only kapersky found 2 trojans)
after downloading malwarebytes and running a scan i found an additional 27 errors. run claener and then ran ccleaner to remove rest of wrong reg entries.
upon reboot, everything is back to as it should be,
will now try to add the log from malwarebytes scan.

Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware 1.33
Database version: 1698
Windows 5.1.2600 Service Pack 2

1/27/2009 8:19:30 AM
mbam-log-2009-01-27 (08-19-30).txt

Scan type: Quick Scan
Objects scanned: 67697
Time elapsed: 6 minute(s), 5 second(s)

Memory Processes Infected: 0
Memory Modules Infected: 2
Registry Keys Infected: 31
Registry Values Infected: 1
Registry Data Items Infected: 2
Folders Infected: 16
Files Infected: 31

Memory Processes Infected:
(No malicious items detected)

Memory Modules Infected:
C:\WINDOWS\system32\iifGyVPF.dll (Trojan.Vundo.H) -> Delete on reboot.
C:\WINDOWS\system32\khfCULbY.dll (Trojan.Vundo) -> Delete on reboot.

Registry Keys Infected:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Browser Helper Objects\{90cc9550-c8c0-4588-b995-1de68652df4d} (Trojan.Vundo.H) -> Delete on reboot.
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{90cc9550-c8c0-4588-b995-1de68652df4d} (Trojan.Vundo.H) -> Delete on reboot.
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{6d794cb4-c7cd-4c6f-bfdc-9b77afbdc02c} (Trojan.Vundo) -> Delete on reboot.
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Ext\Stats\{6d794cb4-c7cd-4c6f-bfdc-9b77afbdc02c} (Trojan.Vundo) -> Quarantined and deleted successfully.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Browser Helper Objects\{6d794cb4-c7cd-4c6f-bfdc-9b77afbdc02c} (Trojan.Vundo) -> Delete on reboot.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\Notify\khfculby (Trojan.Vundo) -> Delete on reboot.

Running the Malwarbytes' got rid of the explorer.exe problem as well as 118 infections

By the way I also disabled the system restore before Running the Malwarbytes' then rebooted and renabled it again this was so the infections didnt get stored in system restore for the next time I do a scan.....

MBAM is (often) the bomb.
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Old 06-09-2009
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 154
I think this is a virus bug. You cannot do much in that. You will need to simply format your pc if the crashing is frequent and if the system is connected on the lan it will spread among other pc also. Try installing Malwarebytes in your pc. This is one of the best tool to deal with problem like this. You can simply use the same to deal with infections. But if that does not work then the only option left is to completely format the pc and install everything back from scratch.
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Old 09-04-2010
Join Date: Apr 2010
Posts: 1
Re: Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

Im troubleshooting the same problem for my company. We have around 40 laptops and on average 1 or 2 machines fail to load explorer when they are rebooted every couple of days. We are currently using the launching explorer from the run command which works, but is not a long term solution. Reading your posts has given me an idea which i will try testing today, but i just wanted to mention a few things. A lot of people are saying this is a very intermittent problem, i.e. it only happens once in 10 reboots. Doesn't that rule out registry? I have checked the registry and all is fine, however id expect this otherwise explorer would fail to load every time. There are no errors in my logs, so i am actively looking at ways to increase the logging of the process. I would imagine it is a timing issue, maybe something is loading before explorer and blocking it access to something it needs to boot? The network aspect is interesting. I have had one of the laptops on my desk and rebooted over 100 times, and haven’t seen the issue. In our lab they are connected in a Workgroup configuration so maybe this has something to do with it.

I would like to monitor the Windows API calls and confirm whether the process starts - runs and then crashes, or never actually starts successfully. The problem here, is adding a kernel debugger slows up the process, hence removing the possible timing issue from occurring. The laptops are custom machines running Windows embedded SP3. I agree this could open up the possibilities of missing dependent files etc, but must remember this is a very intermittent problem and there are machines with exactly the same load and config which have never experienced this problem. I am looking at external sources as the culprit, maybe network traffic during the logon procedure causing a timing issue. If anyone has any other ideas or knows any logging features or applications that might help, please feel free to post here and let us know.
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Old 29-12-2010
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1
Its generic but block explorer.exe on taskmgr start explorer.exe in startup programs folder with a short cut or get a virtual machine and boot a os on it
go to the file and send it out to the main os via email or orb or w ever thean replace it. it works had to replace osk and explorer.exe & with file recovery checker
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Old 01-03-2011
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 1
Re: Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

Here on my network, we are experiencing the same issue. Our current resolution (which is just to get users back in action) is to have them log off and back on with ctrl-alt-del, then explorer.exe loads and everything works. Here's the interesting part that was mentioned by user: 03029174. He/she mentioned that there must be a network component since it is not happening on the test machine in a WORKGROUP, and only on machines in the domain. I support this theory because this issue is not soley limited to desktop-loading at logon. It is also happening with the opening of network drives. Users are trying to open their network drives and are sporadically being prompted to choose a program to open it with. We have to prompt them through the steps of opening explorer.exe from the Windows folder. The interesting thing about this is that the checkbox to always use the program is grayed out and cannot be selected. I too am searching for a resolution and found this thread. I thought adding my piece might help with a clue.
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Old 02-03-2011
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 861
Re: Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

You can try this and see if that is able to help you. Just press alt + ctrl +del and click file > new task and there type cmd and press enter. Now from the command prompt, type sfc /scannow and let that to perform its action. Other than this, you can press F8 key while Windows XP is loading on your computer and then choose restore to last known good configuration. I hope that this will help you to solve the problem.
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Old 24-06-2011
Join Date: Jun 2011
Posts: 1
Re: Explorer.exe fails to load at startup

When was the last time it worked?
using xp operating system:
Go to Start
>accessories>system tools>system restore>retore to an earlier time,
Select calendar date.

Easy as american pie!

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