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My system is a vanilla desktop circa 2007: Asus PB5 MB, Intel Core 2 Duo, Vista. It worked fine until a Windows update in October; then got "boot mgr missing" errors. I addressed that with helpful advice including a partial (aborted) reinstall. Vista wouldn't let me reinstate user files so I used a Linux boot disk to copy user files from windows.old. Things are almost back to normal except some programs do not appear in menus but can still run (e.g. MS Office). More importantly, neither Firefox nor IE will access the internet. I'm using a 2wire router from my ISP (Bell Canada) with the desktop wired and a wireless laptop. Networking works fine; I can access laptop files from the desktop and vice versa. I can also access the internet from the desktop using the browser on the Linux boot disk, but no internet with Vista, even with Vista firewall turned off (and I get Windows Defender error messages on reboot).

I"m trying to avoid a complete reinstall of all programs. Any advice would be much appreciated.


share|improve this question

a couple of questions...
1)does the wireless actually connect? do you get an ip address?
if the answer is yes move on to 2...if not, uninstall and reinstall wireless drivers and tcp/ip components

2)can you ping the gateway? how about or
if yes on the gateway, continue
if no, go to troubleshooting step from 1)

if yes on continue
if no, you can hit the router, but not the internet......
check default gateway settings, if correct reinstall tcp/ip

if yes on continue
if no, correct your DNS problem

if still not browsing, check proxy settings and full virus scan.
if still not browsing, reinstall browsers.

share|improve this answer
if still not browsing reinstall windows – RobotHumans Nov 14 '10 at 17:26
Thanks for your suggestions, but perhaps I wasn't clear or am misunderstanding your advice. The wireless laptop is running Win7 and works fine, including internet through the router and networking to the desktop. It is the wired desktop that can access the internet through Linux but not through Vista, so there is no issue with wireless drivers or accessing the router. I suspect that it is a Vista/security/firewall issue. Am I wrong? Thanks again! – Hossenfeffer Nov 14 '10 at 18:32
Then skip does wireless actually connect...the rest still holds true...firewall allows outbound on 80 and established return connections by default – RobotHumans Nov 14 '10 at 18:35
Thanks! Pings worked which confirmed internet connection, so then I found the "Web pages never load despite internet access on Vista" question and figured out that AVG was causing the problem. – Hossenfeffer Nov 14 '10 at 19:29
good deal, have a better one – RobotHumans Nov 14 '10 at 20:25

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