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So I'm running into problems surfing the web here. I've got Firefox 5, Google Chrome version 12.0.742.122 and Internet Explorer (I'm having trouble locating the version number in this version X_X), and I'm having serious issues with all of them.

I started with Firefox, around 2 days ago it started just randomly crashing while surfing the web, there was no real pattern to it nor had I just updated/installed anything. It got so bad that sometimes it would crash, bringing the Mozilla crash reporter up, and as soon as I hit the 'restart firefox' button, it would crash so quickly that the crash reporter never cleared the screen. I then went to IE, which was somewhat better but suffered from more or less the same problem, but this time when it crashed it pointed to some file related to the Flash plug-in, giving me my first lead. I then switched to Chrome which actually worked fine for a few days but then that started acting up too. It wouldn't crash or anything but pages would refuse to load and I'd get the screen that says 'There was a problem loading this page'. Sometimes a page would load half-way before bringing that screen up, and other times it wouldn't load at all.

I went back to Firefox, and tried disabling the Flash plug-in from the about:addons page, and it actually seems to work; I've been able to go almost 30 minutes now without a crash, but I can't view any Flash-enabled pages (like youtube), and for some reason the Add-ons Manager in Firefox now refuses to load (don't tell me that it's a flash page) so I can't figure out how to re-enable the Flash plugin again.

My first question is how do I get the add-ons manager in Firefox to work again? It's just stuck there with a little box that says 'Loading'. The flash plugin is my biggest suspect here, but I can't confirm that it's the cause of the problem until I can re-enable it. My second question is, am I the only one this is happening to, i.e has this happened to anyone else?

This is driving me insane, I can't get ANYTHING done with all of the browsers acting up like this.

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Have you tried re-installing flash? – soandos Aug 2 '11 at 2:29
up vote 0 down vote accepted

This sounds like it could be any number of things.

I am not sure it is Flash player because IE uses an Active X version of it, and the others use the Plug-in version of it, but it is still very easy to uninstall both and then re-install them, so worth trying. I would also use the Flash uninstaller and follow the directions in the link.

Another thing in common could be file system corruption, so try running chkdsk /f a few times at an elevated command prompt.

One last thing that could be in common is Windows file corruption, so run sfc /scannow at an elevated command prompt. This will check to make sure that critical Windows files are intact, and not corrupt.

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As soon as I had uninstalled flash and restarted the computer, it wouldn't boot, said it was missing the System32 folder (or something), I didn't bother to read the error msg exactly and my attempts to repair using the XP CD failed miserably so I ended up taking it to a local repair shop and they said it was a virus and I had it reformatted (they backed up my stuff so it was ok) and I just got it back today. Looks like everything is OK now. – cornjuliox Aug 6 '11 at 2:49
Glad you are all set now. – KCotreau Aug 6 '11 at 2:52

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