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For some strange reason, the start menu, taskbar and desktop icons are not running on my computer. I can still run task manager, and the locking screen and screensaver still work. According to the task manager, Windows explorer is running, as well as all other necessary services/processes, but I cannot open an actual explorer Windows by using the "run" function in the task manager (though, I can start almost all other applications through this function).

I have rebooted and logged off / logged on multiple times, but to no affect. I am also running an AVG full computer scan at the moment, but so far all it has found are a few Trojan horse injects, agents and crypts (not really a big deal) and a "virus found ILCrypt". Also, according to AVG the drivers for my firewall are missing, and my firewall is down. All other components and virus scan are still working fine though.

I have not downloaded anything malicious / dangerous any time recently.

If it helps, I am using a workstation PC (2x Intel Xeon 12 core 4.00 GHz) running Windows XP pro.

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Your infected, see my answer here...superuser.com/questions/100360/… –  Moab Oct 27 '12 at 2:01
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This might not be an infection; it happens when WINLOGON gets hung up, then Explorer is not run and the desktop is not created. I experience this with XP sometimes as well and what was described is one of the symptoms. Other common symptoms include xp stuck loading preferences, xp wlnotify.dll, and xp startup sound not played. If I ever manage to figure out what’s causing it or how to fix it, I’ll let you know. –  Synetech Oct 27 '12 at 3:29
    
im going to trust Synetech on this one, because i did do a complete wipe of all viruses, but to no affect when i rebooted after. considering that i then rebooted much later and everything was fine again, it seems more likely that the WINLOGON did get hung up, as said above. –  Ben Franchuk Oct 27 '12 at 4:10

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