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Ok, so I'm running Vista 32bit and this is the second time this has happened to me, and both times Firefox was the culprit. I was using Firefox, and it froze (I had two windows open with around 7 tabs in each), so I tried to close the window. Its not working and now one of them says "Not Responding". I am able to minimize, and maximize both of them, but I can't close or use them.

So next I tried opening up the task manager by right clicking the empty start bar area. This doesn't do anything at all, the task manager doesn't pop up.

So, I tried Ctrl+Alt+Delete, and nothing would happen for about 20 seconds, then a black screen pops up for about another 20-30 seconds, and then this error box shows up

Logon process has failed to create the security options dialog.
Failure - Security Options

I am able to press "Ok" and go back to my desktop and everything works except for firefox. I can obviously solve this by restarting my computer, but I want to figure out why this is happening. Any ideas?


UPDATE:

I'm using Avast Home and Windows Defender. I've been using this set up for 2 years now without any problems. Also, this doesn't happen all the time, its happened twice in the span of a month! so weird..

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Couldn't find a solution so I just restarted, hopefully the problem doesn't come back, but usually when you don't change anything it does :( –  GiH Nov 4 '09 at 19:31

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

What anti-virus software are you using? also any anti-spyware?

UPDATE:

This link might not be a direct solution but could give you some insights on your problem. Does your firefox hangup when you are doing something in particular like downloading a file or opening a pdf or something like that.

Once you see a pattern in the crashes that could help to solve the error speedily.

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No pattern, it happened twice and both times I think I was just simply surfing the web... I might have done something without realizing though, ill be sure to check out that link –  GiH Nov 4 '09 at 0:35

Two of the best troubleshooting tools that I have used are Process Explorer and Process Monitor from Sysinternals.

Process Explorer is like Task Manager on a lot of steroids. It will let you view more info about processes than you'll know what to do with, unless you're a hardcore Windows kernel junkie.

Process Monitor evolved out of File Monitor and Registry Monitor. It combines real-time process & thread, file system, registry, and network monitoring for processes. It also logs this data, and can be filtered by various parameters to single out the desired activity to monitor.

When I find something funky going on, I'll usually start up both apps, and see what things look like. I watch apps start & exit in PE, then look for the relevant process info in PM to follow in detail what was happening during those events.

For your case with Firefox, I would suggest rebooting, start up PE & PM, then start FF. You'll see FF start up in PE, then can filter the capture in PM by PID to see what it's doing.

Lastly, if you want more info on using these tools, check out the Sysinternals website for articles & blog posts written by Mark Russinovich.

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