I seem to have some sort of https time-out problem with browsers in Windows 7.
Windows 7 seemed to work just fine until a few weeks ago, when (among other things) I installed Windows EMET. Stupid me. That slowed everything in Windows down to a crawl (the computer became almost unusable), so I uninstalled it. Then I discovered the browser/https problem.
If I start up a browser and open an https site (e.g. http://www.google.com, which transforms itself into https://www.google.com) it opens OK (Google is my default home page). If I then browse to other https sites (either by clicking on a Google search result, or by clicking on a saved Favorite), the computer will connect OK until after about 90 - 120 seconds have elapsed from my starting up the browser -- then either the browser hangs up (if I'm using IE9), or I get a message saying that it's given up because the site didn't respond and so it's timed out (if I'm using Chrome or Comodo's Dragon, which is a Chrome derivative). From that point I can still access http sites without a problem, but not https sites -- until I exit from the browser and start up afresh, and then the timeout cycle starts all over again.
This is a real problem when shopping, for example; by the time I get to checkout, the timeout prevents me from getting to the end of the chain of checkout windows and so I can't complete the transaction. All three browsers exhibit the problem. I've tried shutting down the firewall; that makes no difference.
I thought at first that this was an ISP timeout or a WiFi timeout. It's definitely not; I'm not using WiFi, and other computers in the household (using Windows 7, Windows XP) don't exhibit this problem. Also, IE8 running in a virtual XP window on this same Windows 7 machine works just fine with https -- no timeout.
I don't think I have a virus; I've used several antivirus programs (incuding Comodo) and none could find anything.
My first thought was of course to do a System Restore. That's when I discovered that Defraggler64 v 2.15 had wiped out all my System Restore points (assuming that it wasn't another side effect of EMET -- it may have been, because for a while I couldn't retain any new System Restore Points; those kept mysteriously disappearing. Or it might have been 64-bit CCleaner v 3.15.16, although the developers deny that, and I don't see how that could wipe out new SRPs after I quit using it.) Ok, I fixed the System Restore problem, but the https timeout is still there.
Reinstalling IE9 or installing IE10 doesn't seem likely to fix the problem; to repeat: it arises with Chrome and Dragon too.
In the worst case, I could go back to a pretty old System Image, but that would be a lot of work (I'd have to reinstall all the subsequent Windows updates, for one thing). Which reminds me of another interesting problem that cropped up around the same time; now I can't (manually) get Windows Update to tell me whether I'm lacking any important updates; I never get a response from the Microsoft site. However, all the updates do seem to be getting installed, so I can live with that.
Can anyone please suggest where the timeout is in Windows 7 (64-bit), and how I can change it?