System32 Folder Opens at Startup?

Dennis Faas's picture

Gazette Reader 'Frances' writes:

" Dear Dennis,

When I start my computer, the System32 folder opens. I don't know how it started, but how do I make the System 32 folder stop appearing? I went to Start -> Run, typed in 'MSCONFIG', then went and looked at my Startup, but I don't know what to uncheck. My Norton software is up to date and I am using Windows XP and Verizon DSL. Please help. Thank you. "

My response:

This is a frequently asked question.

In fact, I managed to find a Microsoft Knowledge Base article (KB#170086) which describes why the System32 folder may appear after you login to Windows.

In a nutshell, the System 32 folder appears at startup because of a corrupt system registry value. The value could have (most likely) corrupted for a number of reasons, including: a Spyware or virus attack (or remnants of), or you installed (or uninstalled) a program from the Internet which did not install / uninstall itself properly.

According to Microsoft Knowledge Base article #170086, the fix to remove the System32 Folder from appearing at Startup is to edit the registry.

Warning: editing the registry is not for the light-hearted. As always, you should backup the registry before modifying it; changes are instantaneous and there is no "undo". Having said that: making an erroneous change to your registry can cause serious harm to your system. Microsoft warns that "if you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system." (Source: Microsoft KB article #170086).

For full detail on the fix, please refer to Microsoft Knowledge Base article #170086.

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