What are some free programs that are necessary for your computer to run? =/

My computer is pure shit. It has a maximum capacity of 4GB, or 3.99GB, if you want to be precise. I have no clue how much GH or whatever the fuck else it is, as I did not purchase it, and clueless to computer construction. I run Win98.

4 days ago, my internet stopped working, completely. In the morning, it was working fine, then 3 hours later, it won’t connect. I have cable, by the way. It’d open up Explorer/Firefox, but it’d just stop there. It wouldn’t load up pages, and if you waited long enough, it’d say the website cannot be found. This is Google.ca.

Then, I noticed the massive cluster of virii on my computer. Some of them are severe, so says No-adware. I cannot actually get rid of them. I try to quarintine, and it doesn’t change anything.

Then I noticed the errors. Many, many errors. When I start Windows, it says Kernell.dll, or something, cannot be found, and might be infected. And some other errors that freeze my computer when it starts, so I have to Ctrl Alt Del them away.

My question is: is there a downloadable package somewhere, with all of the information needed for a computer to run? I’m not asking for updates or anything, but many things don’t work. Internet is on/off, MSN won’t start up, constant freezings, if I leave my computer on for 5 hours without it being on standby or anything, it says there is not enough information to keep it running, and I resort to shutting it down to “reset the counter”. When I first turn on my computer, I can play Mp3’s easily, but, if I leave it on for an hour (my computer), the Mp3’s still work, but freezes mid-song, and continues seconds later, and lags when I try to open one.

In the past, whenever a problem like this’d occur, I’d re-install Windows, but this time it’s not helping. Any suggestions are welcome.

Trash it.

Do you mean, throw it out, or wipe it of information? I’d do the latter, but I don’t know how. The only way I can think of doing so, is getting a big magnet and killing it, but I want to at least set it back up afterwards.

Throw it down a flight of stairs and build a Porshe Carrera out of the remaining parts.

either that, or reformat it with the windows cd or whatever. Reformating usually works.

I’d try seeing if you can’t fix everything with Hijack This! (and this online log analyzer: http://www.hijackthis.de/en), since my computer was in a similar situation (plus it’d take like 2 or 3 hours to BOOT UP), and Hijack This was able to help me get rid of everything infecting it.

If that doesn’t work, then backup your important stuff and reformat your hard-drive.

The thing is, I don’t know shit when it comes to computers. I do know a lot of information, but nothing about constructing one, or actually formating or anything.

Well this website sums it up nicely http://tech.jmwebdesigns.com/software/expert/reformat.html

Reinstall Windows. You don’t have to format, just reinstall Windows ontop of Windows: It usually fixes any errors involving missing files. It’s not an ideal way to fix things, though.

How old is this computer? If you’ve only got 4 GB of HD space total, you’ve got to be approaching 10 years. What are the other stats?

Also, if it’s running Windows XP (which I highly doubt, considering), boot into Safe Mode with Networking (press F8 before the Windows screen appears during boot to get to this option screen) and go to http://housecall.trendmicro.com/ and run the full security scan (use the new housecall beta, since it looks for both viruses and spyware). That’ll at least make sure your computer’s clean.

If you’re running Windows 98 or Me, I agree with Hiryuu. You can get Hijack This from http://www.merijn.org/. I’d also download CWShredder and KazaaBeGone. Run the latter two first, then Hijack This. Be careful with Hijack This, though. If you remove something important there, it could cause more damage than it helps.

(I’d never seen that auto-analysis Hijack This site that Hiryuu posted before. I ran my Hijack This log through it (which, mind you, as my job is to clean viruses and spyware from people’s computers, my computer is <B><I>fucking clean</I></B>), and it only incorrectly spotted a couple of things as bad; it didn’t like that my homepage was an html file stored locally (which I’d created), and it didn’t like some of the ActiveX controls that I’d downloaded, namely one from stamps.com and one from theymightbedownloads.com. Other than that, it was pretty damn accurate).

[edit] Re-reading this automatically generated analysis, it did give me a couple of “possible” problems on some of my software, simply because I change the names of the directories that programs install to. Also, it said that I didn’t have any anti-virus software running, even though I’m running PC-cillin IS 2005.

Format your harddrive and reinstall windows. Or just buy a computer that isn’t horribly old.

Sat, I also remove viruses and spyware from peoples computers for a job. I recommend trying Microsoft Anti-Spyware and AVG Anti-Virus if Housecall doesn’t work.

Sounds like a job for reformatting. Find your OS cd, or even a new one if you want to switch OS (though at that age, newer OSes would likely not run well on it). The next bit is a fair deal more alien to a computer newbie, but is easy to learn somewhat, so long as you follow instructions. Make sure the OS cd comes with a boot floppy as well, if you can’t find it, http://www.bootdisk.org/ should have it (d/l the one that corresponds with your OS for safety reasons).

Now, after you’ve backed up the stuff on your comp, its time to say goodbye to the current installation. Turn off computer. Turn it on, but this time, look for the bit that says ‘press delete/f12/enter to enter setup’ and do so. This should appear before the windows logo appears. You will be taken to a new menu. Do not alter anything here, unless you are told to do so. Now, I am going to tell you to find the option for ‘boot order’ or whatever your machine is running. It’ll list various drives on your comp, sometimes drives not there. In its current state, it should say the floppy drive is first, and hard drive is second. Or vice versa. Either way, make floppy first, and your CD drive second (it may be a DVD drive, but that works just fine). ANything past that is unnecessary.

Turn comp back off. Now insert that floppy bootdisk I told you about earlier, and while we’re at it, the OS CD as well. You’ll need to navigate some menus and type in some old-fashioned prompt commands, these evade me but someone else here should fill in this missing step no problem. Now your disk should be reformatted! Turn your comp off, and take out the floppy so it doesnt screw your boot order up, and make sure the OS CD is in there. Now you should be installing just fine, after some more menu navigation.

Mr. Saturn, it cannot be 10 years old, the OS is Windows 98. I did get it in '99.

Is there a page on Microsoft.com that checks for missing files, and puts them on?

Get another computer. You can get a decent Dell Desktop for $600 or something.

Or as low as 300, if you go no-frills and no-monitor. You’ve got a monitor already right?

If you’re getting shit like kernel.dll, it is definitly format time. And can windows run effectively on something that ancient? You might want to look into legacy (read: for old PCs) operating systems.

And to answer your last question…no setz, microsoft does not offer a service like that. And you really can’t just copy and paste missing system files from a clean copy of windows to yours. (like…you can’t copy a system file from the install cd straight to your running OS. Its like a transplant, sort of, and the system will probably ‘reject’ it). Like i said, format time.