Selective 'cannot find server' message in browser

  Repairer 08:14 14 Jul 2010
Locked

I am using Windows XP Home with SP3 and IE6.
I can access most of my usual websites but get 'cannot find server' message for some inportant ones including Microsoft and my CA virus protection site.
I have run the Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool and found nothing. I have disabled all firewalls without result.
I have now moved to Mozilla Firefox and get the same result.
I have tried an alternative modem with no change.
Where can my problem lie?
Could it be modem setup parameters?
I would be grateful for any suggestions.
Thanks.
Repairer

  mgmcc 08:40 14 Jul 2010

Some "internet nasties" modify the Hosts file so as to block access to sites which might remove the infection, e.g. AntiVirus and antimalware sites.

The Hosts file is a plain text file, but with no extension, which can be opened in Notepad. It is located in:

C:\Windows\System32\Drivers\etc\Hosts

Open the file and check that there isn't an entry something like:

127.0.0.1 www microsoft com

and with similar entries starting 127.0.0.1 for the domains of your AntiVirus sites. If there are, delete the lines, save the file and exit. (Dots were removed from the domain to prevent the forum software messing it up with a "click here".)

  Repairer 09:14 14 Jul 2010

Thanks for the response.
There was one entry which was 127,0,0,1 local hosts which I deleted to no effect.
Repairer

  woodchip 09:24 14 Jul 2010

Type in Search "Host" Without Quotes then double click the file to open it or Open it in Notepad or Wordpad as you can edit the file there. look for the address that is being stopped and put in front of the line Rem save the file and exit

  woodchip 09:24 14 Jul 2010

sorry too slow

  woodchip 09:26 14 Jul 2010

You can also check if Firewall is blocking them, as can the Browser

  Repairer 17:30 14 Jul 2010

Thanks for the responses.
I have concluded that the problem is located somewhere in Windows and I am going for a clean reinstall (for the umpteenth time!).
Thanks again.
Repairer

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