Trouble with Defender updates and other sites

  Granger 12:16 10 Aug 2007

Would you guys help me troubleshoot this? For a week or 2 now my Acer Travelmate 803LCi (XP SP2)can't connect to many web sites. This includes so I can't get updates to XP or Defender. This is bad timing - I turned off system restore because I had disk capacity problems.

What happens is that it says it's waiting for the site, and nothing ever appears.

Some sites that don't connect:,,,,

Some sites that connect ok:,,,,

Luckily I can still connect to Norton Liveupdate, my email server and my work, so it's not desperate yet.

I've tried resetting internet options, I've tried enabling/disabling add-ons in IE7. I've tried using Netscape instead. I've turned off Phishing Filter, Pop-Up Blocker and even Norton Antivirus. I ran SFC, which seemed not to find anything. I entered the sites as trusted in IE7. None of these made any difference at all.

A different laptop through the same router and the same broadband connection has no trouble with the same sites.

I can't figure out what's changed. I have a hunch it's something to do with the content or format of the sites I'm trying to visit. If so, maybe there's something wrong with a bit of software on the laptop, or my configuration that prevents my laptop handling those sites properly. But how do I troubleshoot this?

  Granger 15:45 10 Aug 2007


  birdface 16:11 10 Aug 2007

You could try running this,click here it has worked for quite a few, Worth a try.

  VoG II 16:15 10 Aug 2007

It could be a hosts file problem.

Enable viewing of hidden files and folders:

1. Click Start.
2. Click My Computer.
3. Select the Tools menu and click Folder Options.
4. Select the View Tab.
5. Under the Hidden files and folders heading select Show hidden files and folders.
6. Click Yes to confirm.
7. Uncheck the Hide file extensions for known file types.
8. Click OK.

Now navigate to


and look for the file 'hosts' (with no file extension. Right click it and rename it to hosts.txt then restart your PC.

  Granger 16:47 10 Aug 2007

Thanks guys for the replies. The hosts thing didn't work I'm afraid. I'm a bit nervous about the WURT solution - my problem isn't with running updates, but with connecting to the updates server?

  brundle 17:10 10 Aug 2007

If you can't access the updates server, you can't get updates to run anyway - try Buteman's link, or DialAFix, which does the same kind of thing; click here

Neither will damage anything, they are designed to repair faults...

  birdface 10:28 12 Aug 2007

Have a look, from another thread, click here

  Granger 09:23 14 Aug 2007

Thanks very much guys. I've run the tool but it didn't fix this problem. Right at the end it asked if I wanted to reinstall IE. I said yes, but it couldn't find the right files in my i386 folder.

But my problem is not specifically with Windows Updates - that was just one example of a web site I can't connect to.

Thanks very much for the help so far - any other ideas?

  brundle 09:26 14 Aug 2007

Using Norton firewall? Can you access the sites if you use Safe Mode With Networking?

  birdface 09:53 14 Aug 2007

Defender and Norton Do not mix very well.I would think about getting rid of one of them.Any one of the two could be causing the problem.What I would do from previous experiance would be ,Delete Norton, Run the Norton Removal Tool, Then run C Cleaner.Then reinstall Norton.Some folk have been having problems with Defender for the last couple of weeks,See if the Microsoft Up-Dates later on to-day help.

  Granger 09:04 17 Aug 2007

Thanks again for the help. It seems to be getting worse - the reason I'm not updating this thread much is I can't access PC Advisor from that computer.

I tried safe mode with networking and still couldn't access most web sites I tried. I've uninstalled Defender, which also made no difference. I'm not keen to uninstall Norton (Antiviros, not Firewall) because it was a download version...also it was the only thing that could get rid of some malware I had a while back. But I disabled it and that made no difference.

Maybe I have some malware again, so I might try a few free tools again, but none of them helped before (and neither did Avast) - they all showed a problem but couldn't fix it - only Norton cleaned my system.

Any other ideas guys?

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