How can I fix a issue with a virus that turned all my desktop icons into lnk files and won’t let me boot into Windows?

Deepak August 23, 2011
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I am facing a virus problem in my Windows 7. The problem comes from when I open a downloaded file with VLC option. After choosing the file to open with option, all my icons (Torrent, Internet Explorer and all other installed icons) changed to VLC. When I clicked the VLC file, it shows .ink extension.

Now After 5 -6 hours I am able to boot Windows in normal mode. It goes to welcome window but, not able to proceed after that, and shut down automatically. Currently running my PC in Safe & networking mode.

Please help me on this. I am totally frustrated and don’t want to format my system. Please provide me a fix. Thanks in advance!

  1. nate
    June 20, 2012 at 4:26 pm

    hi aibeck..ples help trying for 2nd option..i cant unzip the file..then how to run it if i cant unzip that file..T_T help me please!!!

    • Susendeep Dutta
      June 21, 2012 at 11:55 am

      Download Peazip and install it in your PC -

      After installing it,right click on the file and click on extract here and then you'll be able to get to use the file.

    • ha14
      June 21, 2012 at 1:53 pm

      you can unzip on another pc using 7ZIP for instance, then transfer to usb key then plug it on your pc, copy past the reg file to the desktop and click on it.

    • Tina
      June 21, 2012 at 4:40 pm

      Do you not have Winzip installed on your computer? What happens when you try to unzip?

      If the problem is that the zip file is not recognized because you don't have the necessary software, download 7Zip for free.

  2. dhanju
    May 13, 2012 at 1:53 pm

    how to delete the virus from the computer if computer shows the all icons are same included only software & games

    • ha14
      May 14, 2012 at 8:38 am

      have you tried to scan pc with malwarebyted antimalware, superantispyware, clamwin, in safe mode.

      try the following from winhelponline
      see if this will fix association problems so that you can see which icon is virus

    • Oron
      May 14, 2012 at 8:44 am

      Here are two ways you can remove it.
      1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free (from Install and update definitions. Restart PC in safe mode (press F8 at startup to get the option) and use Malwarebytes to scan the disc and remove the virus.

      2. Download an "Antivirus Rescue Disk", such as Kasperskey Rescue Disk ( or AVG Rescue CD ( These come as ISO files. Burn it as a bootable CD (let us know if you need instructions for this) and boot the PC from the CD. Scan the PC and remove the viruses. This is the safest solution, but obviously requires more work and takes longer than the first one.
      Good luck!

  3. Tima
    May 10, 2012 at 4:42 pm

    Plzz i need a help -- all the icons in my pc opened in microsoft and i'm unable to do anything and when i tried to open internet explorer i failed:( what can i do -- can any one help me

    • ha14
      May 10, 2012 at 8:04 pm

      you can try windows restore point to revert to earlier state just before your problem on windows.

      try this
      you can try the following from winhelponline
      download on another pc, extract the reg file to USB key, plug the USB key on your desktop, move the reg file on the desktop and click on it.

      -- right click on start button
      -- select properties
      -- in start menu tab, click on customize
      -- find the default programs entry and make sure to mark box next to it
      -- click on ok, then apply and then ok

      -- click on start
      -- click on default programs
      -- click on set your default programs and wait for it to load
      -- click on windows media player
      -- click on choose defaults for this program at bottom of screen
      -- select the options you want this program to open by checking the box next to it. If you see any entries that are not media files, such as word, pdf, etc., that are not multimedia files, uncheck them.
      -- Once you have selected the defaults for it, click on save
      -- try the new settings

  4. wan
    April 6, 2012 at 1:54 am

    Click Start Menu, and then type regedit in the Start Search and press
    Navigate to the following registry branch:


    Click on the arrow to expand it and delete the sub-key named UserChoice.
    Exit from Registry Editor.


  5. Jeffery Fabish
    August 23, 2011 at 4:54 pm

    Hi Deepak,

    First backup your most important documents to a CD, external hard drive or backup service. Later on, be sure to scan these before you open them. Do not trust these files.

    As ha14 said, if you have System Restore enabled, please simply insert the Windows disk and boot from it. You will be presented with the screen as if you were going to reinstall and it will ask you if you want to repair (bottom left of one of the screens I think). There you will see system restore. I think it's also available at start -> All programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> System Restore.

    First let's check to see what is starting up with Windows that could initiate a restart. (In safe mode) Go to start -> search: msconfig.exe and press enter. A dialog box will pop up, go to the "startup" tab, remove any items that you know you don't need to start. If you have a question about what any of these items are, please post them. Press apply and then ok and proceed to the next step.

    Next, go download Malwarebytes and Spybot Search & Destroy. Install and update them. Once they been updated, perform a "full scans". I think they both run in safe mode. Please also go to start -> control panel -> add/remove programs and remove "VLC" and any plugins that you may have installed with it.

    If this fixes it, please tell me and we will go through the final stages of cleanup. Your system can still not be trusted.

    August 23, 2011 at 4:48 pm

    Hello, first thing to do is clean your system.  Can you access any other options for safe mode like safemode with command prompt or regular safe mode?  If your computer does not boot, it is probably a boot virus.  I would advice you to download superantispyware and run it from safe mode or safemode with networking.  Here is the link:

    Download the portable version the link points too.  You can either, download it to your desktop or to a usb flashdrive.  Once the program is downloaded just run the executable program.  This is the portable version so it will not install on your computer.  You also do not need to update it because it already uses  the most recent signatures.  Let the program run and get rid of everything that shows as results.  If after doing the cleaning with this program you can log in into windows you can run malwarebytes.  Here is the link:

    Once downloaded, install the program and update it.  It is recommended to use malwarebytes on a regular system, but you can also run it on safemode.  Do a full scan and get rid of everything it shows.  By now, your system should be almost clean. 

    If after running superantispyware your system still is not able to boot into windows you could use an antivirus cd.  In order for you do to that, you will need to download the antivirus cd iso, and then burn it to a cd/dvd.  You also have to make sure to boot up from the cd/dvd drive.  Here is page showing you some options with instructions:

    I would use either kasperski or bitdefender.  Only thing you need to do is insert the disk with your system on and then restart your system from cd/dvd.  Follow the instructions and let the full scan run through.  Make sure to get rid of anything it finds. 

    Also make sure to download and run a scan with tdsskiller.

    If everything works ok you should be able to startup your system.  Once the system is running ok, make sure to do full scans with all the tools mentioned above and once clean make sure to delete all your restore points and create a new one.  Now the only thing left to do is fix your icon problem.  Go to the next link and download the .exe fixer.  On this page there are other fixes for different files

    • deepak
      August 23, 2011 at 5:14 pm

      Hi Fidelis,

      I have downloaded the malware bytes and run the setup in  safe and networking mode but i suppose the virus dont allow it to run the scan ption & now the application hangs for the past 30 min. I am not geeting whats going on.Pls Suggest

      • FIDELIS
        August 23, 2011 at 5:44 pm

        Hello, try using superantispyware first.  It is the firs link.  If that does not work either, go to the following link and download rkill.  Rkill will terminate any activities produced by malware and it will let you do what you want until next reboot.  Download the software and run it.  Let it finish running....sometimes it takes some time.  Once it tells you it finished running then run malwarebytes/superantispyware.  Here is the link:

        Make sure to download the iExplore.exe option or the  The reason for this is that the iExplore.exe does not get stopped by the virus because it needs explorer.exe to run.  The same thing applies for the download with the .com extension.  Make sure to save it to your desktop and run it from there. 

        • FIDELIS
          August 23, 2011 at 5:46 pm

          do not click on the highlighted blue.  That is the name of the file, it will take you nowhere.  Go to link and download both of these just in case.  There are several options.

        • FIDELIS
          August 23, 2011 at 6:01 pm

          If rkill does not run, you will have to fix the .exe extension first.  Go to the last link and download/run the .exe fixer.  Once that is done, fun full scans of the programs.

        • Deepak
          August 23, 2011 at 6:49 pm

          Hi Fidels,

          I used a file name inkfix_vista posted 1 year back by aibek.I simly unzip that file and run on the system and than restart . Now all my icons come to normal condition and window is booting in normal state.The above mentioned file not worked but thanks for your continous support.

          Thanks a lot Fidelis.


        • FIDELIS
          August 24, 2011 at 3:41 am

          Hello, I am glad your problem is fixed. 

        • Aibek
          August 24, 2011 at 9:08 am

          glad to hear that )

  7. Anonymous
    August 23, 2011 at 4:23 pm

    When you boot in safe mode do you see an option in the black screen regarding restoring windows using restore point. If you have the WIndows 7 cd, then boot from it and choose repair.

    If you are in safe use windows restore point to go back to an earlier state where evrything was fine.

  8. deepak
    August 23, 2011 at 3:49 pm

    smbody pls reply for this issue.

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