So I had a customer drop a Dell laptop off at my shop today with what I thought was a simple issue. Turns out, it's not, haha.
When you first turn the computer on, it gives a error message saying, "Windows Security..These files can't be opened..Your Internet security settings prevented one or more files from being opened."
It does this for ANY .exe file. Like IE, Adobe Reader, Quicktime, everything. Even major system processes. regedit cannot be opened, system restore cannot be opened, UAC can't even be turned off because the .exe won't open.
I tried restoring the .exe default registry via a restore file found in another tutorial. Obviously it didn't work.
I even tried making a second user with admin access and doing it that way, same issue.
I removed all of their Anti-virus apps, Firewalls are turned off, etc.
All of the Internet security settings are on low or off.
I removed the hard drive and did a deep scan with AVG one our PC's at the shop.
Now, here is the weird part. Like I said before, the .exe's cannot be opened, it gives the error message everytime, in safemode, and on every user, (although they only have one user, it does it on the temp user I made.). BUT, when you open a file, say it's a .pdf, it will open Adobe Reader right up. They also have a link to "Facebook" on their desktop, not quite sure why, but if I open that up, IE opens up no problem and works just fine. It does this with every program.
I have been on google and trying everything I possibly could for the past 3 hours and I'm completely stumped. The very very very last option would be for me to reinstall Windows, I'm just hoping it doesn't come down to that.
Thanks in advance.