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Windows 7: TaskEng.exe Window Appears on Startup - Restore? Repair? Malware?

08 Apr 2015   #11

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit SP 1

Wolfgang, thanks. I guess I could disable all, and then only add an item back when it becomes a nuisance not to have it.

I have done a bit more experimenting - I had an admin account and a standard account, and I added a second standard account for a family member. When I tried restarting, and logging into each account, the only one where the TaskEng.exe window appears is my Admin account.

Then I created a second Admin account (didn't add any startup items yet), and I discovered that when I log into this account the TaskEng.exe window does not appear. I can use this account to experiment with adding startup items, such as my calendar or whatever, and see if any of them will recreate the problem.

Hmmmm ... the mystery continues

My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Apr 2015   #12
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

You should definitely have the startups that you set yourself like the Calendar or a dock. But all those 'automatic' startups that crept in by themselves are really not required. I suspect that the funny message comes from one of those.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
08 Apr 2015   #13

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit SP 1


Worst case, I guess I could start using my new Admin acct and just delete the one with the issue after I retrieve any data files I want to keep.

What fun ...

The good news of course for this whole thing is I got to practice my Macrium skills again - thanks, Teach! - and I learned some more new tools
My System SpecsSystem Spec

09 Apr 2015   #14

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit SP 1

I've been observing my D630's behavior, and I have a revised theory. When I was getting ready to rearrange and resize my partitions, I moved some User folders and files to my external hard drive instead of copying them over.

I think I may have accidentally moved a file or folder that one of my applications or start up items needs in order to run. I still have to figure out which one is having the problem, but in the meantime I'm trying to move those files back into their original position on my internal drive to see if that helps. Next I'll tackle the start up items and any apps I've installed recently.

PS the behavior I observed is that when my external drive is attached, that's when my start up process seems to hang - the underscore keeps blinking against a blank screen, and I see the data transmission light on my external drive flashing as though active interaction is taking place (not just a heartbeat type regular flash). In addition, when I go to safely remove the drive, it says I can't because a program is using it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
15 Apr 2015   #15

Windows 7 Professional 64 bit SP 1

For all files that I moved, I've moved them back to my C partition but that didn't solve the problem.

I've taken my "Startup Items" (as listed in that tab of my System Configuration window) down to almost nothing and that didn't solve the problem either. I've also uninstalled a couple of programs I recently installed and that made no difference.

I even tried taking a video of the process to see if I could capture the text that so briefly appears before the tasking.exe window closes, but I don't have good enough resolution in my little camera to capture it clearly - and it only lasts for about a frame or at most two frames. When I tried to read it as it went by, I think I saw "not found" and I might have seen "dll" but that is a guess at best.

The good news is it only shows up for the one Admin account - the new Admin account I built and the two standard accounts I built do not appear to be experiencing the same issue.

When I was looking at applications to uninstall, I also found some old stuff that I no longer need, so I was able to do some housekeeping - so I guess that's good news also.

It's possible that the problem is associated with a Service rather than a Startup item, but I don't know enough to know which ones I can safely disable. I did confirm that this doesn't happen when I start up in Safe mode; I may also try starting up in diagnostic mode to see what happens.

At this point, I plan to use my new Admin account long enough to make sure I can do everything I need, and then I'll delete the Admin account that has the problem. If the problem doesn't show up on another account at that point, I will mark this thread as solved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 TaskEng.exe Window Appears on Startup - Restore? Repair? Malware?

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