Weird Windows 8.1 issue (advice needed)

Subject: Weird Windows 8.1 issue (advice needed)
From: Chris Morton <salt -dot- morton -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 2 Mar 2017 09:17:36 -0500

I usually run any given Windows session for a week, perhaps two, before
rebooting. It has not been a problem. I run every session as a user user,
only switching to my local admin account as absolutely necessary.

But then yesterday I has having all sorts of issues with a client's 42-pp.
Word file.

The client knows that the Word docs they're handing me to work on are very
wonky. But just to be satisfied that the problem I was encountering with a
multi-page table was inherent to the doc itself, I chose to reboot my
system (knowing that Chrome gobbles up memory).

Well, the reboot took a L-O-N-G time. No, I do not have Windows Updates
turned on, so rule that out. I also checked my Win updates log and there
was nothing of interest there.

Yet now my entire personal GUI is mostly different. Gone are a number of
items from my Desktop. File Explorer has taken on a different appearance.
Items I put on my Taskbar are missing.

This freaked me out, so I took 40 minutes and ran a complete Malwarebytes
scan. Nothing turned up. I also have WinPatrol anti-ransomware installed,
and it didn't complain about anything. When time permits, I intend to run a
few other scanners I have in my collection to look for rootkits, Trojans,

But I'm on assignment through tomorrow afternoon, so thought I'd post this
query here to collect your thoughts as to why my personal UI was messed

Chris Morton

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