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Customer Discussions > Computer forum

My computer won't play online videos or pictures

Discussion moved to this forum by Amazon on Aug 24, 2008 1:58:51 PM PDT.

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Showing 1-25 of 37 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Aug 22, 2008 1:56:58 PM PDT
Neelloc says:
Does anyone have an educated guess as to why my computer won't play online videos or show pictures or tabs online? I've removed all of my anti-spyware just to be sure and I have my security settings on the low side. Yet when I go to websites, the status bar shows my computer downloading pictures, etc. for a long time and no photos or video will show. When I'm not online I can view photos and videos that I already have. Please help! Thanks!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 2:28:13 PM PDT
Nunya says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 2:50:33 PM PDT
Crichton says:
I don't know if this is it, but your browser may be set to stop "pop-ups". See if a pale yellow bar [or whatever it is on your computer] shows up saying something like, "Your computer is trying to download a pop-up, click here if you want to proceed". I only mention it because when it happened to me, the bar wasn't very noticeable and it took a few frustrating times for me to notice it.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 3:07:35 PM PDT
*Ziggy-Zam* says:

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 3:51:04 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Oct 21, 2011 12:43:10 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 4:10:39 PM PDT
A Kaz says:
Your computer probably has some bogus shareware video/picture program that is crippling your system, or you have malware. I would tend towards it being malware, and I'd say unless you are an IT, or close to it (wouldn't be my first guess), you probably need to take this to someone. I'd first recommend a friend/friend of a friend/family member who knows what they're doing. Malware these days has become very difficult to diagnose/repair, and some of the most advanced computer techniques are often needed to remove them. Find yourself a nice friendly IT that wont charge you $100+ an hour :D

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 5:17:34 PM PDT
Guessing is right. We don't know what OS. We don't know what broswer. And you didn't tell us some other things necessary to even head down the right path.

I'm going to *guess* Windows XP or Windows Vista. I'm going to *guess* Internet Explorer 6 or 7. And I'm going to *guess* a few other variables, and come up with what could be a wild shot in the dark, or right on the money. But probably it's just a wild shot in the dark.

Start > Control Panel > Internet Options > Advanced > Multimedia. Make sure there's a check in the box next to Show Pictures.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 6:47:20 PM PDT
Neelloc says:
Thank You all for the suggestions. Warren, you're a good guesser. It is Windows XP with I.E. and you gave great directions to check. However, that 'show pictures' box was checked. Aside from shopping on Amazon, I don't access porn and I don't have a pop up blocker enabled. I bought SpySweeper to remove all of the malware, but it sounds like I just need to pay a professional lots of $$ after all. Too bad I already spent my whopping incentive check from George! Any guesses Warren on the winning lottery numbers? :)

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 8:40:21 PM PDT
Hi Neelloc,

Do you have a router in between your computer and however you connect to the internet? The reason I ask is that you have another option - you can just reformat and reinstall Windows. You will lose any data you don't have backed up, but if you have a CD or DVD recorder, you can save your data off before you do it.

The router will help to protect your computer while you do the reformat and reinstall. There was a recent IT security article that found that Windows boxes were generally compromised and infected before they could download and install updates. With a "stateful packet inspection" (SPI) router between your computer and your DSL or cable modem (if you connect that way) you have a fair amount of protection against that kind of compromise.

Also, running a Windows box without anti-virus and anti-malwear enabled is risky. It's not as risky as it used to be only because the virus and malwear writers have figured out a nasty technique called polymorphic viruses. They wrap the virus/malwear in a wrapper that encrypts the virus/malwear package. At the Defcon convention a couple of weeks ago in Las Vegas, there was a contest to see who could sneak a virus past the top ten anti-virus software packages. It was done in just a bit over two hours.

But anyone who connects a Windows, Mac, or even Linux box directly to a DSL or cable modem is going to probably be compromised. The SPI firewall in the router will not allow data into your computer if your computer didn't ask for it. It will stop a lot of general probing for weaknesses that other compromised computers do as a matter of course. The Linksys WRT54GL is a good router and gets really good if you violate the warranty but load Tomato firmware from Polarcloud. (Google it and you will find the link - it's open source Linux that runs on the router) That's more advanced, and only recommended once you get more up to speed with computer security. But Amazon just lowered the price of the WRT54GL. It's a great deal anyway but getting this model allows upgrading the firmware later if you want to.

But an SPI router won't protect you if your computer is already compromised and sending stuff out on the internet already. Any return traffic will be the result of a request and allowed through. You can also infect your computer, in spite of an SPI router, if you don't keep your system patched with Microsoft updates and you happen to visit a malware-infected website or open some cute but malicious e-mail attachment. Also, stay away from "free" software that many companies advertise on the web for Windows - a lot of it is spyware, some of it is malware, and all of it clogs up your system and makes it easier to break leading you to issues like you have now. I'm talking about the smiley-face packages, cute cursors, free ring tones or mp3s, and stuff that is not from well known companies like Adobe (Flash, Acrobat, etc) or others.

Good luck to you. My personal choice is to run Linux, behind an SPI router, and I had to learn a bit about computer security to be what I believe is safe. The reality is that there are a lot of really clever people out there that use their talents to break into other people's computers to harvest credit card numbers, passwords, financial information, etc, and then sell it all over the world to others that actually commit the various frauds using that information.

Anyone that uses a computer and the web to do anything financial, or stores financial information on a computer that is connected to the web, really needs to do some homework on computer security. Even doing everything right isn't always enough - sometimes the bad guys reverse engineer and discover weaknesses they can exploit and use them before anyone realizes they even exist.

It's not hype or fear mongering. This is very real. And the risks are especially high for people that aren't locked down as tight as possible.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 9:16:53 PM PDT
Old Salt says:
Save yourself some bucks...Go to this web site and ask your question Be sure to give info on your operating system and the browser you're using (if it isn't Firefox it should be.) IE is a disaster looking for some place to happen.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 22, 2008 9:28:30 PM PDT
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In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 4:49:34 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 23, 2008 5:05:25 AM PDT
Intrepid says:
Do you have Adobe Flash (formerly known as Macromedia Flash) installed? If you are not sure, go to
-which will analyze and if not present, ask if you want to install.
- that is essential if you want Flash based online videos on many sites.
- Be sure to check settings afterwards and set it to NOT turn on any camera (gimmick I don't want in ads)

Also in Start > Control Panel > Internet Options > Advanced > Multimedia
You need PLAY ANIMATIONS and PLAY VIDEOS in webpages checked ON

The above presumes you have your MSIE set up correctly. Default maximizes ease of incorporating software vendor's applications but not safety from malicious code writers.

For fair security and functionality, you should check that you have set in MSIE Tools>Internet Options>Security> Run Active X and Plug in's ENABLED
Script Active X Controls Marked Safe for Scripting ENABLED

DISABLE those "not marked safe" or "unsigned" for slightly tighter security.

Also highly recommend you DISABLE "Allow Paste operations via script" (very dangerous) and Scripting of Java applications (to avoid some imbedded malicious code in the images you view) unless you know the site or must use it. If you did not use these settings, you need to thoroughly scan your PC for virii, trojans, and malware because you may already have been infested. Sometimes it is just badly coded cookies that gum things up (hate cookies and only allow temporary ones). Purge cookies daily if you are compulsive like me for faster websurfing.

With these more secure settings that *Microsoft now recommends*, I get fine functionality and have not had a virus cripple my PC in over 8 years. It's not hard to set up. Just remember default settings in Windows preVista made it too accomodating to both decent and indecent software!

Hope all this helps.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 5:02:36 AM PDT
Intrepid says:
If I recall, SpySweeper in its most aggressive settings may interfere with Flash player. If you uninstalled SpySweeper, the Registry may still be set to disable Flash videos. Same is true of Spywareblaster (freeware that lets you enable or disable Flash). Some Flash based recurrent ad's on Yahoo sometimes get very annoying and slow down page loading (then I disable Flash altogether for ~a day).

SpySweeper also is an absolute CPU cycle pig. When I used it in the past, I gave up and ran it only weekly or set it on minimal settings. Too much resource overhead for my tastes unless you have a dual processor and lots of ram. Ad-aware and Spybot are well written alternatives.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 6:39:24 AM PDT
Not to foster outright paranoia, but how do you *know* that you have not had a virus cripple your computer for over 8 years? Or maybe that's not the right question. Maybe you haven't had a virus do damage to your system, but you could still easily be infected by something that logs keystrokes, searches for information on your system, and exfiltrates data.

Viruses used to be malicious and would try to screw things up - wipe out the master boot record, delete files, try to slam the hard drive heads until the drive failed, program wrong scan parameters for your monitor to overheat it, etc.

That has all changed. Some of the damaging ones are still out there but the vast majority are now operated by criminals who want to grab financial and identity information for resale, or who want to use your computer for spam e-mail or distributed denial of service attacks against companies they extort money from to allow them to stay online, etc. For these new virus/malware uses, they don't want you to be aware of the infection and may even harden your computer for you so that other viruses can't invade and try to also use your system and risk discovery.

There aren't many ways to fight these latter infections or to even know you have one other than monitoring your outgoing traffic or having some new version of antivirus software finally be able to detect an infection.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 6:45:37 AM PDT
Nanciejeanne says:
I use firefox, old salt, but it sometimes glitches and stops working (about 10% of the times I am using it.) I never had that with IE explorer. I am not going to automatically blame Vista. I just consider it an inconvenience and restart the program. Just wondered if you had an explanation.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 6:59:26 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Aug 23, 2008 7:03:46 AM PDT
Intrepid says:
Switching virus scanners intermittently and using decent ones at that. Change ups of malware scanners. Online scanners off of computer. Process monitoring. Having uploads scanned offsite to make sure I am not sending something nasty. Not having any port visible per Not having personal info visible per parsing. Having software firewall and soon hardware one. Not downloading from dubious sites. Changing IP address. It's actually not too much time spent - fire up or schedule and go off to bed.

I think you will agree this is more than some people do and I am not an IT person. I am an MD. Nothing is 100% safe. But even my IT person at work does not have his computer locked down as much.

Could I be hacked by someone determined. Of course. They can be polymorphic, self-regenerating, and self-updating by download. I may go to Linux at some point but that too is not 100% safe. Not even Mac's especially now - a co-worker's Mac Book Pro apparently was thrashed. Oh well - unless we decide that White Hats also have a bad attitude (closet anarchists) and imprison even script kiddies with automatic sentencing, there will be a problem.

But the point is the info I detailed for the original poster is valid and approved as prudent by Microsoft even if not 100% safe.

BTW - let me tap your expertise: how safe would you rate an XPe in Flash (enbedded XP in flash mem) machine? they tend not to have antivirus or firewall protection.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 23, 2008 4:49:10 PM PDT
Neelloc says:
Many thanks to everyone for their suggestions! The "prize" goes to Old Salt though!!! I downloaded Firefox and changed that to my browser. Voila! I now can see online photos and view videos! You saved me lots of IT expenses! Thankyou sooooo much! :)
Intrepid01: I reset my settings as you clearly described how to do so. Thanks!
Electronicsguy: Sorry, but I am a dental hygienist and while you gave some great and explicit suggestions, they went way over my noncomputer savy head! Thanks though to you!

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 24, 2008 10:05:30 AM PDT
Joel Kolstad says:
Electronics Guy --

That's all good advice, although I'd mention that in Windows XP SP2/SP3 (SP2 started shipping in fall of 2004) and Vista, and I believe the Mac's OS X, a firewall is included and enabled when you install the OS itself. As such, if the first thing a user does after installing such an OS is to have the machine download all the latest security updtes, it's *extremely* unlikely that the machine will be infected before this process is complete. (It's the same amount of protection that a router gets you...)

See: ...for details.

In reply to an earlier post on Aug 24, 2008 11:13:21 AM PDT
PC Guy says: Has a free online virus scanner that is quite good. It is good because, being online it is highly unlikely that is could be affected by a virus on your machine, It is useful to run this periodically as a doublecheck on your antivirus program, I use it alot. It take some time but once you start it you can just leave it alone until it finishes. ~ hour depending on your system.
Also what kind of files you are not able to run? Are they youtube type imbedded videos? Are they normal still pictures like jpg or gif. or are they Powerpoint (pps) files. switching to Firefox is not fixing the problem, it is avoiding the problem. There will be time when you want to use IE (I use both). Just a WAG, I would say you are either virused or are lacking a plug-in or you have a file association mis-assigned.

Posted on Feb 14, 2009 10:24:30 AM PST
Why dosent Adobe Flash player 10 work on my Windows XP Service pack 3? I downloaded it a couple of different times and it just won't play a video. It keeps stopping and starting again.
Thank's to any one that can help me.
You can send me an E-Mail if you want.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 14, 2009 5:12:12 PM PST
Intrepid says:
Assume the following is not an issue:
1. Make sure you do not have a (useful) utility that turned off Adobe Flash e.g. Spywareblaster set to "off"
2. Check that your browser is set temporarily to accept "Enable Install On Demand (Other)" i.e. allows third parties to install applications (turn OFF afterwards)

Then try uninstalling Flash if you can.
SCAN DISK (Explore>right click C: drive>menu option to scan
then reboot and go do something else until it's done
DEFRAGMENT your drive (Program>Accesssories>Defragment)
Go back to adobe's site and now REINSTALL Adobe Flash 10.x
note: I'd also make sure you turn off the camera setting in Adobe flash

Hope this helps. Best wishes.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2009 1:42:21 PM PST
I tried that and it still didn't work. This time when I was playing the movie from HULU and I right clicked on it and download to real player appeared in the drop down menu. I downloaded it to real player and it played fine. Can I make my real player my default player. That way I don't need Flaash 10?
Ken F

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2009 1:43:24 PM PST
That's not the problem thanks any way

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2009 1:44:11 PM PST
I don't have any porn on my computer.

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 16, 2009 1:46:16 PM PST
And do what? I have automatic updates. I get all the (critical updates) automaticially. When I shut down my computer some times they down load before it turns of
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Discussion in:  Computer forum
Participants:  23
Total posts:  37
Initial post:  Aug 22, 2008
Latest post:  Feb 9, 2016

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