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Here’s a major issue that affects people and can cause you to be totally unable to get onto the internet. I’ve seen it many times in the past and often it can be caused initially by a virus or malware of some type.

If you have a virus, you will want to check for this extra setting after the virus is removed because it can be a way for the creators of the virus to spy on you and determine every site you’ve been to and collect your usernames passwords for each of these sites. A symptom of this type of problem is sometimes that your internet just isn’t working at all or it’s working very slowly. You really don’t want to be giving the bad guys that kind of control over your life. They can use this to get into your bank and send themselves money or steal your identity in other ways such as committing crimes and then you end up getting carted off to jail for those crimes until the police finally figure out what’s going on. Don’t let any of these happen to you.

What is this extra setting that can wreak havoc with your entire computing life? It is something called a proxy setting within Windows. This causes your computer to look for another computer that will be used to connect you to the internet instead of connecting automatically. This is a common setting that might be used on a business network. In a business environment, you should really ask IT whether you are supposed to have proxy set or not. If you are at home, generally you don’t want proxy to be set at all.

You may be thinking, “OK, that’s great to know DJ, but how does that help if I don’t know where this proxy setting is located?” Not to worry. I’ve included some instructions below that are designed to make this as painless as possible.

Even if you normally use Chrome, Firefox, Opera or some other browser you can use the following settings to change this setting for any browser in your computer.

  1. Open Internet Explorer and click Tools | Internet Options.
  2. Go to the Connections tab.
  3. Click the button at the bottom that says “LAN Settings”
  4. Uncheck the box in the window that comes up that says “Use a proxy server”
  5. If you use NetSetMan, MultiNet Manager, or any other software you have for switching locations, the setting may exist in that software also, so it will need to be changed there as well.

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