Thumbdrive, Flashdrive, or USB Devices Can't Be Used or Recognized, HIMIPX.EXE Error


In this troubleshooting example, an EMachines D725 laptop can recognize USB devices but refuses to load it up. When a Globe Tattoo was plugged in an error message of the dialog box appears as : "The file or folder 'himipx.exe' that this shortcut refers to can't be found" and the dialog box can't be closed. This restricts the USB device to be loaded. The laptop has Win 7 operating system with an expired Avira Antivirus - which I suspect caused the problem. I was able to remove and deactivate the himipx.exe (himip.exe) but I suggested that the laptop should be reformatted as soon as possible. The fix made was not full because they need to have the laptop sent to the school just half an hour when I was "fixing" it.



Date Fixed : December 12, 2010


Problem : When a flashdrive or a USB device is plugged in an error message appears as : "The file or folder 'himipx.exe' that this shortcut refers to can't be found"


Owner : Gwen Amante
Unit : Emachines D725 T4400 2 GB RAM
Operating System : Windows 7


Technician : Drokz
Weblog : http://clhidohsr.blogspot.com


INTERVENING FACTOR :

- The laptop needs to be fixed around 30 mins


OBSERVATION :

- The laptop just boots fine and there seems to be no problem. But when a flashdrive or thumbdrive or any USB device is being plugged in, an error message appears and the dialog box could not be closed and likewise the USB device is refused to be recognized.


TROUBLESHOOTING PROCEDURE :

- Since the antivirus has already expired, I have a suspicion that a virus must have caused the problem. So I plugged in a wifi kit (Globe Tattoo) then a dialog pops up and shows the himipx.exe error. So I checked in the task manager if the himipx.exe is active in the memory but what I found out was its process name is himip.exe. So I need to find himip.exe in the registry and manually delete it.

- To be able to find himip.exe in the registry, press Win+R and type in "regedit". As the registry dialog box appears, click or highlight "My Computer" and go to the "Edit" tab then to "Find" then type in the text input box "himip.exe" and press "Enter". A few seconds after, it should display in the left pane of the registry dialog box a string value entry named "himip.exe" then click right on it then choose delete.

- You have just deleted the first himip.exe and you need to find the other string value by going to "Edit" tab again then to "Find Next". It should reveal another himip.exe string value entry and delete it.

- Now the known registry values has just been deleted, we need to disable the startup item for "himipx.exe" or "himip.exe" in the System Configuration Utiity. In order to do so, press "Win+R" then type "msconfig". As the System Configuration Utility appears, go to the "Startup" tab and uncheck the the item for "himipx.exe" then click "ok". Restart your computer.

- As I have accomplished this and had the computer successfully boot up, I tried to plug in a USB drive (Globe Tattoo) and the error message did not come out! I was already able to use the wifi kit then later uninstalled the expired Avira Antivirus and replaced it with the 1 year trial of Avast Pro. The laptop is now ok but I strongly suggest that it should be reformatted.


SUMMARY :

The Emachines D725 laptop virus infected by the malware "himipx.exe" or "himip.exe" could not be able to use a flashdrive or a thumbdrive or any USB device. The only way to do this aside from having your computer scanned by a good and updated antivirus is to manual deletion of the registry values of the "himipx.exe" and its derivative "himip.exe" and disabling its startup item in the System Configuration Utility. I also found no other problem made by this type of malware so far.

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