Possible fix for corrupted Winsock settings
If your Windows machine's Winsock settings have been corrupted by a program, this procedure MAY restore the defaults.

Problem: Computer will dial the Internet as usual, but will no longer connect to Web sites. The problem usually appears when installing or removing some Internet applications, including new.net and WebHancer. (Fixes for these specific products are available by clicking on the links just listed.)

J.B. sends the following piece of advice:

FYI (and note that this is UNTESTED but worked for me as described)

If you 'Install Windows' over the tpo of an existing Registry, the Installer
quite sensibly leaves alone much of what looks good or it does not
understand / need for Windows own use.  This seems to apply to Winsock2.

If (having first donned your tinfoil hat) you RENAME the whole Winsock2 key
'folder' using Regedit to (say) OldWinsock2, then reinstall Windows, you can
get a clean , new version of Winsock2.  Note again that I say 'can get' - it
worked for me. By renaming rather than deleting the key, at least you have a
route back!

F.G. sends an addendum:

There is an easier way of fixing it.  Delete/rename winsock2 key in the registry.  Then uninstall/resinstall communications in add/remove---> windows setup replaces winsock without having to reinstall windows.
Note: If you do not know how to edit the Registry or why doing so isn't generally a good idea, do not use this procedure. It is aimed at advanced users only! It is advised to make a backup of your Registry before attempting.

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