Thank you for your question.
Even before searching for your answer I was convinced you have been
victim to what is known as spyware or scumware or browser hijacking.
Surprisingly, not much comes up searching for your particular problem
on the Internet, but there are several discussions on this problem on
the Google Groups (Usenet Groups). For example:
"Why is it when I launch Explorer, I get this
instead of my home page opening up? Any help would be
There are several more requests, all virtually identical to yours and
all helpful answers point to to the same solutions.
The best and most complete page to explain what is most likely
happening and how to fix the problems is here:
Dealing with Unwanted Spyware and Parasites
As they mention:
"...Do you have "Spyware" on your system? Parasites or an Unwanted
Search Engine? Don't panic -- this is a learning experience on how
some of these so-called friendly companies treat you as a valued
customer! Many of us are totally amazed (including myself) at just how
sneaky and underhanded some of these companies are...
...What is Spyware? A technology that assists in gathering information
about a person or organization without their knowledge. On the
Internet, "spyware is programming that is put in someone's computer to
secretly gather information about the user and relay it to advertisers
or other interested parties." In some cases even after these programs
have been removed from your system. As such, spyware and or Malware is
cause for public concern about privacy on the Internet. These type
applications also in many cases can cause unknown browser problems..."
Rather than cut and paste or rewrite this page, let me point out the
most pertinent points listed.
Download and run Ad-Aware as they suggest. All programs suggested on
this page have links to the programs you will need.
If you are a power user, also download and run Spybot. In most cases
removing the files or settings recommended by either of these programs
will have no ill effects, but you might lose a setting or cookie that
can easily be replaced or reset.
After these, try resetting your home page and see if it sticks. If
not, download and run CWShredder, as listed on the above mentioned
If running this does not solve the problem, the next step is Hijack
This, which is well described on this page. With this program, you
will output a file which can then be posted on the Hijack This forums.
Volunteers there are quick to help you analyze the file results and
details what is causing your browser hijack problem. As a matter of
fact, you might enjoy reading the solutions they have found for others
in the forums.
I realize this is an annoying and sometimes complex problem to solve.
I think you will agree the MVPS page is an excellent tutorial and link
to all the tools you may need to get things working right again and I
encourage you to read it throughly before proceeding with fixes. Post
here with a Request for Clarification if I can further explain things
for you, clarify this answer or provide more help.
I trust my research has provided you with the information you will
need to fix this problem. If a link above should fail to work or
anything require further explanation or research, please do post a
Request for Clarification prior to rating the answer and closing the
question and I will be pleased to assist further.