links retrospective

I know I beat this to death yesterday, but my laptop is at it again, 
blocking links. However, today the problem corrected itself when I killed an 
untitled program that popped up and grabbed IE when I tried to open a link 
in an email.
Once that was done the links all worked, and quickly.  Not only that, but 
one of the support apps for my hp printer also appeared to start 
functioning.
I don't know if this is Norton, or malware, or windows, but for some reason, 
IE and an hp utility app are held in a strangle hold by this elusive 
program.

The only reason I'm mentioning this is to see if anyone else has experienced 
this and can share some knowledge.

Anyway, thanks and I'll let this die off if no one has anything to add.
--le

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