When I type in google.com, on IE I get the type of 404 where the browser navigation bar's adress changes to "http:///", and on FireFox I get a regular 404. However, when using AOL (AOL original software, not "AOL Explorer"), Google works just fine as I am Googling to find the Google problem. A ping returns what seems to be normal (Reply from 126.96.36.199 bytes=32 time=55ms TTL=224; then 45ms, 43ms, 42ms, sent/rec. 4 0% loss), and the hosts file is empty except for localhost. There are two computers on this router, and Google does not work in IE on either one. On the computer I am using now Google works through AOL, on the other one I have FF installed and Google does not work. McAfee is installed on both computers, and I have ended the processes for current user on this comp, but on the other computer I went to msconfig (which, contrary to popular belief, actually sets the settings in services to disabled when applicable) and unchecked them all. I have done this on many public computers so I know that doing this does not leave anythinhg "hidden" running the virus software.
I am well aware of the horrible setup of these computers. The owner of these computers is rather stupid in most ways (he asked me, for example, if I had Google installed, and insisted that the computer had a virus because Lavasoft has started hosting their install files at download.com), but he will be aware if I completely disabled McAfee on the current computer or if I install anything (since it gives you the "New Software Installed" note on the Start Menu and his logon is passworded). He's even got a registry cleaner on one of them (and though I believe there are a few that do work, he isn't intelligent enough computer-wise to even try and evaulkate them). I can install software on the other computer but I'd greatly prefer not to. The ISP is Comcast and the router is whatever default router was provided by them. OS is XP Home.