PROBLEM SOLVED WITHOUT REINSTALLING XP I had the "acquiring network address" issue about 3 days ago when I used SuperAntiSpyware to delete a background trojan. A trojan had been running on my system for the past couple of weeks (at least that I know of), and giving background audio ads via Internet Explorer or Google Chrome. Firefox was also constantly crashing. Not sure if this was related to the trojan though. After malware bytes, windows defender and norton antivirus couldn't address the problem I searched online and found SAS. Much to my surprise, SAS found all instances of the trojan (executed the scan in default safe mode - no internet) on the first run. I quarantined the results and deleted without reviewing them. After System was restarted, I started experiencing internet issues both wired and wireless. I have other computers at home and they were just fine. This made me think something went awry with the SAS run. After much deliberation, I did a system restore and ran SAS again. This time I ran a tcp/winsock reset but to no avail. Even on the second try, I overlooked checking the quarantined list and that was a major mistake. After a third system restore, and rerun of SAS, I finally decided to look at the quarantined list. This time I saw a crucial windows file NETBT.SYS in the quarantine along with its registry entries. After searching online, it was clear to me that this file is crucial for proper internet operations on windows. So I took the clean version of file from my other system copied it over, and restarted the system. I imported all the quarantined registry entries and imported them over. After these 2 steps, and a restart I was finally able to get back online. I am writing this here because I don't want others wasting their time trying to reinstall the entire operating system. Unfortunately, none of the websites (including microsoft) have an easy way to copy over the broken system files and registry entries. However, with a little extra time and a bit of manual effort this issue can be resolved. Thanks to SAS for providing an awesome spyware prevention tool. If you have further questions, feel free to pose on this thread.