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Sorry about all your problems. :(  Now, this is a long answer, but you're getting years of fishkeeping experience in one response. :cool: )

So, from the top. Ick looks like grains of salt. It's a pain to treat for it, but you can. Raising the temp, and adding salt help, but are not healthy for some fish. For that matter, some medications are also harmful to fish, and tend to mess up your biological cycle. However, if everybody in the tank is sick, it may be your only choice. Ick takes a couple of weeks to treat, as the parasite goes through different stages of its life, and can only be killed at some stages, so you have to treat long enough to kill off the different stages. Raising the temp helps to accelerate these stages, and makes it go faster.

If every fish is dead though, then yes, disinfect the tank. Don't use soap. Rinse everything with hot water and baking soda. Rinse well, let it dry out and then start the tank up again. (If you have only a couple of survivors, put them in a clean NEW bucket with an airstone, change some of the water everyday, keep them warm and watch for signs of disease. Once the tank is up and running again, and they seem healthy, put them back in)

Now, prevention. Yes, Walmarts tend to have sick fish. And they are on central filter systems, so if fish in one tank have it, they've all been exposed to it. To buy healthy fish, look at all the fish in a tank, not just the ones you want to buy. They should be alert, bright eyes, no spots or fungus (moldy fuzzy stuff), no odd whitish patches, no red inflamed wounds. Swimming well, not puffed up, no chewed off fins, etc. And in a good store, ask the clerks if that tank has had any problems - you may or may not get a useful answer.

A tank needs to cycle. (Biological action that changes the fish waste-ammonia - to nitrites, then to less harmful nitrates.) Cycling is an ongoing process, that takes a couple of months to finish, then has to also cycle a bit more everytime you add more fish. So add fish gradually to a tank - a few now, a few later. And for a ten gallon tank, not very many fish overall, I'm sorry to tell you.

If money is tight, don't get a lot of testkits. Spend your money on the healthiest fish you can find, even if they cost more than Walmart. Do regular partial water changes with dechlorinated water - 10-20% a week or every two weeks. Feed very small amounts of food. Get a couple of live plants - Java fern and java moss are really hardy and easy to grow.

Acclimate the new fish to the tank - float the bag in the tank to adjust the temperature, then open the bag and add tank water to the fish over a period of several hours to get the fish changed over from the store water. (Clothespin the bag to the tank side to keep it out of the tank.) Net the fish out, dump the bag down the sink, so you don't bring in any disease from the store.

Good luck. I hope this helps. Please don't get discouraged and quit, as it takes some time to get all this going. And you'll get a lot of conflicting info from everybody - so try not to get confused, there is no one way to do this right.
 

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ps. Don't adjust your pH. 7.4 is fine, and you'll have more problems trying to juggle it. Just keep it consistent, and it will make it much easier to do water changes, which really are important.
 
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