error messages.
4 3>
7
25274 81181
6
PC ERRORS
June/July 2004 - Vol. 8, Issue 3
Smart Computing Reference Series
In an ideal world, computers would never
crash and programs would never run into
problems. Or at least, if those things did
occur, your PC would notify you about any
glitches in a way that let you quickly patch
things up and continue working.
Uh, time to wake up. PCs run into problems
all the time, and they typically respond by
sending you a message that is either indecipherable or too vague to be of any use.
In this issue we translate those arcane computing error messages into plain English, and
we point out potential solutions to the problem. Use this issue as a handy reference for
whenever you encounter PC errors.
WINDOWS XP
12
Windows XP Installation Errors
Don’t Get Stopped Before You Start
18
Windows XP Startup & Shutdown Errors
Keep Windows Running Smoothly
26
Windows XP Hardware Errors
Keep Windows & Devices In Sync
34
Windows XP Software-Related Errors
Keep Working Despite Problems
42
Windows XP Network & Online Error Messages
Get Connected & Stay Connected
ERROR MESSAGES
4
Error Terror
Your PC’s Scary Messages Can Help You
Resolve System Conflicts
6
Don’t Shoot The Messenger
Error Messages Contain Helpful
Troubleshooting Information
7
Big, Bad & Blue
Understand One Of The Most-Feared
Types Of Error Messages
8
Coping With PC Anxiety
Tips & Techniques For Stress-Free Troubleshooting
10
A Helpful Hand
Debuggers Let You Record & Track Error Messages
WINDOWS 98
48
Windows 98 Installation Error Messages
Get Windows Up & Running
54
Windows 98 Startup & Shutdown Errors
Enter & Exit On Your Terms
60
Windows 98 Hardware Errors
Decipher The Undecipherable
66
Windows 98 Software Errors
Don’t Get Shut Down
72
Windows 98 Networking & Online Errors
Stay Online & Productive
ONLINE COMMUNICATIONS
WINDOWS 2000
76
Windows 2000 Installation & Setup
Solutions To Get You Off To The Right Start
82
Windows 2000 Startup & Shutdown Errors
Say Hello & Goodbye With Ease
88
Windows 2000 Hardware Errors
Learn What’s Behind Those Cryptic Messages
94
Windows 2000 Software Errors
How To Figure Out What Your OS Is Trying To Tell You
100
End Connection Headaches
Windows 2000 Networking & Online-Related Errors
123
General Online Errors
We Demystify The Internet’s Cryptic Errors
129
Revive Your Network
Troubleshoot Network & Internet Connection Problems
131
Browser Errors
What You Can Do When The Surf’s Not Up
MICROSOFT OFFICE 2003
104
Microsoft Office System 2003
Installation & Startup Errors
108
Word 2003
Diagnose & Correct Microsoft Word Error Messages
112
Excel 2003
Diagnose & Correct Excel Errors
116
PowerPoint 2003
Work The Bugs Out Of Your Presentations
120
Outlook 2003
Failure To Communicate? We Can Help
HARDWARE
137
Memory, CPU, BIOS & Port Headaches
Tough Solutions For Tough Issues
141
Drive & Storage Problem Solving
Your Data is Gone! Or is it?
144
Troubling Printing & Scanning
Documents Check In, But Try These Tips
When They Don’t Check Out
146
Sound Solutions To Audio Problems
Clearing Up What You Can Hear
148
Video Card & Monitor Errors
Some Are More Visible Than Others
MISCELLANEOUS
150
Speaking BIOS
How To Decipher What Your Computer Is Saying
152
The Fatal Exception Error
Deciphering Processor Exception Codes
Editorial Staff: Ronald D. Kobler / Rod Scher /
Kimberly Fitzke / Sally Curran / Samit Gupta
Choudhuri / Corey Russman / Christopher
Trumble / Calvin Clinchard / Katie Dolan /
Jennie Schlueter / Blaine Flamig / Raejean
Brooks / Rebecca Christensen / Tara Weber /
Michael Sweet / Katie Crooks / Shawn Kupfer /
Dana Montey / Nate Hoppe / Sheila Allen /
Heather Svoboda / Jennifer Hansen / Trista
Kunce / Marty Sems / Chad Denton / Nathan
Chandler / Kylee Dickey / Josh Gulick /
Andrew Leibman / Eric Reed
Web Staff: Missy Fletcher / Dorene Krausnick /
Nick Ray
Customer Service: Travis Brock / Alisha Lamb /
Brandie Humphrey / Becky Rezabek / Lana
Matic
Subscription Renewals: Liz Kohout / Connie
Beatty / Matt Bolling / Patrick Kean / Charmaine
Vondra / Miden Ebert / Kathy DeCoito /
Stephanie Contreras / Nicole Buckendahl
Art & Design: Lesa Call / Fred Schneider / Carrie
Benes / Ginger Riley / Sonja Warner / Leigh
Trompke / Aaron Weston / Aaron Clark / Lori
Garris / Jason Codr / Andria Schultz / Erin
Rodriguez / Lindsay Anker
Newsstand: Garth Lienemann / Kelly
Richardson / Chris McGreer / Jeff Schnittker
Advertising Sales: Grant Ossenkop / Cindy
Pieper / Brooke Wolzen / Eric Cobb
Marketing: Mark Peery / Marcy Gunn / Heather
Mentgen / Amber Coffin
Copyright 2004 by Sandhills Publishing Company. All rights
reserved. Reproduction of material appearing in Smart
Computing REFERENCE SERIES: PC Errors is strictly prohibited without written permission. Printed in the U.S.A. GST #
123482788RT0001. Smart Computing is published monthly by
Sandhills Publishing Company. 131 West Grand Drive, P.O.
Box 85380, Lincoln, NE 68501. POSTMASTER: Send address
changes to Smart Computing, P.O. Box 85380, Lincoln, NE
68501.
INDEX
155
Error Message Index
(An Alphabetical Listing Of Error Messages In This Issue)
Web Services
(For questions about our Web site.)
[email protected]
(800) 368-8304
Customer Service
(For questions about your subscription.)
SPECIAL: For Subscribers Only
Readers who subscribe to any of Sandhills Publishing’s computing publications
may read this issue online. Just go to SmartComputing.com, PCToday.com,
CEtips.com, or ComputerPowerUser.com and link to articles from the online
table of contents for this issue. As an added bonus, subscribers also have
access to these Web-only articles:
Access 2003
Don’t Let Errors Trash Your Database
Publisher 2003
Problem-Free Publishing—Almost
Input Device Errors
What Goes In Should Come Out
[email protected]
Smart Computing
P.O. Box 85380
Lincoln, NE 68501-5308
Hours
Mon. - Fri.: 7a.m. to 8p.m. (CST)
Sat.: 8a.m. to 4p.m. (CST)
To Place An Order Or Change An Address
(800) 733-3809
FAX: (402) 479-2193
Subscription Renewals
(800) 424-7900
FAX: (402) 479-2193
http://www.smartcomputing.com
Authorization For Reprints
(800) 334-7458
FAX: (402) 479-2104
Editorial Staff
[email protected]
FAX: (402) 479-2104
131 W. Grand Drive
Lincoln, NE 68521
Advertising Staff
(800) 848-1478
120 W. Harvest Dr.
Lincoln, NE 68521
FAX: (402) 479-2193
Error Messages
Error Terror
Your PC’s Scary Messages Can
Help You Resolve System Conflicts
ou’re probably familiar with the
sinking sensation you get when a
car’s service engine light illuminates.
That ominous, vaguely threatening
feeling occurs again when your
computer displays portentous and vague error
messages. In both cases, drivers/users are left
pondering, and maybe panicking, about the
unexpected problem: What in the world went
wrong? And what do I do next?
Y
■ Elusive Errors. Error messages aren’t evil
monkey wrenches that clog the gears of your
computer’s systems—but they are signs that
something isn’t quite right. Pinpointing the
problem, even if you have a clearly written
error message at your disposal, is not always
easy because your computer is so complex,
incorporating hardware, numerous programs,
and an OS (operating system) that supposedly
helps each of those components play nice.
4 • PC Errors
The next time you become livid at a vague
error message, consider the multitude of challenges facing software developers. They not
only have to create cutting-edge applications on
tight deadlines, but they also have to make sure
their product doesn’t conflict with the programs
and hardware components that will likely be on
their customers’ computers. Developers do their
best to smash the worst of their software’s bugs,
but then the program’s release date draws near,
forcing companies to move forward in a hurry.
Randy Camp, MusicMatch’s vice president of
software and research and development, says
that in these situations, “programmers may forget to omit error messages created during the
debugging process, or they may be overlooked
because of time and money restrictions or higher-priority user-interface items.” As a result,
users may not only come across a vague error
message, they might even see messages that
programmers didn’t intend for the public eye.
When programmers beat their tight coding
deadlines, they take a step back and try to
write clear, concise error messages that help
users diagnose and fix problems. But as you
know, few error messages are really that helpful. One reason is that programmers just don’t
have the time (or enthusiasm) for creating topnotch error messages. As a result, their sloppy
error messages utilize esoteric English or jumbled alphanumeric codes that mean nothing to
end users. Worse yet, many error messages are
composed by people who’ve never developed
an application themselves, meaning the writers don’t have an intricate knowledge of the
product’s inner workings. Other times, the
opposite occurs—an engineer who helped
build the program writes the messages, but
does so in language that’s of no assistance to
end users. Still, unhelpful error messages are
better than no error messages at all. Without
them, programs would simply freeze, fail, or
go berserk with zero explanation. Error messages give us a starting point for taking the
first steps toward addressing problems that, if
undetected, could damage valuable data.
Hardware and OS errors. Your computer’s
hardware and OS spawn many of the messages you see, in part because the OS has such
an intense job. It must coordinate the activities
of all hardware and software and keep tabs on
many separate OS functions, too. Programmers assure hardware and software compatibility by testing their OS with as many setups
as they can, but there are always unknown
configurations that cause problems.
When an OS encounters unfamiliar or newly
revised hardware and software, conflicts may
occur due to incompatibilities, or because more
than one product demands the same resources
as another. There are a few OS-related errors
that happen more often than others, and one is
called a fatal exception error. Often called BSOD
(Blue Screen of Death) errors because of the blue
screen and white text that appears, fatal exception errors are the bane of all computer users, as
these errors generally halt all programs and
prompt users to restart their PCs. You can read
in-depth details about BSOD errors in the article
“The Fatal Exception Error” on page 152, but for
your reference, BSOD errors typically occur due
to an incomplete or inefficient third-party program. Often the program in question requests
system resources (such as memory) that aren’t
available, and if the program becomes unstable,
the OS puts a stop to the process and requires
you to restart your computer.
Error Messages
Many users also see Windows protection or
STOP errors, which usually occur at startup.
Like fatal exception errors, protection errors
freeze processes and force you to restart your
PC. Protection errors happen for many reasons, such as driver conflicts, viruses and
worms, a corrupted Registry, hardware malfunctions, and more.
You might also encounter GPFs (general
protection faults) or any number of illegal operation errors. GPFs occur due to a variety of
hardware and software problems and often
appear when your processor receives invalid
that imprecise message won’t necessarily help
you fix the problem. Other messages may indicate that system resources aren’t available
because another program is working, but you
still might not have a clue on how to resolve
the conflict.
These unclear errors are notorious for their
unhelpfulness, at least to ordinary home users;
nevertheless, many error messages offer more
help than those of the past. For example, if you
can’t save a file in a specific format, a program
might well explain why. And if an application
is starved for memory, there’s a good chance
an error message will give
you an accurate heads up.
Things should continue
to improve as companies
provide a more aggressive reaction to errors.
Microsoft lets users send
error reports via email,
hoping to glean information that will help the
company’s products work
better in the future. Miller
indicates Corel’s applications offer a similar
capability and says, “the
software offers to transmit
a snapshot of related system data via email that
These days, when a program crashes, Microsoft wants to know about
enables programmers and
it. When a programming problem shuts down an application, you may
testers to get to the root
see a dialog box like this one, which offers to send data about the error
of problems as quickly
to Microsoft’s software development teams.
as possible and ensure
the top concerns are adinstructions from an application. Illegal opera- dressed in future updates.”
tion errors appear because the computer can’t
complete the instructions it receives, and thus, it ■ What You Can Do. When you see an error
stops the process and alerts you with an error.
message, be sure to make a copy of it. DeOther software errors. Just like OS pro- pending on the circumstances, you may be
grammers, the people who develop third-party able to highlight the error message and its
programs must create software that will work description using your mouse pointer. Then
with a sprawling list of hardware, as well as press CTRL-C to copy the message, open a
popular programs from other companies. word processing program, and press CTRL-V
That’s a daunting task, in part because each to paste the information into a blank docuprogram on the end user’s computer needs to ment. Save the file for future reference. If you
share the CPU, RAM, and other system can’t copy and paste the message, get out your
resources. It’s a failure to anticipate problems trusty pen and notepad and jot down the mesthat generate errors. “In general, warning and sage in its entirety.
After you copy the error message, try reerror messages are used to indicate that a situation has occurred that was not expected,” starting your computer to see if that resolves
says Russ Miller, director of software develop- any problems you experienced. Often, simply
clearing your PC’s memory with a restart will
ment for Corel.
Sometimes, an error message will offer a set things back to normal with no extra effort
generalized explanation that the program isn’t from you. Recurring error messages are more
compatible with a hardware component, but frustrating because of their persistence, but
depending on the situation, you might be able
to resolve such errors very quickly. Check out
the following tips to combat common errors.
New installations. Many errors surface
soon after you install new hardware or software because conflicts often occur between the
new product and previously installed components. To put an end to such messages, you
might be able to uninstall the program or hardware (and hardware drivers) and then restart
your computer to an errorless state.
If you do find that removing a new product eliminates errors, you might have to do
some research to figure out the source of the
conflict before you can reinstall the new
product. Check the manufacturer’s Web site
for updated drivers, search support areas for
known conflicts, and contact technical support for assistance. Sometimes tech support
gurus can help you tweak a setting to end
software conflicts.
Let it finish. Developing new computing
habits can also limit the number of error messages you see. When you first start up your
PC, let the hard drive come to a complete stop
before starting a task; this lets your computer
load all necessary drivers and operating system components necessary for efficient and
error-free operation. The same concept works
for your other programs. Let each program
start up or shut down completely before you
move on to another job.
Look it up. You can investigate Windows
error messages on Microsoft’s support site
(support.microsoft.com). Click Search The
Knowledge Base, select your OS, and enter
part of the error message in the Search For text
box. You may well find information here to
help fix recurring PC problems.
■ Just The Beginning. Now you understand a few of the reasons that perplexing and
annoying error messages wind up on your
monitor. You also know that such messages
often occur because too many components are
competing for the same system resources.
Keep reading and you’ll see detailed explanations of error messages and the best troubleshooting techniques for defeating them (see
the article, “Coping With PC Anxiety” on page
8). You will probably never own an error-free
system, but with the knowledge you absorb
here, you won’t panic at every error message
you encounter, and your computing sessions
will be less stressful and more productive. RS
by Nathan Chandler
PC Errors • 5
Error Messages
Don’t Shoot The Messenger
Error Messages Contain Helpful
Troubleshooting Information
rror messages can seem overwhelming if we don’t understand
why they happen or how to prevent them. It helps to remember
that an error message does not cause the problem; it is merely
the messenger. Error messages are much less intimidating if you view
them not as signs of doom but as valuable tools that hold clues to
E
Title Bar. This part of an error message should be
familiar to most users because you see a title bar
at the top of all windows and dialog boxes.
Usually, the title bar displays the name of the current program or the title of the open document or
folder. In an error message, the title bar might
contain the name of the program that generated
the error (such as Internet Explorer), the type of
error (such as Windows Protection Error), instructions (such as Restart Windows or Insert Disk), or
a warning message (such as Warning or Error).
program and system failures. Understanding each part of an error
message can help you decipher the information and eliminate
the error. RS
Compiled by Kylee Dickey
Message Body. This is the part of the error message that is in plain English
and, ideally, tells you what happened, why it may have happened, and how
you can correct the problem. Some error message bodies are well written and
provide many details while others are relatively brief. Read the message body
carefully, as the message body will often direct you to specific files and actions
that have caused the error or that may eliminate the problem.
Response Mechanism. All error messages have some
type of response mechanism. The most basic
response mechanism is a simple OK or Close button
that follows the message body. More elaborate
response mechanisms might first ask what action you
would like to take and then offer a series of buttons,
such as Yes, No, and More Info. For example, if the
message body indicates that the system may become
unstable, the response mechanism might consist of
the following three components:
• the question “Would you like to proceed anyway?”
• a Yes button
• a No button
A more basic response mechanism might have no
text and only a simple Restart button.
Details Button. Not all error messages have a Details
button. Those that do can provide information specific to your system and the way you were using it prior
to and at the time that the error occurred. When you
click the Details button, you will usually see strings
of computer code. Although this code may mean little to you, this information can help diagnose the
problem if you contact technical support.
6 • PC Errors
Error Messages
Big, Bad & Blue
Understand One Of The Most-Feared
Types Of Error Messages
he sight makes many computer users tremble: the BSOD (Blue
Screen Of Death). Chances are that if you’ve used Windows for a
while, you have, at one point or another, encountered the BSOD.
Even Bill Gates had the misfortune of seeing a BSOD on his computer
screen during his Windows 98 presentation at Comdex Spring 1998.
The BSOD is one type of Windows error message. Unlike the error
message shown in the last article, the BSOD is a full-screen error message. With its bright blue background and white text, the BSOD is hard
to miss. Sometimes it signals that an individual program must shut
down. Other times, the BSOD indicates that the error is so grave that the
entire system must shut down.
The BSOD exists in Windows 3.1/9x/Me. You will also find something very similar to a BSOD in Windows NT/2000/XP. These more
recent OSes have an error message called a STOP message that looks
similar to and has many of the same elements as a BSOD.
T
Type Of Error. The first part of a
BSOD tells you what type of error
occurred. In most cases, the error
is a fatal exception error, an error
so great that it requires that the
offending program close.
Various types of errors may cause a BSOD. For example, a bad device
driver, a hardware conflict, or even an error in the Registry may prompt
a BSOD. One of the most common causes of a BSOD is that Windows
can’t boot from the hard drive. Corrupted data on a hard drive can cause
a BSOD, as can the installation of incompatible memory modules.
The most common type of BSOD is a fatal exception error, an error that
forces the current application to shut down. This happens when an unexpected event, or exception, occurs. If no code exists to handle the exception,
the program cannot proceed, and Windows will display a fatal exception
error message. For more information about fatal exception errors, see “The
Fatal Exception Error: Deciphering Processor Exception Codes” on page 152.
With so many possible causes, it helps to understand the parts of a
BSOD and its language so you can diagnose the problem. RS
Compiled by Kylee Dickey
Error Code. This two-character DOS code ranges
from 00 to 0F. It provides further information about
the type of error that occurred. In this example, 0D
indicates a general protection fault, an error that is
unique and does not meet the definition of any of
the other fatal exception types.
Memory Address. This string of characters is the memory address. It tells
you the precise location of the error in
the system memory.
Location Of Error. Here, the BSOD tells you
where the error occurred. In this error message,
we can see that the problem occurred in a VxD
(virtual device driver), a file that manages memory to ensure that programs don’t access the
same devices simultaneously.
Offending Device Or Program. This is the
name of the device, program, or file that
prompted the error. In this message, the BSOD
tells us that the VFD (virtual floppy disk) caused
the error.
Response Mechanism. Finally, the BSOD offers at least
one response mechanism. In this error message, there
are two response mechanisms. First, you can press any
key to exit the offending program but continue working. This gives you a chance to save open documents
before you restart your PC. Second, you can press
CTRL-ALT-DELETE to immediately restart your PC.
Message Body. After the technical information,
the BSOD briefly describes, in plain English,
what action you should take (or what action will
be taken automatically). In the pictured BSOD,
because a fatal exception error occurred, the
program cannot continue. The BSOD explains
that the application will shut down.
PC Errors • 7
Error Messages
Coping With PC Anxiety
Tips & Techniques For Stress-Free Troubleshooting
probably software-related. You’d want to start
troubleshooting other hardware, such as the
scanner’s cable and power connections
Once you’ve located the source of the
problem and determined whether it’s caused
by hardware or software, you can begin the
troubleshooting process.
ooner or later, you’re going to have
computer problems. That’s not a warning; it’s a guarantee.
Fortunately, how you react to those problems is up to you. While some of us remain
calm, others stress out. Still others scream
and panic much like students in bomb squad
school about to fail their first and final exam.
Needless to say, such reactions are unhealthy.
That’s why we want to help you handle your
PC problems stress-free. Here are a few troubleshooting essentials that might help not only to
get you through your next computer crash, but
help keep your blood pressure down, as well.
S
■ Find The Root Of The Problem. The first
thing to do when your PC misbehaves (aside
from sighing, gasping, and moaning) is to locate
the source of the problem. You might be able to
8 • PC Errors
determine this by tracing your steps. Try to
remember what you were doing before the problem occurred. Take note if you’ve recently
installed a new program, saved or deleted an
odd-looking file, or moved your computer to a
new location. Don’t disregard anything.
If you’re lucky—well, perhaps “lucky” isn’t
the right word—an error message will accompany the problem. If so, write it down. This will
prevent you from later forgetting what went
wrong. Your notes might also come in handy if
you need to call a technician. Moreover, error
messages sometimes contain important clues as
to whether your problem is hardware- or software-related. Let’s say you’re trying to upload
images from your scanner but keep getting an
error message saying your computer is unable
to connect to the scanning device. Chances are,
your PC didn’t cause the problem. Nor is it
■ Troubleshooting Hardware. Let’s be
honest, you don’t want to open your computer
unless you have to. So before you go reaching
for a screwdriver, listen for irregular noises
coming from inside your PC. A ratchety
“zzzzz” sound may mean a stray wire is
touching the fan blades or that the fan motor is
low on lubricant. A grinding noise may indicate a problem with the hard drive. (If that’s
the case, save the drive’s data immediately:
The motor or head system, which contains
read/write heads that record and retrieve
information from within the drive’s case, could
be preparing to fail. You have a right to panic.)
Try solving hardware problems outside
your PC by first making sure the hardware is
plugged in and turned on. This may sound
obvious, but more than a few people have
spent valuable time troubleshooting a PC
when all they had to do was just reattach a
loose cable or flip a switch.
If the power and cable sources check out
OK, refer to the Device Manager. In Windows
XP, right-click My Computer, select Properties,
choose the Hardware tab, and click Device
Manager. Navigate to the hardware device
that is giving you problems. A small yellow
circle and an exclamation point or question
mark to the left of the device’s name indicates
that Windows has detected a problem. Click
the exclamation point, and you might be
directed through a series of problem-solving
steps. If not, right-click the device, uninstall it,
and remove it from Device Manager. Then
reboot your computer. Windows will redetect
the hardware, hopefully without the problem.
If your computer won’t reboot, try starting it
in Windows’ diagnostics mode, called Safe
Mode. In Safe Mode, Windows uses only the
most vital drivers and components, which limits the numbers of tasks you can perform but
Error Messages
makes it easier for you to spot problems caused
by newly installed drivers. To enter Safe Mode,
start your computer and begin tapping the F8
key until an Advanced Options menu appears.
Select Safe Mode and press ENTER.
WinXP users can add Safe Mode to their Boot
Menu. Right-click My Computer and select
Properties. Choose the Advanced Tab. Under
Startup And Recovery, click Settings. Then, in the
resulting Startup And Recovery dialog box, click
the Edit button under System Startup. After
Notepad opens, copy the last line of text and
paste it in the next line. Delete the description
inside the quotes (most likely “Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition”) and replace it with Safe
Mode. In the same line, change “/fastdetect” to
“/safeboot:minimal/sos/bootlog”. Now click File,
Save, and then exit Notepad. Click OK twice
(once to close the Startup And Recovery dialog
box and again to close the System Properties dialog box). The Safe Mode option will appear the
next time you boot your computer.
Use the Device Manager in Windows to check
hardware problems, such as missing drivers and
malfunctioning system devices.
those applications running in the background,
along with a reading of how much memory
each task is using. If too many programs run
at once, or your system gets low on memory
resources, you’re likely to notice a slowdown
in your computer, perhaps even a BSOD (Blue
Screen of Death).
Items listed under the Processes tab as
LOCAL SERVICE, NETWORK SERVICE, and
SYSTEM typically can’t be closed, but other
items can be (select the program and click the
End Process button). You might be able to end
slowdowns by closing some of these items.
Just don’t close any applications if you aren’t
sure what they are.
The best way, however, to end freezes,
crashes, slowdowns, and even some glitches is
to simply reboot your computer. If you think
you’ve caused a problem by accidentally deleting a necessary file, try recovering if from
the Recycle Bin or a backup disk. Windows
Me/XP users have the option of using System
Restore. (Click Start, point to All Programs,
Accessories, System Tools, and select System
Restore.) System Restore, although not a backup utility, monitors system and program files
and creates restore points at selected intervals.
If a user with either of these OSes experiences
a problem, she can revert the system to a state
when it worked properly.
WinXP users also have access to The Last
Known Good Configuration feature. This feature will revert your OS to the same
settings in effect the last time your
computer started successfully. To use
The Last Known Good Configuration
feature, start your computer, tap
the F8 key to enter the Windows
Advanced Options menu, select Last
Known Good Configuration (your
most recent settings that worked),
and press ENTER.
■Troubleshooting Software. Software
glitches occur far more frequently than hardware glitches. That’s because software (which
includes the operating system, OS utilities, and
other applications) is responsible for carrying
out every single task the computer
If a program stops responding, try
performs. And when you consider that multiclosing it through Windows Task
ple programs may be running at any given
Manager (press CTRL-ALT-DELETE).
moment—either behind the scenes or in your
computer’s foreground—it’s no surprise that applications occasionally
conflict with one another.
Viruses and bugs, however,
cause most software problems.
Viruses are better prevented than
fixed (with antivirus software and
firewalls), but users have less control over bugs (which are actually
coding errors or defects within
the software program). A good software company will offer updates,
■ Tech Support: The Last Resort
or patches, to fix bugs in its prodDuring major crises you may have
ucts, but often minor bugs can be
no choice but to refer to technical
eliminated by the user.
support. Try to make this your final
If you experience problems imoption. Tech support can be expenmediately after you’ve installed Windows Me and XP users can restore their computers to an earlier date
sive and time consuming, especially
a new program, try simply unin- and time using the System Restore feature.
if you seek help through email,
stalling or reinstalling the software.
which can take days to receive a
If your computer freezes, try pressing the ESC open on your computer. If a program is not response. With patience and a little effort you
key. If the ESC key doesn’t work, try closing working properly, or is “Not Responding,” use can solve most computer problems on your
own . . . without the panicking. RS
the application with the Windows Task man- the End Task button to terminate the program.
Also in the Task Manager, under the Proager. Press CTRL-ALT-DELETE and select
Task Manager. Now choose the Applications cesses tab, you’ll find a list of all the applica- by Eric Melvin Reed
tab. Here you’ll see a list of all the programs tions your computer is running, including
PC Errors • 9
Error Messages
A Helpful Hand
Debuggers Let You Record
& Track Error Messages
o err may be human, but to err and trash
your PowerPoint presentation is distinctly PC. Sometimes the errors are random, other times they’re more predictable, but
they’re always annoying. To make matters
worse, the most annoying errors always seem
to have the most obfuscated error messages.
Windows does come with a number of small
tools to help you track and, in some cases,
solve application errors.
Perhaps the best known tool is Dr. Watson.
If you have Windows, chances are you have
Dr. Watson installed. The good doctor, however, has gone through a number of changes
over the years and works differently depending on which version of Windows you’re
using. A handful of additional tools can provide extra help in solving errors. Windows
XP, for instance, lets you submit error reports
to Microsoft each time an error occurs. Other
tools help catch errors that Dr. Watson may
miss. We’ll take a look at some error debugging tools and show you how you can use
these tools to help pinpoint problems.
Watson sits in the
background waiting
for errors to occur.
When Dr. Wat-son
detects an error, it
takes a snapshot of
everything
that’s
going on in the system
and saves the data to a
log file. You may be able
to use some of the information in the log to pinpoint where errors are
occurring, but you’ll find the
log files are most helpful
when submitted to technical
support teams.
In newer versions of Windows,
Dr. Watson is constantly running. Windows
2000/XP users do not need to start Dr.
Watson manually and will not see any indication that Dr. Watson is running.
On older systems, users will need to start
Dr. Watson before it can log any errors. In
Windows 98/Me, click Run in the Start Menu
■ House Calls. As we mentioned above, and type drwatson. You’ll see an icon in the
Dr. Watson is perhaps the most well-known System Tray when Dr. Watson is running.
debugging application for Win-dows. Dr.
Win98/Me users who are experiencing frequent but random errors
may want to make a
shortcut to Dr. Watson
and place it in the Startup program group in the
Start menu. This will
load Dr. Watson each
time the system boots.
To create a shortcut,
right-click the Desktop,
select New from the
pop-up menu, and click
Shortcut. Type drwatson
in the text field and click
Next. Provide a name
for the shortcut (Dr.
Watson works fine, but
Windows 98/Me users will need to make sure Dr. Watson is running
it can be anything you
before an error occurs. You can set a handful of options in older
want) and click Finish.
versions of Dr. Watson.
Right-click the newly
T
10 • PC Errors
created shortcut and select Copy. Right-click
the Start Menu and select Explore. Doubleclick Programs and Start-up and then select
Paste from the Edit menu.
Options. In Win98/Me, right-click the Dr.
Watson icon in the System Tray and select
Options. You can specify the number of log
entries to save and set the directory where
Dr. Watson will store its logs along with a
handful of other options.
There are more options available to
Win2000/XP users. To open the configuration window, click Run in the Start Menu and
type drwtsn32. Once again, you can set the
number of log entries to save and specify the
directory where Dr. Watson will save its log
files. These versions can also create Crash
Dump files that developers or support staff
can load into other debuggers.
Win2000/XP users will also notice recent
Dr. Watson entries listed at the bottom of the
window. Highlight an error and click View to
view the details.
Log Files. The location where Dr. Watson
saves log files by default depends on the version you’re using. Open the configuration
window using the method described above to
locate the directory where Dr. Watson saves
its log file. Older versions on Win98/Me systems use a .WLF file extension while newer
Error Messages
name (also called a sym- support department even if you’ve filed an
automatic error report.
bol).
If the application is a
Microsoft application, try ■ Safety Net. In older versions of Windows,
searching Microsoft’s unexpected errors can slip through if Dr.
online Knowledge Base Watson isn’t running. Older versions of
( s u p p o r t . m i c r o s o f t Windows still catch and record errors in a file
.com). It may be useful to called Fault.txt located in the C:\Windows
include the application directory.
Entries in this file are small, especially
name, error code, and
symbol (if any). If the error compared to the wealth of data provided by
is from another applica- Dr. Watson. Nonetheless, they do provide
tion, search the support some basic information you might find helpdocuments from the soft- ful. You’ll find the name of the application
ware’s publisher. Other that caused the crash and the name of the
Recent errors are listed in the Dr. Watson configuration screen,
handy utilities in-clude module that crashed along with a date and
but errors will remain in the log file even after you’ve cleared
Google (www.google time stamp. A few other technical details are
entries from the configuration window.
.com) and Google Groups provided, but they’ll mostly be of use to technical personnel. Addition reports are
(groups.google.com).
versions running Win2000/XP use a .LOG
In some instances, you may be able to appended to the end of the file, so you’ll find
extension.
track down a software conflict between two the most recent errors listed at the bottom of
In Win95/98, double-click the Dr. Watson or more applications and find a simple the file.
icon and then click Open Log File in the File workaround. Though in most cases, you
menu. Users with Win2000/XP can open probably will have to contact the software’s ■ Limitations. Dr. Watson and other error
recent logs from the configuration menu as tech support department. Submitting Dr. reporting utilities do have somewhat limited
described above. If you’ve cleared out entries Watson logs may prove helpful. Even if the use. They will not, for instance, help with
in the configuration window, you can still developer is unable to fix the problem in a major errors involving the OS itself (we’ll
open the Drwtsn32.log file in a text editor timely manner, the company
such as Wordpad (log files may be too large may be able to fix the probto open in Notepad).
lem in future revisions.
Logs can be very long, and most of the
information is of no use to you unless you’re ■ Error Reporting. In
a programmer. Nonetheless, in some in- WinXP, Windows offers to
stances you might be able to find some useful report any errors directly to
information buried in a Dr. Watson log.
Microsoft any time an error
Each entry starts listing the date, time, and occurs. This may or may
name of the application that crashed. Names not be helpful depending on
provided are file names rather than generic the situation. Regardless,
program names (for instance, Wmplayer.exe due to privacy concerns,
instead of Windows Media Player). You’ll error reports are completely
also find a list of modules and other applica- anonymous, and only a
tions running at the time of the crash and a handful of Microsoft develgeneric program error code. You can use this opers have access to these
information to search the Web for other users error reports. Don’t expect If an error caught you without Dr. Watson running, you can find
who may have had similar problems with a Microsoft to get back to you a little extra information about the error in the Faultlog.txt file
specific application.
concerning an error report. in your Windows directory.
You can find the exact point where the Microsoft developers, howproblem occurred. You’ll find multiple head- ever, may notice trends in
ers that read “State Dump For Thread Id submitted reports over time. They can use refrain from making the obvious WinMe joke
xxxxx” (where xxxxx changes). You may see this information in the future to fix common here). These applications are best used to catch
the word Fault in front of one or more of errors.
errors that occur when specific applications
indented lines under these headers. Take a
Remember, the information you submit in crash. In instances where the entire OS sudcloser look at the beginning of any segment these reports is confidential. If you do contact denly locks up, they may be of little use. RS
that contains a Fault line, and you should see Microsoft’s tech support department directly,
a line beginning with Function. In some they will not have access to the report you by Chad Denton
instances, you may be able to find some submitted. Dr. Watson logs, therefore, are
information by researching the function still useful when contacting Microsoft’s tech
PC Errors • 11
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Windows XP Installation Errors
Don’t Get Stopped Before You Start
nce upon a time, installing a new
version of Windows could turn
into a monumental chore fraught
with errors and frustration. We
even recall the times when Windows 95 came on floppy diskettes (about 25 of
them for a new installation). The Web is full of
horror stories from Windows users who suffered through botched installations and spent
countless hours getting their systems to run.
One of WinXP’s many improvements to the
Windows experience is ease of installation.
The vast majority of the time, a WinXP installation is very easy and chugs efficiently along
with little or no interference from you. It’s
almost as easy as inserting the setup CD into
your CD-ROM drive and walking away. If setting up WinXP is boring, that’s a very good
thing. Go get a cup of coffee, prop your feet
up, and relax while Windows does the heavy
lifting. But don’t relax too much. Sometimes
things can go wrong.
When something goes wrong with a WinXP
installation, the setup process halts and reports
an error message that attempts to describe the
problem and, in some cases, what you can do to
fix it. But like most error messages, installation
error messages leave a lot to be desired. If you
don’t have access to another computer while
installing WinXP and the installation trips up, it
can be a very stressful situation when you have
no way of obtaining more information about a
particularly cryptic error message.
Read on to learn more about WinXP installation messages; in the next few pages, we’ll
describe a few common messages, translate
what they say into plain English, and then tell
you how to solve the condition that caused the
error. We hope you will see some common
threads at the heart of many of these error
messages. Knowing what can go wrong and
why will give you the knowledge you need to
prep your system and ensure a smooth, trouble-free upgrade to Microsoft’s best OS.
O
INSTALLATION ERROR MESSAGES
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000000A
irql_not_less_or_equal.”
12 • PC Errors
This error message is triggered when
you are upgrading your system from
Windows 98/Me to WinXP.
Translation: Hmmm . . . This one is not
very descriptive at all. IRQs (interrupt
request lines) are the communication channels via which your hardware devices communicate with your computer’s CPU. When
a device needs the CPU’s attention, it uses an
interrupt request to let the CPU know that it
has data that requires handling. So it’s reasonable to suspect this error message indicates a problem with a hardware device or a
device driver.
Solution: According to Microsoft, the root
cause of this problem is an incompatible hardware device or device driver. To resolve the
problem, restart your computer; if the Setup
program gives you the option to revert to your
previous OS, take it. When your old OS
(whether it’s Win98 or WinMe) restarts, uninstall any antivirus and boot manager software
and “clean boot” your computer. A clean boot
is a simplified boot sequence that prevents
device drivers, startup programs, and other
settings from loading at boot time.
To clean boot in WinMe, click Start and Run
and type msconfig in the Open textbox. Click
the General tab and then click the Selective
Startup checkbox. Under Selective Startup,
click the checkbox to the left of each item to
deselect the item. Then, click the Startup tab,
find the *StateMgr entry in the list, and click its
checkbox to select it. Click OK to accept your
changes and click Yes when prompted to
restart your computer.
To clean boot in Win98, the steps are fairly
similar. To launch the System Configuration
Utility in Win98, click Start, Programs,
Accessories, System Tools, and System
Information. Click Tools and then click System
Configuration Utility to launch the application.
Click the General tab and deselect every item
under Selective Startup by clicking each checkbox. Click OK to accept your changes and then
click Yes when you are prompted to restart
your system.
After the computer clean boots, attempt the
WinXP installation again. If the error still
occurs, see the steps below.
If the WinXP Setup program did not give
you the option to revert to your previous OS,
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Microsoft advises that you remove every unnecessary piece of hardware from your system.
This includes any hardware device that you
absolutely don’t need to run the computer, from
USB (Universal Serial Bus) devices to network
and sound cards. If the WinXP setup is still
unsuccessful, try flashing your BIOS (Basic
Input/Output System) to a new version.
Consult with your computer’s manufacturer to
figure out how to do this.
Error Message: When upgrading
Win98/Me to WinXP, you get one of the
following messages:
“Fatal Error:
Setup Cannot Continue. Please
Contact Microsoft Technical Support.
(Error: 3E6h)”
or
“WINNT32 this program has performed an illegal operation. WINNT32
caused an invalid page fault in module
KERNEL32.DLL”
Translation: This message indicates that a
software application or a device caused the
Setup program to crash. The second message
indicates that another application or program
tried to access the same area of memory
assigned to KERNEL32.DLL, one of the critical
Windows DLL (dynamic-link library) files.
Solution: If you have any of the following
programs or hardware devices,
• System Restore Remover Pro by Definition
Software
• Intuit Quickbooks
• Dell Dimension 8100
• Echo Audio sound card
Microsoft recommends that you take some
actions before continuing. Remove both software programs using Add/Remove Programs.
The System Restore Remover Pro works only
with WinMe, so you won’t be able to use this
program with WinXP. Intuit’s Quickbooks is
compatible, but Microsoft advises that you
remove the program, complete the setup
process, and then reinstall it once WinXP is up
and running.
If your Dell Dimension 8100 has a Turtle
Beach Santa Cruz sound card installed, browse
to the C:\DELL\DRIVERS\r33637 folder and
check for two installation files for the sound
card’s drivers, both called Setup.exe. These files
are found at C:\ DELL\DRIVERS \R33637
\9x\Setup.exe and C:\DELL\DRIVERS
\R33637\NT\Setup.exe; rename both programs
to Setup.old.
If you have any of the Echo Audio sound
cards we mentioned above, upgrade their
audio driver to version 6.0 or higher. Go to
www.echoaudio.com to get the files and
instructions for installing them.
If the steps outlined above don’t solve
the problem, perform a clean boot in Win98
or WinMe as we described above and restart
the setup process. If Setup still reports the
error, unplug all peripherals that are not
required to start your computer and restart the
setup process. Microsoft even recommends
that you clean your installation CD-ROM
before proceeding.
This issue brings up an important question:
Should you upgrade to WinXP on top of your
Win98 or WinMe installation or should you perform a clean upgrade? The short answer is no.
Error Message: “Fatal Error: An error
has been encountered that prevents
setup from continuing.
One of the components that Windows
needs to continue setup could not be
installed.
Press OK to view the setup log file.”
Translation: This error message means
the Setup program is unable to read from
your WinXP installation CD.
Solution: If your WinXP installation CD is
very damaged or scratched, you’ll have to get
a replacement from Microsoft. If you’re in the
United States, call (800) 360-7561 Monday
through Friday from 5 a.m. to 7 p.m. Pacific to
order a new CD. If you’re in Canada, call (800)
933-4750 during the same days and hours to
get a replacement.
You may be able to resolve this by copying the setup files from the CD to a folder
in your hard drive. If you’re installing
WinXP to a clean hard drive, insert a Win98
or WinMe startup disk in your computer’s
floppy drive and reboot the computer. At
the command prompt, type the following
command:
xcopy [CD Drive Letter]\i386\*.*
c:\i386\*.* /s /e
This command copies all the files in the
i386 folder of your WinXP installation CD to a
new i386 folder in your C: drive. The /s and /e
command switches ensure that you copy all
directories and subdirectories (even empty
ones) to the new location.
Now, type c:\i386\winnt.exe to continue
the setup process. Winnt.exe is the installation
file that must be used when you’re running
During the installation, Windows XP’s Setup program prompts you to check Microsoft’s Web site
for updated installation files. This is a good option
to choose and ensures a trouble-free installation.
To perform a clean boot, choose Selective
Startup in the System Configuration Utility’s
General tab and uncheck all the checkboxes to
minimize the number of files processed and
loaded by Windows at boot time.
the Setup program from a startup disk command prompt.
If you’re simply upgrading an existing
Win98/Me installation, click Start and Run,
type cmd in the Open textbox, and click OK.
At the command prompt, type the same
command as above to copy the files. When
the copy process is complete, type c:\i386
\winnt32.exe to launch the setup process. The
reason you use the winnt32.exe file in this situation is that you are running the Setup program from within Windows.
Error Message: When upgrading from
Win98/Me to WinXP, you get the following message during setup:
“Setup has disabled the upgrade
option, could not load the file D:\
i386\Win9xupg\W95upg.dll. Setup cannot continue, because this version can
only install as an upgrade.”
PC Errors • 13
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Translation: As the message implies, this
issue occurs because the Setup program mistakenly assumes the upgrade option is not
valid for your software. This occurs in spite of
the fact that you are eligible for an upgrade
because you are obviously installing on top of
an existing Windows installation.
Solution: There are two solutions to this
problem that Microsoft suggests. First, clean
boot your computer and try to run Setup after
the boot process completes. Please refer to the
discussion above to find out how to clean boot
in Win98 or WinMe.
The other solution is to copy the i386 folder
from the WinXP installation CD to a folder on
your hard drive. If you’re already in Windows,
simply use Windows Explorer to browse to the
i386 folder in your WinXP installation CD,
right-click the folder, and click Copy. Browse
to a location on your hard drive, right-click,
and click Paste. The copy process might take a
few minutes because you are transferring a
large amount of data when you do this.
After Setup checks your system for compatibility
issues, it reports its findings to you. Problem
areas may be easily fixable by simply updating
your hardware’s drivers.
Error Message: This one is not a message but a behavior that occurs when
you upgrade from Win98/Me to
WinXP. The WinXP Setup program
freezes during the “Preparing Installation” step.
Translation: Again, this is a symptom that
occurs when performing an upgrade to WinXP
on top of an existing Windows installation.
According to Microsoft, the root cause of this
problem is antivirus software installed with
your previous version of Windows that is running in the background and interfering with
the setup process.
Solution: To resolve this issue, exit Setup
and then disable or uninstall any antivirus
software in your computer. Once the antivirus software is disabled or uninstalled,
restart Setup.
Error Message: After restarting your
computer when an upgrade to WinXP is
complete, the following message may
appear:
“STOP: 0x000000ED (0xaaaaaaa,
0xbbbbbbb, 0xccccccc) UNMOUNTABLE
_BOOT_VOLUME”
(NOTE: aaaaaaa, bbbbbbb, and ccccccc represent various hexadecimal numbers.)
Most Common Error Message
e really can’t pinpoint any
one setup or installation
error message that occurs with
greater frequency than others.
The variety of hardware and
software configurations out
there is truly staggering, so
every situation will be different.
But there are two common situations that crop up time and
time again behind many of the
error messages we’ve examined: upgrading to Windows XP
on top of an existing installation
and not doing a thorough compatibility check.
W
A Clean Upgrade Path
Upgrading on top of your old
Windows installation is, at first
glance, the easiest road to take,
but this road can turn treacherous in a hurry. Upgrading on top
of an old installation means you
instantly transfer all of the problem files and settings associated
with your previous Windows OS
(operating system) to your brand
new OS. In some cases, the
14 • PC Errors
problems are serious enough to
derail the WinXP setup process
itself.
We recommend you take the
time to archive your important
data, reformat your hard drive,
and perform your WinXP
upgrade on a clean hard drive.
Some people think you can’t do
this with an upgrade CD, but
that is not true at all. If the
WinXP Setup program does
not detect a previous Windows
installation on your hard drive,
it requests that you insert your
previous Windows version’s
installation CD into your CDROM drive. Once the Setup program verifies that you have a
bona fide WinMe or Win98
installation CD, the WinXP
installation continues normally.
Does Your System Have
What It Takes?
If you’re going to upgrade
your system to WinXP, visit
Microsoft’s HCL (Hardware
Compatibility List) Web site
(www.microsoft.com/hcl) before
you upgrade. Make a list of your
system’s hardware devices and
software applications and look
for them in this list. If a device or
application is not listed, go to
the manufacturer’s Web site and
see if it has updated drivers or
patches that make the device or
application compatible with
WinXP. In some rare cases, you
may have to upgrade to a new
version. Performing this simple
inventory before you attempt an
upgrade to WinXP may save
you a lot of time and grief when
you attempt to install WinXP. It’s
time well spent.
Another even handier way to
check your system’s compatibility with WinXP before you
upgrade is to let WinXP’s Setup
program do it for you. When
you launch WinXP Setup from
within Windows, you have three
options in the Setup program’s
initial screen: install WinXP, perform additional tasks, and check
compatibility. Clicking the arrow
to the left of the Check System
Compatibility option launches
another window where you can
choose to go to Microsoft’s Web
site and verify your system’s
compatibility yourself or you can
choose to let Setup automatically verify compatibility. Choosing
the automatic compatibility
option launches the Microsoft
Windows Upgrade Advisor,
which checks your system and
compiles the findings into a text
file that’s automatically saved to
C:\WINDOWS\upgrade.txt.
Please note that while running the WinXP Setup program,
the Windows Upgrade Advisor
may launch a window prompting
you to check Microsoft’s Web
site for updated setup files. This
feature, called Dynamic Update,
ensures that your Setup program files are the very latest.
We recommend that you choose
to let Dynamic Update download
and install the latest WinXP
setup files. ■
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
This is another one of those messages
that points to a possible problem with your WinXP installation CD.
Translation: If you have a UDMA hard just completed the WinXP installation,
drive and motherboard controller but are but when you reboot the computer, you
using a standard 40-wire connector cable to discover that WinXP assigned passconnect the drive to the controller and the words to all user accounts. Because you
BIOS is configured for UDMA mode, this don’t know the password Windows
error will be triggered. This is a complex assigned to each account, you can’t log
way to say that you’re using the wrong cable in to any of them.
with your UDMA drive and controller.
Another possible cause of this error message is a damaged file system. If the second
reported memory address is 0xC0000032,
the file system is damaged.
Solution: To resolve the first cause
behind this error message, replace your 40wire IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) connector cable and reset your BIOS settings to
the default options.
To resolve the second problem triggering
the error message, reboot your computer
using either a startup disk or the WinXP
Setup CD-ROM. At the Welcome to Setup Windows generates an upgrade report, saved in a text
screen, press r to launch the Recovery file called Upgrade.txt and saved to your C:\WINDOWS
Console and type chkdsk /r to begin repair- folder.
ing your damaged file system. When the
process completes, type exit to leave the
Recovery Console and press ENTER to restart
Translation: The problem here is the
the computer. If this doesn’t resolve the prob- Setup program did not complete properly.
lem, repeat this process but use the fixboot During the Setup operation, Windows ascommand instead.
signs temporary passwords to each user
account; these passwords are stored in a file
Error Message: This is not an error called setupact.log in your Windows instalmessage, but a symptom: While you’re lation folder. When the Setup program comentering the Product Key during Setup pletes properly, these temporary passwords
while upgrading from Win98/Me, Setup are cleared, allowing you to set up your
cycles back to the Welcome to Setup own password. But if the Setup program
screen.
does not complete properly, the passwords
Translation: This is another one of those are retained.
messages that points to a possible problem
Solution: To resolve this problem, find the
with your WinXP installation CD.
setupact.log file and locate an entry that reads
Solution: To resolve the problem, copy the
“Random password for Username is [passcontents of your installation CD-ROM’s i386 word].”
folder to a folder on your C: drive (using the
Write down the password exactly as it’s
xcopy command we discussed earlier) and written and use it to log on to the account.
run the Setup program from your hard drive. How you do this depends on whether you
To do this, click Start and Run and type configured your file system as FAT32 or NTFS.
c:\i386\winnt32.exe in the Open textbox.
If the file system is FAT32, restart your
Click OK to execute the command.
system using a WinMe or Win98 startup disk.
At the command prompt, type edit c:\
Error Message: Again, this one is not an windows\setupact.log and follow the instrucerror message, but a symptom. You’ve tions above to locate the password.
If the file system is NTFS, configure your
BIOS settings so the computer boots from the
CD drive and insert your WinXP installation
CD into your CD-ROM drive. Restart the
computer, and at the prompt press any key
to boot from the CD. Press r at the Welcome
To Setup screen to launch the Recovery
Console and then press ENTER when
prompted for the administrator password. At the command prompt, input
type setupact.log and press ENTER.
Make a note of the password associated
with each account. Restart the computer
and use the retrieved password to log on
to the user account.
Error Message: “This program cannot
be run in DOS Mode.”
This message appears when you
attempt to execute Setup.exe from
within a DOS real-mode command
prompt.
Translation: The WinXP Setup.exe executable cannot be run from MS-DOS.
Solution: If you need to run the installation from within MS-DOS, type [CD-ROM
Drive]:\i386\winnt.exe to start the Setup
program.
Error Message: After the WinXP Setup
program completes the file-copy
process, the following error message
appears:
“Setup cannot set the required
Windows XP configuration information.
This indicates an internal setup error.
Contact your system administrator.”
Translation: This is WinXP’s way of
reporting a hardware incompatibility issue.
Solution: First, update your system BIOS
to the latest version. Then, determine if any
hardware in your system is incompatible
with WinXP. You can verify this by using
the Setup program’s automatic compatibility check or manually by browsing to
Microsoft’s Hardware Compatibility List
(www.microsoft.com/hcl) Web catalog.
Either update the device drivers or remove
the incompatible hardware from your system. Then restart the Setup program.
PC Errors • 15
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
inding the most confusing error message among so many candidates
was truly a difficult task. But, we think we
found a very worthy nominee. The following error message can occur during
the WinXP upgrade process:
“An unexpected error (768)
occurred at line 5118 in <drive letter>\xpclient\base\boot\setup\setup
.c Press any key to continue.”
When you press any key as instructed, the following error message appears:
“A problem has been detected and
windows has been shutdown to prevent damage to your computer.
PROCESS1_INITIALIZATION_FAILED”
Huh? Again, the Microsoft
Knowledge Base comes to the rescue.
The root cause triggering this error
message is a software program
(namely Roxio’s GoBack) that is
incompatible with WinXP. To resolve
the problem, disable GoBack when
WinXP restarts by pressing the space
bar at the GoBack boot menu, pressing d to disable and pressing y to
confirm. Once GoBack is disabled,
cancel the WinXP setup process and
uninstall GoBack. ■
“Error:
Warning! Setup failed to remove the
setup catalog ieexcep.cat”
or
“Error:
Warning! Setup failed to remove the
setup catalog sp1.cat”
Translation: If the Setup program fails to
delete all of the files in the C:\WINDOWS\
SYSTEM32\CATROOT2 folder (or whatever
drive letter and Windows folder contain the
previous Windows version files), these error
messages may be generated. This is another
one of the many problems that can occur when
you attempt to upgrade to WinXP on top of a
previous Windows version.
Solution: Rename the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CATROOT2 folder to something such
as catold to prevent WinXP’s Setup program
from locating the folder and halting the installation. If you are still in Setup, press SHIFT-F10
to launch a command prompt from within
Setup. At the command prompt, type cd\win
dows\System32 to open the System32 folder
and then type rename CATROOT2 catold,
press ENTER, restart the computer, and
attempt the upgrade again.
If you cannot reach a command prompt
from Setup, reboot the computer from a
Win95, Win98, or WinMe startup disk and
rename the folder from the command prompt.
You can also launch a command prompt by
booting from the WinXP installation CD and
running the Recovery Console.
Error Message: When performing an
upgrade to WinXP from Win98/Me, you
get any one or more of the following
error messages:
“Error: Cannot get main entry point
for C:WINDOWSSYSTEMVIPERSTI
.CPL. Error:127 [ERROR=127 (7Fh)]”
“Error:
The signature for Windows XP edition Setup is invalid. The error code is
fffffdf0.”
or
“The system cannot find message text
for message number 0xfffffdf0 in the
message file for Syssetup.dll.”
or
“Fatal Error:
Setup failed to install the product catalogs. This is a fatal error. The setup log
files should contain more information.”
or
Error Message: During a WinXP installation, you get one of the following error
messages:
“STOP: 0x0000008e”
or
“STOP: 0x00000050 PAGE_FAULT_
IN_NON_PAGED_AREA”
Translation: This error is generated when
one or more of your system’s RAM memory
modules is faulty.
Solution: Remove a memory module and
restart the setup process. If the error reappears, replace the memory module you just
removed, remove a different memory module, and restart the setup process again.
Continue using this procedure until you isolate the specific memory module that is causing the error message.
Keep in mind that WinXP needs at least
128MB of RAM to run properly. If you have
128MB or less of total system RAM, this is a
good opportunity to upgrade your system
Most Confusing
Error Message
F
16 • PC Errors
memory to 256MB or 512MB. The more memory you have when running WinXP, the better;
512MB is probably the optimum amount of
memory you’ll need to run WinXP and all
your other applications efficiently.
Error Message: During the WinXP
installation process, you receive one of
these error messages:
“Failed to install product catalog.”
or
“STOP: 0x0000008E (0x00000005,
0xBF869F22,0xF9470688,0x00000000)”
Translation: This error message is a variation on the “Cannot get main entry point for
C:WINDOWSSYSTEMVIPERSTI.CPL.
Error:127 [ERROR=127 (7Fh)]” message discussed above. Again, if the Setup program fails
to completely remove the CATROOT2 folder
in your previous Windows installation, Setup
will report this error. This error also occurs if
one of your RAM memory modules is faulty.
Solution: To resolve the first possibility,
use the same approach discussed in the
“Cannot get main entry point for C:WINDOWSSYSTEMVIPERSTI.CPL. Error:127
[ERROR=127 (7Fh)]” error message to rename
the CATROOT2 folder.
To determine which of your RAM memory
modules is defective, use the troubleshooting
approach discussed in the “STOP 0x0000008e”
message.
Error Message: When upgrading from
Windows 98/98SE/WinMe/NT to WinXP
Professional, the following error message appears:
“Setup cannot upgrade your current
installation to Windows XP. Your copy
of Windows XP does not support upgrading from an evaluation copy of
Windows. Setup cannot continue.”
Translation: The problem here is your
WinXP Pro installation CD may only be
designed to upgrade an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) version of Windows 2000.
In other words, you have the wrong type of
WinXP installation CD for the type of upgrade
you’re trying to do.
Solution: Contact the OEM or reseller
where you purchased the CD and obtain a
valid WinXP Pro upgrade CD-ROM.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000001E
(0x80000003, 0xBFC0304, 0x0000000,
0x0000001)
[bugcheck code] ([1] [2] [3] [4])”
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Remember, WinXP requires at least
2GB of hard drive
space, so if you’re at the ragged edge of that limit,
fter sifting through a few error messages, we nominated this gem for
the most unusual error message:
“Error Message: An unexpected
error has occurred. (536821760)
occurred at line 1768 in D:\xpclient
\base\boot\setup\arcdisp.c”
This error message gives us absolutely no clue as to what is causing the problem. Fortunately, the Microsoft Knowledge Base does have an answer:
What’s triggering this error message is
a problem with our computer’s memory,
specifically a damaged memory module
or a damaged memory slot (the physical
area in the motherboard where memory
modules are inserted.
We can’t understand why Microsoft’s
Windows developers can’t simply say
that a problem exists with one of your
memory modules. That approach would
at least point you in the right troubleshooting direction. ■
A
try to make some more room.
Translation: Microsoft calls this specific
error message (STOP 0x1E) a bug check code,
which is a programmatic procedure used to
report an illegal instruction detected by the
WinXP kernel. The number 1 represents the
exception code, the number 2 represents the
memory address where the error occurred,
and the numbers 3 and 4 represent the parameters 0 and 1 of the exception.
In plain English, Microsoft uses this error
code to report programmatic errors caused by
insufficient hard drive space, a faulty device
driver, or possibly a BIOS that needs updating. If a device driver is the cause behind the
error message, the name of the device driver
may be displayed in the error message text.
Solution: First, try to make more room
in your hard drive for WinXP. Remember,
WinXP requires at least 2GB of hard drive
space, so if you’re at the ragged edge of that
limit, try to make some more room.
If a faulty device driver is the culprit, upgrade
the driver to the latest WinXP-compliant version
if one is available. If a WinXP-compliant version
of the driver is not available, you may
have to remove the hardware from
your system to make WinXP Setup
work properly.
Finally, perform a flash upgrade to
get your system BIOS up-to-date.
Consult your BIOS documentation to
learn how to upgrade the BIOS; follow all instructions provided by your
BIOS manufacturer to the letter or
you could wind up with major problems if you botch the flash upgrade.
Most Unusual
Error Message
download the file from Adaptec’s Web site at
www.adaptec.com.
Error Message: During the WinXP setup
process, you see the following message:
“Uninstall Option Not Available
There is not enough Space to save
your current operation system.
Your computer has enough disk space
for Windows XP, but it does not have
enough to save your current version of
Windows for backup.
The backup image size is [number
_of_megabytes]
It is recommended that you cancel
Setup now, free additional disk space,
and then restart Setup.”
Translation: This is a surprisingly clear
Windows error message. When WinXP is
installed, the Setup program saves a backup
copy of your previous Windows version to a
folder in your hard drive. This backup is in
two files, BACKUP.CAB and BOOT.CAB,
stored in a folder at C:\Undo. This is done in
Solution: You can do a number of things to
resolve this situation. First and foremost, we
certainly recommend that you take advantage
of the option to back up your current
OS. You never know what might go
wrong with your WinXP installation, so it’s advantageous to have the
option to go back to your old OS,
just in case.
You can cancel the Setup process
by pressing ESC. After you cancel
Setup, reboot into your existing OS
and free up more drive space. If you
have another partition in your system with sufficient space for this
backup, choose this partition when
Error Message: “STOP:
prompted to back up the existing
0x0000001E KMODE_EXCEPsystem files by the Setup program.
The folder structure of the Windows XP installation CD features four
TION_NOT_HANDLED”
This error is not a show stopThis message also mentions folders: DOCS, I386, SUPPORT, and VALUEADD.
per for the Setup program. If you
the device driver aspi32.sys.
choose to simply not do the backTranslation: This is a specific example of a case your WinXP upgrade is not successful up, click Next to continue the Setup proceSTOP 0x1E message; ASPI32.SYS is Adaptec’s and you want to revert to your previous dure. But, remember that you will not be
Advanced SCSI Programming Interface, a Windows version. But in this instance, the able to uninstall WinXP and revert to your
device driver used in CD writers.
Setup program reports there is not enough previous OS if you choose to do this. RS
Solution: Upgrade your system’s ver- space to save this backup copy of your prevision of ASPI32.SYS to version 4.57 or higher; ous Windows version.
by Sixto Ortiz Jr.
PC Errors • 17
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Windows XP
Startup &
Shutdown Errors
Keep
Windows
Running
Smoothly
indows XP, Microsoft’s flagship operating system, is
widely recognized as the
company’s most reliable consumer OS
yet. With WinXP, Microsoft eliminated the Windows 9x architecture from
its consumer OSes and adopted the
technology core of its Windows NT
and Windows 2000 corporate OSes.
This strategy considerably beefed up
reliability and virtually eliminated the
constant crashes that plagued products such as Windows 98/Me.
Windows users hailed the dawn of a
new era of reliable, crash-free
Windows computing.
But in spite of the significant
improvement to Windows reliability,
WinXP is not crash-proof. After all, we
are talking about a program packing
millions of lines of code that must
work in a virtually unlimited variety of computer configurations. And we haven’t even
mentioned the wide variety of computer user
skills, from raw rookies who can barely turn on
their PCs to accomplished experts who love to
tinker with everything in their computers.
WinXP is much improved, but it does crash
from time to time. And sometimes crashes
occur at the worst possible times.
Startup and shutdown crashes are probably
the most frustrating for Windows users. Startup
crashes are especially vexing because you can’t
even get your system going long enough to
diagnose and solve the problem. Shutdown
crashes are frustrating also: Just when you think
you can push away from the computer and go
W
18 • PC Errors
on with your life, a mysterious crash throws a
monkey wrench into your plans. A 15-minute
check-your-email-and-log-off session suddenly
turns into a five-hour troubleshooting ordeal.
When crashes occur, WinXP usually presents
you with a message attempting to describe the
error and, in some cases, telling you what you
can do to fix it. The only problem is, for those of
us who aren’t programmers or Windows
experts, most error messages are virtually
incomprehensible. Instead of making things
clearer, cryptic error messages only muddy the
waters. Seeing “Non-system disk or disk error”
at startup sounds pretty serious, right?
In the next few pages, we're going to cut
through WinXP's gobbledygook and take a
closer look at some common WinXP startup
and shutdown errors.
STARTUP ERRORS
Error Message: “Non-System disk or
disk error . . . Replace and strike a key
when ready.”
Translation: This simply means that
WinXP is attempting to boot from a disk (be it a
floppy diskette or one of your hard disks) that
doesn’t contain the system files
WinXP needs to start. WinXP needs
access to certain bits of information
when it starts up. Your hard drive’s
boot sector, a specific location on the
disk, contains the startup files WinXP
needs to continue the boot process. If
WinXP can’t find those files, the boot
process stops cold.
Solution: This one is either a simple mistake or a catastrophe. First,
check to see if you have a floppy
diskette in your drive. Nine times out
of 10, this error is caused when you
leave a floppy in the disk drive, turn
off the computer, and then turn it on
again without taking the diskette out
of the drive. If the floppy is not a system disk with the required boot files,
WinXP won’t launch. Check the floppy drive, and if there is a diskette in
it, remove it and press any key on
your keyboard. Windows should
now start up normally.
If a forgotten floppy disk is not the
cause, then you’ve got a much bigger
problem on your hands. Somehow,
your hard drive’s boot sector has
been damaged or erased. This is typically caused by either a boot-sector virus or a
hard drive failure. Most antivirus programs let
you create a rescue disk designed specifically
for those times when a virus renders your computer unbootable.
If you created a rescue diskette, insert it into
your floppy drive, restart the computer, and follow the antivirus software’s instructions to
clean the boot-sector infection and restore your
computer.
If you don’t have a rescue diskette, go to a
friend or co-worker who has one and either use
his or use his antivirus software to create one,
even if you use different antivirus programs.
Right now, your main focus should be on disinfecting and booting your computer.
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
If a boot-sector virus is not the cause, the
hard drive’s boot sector, for some reason or
another, has been damaged. WinXP’s Recovery
Console has two utilities you can use to try to
repair your boot sector: FIXBOOT or FIXMBR.
FIXBOOT writes an entirely new boot sector,
while FIXMBR repairs the MBR (master boot
record) in the boot sector.
To run the Recovery Console, boot into
your WinXP setup CD and press r when
prompted. To boot into your WinXP installation CD, restart the computer and enter your
Setup (BIOS [Basic Input/Output System])
program. Your BIOS should have a menu
where you can change the sequence of boot
devices for your computer. By default, your
computer looks for a bootable disk in your
floppy drive first, your hard drive second,
and your CD drive last. Adjust the boot
sequence in your BIOS so your computer
searches for a bootable disc in your CD drive
first (leave the hard drive as the second
choice), insert your WinXP installation disc
into your CD drive, and restart the computer.
Because BIOS programs vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, consult your BIOS’
documentation to find out how to change the
boot device sequence.
To run FIXBOOT, type FIXBOOT [drive] at
the command prompt, where drive is the drive
letter for your boot drive (usually C:). To run
FIXMBR, type FIXMBR [device name], where
device name is the nomenclature the Recovery
Console’s MAP command uses to describe the
various hardware devices in your computer.
For example, you might type FIXMBR
\device\HardDisk0 to restore your boot
record’s MBR. If you don’t enter a device
name, FIXMBR repairs the MBR of the default
system disk.
Error Message: “STOP: 0xc000026C
[Unable to load device driver] Driver” or
“STOP: 0xv0000221 [Unable to load
device driver] Driver” or “STOP:
0xv0000221. Bad image check sum, the
image user32.dll is possibly corrupt. The
header check sum does not match the
computed check sum.”
Translation: These errors have two possible root causes: As the first two messages
imply, the errors can be caused by a device driver file (*.SYS) that is missing or has been corrupted. The third message is pretty straightforward, also: Again, something’s gone awry
with a file—this time with USER32.DLL. This
is one of those critical system files containing
Most Common
Error Message
es, the most common error message
found in Computerland is the classic
“Non-System disk error” message. More
often than not, this error occurs because
we leave a floppy disk in the disk drive
after turning off the computer. When the
computer is turned on again, it attempts
to boot from the floppy disk, which more
than likely does not contain the files
Windows needs to boot normally.
We already gave an exhaustive
overview of this message, including what
to do when a floppy disk is not the cause
(besides panic when you don’t know
what the error means). Most of the time,
the panic is short-lived, and all you have
to do is remove the floppy from the drive
and restart your system. ■
Y
information that WinXP absolutely needs to
run properly.
In a nutshell, a DLL (dynamic-link library)
is a file containing information that another
program (this time, it is Windows itself) needs
to run properly. For example, a DLL file may
contain additional functions that another program’s code may call as the program runs.
Programmers love DLLs because they let them
simply call functions from within their code
instead of having to code them from scratch.
This particular DLL provides functionality
related to the WinXP API (Application
Programming Interface). Bottom line is,
USER32.DLL is very important to WinXP.
Solution: The solution to this problem is to
restore the missing or corrupted files to your
restore the required files. First, how to restore
the drivers:
1. Type cd windows\system32\drivers at the
command prompt to open that directory.
2. Type ren DRIVER.SYS DRIVER.BAK to
rename the corrupted copy of the driver (if
the problem is a corrupted driver; if the driver is just missing, skip this step and proceed to step 3).
3. Type copy [CD drive letter]:\i386
DRIVER.SYS to copy a fresh, functional
copy of the driver from your WinXP installation CD to the WINDOWS\SYSTEM32
\Drivers directory.
4. Type exit and then press the ENTER key to
exit the Recovery Console.
Second, let’s restore USER32.DLL:
1. Browse to the required directory by typing
cd [drive letter]:\windows\system32 at the
command prompt.
2. If you have a copy of USER32.DLL in the
windows\system32 directory that you suspect is corrupt, type ren USER32.DLL
USER32.BAK to rename the file. If the file is
missing, skip to step 3.
3. Type expand [CD drive letter]:\i386
\USER32.DLL_ [drive letter]:\windows
\system32 to copy the new USER32.DLL
file to your Windows directory.
Error Message: “The file C:\windows
\system32\c_1252.nls is missing or
corrupt.”
Translation: As WinXP error messages go,
this is one of the most straightforward. WinXP
is simply reporting that the strangely named
file c_1252.nls has gone AWOL.
Solution: The strategy to solve this problem is the same as in the “STOP: 0xc000026C
[Unable to load device driver] Driver” error:
Restore a fresh copy of the missing or
This seemingly terrifying message is actually quite common, and most of the time, it has a very
simple solution.
system. This is done using WinXP’s Recovery
Console. In the solution to the last message, we
discussed how to access the Recovery Console.
At the Recovery Console’s command
prompt, type the following commands to
corrupted file from your WinXP installation
CD. Again, you must use the Recovery
Console to do this. Once in the Recovery
Console’s command prompt, type the following commands:
PC Errors • 19
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
This problem illustrates a tried-and-true principle of Windows computing:
When upgrading to a new Windows version, always perform a
“clean” upgrade.
• cd C:\windows\system32—
Delete. Click Yes to confirm the
opens the system32 folder in
deletion:
C:\Windows; this is the deHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
fault location of the file.
\SYSTEM\CURRENTCON
• ren c_1252.nls c_1252.bak—
TROLSET\SERVICES\Cdr4_2K
The approach here is to give
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
As this error message advises, the key to solving this problem is using
the existing copy of the file an
\SYSTEM\CURRENTCON
the Recovery Console to copy a functional version of this file to the
extension that disables it by
TROLSET\SERVICES \Cdralw2k
appropriate directory.
preventing WinXP from findHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
ing the corrupted file at startup. If the file
\SYSTEM\CURRENTCONTROLSET\SER
is missing, this step is not necessary.
VICES \Cdudf
• expand [CD drive letter]:\i386
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM
\CURRENTCONTROLSET\SERVICES
\USER32.DL_ [drive letter]:\win
\UdfReadr
dows\system32—This copies a pristine
copy of the file from the WinXP installation CD to the WINDOWS/System32
Error Message: “Hpppt.exe unable to
folder.
locate component. This application
• Do as usual to exit the Recovery Console.
failed because WNASPI32.DLL was
not found.”
Error Message: “Devices or applicaTranslation: The message suggests that
tions disabled. CD Recording soft- Use the Startup tab in Windows XP’s System Configuration Hpppt.exe is executed at Windows startup,
ware will cause Windows to become Utility to view the programs that automatically start with
but because it cannot find the auxiliary file
unstable. Windows has prevented Windows and, if need be, to prevent unnecessary or trouit needs, the program reports the error mesthese drivers from loading. Click here blesome programs from starting.
sage and interrupts the Windows startup
for more details.”
process.
Translation: WinXP doesn’t get along
Hpppt.exe is HP’s parallel port test utilvery well with older versions of Easy CD any files called Cdr4_2K.sys or Cdralw2k.sys, ity, a program that verifies whether or not
Creator software. If you upgraded to WinXP right-click the file names, click Rename, and your parallel port is set to ECP (Extended
and didn’t remove your older copy of Easy CD change each file name to Cd*.old.
Capabilities Port) or EPP (Enhanced Parallel
Finally, you must remove any keys in your Port) mode, two parallel-port configurations
Creator software, WinXP detects this incompatible program and lets you know about it Windows Registry that reference Easy CD that support bi-directional communications
Creator files. Keep in mind, modifying the between your parallel port and whatever
with the above message.
Solution: The solution here is to purge Registry is dangerous, so tread with care. A device is connected to it. Many devices that
your system of all traces of the program. This misstep here and you can easily end up with a connect to your parallel port, such as scanproblem illustrates a tried-and-true principle very sick system. OK, on with our Registry ners and printers, require bi-directional comof Windows computing: When upgrading to a surgery: Click Start and Run, type regedit in munication to allow a software utility that
new Windows version, always perform a the Open textbox, and click OK.
controls the device to get information about
“clean” upgrade. In other words, format your
In the Registry editor, find the following key the status of the printer or scanner.
hard drive to wipe it clean and then upgrade.
and click it to highlight it:
Solution: As you might guess, the key is to
The first step is removing Easy CD Creator.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CUR- prevent the Hpppt.exe program from launchClick Start and Control Panel and double-click RENTCONTROLSET\CONTROL\CLASS\ ing when Windows starts. To do this, remove
the Add or Remove Programs icon. Locate the {4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}
Hpppt.exe from the Startup list of programs by
Easy CD Creator program on the list and click
If you see a value called UpperFilters on clicking Start and Run and typing msconfig in
Remove.
the Registry editor’s right pane, delete it by the Open textbox. Click OK to launch msconfig
The next step is to disable any drivers Easy right-clicking it and clicking Delete. Click Yes (the System Configuration Utility) and click
CD Creator copied to your system. Click Start, to confirm.
the Startup tab. Find the HP Parallel Port Test
Likewise, if you see a LowerFilters value, checkbox and click it. This clears the checkbox
Search, and All Files And Folders. Type
cdr*.sys in the All Or Part Of The File Name use the same procedure to delete it.
and removes Hpppt.exe from the startup list of
Now, delete the following Registry keys. To programs. Click Apply and OK and restart
box, select your C: drive in the Look In dropdown menu, and click Search. If Search finds delete a key, locate it, right-click, and click your computer.
20 • PC Errors
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Error Message: “Hard disk drive
failure”
Translation: This one is self-explanatory:
WinXP is reporting a problem with your hard
drive.
Solution: This is a hardware problem, so
the solution is to determine whether your hard
drive is permanently damaged or whether the
hard drive information in your system’s BIOS
is incorrect. The first step is to reboot the computer, enter your computer’s BIOS Setup program, and verify the settings for your hard
Most Hilarious
Error Message
e searched and searched and
finally found what we think is the
most hilarious Windows error message
we’ve seen. Of course, you might not
find this so funny if it’s happening to you.
The message is:
“Windows could not start because of
an error in the software”
Really? And all this time we thought
Windows crashed just to spite us. The
guy in charge of error messages must
have been in a hurry to get home the
day this one got written because it’s
painfully obvious that very little thought
went into crafting this pearl of wisdom.
But seriously, this error occurs when
Windows XP or Windows 2000 program
files are missing or corrupted. To correct
the error, you must perform an in-place
upgrade using your WinXP installation CD.
To perform an in-place upgrade, boot
your computer from your WinXP installation CD. At the Welcome To Setup
screen, press ENTER to enter the WinXP
Setup program. On the next screen,
press F8 to accept the Windows licensing agreement. In the next screen, you
should only see one WinXP installation
listed; to repair it, press r. The process
starts automatically, so follow the instructions to complete it and perform the
required in-place upgrade. All this does is
reinstall a fresh copy of Windows over
your existing (and malfunctioning) copy.
Microsoft’s error message might not tell
you what specific software error is causing the problem, but this shotgun
approach is designed to cure it. ■
W
drive. If everything looks OK in the BIOS, you
may have a damaged hard drive. In this case,
we hope that you have backed up your data
because most likely the data on the damaged
drive may be very difficult, if not impossible,
to recover.
Error Message: “Fatal System Error:
0x000000a0 (0x00000002, 0x00000000,
0x00000000)”
Translation: This one is fairly straightforward: WinXP reports a serious crash along
with a memory address. The question is,
what exactly is this telling you? Reporting
a hexadecimal memory address without
further detail is no help at all in deciphering
this message.
Solution: According to Microsoft, this error
occurs if you have a Microsoft Sidewinder
Gamepad Pro USB device, and you unplug it
during the boot process. The solution? Simple,
really. Don’t unplug your Gamepad Pro during startup.
Error Message: “Windows could not
start because the following file is missing or corrupt: \Windows\System32\
Drivers\Isapnp.sys”
Translation: This is another one of those
messages that points directly to the culprit.
ISAPNP.SYS is a device driver WinXP needs to
function properly. The message is telling you
this file is either missing or damaged.
Most WinXP files with a *.SYS extension are
Windows device drivers that reside in the
C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS folder.
This folder is one of the most important in
your entire hard drive. If any of these files go
AWOL or are damaged, WinXP will report
serious errors and you won’t be able to get
your system started until you restore a functional device driver.
Solution: Start the Recovery Console (we’ve
already discussed how to start the WinXP
Recovery Console). If the ISAPNP.SYS file is still
in your C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS
folder, the driver is corrupt. Rename the existing
file and copy a new version from your WinXP
installation CD. If the file is missing, then all you
need to do is copy the file from your WinXP CD
to the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRIVERS
folder by typing the expand command: expand
[CD drive letter]:\i386\isapnp.sy_ C:\win
dows\system32\drivers\isapnp.sys.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000009F DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE”
Translation: This error can occur when
you’re starting up the computer from a standby or hibernation state or when you attempt to
shut down your computer. The message is
telling you that a device driver in your system—it doesn’t specify which one—is not
behaving properly when WinXP changes
power states.
Solution: According to Microsoft, you
must find out if any device drivers in your
system are not digitally signed by Microsoft.
WinXP’s developers knew that a huge reason
for Windows problems in previous versions
was the use of device drivers that did not
work well with Windows, especially with its
power-management features. Many times,
hardware and software developers did not
take the time to properly test their device drivers, resulting in incompatibility problems
with Windows.
Microsoft’s solution was to digitally sign
device drivers that were tested and verified to
work well with Windows. Obviously, not
every developer is going to have its driver tested. So, many third-party hardware devices and
applications have unsigned device drivers.
These unsigned drivers may be the root cause
of the specific problem described here.
To find out which device drivers in your
system are not digitally signed, run a tool
called sigverif.exe (File Signature Verification
utility) by clicking Start and Run and typing
sigverif.exe in the Open textbox. Click OK to
launch sigverif.exe. At the sigverif startup window, click the Advanced button and click the
Look For Other Files That Are Not Digitally
Signed checkbox. Now, click the Browse button, go to the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\DRI
VERS folder, and click OK. Click OK again to
return to the initial screen and click Start to
begin the search. The tool’s output is a list of
device drivers that are not digitally signed.
Now, the task is to disable each driver one
by one to verify whether it is the root cause of
the problem. There are three ways to disable a
driver. First, right-click My Computer, click
the Hardware tab, and click the Device
Manager button. Scroll down the list until you
encounter the hardware device that the driver
controls. Right-click the device’s entry in the
list and click Disable. Click OK to accept your
changes.
Second, if the driver in question is associated with a software application, remove the
program. Do this by going to Control Panel
and using Add/Remove Programs to uninstall
the application.
PC Errors • 21
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Hal.dll
This is another one of those messages reporting that a specific file—
in this case—is missing or damaged.
The third and final way to disable a driver
is to browse to the Drivers folder in C:\
WINDOWS\System32 and simply rename the
device driver file.
Once you disable the driver, try to duplicate
the error by putting your computer into
Hibernate or Standby mode and attempting to
wake the computer from its low-power mode.
If the computer restarts normally, you’ve
isolated the problem; if the error message still
occurs, you’ve got some more wayward-driver
hunting to do.
The Windows Signature Verification utility is
an excellent tool for determining which device
drivers are not digitally signed by Microsoft.
“Windows could not start because the
following file is missing or corrupt.
C:\Windows\\system32\hal.dll.
Please re-install a copy of the above
file.”
Translation: This is another one of those
messages reporting that a specific file—Hal.dll
in this case—is missing or damaged. Hal.dll is
the Windows Hardware Abstrac-tion Layer
DLL, a set of programming tools that shields
Windows from having to know intimate
details about every piece of hardware it controls. So this DLL is critical to Windows’ interaction with device drivers in
your system.
Solution: The solution, unfortunately, is to begin the setup
process all over again. Restart
the computer, select Cancel
Windows XP Setup in Windows
Advanced Options to uninstall
WinXP, and then run Setup
again.
Error Message: “Windows
cannot find openme.exe”
Translation: This one is
straightforward: Windows is
looking for a file called OPENME.EXE that is configured via
the Registry to start automatically.
Solution: OPENME.EXE is
an executable file containing the
W32.DSS Trojan horse virus.
SHUTDOWN ERRORS
The file is typically attached to
an unsolicited email; if you
launch the executable, you infect
Error Message: “Your sysyour computer with this Trojan
tem is low on virtual memohorse, and the program also
ry. Windows is increasing
adds an entry in your Windows
the size of your virtual memRegistry. If your antivirus softory paging file. During this
ware is working properly, it
process memory requested
will remove the virus and the
for some applications may
program from your computer,
be denied.”
Translation: This message is
but, in some cases, it won’t
telling you that an unruly appliremove the reference to the file
cation is hogging inordinate
in your Registry.
To get rid of the Registry entry Check out Microsoft’s HCL (Hardware Compatibility List) catalog to see
amounts of virtual memory.
causing this startup problem, click which of your installed hardware devices or software programs are
Virtual memory is space on your
Start and Run and type regedit at deemed compatible with Windows XP, especially if you are about to
hard drive that Windows rethe Open textbox. In the Registry upgrade to WinXP.
serves as “pseudo-memory.”
editor, navigate to HKEY_LOWhen you’re running low on
CAL_MACHINE\SOFTsystem RAM, Windows swaps
W A R E \ M I C R O S O F T \ W I N D O W S N T part of the string. Restart the computer; the memory usage to a designated region in your
\CURRENTVERSION\Winlogon and click the issue should now be resolved.
hard drive. That is why, especially if your sysWinlogon key to select it. In the Registry editem has the minimal memory requirements to
tor’s right pane, find the name Shell and look at Error Message: When you complete an run WinXP, your hard drive starts to audibly
its Data value. If the Data column contains the upgrade to WinXP from Win98 or thrash when your system memory is used
string “explorer.exe openme.exe,” right-click WinMe and Setup restarts your comput- up and WinXP has to go to virtual memoShell, click Modify, and delete the openme.exe er, you get the following message:
ry. According to Microsoft, this problem
22 • PC Errors
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
occurs when Symantec’s Norton Personal
Firewall is installed and configured to run at
Windows startup.
Solution: According to Microsoft, the solution to this problem is to configure the Norton
Personal Firewall to start from the Startup
folder and not from the Registry. To disable
the application’s Registry startup, click
Start and Run, type msconfig in the Open
textbox, and click OK. This launches the
installed and set up for use at the Welcome
screen but is not functioning properly. And
what, you might ask, is an IME? IME is a program in Windows designed to let you enter
complex, foreign language characters (such as
Far East languages such as Korean or Chinese)
using a standard keyboard.
WinXP already comes with built-in language support for Chinese, Japanese, and
Korean, so you don’t need to download any of the IMEs to
work with one of those
Far East languages in
WinXP. To set up the
various multilanguage
options in WinXP, doubleclick the Regional and
Language Options icon in
Control Panel.
Error Message: Here,
you can’t see the message; instead, you briefly see a blue screen and
then Windows automatically restarts.
If the entry under Computer in Device Manager is Standard PC, your
Translation: The reacomputer is not ACPI-compliant or Windows is not reporting this
son Windows is quickly
information correctly.
restarting when the error
occurs, without giving
aforementioned System Configuration Utility; you enough time to see the error message, is
now click the Startup tab and click the check- that the system is configured to automatically
box to the left of the IAMAPP.EXE entry in the restart when a system error occurs. When a
Startup Item list to uncheck it. Click OK to STOP error occurs, Windows restarts so
accept your changes.
rapidly you have no time to look at the mesTo add IAMAPP.EXE to your Startup folder, sage. This behavior is quite disconcerting
browse to the Startup folder at C:\DOC- because you can’t get the error message
UMENTS AND SETTINGS\ALL USERS\ information you desperately need to trouSTART MENU\PROGRAMS\StartUp. Click bleshoot the problem.
Solution: Before any troubleshooting effort
File in the folder’s window, click New, and click
Shortcut to launch the Create Shortcut window. can begin, you need to configure WinXP so it
At this window, click the Browse button and won’t automatically restart when the error
navigate to C:\PROGRAM FILES\NORTON occurs. Right-click My Computer, click
PERSONAL FIREWALL\Iamapp.exe (if you Properties, and click the Advanced tab. Click
have Norton Internet Security, the path is the Settings button in the Startup and
C:\PROGRAM FILES\NORTON INTERNET Recovery option groups and click the AuSECURITY\Iamapp.exe). Click OK and click tomatically Restart checkbox in the System
Next; type a name for the shortcut and click the Failure option group to clear it. Click OK to
accept your changes.
Finish button to create the shortcut.
WinXP now displays the error message, and
Error Message: “Saving your settings.”
you can troubleshoot the problem.
Translation: This one occurs as WinXP
becomes nonresponsive during a shutdown. Error Message: “STOP: 0x000000D1,
The computer hangs, and you are unable to (0x0000002b, 0x00000002, 0x00000000,
restart it.
0xEEEE1b01) IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR
Solution: The root cause of this one is that _EQUAL Kbdclass.sys” or “STOP:
a Microsoft IME (Input Method Editor) is 0x0000007E (0xc00000005, 0xFC7F1945,
Most Unusual Error
Message
his one is also a tough category
to award; we went outside the
Microsoft Knowledge Base and found
this gem (the message occurs when
you install Laplink Software’s Laplink or
PCSync software):
“_INS0432._MP - Entry Point Not
Found - The procedure entry point
SUnMapLS_IP_EBP_16 could not be
located in the dynamic link library KERNEL32.dll”
Wow! This one is bound to strike fear
in the hearts of even the hardiest PC
veterans. Laplink recommends various
possible remedies for this issue, including updating your video drivers to the latest version, removing temporary files
from your computer and attempting the
installation again, downloading and
installing the latest Microsoft Java Virtual
Machine, and finally, ensuring that all the
latest patches and service packs are
installed.
We realize this one isn’t related to a
startup or shutdown, but we simply
couldn’t pass this one up. ■
T
0xFC9589B0, 0xFC9586Bo) Kbdclass.sysaddress Fc7F1945 base at FC7F1000,
Datestamp 3b7d82f3”
Translation: These two separate errors
are very similar, so we will discuss them
together. As you can see, the device driver
file Kbdclass.sys is triggering an error; the
dense hexadecimal nomenclature you see
here is the memory address affected by the
error.
Solution: The problem occurs with
Logitech equipment, such as a mouse or keyboard, which uses a driver (kbdclass.sys) that’s
incompatible with WinXP. Specifically, the second message is triggered when you are using
version 1.5 or earlier of Logitech’s iTouch software, used with the company’s Cordless
Freedom keyboards. The first message affects
computers using Logitech mice with
Logitech’s Mouseware software versions 9.10
and 9.24.
The solution is simple: Browse to the
Logitech Web site and get the very latest
updates for your device’s software. Go to
PC Errors • 23
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
www.logitech.com for instructions on removing the old software and upgrading to the latest version.
These two error messages illustrate a very
common WinXP problem that you can easily
solve by acting proactively before you upgrade
to WinXP. The first step is to take a look at
Microsoft’s Hardware Compatibility List
(www.microsoft.com/hcl) and check to see if
your hardware is included in the list. This list
is a comprehensive catalog of software and
hardware tested and approved to work with
WinXP. At the very least, you should visit the
manufacturer for every piece of hardware you
own and make sure they have published
device drivers written specifically to achieve
compatibility with WinXP. Doing this prep
work before upgrading is time well spent and
will most likely prevent annoying problems
later on.
Error message: When you attempt to
shut down your computer, WinXP
hangs. After awhile, a dialog box
launches stating: “Msmsgs.exe not
responding” or “ActiveMovie not
responding”
Translation: According to Microsoft, this
doesn’t occur very often and is caused by an
intermittent problem (bug) with Windows
Messenger.
Solution: To resolve this, upgrade to the
very latest WinXP Service Pack.
This simple-to-solve problem illustrates a
tried-and-true principle in Windows computing: Always keep your system up-to-date with
the latest patches, upgrades, and service packs.
This keeps your system secure and prevents
these documented bugs from wreaking havoc
with your computer. With WinXP’s automatic
update feature, it’s very easy to keep your system up-to-date.
To use WinXP’s automatic update feature,
right-click My Computer, click Properties,
and then click the Automatic Updates tab.
You can configure Windows to tell you
before downloading and installing an update
or you can configure it to download updates
automatically and then prompt you before
installing them. The most automatic setting is
You can set up your USB (Universal Serial
Bus) hub’s power management options in the
USB Root Hub Properties dialog box’s Power
Management tab.
the third option: Here, WinXP downloads
and installs the updates automatically without any interference from you. We prefer the
second setting, which lets you review the
details about an update and, if you choose to
do so, postpone the install to a later date.
This is convenient when you’re busy working
and don’t have time to install an update and
restart your computer.
Error Message: When you attempt to
shut down your computer, the system
hangs and displays the following message: “It is now safe to turn off your
computer”
Translation: WinXP is reporting a problem with your computer’s power-management settings. For your computer’s APM
(Advanced Power Management) feature to
work correctly, the computer must support
the ACPI (Advanced Configuration and
Power Interface) standard, and the settings
must be correct in both WinXP and your system BIOS.
Solution: First, verify whether your PC is
ACPI-compliant. To do this, right-click My
Computer, click Properties, click the Hardware tab in the System Properties window,
and click the Device Manager button. Click
the plus sign (+) to the left of the Computer
entry on the list to expand the branch. If the
computer is listed as Advanced Configuration And Power Interface (ACPI) PC,
your computer is ACPI-compliant. If the
computer is listed as Standard PC, then
either your computer is not ACPI-compliant
or WinXP is not reporting your computer’s
ACPI status correctly.
If your computer is ACPI-compliant and
you are experiencing this issue, restart your
computer and verify the power-management
settings in your system BIOS. It’s possible
that this error is caused by a BIOS with incorrectly entered power-management settings.
(NOTE: The BIOS is a critical part of your system; consult with your PC’s manufacturer and
plan your approach very carefully before messing
around in here. A misstep could render your computer unbootable.)
Microsoft advises that if your computer is
not ACPI-compliant, you may be able to
resolve this issue by installing the NT
Apm/Legacy Interface Device. As you did
before, launch the Device Manager. In the
Device Manager window, click View and
click the Show Hidden Devices entry. Click
the plus sign to the left of the Non-Plug And
Play Drivers entry in the devices list;
if Microsoft ACPI Driver is not listed, click
the plus sign to the left of the NT Apm/
Legacy Support entry to expand this branch.
The NT Apm/Legacy Interface Node entry should have a red X next to it indicating
that the driver is disabled. Right-click
the NT Apm/Legacy Interface Node entry and click the Enable Device button.
Click OK to accept the change, exit the
Device Manager, and click OK in the
System Properties window to accept all
your changes.
If you expand the Non-Plug And Play
Drivers’ branch in the Devices list and
Microsoft ACIP Driver is listed, you must disable this driver before installing the NT Apm/
Legacy Interface Device. To disable the ACPI
driver, right-click its entry in the list, click
Disable, exit the Device Manager, click OK in
the System Properties window, and restart
your computer.
These two error messages illustrate a very common WinXP problem that you can easily
solve by acting proactively
24 • PC Errors
before you upgrade to WinXP.
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
The Selective-Suspend feature
allows Windows to turn a device
(a USB mouse or keyboard, for example)
off to conserve power. This is especially useful in
notebook computers,
where conserving battery power is a primary goal.
Most Confusing Error Message
indows error messages are confusing
to begin with, so awarding
the “Most Confusing Error
Message” crown was a difficult task. We selected the
following message because
it requires you to go on a
Windows scavenger hunt
for information. The fun
begins during startup when
Windows displays:
“At least one service or
driver failed during system
startup. Use Event Viewer
to examine the event log
for details.”
What could have been a
clear, straightforward message quickly slides into a
confusing ordeal. It’s logical
to ask why Microsoft can’t
simply report the specific
service or driver that failed.
But, let’s follow Microsoft’s
logic on this one.
The next step is to
launch the Event Viewer
and see what further information is displayed. To
start the Event Viewer,
click Start and Control
Panel and double-click the
Administrative Tools icon
(this is assuming your
Control Panel is in Classic
view). If your Control
W
Panel is in Category View
(Windows XP’s default),
click Performance and
Maintenance and then click
Administrative Tools.
Double-click the Event
Viewer shortcut; in Event
Viewer’s right pane, look for
an Error entry with Event ID
7024. The description for
this event is The
Messenger Service
Terminated With ServiceSpecific Error 2270. Now,
the task is figuring out
exactly what “Error 2270”
is. For this, run a utility
called net helpmsg.
To run net helpmsg, click
Start and Run and type
command in the Open
textbox. At the command
prompt, type net helpmsg
followed by the message
number. In this case, type
net helpmsg 2270 and
press ENTER. The following message is displayed:
“The computer name
could not be added as
a message alias. The
name may already exist
on the network.
EXPLANATION
A software error
occurred.
ACTION
Contact technical
support.”
This is the end of the trail,
and if you’re like everyone
else out there, everything
should now be clear as
mud. Microsoft’s Knowledge
Base advises that this message is triggered when your
computer’s name on a network is not unique. Microsoft’s Messenger service
monitors network messages
and uses a set of aliases
based on data about network computers to determine a message’s intended
recipient. One of the criteria for the aliases is a computer’s name, so if the
computer name is not
unique, Messenger cannot
use the alias and the service fails to start.
To resolve this problem,
rename the computer so its
name is unique. Right-click
My Computer, click Properties, click the Computer
Name tab, and click the
Change button. Type a
unique name and click OK.
Then click OK again to
accept your changes and
restart your computer.
Whew . . . you still
with us? ■
Now you have to add the NT Apm/
Legacy Interface Device support. Go to
Control Panel, double-click the Add
Hardware icon, and click Next to launch the
Add Hardware wizard. The wizard will automatically search your system for recently
added hardware. When the wizard finishes
searching, click the Yes, I Have Already
Connected The Hardware radio button and
click Next. Scroll to the bottom of the
Installed Hardware list, click the Add A New
Hardware Device entry to select it, and click
Next. In the next dialog box, click the Install
The Hardware That I Manually Select From
A List (Advanced) radio button and click
Next. In the Common Hardware Types list
box, find the NT Apm/Legacy Support entry,
click to select it, and click the Next button. In
the next dialog box, click the NT Apm/
Legacy Interface Node entry in the Model list
box (it should be the only one on the list) and
click Next to install the driver. Click the
Finish button to complete the process.
Error Message: No message here, just a
symptom: After connecting a USB
device, your computer hangs when you
try to shut it down.
Solution: The root cause of this problem is
the fact that a USB device is configured for
selective suspend, but the device doesn’t support it. The Selective-Suspend feature allows
Windows to turn a device (a USB mouse or
keyboard, for example) off to conserve power.
This is especially useful in notebook computers, where conserving battery power is a primary goal. But for this feature to work, of
course, the device must support it.
To resolve the problem, right-click My
Computer, click Properties, and then click the
Hardware tab. Click the Device Manager button and scroll down the devices list until
you find the Universal Serial Bus Controllers entry.
Click the plus sign to the left of the entry
to expand it, right-click the USB Root Hub
entry, and click Properties. Click the Power
Management tab on the USB Root Hub
Properties window and click the Allow The
Computer To Turn Off This Device To Save
Power checkbox to clear it.
Click OK to accept your changes and then
exit the Device Manager. RS
by Sixto Ortiz Jr.
PC Errors • 25
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Windows XP
Hardware Errors
Keep Windows & Devices In Sync
indows XP is much more competent
than previous versions of Windows
at dealing with the wide variety of
hardware devices it needs to communicate with.
Even so, there are times when XP hits a stumbling block and calls for help by issuing one of its
cryptic error messages. Understanding the error
message and determining which device is causing the problem is easier than ever, but resolving
the problem can still be a very complex process.
W
the list. If that fixes the problem, get in touch
with the manufacturer of the component or
check for an updated driver on their Web site.
• Upgrade Your System BIOS
Check with the manufacturer of your computer or the manufacturer of your computer’s
motherboard for availability and procedures
for updating the system’s BIOS.
• There is insufficient disk space on the drive
on which you installed Windows.
• There is an outdated or incompatible thirdparty driver (or drivers) installed on your
computer—a faulty video driver, for example.
• There are system BIOS (Basic Input/Output
System) incompatibilities.
Error Message: “STOP: C0000221
Unknown Hard Error” or “STOP:
C0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH”
Translation: These error messages are all
related.
STOP: C0000221 unknown hard error
Path\File_name
-or-
Solution: Depending on which of the conditions exists, use one of these procedures.
• Free Up Hard Drive Space
Make sure the drive you are installing
Windows on has enough free space. You may
need to delete some files or install to a different drive.
• Disable or Remove the Third-Party Driver
If the STOP 0x1E error message lists a driver
by name, disable or remove it by clicking Start,
My Computer, and then Control Panel. Then
double-click System, Hardware, and Device
Manager. From the list, find the item “DVD/CDROM drive and click the plus sign (+) to expand
STOP: 0xC0000221 unknown hard error
C:\Winnt\System32\Ntdll.dll (or another specific file or driver)
-orSTOP: 0xC0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_
CHECKSUM_MISMATCH Path\File_name
You will see one of these if the file named in
the error message is corrupted. Windows
always checks a series of files on startup,
including:
• All driver files.
• All DLLs (dynamic-link libraries), including
User, GDI (Graphics Device Interface), Shell,
Kernel, Ntdll, Crtdll, etc.
STOP ERRORS
Error Message: WinXP Generates a
“STOP: 0xA0” Error Message During
Hibernation
Translation: If you have an IDE (Integrated
Drive Electronics) hard drive, it may time out
during the hibernation process. This is because
the ATAPI driver does not wait long enough for
the primary drive to become available.
Solution: This is resolved in the latest
service pack for WinXP. Go to www.windows
update.com and download any service packs
that are not installed on your computer.
Error Message: “STOP: XxXXXXXXD1”
Translation: When you shut down your
computer that has one or more USB (Universal
Serial Bus) devices attached to it, you may
receive this error message. This problem occurs
because of bugs in the USB driver software.
Solution: This problem has been resolved in
Service Pack 1. Download and install all available service packs for WinXP, available at
www.windowsupdate.com.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000001E
(0x80000003, 0xBFC0304, 0x0000000,
0x0000001) [bugcheck code] ([1] [2] [3] [4]”
Translation: When you run WinXP Setup,
you may receive an error message similar to
this one.
This can show up if you restart your computer during or after the Windows Setup
process, if any of these conditions exist:
26 • PC Errors
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
You may also see this
if you installed the wrong
driver for a particular component.
Solution: To fix this,
either get a new copy of the
corrupted file and copy it
to your system or reinstall
Windows. If you continue to
receive any of these error
messages after you reinstall
Windows, it’s possible you
may have a hardware or network problem.
Type exit, press ENTER, and then restart the
copy D:\i386 XXXXXXXX,
where D: is the drive letter computer. (NOTE: If WinXP still won’t boot, you
for the drive that contains may have to perform an in-place upgrade [also
the WinXP Installation CD- called a repair install]).
ROM.
Type exit, press the Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000009F
ENTER key, and then restart DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE”
Translation: This error appears when
your computer.
A simple numeric error with a
•For a Missing or Dam- drivers don’t handle power state transition
long explanation lets you know
aged User32.dll File
requests properly, usually during shutting
that you aren’t connected to
Use Recovery Console to down, suspending or resuming from Standby
the network.
replace the corrupted or mode, or suspending or resuming from
damaged User32.dll file, hibernation.
then, if needed, perform an in-place upgrade
Solution: To fix this error, update or
(also called a repair install) of WinXP. To do remove the driver that’s causing the problem.
Error Message: A “STOP: 0xc000026C” so, follow these steps:
This error can occur because of a device driver,
or “STOP: 0xc0000221 Unable to Load
Insert the WinXP CD-ROM into the CD- but it can also occur because of a file system
Device Driver”
ROM or DVD-ROM drive and then restart the filter driver such as an antivirus, remote conTranslation: When WinXP starts up, you computer. Select any options that are required trol, or backup program.
to start the computer from the CD-ROM or
To isolate the driver that is causing the
may get one of the following error messages:
error, follow these steps:
STOP: 0xc000026C [Unable to load device DVD-ROM drive if you are prompted to do so.
driver] XXXXXXXX
-orSTOP: 0xc0000221 [Unable to load device
Most Unusual Error Message
driver] XXXXXXXX
Error Message: “THREAD_STUCK_IN_DEVICE_DRIVER”
-orSTOP: 0xc0000221. Bad image check sum,
Translation:
This is a STOP error that pertains
the image user32.dll is possibly corrupted. The
specifically to an NVIDIA video card.
header check sum does not match the computThe actual message is “STOP:
ed check sum.
0x000000EA THREAD_STUCK_
XXXXXXXX is the name of the device driver
IN_DEVICE_DRIVER.” It shows up if
file. This may happen if one of these conditions
you are using the Nv4.sys video driver
exists:
to support the NVIDIA card. Fortun• A device driver file (.sys) is missing or damately, getting an updated driver from
aged.
the NVIDIA site (www.nvidia.com) will extract the string and let your video
• The missing or damaged file is probably the
device work properly. ■
driver file that the error message mentions.
• The User32.dll file may be missing or damaged.
Solution: Use the appropriate fix dependWhen the “Welcome to Setup” screen ap- • Check to see if your computer and all the
ing on the particular problem above:
pears, press R to start Recovery Console. (See
installed devices are listed on the HCL
• For a Missing or Damaged Driver File
the sidebar “Using The Recovery Console.”)
(Hardware Compatibility List) located at
At the command prompt, type the following
www.microsoft.com/hcl.
Use Recovery Console to replace the miss• Check for with the hardware manufacturer
ing or damaged driver file. (See the sidebar command, and then press ENTER:
for updates that may be available for your
cd windows\system32
“Using The Recovery Console.”)
hardware (updates are usually available on
To rename the User32.dll file, type the folAt the command prompt, type the following
the hardware manufacturers’ Web sites).
lowing command, and then press ENTER:
command, and then press ENTER:
• Update any software that uses filter drivers
ren user32.dll user32.bak
cd windows\system32\drivers
such as antivirus, remote control, and backTo expand a new copy of the User32.dll file
Rename the damaged driver file by typing
up software.
the following command, and then press from the WinXP CD-ROM to the System32
folder, type the following command, and then • Remove any noncritical devices and softENTER:
ware and see if the error appears after they
ren XXXXXXXX.sys XXXXXXXX.bak, where press ENTER:
are removed. If the error returns, you’ve
expand D:\i386\user32.dl_ c:\windows\
XXXXXXXX is the name of the damaged driver
found your problem.
system32\user32.dll,where D: is the drive letfile.
To copy the driver from the WinXP CD- ter for the drive that contains the WinXP CD- • Install Windows in a new folder. Add any
drivers or components one at time, and
ROM to the Drivers folder, type the following ROM, and c:\windows is the drive letter and
restart the computer after each addition.
folder where WinXP is installed.
command, and then press ENTER:
PC Errors • 27
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Microsoft has recommended
in the past that caching on IDE drives be turned off on programs with somewhat critical data stored on the drive or
for situations that allow a slight drop in overall speed.
Error Message: “STOP: XxXXXXXXED
UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME”
Translation: When you first restart your
computer during the upgrade to WinXP or
when you start WinXP, you may receive this
error.
(NOTE: If you receive this error message when
you restart the computer for the first time during
an upgrade to WinXP, the original operating system is still functional.)
This can happen if the file system is damaged and cannot be mounted
Solution: If the second parameter
(XXxXXXXXX) of the Stop error is 0xC0000032,
then the file system is damaged. You will
need to restart the computer to the Recovery
Console and then use the chkdsk /r command
to repair the file system. When that’s done,
check the drive to locate the cause of the file
system damage. To use the Recovery Console,
see the sidebar. At the Recovery Console
command prompt, change to the drive where
Windows is installed, type chkdsk /r, and then
press ENTER. At the command prompt, type
exit and then press ENTER. The computer will
restart. If this doesn’t fix the problem, repeat it
and use the fixboot command in step 5 instead
of the chkdsk /r command.
Error Message: “STOP: XxXXXXXXED”
(on OEM installations of WinXP)
Translation: When you use volumes that
use the NTFS (NT file system) on IDE drives
with caching enabled, you may receive this
error message during startup. The normal
recovery process in such a case is to run the
chkdsk /r command from Recovery Console
and then continue. On OEM versions of
WinXP, the Recovery Console may not be
accessible. If this fix has not been included in
the OEM build of WinXP, you may not be able
to enter Recovery Console and run the chkdsk
/r command for recovery. Because of the
write-pattern optimization in IDE drives, the
28 • PC Errors
caching routines sometimes write data out of
order to keep drive write speeds at the fastest
possible level, depending on where data is
located on the drive. This opens a timing window where the NTFS file system could have
critical tables damaged if a write is not finished. Microsoft has recommended in the past
that caching on IDE drives be turned off on
programs with somewhat critical data that is
stored on the drive or for situations that allow
a slight drop in overall speed. Programs with
critical data may need to use SCSI drives,
which have better control of data transactions.
Solution: Install the latest service pack(s)
for WinXP.
(NOTE: If you are not able to log on to the
Recovery Console by pressing R when the boot
screen appears, see error “The Password Is Not
Valid” for details on installing the Recovery
Console.)
DEVICE ERRORS
Error Message: “Windows cannot start
this hardware device because its configuration information (in the Registry) is
incomplete or damaged. (Code 19)”
Translation: When attempting to enable
3D, an MSI G4 4200 Ti-TD video card cannot
see the Display adapter under device manager.
When trying to add new hardware, the card is
listed, but it produces this error when clicked.
Solution: Run WinXP’s repair/reinstall on
top of the installed version. It will rebuild the
Registry. Then, you will have to reinstall any
updates/service packs.
Error Message: “Windows XP does
not discover Visioneer Paperport One
Touch scanner. It is not USB but parallel
only.”
Translation: Visioneer Paperport scanner
with a parallel interface is not recognized by
WinXP.
Using The Recovery
Console
he Recovery Console is a software
tool for restoring various parts of
Windows XP. It is part of the standard
distribution CD; however, if your computer came preloaded with Windows you
may not have the CD. In that case you
will need to contact Microsoft to get a
copy of the Recovery Console files.
Use Recovery Console to replace the
missing or damaged driver file. To do so,
follow these steps:
Insert the WinXP CD-ROM into the
CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive, and then
restart the computer. Select any options
that are required to start the computer
from the CD-ROM or DVD-ROM drive if
you are prompted to do so.
When the “Welcome to Setup” screen
appears, press R to start Recovery
Console.
If your computer is configured for
dual booting or multiple booting, select
the WinXP installation you want to
recover.
When prompted, type the administrator password, and then press ENTER.
NOTE: In WinXP Home Edition, the
administrator password is blank by
default. You will be presented with a
command prompt (essentially a blank
screen). Follow the instructions for the
particular restoration you need to perform. You’ll find the instructions contained in the solution portion of the error
message.
At the command prompt, type the
required command and then press
ENTER. ■
T
Solution: Review Visioneer’s Trade Up
Offer to address this problem at www.
visioneer.com/offer.
(NOTE: This is only a trade-in discount toward
a new scanner, not a fix.)
Error Message: Belkin F5U103
RS232/serial to USB adapter works
intermittently.
Translation: Belkin F5U103 RS232/serial
to USB adapter is not recognized by WinXP
and is not assigned a serial port.
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Solution: Download a current driver
from the Belkin Web site at web.belkin
.com/support.
If it’s necessary to reinstall the drivers,
unplug the F5U103 and go to System hardware
and “Remove” it. Then plug the F5U103 back
in, and when Windows asks for the location of
the driver, point to the folder where the driver
file is. If the installation is successful, the
assigned COM port should show up under
“Ports: Com and LPT” in the hardware list.
Error Message: Can’t get a Matshita CDRW/DVD ujda740 to work on a Dell
Latitude 640c.
Translation: The driver delivered with
the computer doesn’t work with the CDRW/DVD drive properly.
Solution: Panasonic is the manufacturer of
the Matshita drive. A simple driver will fix the
problem; you can download the drivers from
www.panasonic.com/business/office/sup
port/downl_drivers_cdr.asp.
Error Message: Unable to make a gameport-to-USB device work in WinXP.
Translation: The gameproper motherboard drivers
port-to-USB adapter worked
so as to get the built-in IDE
with previous operating sysATA 133 driver installed or
tems but is not recognized
install the correct driver if it
or installable for WinXP.
is an add-on ATA 133 card.
Solution: Microsoft no
See the manufacturer of the
longer supports enhanced
motherboard or ATA card.
gameport drivers/software.
The industry as a whole This pesky message is annoying
Error Message: A
has abandoned gameport and persistent.
modem is installed on
devices. Gameports were
the computer, but the
largely unreliable at getting
network services can’t
data through the sound card to the system. For make an Internet connection with the
this reason, manufacturers now make their modem.
devices USB, which is far more reliable. It is
Translation: WinXP’s Remote Access
necessary to replace the device with a direct applet is not functioning. The modem itself is
USB connection.
working, but the applet doesn’t recognize it.
Solution: Reinstall all WinXP updates,
Error Message: WinXP doesn’t support starting with SP1.
ATA-133 controller and hard drive.
Translation: When installing WinXP on Error Message: After upgrading to
a new system with an ATA 133 controller, WinXP Pro: When attempting to play a
occasionally the drives/controller are not DVD that has a readability problem,
discovered.
WinXP sets the transfer mode to PIO.
Solution: ATA 133 hasn’t been supported
Translation: PIO (Programmed Input/
since Windows 98. You may need to install the Output) is only fast enough for CDs.
Most Common Error Message
TOP” errors contain specific coded information
that identifies the particular problem Windows XP has encountered. They cover a wide range of
problems, but because the messages are in code, you will need
to look up each one in order to
find out what it’s reporting and
how to resolve the problem.
Because there are so many
possible conditions that can trigger a STOP error, they are fairly
common. The best way to
address one when you see it is
to follow the particular Microsoft
troubleshooting guide for the
specific code.
Here are excerpts from the
“HOW TO: Troubleshoot “Stop
0x0000007B” Errors in WinXP.”
You’ll find this guide in the
Microsoft Knowledge Base as
Article 324103. Remember that
code 0x0000007B is only one of
the possible codes.
“S
This step-by-step article
describes how to troubleshoot
“STOP: 0x0000007B” error messages in WinXP. A “STOP:
0x0000007B” error message may
appear on a blue screen when
you start your computer. The error
message includes the following
information: STOP: 0x0000007B
(parameter1, parameter2, parameter3, parameter4) INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE
Setup has encountered a
fatal error that prevents it from
continuing. Setup cannot continue. Power down or reboot your
computer now.
Use the Last Known Good
Configuration feature. This may
resolve the problem if you
recently installed an incompatible device driver for your boot
controller.
Use the Repair option with
WinXP Setup.
Restore a Registry backup.
You may receive a “STOP:
0x0000007B” error message if
your computer is infected with a
boot-sector virus.
You may receive a “STOP:
0x0000007B” error message if a
device driver that your computer’s boot controller requires is
not configured to start during the
startup process or is corrupted
or if information in the WinXP
Registry about which device
drivers load during the startup
process is corrupted.
And, from Article 315239 in
the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
Microsoft Support Policy for
Hardware That Does Not Appear
on the Windows HCL
If the System hive in the
WinXP Registry is corrupted,
WinXP may not be able to load
the miniport device driver that
the boot controller requires.
You may receive a “STOP:
0x0000007B” error message if
there is a resource conflict
between the boot controller and
another controller, or between
SCSI devices, or if drive translation is not being performed or
was changed.
Other potential causes of a
“STOP: 0x0000007B” error message include:
The boot volume is corrupted
and cannot be mounted by
WinXP.
You are installing on a mirrored boot partition that was created by Windows NT 4.0. ■
PC Errors • 29
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
When you save or move documents or during general
file-management activities in WinXP, you may intermittently receive
“Delayed Write Failed” error messages.
Solution: Go to your device Manager.
Remove the CD-R drive by following these
steps: Click Start, My Computer, and then
Control Panel. Then double-click System,
Hardware, and Device Manager. From the
list, find the item DVD/CD-ROM Drive and
click the plus sign to expand the list. Select
the CD-R drive (if there is more than one
item) and right-click it. From the menu that
appears, click Uninstall. Then, find the item
in the Device Manager list named IDE
ATA/ATAPI controllers and click the plus
sign to expand the list. Select Secondary
IDE Channel and right-click it. From the
menu that appears, click Uninstall. Reboot.
This will allow the device to work; however,
the condition indicates you are getting
repeated DMA errors. See info at www
.microsoft.com/whdc/hwdev/tech/storage
/ide-dma.mspx.
Error Message: DVD-R/-RW drive can
read DVDs but nothing else.
Translation: The machine tries to read
from the CDs but fails. It even fails to read its
own product recovery CDs, so it can’t be a
problem with the CDs themselves.
Solution: In Control Panel, start Sounds
and Audio Devices, click the Hardware tab,
and then make sure that the CD/DVD drive is
listed, along with Audio Codecs. If these items
are not listed, use the Add/Remove Hardware
program in Control Panel to reinstall these
drivers. Search Microsoft’s knowledge base for
article #314096, How to Troubleshoot CDROM Drive Problems in WinXP.
Error Message: After downloading critical windows updates to WinXP Pro, the
sound is not working.
Translation: If you have a Sony VAIO PC
and you see this message, it probably means
you have a problem with a Yamaha audio
device driver.
Solution: You need to download the current generic driver from Yamaha or roll back
your system to the original driver you were
30 • PC Errors
using before the download (on a Sony VAIO,
the driver is “yacxgc.sys”). Click Start, My
Computer, and then Control Panel. Then click
System, Hardware, and Device Manager. In
the Device Manager, find the entry for the
sound chip. Click it. From the Driver tab, click
Driver Rollback.
Error Message: “Data is invalid”
Translation: When installing the audio
driver for the VIA Technologies chipset, this
error message appears.
Solution: The error is a known issue for
this PCI card and usually means a Registry
protection problem. To fix it, click Start,
then Run, and then type regedit. Locate the
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CONTROLSET001\ENUM\PCI entry. Go through
all the VEN_XXX entries till you find your
card. Highlight it, click the right mouse
button, and highlight Permissions. Then click
Allow By Full Control, click
OK, and quit regedit. Reboot.
40-pin cable. Contact your UDMA hard-drive
controller manufacturer. If the issue is not
resolved, go to the next step.
Also make sure that the settings in your
BIOS are not configured to force faster UDMA
modes.
NOTE: Change BIOS settings with caution.
Read your computer’s documentation regarding
changing any BIOS settings.
If the issue is not resolved, go to the next
step. Turn off the Enable Write Caching On
The Disk feature:
(NOTE: If you turn off the Enable Write
Caching On The Disk feature, your hard drive performance may decrease.)
• In Windows Explorer, right-click your hard
disk and click Properties.
• Click the Hardware tab.
• Click the hard drive and then click Properties.
• Click the Policies tab.
• Click to clear the Enable
Write Caching On The
Disk checkbox and click
OK twice.
• Repeat these for each
hard disk installed in
your computer.
Error Message: “Delayed Write Failed”
Translation: When you
save or move documents or
during general file-manageError Message: “Video
ment activities in WinXP,
decoder error”
you may intermittently Cached data can be lost if your
Translation: After you
receive “Delayed Write hard drive settings are not correct.
install WinXP on a computFailed” error messages.
This issue may be caused if any of the fol- er that was previously running Windows 2000,
everything works except for ASUS Live. The
lowing conditions exist:
• The Enable Write Caching On The Disk fea- error message above appears.
ture for your hard drive is turned on.
Solution: Find the solution on the ASUS
• Your UDMA (Ultra-Direct Memory Access) (usa.asus.com/download/multimedia/betahard-drive controller is configured in either app.htm) download site. Download the driver
of the following ways:
first and then the beta software. WinXP will
•You are using a 40-wire connector cable to advise you that this version is not XP auconnect the UDMA drive to the controller thorized. Ignore it and you’ll get the correct
instead of the required 80-wire, 40-pin cable. drivers. If that doesn’t resolve the problem,
•Your BIOS settings are configured to force try this:
faster UDMA modes.
• Remove any third-party drivers you have.
Solution: Make sure that your UDMA • Go to www.nvidia.com and download the
hard-drive controller is using an 80-wire,
detonator drivers for WinXP.
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Most Hilarious Error Message
ou almost have to laugh when you get an error message like this. As a Hard error and
also a STOP error, there has to be something very specific going wrong.
At startup, Windows XP runs through each of the driver
files, .dll files, and a series of files that are critical to making
XP work and checks them to see if they’re still in proper
working order. If it finds a problem, you’ll get this message.
If you’re lucky, the file causing the error will be named
in the error message, and you can go right to the Recovery Console and restore the offending file. But of course,
there’s always the possibility that just replacing the damaged file won’t cure the problem. In that case, simply reinstall Windows.
Y
Error Message: “STOP: C0000221 Unknown Hard Error” or “STOP: C0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH”
Translation: These error messages are all related.
STOP: C0000221 unknown hard error
Path\File_name
-orSTOP: 0xC0000221 unknown hard error
C:\Winnt\System32\Ntdll.dll (or another specific file or driver)
-orSTOP: 0xC0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH
Path\File_name
You will see one of these if the file named in the error message is corrupted. Windows
checks a series of files on startup, including:
• All driver files.
• All DLLs (dynamic-link libraries), including User, GDI (Graphics Device Interface), Shell,
Kernel, Ntdll, Crtdll, etc.
You may also see this if you installed the wrong driver for a particular component.
Solution: To fix this, either get a new copy of the corrupted file and copy it to your system or reinstall Windows. If you continue to receive any of these error messages after you
reinstall Windows, you may have a hardware or network problem. ■
• From the same Web site, download the
WDM_1.08.exe file.
• Download the new Asus VCR (asvd200.zip).
• Install everything and reboot.
Error Message: “Floppy Disk is Not
Accessible, Not Formatted, or Not Recognized by Windows”
Translation: When you access a floppy
disk, you may receive one of the following
error messages:
A:\ is not accessible.
The device is not ready.
-orDisk is not formatted.
The disk in drive A is not formatted.
Do you want to format it now?
-orSTOP: The disk media is not recognized, it
may not be formatted.
The same disk may work correctly with MSDOS or Windows 95 or after you reformat the
disk with Windows 98/Me/NT/2000/XP or
Windows Server 2003.
You’ll see this on disks that don’t contain a
media-descriptor byte in the BPB (BIOS parameter block) of the boot sector. Some older,
preformatted floppy disks were not created
with a media-descriptor byte. Older product
disks may also not have the media-descriptor byte.
The media descriptor indicates the type of
medium currently in a drive. With MS-DOS
and Win95, you do not have to set the mediadescriptor byte. Therefore, this problem does
not occur with older operating systems.
Solution: To resolve this problem, simply
reformat the floppy disk with Win98/Me/
NT/2000/XP or Windows Server 2003. Your
computer should now recognize the floppy.
Error Message: “Error 692: Hardware
Failure in the Modem”
Translation: When you dial a RAS (Remote Access Services) server in WinXP, you
may receive this error message as the modem
starts to initialize.
This can happen if any of the following conditions exists:
• The modem is turned off, unplugged, or
malfunctioning.
• If you have an external modem, the serial
cable is incorrectly wired.
• If you have an external modem, the serial cable
is not connected or has open connections.
• The serial port or multiport adapter on the
RAS server or client is malfunctioning.
• The handshaking options for the modem are
incorrectly configured.
• The modem is unsupported or the chosen
emulation may be incorrect.
• The modem INF files become corrupted or
the modem driver becomes corrupted.
Solution: Check these conditions.
• Reset your modem. Consult the documentation for information about how to reset
the modem.
• If you have an external modem, make sure
that you are using the correct serial cable.
• If you have an external modem, make sure
that the serial cable is connected securely.
• If you are using a pin adapter to connect
your external modem to your serial port,
make sure that the pin adapter is wired
properly for modem communication.
• Test the serial port or multiport adapter,
and replace the adapter if necessary.
• Make sure that the handshaking options for
the modem are configured properly.
• Contact the modem manufacturer to see if
any setup and initialization information is
available for your modem. Also, check the
latest Windows Hardware Compatibility List
to make sure that your modem is supported.
• Use Device Manager to remove the modem.
You can do this in Safe Mode or in normal
mode. Restart the computer in normal
mode. WinXP will redetect the modem and
reinstall the correct drivers.
Error Message: CD or DVD drive is not
recognized as installed.
Translation: After performing a System
Restore, the CD-RW or DVD+RW drives are
no longer recognized on the computer.
Solution: Attach CD/DVD drives to a ribbon cable (different drive controller header on
PC Errors • 31
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
the mother board) that does not connect to the
hard drive.
Error Message: Hard disk may become
corrupted when entering standby or
hibernation.
Translation: If your computer has an
ATAPI hard drive that is larger than 137 gigabytes, you may get one of these problems.
• The computer may restart instead of resuming from hibernation.
• Your hard drive may be corrupted when
your computer enters standby or hibernation.
• Your hard drive may be corrupted when
WinXP writes a memory dump file because
of a Windows error.
Solution: Search Microsoft.com for article
331958 and download the patch shown there.
BOOT ERRORS
Error Message: “System Restore cannot
run until you restart the computer.”
Translation: When you attempt to run
System Restore, this error message may
appear. This can happen if a Wininit.ini file is
present in the Windows directory.
Solution: To fix this, restart the computer. If
the error appears again, search the hard drive
for the presence of the Wininit.ini file, and then
rename it. To do so, follow these steps:
Restart your computer in Safe or DOS Mode.
Click Start. Point to Search. Click For Files
or Folders. In the Named box, type wininit.ini.
In the Look in box, click Local Hard Drives.
Click Find Now, right-click the Wininit.ini
file, click Rename, and then type wininit.xxx.
Click OK. Close the Find Files window, and
then run System Restore again.
If that doesn’t fix the problem, run the following command to repair the damaged portions of your Registry: scanreg /fix
Error Message: “Please Insert a Disk
into Drive A:”
Translation: This message continually
appears when starting the computer, and you
may continue to receive the preceding message
until you insert a disk into the floppy drive or
until you click Cancel. You’ll see this if you
have selected the Restore previous folder windows at logon checkbox in Folder Options,
and you shut down or restart the computer
when the floppy drive is being viewed, but the
drive is empty when the desktop appears.
Solution: To stop this from appearing, exit
the floppy drive in Windows Explorer before
you restart the computer, or disable the
Restore previous folder windows at logon feature. To disable this feature, follow these steps:
Open Windows Explorer.
In the Tools menu, click Options.
On the View tab, click to clear the check
from the the Restore Previous Folder Windows
At Logon checkbox.
Error Message: How do I make sure that
my new installation of WinXP Pro recognizes my dual Pentiums correctly?
Translation: When installing WinXP on a
computer with two processors, how does
WinXP recognize multiple processors?
Solution: Windows requests information
from the computer’s BIOS; as long as the BIOS
of your machine sees them, WinXP should see
them. Check the BIOS of your computer to
determine that the processors are correctly
identified there.
Error Message: After you install a new
hardware device or new software, your
computer may start to restart spontaneously, or you may receive error messages on a blue screen.
Translation: This is usually caused by a
Error Message: “Services.exe - Applica- device driver that doesn’t match the version of
tion Error. The application failed to ini- Windows on which it is installed. Or just a
tialize (0xc0000006).”
poorly written driver.
Translation: When the
Solution: Check thirdcomputer is started, the
party software or drivers.
desktop appears without the
Try removing any thirdicons, and a message box
party software or drivers
appears with the title of
recently installed or dis“Services.exe - Application
abling them so that they do
Error” and the above error.
not load. Then, restart the
After clicking OK, nothing
computer to see whether
appears on the screen and
that cures the problem. If
the Desktop is blank. If the This Hard Error is really describing
that cures it, report the
Services.exe file is renamed some software component that is
problem to the manufacturor removed, the message box either missing or damaged.
er of the software of driver.
doesn’t appear, but the comIf you can’t restart WinXP
puter is still on the Desktop without the icons.
after you install the software or drivers, use
Solution: Services.exe is an Application one of these methods to restore Windows:
used only in Windows NT4/2000/XP for • Try using the Roll Back Driver feature.
starting, stopping, and interacting with sysSearch Microsoft.com for article 283657
tem services. To resolve the issue, reinstall the
HOW TO: Use the Roll Back Driver Feature
operating system.
in WinXP
(NOTE: This is really called an “in-place • Try using the WinXP System Restore feature. Search Microsoft.com for article 306084
upgrade” and should only have the effect of repairHOW TO: Restore the Operating System to
ing the current installation.)
a Previous State in WinXP.
Refer to the link for more details:
support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid • Try using Recovery Console. (See the
“Using The Recovery Console” sidebar.)
=kb;en-us;315341
System Restore, this error message may
appear. This can happen if a Wininit.ini file is present in the
When you attempt to run
Windows directory.
32 • PC Errors
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Most Confusing Error
Message
UH? There’s a problem with my
disk?
Disk-reading problems can show up
almost any time you try to open a file,
start a program from disc, switch discs
while using programs that require multiple discs, or when a program tries to
read data from some particular area on
the disc. There is a wide variety of error
H
messages indicating problems reading
the disc or copying specific files. Here
are some of them, but remember that
the one you get may or may not be similar to one of these.
Best of luck.
• “application name is not a valid win32
application.”
• “A device attached to the system is not
functioning.”
• “A required file kernl32.dll was not found.”
• “Not enough memory to run this application.”
• “Cannot find the file(s) needed to start
this application.”
• “Error Reading From File [Installer
Error 1305]”
• “Unable to find Setup.exe”
• “CDR-101.”
• “Unable to read drive drive letter:”
Insufficient Memory Problems reading
from a disc may also produce the following symptoms:
• The disc label does not appear in
Windows Explorer.
• The contents of the disc will not display in Windows Explorer.
• When you insert the disk in the drive
or read a disc, the computer stops
responding.
• The disc does not eject from the drive.
• Reading from the disc takes an
exceptionally long time. ■
If WinXP will not start, you will need
to create a new Setup Disk by downloading the
appropriate files from the Microsoft site and following the
included instructions.
• Try starting MS-DOS:
If Windows is installed on a partition that
uses the FAT file system, try starting your
computer to MS-DOS and then renaming the
problem software or driver.
Translation: When you attempt to log on
to Recovery Console in WinXP by typing the
correct password for the local Administrator
account, Recovery Console may display the
following error message:
“The password is not valid. Please retype
GENERAL ERRORS
the password.”
Type the Administrator password:
This issue may occur if WinXP was origiError Message: “Error 769”
Translation: Either you specified a desti- nally installed from a Sysprep image or if
nation address that is not valid, or your remote Sysprep 2.0 was run on the computer at one
server is down. This behavior also may occur time. Sysprep.exe makes changes to the way
if the network card in your computer is not that password keys are stored in the Registry;
these changes are not compatible with the
turned on.
Solution: Turn on (enable) the network Recovery Console logon routine.
card and then run the Network Setup Wizard.
Solution: Attempt to install the RecovTo do this, follow these
ery Console by accessteps:
sing the Windows SP
• Click Start and then
CD-ROM from the comclick Control Panel. In
mand prompt and typing
Control Panel, click
winnt32 /cmdcons from
Performance and Mainthe I386 folder on the
tenance, and then click
WinXP CD-ROM.
System. In the System
If WinXP will not start,
Properties dialog box,
you will need to create a
click the Hardware tab,
new Setup Disk by downand then click Device
loading the appropriate
Manager. In Device
files from the Microsoft
Manager, click Netsite and following the
work Adapters. On the
included instructions.
Action menu, click
Boot the computer with
Click Device Manager to access the
the Startup Disk (the
Enable. Quit Device
Network Adapters on your machine.
Recovery Console will be
Manager. Click Start
included in them) and log
and then click Control
Panel. In Control Panel, click Network and into the Recovery Console.
Internet Connections, and then click
You are now able to perform Recovery tasks
Network Connections. In Network Con- as required (see Error Message: STOP:
nections, click Network Setup Wizard under XxXXXXXXED [on OEM installations of
Network Tasks- and then follow the on- WinXP]). RS
screen steps. When you complete the steps
by Scott Koegler
in the wizard, restart your computer.
Error Message: “The Password Is Not
Valid”
PC Errors • 33
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Windows XP
Software-Related
Errors
ous errors can be resolved by following some
specific steps. No conflict occurs randomly just
to spoil your day; they are usually the result of
a program you have installed recently, a new
hardware device you’ve attached to the computer, or some other traceable and logical
cause. The good news is that once an error
occurs, you can fix the problem, and it probably won’t occur again. Every problem, at least
on a computer, has a solution.
Keep Working Despite Problems
Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000077” or
“KERNEL_STACK_INPAGE_ERROR”
Translation: This could be a
boot sector virus or a corrupted
WinXP paging file.
Solution: Reboot your computer. In some cases when Windows starts up and runs the
Autochk program, any bad sectors will be remapped—problem
solved. (Just keep an eye on your
computer, though, to see if
the error message reappears.)
Otherwise, if Autochk does not
fix the problem, your computer
may have defective or poorly
seated RAM modules. If you’re
comfortable opening the computer case, you can reseat the RAM
modules so that they are firmly
snapped into position (ground
yourself properly beforehand).
Also, double-check all the other
PCI (Peripheral Component
Interconnect) and AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port) cards to
make sure they are seated properly. Run a virus-checking program such as Norton Anti-Virus
2004 (www.symantec.com) to
scan for a boot sector virus.
n Windows XP, there’s no
such thing as an elegant
crash. A dialog box appears
suddenly, demanding your attention. A cryptic stop message,
accompanied by a red exclamation point, interrupts your daily
routine. Usually the application
or operating system task you
were performing comes to a
screeching halt.
Thankfully the most common
crashes—the kind that occurs
when you were just trying to
change your video resolution or
copy a file—are not too detrimental. You can sometimes just reboot
or close the dialog box and get
back to work. In other instances a
crash can signal a more serious
problem with the operating system—one that might take hours to
resolve or, worse, a long phone
call to tech support.
Fortunately Microsoft has provided several new diagnostic features in WinXP. One of the most
important: There’s a way to send
bug reports to Redmond, where
technicians can track the issue and
fix any problems that seem to be
rather widespread. WinXP sometimes provides clues about what
went wrong, including an error
code or message that you can use to address the
problem right away. Interestingly many of the
errors in WinXP are brand new problems not
found in previous 16-bit versions of the operating system, such as Windows 98. So, by following the tips and ideas below, you can fix problems in WinXP and restore your computer to
good working order.
I
34 • PC Errors
Most Serious Errors
Serious operating system errors are often
the most frustrating to fix because they often
involve a recurring system conflict. When you
see a blue screen with a vague message about
kernels and page faults, you might be tempted
to just bring the computer back to the shop
and start over. Fortunately even the most seri-
Error Message: “STOP:
0xA0” error message during
hibernation
Translation: This problem
can occur on a notebook if you
use the Standby option (by selecting Start,
Turn Off Computer, and Standby), which puts
the computer to sleep. The CD-ROM driver
conflicting with the hard drive driver usually
causes the error.
Solution: Microsoft fixed this problem with
the WinXP Service Pack 1, available at
www.microsoft.com.
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
However, if you’re not connected to the
Internet and can’t download the service pack
(and the error keeps causing your notebook to
crash), you can just avoid the problem by
adjusting the battery-saving features on your
computer to never hibernate. That way, even if
you pause to answer the phone or fix dinner,
your notebook will never hibernate and crash.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000000A”
error message when you fast switch
between users
Translation: This rare but troublesome
error can occur if your multimedia keyboard
uses the Netropa driver and you have
enabled fast user switching. Typically, when
you log off your computer (using Start and
Log Off), all the programs you are running
will shut down automatically. If you enable
Fast User Switching in the User Accounts
control panel, your programs will remain
active. When you log off, the keyboard driver
will cause a stop error.
Solution: You’ll need to download and
install a new keyboard driver, available at
www.netropa.com/download/mmkbd/down
load.html
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000007B”
or “0x4,0,0,0”
Translation: The boot sector of your computer (the portion of memory that handles
computer start ups) has become corrupted,
causing an error on a blue startup screen.
Solution: Boot sector problems are difficult to troubleshoot because they occur before
WinXP even loads. You won’t be able to just
run a program, edit a WinXP Registry file, or
remove a device driver. The 0x0000007B error
usually includes an error code such as
0x4,0,0,0 that can help a Microsoft tech support engineer troubleshoot the problem.
However, you can perform a few diagnostic
steps on your own.
First, try rebooting a second time to see
whether the stop error reoccurs. Sometimes
WinXP may run the Autochk program and
correct a disk error automatically. Second,
think about whether you have added any new
hardware devices recently, such as a second
hard drive or a SCSI (Small Computer System
Interface) drive. Try removing that drive and
restarting. Third, you can remove your primary hard drive and install it on another computer. Often a boot sector problem can be resolved
by using a different computer because the second computer may be using a more recent
Most Obvious
Error Message
Error Message: “Another copy of this
application is already running”
Translation: The application you are trying to start is already running.
Solution: You can just switch over to
the application you are trying to start
instead. This error can also appear if you
have upgraded from Windows 98 to
Windows XP, which makes it much less
obvious and more difficult to fix. You’ll
need to rename some files and reinstall
some WinXP files, but for most of us, the
error only appears when you don’t notice
that the program is already running. ■
BIOS (Basic Input/Output System; the software that controls the computer startup procedure). As a last resort, you can reformat the
drive to correct a boot sector problem, which
will require that you reload WinXP.
Look For Other Files That Are Not Digitally
Signed . . . and click OK. In the Look In This
Folder field, type C:\Windows\system32\dri
vers (substitute C for the drive letter you use).
Next, on the Logging tab, make sure the Save
The File Signature Verification Results To A
Log File option is checked and then click OK.
Now click Start. Windows will save the
Sigverif.txt file to C:\Windows, so open that
file with Notepad to see a listing of all signed
and unsigned driver listings.
Use the Device Manager to disable unsigned
drivers you find, one by one, until the problem
is fixed. Click Start, Control Panel, and System.
Select the Hardware tab and click Device
Manager. Look for the driver you want to disable. (You may need to use the Show Hidden
Devices option under the View menu.) Rightclick the driver and select Disable. You may be
able to remove the program and any associated drivers by using the Add Or Remove
Programs control panel.
Another trick: You can just look in the
WINNT\SYSTEM32\Drivers folder for any
drivers that may be causing the power management problems and rename the file,
which means WinXP won’t load that driver
after you reboot.
Use the Sigverif.exe program to look for
unsigned drivers that may be causing power
management problems in WinXP.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x9F”
Translation: This error occurs most commonly on notebooks that are frequently
entering standby mode or resuming from Error Message: “STOP: 0xC2” or “STOP:
hibernation. The problem has to do with the 0x000000C2”
power management features on the notebook
Translation: A device driver has caused a
conflicting with a device driver.
WinXP kernel error.
Solution: The quickest solution is to
Solution: A device driver has caused a conremove the driver that is
flict with the kernel in
causing the problem, but
WinXP, which is the heart
finding the guilty party can
of the operating system—
be difficult. Conflicts occur
the most important code
with unsigned drivers that
that is used to run applicaare not officially sanctioned
tions and manage memory.
by Microsoft to work with
A device driver error is like
power management feaa faulty part on an automotures (or with WinXP in
bile: The best way to get
general). You can use the
the operating system runSigverif.exe tool to see
ning again is to remove the
The Sigverif.exe tool will help you
which unsigned drivers
driver. Unlike the “STOP:
find error-causing drivers.
might be causing problems.
0x9F” error in WinXP,
(Before you run this prowhich unsigned drivers can
gram, it’s a good idea to close any open appli- cause, a signed or unsigned driver can cause
cations and make a backup of your most the “STOP: 0xC2” error. The best method for
important data because the computer will resolving this problem is to think about any
enter a diagnostic-scanning mode.)
new programs you have installed recently or
Click Start and Run and type Sigverif.exe. new hardware devices that you have attached
Click the Advanced button. Select the option to and that have installed a driver automatically.
PC Errors • 35
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
This error can occur when you transfer
large files such as photo
and videos over a USB connection to your computer.
Try uninstalling any new programs you’ve
added recently (by using the Add Or Remove
Programs control panel) and unplug any hardware devices. Reboot your computer.
Error Message: “0x000000D1” error
when you turn your computer off
Translation: A USB (Universal Serial Bus)related error related to the OHCI (Open Host
Controller Interface) driver, which controls
USB file size and memory allocations.
Solution: This error can occur when you
transfer large files such as photo and videos over
a USB connection to your computer. WinXP does
not allocate enough resources for the large file
transfers. To prevent this error from occurring,
you’ll need to download the WinXP Service Pack
1 at www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro
/downloads/servicepacks/sp1/default.asp
Error Message: “0xc000026C” or “STOP:
0xc0000221 Unable to Load Device
Driver” error occurs when you start
WinXP
Translation: This error occurs during the
WinXP startup process if a critical system driver is missing or damaged or if the file
User32.dll is missing or damaged.
Solution: WinXP is not too forgiving if you
happen to delete a .SYS file in your WINDOWS\System directory. One missing file and
the operating system will fail during startup.
There’s only one solution: You’ll need to run
the Recovery Console and replace the missing
or damaged file; otherwise, you’ll have to reinstall WinXP altogether. Fortunately the error
message contains the driver file name, so fixing the error is relatively easy.
To run the Recovery Console, first insert the
WinXP disc in your CD-ROM drive and then
reboot. Newer computers typically include a
startup option to boot from the CD; otherwise,
you’ll need to enter your BIOS (usually by
pressing the DELETE key) and change the boot
sequence so that your computer boots from
CD. Save the BIOS, and your computer will
continue the startup process.
When you see the Welcome To Windows
screen, press r to use the Recovery Console. In
the instructions below, drivername is the name
36 • PC Errors
of the file listed in the error message. (After
each command, press ENTER.)
Type in your login information. Then, at the
command prompt, type:
cd windows\system32\drivers
Then, type:
ren drivername.sys drivername.bak
Finally, type:
copy cd-rom:\i386 drivername
The Recovery Console will reboot the computer. If the user32.dll file caused the problem,
Most Annoying
Error Message
Error Message: “System Has Recovered from a Serious Error” message
after every restart
Translation: Windows XP error reporting sometimes gets stuck in memory and
won’t refresh, so the error will appear
each time you restart.
Solution: This is an annoying error message because, even if you fix the problem, WinXP will still prompt you to send
the error to Microsoft after every reboot.
It’s one of those errors that some of us
just live with, even to the point where we
expect to get the error after a reboot and
just click Don’t Send each time. However, you can correct the problem. Click
Start and My Computer, and then rightclick and select Properties. Select the
Advanced tab and click Settings in the
Performance area. In the Virtual Memory
area, click Change. Under Paging File
Size For Selected Drive, click No Paging
File and click set. You’ll see two warnings; just click Yes on both of them and
then select the System Managed Size
option. Close out of all the dialog boxes
and reboot. ■
you need to type these commands into the
Recovery Console instead and then reboot:
cd windows\system32
ren user32.dll user32.bak
expand cd-rom:\i386\user32.dl_ c:\win
dows\system32\user32.dll
If replacing the files still doesn’t work,
you’ll need to do a repair install of WinXP,
which is an option listed at the Welcome
screen when you boot from the CD. Note
that a repair install won’t delete your documents and important files, but you will
lose all your Windows settings, Internet
favorites, and other operating-system-related files.
Error Message: “0x0000008E” error on a
blue screen in WinXP
Translation: This rare (and random) error
can occur when a program references an incorrect memory address, causing your computer
to crash.
Solution: Microsoft has released a hotfix,
which you can install and run to fix the problem. You’ll need to call Microsoft technical
support to obtain the hotfix, however. It’s not
available online (at least, not yet). If you only
see the error occasionally, you might consider
waiting for another service pack release for
WinXP, although living with the error is probably counter-productive. For support options
visit support.microsoft.com.
The good news is that if the tech support
engineer determines that you do need the hotfix, you won’t be charged for the call.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000001e”
Translation: You’re using an older version
of the Aspi32.sys CD-ROM driver.
Solution: You’ll need to download the latest driver from Adaptec (www.adaptec.com).
Go to the site, look for the Support area, and
then click Downloads. Download the latest
version and install the new driver.
Error Message: “WinXP could not start
because the following file is missing
or corrupt: \WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\
CONFIG\SYSTEM”
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Most Common
Error Message
Error Message: “Missing shortcut”
Translation: You have tried to start a
program using a shortcut that is no
longer valid.
Cleaning a specific file from your Registry can help solve Bluetooth errors.
Translation: Your WinXP Registry is corrupted and requires restoration.
Solution: This is one of the most serious
errors you’re likely to encounter in WinXP, and
Most Frustrating
Error Message
Error Message: “Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Shutdown:
Clear virtual memory pagefile.”
Translation: The secpol.msc and
sceregvl.inf localization files are corrupt.
Solution: For anyone who uses foreign
language localizations of WinXP, you
know that errors can occur that are difficult to understand and troubleshoot,
especially if the translations are wrong.
For example, when the French location
files cause security problems and virtual
memory paging file errors, the message
“Arret: Creer un fichier d’ échange de
memoire virtuelle” will appear. If you
know French, you know that the error is
meaningless. Worse, there is no fix for
the error because Microsoft is still
addressing the problem. So: frustrating,
translated incorrectly, and not fixable! ■
the solution involves four specific steps. You’ll
need to copy new files from the WinXP setup
disc, reinstall GUID (globally unique identifier)
files, delete critical system files that are causing
problems, and use the RestorePoint feature in
WinXP. Although the fix may seem complicated, it’s clear and straightforward.
You can access the complete solution at
Microsoft’s Knowledge Base; look up article
number 307545.
However, because you will be replacing system files, there’s always a possibility that your
system could become even more unstable, that
you could replace the wrong file and have to
start over, or that one of your previous
RestorePoint files is also corrupt. If you have a
backup of your most important files and don’t
mind losing your WinXP settings (for example,
Internet Favorites, desktop wallpapers, etc.),
then a faster and easier solution—one that will
eliminate any problems once and for all—is to
reformat your hard drive and reinstall WinXP
from scratch.
Error Message: “RUNDLL Error loading
irprops.cpl” error when you start WinXP
Translation: A Bluetooth Authentication
Agent DLL file is missing or you have uninstalled the Bluetooth Authentication Agent,
but a Bluetooth-related entry still exists in the
WinXP Registry.
Solution: Bluetooth is the short-range wireless standard for connecting handheld devices
and phones to your computer so you can
Solution: This common error occurs
because Windows XP doesn’t automatically change shortcuts if you move a
program file to a new location (for example, if you decide to run a card game
program from the root of your C: drive
instead of the Program Files folder). The
solution: Right-click the shortcut. Click in
the Target field and change the path to
the correct EXE application. As an
option, you can let WinXP attempt to
find the missing application. This can
take some time, so it’s usually easier to
just click the Browse button (in the
Missing Shortcut dialog box) and look in
your Programs Files folder for the correct application. ■
transfer files back and forth. To solve the problem, remove the Bluetooth Authentication
Agent using the Add Or Remove Programs
control panel. Sometimes when you remove
Bluetooth, the Registry entries still attempt to
control authentication between the device and
your computer. To remove the Registry entry,
click Start and Run, type regedit, and click OK.
Look for the following Registry entry:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\CURRENTVERSION\Run.
Right-click BluetoothAuthenticationAgent
and click Delete. Close Registry Editor and
restart your computer.
Use the WinXP Registry program as a last
resort to troubleshooting the most arcane
error messages.
Error Message: “8E STOP” error on a
blue screen
Translation: When you transfer a file to a
USB device, the Usbser.sys driver generates an
error on a blue screen. Usually the file is
shown with the error, although you may just
see the stop error and not the name of the
offending driver.
PC Errors • 37
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Outdated applications such as CD-backup software and programs
designed to run on the previous 16-bit versions of Windows can cause frequent error
messages, usually when they access memory incorrectly.
Solution: You’ll need to call and request a
hotfix for this problem. To contact Microsoft
go to support.microsoft.com.
Most likely, because this is an operating system problem, you won’t be charged for the
tech support call. Another option: Try rebooting, copying the file to your USB device again,
and seeing if the error reoccurs.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000073
(0x00000001, 0xc000017d, 0x00000002,
0xfc96fcc0) CONFIG_LIST_FAILED”
Translation: WinXP is unable to access a
core system file.
Solution: One of the more common stop
errors in WinXP, this problem occurs when
you have run low on either disk space or
system memory (or both). If you are running
low on disk space, reboot your computer
and delete files that you don’t need anymore. You can do a search (Start and Search)
to look for large files that you may have forgotten about, such as game files and large
photos. Under Search, click All Files And
Folders, click the What Size Is It? arrow, and
then select Large (More Than 1 MB). Click
Search and view the list by size by clicking
the Size tab. Look through the largest files
and delete the ones that are taking up unnecessary space.
If system memory ran low and caused the
error, you can usually solve the problem just
by rebooting and running fewer programs at
the same time. Upgrading your RAM is only
important if you tend to multitask several
applications at the same time.
Error Message: “STOP: 0xc0000218
(0xe11a30e8, 0x00000000, 0x000000000,
0x00000000) UNKNOWN_HARD_
ERROR” or “STOP: 0xc0000218 {Registry File Failure} The Registry cannot
load the hive (file).”
Translation: This occurs due to a corrupted Registry, corrupted hard drive, a driver
that is damaged and is attempting to load
into system memory, or if the RAM on your
38 • PC Errors
computer is damaged and causing problems
with the Registry.
Solution: There are several troubleshooting
options available, each one intended to
address one of the four possible causes. You
Most Confusing
Error Message
Error Message: “Load needed DLLs for
Kernel”
Translation: Important Windows XP
program files are missing or damaged.
Solution: This error is confusing for
several reasons. First, many users may
not understand that the kernel is the
main program file in WinXP, the heart of
the operating system. Second, the term
“load needed DLLs” is just ambiguous
enough that you might not know how
serious the error really is. Unfortunately,
this problem cannot be corrected by just
rebuilding the system Registry or restoring files from the WinXP installation CD.
You’ll need to perform an “in-place
install” of the operating system, which
will destroy most of your settings such
as Internet Favorites and all of your
applications. The good news: An inplace install will usually not overwrite
files in your My Documents folder and
will keep other files located in other
directories (as long as they are not
operating-system-related). To perform
an in-place upgrade, you’ll need to boot
from the WinXP CD, which might require
that you enter the BIOS (Basic Input/
Output System) of your computer and
enable the Boot From CD option. Then,
when the install starts up, select the
Install WinXP option and follow the
remaining instructions. ■
should first try rebooting the computer and
see if the Load Last Known Good Configuration option appears. Sometimes, by
using this option, you can load a previous version of the Registry that is not corrupted. The
next step involves using the WinXP Recovery
Console program to rebuild the system
Registry, a complicated process described
online at Microsoft’s Knowledge Base in article number 307654.
The other options are much more drastic:
reformatting your hard drive completely and
reinstalling WinXP and replacing the RAM on
your computer. One of the problems with solving this error is that, if the problem is RAMrelated, you could replace the hard drive and
still experience problems (and vice versa). Our
advice is to consult a computer repair technician or call Microsoft tech support engineers
who can further diagnose the problem and
suggest the best course of action.
Application Errors
Not every program runs perfectly on
WinXP. However, application errors are generally easier to diagnose than an operating
system error. The worst-case scenario is that
you will have to remove the application and
try something that works better in WinXP.
Outdated applications such as CD-backup
software and programs designed to run on
the previous 16-bit versions of Windows can
cause frequent error messages, usually when
they access memory incorrectly. WinXP handles most applications errors gracefully, providing a message and shutting down the
program. WinXP itself usually remains quite
stable after an application error (which was
not true in previous iterations of the operating system). The best rule of thumb is that, if
the program is outdated, you can usually
obtain an updated release by going to the
company Web site and downloading and
then installing the upgrade.
Error Message: “This Application
Requires the Windows Installer to Run”
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Most Hilarious
Error Message
Error Message: “STOP: c0000218
{Registry File Failure} The Registry cannot load the hive (file): \SystemRoot\
System32\Config\SOFTWARE or its log
or alternate”
Translation: You are attempting to
install Windows XP on a corrupted or
outdated hard drive.
Solution: This message may cause a
few chuckles when you consider that
Microsoft uses the word “hive” in reference to the core operating system files.
It’s funny, considering that WinXP can
seem like a beehive of files at times (especially if you start exploring the Registry). It’s hilarious, when you start thinking
about how there may be a few “Star
Trek” fans at Microsoft. In the series, the
Borg “hive” is the central core of the alien
race. And, incidentally, the solution to this
problem is not as earth-shattering as you
might think: If you are attempting to install Windows on a corrupted or outdated
hard drive, it’s an error message that’s
quite helpful. Even if you could install
WinXP, crashes would undoubtedly
occur. Better to just use a new hard
drive or reformat the drive entirely. ■
Translation: The application was loaded
incorrectly on your computer, is located on a
network drive that is not available, or needs to
be reconfigured.
Solution: Usually, the best course of
action is to reinstall the application from the
source CD, making sure that you install to a
local drive. If the application was installed
originally to use a network drive, you’ll need
to make sure you have access to that drive.
Click Start and My Network Places to see
which network drives are available. (In an
office environment, you might call the network administrator to see if a network drive
is not accessible.) In some cases you can
search for the actual program file and double-click the executable file to get the application to run. Click Start and Search and type
the name of the program file (for example, Excel.exe). Then, when you find the
program, double-click on it to see if the program will run.
Error Message: Ole32.dll may cause an
error message in WinXP
Translation: An outdated version of MSN
Messenger has caused a memory leak.
Solution: This error sometimes includes
another message: “Msmsgs.exe has encountered a problem and needs to close. We are
sorry for the inconvenience.” The fix is to visit
messenger.msn.com and download the latest
version of the instant-messaging client.
Error Message: “CD Recording Software Will Cause Windows to Become
Unstable” error when you start Windows
Translation: You are using an outdated
version of Easy CD Creator (www.roxio.com).
Solution: You’ll need to remove the
Registry entries for Easy CD Creator. Contact
Roxio technical support at www.roxio.com
/en/support/index.jhtml. However, you may
be able to resolve the problem by upgrading to
the latest version of Easy Media Creator 7.
Translation: This error appears when you
attempt to install a program designed to run
on older versions of Windows on the new 64bit version of the operating system.
Solution: You won’t be able to install or
run 16-bit applications on the new 64-bit version of WinXP. The solution is to obtain a 32bit or 64-bit version of the program you are
trying to install. In some cases you can obtain a
32-bit installer for the application and then still
run the older application, even in 16-bit mode.
System Maintenance Errors
File and system maintenance errors seem
to fall into two categories: routine errors
with a straightforward solution and more
complex errors that may be a symptom of a
more critical problem. In most cases a system
maintenance error occurs because you have
moved files and folders around so much and
because you have installed so many programs that Windows is having difficulty
keeping track of all the changes and additions. One routine maintenance task that
may help prevent problems: run the Disk
Defragmenter tool. Click Start, All Programs,
Accessories, System Tools, and Disk
Defragmenter. The program will perform a
disk analysis and then suggest whether you
should run defrag. Just follow the advice of
Error Message: Explorer.exe may generate an application error when you close
a folder
Translation: Internet Explorer causes WinXP to freeze
when you open or close folders.
Solution: You may not use
IE for any other task than
browsing the Web, but it’s also
useful for browsing your own
files and folders. Unfortunately
this random error was a problem with the Service Pack 1
release. No error message
appears on-screen; your computer will just stop responding.
The solution is to download a
new file (Duser.dll) for WinXP Use the Disk Defragmenter as a part of your maintainance
that fixes the problem at routine to help stop errors before they start.
www.microsoft.com/down
loads/details.aspx?display
lang=en&FamilyID=49E589AE-2F93-48DC- the program to decide if your disk needs to
A39A-C9D98DADA7A5.
be defragged or not. Run this utility about
Another option: If you have Service Pack 1 once per month, or more often if you are
installed, you can safely browse files by using constantly adding and deleting files, folders,
the My Computer icon on your Desktop.
and programs.
Run the Disk Defragmenter program in
Error Message: “Install.exe is not a valid WinXP to make sure the operating system
win32 application” or “Setup.exe is not doesn’t become clogged trying to manage your
a valid win32 application.”
files and programs.
PC Errors • 39
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Memory errors occur when your computer runs low on disk space,
you open too many applications at once,
or when the RAM in your computer becomes corrupted.
Error Message: Unable to start programs
with an .EXE extension
Translation: A virus has infected your
computer.
Solution: Many of the most destructive
viruses will cause EXE problems. You’ll need
to install and run a virus protection program, such as Symantec’s Norton Anti-Virus
2004 (www.symantec.com). Many of the
most powerful antivirus programs also
include virus-prevention tools that scan
incoming email and can watch for boot sector viruses.
Error Message: “The Target can not
handle this type of document” error
appears when you try to copy a file in
WinXP SP1
Translation: This is an operating system
bug.
Solution: This error occurs when you rightclick a file and use the Send To command to
copy a file that is not housed in the My
Documents folder to some other location, such
as a network drive. The solution is to use the
Send To command from the Desktop. The bug
is also quite innocuous: although you will see
the error, the file actually copies over correctly.
Microsoft will address the bug in the next service pack update.
Error Message: “Delayed Write Failed”
error when you manage files in WinXP
Translation: You have selected the Enable
Write Caching On The Disk option in your
computer’s BIOS or you have used a 40-wire
cable to connect a UDMA (Ultra-Direct
Memory Access) hard drive to your IDE
(Integrated Drive Electronics) controller
instead of an 80-wire, 40-pin cable.
Solution: You should replace the 40-wire
UDMA cable with the 80-wire, 40-pin cable (or
bring the computer to a service shop to perform the replacement). If that doesn’t solve the
problem, you should enter the BIOS (usually
by pressing the DELETE key as the computer
starts up) and disable the write-caching option.
40 • PC Errors
Using the BIOS on your computer incorrectly
can cause new (and harder to diagnose) problems, so you should consult the manual that
came with your computer or call for technical
support before enabling or disabling any other
features. Make sure that if you do use the BIOS
and disable disk caching that you save your
changes in the BIOS.
Error Message: “Bad Command Structure” error message occurs when you
extract files from a compressed folder
Translation: You’ve discovered another
minor bug in WinXP when you try to extract a compressed file but only if you
type in a directory that does not exist on
your computer.
Solution: WinXP has built-in file compression capabilities. This error occurs when you
right-click on a compressed file (with a .ZIP
extension) and decide to extract the file.
WinXP presents a dialog box where you can
type in the directory for the extracted file. If
you type in an invalid destination, you’ll
receive an error that WinXP was unable to create the directory. Microsoft will undoubtedly
address this problem in the next WinXP service pack.
Memory Errors
Memory errors occur when your computer
runs low on disk space, you open too many
applications at once, or when the RAM
in your computer becomes corrupted.
Fortunately most memory problems can be
resolved quite easily, just by freeing more
space on your hard drive, adding a memory
module or two, or closing out of applications. Some memory errors can be resolved
once and for all by just rebooting your computer and waiting for the Autochk program
to run, which fixes common hard drive problems. And if the virtual memory paging file
(which provides more memory when your
RAM runs low) is overloaded, you can usually just reboot or adjust the size of the paging file. Problem solved!
Of course, other memory problems, such as
a corrupted hard drive or corrupted RAM, are
more difficult to diagnose. In those cases you
may need to experiment with a variety of troubleshooting techniques, such as removing
RAM modules one by one until you find the
culprit. In some rare cases, you may need to
reformat the hard drive and start fresh with a
new WinXP installation.
Error Message: The StgCreateDocFile()
function causes an “STG_E_FILEALREADYEXISTS” error in WinXP
Translation: A memory leak has occurred
that’s related to a core operating system file.
Solution: This is a known bug that occurs
when a program uses the StgCreateDocFile
Most Unusual
Error Message
Error Message: “Fatal System Error:
0x000000a0 (0x00000002,0x00070124,
0x00000000,0x00000000)”
Translation: If you happen to own a
Microsoft Sidewinder Game Pad Pro
(not the joystick model), you may experience a unique problem. If you just
happen to be running WinXP (as
opposed to any other operating system) and you decide to unplug the
USB (Universal Serial Bus) cable
while WinXP is starting up, you will
see the fatal system error and a blue
screen, preventing you from accessing
your Desktop.
Solution: Microsoft is working on a fix
for this error, but at press time it is still
unresolved. Fortunately, the workaround
is rather simple. Just make sure you
don’t unplug the Sidewinder cable when
the system is starting. ■
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Most Difficult To Fix
Error Message
Error Message: “Error 1402. Could not
open key.”
Translation: Microsoft Office 2000
causes this error when you try to run the
application suite on Windows XP.
Solution: There is a complicated fix to
this error message, which involves some
detailed editing in the system Registry
(not for the uninitiated). One of the problems with editing the Registry, though, is
that you can do more harm than good if
you enable or disable just one simple
option by mistake. Also, you’ll need to
know how to search for a specific
Registry key (HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE
on Local Machine in this case). More
importantly, beacuse Office 2000 is several versions older than the latest
release, you may experience additional
errors while running Word, Excel, and
other programs—such as unexpected
crashes and a constant reminder to register the software. The best solution is to
call Microsoft tech support and discuss
various options, such upgrading to Office
2003 or updating the Windows Registry
with help from the engineer. ■
core operating system function in WinXP. It’s
actually a code flaw that will cause the memory leak, leading to additional error messages
until the computer becomes unstable and you
have to reboot. The solution is to obtain the
WinXP Service Pack 1, available at www
.microsoft.com.
Error Message: “Your system is low on
virtual memory. Windows is increasing
the size of your virtual memory paging file. During this process memory
requested for some applications may
be denied.”
Translation: You are running too many
applications at the same time, or there is a
conflict with Symantec’s Norton Internet
Security program.
Solution: If you see this large balloon message in the lower-right corner of your screen,
it’s a good idea to reboot the computer to free
system resources. In some cases, you can just
close some applications to free more memory,
although it may just be a matter of time before
the computer starts running too slow. If you
are not running more than just a couple of
applications, WinXP may be conflicting with
Norton’s Personal Firewall program, especially
if you have configured that program to start
automatically by using the Registry as opposed
to using the WinXP Startup Group folder.
For more information about this Symantec
error (including how to configure the Personal
Firewall correctly for WinXP), visit the company’s support site at www.symantec.com
/techsupport and type the following ID:
2000040412261536.
Adjust the paging file size to prevent virtual
memory errors from occurring.
Error Message: “System restart has been
paused: Continue with system restart.
Delete restoration data and proceed to
system boot menu.”
Translation: During hibernation, the computer accessed memory incorrectly.
Solution: This error occurs on notebooks
occasionally after returning from hibernation,
the sleep mode in WinXP. There’s no option
for returning to the Desktop, so you may lose
your work. Use the option to Delete Restoration Data And Proceed To System Boot
Menu, which will cause WinXP to reboot.
Microsoft will fix this problem in a future
WinXP update. For now you can set the power
management features on your notebook to use
standby mode but not hibernate, but only if
the error occurs frequently.
Error Message: “System has recovered
from a serious error DRIVER_IRQL_
NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL”
Translation: You have corrupted RAM
installed, the wrong memory modules
installed for your computer, or the Windows Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000074
paging file is corrupted.
(0x00000003, 0x00000002, 0x80087000)
Solution: This error can occur just after BAD_SYSTEM_CONFIG_INFO” or
you install new RAM chips, so the easiest solu- “The following file is corrupted:
tion is to remove the new RAM (after properly toside.sys”
grounding yourself, either by using a groundTranslation: One of the RAM modules on
ing strap or touching the power supply). If your computer is corrupted or won’t work with
you’re not sure if the RAM
your computer correctly.
modules you installed
Solution: If you rework with your computer,
cently upgraded your
you can visit Microsoft’s
RAM, try removing the
Knowledge Base and look
new chips you installed.
up article number 65416.
(Make sure you have
If you know that the
properly grounded yourRAM should work (for
self, either with a groundexample, if the modules
ing strap or by touching
came with the computer
the power supply.) If you
and have always worked),
are using the RAM that
then you might try incame with your computer,
creasing the paging file
try removing one module
size. First, click Start, go
at a time and rebooting
to My Computer, righteach time to see if the
Windows XP lets you specify how
click, and select Properror reappears. If the
much space Virtual Memory uses.
erties. Click the Advanced
error doesn’t occur, rebutton and, under the
place the RAM module
Performance tab, click Settings. Click the that is causing the error.
Advanced tab and, under the Virtual
(NOTE: The “toside.sys” error only appears if
Memory area, click Change. Click the No you try to boot from the WinXP installation CD
Paging File option and click OK for each as a way to correct the problem. WinXP won’t
open dialog box. Now restart your comput- boot normally or from a CD if a RAM module is
er. Open Properties again for My Computer corrupted.) RS
and go back to the Virtual Memory area.
Click Change and select the System by John Brandon
Managed Size option. Click OK to close each
dialog box again and restart.
PC Errors • 41
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Windows XP
Network & Online
Error Messages
Get Connected & Stay Connected
ired of cryptic error messages that
invade your screen and ruin your day,
often without providing any real advice
on how to prevent their return? We understand. Here are explanations for some of the
more common and/or more frustrating
Windows XP error messages and situations
that occur in WinXP. For more detailed information on these errors, as well as errors and
difficulties that aren’t covered here, visit
support.microsoft.com.
Oh, and if you’re as sick of those annoying
sounds as you are the error messages themselves, here’s a quick and easy fix: Click Start,
Control Panel, and then Sound, Speech, And
Audio Devices. Click Sound, And Audio
Devices, then select the Sounds tab. At the bottom of that panel, under Program Events, you
can assign new, more pleasant sounds (or even
silence) to almost any Windows event imaginable, including those pesky errors. Enjoy.
T
General Networking Errors
Error Message: “An error has occurred
during configuration of home networking on this computer. For more
information, see the home networking
log file.”
Translation: An unknown error has
occurred during WinXP’s attempt to configure
your network automatically.
Solution: The steps attempted by the wizard, along with notations of success or failure
for each step, are contained in a log file called
Hnetwiz.log, found in your SystemRoot,
which is C:\WINDOWS by default. You can
read this file with a text editor such as
Notepad, but the information therein may be
hard to understand. If you’re forced to turn to
Microsoft for tech support, the log file will
help them solve the problem.
42 • PC Errors
Error Message: “Windows cannot find
file ‘XX.’ Check the spelling and try
again, or try searching for the item by
clicking the Start button and then
clicking Search.”
Translation: Straightforward is the translation on this one. Windows can’t find the file
you’ve specified, represented here by XX. It
could be a network error, a mistyped file
location or name, or the file could be missing.
Solution: Verify that your network is
working by browsing to another known file.
If the network is not working, check cabling and
power to any hubs or routers in the path. If the
network is working, verify the file does exist.
Error Message: “An unexpected error
occurred.”
Translation: This message may appear
when opening the properties of a network connection in the Network Connections folder. It’s
possible that Registry settings for the network
connection may be damaged.
Protocol) diagnostic utility included
in Windows. The utility runs in a
command-line interface reminiscent of
the Days of DOS, and we’ve heard
many users express frustration over
the fact that the command-line
window disappears far too quickly to
be of use.
Translation: By default, as soon as a command window-based task finishes, the window closes itself.
This error may indicate a missing file, or it may be a symptom of a nonfunctioning network.
Solution: Click Start, Run, and type regsvr32
%systemroot%\system32\netshell
.dll. Click OK and try again to open the properties for the affected network connection. If it still
doesn’t work, click Start, Run, type regsvr32
%systemroot%\system32\ole32.dll, click OK,
and then restart the computer and try to open
the properties for the network connection.
Error Message: Many network troubleshooting explanations involve the
use of IPCONFIG, an IP (Internet
Solution: To run a command line-based
diagnostic tool, click Start, Run, and type in
the appropriate command; click OK. To prevent the window from closing itself, preface
the command with CMD /K. For example, to
run IPCONFIG, click Start, Run. Type in cmd
/k ipconfig and click OK.
Error Message: “Explorer.exe has
encountered a problem and needs to
close. We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Translation: This error may occur, alongside an Explorer crash, in a multitude of situations. One documented situation is when you
attempt to map a drive letter to a network
share, either on the LAN (local-area network)
or on the Web, if the name of the mapped to
resource is over 300 characters long. A name of
that length is unlikely with a network resource
on the LAN, but it could easily happen when
mapping to a Web-based resource.
Solution: Install the latest WinXP service
pack at www.windowsupdate.com. Click Scan
For Updates and Microsoft will determine
what your machine needs. Click an update
from the list to install it and follow the directions the update presents.
Error Message: “Cannot load Remote
Access Service Connection Manager.”
Translation: Attempting to create a new
network connection or installing a network
adapter may generate this error message.
Certain services that are required for the task
are probably disabled.
Solution: Click Start, Run, type services.msc,
and click OK. In the right viewing pane, find
and double-click the Telephony entry. If the
service is stopped, click Start and change
Startup Type to Automatic. Repeat this process for both the Remote Access Connection
Manager service and the Remote Access Auto
Connection Manager service.
Error Message: Various error messages
reference an error regarding “Remote
Procedure Call” after which the computer
mysteriously shuts down.
Translation: You probably have the
Blaster virus.
Solution: Go to www.microsoft.com
/security/incident/blast.asp and follow the
instructions to remove the virus.
Error Message: “Not enough server
storage is available to process this command.”
Translation: Norton AntiVirus or another
third-party application may have corrupted a
Registry entry on the computer you’re trying
to connect to over a LAN.
Solution: This fix must be implemented on
the computer you’re trying to connect to, for
it’s there that the problem exists, even though
the error message is being displayed on your
local machine. Warning: This solution requires
changes to the Windows Registry. Do not
attempt this if you are unfamiliar with the
Most Common
Error Message
he ubiquitous 404 Error message
has been annoying surfers for a
decade now, with its headache-inducing
“The page cannot be found” declaration.
Be sure you typed in the URL (Uniform
Resource Locator) correctly. Mistyping is
easy, especially on long addresses. And
remember: Internet addresses use forward slashes (/), not backslashes (\). ■
T
field, and click OK. Exit the Registry and
restart the computer.
Error Message: “Error 2229: An internal
error has occurred.”
Translation: A Setup.exe software installation that uses Windows Installer, when run
across a wireless network link, may fail and
generate this error message because the wireless link is dropping data and Windows
Installer is unable to handle the errors in a
manner that allows the installation to continue.
Solution: Go to www.windowsupdate
.com and install Windows XP SP1 (Service
Pack 1).
Internet- & Email-Related Errors
Registry editing process, and do not edit your
Registry without first backing it up. Do not edit
your Registry without first understanding how
to restore the Registry from a backed up version. Treat Registry entries as case sensitive.
Click Start, Run, type regedit, and click OK.
Use the navigation tree in the left pane to
browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CURRENTCONTROLSET\SERVICES\LANMANSERVER\Parameters and
then look in the right pane for an IRPStackSize
entry. If it exists, double-click it.
If the IRPStackSize entry does not exist, create it like this: Right-click in a blank area of the
Error Message: “The page cannot be
displayed. Cannot find server or DNS
error.”
Translation: The first part of this message
is found at the top of an Internet Explorer error
page, the second part at the bottom. There are
two likely causes. First, the server may not
exist. Second, the server may exist, but your
system can’t connect to it because your DNS
(Domain Name System) server can’t translate
the domain name.
Solution: Try refreshing the page, via
either the Refresh button on the IE toolbar or
the F5 function key. If that doesn’t work, check
the URL (Uniform Resource Locator; the
Internet address that you type in) to be sure
you entered it correctly. If you’re certain it’s
right, you may need to change your DNS
server to one that sees more domain names.
The standard DNS servers are government-run
and translate only a portion of the available
domain extensions. Go the Open Root Server
Confederation at support.open-rsc.org/servers
and follow the instructions there. After you’ve
changed your DNS server to one of the more
It’s possible that this error message indicates a corrupt Registry entry; proceed with caution.
right pane, move your cursor to New, and
click DWORD. Remembering that Registry
entries are case sensitive, name the new entry
IRPStackSize. Press ENTER, and then doubleclick the IRPStackSize entry.
Underneath Base, click the radio button to
select Decimal, type 15 in the Value Data
“open” ones, test the change by trying to view
the www.atlantic.ocean Web site.
Error Message: “The page cannot be
found. HTTP 404 - file not found.”
Translation: The first sentence is typically at the top of an IE error page, while the
PC Errors • 43
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
second sentence is usually found at the bottom, following a page of boilerplate text.
Perhaps the most common error message on
the Internet, the 404 error code’s meaning is
straightforward: The file to display that page
cannot be found.
Solution: Check the URL. Common mistakes are using backward slashes (\) when you
should use forward slashes (/) and mistyped
filename extensions. The most common extensions are .HTM and .HTML, but there are
many others, such as .PHP, .CGI, and .ASP. If
you have indeed entered the address correctly
and still get the 404 error even though you can
successfully load other pages, the file probably
doesn’t exist and you will need to contact the
administrator of that site.
Error Message: When viewing Web
pages, you receive error messages denoting a “Runtime Error” and asking if you
wish to debug.
Translation: The problem is in the code for
the Web pages, not your computer, so there is
nothing you can do to correct the actual error.
Error Message: “Unable to establish a
connection with the activation server.
Please check your network settings and
confirm that you are able to connect to
the Internet, then try again.”
Translation: WinXP, as well as many other
Microsoft applications including the Office
family, require activation, either via the
Internet or telephone. If you’re sure that you
have a valid Internet connection, yet you are
receiving the above error message, your system clock may be incorrectly set, which causes
the connection between your computer and
the activation server to fail.
Solution: Double-click the time in your
System Tray at the bottom right corner of
your screen. Set your calendar and clock to the
correct date and time, click OK, and try the
activation again.
Error Message: “Access was denied
because the user name and/or password
was invalid on the domain.”
Translation: This is a common error message when a WinXP attempt to connect to an
Most Confusing Error Message
UH? The “server storage” error cries out for an explanation, especially because it may
appear when the task you’re attempting opening a file, for example has nothing to do
storage in the traditional sense. The most likely culprit is a corrupted Registry entry on the
remote computer. ■
H
You can, however, disable these annoying
error messages.
Solution: From IE, click the Tools menu
and select Internet Options. Click the Advanced tab and check the Disable Script
Debugging entry in the list of options. Now
find and uncheck the entry that says Display A
Notification About Every Script Error. Click
OK. If the error messages persist, close all IE
windows and restart the program.
Another way to slow down the proliferation
of IE crashes and error messages is the practice
of regularly updating both your WinXP and IE
software. You can set your computer to automatically keep itself up-to-date (click Start, Control
Panel, and double-click Automatic Updates), or
you can manually check for updates at any time
by going to www.windowsupdate.com.
44 • PC Errors
ISP fails. Simply put, the ISP computer is stating that your username/password combination, as received, does not qualify for access.
Solution: Remember, ISP logon passwords are virtually always case sensitive,
meaning that “password” and “pAsSwOrD”
and “PASSWORD” are three completely different entries. Be sure you enter the information exactly as provided to you by the ISP,
including username, password, dial-up
access phone number, and associated connection properties. Also be sure your CAPS
LOCK key isn’t engaged.
Error Message: “The computer you are
dialing in to cannot establish a Dial-Up
Networking connection. Check your
password, and then try again.”
Translation: This is not an indication of
a problem on the ISP computer, but rather a
notice that the connection cannot be established between that computer and your
computer using the logon credentials you
provided.
Solution: Verify that you’ve entered your
username and password correctly, including
the proper case. Once verified, you may need
to turn off the Require Secured Password
setting for that dial-up connection. Click
Start, Control Panel, Network And Internet
Connections, and Network Connections.
Click the dial-up connection in question and
click Change Settings Of This Connection
underneath Network Tasks in the top of the
left pane. Click the Security tab and verify
that Typical (Recommended Settings) is
selected. In the Validate My Identity As
Follows section, be sure Allow Unsecured
Password is checked. Click the Options tab
and be sure the Include Windows Logon
Domain box is not selected. Click OK twice to
exit and try the connection again.
Error Message: “The local policy of this
system does not allow you to log in
interactively.”
Translation: VPN (virtual private network) connections, which allow many
employees to access their company computers from remote locations, have become
much more popular over the past couple of
years. When attempting to log in to a remote
machine via a VPN connection, you will
receive this message if the remote machine is
configured to allow logins only from the
physical remote computer itself.
Solution: Ask the administrator of the
remote computer to enable remote login by
editing that computer’s Group Policy. Do
note that many administrators are reluctant
to enable this level of remote access due to
security concerns.
Error Message: “Error 691: Access
denied because username and/or password is invalid on the domain.”
Translation: You are unable to connect to
your ISP because your dial-up connection
settings don’t match the logon settings
required by the ISP.
Solution: Several different steps may be
required in order to remedy this situation, and
before beginning, you should contact the ISP
to verify the correct settings. First, verify that
your username and password are correct,
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
bearing in mind that at least the password is
case sensitive. “PASSWORD” and “Password”
are two different words to the ISP’s computer.
With these credentials verified, click Start,
Control Panel, and double-click Network
Connections. Right-click the connection in
question and then click Properties.
Under the Options tab, be sure the Include
Windows Logon Domain choice is unchecked.
Under the Security tab, be sure the Require
Secured Password setting is set to match the
requirements given to you by your ISP. Click
OK and try the connection again. If it still
doesn’t work, ask your ISP to assign a new
username and create a new dial-up connection
from scratch.
Error Message: “Modem in use by
another application” or “Port already
open.”
Translation: Another application is using
the modem and/or the communication port
needed by the modem, or you have a hardware error.
Solution: Use CTRL-ALT-DELETE to bring
up the Windows Task Manager. The Applications tab will be selected by default, so look
first at the list of running applications to see if
an application is running that is likely to use a
modem. If so, select that application, click End
Task, and try your connection again. If you get
the same error message, perform an End Task
on all running applications. If the error persists, restart your computer. If the error still
persists, restart your computer again and
check the Com Port settings in your computer’s BIOS (Basic Input/Output System). If the
com port that the modem needs is set in the
BIOS to power an external com port, disable
that setting to return use of the com port to
WinXP and your modem.
Error Message: “Windows Media Player
Error C00D10B3 - unable to access the
network.”
Translation: This error occurs when
Windows Media Player attempts, and fails, to
connect to the Internet.
Solution: WARNING: This solution
requires changes to the Registry. Do not
attempt this if you are unfamiliar with the
Registry editing process, and do not edit
your Registry without first backing it up.
Registry entries are case sensitive.
Click Start, Run, type regedit, and click
OK. Using the navigation tree in the left
pane, navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\
SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\MEDIAPLAYER\Preferences and click to highlight the
Preferences folder in the left pane. Now rightclick a blank area of the right pane, select New,
and click DWORD. A new entry will be created in the list in the right pane, and it will be
highlighted, ready for you to name it. Type
ForceOnline and press ENTER. Now doubleclick the ForceOnline entry and type a 1 in the
Value Data field. Click OK, exit the Registry,
and restart your computer.
Error Message: “Error 769: The specific
destination is not reachable.”
Translation: This error may occur when
attempting to connect to the Internet via a
PPPoE (Point-To-Point Protocol over Ethernet)
connection, a connection type often used with
DSL (Digital Subscriber Line) Internet connections, as a result of a disabled network card.
Solution: From the Desktop, right-click My
Computer and choose Properties. Click the
Hardware tab and click the Device Manager
services must be thus configured in order to
use ICS:
Application Layer Gateway Service
Network Connections
Network Location Awareness (NLA)
Plug And Play
Remote Access Auto Connection Manager
Remote Access Connection Manager
Remote Procedure Call (RPC)
Telephony
After verifying and/or configuring Automatic startup for each of these services, close
the Services window and restart the computer
before attempting again to enable ICS.
Error Message: “Windows Media Player
is not configured for the Internet. Before
you can use the Media Guide or Radio
Tuner features, you must be connected
to the Internet. To connect to the
Internet, run the Internet Connection
Wizard and try again.”
Most Hilarious Error Message
his one’s good for a chuckle. Explorer needs to close. Who cares? You need to get
your work done, right? Oh well, at least the Microsoft Error Authors are polite about it.
They’re sorry. ■
T
button. Once the list populates, use the plus
sign (+) beside Network Adapters to expand
that branch of the navigation tree. Find your
network card, which will probably have a yellow exclamation mark beside it. Double-click
the network card and choose Use This Device
(Enable) from the Device Usage drop-down
list. Click OK, close the Device Manager, and
try your PPPoE connection again.
Error Message: “An error occurred
while Internet Connection Sharing was
being enabled. The dependency service
or group failed to start.”
Translation: A service needed by ICS
(Internet Connection Sharing) is not running.
Solution: Click Start, Run, type services.msc, and click OK. To enable a service,
find it in the right pane and double-click its
entry. Be sure its Startup Type is set to
Automatic and click OK. All the following
Translation: Even if you’re already connected to the Internet, Windows Media Player
may not be able to “sense” the connection.
Solution: For Windows Media Player version 9, first try this quick solution. Click the
Tools menu and select Options. Be sure the
Connect To The Internet checkbox is selected.
If that doesn’t solve the problem, or if you’re
using an earlier version of Windows Media
Player, proceed to the next paragraph.
Exit Windows Media Player and run the
Internet Connection Wizard by clicking Start,
Run, and typing inetwiz. Click OK and proceed through the wizard. If your Internet connection is actually already working, be sure to
make choices in the wizard that match your
current settings. After completing the wizard,
restart Windows Media Player.
Error Message: “Internet Explorer has
encountered a problem and needs to
PC Errors • 45
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
close. We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
Translation: IE has crashed.
Solution: Unfortunately, there is no universal cause for IE crashes and, therefore, no
universal solution. One of the most common
causes, however, is a software conflict between IE and third-party IE extensions or
add-ons. Examples are the Google Toolbar
and the Yahoo! Companion Toolbar, as well
as many other convenience-enhancing toolbars. If you’re experiencing frequent IE
crashes, try disabling all third-party toolbars
by clicking IE’s View menu, Toolbars, and
unselecting any that are checked. If this
eliminates most of your IE difficulties, try
re-enabling the third-party toolbars one at
a time until you find the specific one that
causes the frequent crashes to resume.
Error Message: “Msimn.exe has generated errors and will be closed by
Windows. You will need to restart the
program. An error log is being created.”
Translation: Msimn.exe is the executable
program file for Outlook Express, the email
client included with WinXP. The .DBX files
that contain your messages may be marked as
Read Only.
Solution: Be sure Outlook Express is not
running. Click Start and Search. Click All
Files And Folders, and set the Look In field to
include Local Hard Drives. In the Name field,
type *.dbx, and then click Search. When the
search completes, find a file in a folder name
that begins with C:\DOCUMENTS AND
SETTING\XX, substituting your actual username for the XX. Right-click the file and click
Open Containing Folder. Windows Explorer
will open, already navigated to the appropriate folder, which will contain a number
of DBX files.
Right-click the first file in the list and click
Properties. Be sure the Read Only checkbox is
not checked and click OK. Repeat this procedure for each DBX file in the folder. Restart
Outlook Express.
Error Message: “Unable to open your
default e-mail folders. The .DLL file for
the information service could not be
found. MAPI was unable to load the
information service Pstprx.dll. Be sure
the service is correctly installed and configured.”
Translation: This error generally indicates
a problem with a profile (which lets several
46 • PC Errors
Most Unusual Error Message
espite the wording, plenty of people see this error message even though they are in
fact connected to the Internet at that very moment. No use fighting, though: To make it
go away, you may well have to run the Internet Connection Wizard anyway. ■
D
users maintain separate inboxes in the same
copy of Outlook) in Outlook 2002.
Solution: Go to www.officeupdate.com
and obtain the latest service pack for Office XP.
Error Message: “Error 623: The system
could not find the phone book entry for
this connection.”
Translation: VPN connections can use
existing dial-up connections in order to make
the link between your computer and the
Internet, so the VPN can then be established
between your computer and the remote computer. When trying to connect to a VPN
using a VPN connection previously defined
in Network Connections, the connection is
attempting to use a dial-up connection that
has been deleted.
Solution: Click Start, Control Panel, and
then Network And Internet Connections. Click
Network Connections. Be sure that a valid
dial-up connection exists. If not, create one by
clicking Create A New Connection underneath
Network Tasks in the left pane and following
the resulting instructions. Once the valid dialup connection exists, right-click the affected
VPN connection and click Properties. Select
the Dial Another Connection First checkbox
and then choose the valid dial-up connection.
(NOTE: If your VPN connection doesn’t
require a dial-up connection, be sure the Dial
Another Connection First checkbox is unchecked
and click OK.)
Error Message: Using programs or features that require an automatic ondemand connection to the Internet
(automatic Windows Update and the
Help And Support Center are two examples) may fail to work properly, and
may return any of these error messages:
• Internet Connection is Required
• To view this page, you must be connected to
the Internet. To connect to the Internet now,
click Connect.
• Internet Connection Could Not Be
Established
• There was a problem in connecting to the
Internet. To attempt to connect again, click
Try Again.
Translation: The failure-followed-byerror-message scenario described above can
happen even though IE is able to automatically
connect to the Internet as needed when you
have a LAN adapter (network card) and use
dial-up networking. An example would be a
PPPoE connection in which a dial-up connection uses the network card to establish the
Internet connection.
Solution: Click Start, Control Panel, and
then Network And Internet Connections.
Click Network Connections and click Dial-up
Preferences on the Advanced menu. Choose
the Autodial tab and find the checkboxes
underneath Enable Autodial By Location.
Clear all of these checkboxes. Now be sure
the checkboxes for Always Ask Me Before
Autodialing and Disable Autodial While I
Am Logged On are both checked. Click OK.
You will now have to manually connect
to the Internet, via Start, Control Panel, Network And Internet Connections, and Network
Connections. Double-click your Internet connection and follow instructions. Although the convenience of automatic connection upon demand
is lost, other programs and features that need an
Internet connection should now function properly as long as you’re connected to the Internet
before they’re invoked. Microsoft has confirmed
that this is a problem, so hopefully it will be
addressed in future Windows updates.
Error Message: Every time you shut
down WinXP, you are prompted to disconnect from the Internet.
Translation: Your Internet connection is
being shared with other users on the network.
Solution: Click Start, Control Panel,
Network And Internet Connections, and
Network Connections. Right-click your
Windows XP (Home & Pro)
Internet connection and click the Advanced
tab. Uncheck the checkbox for Allow Other
Network Users To Control Or Disable The
Shared Internet Connection. Click OK.
Other network users will still be able to
share your Internet connection when it is
active, but they will not be able to disable or
control it from their computers.
Error Message: Certain Web pages fail to
load, followed by various error messages,
particularly when using shared DSL service that connects via a PPPoE connection.
Translation: Client computers that access a PPPoE DSL connection over a network
may not be configured for optimum broadband performance.
Solution: Dramatic improvement in online
performance can be realized by properly configuring a computer to match the type of Internet
connection in use. Virtually all of these settings
involve making changes to the Registry, a task
that you should never, ever undertake without
first backing up your Registry and having a
thorough understanding of how to restore that
backup should the need arise.
With that firmly in mind, take heart in the
fact that there are now a number of easy-to-use
“tweaker” programs that vastly simplify this
optimization process. One popular such program is DrTCP, available free of charge at
www.dslreports.com/front/drtcp.html.
LAN-Specific Errors
Error Message: “Network path not
found.”
Translation: Assuming your LAN is working, this particular location is not showing up
as a valid path on your network.
Solution: If you’re certain the network
resource exists, the most logical culprit is a
mistyped network address, and slash errors
are the most common. Internet addresses use
forward slashes as directory separators, but
Windows LANs use traditional backward
slashes just as you use when typing a file
path on your own machine. LAN server
names are preceded by two slashes, like this:
\\HomeServer\InkjetPrinter
Error Message: “Server service is not
started.”
Translation: When sharing files, printers, or
other resources from your computer on the network, the software service that allows this kind
of sharing, the server service, must be active.
Solution: Click Start, Run, type services.msc,
and click OK. Find the Server service in the
right-pane list and double-click it. If the
service is stopped, click Start. Set the Startup
Type to Automatic.
is already in use by an existing computer on
the network at IP address YYY.YYY.YYY.YYY.
Solution: Change the network name of
your computer to something unique. Click
Start, My Computer, and then View System
Error Message: “Spooler subsystem app
has encountered a problem and needs to
close.”
Translation: The print spooling system
(which lets multiple users print from the same
printer by queuing print jobs) can generate a
conflict that interrupts the wizard.
Solution: Before launching the wizard,
click Start, Run, type command, and click OK
to launch a command prompt window. At the
prompt, type net stop spooler and press
ENTER. Run the wizard. After the wizard has
completed, go back to the command prompt,
type net start spooler, and press Enter.
Error Message: “The folder you entered
does not appear to be valid. Please
choose another.”
Translation: This error typically occurs
when you use the Add Network Place Wizard,
signaling that the network location you’ve
entered is not valid.
Solution: When adding a location in
WinXP, you must list both ServerName and
ShareName in the wizard’s Location box, not
just the ServerName. The correct convention in
the Location box is \\servername\sharename
instead of the \\servername convention
allowed in earlier versions of Windows.
Error Message: “Could not start print
job.” (Printing to a network printer.)
Translation: Your computer is unable to
establish contact with the print server.
Solution: Be sure the printer is powered on
and online. Then be sure it’s properly installed
by right-clicking it in the Printers window,
clicking Properties, and then clicking Print
Test Page. If the test page does not print, check
all connections. If the test page still does not
print, repeat the printer installation procedure.
Error Message: “Duplicate name exists.
The name ‘XX’ could not be registered on
the Interface with IP address XXX.XXX
.XXX.XXX. The machine with the IP
address YYY.YYY.YYY.YYY did not allow
the name to be claimed by this machine.”
Translation: Each computer on your LAN
must have a unique name. The name you have
given your computer, represented here by XX,
To give your computer a unique name on the
network, go into System Properties.
Information underneath System Tasks. Click
the Computer Name tab, click the Change button, and type a new name.
Error Message: “User has not been
granted requested login type.”
Translation: The computer you’re attempting to access via the network is not configured
to allow a network login.
Solution: On the computer you’re trying to
access, not the client machine where the error
message is being displayed, click Start, Control
Panel, and double-click Administrative Tools.
Now double-click Local Security Policy and
expand Local Policies in the left pane by clicking the plus sign beside that entry. Single-click
to select User Rights Assignment. In the right
pane, double-click Deny Access To This
Computer From The Network. If your username and/or group isn’t listed in this window,
you will not be able to access this computer
from the network, regardless of other settings.
If present, single-click to select your username
and/or group and click Remove. Click OK.
Now double-click Access This Computer
From The Network and be sure your username
or group is listed. If not, click Add User Or
Group, type your username or group name and
click OK twice. Now go back to the client computer and try the logon. If still unsuccessful,
restart the computer and try again. RS
by Jerry Hatchett
PC Errors • 47
Windows 98
Windows 98
Installation Error
Messages
Get Windows Up & Running
lthough Windows XP is the version of choice among today’s
Windows users, we know there
are still a lot of Windows 98 installations taking place, too. In certain
situations Win98 is actually a viable solution
when WinXP is not. For example, there are DOS
applications that have been chugging along for
years, programs that still perform admirably
when called upon. Many of these applications
require a real-mode DOS environment, and
Win98 Second Edition was the last version of
Windows to provide a real-mode DOS prompt.
So, with a hearty salute to the workhorse
known as Win98, here we go.
A
Error Message: “Warning
SU0011 — Setup has detected
a password-protected partition
on your hard disk. To set up
Windows 95 (or Windows 98), you first
need to remove the password protection.
For more information, see SETUP.TXT on
Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: The Windows setup process
cannot run successfully on a password-protected hard drive or partition.
Solution: Disable the password protection,
install Win98, and then re-enable the protection. To disable password protection on newer
file system partition on your hard disk.
Files on this partition will not be available when you use Windows 95 (or
Windows 98). For more information, see
SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or the
Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: Hard drives are divided
into sections called partitions. The most
General Installation
Error Messages
Error Message: “Warning SU0010 —
Setup has detected a Boot Manager partition on your computer. If you set up
Windows, you will not be able to use
Boot Manager. For more information,
quit Setup, and read SETUP.TXT on
Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: If you currently have boot
manager software installed that allows you to
boot into different operating systems, Win98
will probably disable it by making its own
changes to the hard drive’s boot record.
Solution: Be very careful here. Boot record
changes can render a hard drive unable to
boot, and repairing the damage can be difficult. The best solution is to install Win98 onto
a hard drive without a boot manager installed
and then install and configure the boot manager. We also recommend going to the
Microsoft Knowledge Base at support
.microsoft.com and reading article 289283,
concerning multiboot configurations.
48 • PC Errors
Warning SU0010
Warning SU0011
hard drives that provide this security feature,
refer to the hard drive manufacturer’s instructions. For older machines that offer drive or
partition protection at the BIOS (Basic
Input/Output System) level, you will have to
enter the computer’s BIOS configuration utility
and look for security settings that can be
adjusted. On most computers instructions for
entering BIOS setup are displayed on the
screen early in the boot process. Common keys
for entering BIOS setup are DELETE and F2.
Error Message: “Warning SU0012 —
Setup detected an OS/2 or Windows NT
common partitioning configuration is that of
a single partition that uses all available space
on the hard drive, but it is also possible to
create multiple partitions on a single hard
drive. The computer recognizes these partitions and essentially treats each one as if it
were a separate hard drive. Different partitions can contain different file systems, such
as FAT16, FAT32, NTFS (used by Windows
NT/2000/XP), OS/2, and others. Both OS/2
and WinNT use file systems that will not be
recognized or read by Win98.
Solution: Although a FAT32 partition (the
type used by Win98) can certainly exist on a
Windows 98
hard drive alongside partitions that contain
different file systems, Win98 will not be able
to see or access those partitions. If you need
access to the files on those partitions, you
will also need an operating system(s) capable
of accessing those partitions and files.
Error Message: “Warning SU0016 —
Setup has detected OS/2 files on your
computer. If you set up Windows 95 (or
Windows 98), you may not be able to
use OS/2. For more information, quit
Setup and read SETUP.TXT on Setup
Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: The Win98 installation may
make changes to the hard drive’s MBR (Master
Boot Record) that render existing OS/2 installations unable to run.
Solution: Install Win98 first and then
install boot manager software that will allow
you to run multiple operating systems from
the same hard drive.
Error Message: “Error SU0018 — Setup
could not create files on your startup
drive and cannot set up Windows.
There may be too many files in the
root directory of your startup drive. For
more information, see SETUP.TXT on
Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: The “top” directory on a hard
drive, such as the C: directory, is known as the
root directory. Older drives may be formatted
with an older file structure, such as FAT16,
that allows a maximum of 512 files or directories within the root directory. You may be so
close to this limit that Win98 Setup cannot create the files and directories it needs in order to
complete the installation.
Solution: First, it’s simply bad housekeeping to have a large number of files in your
root directory. Consider cleaning up and reorganizing any existing data. Or, if you don’t
need the existing data, you can also reformat
the drive to the newer and more efficient
FAT32 file system.
Running Windows Setup from DOS will
allow you to make decisions about formatting
and partitions. You may have to configure
your computer’s BIOS settings to boot first to
the CD. On most computers instructions for
entering BIOS setup are displayed on the
screen early in the boot process. Common
keys for entering BIOS setup are DELETE and
F2. Once you have configured the computer
to boot to the CD-ROM, restart and follow the
on-screen instructions for Setup.
Error Message: “Warning SU0019 —
Setup has found commands in
your AUTOEXEC.BAT or CONFIG
.SYS files that are not compatible
with Windows.”
Translation: AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS are special startup files that issue
instructions to your computer during the boot
process. Win98 Setup has found such instructions in your startup files that are incompatible
with Win98.
Solution: After obtaining permission
from you, Setup will create backup copies of
your existing AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files and then create new ones that
are compatible with Win98. Do note that
Error Message: “Warning SU0133 —
Setup was unable to determine your system configuration by using full detection. Would you like to try again using
minimal detection?”
Translation: This error, as well as other
error messages related to hardware detection,
or even “freezes” or “hangs” that don’t generate an error message at all, can be caused by a
variety of issues, including excessive size of
certain files, missing files, and hardware that is
not compatible with Win98.
Solution: First, answer Yes to the question
and let Setup try again, with a less aggressive
hardware-probing routine. If this also fails,
proceed to the next paragraph.
Warning SU0016
Warning SU0019
Warning SU0133
if existing software or hardware requires
entries that were in the old startup files,
you may have to make changes to the
new versions after Setup has completed, in
order to render that software or hardware
useable again.
Error Message: “Error SU0129 — Setup
was unable to determine your computer’s hardware configuration. Setup cannot continue and will now close.”
Translation: This error message occurs
primarily during reinstallations of Win98 or
Windows Me, specifically during the phase in
which Setup probes the computer’s hardware
in an attempt to identify it and install the drivers needed for proper operation.
Solution: Run Setup again and, when presented with the option, choose Safe Recovery.
Also, note the discussion about Error Message
SU0133 later in this article, which may contain
information relevant to this issue.
Look in your root directory (C: on most systems) for the presence of a file called
Setuplog.txt. If that file is larger than 64KB,
rename it to Setuplog.bak and run Setup again.
If the file size is less than 64KB, proceed to the
next paragraph.
Restart your computer and immediately
after the POST (Power On Self Test; a startup
routine during which core hardware components are tested for proper operation, and
often listed on-screen), press and hold the
CTRL key. When the Win98 Startup Options
screen appears, choose Safe Mode.
Once Windows loads in Safe Mode, click
Start, Run, and then type msconfig. Click OK.
On the General tab, click Selective Startup and
be sure the following checkboxes are all
unchecked:
• Process Config.sys File
• Process Autoexec.bat File
• Process Winstart.bat File
• Process System.ini File
PC Errors • 49
Windows 98
• Process Win.ini File
• Load Startup Group Items
Click OK and then allow the requested
restart. If Setup finishes, click Start, Run, and
then type msconfig. Click OK. Click to place a
check mark in the Normal Startup checkbox
and then confirm the requested restart. If the
computer operates properly, you’re done. If it
hangs again proceed to the next paragraph.
Run msconfig again, recheck Selective
Startup, and clear all the checkboxes except
one. Restart the computer. If it doesn’t run
properly, you know the problem lies within
the settings of the one checked startup file.
Make a note of which startup file was selected,
uncheck it, check a different one, and then
restart the computer. Continue this cycle until
you locate the startup file causing the problem.
Go to the Microsoft Knowledge Base and
search for articles related to Win98 and that
startup file.
If all the above steps fail to yield a completed setup and smooth operation, you probably
have a hardware incompatibility. Shut down
the computer, power it off, and physically disconnect the power cable from the computer.
Now, disconnect or remove all nonessential
hardware. Reconnect power and restart the
computer. If Setup completes successfully and
smooth operation follows, shut the computer
down, power it off, remove the power cable,
and reconnect or reinstall a single piece of
hardware. Continue this cycle until you find
the offending device. Either replace that device
with a compatible version, or visit the
a drive letter here in an actual error message),
which is a virtual drive that you can use as if it
were a real drive. Clear as mud? Read on.
Solution: Fortunately, hard drive space has
gotten so affordable that there’s rarely a realworld need for a compressed drive.
Nonetheless, if you’re working with an old
system and you don’t want to install a new
hard drive, simply free up some space by
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message:
“Error SU0409
Cannot find the X file.”
Translation:
Golly gee, we just couldn’t help ourselves.
Solution:
It would appear that Mulder and Scully are forever relegated
to rerun status. Sad but true. Give it up. ■
deleting unnecessary files. Note that even
though you may be installing Win98 to the virtual drive, the host drive is where you’ll need
to delete files.
Error Message: “Warning SU0141 —
Setup could not copy files needed for
your startup disk. You can still continue
with Setup without creating the startup
disk. Click OK to continue.”
Translation: Copying startup files to the
floppy disk failed.
Warning SU0141
Microsoft Knowledge Base to see if there is a
solution to the problem.
Error Message: “Warning SU0153 —
Drive X, the host drive for the compressed Y drive, must have at least Z
bytes free to set up Windows. Free some
disk space, and then run Setup again.”
Translation: This computer is using disk
compression to increase available space. The host
drive X (the drive letter for the host drive will be
listed in an actual error message) is the real,
physical hard drive, and it must have enough
space to create the Y drive (again, you would see
50 • PC Errors
computer has the minimum amount of
memory (RAM) required to run
Windows 95 (or Windows 98). Do you
want to continue with Setup?”
Translation: Your computer has less than
16MB of RAM or you have defective RAM.
Solution: Add more RAM or replace defective RAM. The more RAM you have, the
smoother and faster your computer will run.
Solution: Although the quickest solution is
to skip the creation of a startup disk, this is
also the riskiest path. Try changing to a new
diskette, one without any existing data on it.
Be sure the write-protect tab is set to the Write
position by finding the sliding plastic tab and
ensuring that it’s closed. If there’s an open
space around the tab, slide it closed. If the procedure still fails, try cleaning out your floppy
drive with a can of compressed air. If this fails
your floppy drive may need to be replaced.
Error Message: “Warning SU0151 —
Setup could not verify that your
Fortunately the price of RAM has dropped significantly over the past few years.
Error Message: “Warning SU0159 —
The directory X you specified contains a
Windows NT installation. Setup cannot
install Windows in this directory. Please
choose a different directory.”
Translation: The directory you have chosen for the Win98 installation, which will be
listed in the error message instead of the X,
contains an installation of WinNT.
Solution: Choose another directory, and
bear in mind that multiple installations of
Windows on the same hard drive or partition
can cause confusion and difficulty, especially
when the installations are different versions.
We also recommend going to the Microsoft
Knowledge Base and reading article 289283
concerning multiboot configurations.
Error Message: “Warning SU0160 —
The directory X which is needed to
install Windows into already contains a
Windows installation. Please choose a
different installation directory.”
Translation: You’re trying to install on top
of an existing Windows installation.
Solution: Unless you intend to install on top
of an existing installation for repair purposes (in
which case, the versions need to be identical),
choose another directory, and bear in mind that
multiple installations of Windows on the same
Windows 98
hard drive or partition can cause confusion and
difficulty. We also recommend going to the
Microsoft Knowledge Base and reading article
289283 concerning multiboot configurations.
Error Message: “Warning SU0167 —
The specified directory contains a directory named ‘desktop’ that you must
move or rename before Setup can continue. For more information, see
SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or the
Windows CD-ROM.”
Translation: The Desktop directory is a
key component of any Windows installation.
Win98 must create its own Desktop directory
within the installation directory, and cannot do
so if a Desktop directory already exists there.
Solution: Choose another installation
directory, or rename or move the existing
the installation directory, and there is no D:
drive, the installation will fail. Also be sure that
you haven’t specified a drive/directory combination that contains existing directories or files
of the same names that Windows will be creating during the installation. In best practice all
new installations of Windows should point to a
fresh, empty directory, where no possibility of
conflict exists.
Error Message: “Warning SU0344 —
The Windows directory X you have
specified does not currently exist. Please
verify that the path is correct.”
Translation: This is another self-explanatory error message.
Solution: Be sure you typed the path correctly. One common mistake when entering paths
on a local drive is the use of forward slashes (/)
Warning SU0167
Error SU0350
Error SU0515
Desktop directory. Also, note that having multiple installations of Windows on the same
hard drive or partition can lead to confusion
and difficulty. We recommend going to the
Microsoft Knowledge Base and reading article
289283 concerning multiboot configurations.
Error Message: “Warning SU0343 —
Setup could not create X. Make sure you
specified a valid drive letter and directory name. Also make sure the directory
name does not conflict with existing
files on your drive.”
Translation: Setup has tried to create a
needed directory on the installation hard drive
or copy needed files onto the installation hard
drive, and failed.
Solution: Be sure you specify an installation
path that exists. If you specify D:\WINDOWS as
instead of the correct backslash (\) that is always
used when referring to a local drive and path.
Error Message: “Error SU0350 — Setup
was unable to display the Nondisclosure Agreement. Setup will now close.”
Translation: Being low on memory can
generate this error or there may be an actual
problem with your License.txt file.
Solution: Restart the computer and run
Setup again. If it fails again, proceed to the
next paragraph.
Restart the computer. As soon as the computer starts to boot, press and hold the CTRL
key until the Win98 Startup menu appears.
Choose Safe Mode Command Prompt Only
and press ENTER. When the command
prompt appears, type the following line, and
press ENTER:
copy c:\windows\license.txt c:\windows\help
Press y when you are prompted to overwrite the file and then restart the computer.
Error Message: “Error SU0358 — Setup
detected one or more MS-DOS-based
programs running on your computer.
Close your MS-DOS programs, and then
click OK to continue. Or, click Cancel to
quit Setup.”
Translation: Setup cannot run properly
while DOS-based programs are running.
Solution: Shut down any DOS programs
that are running on your computer and then
click OK.
Error Message: “Warning SU0361 — A
Windows registry file was found. If
Windows 95 (or Windows 98) is
installed in another directory, continuing with Setup will disable it. Do you
want to continue?”
Translation: Setup has found what
appears to be an existing Windows installation
in a different directory on the hard drive and
wants you to understand that the new installation is going to disable the old one.
Solution: Multiple installations of Windows
on the same partition can lead to confusion and
difficulty. Consider installing to a different
hard drive, or use a nondestructive partition
manager to create a new partition for the new
installation. We also recommend going to the
Microsoft Knowledge Base and reading article
289283 concerning multiboot configurations.
Error Message: “Warning SU0366 —
This option disables some of the commands in your AUTOEXEC.BAT and
CONFIG.SYS files to ensure that
Windows 95 (or Windows 98) installs
correctly and uses the fastest drivers.”
Translation: AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS are special startup files that issue
instructions to your computer during the boot
process. Setup is warning you that changes are
about to be made to your startup files.
Solution: No action is required. Setup will
make the needed changes to the files, but you
should be aware that existing software or
devices may not function properly after those
changes are made.
Error Message: “Error SU0515 — Setup
was unable to configure your network
PC Errors • 51
Windows 98
components. To continue without network support, click Yes. To quit Setup,
click No.”
Translation: During Win98 installation,
Setup probes your hardware, including network adapters, and attempts to configure your
network automatically. This attempt has failed.
Solution: Click Yes, allow Setup to complete the installation, and then use Win98’s
Network Troubleshooter.
Error Message: “Warning SU0516 —
Setup ran into problems while trying to
set up the following device on your
computer: X
Setup will attempt to install this
device later. If problems persist, run
Setup again and choose Safe Recovery
when prompted. Click OK to continue.”
Translation: During Win98 installation,
Setup probes your hardware and attempts to
install all drivers needed in order for your
hardware to function. This attempt has failed
on one particular hardware device, the name
of which will replace the X in the actual error
message.
Solution: If the device is nonessential, shut
down the computer, disconnect the power
cable, and remove the device. Restart the computer and run Setup again. After completing
Setup, shut down the computer, disconnect the
power cable, and reinstall the device, following manufacturer instructions.
Error Message: “SU5038 — Error in
command line.”
Translation: When it is run from a DOS
command prompt, Setup can be configured to
handle a number of installation tasks automatically, without requiring the user to answer
questions throughout the process. An incorrect
option has been specified.
Solution: To obtain the correct commandline option in DOS, go to the directory where
Setup.exe resides, type setup.exe /?, and press
ENTER.
Error Message: “There is a crosslinked
file on drive X. Please run SCANDISK.EXE from Setup disk 1 or the
Windows CD-ROM to fix the problem.
Setup cannot continue.”
Translation: Setup has encountered a disk
error on the installation hard drive (X) that
must be corrected before Setup can proceed.
Solution: From a DOS command prompt,
type y, substituting the actual drive letter for
52 • PC Errors
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “Warning SU0362
It is not recommended that Setup continue without the proper amount
of disk space free. If you continue, Setup may run out of disk space
and not complete successfully.”
Translation:
Win98 Setup will perform a check to be sure your hard drive is working
properly and has enough free space for the install. And if, by chance,
the hard drive doesn’t have enough free space, Setup may give you
the option to continue the install anyway. Why? We don’t know.
Solution:
If you don’t have enough drive space, abort the installation and create
the needed space. Run Setup again. ■
the CD-ROM drive that contains the Win98
Setup disk, and press Enter. Now type scandisk and press ENTER. Follow on-screen
progress and interact with any user prompts as
needed. Once Scandisk has repaired the drive
error, run Setup again.
You may use an alternate disk repair utility,
such as Norton Disk Doctor, if you prefer. To
run the DOS version of Norton Disk Doctor,
navigate to the directory that contains
NDD.EXE, type ndd, and press ENTER. As
Error Message: “Warning SU0409 —
Windows Setup was unable to update
your system files. This may be caused
by virus detection that is built in to your
computer, or by virus detection software
running on your computer.”
Translation: Antivirus software has
detected Setup’s attempts to modify system
files, has interpreted those attempts as malicious, and has prevented Setup from being
able to carry out the necessary modifications.
There is a crosslinked file on drive X
Warning SU0409
with Scandisk, monitor the on-screen progress
and interact through user prompts as needed
to complete the operation.
Error Message: “A Product Identification Number is required to set up
Windows 95 (or Windows 98).”
Translation: Win98 installation requires
entry of the 25-character product key that
came with the setup disc.
Solution: When requested, enter the 25character product key and press ENTER.
Solution: Before attempting a Win98
installation, whether a fresh installation or
upgrade, disable any antivirus software that
is running. In upgrade situations you should
be able to run the antivirus software from the
existing version of Windows and turn off the
antivirus protection.
Also note, however, that some antivirus packages also run outside the Windows environment. Some run in DOS, checking boot records
during the earliest part of the boot process.
Some are even configured with the computer’s
Windows 98
BIOS setup utility so that they run immediately
after the computer’s POST routine runs.
Before running Setup, locate and disable all
instances of antivirus protection on your computer. After completing the Win98 installation,
be sure to re-enable the protection. You may or
may not be required to get updated versions of
the antivirus software, but we highly recommend the use of good antivirus protection in
this virus-laden era.
system installed, which cannot be
upgraded by this version of Setup.”
Translation: Setup has found an existing
operating system on your computer, but that
operating system is not eligible for the
upgrade you’re trying to install.
Upgrade-Specific Error Messages
Error Message: “Warning SU0164 —
Setup cannot upgrade the version of
Windows in X, because you are running
Windows from a different directory.
Please choose a different directory.”
Translation: You are trying to install a
Win98 upgrade into a different directory, X
(the directory name will be specified in the
actual error message), from the currently
active Win95 installation.
Solution: Change the Win98 upgrade
installation directory to the directory where
the instance of Win95 that is currently active
is installed.
Or, you can run Setup from DOS and specify a directory other than the one in which
the currently active Win95 installation is
Warning SU0168
Solution: Obtain an upgrade disc that is
valid as an upgrade path from your current
operating system. If you believe this to
already be the case, contact Microsoft’s
customer support.
Solution: If the foreign-language version of
Windows is the one you need, obtain a Win98
upgrade disc in that language. If Standard
English is what you want, choose a new, fresh
installation directory.
Error Message: “Warning SU0346 —
Setup cannot upgrade Windows. The
directory X does not contain a valid
Windows installation. Please specify
another directory.”
Translation: Setup will only run from a
Win98 upgrade disc if the computer already
contains an operating system that is eligible
for upgrade to Win98, namely, a valid lowerversion Windows installation. For example,
you can install a Win98 upgrade on a comput-
Error Message: “Error SU0013 — Setup
could not create files on your startup
drive and cannot set up Windows. If you
have HPFS or Windows NT file system,
you must create an MS-DOS boot partition. If you have LANtastic server or
SuperStor compression, disable it
before running Setup. See SETUP.TXT
on Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CDROM.”
Translation: Hard drives are divided into
sections called partitions. The most common
partitioning configuration is that of a single
partition that uses all available space on the
hard drive, but it is also possible to create multiple partitions on a single hard drive. The computer recognizes these partitions and essentially treats each one as if it were a separate hard
drive. Different partitions can contain different
file systems, such as FAT16, FAT32, NTFS
(used by WinNT/2000/XP), OS/2, and others.
Both OS/2 and WinNT use file systems that
will not be recognized or read by Win98. This
error message indicates that the installation
hard drive contains other partition types, but
no FAT32 partition as required by Win98.
Solution: You must create a FAT32 partition on your hard drive. The simplest way is to
boot directly to the Win98 Setup CD-ROM and
let Setup handle creation of the needed partition. You may have to configure your computer’s BIOS settings to boot first to the CD. On
most computers, instructions for entering BIOS
setup are displayed on the screen early in the
boot process. Common keys for entering BIOS
setup are DELETE and F2. RS
Most Frustrating Error Message
Error Message:
“An unknown error has occurred.”
Translation:
We’re good, but we’re not that good.
Solution:
When all else fails, reboot and try again. ■
located. To run Setup from DOS, you may
have to configure your computer’s BIOS settings to boot first to the CD. On most computers instructions for entering BIOS setup
are displayed on the screen early in the boot
process. Common keys for entering BIOS
setup are DELETE and F2. Once you have
configured the computer to boot to the CDROM, restart and follow the on-screen
instructions for Setup.
Error Message: “Warning SU0168 —
Your computer already has an operating
character set. Setup cannot upgrade
this version. Please choose a different
directory.”
Translation: You are most likely attempting to upgrade a foreign-language version
of Windows.
er that contains a valid installation of Win95,
but you cannot install that same disc onto a
computer that contains only an MS-DOS
operating system.
Solution: Obtain an upgrade disc that is
valid as an upgrade path from your current
operating system. If you believe this to
already be the case, contact Microsoft’s
customer support.
Error Message: “Warning SU0139 —
The directory you specified contains a
version of Windows with a different
by Jerry Hatchett
PC Errors • 53
Windows 98
Windows 98
Startup &
Shutdown Errors
Enter & Exit On Your Terms
tarting up and shutting down Windows
98 can be a harrowing experience. Windows attempts to connect to its various
files, devices, and processes at startup and if it
finds problems, generates error messages that
are generally less than self-explanatory. The
same can happen when Windows attempts to
shut down. Here is a collection of the error
messages that can show up at startup and
shutdown, along with their explanations, and
possible solutions.
Fatal Exception Errors
• Click Start and Run, type
sysedit, and then click OK.
On the Window menu,
click System.ini. On the Search
menu, click Find. In the Find box, type
symevnt.386, and then press ENTER. Place a
semicolon at the beginning of the line that
contains “symevnt.386.” On the File menu,
click Save and then click Exit. Restart your
computer. After Setup has finished successfully, you can reinstall the affected Symantec
program. If you still have a problem, contact
Symantec (www.symantec.com).
Error Message: “A fatal exception XX has
occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx”
Translation: You may see this error when
you shut down your computer, start it up, or
even when you start a program. XX indicates
the error number, while xxxx:xxxxxxxx indicates the code segment.
Solution: “Clean boot” your computer (start
your computer with a minimal set of files). If
you’ve worked with Win98 for some length of
time, you’ve undoubtedly seen a fatal exception
error. There can be many causes for this type of
error, but the first step is to narrow the focus by
trying a clean boot of your computer.
Error Message: “Fatal Exception 0D” Using
ATI All-in-Wonder Pro Video Adapter
Translation: After you install one of the
ATI All-In-Wonder Pro video adapter drivers
version 5.0 or later provided by ATI, you
may receive this error message on a blue
screen. This can happen under either of the
following conditions:
• You are using a program written to use features of the Windows 3.x 16-bit video device
drivers that aren’t available in the 32-bit video
device drivers used in Windows 98/Me.
• You are using a program that installs an older
version of a multimedia program.
Error Message: “A Fatal Exception 0E Has
Occurred at 0028:<XXXXXXXX> in VXD
SYMEvent(02)+XXXXXXXX.”
Translation: This behavior can occur if an
older version of a Symantec program (such as
Norton AntiVirus) is installed.
Solution: To resolve this issue, disable the
Symantec Symevnt.386 file by performing the
following steps:
• Use Registry Editor to delete the following
Registry key, if it exists: HKEY_LOCAL_
MACHINE\SYSTEM\CURRENTCON
TROLSET\SERVICES\VXD\SymEvnt.
Solution: Contact ATI Customer Care
(www.ati.com/support) to get the correct
drivers for your video adapter. To work
around this behavior, follow these steps:
Restart your computer in Safe mode. Click
Start and Run, type msconfig, and then click
OK. Click the System.ini tab, double-click the
[boot] branch to expand it, and then rightclick Display.drv=Pnpdrvr.drv. Click Clear,
OK, and then Yes when you are prompted to
restart your computer. Repeat steps 2 and 3.
Click Select and OK, and then click No when
you are prompted to restart your computer.
S
54 • PC Errors
Click Start, point to Settings, and then click
Control Panel. Double-click Display, click the
Settings tab, and then click Advanced. Click
the Adapter tab, Change, Next, and then click
Display A List Of All The Drivers In A Specific
Location, So You Can Select The Driver You
Want. Click Next and then click the ATI All-InWonder Pro dated 5/11/98. Click Next, click
Next, and then click Finish. Click Apply and
Close, and then restart your computer.
Error Message: “A Fatal Exception 0E has
occurred at 0028:C001AEEB”
Translation: When you try to shut down
your Win98-based computer with a Compaq
FX-series monitor, you may receive an error
message like this one.
This can happen because the version of USB
(Universal Serial Bus) support software included
with some FX-series monitors isn’t completely
compatible with Win98.
Solution: Get the most current version of the
USB support software for FX-series monitors
from HP/Compaq (www.hp.com).
Error Message: “A fatal exception 0E has
occurred at 0028:C02A0201 in VXD
IOS(04)+00001FC9”
Translation: When Setup restarts your computer for the last time during Win98 installation,
you could get this error message on a blue
screen. This can happen if Corel CD Creator 2.0
is installed on your computer. Windows isn’t
compatible with the Cdraspi.vxd file installed
by Corel CD Creator 2.0.
Windows 98
Solution: Start Windows in Safe mode
Mode). Click Start, point to Find, and then
click Files Or Folders. In the Named box,
type cdraspi.vxd, and then click Find Now.
In the list of found files, right-click the
Cdraspi.vxd file, and then click Rename.
Type a new name for the Cdraspi.vxd file
(such as Cdraspi.xxx) and then press ENTER.
Restart your computer normally.
Error Message: “Fatal Exception
0E at 0028:c028bac6 in VXD
Vwin32(05)+0000281a dmistart
timed out waiting for INITCOMPLETE message from
c:\programfiles\intel\ldcm\
win32sl.exe -i -r ia error, ..\..\
dmispio.cpp::320 unable to register with service provider.” or
“Microsoft visual C++ runtime
library: runtime error! c:\program
files\intel\ldcm\ci\ia\ciamngr.exe
abnormal program termination.” or
“dmistart caused an IPF in module dmistart
.exe at 015f:00401a0c”
Translation: After upgrading to Win98,
you could receive one or more of these error
messages. You could also receive a series of
“Invalid page fault” error messages in files
with the .AC extension. This can show up if
your computer automatically starts the thirdparty DMI (Desktop Management Interface)
Start utility.
Solution: Contact the manufacturer of the
DMIStart utility to inquire about the availability
of a fix for this issue. To work around this issue,
disable the DMIStart utility. Restart the computer in Safe Mode, click Start, point to
Programs, point to Accessories, point to System
Tools, and then click System Information. On
the Tools menu, click System Configuration
Utility. On the Startup tab, click to clear the
checkbox next to DMIStart. Click OK. When you
are prompted to restart the computer, click Yes.
Error Message: “A Fatal Exception 0E has
occurred at 0028:C00082CD in VxD
VMM(01) +000072CD”
Translation: When you attempt to shut
down or restart your computer, you may get
this error message if you are using a Matrox
video adapter. This issue can show up if you
have an incompatible or early version of a
Matrox video driver installed on your computer.
The VxD in the error message refers to a virtual
device driver (a simulation buffer between
applications and hardware than ensures that the
correct application gets the correct information
from the hardware).
Solution: Download and install the latest
Matrox video driver for your video adapter
from the Matrox Web site (www.matrox.com).
Error Message: “A fatal exception 06 has
occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx. The current
application will be terminated.”
Fatal Exception Error
Translation: If you press CTRL-ALTDELETE twice on a USB keyboard in Windows, you may receive this error message on
a blue screen.
Solution: Don’t do that. Restarting Windows
by pressing CTRL-ALT-DELETE twice causes
Windows to halt most processes and should be
used only when the normal shutdown process is
not possible. Use the Shut Down command on
the Start menu to restart your computer.
Error Message: Win98 Shutdown
Generates “Fatal 0E” Error Messages with
Alps Electric USB Server
Translation: On Compaq computers with
Alps Electric USB Server, you may receive a
“Fatal 0E” error message when you shut down
the computer. Win98 supports USB, and the
Alps server isn’t required, but Windows doesn’t
disable this program during installation.
Solution: Contact Compaq for information
about an update to correct this behavior. You
can also disable this software. However, doing
this affects your ability to control some features
on the monitor. To disable this software, click
Start, click Run, type msconfig, and then click
OK. In the System Configuration utility, click
the Startup tab, click to clear the Alps Electric
USB Server checkbox, and then click OK. After
you make this change, restart your computer.
Error Message: “Fatal Exception Error
Message in VXD IOS(04). The current
application will be terminated”
Translation: When you start your computer, you may receive this error message on a
blue screen. This issue can occur if the
Sb16.vxd file is located in the C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\Iosubsys folder.
Solution: Rename the Sb16.vxd file in the
C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\Iosubsys folder by
following these steps: Restart your computer
in Safe Mode. Click Start, point to Find, and
then click Files Or Folders. In the
Named box, type sb16.vxd and
click Find Now. In the list of
found files, right-click the Sb16
.vxd file that is located in the
C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\
IOSUBSYS folder, and then click
Rename. Type sb16.old, press
ENTER, and then restart your
computer.
Windows Protection
Errors
Error Message: “While initializing
device XX Windows Protection Error”
Translation: Windows Protection error messages can occur under a number of conditions.
Solution: Start Win98 in Safe Mode. If you
do not receive the error message when you
start your computer in Safe Mode or when you
shut down your computer from Safe Mode,
search the Microsoft Knowledge Base for the
error message code. If you receive the error
message when you attempt to start the computer in Safe Mode, follow the steps listed
below to restore the Registry. Boot the computer from an EBD (Emergency Boot Disk). If you
do not have an EBD, view one of the following
articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base (support.microsoft.com):
• 267287 How to Create a Startup Disk in
Windows
• 187632 How to create a Win98 Startup Disk
Follow the steps in the following articles that
correspond to your Operating System.
• 221512 How to Manually Restore the Win98
Registry
Or, if your computer is a Plug and Play
computer, reinstall Windows by using the
setup /p I command.
Verify that the computer’s CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) settings
are correct. For information about how to
change CMOS settings on your computer,
view the computer’s documentation or contact
the computer manufacturer.
PC Errors • 55
Windows 98
Error Message: “Windows Protection
Error,” or your computer may stop responding (hang) while displaying the
“Windows is Shutting Down” message.
Translation: When you try to shut down a
computer that is running Win98 and the floppy
drive light is on, you may experience one or
more of these symptoms. Your antivirus program is causing the computer to stop responding when you shut down.
Solution: Contact the manufacturer of your
antivirus program to inquire about the availability of a fix for this issue.
To work around this issue, configure your
antivirus program not to scan floppy disk drives
when you shut down your computer.
most cases, a program or component with
drivers designed for use with Win98 will also
be listed in the Add/Remove Programs tool
in Control Panel. Following the instructions
in the first step should correct the problem.
• If the error message still occurs after following the instructions above, or it does not
apply, extract the missing file from the Win98
CD-ROM as follows: Click Start, point to
Programs, point to Accessories, point to
System Tools, and then click System Information. On the Tools menu, click System File
Checker. Click Extract One File From Installation Disk, type the name of the file you
want to extract in the Specify The System File
You Would Like To Restore box, and then
click Start. In the Restore From box, type the
path to the Win98 folder on the Win98 CDROM. Type the destination folder in the Save
File In box if necessary, and then click OK.
([folder] should be the name of the folder you
took note of.) Restart your computer. If this
method doesn’t work, try this: Using a text editor (such as Notepad), edit the Autoexec.bat file
and add or modify the PATH line so that it
includes the C:\WINDOWS\System folder. For
example, add the following line to your
Autoexec.bat file: path=c:\windows\system.
Error Message: “TASKMON caused an
invalid page fault in module KERNEL32.DLL,” or “EXPLORER caused an
invalid page fault in module KERNEL32.DLL.”
Translation: When you attempt to start or
shut down Win98 or start Windows Explorer,
you may receive one of the error messages.
File Missing Or Damaged
This can happen if log files in the C:\WINDOWS\Applog folder are damaged. When you
shut down Win98, the Task Monitor tool
Error Message: “The Windows registry or
attempts to update the log files, and
SYSTEM.INI file refers to this
when it can’t, the error message occurs.
device file, but the device file no
longer exists. A Windows virtual
Solution: Double-click My Comdevice driver (VxD) referenced in
puter on the Desktop. Double-click
the System.ini file or registry is
the drive that contains the Windows
missing or damaged.”
folder. On the View menu, click
Translation: At startup, you may
Folder Options.
receive the error message stating a file
Click the View tab. Under the
is missing. (NOTE: The specific file may
Hidden Files section, click Show All
not be named.)
Files. Click OK.
This error message can occur for
Double-click the Windows folder.
either of the following reasons:
Right-click the Applog folder, click
• One of the StaticVxD values in the Applications as seemingly stable as Windows Explorer can trigger
Rename, type a new name for the
Registry contains invalid data. For an error when shutting down Window 98. The program itself is not
folder (such as Applog2), and then
example, the value is blank or con- the real culprit; you’ll need to look for any error codes that show up
press ENTER. Restart your computer.
tains only spaces. In this case, the in order to hunt down the real problem.
The Applog folder and log files are remissing device driver is not named
created automatically.
Click OK, click OK, and then click Yes when
in the error message.
you are prompted to restart your computer.
Solution: Follow each step below until you
Error Message: “Msgsrv32 Caused a
don’t get the error any longer:
General Protection Fault in User.exe”
• If you have recently removed a program or Error Message: “VMM32.VXD Is ReTranslation: This error message may show
component, reinstall the program or compo- quired to Run Windows. . .”
up when you shut down. This behavior can
nent, and then run the uninstall tool, if one is
Translation: This problem may happen if occur if you have faulty computer hardware or a
available. If no uninstall tool is available for the C:\WINDOWS\System folder is missing damaged driver or program, or if Windows’
the program or component, contact the manu- or renamed, or if the PATH line in the core files are damaged.
facturer to obtain instructions on uninstalling.
Autoexec.bat file is missing or does not include
Solution: To work around this behavior,
• If the missing device driver has a .386 exten- the C:\WINDOWS\System folder.
you must first determine whether it is caused
sion, disable the line referring to this device
Solution: Try this first: At the command by software or hardware. If you restart your
driver in the System.ini file by placing a prompt, type dir vmm32.vxd /s. If the computer in Safe Mode and the error message
semicolon at the beginning of the line. For Vmm32.vxd file is not found, you must install does not occur, the origin is more likely to be a
example, where XX is the file name and the Win98 again. If the Vmm32.vxd file is found, driver or program. If you restart your computline referencing the missing device driver note the folder in which it is located and then er in Safe Mode and the error message does
reads: device=XX.386, change the line to continue with the next step.
occur, the issue is more likely to be hardware
read: ;device=XX.386.
At the command prompt, type the following or damaged Windows core files. Restart your
• If the missing device driver has a .VXD exten- commands; press ENTER after each command:
computer in Safe Mode. Test your computer in
sion, it is a driver designed for use with
cd windows
Safe Mode. If you don’t get the error message,
Win98 and is referenced in the Registry. In
ren [folder] system
use the following steps with the System
56 • PC Errors
Windows 98
Configuration utility to identify which program or driver is causing the error message:
Click Start, point to Programs, point to
Accessories, point to System Tools, and then
click System Information. On the Tools menu,
click System Configuration Utility. On the
General tab, click Selective Startup, and then
click to clear the following checkboxes:
• Process Config.sys File
• Process Autoexec.bat File
• Process Winstart.bat File (if available)
• Process System.ini File
• Process Win.ini File
• Load Startup Group Items
Click OK and restart your computer. After
you restart and test your computer, if you still do
not receive the error message, try the next steps:
• Identify the entry that is causing the error
message.
• Run the System Configuration Utility again.
Click to select one check box under Selective
Startup, click OK, restart your computer, and
then test.
• Continue this process until you have selected
all of the items under Selective Startup.
If you select an item and the issue occurs,
click the tab for the corresponding Selective
Startup item, clear half of the check boxes, click
OK, and then restart your computer. Continue
this process until you locate the setting that is
causing the issue.
If you can restart your computer successfully when all of the items are selected, run
the System Configuration utility, click
Normal Startup, click OK, and then restart
your computer.
Reinstall Windows Errors
Error Message: “Error Loading User.exe.
You Must Reinstall Windows”
Translation: You may get this error if the
Ddeml.dll file is missing or corrupted.
Solution: Start your computer with the
Windows Startup disk. Choose Start Win98
With CD-ROM Support from the Startup menu
and then press ENTER.
Type the following command and then press
ENTER: extract [drive]:\win98\win98_xx.cab
ddeml.dll /l c:\windows\system ([drive] is the
CD-ROM drive containing your Win98 CDROM and xx is 28 if you are running Win98
Second Edition, or 31 if you are running
Win98). Remove the Startup disk and restart
the computer.
Error Message: “Error Loading Kernel.
You Must Reinstall Windows.” Then,
after you receive this error message,
Windows quits.
Translation: You may get this error message when you start Windows.
Solution: To resolve this situation, extract a
new copy of the Kernel32.dll file from your
original Windows disks or CD-ROM. To do so,
follow these steps:
• Restart your computer. Press and hold
down the CTRL key while your computer
restarts until you see the Win98 Startup
menu, and then choose Command Prompt
Only. Type the following commands, pressing ENTER after each line:
cd\windows\system
ren kernel32.dll kernel32.xxx
• Extract a new copy of the Kernel32.dll file
from your original Windows disks or CDROM to the C:\WINDOWS\System folder
by typing extract [drive]:\win98\kernel32.dll /l c:\windows\system (where
[drive] is the CD-ROM drive containing your
Win98 CD-ROM). Press ENTER and restart
your computer.
Error Message: “Error Loading GDI.EXE.
You Must Reinstall Windows”
Translation: Windows may stop responding (hang) when you start up. The Bootlog.txt
file shows a “loadfail” status for all font files.
This error can occur if the Fonts folder is removed from the Windows folder.
Solution: To resolve this situation, reinstall
Windows or boot the computer with a Win98
Startup disk with CD-ROM support. (Or
choose Command Prompt Only from the
Windows 95/98 Startup menu if you have
real-mode CD-ROM drivers installed or if you
have a copy of the Windows source files on
your hard disk). Type the following commands, pressing ENTER after each command:
md c:\windows\fonts
attrib +s c:\windows\fonts
extract /a d:\win98\win98_22.cab *.fon /l
c:\windows\fonts
extract /a d:\win98\win98_22.cab *.ttf /l
c:\windows\fonts
Reboot the computer. If the Fonts folder
exists, just use the extract commands to extract
the fonts into the folder.
Error Message: “Error Loading GDI.EXE.
You Must Reinstall Windows”
Translation: When you start Win98, you
may receive this error message. After you
receive this error message, the computer may
stop responding (hang) or restart. This behavior may also occur when you start Win98 in
Safe Mode.
Most Hilarious Error Message
Reload Windows
here’s actually nothing hilarious about having to reinstall Windows, but the recommendation shows up quite often in Windows error messages.
Fortunately, reinstalling Windows doesn’t always mean starting over with a newly formatted hard drive and losing all your work. Reinstalling Windows doesn’t change your
currently installed programs
unless one of those programs has
previously replaced a Windows
system file. If a program does not
work correctly after you reinstall
Windows, reinstall the program,
but remember that the program
may be replacing one or more
Windows system files.
To reinstall Win98 system files,
reinstall Windows from your original installation media.
Often, using the System File Checker utility (sfc.exe) will leave your Registry settings intact.
Alternatively, it may be possible to simply replace a Windows OS file that is damaged
by extracting it from the installation CD. ■
T
PC Errors • 57
Windows 98
This behavior can occur if you are using a
VGA video adapter driver and one or more of
the following files are missing or damaged:
Vgasys.fon
Vgaoem.fon
Vga850.fon
Solution: To resolve this issue, rename the
Vgasys.fon, Vgaoem.fon, and Vga850.fon files (if
they exists) in the C:\WINDOWS\Fonts folder,
and then extract new copies of the Vgasys.fon,
Vgaoem.fon, and Vga850.fon files from your
original Win98 CD-ROM to the Windows\Fonts
folder (using the method outlined in the above
error message).
Device Failed Errors
Setup while the Copying Files dialog box is displayed. The Dial-Up Networking files are not
copied to the hard disk, but the file names are
added to the Registry. When the computer is
restarted, the files are requested and cannot be
found. This is followed by a list of missing files.
Solution: Copy down any of the information
you have your dialup configurations; it will all
be lost when you reinstall the dialup adapter.
To resolve this problem, remove and then
reinstall Dial-Up Networking. To do so, follow
these steps: Click Start, point to Settings, and
then click Control Panel. In Control Panel, double-click Add/Remove Programs. Click the
Windows Setup tab, and then click Communications. Click Details, and then click to clear the
Dial-Up Networking check box.
NOTE: If you receive the Ndiswan.vxd error message, click to clear the Virtual Private Networking
checkbox only.
• A PCI display adapter or ISA display adapter
may appear as a disabled device in Device
Manager.
• When your computer automatically restarts
for the second time during Win98 Setup, but
before Win98 is completely started, the information displayed on the screen may appear
distorted. Even though you may not be able
to read the information on the screen, Win98
starts successfully. This can happen if the ISA
display adapters may not be detected properly when you upgrade a Win95-based computer with an integrated PCI display adapter.
Solution: To resolve this issue, verify that
your integrated PCI display adapter is disabled
and then reinstall your ISA display adapter. To
do so, use the following steps:
• Verify that your integrated PCI display
adapter is disabled. For information about
how to do so, view the manufacturer’s documentation included with your integrated
PCI display adapter.
• Click Start, point to Settings, click Control
Panel, and then double-click Add New
Hardware. Windows should find the
new display adapter and install it.
Error Message: “VFAT Device Initialization Failed. A device or resource required by VFAT is not present or is
unavailable. VFAT cannot continue
loading. System halted.”
Translation: You may receive the error
message on a blue screen when you start
your computer. It can be caused if: the
Ifshlp.sys file is missing from the Windows
folder; if the Config.sys file contains a line
Error Message: “Hard Disk Errors
that points to a previous version of the
Caused by Damaged Data or
Ifshlp.sys file; if the following Ifshlp.sys
Physical Damage” or “Serious Disk
statement is deleted from the Config.sys file Some fixes to startup and shutdown problems require
Error Writing Drive <XX>” or
after you reinstall Windows: DEVICE=C:\ editing Win98’s Registry. Use regedit.exe to first make a
“Data Error Reading Drive <XX>”
Windows\Ifshlp.sys; if the [Paths] section in copy of your current version with the File/export function,
or “Error Reading Drive <XX>” or
the Msdos.sys file is incorrect; if a Win- then carefully follow the instructions provided for the fix.
“I/O Error” or “Seek Error - Sector
boot.ini file from a previous incomplete
not found”
Click Close, click OK, and then click Apply.
installation is present in the root folder on your
Translation: You may receive one of these
Startup disk; or if a “maxfilecache = 4096” line is When you are prompted to restart Windows, error messages when you are starting or
do so.
present in the System.ini file.
using your computer. These error messages
Click Start, point to Settings, and then click indicate either damaged data or physical
Solution: Extract a new copy of the file from
your original Windows CD-ROM to the Control Panel. In Control Panel, double-click damage on the hard disk.
Solution: To test the hard disk (where XX
Windows folder using the System File Checker Add/Remove Programs. Click the Windows
utility outlined in the “The Windows registry or Setup tab, and then click Communications. is the drive name), run ScanDisk. To run
SYSTEM.INI file refers to this device file, but the Click Details, and then click to select the Dial- ScanDisk from within Windows, click Start,
point to Programs, point to Accessories,
device file no longer exists. A Windows virtual Up Networking check box.
device driver (VxD) referenced in the System.ini
NOTE: If you cleared the Virtual Private point to System Tools, and then click
ScanDisk. Click the drive you want to examfile or registry is missing or damaged” error Networking checkbox, click to reselect it.
message above.
Click Close, and then click OK. If you are ine for errors.
Click Thorough and then click Start.
prompted to restart Windows, do so. If any addiError Message: “Cannot Find a Device tional protocols are necessary, add the protocols Running ScanDisk with the Thorough option
File That May Be Needed to Run Win- by using the Network tool in Control Panel.
selected examines the hard disk for physical
dows or a Windows application.” After
damage. If damaged data is detected,
you acknowledge this error message, Error Message: “Your display adapter is ScanDisk gives you the option to save the
Windows starts normally, but without not configured properly.”
damaged data to a file or to discard the data.
Translation: You may see this particular Be prepared to let the ScanDisk run for a long
Dial-Up Networking functionality.
Translation: You may see this if you install error message when you start Win98 after a time if you have a large disk.
Dial-Up Networking, Dial-Up Adapter, or new installation. It can appear for the followTo run ScanDisk from a command prompt
Virtual Private Networking and then cancel ing reasons:
outside of Windows, click the Start button,
58 • PC Errors
Windows 98
click Shut Down, Restart The Computer In
MS-DOS Mode, and then Yes.
Type scandisk <XX>: at the command
prompt (where <XX> is the letter of the hard
disk you want to check) and press ENTER.
When ScanDisk finishes its initial check, it
prompts you to perform a surface scan on the
drive. Click Yes or press ENTER.
If ScanDisk is unable to repair damaged
data or indicates that the hard disk has
physical damage, you may need to have the
disk replaced.
Error Message: “Cannot Shut Down
Windows with USR USB Modem and
ATI Rage 128 Video Adapter”
Translation: If you connect an external US
Robotics 56K USB modem to your computer
and install the latest drivers and you have an
ATI Rage 128 video adapter installed, you
may not be able to shut down Windows and
you may receive errors.
This issue can occur because of an incompatibility with some US Robotics 56K USB
modem drivers and earlier ATI Rage 128
video drivers.
Solution: Install version 4.11.6114 or later of
the ATI Rage 128 video drivers (available at
www.ati.com).
Error Message: “Problems Restarting
Computer with Device Using IRQ 12”
Translation: When you try to restart your
computer using the Restart The Computer
option in the Shut Down Windows dialog box,
your computer may stop responding (hang).
You might experience this on computers with
a BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) that
expects IRQ 12 to be in use by a PS/2-style
mouse port, but instead have a softwareconfigurable hardware device (such as a Plug
and Play adapter) using IRQ 12.
Solution: To work around this problem,
reserve IRQ 12 in Device Manager, or change
the IRQ for the software-configurable device in
Device Manager. If you are able to upgrade the
BIOS in your computer to a later version, this
would be a better solution.
To reserve an IRQ with Device Manager,
follow these steps:
• In Control Panel, double-click System. On
the Device Manager tab, double-click
Computer. On the Reserve Resources tab,
click the Interrupt Request (IRQ) option,
and then click Add. In the Value box, click
the IRQ you want to reserve.
• Click OK until you return to Control Panel.
Most Common Error Message
indows Protection errors are common for many reasons, as they are a kind of
catch-all for problems in various parts of Windows.
You’ll see Windows Protection error messages under any of these conditions:
• If a real-mode driver and a protected-mode driver are in conflict
• If the Registry is damaged
• If either the Win.com file or the
Command.com file are infected with
a virus, or if either file is damaged
• If a protected-mode driver is loaded
from the System.ini file and the driver is already initialized
• If there is a physical I/O (input/output) address conflict or a RAM address conflict.
• If there are incorrect CMOS (complimentary metal-oxide semiconductor) settings for a
built-in peripheral device.
• If the Plug and Play feature of the computer’s BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) is not
working correctly.
• If the computer contains a malfunctioning memory.
• If the computer’s motherboard is not working properly.
• If you installed Microsoft Office 97 and you are using the Novell Client 32 software
W
Error Message: “MSGSRV32.EXE Caused
a General Protection Fault in module
CM8330SB.DRV,” or “EXPLORER caused
a general protection fault in module
CM8330SB.DRV,” or “Iexplore caused an
general protection fault in module
cm8330.drv”
Translation: When you shut down or
restart your computer, you may receive one of
these error messages and your computer may
stop responding (hang). This issue can occur if
your computer uses a sound card or a modem
that is based on the C-Media CMI8330 sound
chip. This sound chip is used as the basis for
several sound cards and some modems.
Solution: Contact the manufacturer of your
sound card or modem to inquire about the availability of an updated driver for your sound card
or modem.
NOTE: You can also try to use the C-Media
Win98 sound card driver version 4.10.00.0152 or
later. This driver is available at www.cmedia.com.tw.
Restart your computer in Safe mode and
press and hold down CTRL until you see the
Win98 Startup menu and then choose Safe
Mode. Click Start, point to Settings, click
Control Panel, and then double-click System.
Click the Device Manager tab.
Double-click the Sound, Video And Game
Controllers branch to expand it.
Click your sound card and then click
Properties. On the Drivers tab, click Driver File
Details. Check to see that you are using the
Cm8330sb.drv driver. On the General tab, click
to select the Disable In This Hardware Profile
check box. Click OK, and then click Close.
Restart your computer normally.
Error Message: There is no specific message, but your computer stops responding
when you try to shut it down.
Translation: This problem can occur if
your computer uses ACPI (Advanced Configuration and Power Interface) and the Fast
Shutdown feature is disabled.
Solution: This fix is contained in late versions of Windows Service Packs. Install all service packs by going to . To work around this
problem, enable the Fast Shutdown feature. To
do this, click Start, point to Programs, point to
Accessories, point to System tools, and then
click System Information.
On the Tools menu, click System Configuration Utility. On the General tab, click Advanced. Click the Disable Fast Shutdown check
box to clear it, click OK, and then click OK
again. Click Yes when you are prompted to
restart your computer. RS
by Scott Koegler
PC Errors • 59
Windows 98
Windows 98
Hardware Errors
Decipher The Undecipherable
hen it was introduced, Windows 98
was a step up from Windows 95,
offering new features, new errors,
and new annoyances. But that was six years
ago; ancient, by technology standards.
Microsoft still offers support for Win98, but
many third-party developers do not, which
creates a troublesome situation for any computer user still using Win98. Getting new drivers or updated products can be all but
impossible. That much aside, the fact that
some people still use Win98 makes a clear
statement about the venerable operating system’s staying power and its ability to perform as needed in most situations.
But, let’s face it: Few things can be more discouraging than trying to figure out a problem
whose solution repeatedly escapes you. No
end of stress and frustration can come from a
critical error that crashes your computer every
time you fix it. Win98 was good for its time,
but for every good feature it had, there was a
major bug just around the corner waiting to be
found; a problem some users still deal with
today. Fortunately, Microsoft’s Support Center
and Knowledge Base both continue to provide
some help in correcting errors and problems
with Win98. Compiling a list of every error
found in Win98 and how to correct them all is
a monumental task, but read on for a variety of
different hardware-related errors that most
users will encounter sooner or later.
W
Driver Errors
Computer drivers are system files that
dictate how a computer interacts with its
hardware; these files enable the computer to
communicate with and control all of its
installed hardware. Errors with malfunctioning hardware are commonly caused by
problems with drivers, so it is important to
keep drivers current and monitor them for
conflicts with more recently-installed drivers.
Error Message: “CD-RW is not under
Direct CD’s control”
60 • PC Errors
Translation: This error may
show up if you try to perform
a write action and you have
a Ricoh CD-RW drive and
are running Adaptec’s
DirectCD software. Your
system lacks an up-to-date
Adaptec driver, which prevents
it from communicating properly
with the CD-RW drive.
Solution: To correct this error, you need
to get a current version of the Adaptec driver. Many of Adaptec’s programs are now
handled by Roxio, however, so you’ll need to
contact them to get the driver. When Roxio
took over programs in the Adaptec product
line, it bundled DirectCD into the Easy CD
& DVD Creator software package. All of this
may seem a bit confusing, but the good
news is that support for this program hasn’t
gone away, it has simply switched names
and locations.
To download the updated driver file for
DirectCD, go to www.roxio.com/en/sup
port/ecdc/software_updatesv6.jhtml#A
and click the bottom download link. You
will need to register at the Roxio Web site
in order to access the download, but once
that is done, run the EXE file that downloads
to your computer.
After all of this, the issue should be fixed.
If not, you may want to consider upgrading
to a more current product, such as Roxio’s
Easy CD & DVD Creator 7.
Error Message: “Error writing to LPTx
for Printer XX, there may be a problem
with the Network or password is incorrect.” Or when you install a printer,
you may not be able to print after you
restart the computer.
Translation: This problem can happen
when devices have drivers that were loaded
into the [386Enh] (which stands for 386
Enhanced Mode, an operational mode in
older Windows versions) section of the
Registry files. According to Microsoft’s
Support Center, the following devices are
known to have this problem:
Cis1284.386 from Canon Multipass
Lex01.386 from Lexmark
Lexsw2.386 from Lexmark
Mpass.386 from Canon Multipass
Okiport.386 from Okidata laser printers
Sumovmi.386 from Panasonic KXP-6100
laser printers
Vcpd.386
Vecpd.386 from Netscape Navigator
Hpypeppy.386 from HP
Solution: To fix this problem, you need to
change your system.ini file to correct the way
the devices were entered. To make this
change, open the Start Menu and go into the
Program section. Click the Accessories submenu, and you should be able to open the
Windows Explorer. Within the Windows
Explorer, click on the Windows folder, and
locate the System.ini file.
Right-click System.ini, and choose to open
it with Notepad. (Be careful not to make any
other changes to the file.) Find the [386Enh]
section, and then Microsoft Support Center
suggests disabling the following lines by
adding a semicolon (;) at the beginning of
the line:
• DEVICE=<path>\Cis1284.386
• DEVICE=<path>\Lex01.386
• DEVICE=<path>\Okiport.386
• DEVICE=<path>\Sumovmi.386
Windows 98
• DEVICE=<path>\Vcpd.386
• DEVICE=<path>\Vecpd.386
After making any necessary corrections,
save and exit the file. Then restart your
computer. If the problem persists, return to
the system.ini file and disable any line in
the [386Enh] section that ends in an extension .386.
Artisoft. Contact information is available at
www.artisoft.com, though we could not find
updated drivers on that site.
Audio Device. Then click Next and Finish,
then select Yes.
Go back into the Control Panel once again
and select the System icon this time. Go into
the Device Manager by selecting the appropriate tab at the top, and then click the plus
sign (+) next to the CD-ROM branch to expand its options. Select the CD-ROM drive
from the available options, and select the
Properties button. From there, click the
Settings tab and choose the option to clear
the DMA (direct memory access). Then click
OK twice. Now your driver should be
successfully reinstalled, which should
correct any problems you’re having with the
CD-ROM drive.
If none of this worked, however, it is quite
possible you have a problem with the CD
drive itself. If this turns out to be the case, the
easiest solution would just be to replace the
defective drive with new hardware.
Error Message: “Please insert an audio
compact disc,” or “Data or no disc
loaded” when trying to run the
Microsoft CD player.
Translation: Your computer is unable to
read the CD in your CD drive. This may
Error Message: “Spool32 caused mean there is a problem with your CD or
an invalid page fault in module your CD drive, but most likely it means that
WNPP32.DLL” when trying to print there’s a problem with your driver.
on a LANtastic network printer.
Solution: The first thing you should
Translation: This error is caused by a check in an instance such as this is the condidriver problem with your printer, causing a tion of the CD in the drive. If there is no CD
communication error between your computer in the drive, or the CD is damaged or conand the network printer. It can be caused by tains an error with the data, then the fault
either an error in your real-mode LANtastic isn’t with your hardware; you simply need to
drivers, or your Artisoft Lantnet drivers may replace the compact disc. If you have multibe out-of-date.
ple CD drives, try putting the
disc in a different drive and
Solution: To correct the
System Registry Errors
check to see if the player will
possible errors, you need
read it then.
to either fix your LANtastic
The system Registry files dictate what proIf everything with the phys- grams are installed and loaded upon startup.
drivers or you need to get
ical media seems to be in Errors in these files can cause software to be
an updated version of the
order, it’s worth reinstalling loaded improperly, and can cause malfuncArtisoft Lantnet driver.
A malfunctioning CD drive
the driver to correct any pos- tions with different hardware interfaces.
To fix the LANtastic drican cause this error.
sible errors with it. Access Changing these files can be dangerous if
vers, you will need to edit the
your Control Panel (go to the done carelessly because it can remove inteStartnet.bat file in order to disable its “net use lptx” statement. To find the Start Menu, click Settings, and then select gral parts of your operating system. It is
file with the search tool, go into the Start the Control Panel). Select the Multimedia always a good idea to make a backup copy
Menu and select Find. Click on the Files or icon and click the Devices tab. Find the of these files before changing them, and
Folders option, and type startnet.bat into the Media Control Devices
take care to only make
Name box. Click Find Now. After a quick branch in the displayed
specific changes.
search, the file should appear in the list of tree and click it to expand it. Then select the
found files.
Right-click this file and select Properties CD Audio Device conError Message: “Canfrom the menu of options. If Read Only is trol, and click the Propnot find autorun.exe”
checked, click it to remove the check and erties button.
when trying to acFrom this point, click
allow the file to be edited. Then right-click
cess a hard drive; the
the file again and open the file with the Remove and then Yes
hard disk icon in My
Notepad text editor. Inside the editor, press when prompted. Click
Computer appears as
CTRL-F to bring up the search tool. In the OK twice, and you will
a CD drive icon.
find field, type net use lptx and click on the have to restart your Use Windows 98’s Find command to
Translation: This
track down critical system files.
Find button. This should place the cursor at computer.
error occurs when you
the proper statement; if it does not, make
have an autorun file in
When your computer
sure the case-sensitive box is not checked and has been restarted, go back into the Control the root directory of your hard drive.
the phrase was typed correctly. When you Panel (from the Start Menu, click Settings Autorun files are files that cause a CD to
find the statement, type rem before it to edit and the Control Panel). Instead of going back automatically load up and start running
the statement out. Save and close the file, and to Multimedia, this time double-click the a program when a disc is placed in the
then restart your computer. (If this change Add New Hardware icon. Click Next twice, CD drive.
Solution: Fixing this problem is relatively
causes errors, you can easily undo the change and choose the option to select the new hardby deleting the newly added “rem.”)
ware from a list. Select the sound controllers simple. All that is required is to find the
If this doesn’t work, you may need to from the list and click the Next button. Then, affected file and rename it.
The file should be located in the root
change the driver. To get an up-to-date in the list of manufacturers select Microsoft
Lantnet driver, you will need to contact MCI, and in the list of models click the CD directory (the very first folder in the drive,
PC Errors • 61
Windows 98
which contains all the other folders and files
on the hard drive; typically labeled “C:”) of
the affected hard drive. To find the file, you
can do one of two things: Search for the file
manually, or use Win98’s built-in search
capabilities.
To find it manually, first go into My
Computer (go to the Start Menu and click
the My Computer icon). Within the My
Computer folder, open the affected hard
drive, which should put you in the root
directory. In the list of files shown, you
should be able to find Autorun.inf.
To find the file with the search tool, go into
the Start Menu and select Find. Click the
Files or Folders option, and type autorun.inf
into the Name box. Click Find Now. After a
quick search, Autorun.inf should appear in
the list of found files. Right-click this file and
select Properties from the menu of options. If
Read Only is checked, click it to remove the
check and allow the file to be edited. Then,
right-click the file again and select the
Rename option. Rename the file to autorun.x
and press ENTER. This will hide the file from
any processes looking for it without deleting
any necessary data.
When you restart your computer, your
hard drive should resume working normally.
Error Message: Windows does not
detect Some Plug and Play pointers,
and running the Add New Hardware
Wizard does not correct the problem.
Translation: Certain Plug and Play
devices (such as the Microsoft Plug and Play
Serial Mouse, Microsoft EasyBall, Microsoft
IntelliMouse) don’t work with Win98 because
the system does not automatically recognize
them when they are first installed. This problem occurs because your computer’s Registry
files still contain entries for a different kind
of pointing device, so Windows does not
install the new ones.
Solution: Correcting these problems
requires editing your Registry files. Always
make a backup copy of your Registry files
(System.dat, User.dat) before editing them,
whatever the circumstances.
The first step to correcting your Registry
files is to save them. Click the Start button
and select the Run option. In the text box,
type regedit and click OK. This will bring up
the Registry menu; select Export Registry
File. When saving the Registry file, be sure to
save it in a location you are familiar with
and use frequently, such as the Desktop or a
62 • PC Errors
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: Win98 reboots continuously or locks up with more than 1.5GB of memory.
Translation: Win98 was never designed to handle as much memory as is commonly
available today; 1GB is too much for it and actually causes it to become less stable, even
causing critical errors like a perpetual reboot cycle or simply locking up.
Solution: The easiest solution to this problem is to not install so much memory on a
machine running Win98: If your computer’s processor is capable of dealing with that
amount of RAM, you should consider upgrading to a more suitable operating system.
However, if you have already invested in the superfluous RAM, and can’t upgrade to
Windows 2000 or XP, then there is a solution for you.
If you add “MaxPhysPage=400000” to the [386enh] section of the System.ini file, you
will limit the amount of RAM that Win98 has access to. This intentionally disables the additional RAM, making it even more worthless with the older OS. To make this change, go
into the Start Menu and go into the Programs section. Click on the Accessories submenu,
and you should be able to open the Windows Explorer. Within the Windows Explorer, click
the Windows folder and locate the System.ini file.
Right-click System.ini, and choose to open it with Notepad (be careful not to make any
other changes to the file). Find the [386Enh] section, and add the line
“MaxPhysPage=400000” in it. Save the file, close it, and restart your computer. ■
If they exist, also remove:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ENUM\
ROOT\MOUSE\<nnnn>; again, where
<nnnn> is an incremental four-digit number
that starts at 0000.
Tread lightly in the Registry Editor, and always
back up your Registry before making changes.
folder of personalized documents. Name the
file something meaningful that will be easy
for you to remember, such as Registrybak,
and save it.
NOTE: Taking the extra minute to perform
this backup before any Registry change, no matter
how minor the change may seem, can save you
quite a lot of heartache down the road. We recommend that you always back up the Registry before
attempting any Registry fix.
The next step is to remove the Registry
entries that no longer apply to your computer’s current setup. The entries to look
for, according to the Microsoft Support
Center, are:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\
CURRENTCONTROLSET\SERVICES\CLASS
\MOUSE\<nnnn>, where <nnnn> is an incremental four-digit number that starts at 0000.
Both of the following Registry keys also
need to be removed, if they are there:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ENUM\
Serenum
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\LOGITECH\Mouseware
Then go back to the Desktop, right-click
the My Computer icon, and select Properties.
Select the Device Manager section from the
tabs above. In the list of system devices,
select each pointing device and press the
Remove button, and then click OK. When
you restart Windows, the system should
automatically detect the connected pointers
and they should begin to work.
Error Message: “Unable to open port”
when trying to use the Angia PCMCIA
(Personal Computer Memory Card
International Association) modem.
Translation: This error occurs because
the software included with the modem has
created an invalid entry in your computer’s
System.ini file (which is an initialization file
that stores configuration data). Correcting
Windows 98
the error involves editing this file to repair
the software’s error. Be as careful with this
file as you would be with a Registry change.
Solution: To make this change, open
the Start Menu and go into the Program
section. Click the Accessories submenu, and
you should be able to open the Windows
Explorer. Within the Windows Explorer,
click on the Windows folder, and locate the
System.ini file.
Right-click System.ini and
choose to open it with Notepad
(be careful not to make any other
changes to the file). Press down
CTRL-F to start Notepad’s search
tool, and type [Boot] in the Find
field. Run the search, which
should set the cursor at the
[Boot] section of the System.ini
file. In this section, locate the line
“Comm.drv=” and change it to
read “Comm.drv=Comm.drv.”
Save and close the file, and then
restart Windows.
an LS-120 drive, despite having additional space on the drive and having it
set as write-enabled.
Translation: A file called ‘Pgrmcvsd.vxd’
is being improperly loaded from your computer’s hard drive, which is preventing the
drive from writing data properly.
Solution: Fixing this problem is relatively
simple, and quite comparable to the “Cannot
Properties from the menu of options. If Read
Only is checked, click it to remove the check
and allow the file to be edited. Then, rightclick the file again and select the Rename
option. Rename the file to Pgrmcvsd.x and
press ENTER. This will hide the file from any
processes looking for it without deleting any
necessary data
When you restart your computer, your
LS-120 drive should resume
working normally.
Error Message: “Invalid
Drive Specifications” after
booting your computer from
a floppy boot disk.
Translation: This problem
occurs when you do not follow
the proper instructions for booting from a floppy diskette while
using a drive-overlay program.
The drive overlay prevents users
from accessing the hard drive if
booting from a floppy.
Solution: To correct this probLoading Errors
lem, you need to load the drive
Windows Explorer can help you find the System.ini file, which may be the
Load processes on your sysoverlay program before booting
cause of an “Unable to open port” error.
tem can create problems if they
the computer from the floppy
are in error, as they can load
diskette; refer to the manuals and
components of your computer improperly. find autorun.exe” error above; as with that documentation that came with the overlay
This can create errors in the way your system error, all you need to do is find the file that’s software for assistance in doing this.
reads from the different drives to which it is causing the problem and rename it. To find
Hardware Setup Errors
connected. Fortunately, these errors are often the file with the search tool, go into the Start
Menu and select Find. Click the Files or
easy to correct.
Some of the most common and most simple
Folders option, and enter Pgrmcvsd.vxd into errors can stem from setup and connection
Error Message: “Cannot copy file to the Name box. Click Find Now. After a quick errors. These typically result from hardware
disk, the disk may be full or write-pro- search, the file should appear in the list of being installed improperly, either in the physitected,” when trying to write data with found files. Right-click this file and select cal connection or the way the hardware was
integrated into the system. Plug and Play and
USB (Universal Serial Bus) ports have eliminated some of the issues with hardware inteMost Common Error Message
gration, but in earlier systems running on
Error Message: “The Windows 98 CD was not found in your CD-ROM drive.”
Win98 they can still be problems.
Translation: This error occurs when Win98 tries to update its system files (usually to add
or modify a driver) and cannot find the necessary files, either on the system or on the
Win98 CD. This error may be as simple as not having the right CD in the CD drive, but it
typically happens when Win98 was installed from a source other than the CD, such as a
shared network installation.
Solution: If you have access to the Win98 CD, insert it into your CD ROM drive and click
Retry. If you installed Win98 from a different source, you will have to locate the necessary
folders manually. Click the Browse button and select the file folder Win98 was originally
installed from. If the file cannot be found in either the original Windows directory or the
Win98 CD, you may need to contact Microsoft (www.microsoft.com), or the third-party
producers of your software to acquire the necessary driver files. ■
Error Message: “While initializing
device vkd - Windows Protection Error
- You need to restart your computer”
upon startup.
Translation: This means that the keyboard failed to initialize on startup, and is
generally a good indication of a failed piece
of hardware, or possibly a simple connection issue.
Solution: Turn off the computer, and then
disconnect the keyboard from the machine
before reconnecting it. Be sure to insert the
plug securely into the port. If the error
PC Errors • 63
Windows 98
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “An error occurred while Windows was working with the Control Panel
file ...\SYSTEM\JOY.CPL” when trying to open the Game Controllers application in the
Control Panel.
Translation: This error occurs because a DLL (Dynamic Link Library) file is corrupt or
missing. These files typically contain functions required for applications, although they
may also contain data used by those applications. The specific file in this case is
Dinput.dll.
Solution: First step in repairing this DLL file is finding out whether it is missing or damaged.
To find the file with the search tool, go into the Start Menu and select Find. Click the
Files or Folders option, and type dinput.dll into the Name box. Click Find Now. After a
quick search, the file should appear in the list of found files. If it does not, then the file is
missing. If the file does appear, then it needs to be renamed because it is corrupt.
Right-click this file and select Properties. If Read Only is checked, click on it to remove
the check and allow the file to be edited. Then, right-click the file again and select the
Rename option. Rename the file dinput.x and press ENTER. This will hide the file from
any processes looking for it without deleting any necessary data.
Next, you must find a fresh version of the file. Insert your original Win98 CD-ROM. If
Windows setup automatically loads, close the program. Go through the process of finding
the DLL file again, but this time search on the CD instead of the hard drive. Once you find
the file, go into the Start Menu and click Run. Type sfc into the command prompt to
extract a file from the Windows CD. Select the option to extract a single file and then
select Browse to locate the file, or type in the path name for the file if you previously
found it. Once the proper file is selected, click OK and follow the directions to finish
extracting the file. ■
repeats itself, try your keyboard on another
computer, and try another keyboard on that
computer; if the keyboard doesn’t work on
either computer, then it must be damaged
and should be replaced.
Error Message: Setup does not always
retain information on your current
monitor type when upgrading to, or
reinstalling Win98.
Translation: When you upgrade to
Win98 from Win95, or if you just reinstall
Win98, it’s possible that your monitor data
could be lost and your monitor will show up
as ‘Unknown Monitor’ in the device settings.
Solution: To correct this problem, you
must manually pick your monitor type. First,
go into the Control Panel by going through
the Start Menu and then the Settings icon.
Select the Display icon and click the Settings
tab, and click the Advanced button to bring
up your monitor’s advanced settings. Select
the Monitor tab and click Change. Then, in
the Manufacturers box, select the manufacturer for your monitor and move on to
64 • PC Errors
the Models box. Click the model of the monitor you are using and select OK twice, and
the problem should be
corrected.
computer up in Safe Mode first, to access
your system settings.
To enter Safe Mode, restart your computer
and hold down the CTRL key. This should
bring up the Win98 Startup menus, which
gives you a set of boot options for Win98.
(If the CTRL key does not bring up the
Win98 Startup Menus, restart and try the
F8 key instead.)
Select Safe Mode, which disables most
Windows functions but grants enough access
so that users can troubleshoot and fix their
computers. Your Desktop will load with a
minimal set of drivers, which may mean
your desktop will look quite a bit different.
Don’t panic; everything is still there, but
sometimes certain video drivers will not
load, which explains the odd appearance of
your Desktop.
Go to the Start Menu and click the Control
Panel. Then select the System icon and bring
up the Device Manager by clicking on the
matching tab at the top. In the list of devices,
locate the System Devices branch, and click
the plus sign (+) to expand it. Find the PCI
Bus device and click it to bring up its details.
Select the Properties button to bring up the
in-depth details for the PCI (Peripheral
Component Interconnect) Bus, and click the
IRQ Steering tab. The Use IRQ Steering
checkbox should be selected; you’ll want to
click this checkbox to deselect it (remove the
check mark). That done, click the OK button
and restart your computer.
Once IRQ steering is
disabled, the BIOS will be
able to assign its own IRQ
and take precedence over
other hardware.
Error Message: “Error
writing to drive C:”
displayed on a blue
Memory Errors
screen at startup.
Translation: The comMemory is an integral
puter is telling you that
part of your computer,
there is a problem with
storing the details and
your BIOS (Basic Input
processes needed to run
/Output System). More
its operating system and
than likely, Windows has
other programs. If there
created a problem with Click the Virtual Memory button to
is a problem accessing
the IRQ (Interupt Re- free up more system memory.
either your computer’s
quest Line, which allows
RAM or its storage dethe BIOS to communicate
vices, it may be unable to
with the hard drive) by assigning another load the information needed to run properly.
device to the same IRQ and creating a critical These errors can be mild or severe, from cordevice conflict.
rupt data sectors and bad file information to
Solution: One of the ways to correct this an inability to run at all. Here we present a
problem is to disable your computer’s IRQ sampling of common memory errors and
steering. This will require you to start your how to solve them.
Windows 98
Error Message: “Drive converter unable
to find the drive partition” when using
the Microsoft Drive Converter to change
a file system from FAT16 to FAT32.
Translation: This error shows up when
you try to convert at a drive configured using
the FAT16 file system that starts above the
8GB point into a FAT32 drive.
Solution: To fix this problem, you must
remove any partitions above the 8GB limit
and repartition them in allowable spaces.
Before changing the partitions on your drive,
it’s important to remember to back up all of
your data to prevent the possibility of losing
it in a mistake. You’ve heard it before, and
we’ll say it again: Always make regular backups of your data, especially when attempting
to fix an error.
To change the partitions of your hard
drive, go into the Start Menu and into
Programs. Select the MS-DOS prompt. Once
at the command prompt, type fdisk. Press Y
when you are asked whether or not you
would like to enable large disk support.
Select option 4, and then press Y to view the
partition information for all the drives available. Press ESC, and then enter 3. Now enter
the letter that matches the last drive listed in
the extended partition. Enter the volume
label displayed to the left of the drive and
press ENTER. Press Y, then ENTER, followed
by ESC twice. Afterwards, press 1 and 3, both
followed by ENTER. When prompted to use
up all of the remaining space, press Y and
press ENTER. Finally, press ESC and type
exit to finish up. Press ENTER and restart
your machine. After you restart your computer, go into My Computer (through the
Start Menu, if it isn’t available on your
Desktop) and select the last hard drive.
Click Format, select Full, and click on Start to
finish up.
Error Message: Win98 becomes unstable after disabling virtual memory.
Translation: Win98 requires at least
16MB of RAM to run steadily (the more RAM
you have, however, the better Win98 will
perform). Disabling the virtual memory
forces Windows to use more real memory,
which cuts into its minimum requirements
and causes it to run much less reliably.
Solution: There are two ways to solve this
problem: Install more memory or enable your
computer’s virtual memory again. Doing
both of these will also help make your computer more stable.
Installing more memory is simple; check
your computer’s documentation to find out
what kind of memory your computer uses.
A quick trip to the local computer store
and a few minutes spent snapping memory
modules into place can easily fix several
memory errors.
To enable the virtual memory on your computer, you must restart it and hold down the
CTRL key as Win98 loads (or, as noted before,
possibly the F8 key); this will send it to the
Win98 Startup menu, where you can select the
mode that Windows boots in. For this fix,
select the Safe Mode option. Then, once the
operating system loads, click the Start Menu,
and go through Settings to get to the Control
Panel. Select the System icon, and go to the
Performance section by clicking the Performance tab. Then click Virtual Memory and
select the option to let Windows manage your
virtual memory.
Click the OK button and then close the tool.
It will prompt you to restart your computer;
do so at the soonest opportunity to resolve the
memory issue and hopefully make Windows
more reliable. RS
by Andrew Stuart
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “Setup has detected the following decoding error: ‘Could not decode
this setup (.CAB) file.’ Setup will attempt to recover from this situation, click OK to continue.” Or “Setup (.cab) file error Setup has detected the following decoding error: Setup
has detected a corrupt setup (.cab) file. Setup will attempt to recover from this situation”
when trying to install Win98, or Win98 components from the original CD.
Translation: As it tried to install some necessary files, Win98 encountered corrupted,
unusable files. Without those files, the setup process may or may not be able to continue.
The files usually become corrupted through the process of reading them from the CDROM, which can be caused by several different things. There may be a malfunction in
your CD-ROM drive that is preventing the CD from being read properly, or the disc may
be damaged. Your computer may also be overheating as a result of overclocking or a
malfunction in the cooling devices within your computer; the extra heat can cause errors
in the way files are decoded, which prevent them from being read properly. It could also
be caused by a malfunction in your computer’s memory, resulting from mismatched RAM
or BUS speeds. Other standard potential problems could also be a factor, such as a virus
or an improperly installed piece of hardware.
Solution: The first step in trying to correct this error is to check the CD in the CD-ROM
drive. Remove it and clean it with a soft cloth. Reinsert the CD in the drive and see if the
system can properly read the files on the CD.
Run a virus scanner on your computer as an initial solution. Viruses can create a number of problems for Windows users, and running a scanner is usually a simple (if timeconsuming) process.
If the problem persists, try installing real-mode CD-ROM drivers, which should be
available on the Win98 Startup Disk. Boot your computer in DOS and run Windows
Setup from the startup disk.
If you are able to access the contents of the Windows CD from within Windows, copy
the contents of the disc to new folder on your computer’s hard disk and try running
Windows setup from your hard drive.
If none of these methods have worked, boot Windows through the step-by-step confirmation mode. To do this, restart your computer and hold down the CTRL key until it
brings up the Windows startup menu. Select the Step-by-Step confirmation method and
press Y to accept each prompt except for Process Your Startup Device Drivers (CONFIG.SYS) and Process Your Startup Command File (AUTOEXEC.BAT).
If none of these methods correct the problem, Microsoft’s support center
(support.microsoft.com) lists several other potential fixes, including some extensive setup
methods. ■
PC Errors • 65
Windows 98
Windows 98
Software Errors
Don’t Get Shut Down
ven if they don’t know the names, most
Windows users are familiar with some of
the more deadly errors commonly encountered during routine use: general protection fault, fatal exception error, invalid page
fault, illegal shutdown, insufficient memory,
runtime error, and the infamous “blue screen”
error. Often, the only way around these errors is
to reboot your system and hope for the best.
There is hope, however. Some error messages
are clearly defined, and using resources included with your computer or support services provided by Microsoft can actually help resolve the
problem. In the pages that follow, we’ll discuss
some common Windows 98 errors, what they
mean, and common solutions. These are not all
of the problems that Win98 can present; however, the steps below can serve as a guide to point
you in the right direction.
E
System Maintenance Error
Routine system tasks can cause errors. These
errors are fairly innocuous and have straightforward solutions, and they are also the errors
you are most likely to encounter. Some situations that can cause these errors are:
• Renaming or deleting files
• Installing or uninstalling files
• Incorrect characters in filenames
• General drive errors
• Directory errors
Though there are many types of these
errors, below is a short list of errors and
their solutions.
Error Message: “Can’t open uninstall
log file XX”
Translation: This error occurs when you
use Add/Remove Programs from the Control
Panel to remove a file that has already been
deleted. If the log file (X) has been previously
deleted, the error can also occur.
Solution: Because the uninstallation routine cannot proceed without the log file, you
must manually delete the file. If you still can’t
66 • PC Errors
delete the file, try reinstalling the
program and then use
Add/Remove Programs to completely uninstall the offending
program.
Error Message: “An error occurred
while trying to remove X. Uninstallation
has been cancelled.”
Translation: If you click a program in the
Install/Uninstall tab in Add/Remove Programs
that has already been deleted, you will get this
error. Windows may abort the procedure if the
program is no longer present or has been
renamed.
Solution: Software in the Install/Uninstall
box is harmless, though it may be a nuisance.
You would be wise to leave the software alone,
as removing it will require editing the
Registry, which is a tricky procedure. If you
must remove it, back up the Registry before
beginning. Click the Start menu and click Run.
Type regedit and press ENTER. Click Registry
and then click Export Registry File. Name the
file and save it on the Desktop. Next, drill
down through the Registry and locate the following line of text: HKEY_LOCAL_MACH
INE\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\CURRENTVERSION\Uninstall. The
line directly under this is the name of the software that you want to delete. Delete the line
containing the name of the file and the software will be gone.
Error Message: “Unable to create directory.”
Translation: You have tried to name a file
or folder using more than 67 characters while
in DOS mode.
Solution: Start your computer in Windows
and rename the file using Windows Explorer.
To access Windows Explorer, right-click the
Start button on the Windows taskbar and then
click Explore. Find the file, right-click it, and
click Rename. Type in the new file name and
press ENTER.
Error Message: “Program does not run
under Windows.”
Translation: Variations of this message
occur when you try to run a program in
Windows that is designed to run only in DOS.
Solution: First, verify the software works by
running it in DOS mode. Start DOS by clicking
Start, Shut Down, and Restart in MS-DOS Mode.
Run the software from the prompt to determine
whether it works. Return to Windows. Create a
shortcut by right-clicking the icon in Windows
Explorer and clicking Create Shortcut. Rightclick the shortcut and choose Properties; on the
Program tab, click Advanced, check the MSDOS mode box, click OK, and exit. If the application will not launch because Windows is
running, repeat the earlier steps and check the
Prevent MS-DOS-Based Programs From Detecting Windows box and exit.
Error Message: “Error starting the program. The XX file cannot start. Check the
file to determine the problem”
Translation: A program you have installed
(XX) has replaced a Windows file with a file of
its own.
Solution: You must eliminate the new file
and replace it with the old one. Possible files
that need to be substituted are: Comctl32.dll,
Comdlg32.dll, Shell32.dll, Iz32.dll, Version.dll,
and Winmm.dll. Copying these files from the
Windows/Sysbckup folder is probably the easiest way to restore them. Find the old file in the
folder, right-click it, and click Copy. Drill into
the Windows/System folder, right-click an
empty area, and click Paste. Now, locate and
delete the improper file in this same folder.
Windows 98
Error Message: “The following system
files have been replaced with older versions by a program you recently ran.
These files are currently in use and cannot be automatically repaired. Windows
may not run correctly until you exit and
restart Windows so that the files can be
automatically repaired. C:\Windows
\System\XX”
Translation: Software that you have
installed has overwritten some system files. The
file name in the error is the file that’s been overwritten. Any erroneous files should be shown in
the error message.
Solution: Rename the overwritten file by
changing the file extension to, for example, *.old.
Go to the Windows\Sysbckup folder, find the
files that correspond to the ones you renamed,
and copy them to Windows\System (as in the
tip above). If your system has frozen and you
cannot replace the file, reboot the system. Press
the F8 key to access the Startup Menu. Choose
Command Prompt Only and type cd \windows\system, ren XX XX.old, cd \windows\sysbckup, and copy XX \windows
\system\XX at the command prompt, inserting
appropriate file names in place of XX.
example, if you have an Excel document
open and you try to delete that file using
Windows Explorer) this error will occur.
Attempting to delete a temporary file in
Windows Explorer while Windows is using it
will also cause this error.
Solution: Close the file that is causing the
error. If Windows is using a system file, rebooting your system will release the file and allow
you to delete it.
Error Message: “Cannot find the file X or
one of its components”
Translation: If you move, delete, or uninstall a program or clear a drive of unnecessary
files, you may have mistakenly deleted a file
necessary to run the application or load a file.
Solution: Check the Recycle Bin. If the file is
present, restore it (right-click the file and click
Restore). If not, reinstall the software that contains the file.
Error Message: “Drive X contains errors
that must be corrected before the drive
can be compressed.”
Translation: This error and ones similar to
it may be a result of a folder name with more
than 66 characters. DOS
Error Message: “Canwill not allow long folder
not delete: Cannot
names, while Windows
find the specified file.
will. Running ScanDisk on
Make sure you specify
a drive (X) using the
the correct path and When Windows encounters a character Automatically Fix Errors
in a file name that is not allowed, it
filename.”
option treats the system as
Translation: Varia- shows this error message.
if it’s running in DOS.
tions of this message can
Solution: Run ScanDisk
occur when you click a file in Windows to determine the troublesome file and deselect
Explorer to open, delete, or drag it to the Automatically Fix Errors. Determine the offendRecycle Bin. The file or folder may contain ing folder if the message reappears and rename
invalid characters, even though they may not it. If an application created the name, keep it but
appear in the filename.
try moving the folder to a temporary location
Solution: Create a temporary folder, copy with a shorter name. Return the file to its origithe file or folder’s contents to it and delete nal location after ScanDisk has completed.
the old folder’s contents by pressing CTRL-A
Invalid Page Fault Error
and pressing DELETE. Restore all the files
except the improperly named one to the old
When programs and the Windows operating
folder. Use a single-character wildcard ques- system pass invalid parameters among them, an
tion mark to replace the invalid character (i.e. error known as an invalid page fault will occur.
to rename a file named *eadme.txt, type ren An invalid page fault results when an invalid
?eadme.txt readme.txt).
parameter within a program causes the program
to run invalid instructions. The following are
Error Message: “Error Deleting File. some situations that may cause invalid instrucCannot delete XX. Access is denied. Make tions:
sure the disk is not full or write-protected • If the virtual memory becomes unstable due
and that the file is not currently in use.”
to a shortage of RAM
Translation: When you attempt to delete • If the virtual memory becomes unstable due
a file (XX) that another program is using (for
to a shortage of free disk space
• If the virtual memory area is damaged by a
program
• If a program attempts to access data that is
being modified by another running program
The following is a list of examples of some
invalid page fault errors and possible
solutions.
Error Message: “This program has performed an illegal operation and will be
shut down. If the problem persists, contact the program vendor.”
Translation: Clicking Details on this error
message will show a possible explanation,
such as “X caused an invalid page fault in
module Y at Z,” where X is the name of the
program; Y is the name of the module and Z is
the address within the memory. After you
click OK, the program shuts down.
Solution: Identify when the error message first occurred. Also, determine if you
recently made changes to the computer; for
example, you installed software or changed
the hardware configuration. Clean booting
your computer can help you identify the
cause of the message. To Clean Boot, follow
these steps:
• Restart your computer. When the Starting
Windows dialog box is displayed, press
the F8 key and choose Step-By-Step Confirmation from the Startup menu.
• When you are prompted, load the following
items (if you are prompted to load any other
items, type n):
- Dblspace driver
- Himem.sys
- Ifshlp.sys
- Dblbuff.sys
• Load the Windows GUI (graphical user interface), and choose to load all Windows drivers.
Error Message: “XX caused an invalid
page fault in module HHCTRL.OCX at Y”
Translation: This behavior can occur
when you try to use the Help feature in programs and system tools that are included
with Win98, such as WordPad, Notepad, Net
Watcher, or Paint. The error usually happens
if you are using the Windows swap file and
there isn’t enough free space on the drive.
Solution: To resolve this behavior, uninstall programs you do not use and use the Disk
Cleanup tool by following these steps:
• Double-click My Computer, right-click the
hard disk you want to clean, click Properties, and then click Disk Cleanup.
PC Errors • 67
Windows 98
• Under Files To Delete, click to select all the
appropriate checkboxes for the items you
want to delete, click OK, click Yes, and then
click OK.
enough space on the drive for three damaged. If the problem does not occur, recopies of the file c:\windows\user.dat. peat the steps above, this time typing y at
This error should not cause any loss of the Process Your Startup Command File
information, but if space is not made (Autoexec.bat) prompt. Once you have idention the drive you may experience addi- fied the defective driver, contact the manufacWindows
tional problems.
turer of the driver or reinstall the driver from
Protection Error
Translation: You may receive this error the original disk.
When your computer attempts to load or when you start Windows. It can occur because
unload a VxD (virtual device driver), a there is not enough free space on the hard Error Message: “Initializing Device
Windows Protection error may occur. This disk, or a damaged driver is being loaded from IOS: Windows Protection Error”
error message lets you know that a device the Config.sys or Autoexec.bat file.
Translation: When you start your comdriver in your system has a
Solution: To resolve this puter (in either normal or Safe Mode) you may
problem. The VxD that is
issue, use the appropriate receive this message. This issue can occur if a
causing the problem will
method from the two follow- virus hooked the INT21h or INT13h chain
often be mentioned in the
ing methods.
before Windows is loaded, an unsafe device
message; however, in other
• Free additional space on driver is detected, or a protected-mode driver
cases you may not be able
the hard disk containing is missing or damaged in the Iosubsys file
to determine the VxD that
Windows
located in the C:/WINDOWS/SYSTEM
caused the error. In such
• Identify which drivers are /Iosubsys folder.
cases, you should be able to
causing the problem by folSolution: If you installed new software or
use clean boot troubleshootlowing these steps:
hardware, the installation process may have
ing to find the cause of the
-Restart the computer. As performed some action that may be the cause
error message. Windows
the computer starts, of your computer’s current problem. The same
Protection errors may result
press and hold down the situation may have occurred if you removed
Dr. Watson diagnoses your sysin any of the following situaCTRL key until you see outdated software or hardware. Try reintem and displays a “snapshot”
tions:
the Windows 98 Startup stalling the previous version of the software.
of your system, highlighting
• If a real-mode driver and a
Menu, and choose Step- Restart your computer and observe whether
errors and possible solutions.
protected-mode driver are
By-Step Confirmation.
the message is resolved. If the message is gone,
in conflict
- Type y at each prompt contact the manufacturer of the hardware to
• If the Registry is damaged
except for the Process Your Start- ensure that you are using the most recent BIOS
• If either the Win.com file or the Comup Device Drivers (Config.sys) and Pro- for your computer.
mand.com file are infected with a virus, or
cess Your Startup Command File
After you have eliminated the possibility of
if either of the files is damaged
(Autoexec.bat) prompts.
a faulty driver as a potential source of the
• If a protected-mode driver is loaded from
error, try to restart your computer in Safe
the System.ini file and the driver is already
If the error message no longer occurs, the Mode. You can start your computer in Safe
initialized
problem is with a driver being loaded from Mode by holding down the F8 key during
• If there is a physical I/O (input/output) Config.sys or Autoexec.bat. Repeat the steps startup and selecting Safe Mode from the
address conflict or a RAM address conflict
above, this time typing y at the Process Your menu. If you can restart your computer in Safe
• If there are incorrect CMOS (complementary Startup Device Drivers (Config.sys) prompt. Mode, clean boot your computer to identify
metal oxide semiconductor) settings for a If the problem returns, the Config.sys file is the cause of the error. If you restart your
built-in peripheral device such as cache settings, CPU timing, hard disks, and so on.
• If the Plug and Play feature of the BIOS
Most Common Error Message
(basic input/output system) on the comIn Windows 98, the following is an error that is seen more often than any other and is
puter is not working correctly
easily remedied.
• If the computer contains a malfunctioning
cache or malfunctioning memory
Error Message: “A filename cannot contain any of the following characters: \/:*?”<>|”
• If the motherboard on the computer is not
working properly
Translation:
You have tried to rename a file using an invalid character. For various
• If you installed Microsoft Office 97 and you
reasons, Windows doesn’t let you use certain characters in a filename
are using the Novell Client 32 software
(often because Windows uses those characters to denote something
else, such as a file path or command switch).
Below are some examples of Windows
Protection errors and their solutions.
Solution:
It’s simple—just rename the file without using characters that Windows
says you can’t. ■
Error Message: While backing up the
system registry, make sure you have
68 • PC Errors
Windows 98
computer and the same error message appears,
make a Bootlog.txt file and examine it to find
the cause of the error. Restart the computer as
before and click Step-By-Step Confirmation.
Press y and then ENTER, after each line is displayed. Restart your computer and click
Command Prompt Only.
Use the command prompt to view the
C:\Bootlog.txt file to identify the problem. At
the prompt, type edit bootlog.txt. Examine the
Bootlog.txt file for Initcomplete= entries. Each
entry must have a matching initcompletesuccess= entry on a successful start up. If the last
line in the Bootlog.txt file displays an
InitFailure or LoadFailure message for a driver, write down the drive’s name, exit the
Bootlog.txt file, press ALT-F, press x, click OK,
and then search for the driver. Some virtual
drivers are required for Windows to run properly. If one of the drivers in the Sidebar entitled Required Windows Drivers comes up as
LoadFailure, try to install Windows into a new
folder to determine whether it is compatible
with your current hardware configuration. If
the driver is not listed in the sidebar, try to
rename the driver and restart Windows. At the
prompt, type dir /s X, where X is the driver
name that shows the failure. Type cd path and
ren XX.old. (XX indicates that the driver name
is typed twice.) If you do not find any unsuccessful attempts in the Bootlog.txt file, or, if
after you rename a file you still receive the
error, try to locate an Ios.log file in the
Windows directory. The Ios.log file may help
you identify a virus or it may contain information describing why the protected-mode
disk driver could not load. If none of the preceding steps work, try to install Windows in
another folder.
General Protection Fault
A GPF (general protection fault) can indicate a problem with software or that you need
to update a device driver that you have
installed on your computer. If the Microsoft
Knowledge Base (support.microsoft.com) does
not contain an article to address the specific
GPF, the Dr. Watson tool included with
Windows can help you identify the cause of
the error message.
Dr. Watson is a diagnostic tool that takes a
snapshot of your computer whenever a fault
occurs. The program intercepts faults, identifies
the faulty software and offers a detailed description of the cause of the error. Starting Dr.
Watson will help you catch the error the next
time it occurs. After using one of the methods
Most Unusual Error Message
This error packs a double threat; you won’t see it often, and it is relatively serious.
Error Message: “A fatal exception 00 has occurred at X”
Translation:
A divide error has occurred. If the processor divides a number by zero
in a register, this error pops up. The register is the location where
calculations are performed. The error results because division by zero
is mathematically impossible. Therefore, your computer forgot how to
do basic math.
Solution:
Close the message and attempt to continue the operation. If this fails,
close the application and restart your machine. If the error persists,
shut down the computer, wait at least 30 seconds, and reboot. ■
listed below to start Dr. Watson, an icon will
appear in the system tray at the bottom right
of your screen. Double-clicking the icon will
gather information about the operating system
and a Dr. Watson dialog box is displayed.
If Dr. Watson detects a program fault it
will generate a snapshot of the environment.
Clicking the Details button in the message
will allow you to view the information that
is generated.
• Method 1:
1. Click Start, click Run, type Dr. Watson,
and click OK.
or
• Method 2:
1. Click Start, point to Programs and Accessories and click System Tools.
2. Click System Information, Tools, and Dr.
Watson on the menu.
Some examples of GPFs and their solutions
are listed below.
Error Message: “System Busy” appears
on a blue screen.
Translation: This error is often accompanied by information telling you that a GPF has
occurred. This almost always indicates that a
program, or even the entire system, has frozen.
Waiting for the system to “catch up” won’t
usually help.
Solution: The most common solution to
this problem is to reboot your system. Further
instances of this error should be handled in a
similar manner.
Error Message: “Rundll caused a general protection fault in krnl386.exe”
Translation: You may receive this error
message when you try to open the Network
tool in the Control Panel. This behavior can
occur if the Netdi.dll file or the Netos.dll file is
missing or damaged.
Solution: To resolve this issue, extract a
new copy of the Netdi.dll and Netos.dll file
from your original Windows disks or CDROM. To extract the necessary files from your
Windows disks, click Start and Run. Type sfc
and press ENTER. Once the menu appears,
click Extract One File From Installation Disk,
and in the Specify The System File You Would
Like To Restore box, type <drive>:
\windows<path>\<file> (where <drive> is the
drive where the Windows folder is installed
[generally C:], <path> is the destination of the
file that you want to extract, and <file> is the
file that you need). Click Start, browse to the
Restore From box, and locate the installation
files. The files are located on the hard disk in
the C:\Cabs folder by default. You can also
insert the Windows CD into your CD-ROM or
DVD-ROM drive and locate the files in the
folder named Win9x.
Error Message: “Explorer caused a
general protection fault in module
qtw32.cpl at X”
Translation: You may receive this error
message when you open the Control Panel if
one or more Apple QuickTime for Windows
files is missing or damaged.
Solution: Remove QuickTime for Windows.
First, restart the computer. Press and hold the F8
key after your computer completes the POST
(Power On Self Test) and choose Safe Mode
Command Prompt Only from the Startup menu.
At the prompt, type the following commands,
pressing ENTER after each command:
cd\windows\system
ren qtw16.cpl qtw16.xxx
PC Errors • 69
Windows 98
ren qt32.cpl qtw32.xxx
After restarting your computer normally,
click Start, point to Settings, click Control
Panel, and then double-click Add/Remove
Programs. On the Install/Uninstall tab, click
QuickTime for Windows, and then click
Add/Remove.
Translation: This error message is most
likely to occur after you use the Add New
Hardware tool in Control Panel if the
Drivers=mmsystem.dll line is missing from
the [boot] section of the System.ini file.
Solution: Use any text editor (such as
Notepad) to edit the System.ini file. Type drivers=mmsystem.dll into the [boot] section of
the file. Save and close the
System.ini file and restart
your computer.
Error
Message:
“Rundll32 caused a
general protection fault
Fatal Exception
in module Macw4.drv”
Translation: This error
There are many types
can occur if you are using
of Fatal Exception error
outdated or damaged drimessages. The BSOD (Blue
vers for a video adapter
Screen of Death) often acwhen you click the Security
companies these errors.
tab in the Internet Prop- Changing Virtual memory settings is These exception messages
erties dialog box or you not recommended, but it can help
are codes that are returned
increase system performance for
attempt to browse online.
by a program in the following situations:
Solution: To resolve this the experienced user.
behavior, obtain and install
•If access to an illegal inupdated video drivers from the manufacturer
struction has been encountered
of your video driver (most have these available • If invalid data or code has been accessed
on their Web sites). To work around the behav- • If the privilege level of an operation is
ior, reduce your video graphics acceleration setinvalid
ting. Click Start, point to Settings, click Control
Panel, and double-click System. Click the
The processor returns an exception to the
Performance tab, and then click Graphics. Move operating system when any of these situations
the Hardware Acceleration slider to one notch occurs, which in turn is handled as a Fatal
from the left (the Basic Accelerator Functions Exception error message. The exception is nonsetting), click OK, and then click Close. Click recoverable in many situations and you must
Yes when asked to restart your computer.
either shut down or restart the computer,
depending on the severity of the problem.
Error Message: “Rundll caused a genThough this list is not extensive, listed
eral protection fault in module MMSYS- below are examples of these exception errors
TEM.DLL at X.”
and their solutions.
Most Humorous Error Message
Though uncommon and quite easy to avoid, the phrasing of this error is amusing.
Fortunately, it can be quite easily replicated and remedied.
Error Message: “Windows cannot find “search”. You may have typed the name incorrectly in the Run dialog, or another open program cannot find a system file.
To search a file, click the Start button, and then click Search.”
Translation:
Typing Search into the Run dialog in the Start menu has told the
computer to look for a file named “search”. Because most computers
don’t contain a file named “search”, the system tries to find it and fails.
Solution:
Click OK and rephrase the parameters of your Run command. Or, if
you’re actually trying to launch the Search feature, click Start and Find. ■
70 • PC Errors
Error Message: “An exception 0E has
occurred at X”
Translation: A page fault has occurred. An
error is generated if a stack instruction tries
to use memory outside the stack. A stack is a
memory area reserved for programs to process
hardware events.
Solution: Close the message and try to continue your work. If that fails, close the software
and restart it. If all else fails, reboot the computer.
Error Message: “MPREXE.EXE caused
an exception 03h in module USER32.dll
at X.”
Translation: This can occur if a program is
running that prevents Windows from upgrading files on your computer.
Solution: Restart your computer using the
Startup Disk A Startup Disk is a tool that will
start your computer from the floppy drive if the
hard drive will not start. Create a Startup Disk
by inserting a floppy disk into the floppy drive,
click Start, Settings, Control Panel, and then
Add/Remove Programs. Click the Startup Disk
tab and click the Create Disk button. Once
you’ve made the disk, restart your computer
with the disk in the floppy drive. On the
Startup menu, choose the correct CD-ROM support for your computer and type the following
commands (where <windows> is the name of
your Windows folder and <ramdrive> is the virtual drive created by the boot disk (probably e:
or f:), pressing ENTER after each command:
C:
cd <windows> \system
ren user32.dll user32.dlx
ren gdi32.dll user32.dlx
ren winmm.dll winmm.dlx
<ramdrive>\ext.exe
Then, type <CD-ROM drive>:\win98,
where <CD-ROM drive> is the drive letter
assigned to your CD-ROM drive. Type
user32.dll gdi32.dll winmm.dll, followed by
<drive>:\<windows>\system, and ENTER
after each line (where <drive> is the drive on
which Windows is installed and <windows> is
the folder containing Windows). If the information shown is correct, type y. Type cd and
press ENTER and then type ren Cmapieng.vxt
Cmapieng.vxx and press ENTER. Restart your
computer and run the defragmentation application (Start, Programs, System Tools, and
Disk Defragmenter). When Ext.exe (the final
command you typed) has finished extracting
the files, remove the Startup disk and restart
your computer. Press and hold down the
Windows 98
F8 key as your computer restarts. On the
Windows Startup menu, select Safe Mode.
After Windows starts, click Start, point to
Settings, click Control Panel, and then doubleclick Add/Remove Programs. Click any utility that you have installed on the
Install/Uninstall tab and then click
Add/Remove until any utilities you have
installed are removed. On the toolbar click
Start, point to Settings, click Taskbar And
Start menu, Start Menu Programs tab, and
then click Remove. Double-click Startup, click
the appropriate entry, and click Remove,
Close, and OK, and then restart your computer. In Microsoft System Information, on the
Tools menu, click System File and Settings; on
the Advanced tab, click Restore Defaults; then
click OK. Restart your computer.
Error Message: “A fatal exception 06 has
occurred at X.”
Translation: This behavior can occur if an
earlier version of antivirus software is being
loaded from the Autoexect.bat in Win98 or
Win98SE Setup.
Solution: Disable the antivirus software by
restarting your computer, holding down the
F8 key until the Windows 98 Startup menu
appears and choose Command Prompt only.
At the command prompt, type edit c:\autoexec.bat and press ENTER. Type rem at the
beginning of the line containing the name of
your antivirus software. Save and close the
file. Restart your computer.
Kernel32.dll
The Kernel32.dll file is a 32-bit DLL
(dynamic link library) file that is found in
Windows 95/98/WinMe. The Kernel32.dll
file handles memory management, I/O operations, and interrupts. Other programs will not
take over the memory space occupied by the
Kernel32.dll file because it is a protected
space. You may receive an IPF (invalid page
fault) error message, which occurs when a
program tries to access the Kernel32.dll protected memory space. The error message can
be caused by one particular program or by
multiple files and programs. If the problem
results from running one program, the
responsible program must be replaced. If,
however, multiple programs cause the problem, the damage is likely caused by damaged
hardware. Clean-booting the computer can
help you identify the particular third-party
memory-resident software, but programs that
are not memory-resident can also cause IPF
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “Cannot open file.”
Translation:
This error occurs when you open a file by clicking on the filename on
the list at the lower part of the File menu and there is not enough
memory available in Windows. It’s not terribly helpful that the error is
ambiguous and does not describe why it cannot open the file or how to
correct it. A different message can even be displayed, depending on
how you attempted to open the file.
Solution:
There may not be enough memory available to Windows. You may
need to close down programs to give Windows enough memory to run
the program or open the file. Another possibility might be to configure
Windows to use more virtual memory. To change virtual memory
settings, click Start, Settings, Control Panel, and System; go to the
Performance tab and click Virtual Memory. It is recommended that you
let Windows decide how much to use, but you can change the settings
as necessary to eliminate the error. ■
error messages. Kernel32.dll errors can be
generated by any number of conditions,
including a damaged Registry, incorrect hardware drivers, a damaged or missing TEMP
folder, a CPU that is running too hot, low
disk space, a damaged Kernel32.dll file, and
more. Below is a list of Kernel32.dll errors
and their solutions.
Error Message: “Mplayer2 caused an
invalid page fault in module
kernel32.dll”
Translation: An incompatible display
adapter or display adapter driver causes
this error when you try to play a movie in
Microsoft’s Windows Media Player. Your
computer may display a black screen, instead of active video content, or simply
not respond.
Solution: You must obtain an updated
display driver by contacting your hardware
manufacturer. If an updated display adapter
does not resolve the behavior, Windows
sending information to your video card
faster than the card can process it may cause
the error. This behavior mainly occurs with
older video cards and can be resolved by
turning down the hardware acceleration in
Windows.
To turn down the hardware acceleration,
double-click System in the Control Panel.
Click the Performance tab and then Graphics.
Select the proper setting out of the four possible Hardware Acceleration settings: Full,
Most, Basic, and None. Click OK and restart
your computer. Repeat the procedure as nec-
essary, selecting different settings if you continue to experience the problem.
Error Message: “SmartHeap Library.
MEM_BAD_POINTER. This program
has performed an illegal operation and
will shut down. If the problem persists,
contact the program vendor. X caused
an invalid page fault in module
Kernel32.dll at X.”
Translation: If you:
• Have Symantec’s Norton Navigator for
Win95, version 1.0b, installed and running
• Have the File Popups and/or Drive Popups options in the Norton Navigator
Control center enabled
• Display any dialog box as a list of files
in one of the programs included with
Microsoft Office 97
• Right-click any file in the dialog box
Solution: To prevent this problem from
occurring, you must download and install a
patch for Norton Navigator from Symantec’s
Web site. The update will be applied the next
time you restart your computer. If you cannot
download and install the patch, you can prevent
the problem by turning off the File Popups,
Folder Popups and Drive Popups options in
Norton Navigator by clicking the Start menu,
pointing to Programs, Norton Navigator and
Norton Navigator Control Center, Norton
Explorer Extensions. Click to clear the appropriate options and click Apply and OK. RS
by David Miller
PC Errors • 71
Windows 98
Windows 98
Networking &
Online Errors
Stay Online & Productive
Networking-Related Errors
Networking errors can leave you without
any method for archiving your data to a
remote server. If a crash occurs on your own
computer, you run the risk of losing all your
important files. And, you may not be able to
access important information stored offline,
so you’ll have to rely solely on local data. In
some ways networking errors are less critical,
though, than a desktop problem because you
can sometimes keep working and resolve the
issue later. And you can fix most networking
errors just by enabling an option either on the
server or on your own computer.
It’s also reassuring to know that, at least in an
office setting, you can usually contact the tech
support department to ask about network problems, but trying to have someone come out to
your desk is sometimes much more difficult.
Networking errors will also occasionally go away
all on their own as network resources become
available, servers automatically reboot themselves, or a password cache clears itself as part of
routine system maintenance chores. Of course
that’s not helpful when you really need to download the latest Excel spreadsheet for your boss,
so it’s good to know that you can address some
common networking problems with these fixes.
Error Message: “Invalid local device.”
Translation: The computer does not have
any more drive letters available for network
mapping.
Solution: There are three quick and easy
solutions to this problem. The quickest solution is to just map a drive letter, which is within the first few letters of the alphabet, such as F
or G. (By mapping a drive letter, you’re making a network drive accessible in Windows 98.)
If you have run out of drive letters, you’ll need
to edit the Config.sys file, so use the DOS command line. Click Start and Run. Type cmd and
72 • PC Errors
press ENTER. Now
type c:, press ENTER,
type cd\, and press ENTER
to make sure you are in
the root C: drive. Type edit
config.sys and press ENTER.
In the editor look for the LASTDRIVE= statement. The first solution is to just
remove the entry altogether. The second solution is to make the drive letter Z so that you
can map drives for the entire alphabet, if need
be. Now, exit the command prompt and reboot
your computer. You should be able to map a
network drive.
Error Message: “The computer you have
dialed in to has denied access because
the username and/or password is invalid
on the domain.”
Translation: The username or password,
domain name, or preferred server name are
incorrect when you try to use dial-up networking. Or the password cache files on the network
server are damaged. In some cases the error
occurs when a password is not required at all.
Solution: If the network server does not
require a password, just leave that field blank.
Otherwise you’ll need to restart the computer
and enter Safe Mode. Press the CTRL key
as Win98 starts up. Choose the Safe Mode
Command Prompt Only option and press
ENTER. Go to your Windows directory and
type ren rna.pwl rna.xxx and press ENTER.
This resets the dial-up networking password.
Error Message: “There was a problem
printing to the printer due to an unknown system error.”
Translation: On a network print server,
the print spool folder (which is used to hold
the print files sent from client computers on a
network) contains too many temporary files.
Solution: In a network environment where
you are printing to a computer running Win98,
the print server has to manage a large number
of temporary files. If congested, the computer
won’t let you print until you remove some of
the files. To do so you’ll need access to the
computer running the print server. Start
Windows Explorer and browse to the C:
\WINDOWS\SPOOL\PRINTERS directory.
Delete all of the files and reboot the computer.
Error Message: “XX is not accessible.
Unknown Error 2114”
Translation: Occurs when Client for
Microsoft Networks is installed without the
file and print sharing component.
Solution: Click Start, Settings, and Control
Panel. Double-click the Network icon. Click
Add, Service, and Add. Click File And Printer
Sharing For Microsoft and click OK. Click OK
again and restart your computer.
Error Message: “The driver or network
connection that the shortcut ‘target.lnk’
refers to is unavailable. Make sure that
the disk is properly inserted or the network resource is available, and then try
again.”
Translation: Occurs when you try to connect to the Shared Documents directory in the
My Documents folder on a computer running
Windows Me.
Solution: Copy the files from Shared
Documents to the C:\DOCUMENTS folder.
Windows 98
Another option is that you can run the Home
Networking Wizard on the WinMe computer
and select the option to share both the Documents and My Documents folders.
Error Message: “The network is not
accessible. Unable to find the device on
the network.”
Translation: There is no computer on the
network configured as the browse master.
The browse master maintains a list of all the
attached computers, including all of their network settings.
Solution: Make one of the computers on
the network the browse master. On that computer click Start, Settings, and Control Panel.
Double-click Network and select File And
Printer Sharing For Microsoft Networks on
the configuration tab. Click Properties. In
the Property box, click Browse Master, select
Enabled in the Value box, and click OK twice
as prompted. Click Yes when you are prompted to reboot the computer. Incidentally you
need to have File And Printer Sharing installed
on the computer for this solution to work.
Error Message: “Error 629: You have
been disconnected from the computer
you dialed. Double-click the connection
to try again.”
Translation: Occurs if the computer you
are dialing with dial-up networking is using
pass-through authentication, which is a
method for approving passwords sent from a
client computer.
Solution: If you’re not concerned about
high-level security when you connect to a
remote server, you can disable pass-through
authentication. Double-click the My Computer
icon on the Desktop and double-click the DialUp Networking icon. Go to the Connections
menu and click Dial-Up Server. Look for the
Server Type button and clear the checkbox
next to Require Encrypted Password.
Online-Related Errors
When you really need to get online to check
email or research a topic on Google.com, an
Internet-related error can be a lot more frustrating. Of course, next to a General Protection
Fault or an error that appears when you start
the computer, Web errors can seem trivial.
Fortunately many Internet errors can be
resolved quickly and without a lot of troubleshooting, as long as you understand why
the error is occurring and try a few workarounds to fix the problem.
It’s important to know that, in some cases,
the problem is occurring on the “other end” of
the connection. If too many users try to access
a Web site (such as CNN.com after a big news
event), you may receive errors that will not
occur later in the day. In other cases problems
can occur due to flawed HTML and ActiveX
programming, incompatibilities between your
browser and the Web server, or network congestion in general. One of the best tips for solving Internet-related problems is to go back to
the site later. Also, make sure you have the
latest version of Internet Explorer, available at
www.microsoft.com/ie.
Error Message: “Cannot open Internet
site…”
Translation: This error can occur if you are
using the wrong version of Winsock, which is
the system file used to establish connections
between networked computers.
Solution: Click Start, Settings, and
Control Panel. Double-click Network. Click
the Configuration tab, click TCP/IP, and
click Remove. Look for any other TCP/IP
(Transmission Control Protocol/Internet
Protocol) listings and remove those, too.
Click OK. Click OK again after you are
prompted to restart. When your computer
boots up again, go back to the Network control
panel. Now click Protocol, Add, and then click
Microsoft in the Manufacturers box, click
TCP/IP, and click OK. If you are prompted
about a version conflict, click No when
prompted to keep the newer version of the
file. Now restart the computer again.
Error Message: “The Microsoft Dial Up
adapter is in use or not responding
properly. Disconnect other connections
and then try again. If this problem persists, shut down and restart your computer. Error 645.”
Translation: This error occurs if you are
trying to use VPN (virtual private networking;
the industrial strength end-to-end security
protocol) to log into a corporate server using
PPTP (Point-To-Point Tunneling Protocol) and
establish a secure connection.
Solution: Click Start, Settings, and Control
Panel. Double-click Add/Remove Programs.
Click the Windows Setup tab, click the Communications tab, and Details. Clear the Virtual Private Networking checkbox, click OK,
Most Difficult Error Message To Fix
Error Message: “Error 745: An essential file is missing. Re-install Dial-Up Networking.”
Translation:
A DLL (dynamic-link library) file is missing or damaged.
Solution:
This error can occur if Dial-Up Networking is not installed correctly. The
best solution is to reinstall Dial-Up Networking. To remove Dial-Up
Networking, go to Start, Settings, and Control Panel. Double-click
Add/Remove Programs. Click the Windows Setup tab and click
Communications. Click Details. Click the Dial-Up Networking checkbox
and click OK at each dialog box. When prompted, restart your
computer. Now you’ll also need to take a trip to the Registry and
remove the following line:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CURRENTCONTROLSET\SERVICES\REMOTEACCESS\AUTHENTICATION\SMM_FILES\PPP
Editing the Registry is a complicated task in Windows 98, mostly
because you can accidentally delete important files and make Windows
unbootable. We recommend contacting Microsoft Technical Support at
support.microsoft.com.
However, even if you reinstall Dial-Up Networking and edit the
Registry, another lingering problem can cause the DLL errors. For
example, if you are using CompuServe’s WOW! Software (which was
discontinued in 1997), you should remove it, as the software can cause
DLL and Registry errors. ■
PC Errors • 73
Windows 98
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “Internet Explorer Script Error: An error has occurred in the script on
this page” or “Microsoft Internet Explorer: Internet Explorer cannot
open the Internet site XX: Invalid syntax.”
Translation:
Windows has found an invalid default code page, which is due to
Internet Explorer using a foreign language font character set.
Solution:
Anytime an error message uses the phrase “invalid syntax,” you might
wonder what’s really happening. In this case the message is confusing
because it doesn’t say anything about fonts, character sets, or foreign
languages and seems to be saying the problem is with the Web site
you are visiting. Before you send off an email to the site owner
complaining about compatibility problems, you should know that,
somehow, the wrong character set is enabled on your computer. You’ll
want to use the Western character set. Go to Start, Settings, Control
Panel, and double-click Internet. On the General tab, click Fonts,
choose Western under Character Sets, click Set As Default, click OK,
and then click OK again. ■
and then Apply. Click the
Communications tab again
and, this time, enable the
VPN checkbox. Click OK.
Modems. Select your modem and click Properties. Click the Connections tab and look for
the Wait For Dial Tone Before Dialing option.
Disable it, click OK twice, and try dialing out
again. In some cases you may need to reboot
the computer.
Disable the Wait For Dial Tone Before Dialing option when you want to use a calling card
for Dial-Up Networking.
Error Message: “Error 630: The computer is not receiving a response from
the modem. Check that the modem is
plugged in, and if necessary, turn the
modem off, and turn it back on.”
Translation: Error 630 is an indication that
you are using the ATI 600 Series fax modem,
which does not work with Win98. Another
symptom of this problem is that the error message will appear and then your computer will
stop working; then you’ll have to reboot.
Solution: You’ll need to obtain the latest
driver for the ATI 600 Series fax modem.
However, the problem may still occur, in
which case you’ll probably need to remove the
modem card altogether and install a compatible fax modem.
Translation: Occurs
when you are using a calling
card and you have enabled
the Wait For Dial Tone
Before Dialing option. Also
Error Message: “The
can occur if the phone line is Error Message: “Port Already Open”
Page cannot be disnot plugged in securely to
Translation: This error can occur after you
played.”
your modem or the phone upgrade from Windows 95 or WinMe due to a
Translation: The comline is not working.
conflict between a COM (communications)
puter you are trying to
Solution: Check the port and a FIR (fast infrared) port.
attach to is running ICS
connection between the
Solution: Click Start, Settings, and Control
(Internet Connection Shar- Make sure the Use A Proxy Server
phone line and the modem Panel. Double-click System and select the
ing) and has rebooted, or the option is not checked.
to make sure the connection Device Manager tab. Double-click the Infrared
computer you are dialing
is secure. You can also test a Devices tab to expand it, click the first infrared
into is using a proxy server (used for blocking regular phone to make sure there is an active device, click Properties, and click Disable In
unapproved access).
phone line in your home. Otherwise, click This Hardware Profile. Repeat this process for
Solution: The simplest solution: Just wait Start, Settings, Control Panel, and double-click any other infrared port. Now double-click the
for the computer that is running ICS to finish
rebooting completely. If that doesn’t work,
check to see if the computer that’s running ICS
Most Common Error Message
is running a proxy server. You’ll need access
Error Message: “Error Starting Program: A required .DLL file, SUPERSUB.DLL was
to that computer. Click Start, Settings, and
not found.”
Control Panel. Double-click the Internet icon.
Click the Connections tab, LAN Settings, and
Translation:
This error can occur when you try to install America Online if you
see if the Use A Proxy Server box is checked.
previously tried to install the online service and then canceled the install.
If it is, click to uncheck that option. If you are
still unable to connect, on your computer,
Solution:
Millions of users install and uninstall AOL every day, especially those
click Start, Run, type winipcfg, and press
who want to try out the service for the free trial period. That’s what
ENTER. Click OK and Release All. Click
makes this error so common, and fortunately it’s also easy to fix. You
Renew All and OK.
just need to install a more recent version of the program, or revisit the
original installation program, which is on your Windows 98 Setup CD at
Error Message: “There is no dialtone.
WIN98\OLS\AOL\AOL40US. ■
Make sure your modem is connected to
the phone line.”
74 • PC Errors
Windows 98
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Runtime Error 216 at XX”
Translation:
Solution:
This error occurs when you try to start Internet Explorer and your
computer is infected with the rare SubSeven Trojan virus. The error
can also occur when you try to start other Windows programs, but it
can more commonly occur with IE, but only if you are running Windows 98.
The solution is to obtain an antivirus program, such as Symantec’s
Norton AntiVirus, then run the virus-checking scan. The problem does
not appear to be serious and won’t cause serious damage to your PC.
As with any virus, however, it’s important to address the problem,
especially if you have other viruses infecting your computer. ■
Network Adapters branch to expand it. Look
for an Infrared port, click it, and click Remove.
Click OK.
Error Message: “Could not initialize
port”
Translation: This error occurs for one
of three reasons. One, the Allow Caller Access option could be enabled for Dial-Up
Networking. Two, you could have Microsoft
Fax services set up to answer all incoming
calls. Third, it could be a hardware IRQ
(Interrupt Request Line) conflict, which can
occur when a hardware driver is loaded incorrectly into system memory.
Solution: To disable Allow Caller Access,
first double-click the My Computer icon.
Double-click Dial-Up Networking. On the
Connections menu, click Dial-Up Server. Click
the No Caller Access icon and click OK. If you
are using Microsoft Fax for incoming calls, first
double-click the Microsoft Fax Status icon in
the Taskbar. If you don’t see the status icon
in the Taskbar, double-click the Inbox icon on
the Desktop and select the Fax option when
prompted. On the Options menu, select Modem Properties, and then select the Don’t
Answer option under the Answer Mode section. If neither of these fixes solves the problem, you may have an IRQ conflict. To check,
click Start, Settings, and Control Panel.
Double-click System and select the Device
Manager tab. Look for any red exclamation
marks that indicate an IRQ conflict. Remove
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: “The page cannot be displayed. The page you’re looking for might
have been removed or had its name changed.”
Translation:
The Windows Media Player is not installed on your computer, so when
you visit the windowsmedia.com Web site, Internet Explorer refuses to
display the page and displays the rather verbose error message. This
error only occurs with Windows 98 when you are using IE5.01.
It’s great that Microsoft provides so much information in their error
messages, but this particular error is just plain wrong. The page has not
been removed or had its name changed. Funny, too, because it seems
as though the left hand (in this case, IE) doesn’t know what the right
hand (Windows Media Player) is doing, even though both tools come
from the same company.
Solution:
The fix is to install the Windows Media Player component in IE. Click
Start, Settings, Control Panel, and Add/Remove Programs. On the
Install/Uninstall tab, look for Internet Explorer 5 and Internet Tools, and
click Add/Remove. Click Add A Component, click OK, and then go
through the next few prompts to install Windows Media Player. ■
the driver as needed and reboot. If you still
receive the “Could not initialize port” error
when you try to use Dial-Up Networking, you
may need to contact the hardware vendors for
any devices that are causing IRQ conflicts.
Error Message: “Error 629: You have
been disconnected from the computer
you dialed. Double-click the connection
to try again.”
Translation: You are trying to use the
128-bit security update for Win98 Dial-Up
Networking with Win98 Second Edition. The
original 128-bit security update only works
with Win98.
Solution: You’ll need to download and
install the 128-bit security update for Win98SE,
available at www.microsoft.com/windows
/ie/download/128bit/intro.htm.
Error Message: “No ISDN devices were
found. Please install an ISDN device and
run the configuration wizard again.”
Translation: You are attempting to install
an external ISDN (Integrated Services Digital
Network) device using the Modems control
panel for broadband access, but the wizard
works with internal ISDN cards only.
Solution: You’ll need to contact the ISDN
device manufacturer directly and ask them
about the installation process for Win98. Most
likely, they will direct you to a support Web
site with a driver and installation program that
you can use, which will bypass the built-in
Win98 installation process.
Error Message: “An exception OE has
occurred at XX called from XX in XX”
Translation: You are attempting to send a
large data file over a slow modem connection.
The error appears on a blue screen.
Solution: You’ll need to reduce the maximum packet size that your modem can support. To do that, click Start, Settings, and
Control Panel. Double-click Network. On the
Configuration tab, select Dial-Up Adapter and
click Properties. Click the Advanced tab and
look for the IP Packet Size option. Click one of
the following options:
Automatic: Programmatic control; this is the
default setting
Large: 1,500
Medium: 1,000
Small: 576 RS
by John Brandon
PC Errors • 75
Windows 2000
Windows 2000
Installation & Setup
Solutions To Get You Off To The Right Start
indows errors. They’re
roughly as fun as a root
canal. In fact, some would
argue in favor of the root
canal. Windows errors can
be confusing and obscure, and, all too common, happen all at once. They can also be
galling and frustrating.
But what’s even worse are the Windows
errors you get before you’ve even installed
Windows, that is, errors during Windows Setup
and installation. And yet they abound. A quick
search at Microsoft’s Help And Support (sup
port.microsoft.com) gives dozens of results for
the search terms “Setup” and “error.”
So what’s a user to do? Below, we’ve gathered some of the most common, most confusing, most useful, and most outrageous errors
messages in Windows 2000 Setup, then rendered them in plain English with simple (and
sometimes not so simple) solutions to each.
W
General
Error Message: “This program cannot
be run in MS-DOS mode”
Translation: You could see this message
when you start Setup.exe from the Win2000
CD-ROM after booting from a floppy diskette
76 • PC Errors
or hard drive with CD-ROM support. It occurs
because the program Setup.exe is a Windows
program and can’t be run from an MS-DOS
command prompt.
Solution: As a workaround, boot to an
existing Windows installation and rerun Setup.
If there’s no existing Windows installation on
your computer, start the Win2000 installation
by booting to the Win2000 CD-ROM or use the
Setup boot diskettes created by Makeboot.exe.
To create a set of Setup boot diskettes using
Makeboot.exe, insert the Win2000 CD-ROM
into your computer’s CD-ROM drive, and then
click Start and Run. In the Open box, type
X:\bootdisk\makeboot a:, where X is the letter of your CD-ROM drive, and press ENTER.
Follow the instructions when prompted to create four Setup boot diskettes.
Error Message: “Setup cannot create the
folder \WINNT\TEMP”
Translation: When you upgrade your
Windows 95/98/NT machine to Win2000, you
may receive this message if a file named Temp
is in the WINNT folder.
Solution: Fixing the problem depends on the
type of file system you have. If you have a FAT
32 file system, start your computer to a command prompt. (In Win98, restart your computer,
press and hold the CTRL key until your hard
drive is inactive for 10 seconds, and press SHIFTF5. In Win95, restart your computer, press and
hold F8 until your hard drive is inactive for 10
seconds, and press SHIFT-F5. Note that you may
hear a number of beeps when you press F8, indicating a keyboard error. It’s safe to ignore them,
although you may have to tap the F8 key if the
beeping continues after you’ve released the key.
In WinNT, restart your machine with a
Win95/98 (Win9x) Startup diskette and choose
Command Prompt Only at the Startup menu.)
Once you’ve reached the command prompt,
type cd \ and press ENTER. Now type cd Winnt
and press ENTER again. Type ren temp tempold
and press ENTER to rename the Temp file.
If you’re using an NTFS file system, start
your computer with the Win2000 CD-ROM.
(As an alternative, you can also use the floppies you made with the Makeboot.exe tool on
the Win2000 CD-ROM.) When you’re prompted to repair or continue Setup, choose Repair
and Recovery Console. Switch to the WINNT
folder and rename the Temp file to Tempold.
Type exit, and Setup will continue after your
computer reboots.
Error Message: “Setup is unable to
locate temporary files”
Translation: You may see this error during
Win2000 Setup because the hard disk on which
Winnt.exe or Winnt32.exe placed temporary
files is not currently visible to Win2000.
Solution: The resolution to the problem is
tedious. You’ll need to back up the hard drive,
repartition the hard drive, restore the backup,
and reinstall Win2000. To back up the hard
drive you’ll need a good, third-party backup
solution, or you can back up your data online.
(A quick search on Google will yield dozens of
sites that let you do this for a small fee.) To
repartition the hard disk, use a third-party
drive partitioner such as Symantec’s PartitionMagic. A partition is a logical division of
a physical drive, such as your hard drive.
Creating partitions can be complex, so unless
Windows 2000
you’re an expert, it’s best to resort to thirdparty software that walks you through it.
Error Message: Setup fails to copy random files during text-mode Setup.
Translation: During text-mode Setup, you
may receive one of several messages stating that
a file can’t be copied because it’s damaged or
missing. This can occur because the Windows
CD-ROM is damaged or dirty, PC133 SDRAM is
being used in a computer that requires PC100
SDRAM, the CD-ROM drive is malfunctioning,
or the RAM is faulty or malfunctioning.
Solution: To resolve the problem, first
clean your CD-ROM. Be sure to use a soft, lintfree cloth and not a paper towel, which can
damage the surface of the disc, and wipe in a
linear motion outwards from the center of the
disc. (Avoid using a circular motion.) Once
you’ve cleaned the CD-ROM, run Setup again
and see if this resolves the problem.
If this fails to resolve the problem, check
your computer’s RAM. Make sure the RAM on
your motherboard is the correct type of RAM
suggested by the motherboard’s manufacturer.
(You’ll need to consult the documentation that
came with your system to find out what kind
of RAM your computer needs, and then carefully open the unit to expose the motherboard
and check to see if that type of RAM is in fact
being used.) Also check the CD-ROM drive to
be sure it’s functioning properly. (You can do
this by playing a music CD or trying to run
another setup program to see if it works.) If
you have another CD-ROM drive available,
consider using it to install Win2000.
Error Message: The keyboard does not
work properly during text-mode Setup.
Translation: Sometimes during the textmode portion of Setup, your keyboard may not
function correctly, and you may not be able to
use it to create, delete, or format a partition.
Solution: This can happen if your keyboard uses a layout that’s not the standard US101 layout, such as Dvorak. While the Dvorak
layout is loaded during the text-mode portion
of Setup, it’s ignored until the GUI (graphical
user interface)-mode portion begins. There’s
no way to resolve the problem except to switch
keyboards or randomly press keys until you
find the key that maps to the US-101 key
you’re looking for. But beware: You could
inadvertently delete a partition.
Error Message: “Cannot modify the drive
letter of your system or boot volume”
Translation: You may see this error message when you attempt to change the drive letter of the system volume (the drive on which
Win2000 is installed, for example) after Setup
has finished.
Solution: The drive letter for the system
volume is hard-coded in the Windows
Registry and cannot be altered. In Win2000,
you can reassign the drive letters linked to
other drives, but not the system volume, using
the Disk Management Console.
Note that when you’re installing Win2000
from Winnt32.exe, you can specify the location
of the folder in which Windows should be
installed by choosing Advanced Options during
the text-mode portion of Setup. This feature is
only available when performing a clean installation of Windows, that is, when installing
Win2000 on a blank hard drive or installing it in
a folder other than the folder in which an existing version of Windows is installed.
Error Message: Setup reserves disk
space for upgrading to a dynamic disk.
Translation: On occasion during Setup, you
may choose to create a partition that uses all the
remaining space on your hard drive, only to find
that Setup does not let you use the maximum
space available. For example, if you elect to create a 5,028MB partition on a hard drive that has
only 5,028MB available, Setup will create a partition that’s only 5,027MB or less in size.
Solution: Why does it create the partition of
that size? Because Setup reserves space at the
end of the disk in case you later want to upgrade
the disk to a dynamic disk. Dynamic disk information is stored at the end of the disk, and the
least amount that can be reserved is one cylinder, or 1MB, whichever is greater. (Depending
on your drive geometry and translation, a cylinder can be up to 8MB in size.)
Windows Registry
(NOTE: Solutions to errors in this section
involve changes to the Registry. The Registry is a
complex database of settings and other Windows
configurations. Even the smallest change to the
Registry, if performed incorrectly, can make your
system malfunction. You should open, view, and
edit the Registry only if you know how to back it up
and restore it to its original state before you attempt
to change it in any way.)
Error Message: “Windows 2000 Setup
could not detect the version of Windows
you are currently running. Setup cannot
continue.”
Translation: You may receive this error
message when you attempt to run Win2000
Setup from within Win9x/NT. It occurs when
your version of Win9x/NT does not contain a
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: Setup allows invalid characters in the computer name.
Translation:
In the GUI-mode portion of Setup, you’re allowed to
enter nonstandard characters such as [, +, *, and ?
when prompted to enter the computer name. When you
do, Setup displays a warning about using a non-DNS
(domain name system) name, but still allows you to continue. Once Setup is finished, the error log (Setuperr.log)
shows the computer name has nonstandard characters.
Solution:
Confusing? Setup tells you certain characters are invalid
and then lets you use them anyway. Luckily, the solution is simple. Just avoid any use of the following characters while naming
your computer, and you’ll be fine: / \ [ ] “ : ; | < > + = , ? *. ■
PC Errors • 77
Windows 2000
Product ID from Microsoft (in which case your
software may be a beta version or an illegal
copy and should be replaced with a fully
licensed copy).
Solution: To fix the problem, you’ll need
to edit the Registry to add a Product ID. To
proceed, click Start, Run, and type regedit in
the Open box; press ENTER. In Win9x, locate the following Registry key HKEY_
LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/MICROS
OFT/WINDOWS/CURRENTVERSION/PRO
DUCTID and add the number of your
Product ID as the value of the Registry’s key.
(If you don’t have a Product ID, you’ll need
to contact Microsoft or purchase a fullylicensed version of the software in question
to obtain one.)
In WinNT, locate the following Registry
key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFT
WARE/MICROSOFT/WINDOWSNT/CUR
RENTVERSION/PRODUCTID and add the
number of your Product ID as the value of
the Registry’s key.
Error Message: “Setup encountered an
unexpected critical error . . . not all settings were transferred . . .”
Translation: You may encounter this error
message while trying to upgrade a Win9x
machine to Win2000. Specifically, you may see
it while another message, “Setup is migrating
Windows 95 settings to Windows NT,” is
being displayed. It occurs when the following
Registry key is damaged or missing:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/SOFTWARE/MI
CROSOFT/WINDOWS KEY.
Solution: If the key is damaged or missing, the Registry cannot be reloaded during
the upgrade and the error message will display. Microsoft claims this behavior is by
design and that no fix is currently available
for it.
Hardware
Error Message: Access to the CD-ROM
is lost at the start of GUI-mode Setup.
Translation: When you’re
installing Win2000, you might
lose access to your CD-ROM
Most Hilarious Error Message
drive after the initial portion of
Error Message: Setup thinks you’re in Baghdad
the Setup (known as text-mode
(or Kuwait, or Riyadh . . .)
Setup) completes and the second
portion of the Setup (known as
Translation:
Take heart if Setup tells you it can’t
GUI-mode) begins. If this is the
determine your time zone properly.
case you might see one of several
Chances are you had your time
long error messages, including
zone set to Baghdad, Kuwait,
the following:
Riyadh, or another time zone that
“The file Nt5inf.cat on
seems to bamboozle Win2000 (for
Windows 2000 Product CDreasons known almost entirely to
ROM is needed.
Microsoft, of course). The problem?
Type the path where the file is
This time zone matches more than
located, and then click OK.
one Win2000 time zone, and techCopy file from:
nically, Windows can’t determine if
GLOBALROOT\DEVICE
you’re actually in Nairobi or Kuwait.
\CDROM0\I386”
If you click Cancel, you receive
Solution:
So what’s a world traveler to do?
the following error message:
Simply set the time zone manually
“FATAL ERROR:
and you’ll be fine. ■
An error has been encountered that prevents Setup from
continuing.
Setup failed to install product
catalogs. This is a fatal error. The
Setup log files should contain
more information.
Press OK to view the Setup
log file.”
If you click OK to view the
Setup log, you’ll find that it contains this error message:
78 • PC Errors
“Error: The GLOBALROOT\DEVICE
\CDROM0\I386\NT5INF.CAT catalog file
could not be found. The error code is 1. This is a
fatal error.
Incorrect function.”
Why all the trouble? These problems occur
when Win2000’s GUI-mode Setup looks for
but can’t find the CD-ROM drive because of
outdated firmware on the drive itself
(firmware is software embedded in hardware)
or simply because the drive is not compatible
with Win2000.
Solution: To resolve the problem, contact
the manufacturer of the drive to see if there’s a
firmware update; most often, you can download updates from the manufacturer’s Web
site. If no update is available, you may need to
replace the unit with one that’s compatible
with Win2000.
There is, however, a workaround. You can
use a Win9x Startup disk with CD-ROM support to copy the I386 folder from the Win2000
CD-ROM to your hard drive. Then, run
Winnt.exe from the copied folder to install
Win2000.
Error Message: “Setup cannot access
this disk.”
Translation: You may receive this error
message during a Win2000 installation immediately after you accept the license agreement. It
occurs when the disk controller can’t effectively
communicate with the hard drive for a number
of complex reasons, among them a damaged
hard drive or controller, an incorrect driver for
the disk controller, a bad termination on the
SCSI (Small Computer System Interface) chain,
or a hardware compatibility issue with
Win2000. But of all these, the most common
cause of the problem is simply a bad hard drive.
Solution: To resolve the issue, make sure
the hard drive, the disk controller, and any
related hardware all function correctly and are
all Win2000-compatible.
Error Message: The computer hangs
while Setup is inspecting the hardware
configuration.
Translation: During a Win2000 installation
the computer may stop responding when it displays the following message: “Setup is inspecting your computer’s hardware configuration.”
Solution: This problem can happen if a
disk controller is configured to support
removable media (such as Zip disks) as fixed
drives. To fix the problem, turn off any feature
that treats removable disks as fixed disks in
Windows 2000
the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System). How?
It differs from machine to machine. On some
computers, you access the BIOS by pressing a
certain key combination as the machine boots
up. Look for this information on the screen
during startup, or consult your computer’s
documentation for details.
Note that some controllers have a Boot Device
Only option. Choosing this option often solves
the problem and still lets the computer boot
from a CD-ROM or other removable media.
Error Message: “An error has been
encountered that prevents Setup from
continuing. The critical system info
file SySetup.inf layout is corrupt or
missing.”
Translation: This message typically
appears after Setup restarts your computer
during the installation process. It occurs if you
have faulty or incompatible RAM installed on
your computer.
Solution: To fix the problem, remove and
replace your RAM.
Error Message: “Setup cannot load the
keyboard layout file Kbdus.dll.
Setup cannot continue. Shut down or
restart you computer.”
Translation: You could see this error
when you start your computer from the
Win2000 installation CD-ROM to perform an
installation or repair or to use the Recovery
Console. It occurs when all drive letters are
already assigned to existing disk partitions
(when your computer has 24 or more partitions, for example).
After you start from the Win2000 installation
CD-ROM, Mount Manager (the program that
assigns drive letters to disk partitions) queries
your hard drives and assigns drive letters to all
existing partitions, then assigns a letter to your
CD-ROM drive. If you have 24 partitions or
more, Mount Manager can’t assign a letter to
your CD-ROM drive and can’t continue Setup.
Solution: To resolve the problem, power
off one or more of your hard drives to reduce
the total number of existing partitions on your
system, until you have less than 24 partitions.
Then restart your machine from the Win2000
installation disk. This enables Mount Manager
to assign a drive letter to your CD-ROM drive.
Error Message: Setup cannot specify a
video mode.
Translation: On occasion, while installing
Win2000, you may encounter a loop during the
GUI-mode portion of Setup at the videomode selection screen. You may receive an
error message when you choose your video
mode and be prompted to select another
video mode instead. You’re then returned to
the video-mode selection screen, but none of
the options work and there’s no way to
bypass the error message.
Solution: This problem is caused
because Win2000 cannot detect the type of
video adapter installed on your computer.
When it happens, Setup loads a standard
VGA video driver, which only supports 16
or 256 colors. To fix the problem you’ll
need to replace your video card with one
that’s compatible with Win2000. You can
find a list of compatible hardware on the
Win2000 HCL (Hardware Compatibility
List) at the Microsoft Web site (http://
www.microsoft.com).
Error Message: Vertical lines appear
on screen during Setup.
Translation: During Win2000 Setup, you
may see a blank screen with vertical lines.
After Setup restarts your computer, your
screen may function normally for some time,
only to have the vertical lines reappear during the GUI portion of Setup.
Solution: This problem occurs if you’re
using a video adapter with the Trident
9660 chipset. Neither Microsoft nor
Trident continues to support the 9660
chipset. To solve the problem, switch
your graphics adapter to one that has
a supported chipset.
Error Message: “Disk I/O error:
Status=00008001
Failed to arcread the boot partition
to check for a disk signature”
Translation: You may receive this
message when you start Setup from the
Win2000 installation CD-ROM or floppies. It can occur if an IDE (Integrated
Drive Electronics) Zip drive is installed on
the primary IDE channel as the master. (The
arcread application imports files from volume
sets on your CD and displays them on-screen.)
Solution: If that sounds confusing, don’t
worry. To fix the problem, simply disconnect
the Zip drive during Setup and reconnect it
once Setup is complete.
Error Message: “Error code 800b0001
Signature for Windows 2000 Professional is invalid
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: Win2000 does not
prompt you to choose a
language during Setup.
Translation:
You may not be
prompted to choose a
language when you run
Win2000 Setup from
MS-DOS or Windows
3.x, which in turn may
prevent you from configuring some of the
regional settings during
the latter part of Setup.
Solution:
This problem occurs
because the Windows
Setup program,
Winnt.exe, does not
support this feature.
(The language feature
is only available in the
32-bit version of the
Setup program,
Winnt32.exe.) To work
around the problem,
simply configure your
language and regional
options after you’ve
installed Win2000. ■
Setup had problems registering the
following OLE control dll: WINNT
\System32\initpki.dll”
Translation: You may receive this error
message during the device detection phase of a
Win2000 installation. It occurs if the computer
you’re using has an old or outdated BIOS.
Solution: To resolve the problem, you’ll
have to upgrade your motherboard to the latest version of BIOS and run Setup again.
PC Errors • 79
Windows 2000
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Service pack 3 Setup error. An error in updating your system
has occurred.”
Translation:
This problem occurs if the version of the Windows Installer on
your computer is outdated or corrupted.
Solution:
To fix it, you’ll need to disable the version of the Windows
Installer currently on your system and replace it with the most
current version. Click Start, Programs, Administrative Tools,
and Services, and then double-click Windows Installer. Under
Startup Type, select Manual and click OK. Next, click Start and
Run. In the Open box, type regedit and press ENTER. (Note
that in doing so you’ll open the Windows Registry for editing. The Registry is a database of system settings that determines
the configuration of Windows; any change to the Registry can result in significant damage to the system, so proceed past
this point at your own risk.)
In the Registry Editor, locate and delete the following subkey: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CURRENTCONTROLSET\SERVICES\MSIServer. When asked to confirm the deletion, click Yes and restart your computer. Next,
download and install the most current version of the Windows Installer from the Microsoft Web site at
download.microsoft.com/download/WindowsInstaller/Install/2.0/NT45/EN-US/InstMsiW.exe ■
Error Message: The primary monitor is
switched during Setup.
Translation: When you’re installing
Win2000 on a machine with multiple video
cards and monitors, Setup may seem to hang
and display the message “Starting up . . .” If
you turn on all your monitors, you’ll see that
Setup has switched its activity to another monitor. The computer’s BIOS is set to use a monitor
using an AGP (Accelerated Graphics Port)
video adapter by default, but Setup has
switched to a monitor using a PCI (Peripheral
Component Interconnect) adapter.
Solution: Microsoft claims this behavior is
by design. To work around it, simply keep all
your monitors on during Setup.
Error Message: “Setup has encountered
an error and cannot continue.
Contact technical support for assistance. The following status will assist
them in diagnosing the problem.
(0x5, 0x1, 0, 0)
-or(0x5, 0x1, 0x3, 0)
Setup cannot continue. To quit Setup,
press F3.”
Translation: You may see this error when
you try to perform a fresh Win2000 installation
on a hard drive that was converted to a dynamic drive. Specifically, the drive already contains
four dynamic partitions. During Setup, if unallocated free space is still available on the disk
and then selected, Setup tries to create another
80 • PC Errors
partition from this space, which is not permitted. (Note that dynamic disks can support more
than four partitions, but installing Win2000 to
dynamic disks is not fully supported.) The
strings of numbers (0x5, 0x1, 0, 0 and so on) are
special codes that help Microsoft techs pinpoint
and diagnose your problem. You can view
them as “techspeak,” or jargon that a trained
technician will intuitively understand.
Solution: To work around the problem,
simply install Win2000 on another pre-existing
partition or on free space on a basic (nondynamic) disk.
Partitions
Error Message: Setup changes drive
letters after a partition is deleted and
reinstalled.
Translation: If you delete a partition during the text-mode portion of Setup, then create a new partition using the space you’ve
freed up and install Win2000 on the new partition, Setup may change the drive letters on
your system.
For example, say you have a computer with
one hard drive and two partitions: C: and D:.
You also have a CD-ROM drive named E:.
During Setup, you delete the D: partition and
create a new partition using the unpartitioned
space, on which you install Win2000. When
you’re done, you discover that Windows was
installed on drive E: and the CD-ROM drive
has become drive D:.
Why all the changes? During Setup, when
you delete a partition that holds a drive
(whether it’s physical or logical), Windows
reassigns letters to all drives that had letters
after the one you deleted, then assigns the next
available drive letter to the new partition.
Solution: To solve the problem and preserve
your drive’s letters, first delete and re-create the
partitions you’d like, and then start Win2000
Setup. You can do this by using a boot diskette
that contains partitioning software or by using
third-party partitioning software itself.
Error Message: “You chose to install
Windows 2000 on a partition that contains another operating system. Installing
Windows 2000 on this partition might
cause the operating system to function
improperly.”
Translation: You may receive this message
when you boot your Win98/NT machine from
the Win2000 CD-ROM or diskettes. It indicates
that Setup did not recognize the operating system you’re attempting to upgrade. (That’s correct: Setup did not recognize Win98/NT.) If you
choose to continue, Setup will install a new
installation of Win2000, instead of an upgrade to
your current OS, causing your current operating
system to stop working properly.
Solution: Simply put, Win2000 won’t support upgrading Win98/NT when booting from
the Win2000 diskettes or CD-ROM. To upgrade,
boot Win98/NT as you would normally, then
run WinNT32.exe from the Win2000 CD-ROM.
Windows 2000
Error Message: Setup cannot create a
new partition in the space you selected
because the maximum number of partitions already exists on the disk.
Translation: Hard drives are allowed four
partitions, either four primary partitions or
three primary partitions and one extended partition. This problem occurs because you’ve
already created the maximum number of partitions on your hard drive and Setup is attempting to create yet another.
Solution: It’s simple. Delete the last partition
from your hard drive and let Setup combine it
with any unpartitioned space on your drive to
make a new partition. But note: Deleting a partition deletes all data on the partition, so be sure
to back it up first if you plan to keep the data.
Error Message: Multiple unpartitioned
spaces are displayed during Setup.
Translation: During the text-mode portion of Win2000 Setup, multiple unpartitioned
spaces may be displayed on a single hard
drive. When this happens it may seem like it’s
not possible to use all the available space on a
single partition, and you may be unable to
delete the extra (unpartitioned) space. This
problem occurs if you’ve deleted a logical
drive from an extended partition but not yet
removed the extended partition itself.
Solution: To solve the problem, select the
unpartitioned spaces (starting with the last
entry first) on the drive containing them and
then press c to create a new partition. Next,
select the new partition and press d to delete it.
2nd Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message:
“Setup has encountered a fatal error that prevents it from continuing.
Contact your product support representative for assistance. The following status will assist them in diagnosing the problem.
(0x4, 0x1, 0, 0)
Setup cannot continue. Power down or reboot your computer now.”
Translation:
This message can appear at the beginning of Setup if some or all of your
drives are damaged and not working properly. In that case, Setup can’t
reliably count them and is forced to stop. The problem is also caused by
two or more disks that contain the same disk signature (Windows keeps
track of which disk is which using a unique, four-byte disk signature that’s
found in the MBR [Master Boot Record] of each disk) or two or more RAW
disks (that is, those with no file systems) whose MBR checksums are
identical. (The Master Boot Record is a small but crucial program that gets
executed when a computer boots up. It starts the boot process by searching for the partition table to verify which partition to use for booting.)
Solution:
To fix this problem you’ll need to know which drive or drives are causing
the error message. First, remove any drives that are not necessary to the
Win2000 installation. If you have only one drive on your machine to start
with, check all BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) and jumper settings,
cabling, and termination, then run Setup again. (You’ll need to consult
your computer’s documentation for the details of these tasks.) If your drive
is new and has never been formatted, format it and then use the MS-DOS
or Windows FDISK tool to partition it before running Setup. Remember,
you can delete and recreate partitions once Setup begins. ■
Networking
CD-ROM. Once the installation of Win2000 is
complete, download the current Novell client
from www.novell.com and install it.
As an alternative, you can install the
Microsoft Client for NetWare component
included with Win2000. Be sure to also install
CSNW (Client Services for NetWare).
Error Message: “Network component
upgrade
Error copying OEM files from the
specified location.
Do you want to cancel this upgrade?”
Translation: You may see this error message
almost immediately after inserting the Win2000
CD-ROM into the CD-ROM drive of a computer
that’s running a Win2000 beta release and then
clicking Setup. If you click Yes or No, you see
the following error message:
“Error initializing OEM files.
The option to upgrade is not available at
this time. Access is denied.”
This problem occurs when the Novell client
for Win2000 is installed.
Solution: To resolve the problem, remove
the Novell client software from the beta release
of Win2000. Run Winnt32.exe from the Win2000
Error Message: “Installer not responding
Internal Error 2608, 1332”
Translation: You may see this message during installation if the system cannot locate a
valid domain account. This tends to happen
when the domain controller is down (the
domain controller is a type of server that controls access to assets on a Windows network),
when there are failures in the network, or when
the user has changed his password when logging onto the current computer. In the case of
network or computer failures, there could be a
delay while the system waits for a response.
Solution: To solve the problem, contact your
network administrator and ensure that your
domain controller is online and there are no failures on the network. This is a fatal error to
Setup, meaning it cannot continue once this
error is encountered.
Error Message: Setup requests a DHCP
IP address too early.
Translation: On occasion, when you do a
clean installation of Win2000 (that is, you’re
not upgrading from a previous version of
Windows), Setup may request a DHCP
(Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol) server assigned IP (Internet Protocol) address
during GUI-mode Setup before you have the
choice of using a static IP address or using
DHCP to automatically obtain an IP address.
Otherwise put, Setup incorrectly prompts for
a DHCP address before you have the chance
to choose between a static IP address and a
server assigned IP address.
Solution: To solve the problem, create a
Setup answer file named Winnt.sif using the
Setup Manager deployment tool from the
Windows 2000 Resource Kit. The file will contain the static IP address you intend to use. For
details on creating and using a Setup answer
file in conjunction with Win2000 Setup, consult
the Microsoft Help And Support area at sup
port.microsoft.com. RS
by David Garrett
PC Errors • 81
Windows 2000
Windows 2000
Startup
& Shutdown Errors
Say Hello & Goodbye With Ease
ew experiences are as disheartening as
when the computer seems to start up or
shut down fine and then, suddenly,
there is that familiar error message box with an
official-sounding message. Despite the chill
that comes up the spine at such a moment,
error messages rarely mean that all is lost.
Instead, they point to a usually minor discrepancy between what the operating system
expected to find and what it actually did, or
didn’t, discover in its search for settings.
Windows 2000 has a slew of error messages
in its normal course of operations, including
difficulties with external devices, user authentication problems, and simple memory snafus.
Often, computers configured to launch certain
applications or automatically connect to the
network during Startup will see error messages that relate to different configuration
options or incompatibility problems. Similarly, when a computer is shut down, it has to
follow a certain path to turn off safely, which
can lead to errors with networks, devices,
applications, and access.
Here are some of the most common errors
that crop up when the system is turned on or
F
82 • PC Errors
shut down and some suggested methods for
tackling those dreaded error messages.
General Error Messages
Error Message: “An internal Windows
2000 error occurred.”
Translation: Usually, this refers to an
incompatibility with software.
Solution: Deselect any applications that
are set to open at Startup by clicking Start,
Programs, and then selecting Startup. This
will indicate which applications launch automatically. If there’s still a need to have certain applications open at Startup, select only
one application to open and restart the computer. This should indicate which software is
causing the problem. If there are no software
applications selected to open at Startup, contact Microsoft technical support to determine
the cause.
Error Message: “The server is configured without a valid user path.”
Translation: The user path is an entry in
the server’s configuration file. If it doesn’t find
a valid directory listing, it can’t configure the
server properly and this error message results.
Solution: Add a user path by creating the
directory, if it doesn’t already exist. Stop the
server service and type the path of the directory
as the value for USERPATH in the server’s configuration file. Then start the server and
Netlogon services. To do this, choose Start,
Settings, Control Panel, and double-click
System. Select the Advanced tab and click
Environment Variables. Look for Path in the
User Variables and System Variables. If you’re
unsure of where to add the path, add it to the
right end of the Path in the User Variables. A
typical value for this is: C:\j2sdk1.4.2_<version>\bin. Click OK or Apply.
Error Message: “Error loading operating
system.”
Translation: When you start a computer
from the hard drive, the system’s code identifies the Startup disk and identifies the MBR
(Master Boot Record). This is the first physical sector on a bootable disk drive and the
place where the partition table is located. If
the first hard drive on the system doesn’t
contain an active partition, or if the MBR
can’t locate the system partition’s boot sector
to start the operating system, the MBR will
display this error message. Other error messages that may also be displayed because of
this problem are “Invalid partition table” and
“Missing operating system.”
Solution: There might not be an active partition on the hard disk that you want to use to
start the computer, or the wrong partition
might be identified as the active partition. In
that case, use an MS-DOS Startup diskette to
start the computer and use the Fdisk tool to set
or change the active partition. If the MBR is
corrupted, which you’d see if the error message occurs again after using Fdisk, you might
need a third-party disk that can make the
change manually. The partition table field that
should be changed is the System ID field.
Error Message: “The parent directory
could not be located.”
Translation: The parent directory is a part
of the network. When your computer tries to
log on to the network, it searches for the parent directory to establish permissions for the
individual user.
Solution: Ask your network administrator
about assigning permissions to the parent
directory. If you’re the administrator, change
Windows 2000
permissions setting so the system will automatically be granted access at Startup or at logon.
Do this by going to the Active Directory file
inside the SYSTEM folder. Within that, change
the information in the Permissions section.
Error Message: “Unable to allocate
required resources. Initialization failed.”
Translation: There was a shortage of a
resource that the system requires. Usually,
resource allocation messages refer to memory shortages.
Solution: Close some applications that
were designed to open at Startup and reboot. If
the error message appears again, check the
event log to find out if other errors occurred at
the same time to determine if memory is the
problem. If other action is needed for those
errors, such as network resource allocation,
take the steps necessary to correct them.
Otherwise, you may need to install more memory to prevent the error in the future.
Error Message: “Insufficient buffer size,
unable to proceed.”
Translation: A buffer is a temporary storage area, usually in RAM. Its purpose is to act
like a holding area so the computer’s processor
can manipulate the data before it’s transferred
to a device. When this error appears, it means
the display driver and the miniport are working on the assumption that the same buffer
structure has two different sizes. This might
occur because the software that opens at
Startup has been compiled with more than one
version of a header file.
Another possibility is that there’s insufficient space in a miniport structure to hold
mode tables for all the graphics modules that
are supported by a particular adapter. This
might happen if support for more modes has
been added or if the miniport structure has
been made smaller.
Solution: Check memory allocation and
set to default settings. To do this, press
CTRL-ALT-DEL, select Task Manager, and
click the Performance tab. Note the percentage numbers. Start one of your applications
and run it for about 15 minutes, then quit. Go
back to the Performance screen and note the
percentage number again. If the system
resources are significantly lower, there is a
problem with the memory. At this point, you
will need to contact Microsoft support. To
work in the meantime, you can restart your
computer, and it should allow for some operational functionality.
Error Message: “An internal consistency check failed.”
Translation: An error has been detected
with a piece of software, which is preventing the
system from starting up properly with the software that’s set to open automatically at Startup.
Solution: Locate which software applications are set to automatically open at Startup.
Disable all of them and reboot. If no internal
consistency checks are failing, enable one
application at a time and reboot until the
problem reoccurs. This way the troublesome
software can be found. Either use a recovery
program to fix the error with the software, or
don’t enable the software to open at Startup.
Error Message: “Unknown error.”
Translation: This is a common error message that indicates there may be multiple problems with the system or simply a configuration
error that the system can’t identify.
Solution: An error like this will require
multiple troubleshooting efforts, similar to
what’s needed for Stop messages. First, try
restarting the computer to see if the problem is
corrected. If not, check device connections and
configurations, software configurations, and the
event log. If the error message persists and the
problem can’t be located, contact Microsoft’s
technical support.
Error Message: “FTP Server could not
initialize the socket library. The data is
the error.”
Translation: An FTP (File Transfer Protocol) Server is a software application that runs
on a computer host, using the File Transfer
Protocol, and is generally used to host computer files. Sockets are software objects that connect an application to a network protocol or
other computer somewhere on the Internet.
The socket library keeps track of these objects,
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: “While initializing device: Windows Protection Error. You need to
restart your computer.”
Translation:
This is a general message that means there’s a problem with hardware, drivers, or corrupt files. Drivers may not have loaded correctly
while the system was booting, or drivers may have been unloading
improperly during shutdown. It’s also possible that some drivers will try
to use a separate system file, so that when Windows tries to load it at
the same time, an error will occur.
Solution:
Because it’s possible that a virus or multiple improper shutdowns is
causing the error, run a virus check first. Then, check hardware settings to determine if the error could be caused by a damaged component. Because there are many areas that need to be checked to
find the problem, it may be easiest to reinstall Windows if this error
occurs often. ■
Most Frustrating Error Message
Error Message:
“A general network error occurred.”
Translation:
A failure has occurred in the network hardware. This could have
occurred because of a hardware conflict, or it could have happened
because of a problem with any number of server service commands.
Solution:
It’s possible that the last network device or network software installed
is what’s causing the problem. Uninstall the questionable hardware or
software and do a reinstall to determine whether that’s the difficulty.
This is a general message that will take time to sort out if a new piece
of equipment hasn’t just been installed. If that’s the case, each piece of
network hardware and software should be individually tested. ■
PC Errors • 83
Windows 2000
and the socket library function makes the information active by creating a communications
endpoint. When the server can’t find the endpoint, this error is generated. In this case, a
piece of data is suspected to be the cause.
Solution: Check your system resources to
make sure you have enough available memory
to open a socket. Also, check the bindings of
the TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) stack to verify that
TCP/IP appears at the top of the stack. To do
this, open Control Panel and select Network,
then go to Bindings. Check to make sure your
TCP/IP setting is correct. If you don’t know
your IP setting, go to Start, Programs, Accessories, and click Command Prompt. This will
bring up a command line. Type IPconfig and
this will show you the correct setting.
Error Message: “A corrupt extension
‘path’ was detected in the Registry.”
Translation: A file extension name is
incorrect, probably because it has more than
three characters.
Solution: Use the Registry Editor to correct
the corrupted extension. Open the Registry by
clicking Start and then Run. Type regedit in the
box and click OK. Delete the invalid extension
under \\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Macfile\Par
ameters\Extensions.
NOTE: Use caution when changing the Registry.
A mistyped entry can wreak havoc on your PC.
Error Message: “The server could not be
located.”
Translation: The server specified as the
one the computer should access doesn’t seem
to exist or can’t be found.
Solution: Most often, a server location
problem is the result of a misspelling. Check
that the server name is entered properly. To
see a list of servers in your domain, click Start,
Programs, Accessories, and then Command
Prompt. Type NET VIEW in a command line.
Remember to precede computer names with
backslashes, as in \\<computer name>.
Error Message: “Invalid domain or server name.”
Translation: If your computer is set to log
on to a server at Startup, it will automatically
look for the name of the server or domain that
it’s been set to find.
Solution: Make sure you have the correct
domain name or server name. One possibility
is that the server or domain name has been
84 • PC Errors
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message:
“The specified extended attribute handle is invalid.”
Translation:
A file that opens at Startup contains a reference to an attribute that
doesn’t exist. This could be caused by damage to the disk partition or
improper modification of the extended attribute system file.
Solution:
Run ScanDisk, a disk analysis and repair tool that checks a drive for
errors and corrects the problems it finds. To do this, select Start,
Programs, Accessories, and Command Prompt. Type SCANDISK. ■
changed in the time between when the computer was shut down and when it has been
started again. If that’s the case, the new name
should be entered into the computer and the
computer should be restarted.
Device & Driver Errors
Error Message: “Not enough memory
was available to allocate internal storage
needed for the device.”
Translation: Most likely, a third-party driver starts up at the same time as Windows and
conflicts with your printer driver.
Solution: Locate and disable the thirdparty driver so it doesn’t conflict at Startup. Do
this by going into the Control Panel and selecting Add/Remove Hardware, and then locating which driver has been chosen for Startup.
Choose the option to disable it and reboot.
This screen shows a list of the drives that are found
by the system and what type of drives they are.
Error Message: “Registry Startup information is missing or invalid.”
Translation: A problem with the Registry
is usually due to missing or corrupt files that
are the result of drivers loading or unloading incorrectly.
Solution: Try booting into Safe Mode and
replacing the file manually from your CAB files.
It may also be necessary to reinstall Windows
into a new directory for testing purposes.
Error Message: “Computer is too fast for
current driver software.”
Translation: The driver software that’s
been installed is incompatible with Windows 2000.
Solution: Upgrade the device driver for the
device that’s indicated in the error message to
one that’s compatible with the computer.
Error Message: “The device is being
accessed by an active process.”
Translation: If you’re shutting down and
have designated a certain drive for deletion,
this error is an indication the drive specified is
the one that’s currently being used.
Solution: Check the drive that you’re trying to delete and make sure it’s not the current
drive in any of your sessions. If it is, and you
still want to delete or redirect it, end the session so the error doesn’t keep the computer
from deleting it.
Error Message: “The drive letter is in
use locally.”
Translation: A drive letter is a letter that’s
assigned to a drive on a PC. For example, A:
and B: usually refer to floppy drives and C:
refers to a hard drive. This message indicates
that on Startup, the computer was trying to
assign a local drive letter to a shared resource.
Solution: Make sure the shared resource
being accessed doesn’t have the same drive letter that’s being used on an individual computer.
Error Message: “The UPS driver could
not be opened.”
Translation: The UPS (uninterruptible
power supply) is a device used to power a
computer in the event of an outage. On
Startup, the system checks to make sure the
UPS hardware is in place in case there’s a
problem with the computer’s regular power
supply while it’s in operation. This error message indicates that the UPS service couldn’t be
started because the driver that accompanies
your UPS hardware couldn’t be opened. Either
Windows 2000
you don’t have permission to open the file or
the file may be corrupt.
Solution: Make sure you have the necessary permissions on the driver file and all
directories in the path to that file. If the error
message still occurs after you confirm your
permissions, you might need to reinstall the
UPS driver in the relevant hardware.
Error Message: “An inconsistency was
encountered on the tape in drive letter
X:. Do not append to this tape.”
Translation: If the system is designed to
do an automatic backup at shutdown or
Startup, this error could occur. It indicates
that the backup system detected an inconsistency in the tape and warns you against
jumping to the end of the tape so you won’t
risk losing data. It’s also possible that you’re
using a tape that the backup system does
not support.
Solution: Check your backup tape and try
a different tape. Also, to prevent errors in the
future, replace the tape with a new one and
avoid using that tape again.
Error Message: “The wrong version of
the driver has been loaded.”
Translation: A recently installed driver
conflicts with the software that’s been installed
to support the driver.
Solution: Check the compatibility between
the driver and the software and make sure
they are meant to be installed together. If there
still seems to be a problem, contact the manufacturer of the driver to get the appropriate
driver and software combination.
Solution: If administrator access is granted, then log on with that permission and try
again. If you’re a user, ask your administrator
for the necessary permissions and log on again
once they’re granted.
If there’s an error in the network connection, this
Telnet screen will provide some options.
Networking Errors
Error Message: “The binding handle is
invalid.”
Translation: The system can’t use the
information that’s supplied by a distributed
application, so it can’t establish a client-server relationship that would allow for remote
computing.
Solution: Usually, a distributed application
is being supplied by a third-party source, such
as a hosting provider. Contact the vendor of
the application to fix the problem.
Error Message: “You are not logged
onto the Windows 2000 workstation as a
member of the user group that has the
right to view the workstation’s Virtual
Memory settings.”
Translation: If your workplace logs employees into user groups automatically upon Startup,
this error is an indication that there’s a problem
with user access. To use the workstation, you
have to be an administrator or a user who’s been
granted permission to read the settings that
have been put in place by the company.
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: “The environment is incorrect.”
Translation:
The system schedules a series of tasks that it has to do regularly.
These Scheduled Tasks have their own error handling facility that’s
used for errors that are generated while a job is scheduled, an existing
job is active, or an existing job has its properties modified. If errors
occur within the job, the job closes normally and an error message
about the environment is received.
Solution:
Find the location of the error by selecting Start, Programs,
Accessories, System Tools, and then Scheduled Tasks. Click the
Advanced/View Log. The resulting code will display with this message:
“The task completed with an exit code of XX.” The message is inadvertently hilarious, if taken out of context and viewed in a “Greenpeace is
right” kind of way. Similarly, any error message that reads, “Argument
is invalid” never fails to bring an ironic smile. ■
Error Message: “The workstation driver
is not installed.”
Translation: Windows 2000 isn’t installed
properly, or installed, or there’s a problem
with the configuration file.
Solution: Install or reinstall the operating
system. If the message still appears, check to
ensure that installation settings are accurate.
To do this, go to the free tool download section
of Microsoft’s Web site at www.microsoft.com
/windows2000/techinfo/reskit/tools/default
.asp and download the Installation Monitor.
There are more than 300 other free tools available for other troubleshooting tasks.
Error Message: “A network resource
shortage occurred.”
Translation: The network hardware
couldn’t access the resources it needed. This
may have occurred because too many sessions
are operating or the server is out of memory. If
several users are attempting to access the same
information from the server at the same time,
the amount of network resources allocated to
access may have run out.
Solution: Try to connect later or ascertain
how many users are on the server and how long
they plan on using the network resources. Talk
to your administrator about expanding network
resources if this is a common problem.
Error Message: “Drive not responding.”
Translation: While enumerating the contents of the disk drive, Backup noticed a
device error and issued this message to show
that the drive is no longer responding
because of that error.
Solution: If the drive is a remote disk
drive, check that the drive is available and
then try restarting. If the drive still doesn’t
respond, use the Add/Remove Hardware
option to remove the hardware and reinstall it.
Error Message: “The Workstation service is in an inconsistent state. Restart
the computer before restarting the
Workstation service.”
Translation: The Windows Workstation
service is prone to a vulnerability that may let
a remote attacker gain unauthorized access to
a vulnerable host. Because of this, there have
PC Errors • 85
Windows 2000
been patches released to repair the vulnerability, and occasionally they may show up as
inconsistent with the system on Startup.
Solution: Restart the computer.
Error Message: “The computer name
already exists on the network.”
Translation: Each workstation has an individual name for effective network management and security. If two workstations have
been given the same name, the network will
not let both operate.
Solution: The duplication must be eliminated. Take both workstations off the network,
rename one of them, and restart.
Error Message: “Network logons are
paused.”
Translation: The administrator has suspended access to the network by disabling
logons.
Solution: Speak to your network administrator if a notice about logons hasn’t been
issued, or if a time frame for the pause hasn’t
been announced. If you have administrator
access, continue the Netlogon service by typing NET CONTINUE NETLOGON.
Error Message: “Active connections still
exist.”
Translation: When shutting down the
computer, the system identifies connections
that should be closed and issues this alert if it
finds any. Another possibility is that you tried
to delete a network connection that still has an
active process or is being utilized.
Solution: For security reasons, log out of the
connections that are open. In the future, be sure
the processes running on a server are completed
before you break the connection to that server
and that processes on all remote servers are
completed before you log off and shut down.
Error Message: “Invalid address was
specified for adapter name. This interface cannot be initialized.”
Translation: This error is part of a TCP/IP
system and involves bindings. In Windows
2000, binding is the process of associating a
protocol driver with the network adapter it
will work with, and then establishing a communication channel between the two. If part of
that communication is hindered, then this
error may occur. It might also appear if the
Registry is corrupted.
Solution: Remove the TCP/IP and then
reinstall it using the Network option in
86 • PC Errors
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Invalid RDP Data can Cause Terminal Service Failure.”
Translation:
The RDP (Remote Data Protocol) that’s used to communicate with
other computers had a security vulnerability in which a particular series
of data packets weren’t being handled correctly. If a malicious user
were to send these particular packets to an affected server, the server
would fail. The message is considered unusual since it should have
been fixed by a security patch.
Solution:
This is a security vulnerability that can easily be fixed by downloading
the appropriate security patch from Microsoft’s site. The problem is discussed in Microsoft’s Security Bulletin MS01-052. ■
Control Panel. If this doesn’t correct the problem, reinstall the Registry from the Emergency
Repair Disk that was created when Windows
2000 was originally installed.
Security Errors
Error Message: “Certificate Services
configuration information is corrupted.”
Translation: Certificate Services allows for
certificates to be issued to devices such as cable
modems so security features can be put in
place. If there’s an error in the configuration
information, Windows 2000 will consider it to
be corrupted and won’t issue the certificate.
Solution: Several certificate bugs were
fixed in the Windows 2000 Service Pack 4,
including this type of error. Visit the Microsoft
site for Windows 2000 (www.microsoft.com
/windows2000/default.asp) and download
the appropriate service pack.
Error Message: “The Issuing Certificate
could not be found. The Certificate
Services may need to be reinstalled.”
Translation: Unlike the error about information being corrupted, in this case the system can’t
find the information it needs to issue a certificate.
Solution: Reinstall the Certificate Services
and restart. If the error message still appears,
download the Windows Service Pack 4.
Error Message: “A disk I/O failure
occurred.”
Translation: A software error occurred
while Windows 2000 tried to access the security database file.
Solution: Use a backup copy of the security database from a server and try again. If the
error persists, it’s possible that your hard drive
could have hardware problems.
Error Message: “The security database
is corrupted.”
Translation: The security information for
the computer or the connection to the network
is damaged or can’t be accessed.
Solution: The security information should
be on a backup done by the individual or the
company. Restore the security database from
the backup.
Configuration Errors
Error Message: “A problem exists with
the system configuration.”
Translation: The system hasn’t been configured properly. There’s also a chance that
there are interoperability problems with
devices and systems, or that system settings
were changed so a configuration error results.
This is a general message that doesn’t point to
a specific problem. Rather, it could be a host of
problems resulting from poor installation or
hardware and software conflicts.
Solution: Check your system configuration
settings to make sure they’re correct. If they
are, it’s probably best to reinstall the system.
Error Message: “An internal consistency
error has occurred.”
Translation: Usually, this refers to a problem with software. Windows 2000 detects a
problem with settings or configurations of a
specific application.
Solution: Determine which software is the
culprit and reinstall that application.
Error Message: “The configuration file
or the command line has an ambiguous
option.”
Translation: The configuration file is a system file you can change to customize the way
Windows 2000
your system behaves. Such files are sometimes
referred to as customization files. With these
files, commands can be entered to change the
way a system operates. In the case of this error,
a command option that was supposed to determine the system’s next step at Startup or shutdown was determined to be too vague for the
system to follow.
Solution: Make sure the configuration
options are correct. If you’ve indicated a command that’s specific to Startup or shutdown,
examine the command to make sure it’s written properly or that it doesn’t conflict with
other commands.
Error Message: “The configuration file
or the command line has a duplicate
parameter.”
Translation: The command that was
issued conflicts with another command that’s
too similar or includes duplicated instructions.
Solution: Check your commands for duplications or repeated phrases and remove them.
Error Message: “The workstation is not
configured properly.”
Translation: The individual computer that
is starting up is having a conflict with the server, network, or system. Usually, this is a result
of nonsystem configurations, so a reinstallation
of Windows 2000 is probably not necessary.
Solution: Look at the workstation configuration, including how it’s connected to the network, what resources it shares, what devices
it’s using, and how the operating system is
accessed. If an error message still occurs after
rebooting, watch for the point at which the
error message comes up, since that could indicate the difficulty depending on the point in
the Startup when the error occurs.
Error Message: “Unable to obtain configuration information for graphics card.”
Translation: Upon Startup, the system is
searching for information on the graphics
card, but the configuration setup data is missing or incorrect.
Solution: Check the configuration information provided by the graphics card manufacturer and double-check the settings. If the
configuration information is correct, contact
the manufacturer.
Error Message: “The time range specified ends before it starts.”
Translation: Your system has several areas
where a time range problem could occur. With
this message, a time range difficulty is usually
present in a command line that may be directing a computer to shut down at a specific time
or access a network during specified hours.
Solution: Retype the command with a
valid time range. You can use either the 12hour or 24-hour time format, as long as it’s
consistent across the system. If you use the 12hour format, don’t forget to specify a.m. or
p.m. for each variable in the time range.
appropriate space assigned to it, or the space
can be set aside for another purpose, such as
storing data and instructions for parallel processing. This error on Startup means that a
recent repartitioning of the drive has caused
the disk space to be allocated incorrectly. This
is usually a Windows 2000 Server error.
Solution: Reduce the number of partitions
on the disk. This will also speed processing
and prevent similar errors in the future.
Error Message: “Memory Allocation
Failed.”
Error Message: “The user disk quota
information is unusable.”
Most Terrifying Error Message
Error Message:
“An operations error occurred.”
Translation:
This is an example of a Stop message. Windows 2000 generates Stop
messages when it detects an error from which it can’t recover. They’re
used to identify and debug hardware and software problems that occur
while loading or running the operating system. When a critical part of
the operating system fails, Microsoft notes that it’s preferable to generate an obvious error message, such as this one, rather than to fail in an
invisible manner and possibly corrupt data. A Stop error consists of a
blue screen (sometimes called the Blue Screen of Death, or BSOD),
the message, a text translation, the addresses of the violating call, and
the drivers loaded at the time of the error. The Stop message provides
information to help locate and identify problem areas by indicating
where the error occurred at both the address and driver levels.
Solution:
Perhaps one of the most dreaded of all messages, a Stop error will
take time to troubleshoot. Problems can be resolved through general
procedures such as verifying instructions, reinstalling key components
of the system, and verifying file dates. Also helpful are diagnostic tools
such as Winmsd, Network Monitor, and Network General Sniffer. Also
obtainable through Microsoft is the Windows 2000 Resource Kit CD,
which includes detailed information about the system and can isolate
and resolve many issues. ■
Translation: Memory that was supposed
to be directed to a specific application during
Startup or shutdown wasn’t delivered due to
an internal conflict or interoperability problem.
Solution: First, determine your memory
settings and make sure there’s enough available memory for allocation. If there is, examine
the target of the memory allocation to see if
there’s a conflict with existing memory usage.
Error Message: “Maximum number of
partitions exceeded.”
Translation: Partitions divide disk space
into areas that can be assigned and managed
independently. Each application can have
Translation: Disk quotas let you allocate a
specific amount of disk space to a user or
application to ensure that a user or application
doesn’t take more disk space than needed. This
lets you control how much of a file system’s
resources can be accessed.
Solution: Since someone with administrative access must configure disk quotas, ask
your network administrator to update the
information in a way that can be recognized by
the system. If you’re the administrator, check
the information for the user or application disk
quota to make sure it’s correct. RS
by Elizabeth Millard
PC Errors • 87
Windows 2000
Windows 2000
Hardware Errors
Learn What’s Behind Those Cryptic
Messages
ome of the hardware-related error
messages that Windows 2000 sends
out almost drown you in explanations;
others make you want to scratch your head
and say, “Huh?” (And some error messages
do both.)
Win2000 is considered one of the more stable
operating systems Microsoft has released, but
that’s of little consolation when a wayward
error message pops up on your screen. To help
you learn to speak the same language as your
OS, we’ve compiled a list of some of the more
common hardware-related errors you may
encounter as you work with Win2000.
S
STOP Errors
Error Message: “STOP: 0x000000B8
(0x00000000,0x00000000,0x00000000,
0x00000000) ATTEMPTED_SWITCH_
FROM_DPC address 0xf729a248 in XX.”
Translation: When you access an Iomega
Zip drive that’s connected to your computer’s
parallel port, you may see this STOP error
message (an unexpected system error that
Windows is unable to recover from; also
known as a fatal system error). Two of the files
88 • PC Errors
the Zip drive uses, Ppa.sys and Ppa3.sys (represented by XX in the error message), have
problems that sometimes interfere with other
Win2000 processes.
Solution: The Win2000 SP4 (Service Pack 4)
corrects this problem. You can download SP4
via the Windows Update service or directly
from www.microsoft.com/windows2000/down
loads/servicepacks/sp4/default.asp.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000000A” or
“IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL.”
Translation: This usually means that a hardware device in your computer has failed. The
most common culprit is a faulty memory module on the motherboard, but it can also be the
CPU, motherboard, or drive controllers. If the
message occurs during or after installing new
hardware, one or more device drivers (small
programs that let Windows communicate with
a computer’s hardware) may be using an
improper memory address.
Solution: If the problem is hardware failure, remove all unnecessary hardware devices
from your computer and try restarting your
computer with a single memory module, disk
controller, and video card. If the computer
boots successfully, install additional hardware,
one device at a time, rebooting after each
installation. Continue this process until you
determine which hardware device is defective.
If the problem is a new hardware installation, remove the hardware and its device driver. Contact the manufacturer to ensure that
the device is compatible with Win2000. Update
the driver, if necessary.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000077
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) KERNEL
_STACK_INPAGE_ERROR.”
Translation: This series of errors indicates
a problem with accessing the page file (the file
the processor uses to temporarily store data
when actual RAM is unavailable) on your hard
drive. Four parameters display in the error
message, which we’ve labeled 0xParameter1,
0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, and 0xParameter4.
If 0xParameter1 and 0xParameter3 are not zero
(that is, not 0x00000000), then 0xParameter2
contains the I/O (input/output) status code
(information about an operation that is transferring information from [input] or to [output]
a device that’s external to the computer’s main
processor), which describes what happened.
Possible values for 0xParameter2:
• 0xC000009A—STATUS_INSUFFICIENT
_RESOURCES. There isn’t enough physical
memory to load the paging file or there isn’t
enough free space on the hard drive to store
the paging file.
• 0xC000009C—STATUS_DEVICE_DATA
_ERROR. There are bad blocks on your
hard drive.
• 0xC000009D—STATUS_DEVICE_NOT
_CONNECTED. The drive controller cannot
access the hard drive, possibly due to a faulty
cable or connector.
• 0xC000016A—STATUS_DISK_OPERATION_FAILED. There are bad blocks on
your hard drive.
• 0xC0000185—STATUS_IO_DEVICE
ERROR. Improper termination or a defective cable on a SCSI (Small Computer
System Interface)-based device.
Solution: Use the corresponding method to
resolve the error.
• 0xC000009A: Add memory or remove unnecessary files to create more hard drive space.
• 0xC000009C or 0xC000016A: Use a hard
drive utility to perform a surface scan of the
drive and map out the bad blocks. Consider
replacing the drive.
Windows 2000
• 0xC000009D or 0xC0000185: Check the
cabling between the hard drive and the
drive controller for breaks and tears. Make
sure that cables are properly seated and any
SCSI devices are properly terminated.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000023
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) FAT_FILE
_SYSTEM.”
Translation: This error occurs when you
are using the FAT file system (the method an
OS uses to keep track of files) and have a physical problem with a hard drive, or an IRP
(Interrupt Request Packet, a method of sending data or commands between devices and
the Windows Plug-and-Play manager) didn’t
complete successfully or is corrupted.
0xParameter1 contains the source file number (the first four hexadecimal characters
after 0x) and the source line number (the last
four hexadecimal characters) where the STOP
error occurred.
Solution: Disable all backup utilities, virus
scanners, firewall software, and any other software that runs automatically at startup. Verify
the file system’s integrity by running the
CHKDSK utility and repairing any errors it
reports. To do this, click Start and Run, type
chkdsk in the Open field, and click OK.
Contact the manufacturer to ensure that you
have the latest drivers for your hard drive(s)
and any removable media drives, including
tape backup and optical drives.
If you are unable to boot your computer to
run CHKDSK, try using the Recovery Console
to run the CHKDSK routine. To do this, you
will need to boot from a Win2000 setup CD or
startup floppy diskettes. If you don’t have
these handy, you can make a set by booting
from any Windows startup diskette that
includes support for CD-ROM drives, such as
Windows 95/98/Me.
After you successfully boot with CD-ROM
support, insert the Win2000 CD. Navigate to
the SUPPORT\Bootdisk\ directory on the CDROM drive and then run the Make-boot.exe
or Makebt32.exe program to create the setup diskettes.
Boot from the setup diskettes. When the
Welcome To Setup dialog box displays, press
F10 to start the Recovery Console. When the
Recovery Console prompt displays, you can
try to repair the corrupted NTFS drive or
partition by typing the command chkdsk X:
/p where X is the drive letter (for example,
C). When the command finishes, remove the
diskette, type exit, press RETURN, and
restart your computer.
If you still can’t boot your computer, you
may need to delete and re-create the corrupted
partition. Unfortunately, you will lose all data
on the partition.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x00000024
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) NTFS_FILE
_SYSTEM.”
Translation: There’s a problem with the
Ntfs.sys file, the driver that enables your computer to read and write data to a hard drive that
uses the NTFS file system. The problem can be a
corruption in the file, a damaged hard drive
disk, or damaged SCSI or IDE (Integrated Drive
Electronics) controllers (any device that controls
data transfer between a device and a computer).
0xParameter1 contains the source file number (the first four hexadecimal characters after
0x) and the source line number (the last four
hexadecimal characters) where the STOP error
actually occurred.
Solution: Use the Event Viewer to check
for error messages from SCSI or FASTFAT (the
driver that Win2000 uses to access FAT file
systems) in the system log. To launch the
Event Viewer, click Start, Settings, and Control
Panel; double-click Administrative Tools; and
double-click Event Viewer. Check for error
messages from Autochk in the application log.
Error messages may tell you whether a device
or a device driver is causing the STOP error.
Disable virus scanning, backup, disk defragmenting, and other programs that actively monitor the file system. If you have a hardware diagnostic program, it may be able to determine
which device is causing the problem.
Run the CHKDSK utility with the /r switch
to detect and correct file system damage, if
any. To do this, click Start and Run, type
chkdsk /r in the Open field, and click OK. If
you are unable to boot your computer to run
CHKDSK, try using the Recovery Console to
run the CHKDSK routine. To do this, you will
need to boot from Win2000 startup diskettes.
Before booting from the startup diskettes, you
must modify the Txtsetup.sif file, located on the
first setup diskette to disable the Ntfs.sys file
from loading at boot time. Insert the first setup
diskette into a working computer and then use
Notepad to open the Txtsetup.sif file. Scroll
through the file until you find the section
labeled [FileSystems.Load]. Locate the line that
begins with ntfs = ntfs.sys. Put a semicolon at
the front of this line and save your changes. The
new line should read, “;ntfs = ntfs.sys.”
Boot from the setup diskettes. When the
Welcome To Setup dialog box displays, press
F10 to start the Recovery Console. When the
Recovery Console prompt displays, you can
try to repair the corrupted NTFS drive or partition. To attempt this, type chkdsk X: /p where
X is the drive letter (for example, C).
When the CHKDSK utility finishes, remove
the diskette, type exit, press RETURN, and
restart your computer. If you still can’t boot
your computer, you may need to delete and
recreate the corrupted partition.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000002E (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3,
0xParameter4) DATA_BUS_ERROR.”
Translation: A parity error has been detected. This generally indicates a RAM failure in
system memory, the L2 RAM cache, or Video
RAM. It can also indicate a virus in the MBR
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: “The device cannot start. (Code 10) Try updating the device drivers for
this device.”
Translation:
This error message can occur when you’re using the Device Manager
to check the status of specific hardware devices. The cause is usually
either an older driver that isn’t compatible with Windows 2000 or a corrupted driver. In many cases, you’ll see this error when you reinstall
hardware or reinstall Windows to fix an unrelated problem. Most of us
are a bit unreliable about updating hardware drivers. We conscientiously update them once and then forget about them when we need to reinstall Windows or a piece of hardware.
Solution:
Before you reinstall Windows, a hardware device, or its drivers, check with
the manufacturer to ensure that you’re using the most current drivers. ■
PC Errors • 89
Windows 2000
(Master Boot Record, a small program, usually diagnostic application, remove all but one
located at the beginning of a hard drive, that RAM module and reboot your computer. If
launches whenever the computer first boots) or you don’t get an error message, add one RAM
a device driver attempting to access memory in module back at a time and reboot your coma memory range that doesn’t exist.
puter until the problem returns. Replace the
The four parameters provide the following defective module.
information:
Run a current virus scanner that can check
• 0xParameter1: This parameter contains the vir- and repair the Master Boot Block (the first
tual address that was in use when the fault location on a hard drive; usually contains the
occurred. This information can help experi- MBR) on your hard drive.
enced programmers locate a problem within
Although rare, it’s possible for a failing hard
a software program.
drive to generate this error message. Use the
• 0xParameter2: This parameter contains the CHKDSK utility to validate your drive. If your
physical memory address that was in use drive was formatted using NTFS, use CHKDSK
when the fault occurred. This information with the /f (error-fixing) and /r (information
may point to a specific memory chip that recovery) switches. To do this, click Start and
is defective.
Run; type chkdsk /f /r in the Open field and
• 0xParameter3: This parameter contains the click OK.
value of the Processor Status Register, which
If none of these steps resolves the problem,
tracks CPU activity. The data represents the consider taking your computer to a competent
value that was present at the time of the diagnostic testing facility. The problem may
fault. Programmers and hardware develop- be a motherboard failure.
ers can use this information to determine the
events the processor was involved in when Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000007B:
the fault occurred.
(0xF741B84C, 0x00000034, 0x00000000,
• 0xParameter4: This parameter contains the 0x00000000) INACCESSIBLE_BOOT
value of the faulting instruction register. _DEVICE.”
This information may contain the instrucTranslation: You may see this error message
tions that the processor executed when the if you move a hard drive that contains a Win2000
fault occurred.
OS to a different computer or if you install a new
Solution: If the error occurred after you motherboard or hard drive controller. The
installed RAM, there may be a problem with the Registry (a database that Windows uses to store
installation. Make sure that
configuration information)
the RAM is seated correctly
stored on the hard drive
in its connector and that the
you’re booting from doesn’t
contacts are clean. If the
have the correct entries for
problem persists, verify that
the new motherboard or
the RAM is the correct type
hard drive controller. The
for this installation and is
Registry contains the PnP
correctly rated for speed,
(Plug-n-Play) IDs that idenvoltage, and other parametify the hard drive conters required by your speciftroller. Win2000 uses the
ic computer. If everything is
PnP ID to load the correct
driver for the mass storage
correct, contact the manufacdevice. In this case, the
turer of your computer’s
device driver that Win2000
motherboard for BIOS (Basic If you see this error message, one of
Input/Output System, a your device drivers is either corrupted is loading from the Registry
small program that contains or incompatible with Windows 2000.
doesn’t work with the new
all the code necessary to
motherboard or your PC’s
access the basic hardware on the motherboard) hard drive controller.
Solution: If you see this error message after
updates, if any.
If there are no new components to explain the installing a new hard drive controller, your curerror, the problem may be a failed RAM mod- rent Win2000 installation doesn’t have the necessary drivers or the proper Registry entries.
ule, a virus in the MBR, or a failing hard drive.
If your computer manufacturer provided You can solve the problem by reconfiguring
a hardware test utility, use it to diagnose your computer with the old hard drive conwhich RAM module is bad. If you don’t have a troller and attaching the hard drive that contains
90 • PC Errors
the operating system back to the original controller. Confirm that you can boot successfully
and then install the new hard drive controller,
leaving the old controller in place and the hard
drive connected to the old controller. Boot your
computer. Win2000 will recognize that a new
controller has been added, install the necessary
drivers, and make the necessary entries in the
Registry. After you successfully install the new
controller, shut down your computer, remove
the old controller, attach the hard drive to the
new controller, and reboot your computer.
If you see this error message after moving
your hard drive to another computer, or after
installing a new motherboard, you can repair
the Windows installation. Boot from the
Win2000 setup diskettes or the Win2000 CD.
At the Welcome to Setup screen, press
ENTER. Press F8 to accept the license agreement. Select your current Win2000 installation (it may already be selected) and press R.
Follow the on-screen instructions to complete
the repair process.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000007F
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) UNEXPECTED
_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP.”
Translation: This error can indicate hardware or software problems, but the most likely
cause is hardware. The actual failure is listed
in 0xParameter1; the other parameters have no
meaning. 0xParameter1 contains the actual trap
values, which you can look up in X86 processor (any processor that’s compatible with the
Intel X86 architecture) manuals. The most common failures are:
• 0x00000000: Divide By Zero Error. The system made an attempt to divide a number by
zero. Poorly written software or corrupted
data in memory can cause this problem.
• 0x00000004: Overflow. An overflow condition occurs when the result of an operation,
such as addition or multiplication, is
beyond the range of the processor register
that holds the result.
• 0x00000005: Bounds Check Fault. This
indicates that a chunk of data stored in
memory exceeds its expected size. Poorly
written software or faulty memory can
cause this problem.
• 0x00000006: Invalid Opcode (a program
instruction that memory loads as needed).
In this case the processor received an
instruction it couldn’t interpret. Failed
memory that’s corrupting data before it’s
sent to the processor is the usual culprit.
Windows 2000
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: Your computer begins to play “Fur Elise” or “It’s a Small World.”
Translation:
This audible, rather than visual, error message occurs when the CPU
fan inside your computer stops working. We can only wonder if the
Windows 2000 developers had just returned from an overly long
vacation at Disney World.
Solution:
As funny as it may seem to have your PC suddenly start serenading
you, don’t take this light-hearted sound lightly. A malfunctioning CPU
fan can quickly allow your CPU to overheat and fail. Shut down your
computer immediately and check the motherboard and CPU fan. ■
• 0x00000008: Double Fault. A double fault
usually results from a memory page fault.
Here the processor attempted to access an
unavailable memory page. The double fault
occurs because the invalid access result usually generates an interrupt request with
invalid data.
All of these errors can be caused by faulty
hardware, usually RAM that has failed. Other
probable causes include overclocking the
processor, faulty hardware devices, or badly
written software.
Solution: If you’re trying to overclock
(manipulate hardware and/or software settings to eke out extra speed) your computer,
this error message is telling you that the speed
you’re attempting isn’t viable. Lower your
overclock settings or consider returning to the
default values for your processor.
Use a diagnostic utility to check for RAM failure. Replace affected RAM modules if indicated.
Remove any unnecessary controller cards,
such as sound cards, game controllers, and
USB (Universal Serial Bus) or FireWire addons and see if the problem recurs. If it
doesn’t, add one controller back at a time,
reboot, and check again. Continue this
process until you find the defective controller
card. You can replace the controller card or
do without it if you don’t need it.
If you’ve recently installed new software,
uninstall it and reboot your computer. If the
problem still occurs, contact the software manufacturer for updates.
Modem Errors
Error Message: “Error 692: Hardware
failure in port or attached device.”
Translation: Windows was unable to
access or detect the modem. If it’s an external
modem, it may be turned off, or the modem
cable may be disconnected. For internal and
external modems, the modem may not be recognized as compatible with Win2000 or the
handshaking option (a method of exchanging
information that ensures each side has sent or
received valid data) may be set incorrectly.
Solution: If you have an external modem,
be sure the power is on and the cable is firmly
attached. Reset the modem, if needed.
For internal and external modems, check
the Windows Hardware Compatibility List at
www.microsoft.com/whdc/hcl/search.mspx.
Contact the modem manufacturer for the latest drivers.
Error Message: “Error 633. The modem
is already in use or not configured for
dialing out.”
Translation: Win2000 couldn’t open a connection to your modem. This message usually
occurs when an external modem is turned off
or wasn’t connected to your computer when
you booted.
Solution: The easiest solution is to turn the
modem on and/or reconnect it to your computer and then reboot.
If for some reason you can’t reboot your computer, but you still need to access the modem,
reconnect the modem and make sure it’s turned
on. Click Start, Settings, and Control Panel.
Double-click the System icon. Select the
Hardware tab and then click Device Manager.
In the list of devices, right-click Modems and
select Scan For Hardware Changes. A dialog
box will open, indicating that the scanning is in
progress. When the scan is complete, the dialog
box will go away, and the hardware list will be
updated with any changes. The modem should
now be available for use.
Error Message: “Modem is busy or not
responding.”
Translation: Windows is unable to connect
to the modem because it’s already in use by
another application. This generally occurs
when a background process uses the modem
to retrieve information while you are connected to, or trying to connect to, a network using
your modem. This error can also occur if
you’re trying to use two different network services that both require a modem.
Solution: Exit from the application that’s currently using the modem and retry the connection
with the second application. If the error persists,
try resetting the modem (external modem) or
rebooting your computer (internal modem).
Printer Errors
Error Message: “Could not connect to the
printer: The system cannot find the file
specified.” or “Servername\sharename is
an invalid port name.” or “Test Page
failed to print. Would you like to view
the printer troubleshooter for assistance?
The filename, directory name, or volume
label syntax is incorrect.” or “Test page
failed to print. Would you like to view
the printer troubleshooter for assistance?
Unable to create a job.” or “Could not
start a print job.”
Translation: These erroneous error messages crop up when you try to print to a password-protected Win2000 printer share (a
printer configuration that provides printing
access to users on a network).
Solution: You can prevent these error messages by doing one or more of the following.
Log on to the PC with an account that has
the correct permissions. Remove the password
protection from the Windows printer share.
Double-click the My Network Places icon on
your Desktop and then double-click the computer hosting the shared printer. A window should
open, showing shared resources on the selected
computer, including the problem printer.
Click Start, Accessories, and Command
Prompt. In the Command Prompt window, type
net use lptX \\servername\printername password, where X is the next available LPT1 (line
printer terminal) port for your computer, servername is the name for the computer hosting the
printer, printername is the shared printer’s name,
and password is the password you use to access
the shared printer. Press ENTER.
Click Start, Settings, and Printers. Double-click
the Add Printer icon. When the Add Printer
Wizard launches, click Next. Select Local Printer
and click Next. In the list of available ports, select
PC Errors • 91
Windows 2000
the LPT port you specified in the Net Use command above. Click Next. Follow the Add Printer
Wizard’s prompts to complete the installation.
The next time you print, select the printer you
created with the Add Printer Wizard.
Error Message: “There was an error
found when printing the document XX
to LPT1. Do you want to retry or cancel
the job?”
Translation: By itself, this error message
(in which XX represents the name of the file
you’re trying to print) may not indicate a hardware problem. If it occurs frequently, the parallel port your printer connects to may be set
to a nonactive state, either by your motherboard’s BIOS or by Win2000.
Click Start, Settings, and Control Panel.
Double-click the System icon. Select the
Hardware tab and then click Device Manager.
Expand the Ports (COM & LPT) entry by clicking the plus sign (+). Double-click the LPT port
your printer connects to. Click the General tab
and check the Device Status area. If the status
is “Code 29: Firmware not correctly installed,”
then the LPT port is disabled.
Solution: Restart your computer and then
enter the BIOS setup page (usually by pressing DELETE when your computer starts to
boot). There are many different BIOSes, so
consult your computer or motherboard manual to find out how to access your particular
BIOS. What you need to do is locate the configuration information for the parallel port,
which may be under an Advanced, I/O
Configuration, or Communication section of
the BIOS Setup program. Locate the LPT port
and change the setting from Automatic,
OS Controlled, or Disabled to Enabled or
ECP+EPP (contact your BIOS manufacturer
for detailed information about setting the
parallel port parameters). The important
point is that the port should not be disabled
or set to Automatic or OS Controlled.
Solution: Make sure the drive has media in
it. Remove the media, reinsert it, and try
accessing the drive again. If the problem
recurs, check the media to be sure it isn’t damaged, blank, or in the wrong drive, such as an
optical drive. If the problem persists, check the
media in another computer. If it works, try
cleaning the drive with a cleaner designed for
that type of drive.
Error Message: “A port with that name
already exists. Choose another port
name.”
Translation: This message appears when
you use the Add Printer Wizard after failing to
install a printer, usually because you canceled
the installation because of missing information.
When you cancel the Add Printer Wizard, it
doesn’t perform a cleanup to remove anything it
has already configured, so it has probably
already assigned a printer to the port you’re
now trying to use.
Solution: Remove the port the Add Printer
Wizard created. Click Start, Settings, and
Printers. From the File menu, select Server
Properties and then click the Ports tab.
Highlight the port you’re trying to use, click
Delete Port, and click OK.
Error Message: “Serious Disk Error
Writing Drive X.”
Translation: The X represents a drive that
has a serious problem. In many cases, you can
recover the drive using Windows’ error-checking utility or a third-party hard drive utility. In
some cases, you may need to replace the drive.
Solution: Before using a disk utility, try to
back up the drive or copy any important files
to removable media such as diskettes or CDRs. You may not be able to complete the backup or copy all of your files, but it’s always
worth a shot.
Double-click the My Computer icon on your
Desktop. Right-click the drive named in the
error message, select Properties, click the Tools
tab, and click Check Now. In the Check Disk
options dialog box, put a check mark next to
Automatically Fix File System Errors and click
Start. If the drive you’re trying to repair is the
boot volume, you’ll see the following message:
“The disk check could not be performed because
exclusive access to the drive could not be
obtained. Do you want to schedule this disk
check to occur the next time you restart the computer?” Click Yes and restart your computer.
If these steps succeed at repairing the drive,
perform a full backup of the drive and plan to
replace it soon. In the meantime, back up your
files on a regular basis. If you were unable to
repair the drive, you will need to replace it.
Drive Errors
Error Message: “Not ready reading
drive X.”
Translation: There’s a problem reading a
drive (X above), usually removable media.
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message:
“Error performing Inpage Operation.”
Translation:
This error message appears to be telling you that there’s a problem
with Windows 2000’s memory paging system. It could easily convince
you to check system RAM or the hard drive where the Virtual Memory
page is stored.
In reality, this error message is most likely to occur when you’re trying to copy a file from a bad diskette to your hard drive or to another
diskette. When you copy small files (less than 256KB), Windows uses a
different copying process, one that maps the file into Virtual Memory
space. Windows then reads the data from Virtual Memory space,
instead of from the slower floppy drive.
If a problem occurs during the file copy, you’ll usually see the error
message above, which will lead you astray instead of identifying the
correct source of the error (the floppy drive or the media).
Solution:
92 • PC Errors
Inspect the diskette for damage. Reinsert it and try again. If that doesn’t help, a third-party drive utility may be able to recover the file. ■
Error Message: “Non-System disk or disk
error. Replace and press any key when ready.”
Translation: During the boot process,
Windows scans the floppy drive to see if a
diskette is present. If there’s a diskette in the
drive, Windows reads it to determine whether
it contains a bootable system. If it does, the
boot process continues, using the data on the
diskette. If the diskette is blank or doesn’t contain a bootable system, you’ll see the error
message above.
Solution: If you intended to boot from a
boot diskette, make sure you chose the correct
diskette. Then reinsert it and press any key. If
you didn’t intend to boot from a diskette,
Windows 2000
remove it. Then press any key to continue the
boot process.
Device Manager Errors
Error Message: “This device is not configured correctly (Code 1). To update the drivers for this device, click Update Driver. If
that doesn’t work, see your hardware documentation for more information.”
Translation: Although this error message is
pretty explicit, it’s helpful to know what’s
behind it. Win2000 contains a ConfigFlags (data
that reflects a device’s current status) value for
every device in the Windows Registry. In this
case, the device has been enumerated (detected),
but the Device Manager wasn’t able to find an
associated INF file, which is necessary to finish configuring the device. Therefore, the
ConfigFlags value for this device was never set.
This happens when you install a new piece of
hardware but, when prompted for a device driver, fail to install the correct driver.
Solution: Click the Update Driver button. If
the Update Driver button isn’t on the General
tab, click the Driver tab and then click Update
Driver. You’ll need the driver software to complete the installation. Check with the manufacturer to be sure you have the latest drivers.
Error Message: “The driver for this
device might be corrupt, or your system
may be running low on memory or other
resources. (Code 3).”
Translation: In most cases, this message
appears because a damaged device driver is
being loaded into the computer’s memory. It’s
unlikely that the cause really is low memory.
To check, press CTRL-ALT-DEL and then click
Task Manager. Click the Performance tab
where you can verify whether your computer
is low on available memory.
Solution: Replace the bad driver. Contact the
manufacturer and, if a more current driver is
available, follow the manufacturer’s instructions
for installation. If no new driver is available or if
the driver didn’t come with instructions, click the
Update Driver button, which should be just
below the error message. If there’s no button,
select the Driver tab. Then click Update Driver
and follow the on-screen instructions.
After you install the new driver, reboot your
computer. Check the Device Manager to ensure
that the error message is no longer present. Then
use the Task Manager to check memory usage. If
you’re still using a large amount of system
memory, consider adding more RAM.
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Coprocessor not available fault.”
Translation:
This message was fairly common years ago, when motherboards had
separate processors and math coprocessors. Today, a single CPU
contains all of the elements necessary to perform both functions.
Solution:
If your computer isn’t a vintage machine, check the motherboard and
CPU. If you do have an older computer, this is its not-so-subtle way of
telling you that it’s time to consider an upgrade. ■
Error Message: “Windows cannot identify all the resources this device uses.
(Code 16) To specify additional resources
for this device, click the Resources tab
and fill in the missing settings. Check
your hardware documentation to find out
what settings to use.”
Translation: This usually indicates a corrupted or incompatible driver or a hardware
failure. Windows was unable to retrieve the
resource setting information from the hardware
device’s configuration memory, and the driver
didn’t provide the necessary information.
Solution: According to the error message,
you should manually configure the resource settings, but this usually isn’t an acceptable option
because it can interfere with other PnP hardware
devices. Contact the manufacturer for the latest
Win2000-compatible drivers. Use the Update
Driver button under the Driver tab to launch the
Update Driver Wizard and follow the on-screen
instructions.
Restart your computer and then use the
Device Manager to check the status of the suspect device. If the problem still exists, contact
the manufacturer for any special instructions
for uninstalling older drivers or installing new
drivers. If there are no special instructions, the
hardware device may be damaged and may
need to be repaired or replaced.
Miscellaneous Errors
Error Message: “General Protection
Fault in module XX.”
Translation: General protection faults
occur when an application or DLL (dynamiclink library, a small file containing functions
that can be used by multiple applications), represented by the XX above, attempts to write or
read memory assigned to another application.
This is almost always a software-related problem, usually caused by compatibility issues
between two or more applications, but it can
also be caused by a memory error, either in system RAM or the graphics card’s video RAM.
Solution: Use a memory testing utility to
verify that RAM isn’t the problem. Contact
your video card manufacturer for a utility to
test the video card. These utilities can usually
also test video RAM.
Error Message: “While setting up DVDvideo playback, it was found that XX
Video cannot be shown on the computer
monitor because of one of the following
reasons: Low video memory. Please try
using lower display resolution and/or
colors. The display adapter is incompatible with the DVD decoder. Please try to
obtain a display driver update.”
Translation: The video card doesn’t have
enough memory or the DVD playback software isn’t compatible with the video card.
Solution: Contact the manufacturer of your
DVD decoder software for an update that
works with Win2000 and your video card.
Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to
update the software.
If your video card doesn’t have enough
video RAM or performance, you can alleviate
the problem by reducing your display resolution. Right-click your Desktop and select
Properties from the pop-up menu. Click the
Settings tab. Drag the Screen Area slider to the
left to reduce screen resolution. A good starting point is 800 x 600, although you can try
various screen sizes. Click OK and try the
DVD player again. Repeat until the error message disappears and playback quality is
acceptable.
If you plan to watch a lot of DVDs on your
computer, consider upgrading your video card
for better performance. RS
by Tom Nelson and Mary O’Connor
PC Errors • 93
Windows 2000
Windows 2000
Software Errors
How To Figure Out What Your OS Is
Trying To Tell You
indows 2000 is an improvement over
earlier versions of the Windows OS,
but one area that still hasn’t received
the attention it deserves is error reporting.
Windows error messages are often cryptic at
best and sometimes stingy about providing
information that can actually help you diagnose a problem.
We’ve gathered a list of some of the more
common software error messages and deciphered their meaning for you. The next time
you run into a General Protection Fault, you
won’t have to close your eyes, reboot, and
hope for the best. Instead, you’ll not only
understand what happened, you’ll know
what you can do to help reduce the chances of
a recurrence.
W
STOP Errors
Error Message: “STOP: 0x0000000A” or
“ IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL.”
Translation: This usually means a hardware device in your computer has failed, but it
can also occur after you install new software.
In the latter case, no unusual problems existed
94 • PC Errors
before installing the software, and you didn’t
actually add new hardware.
Solution: Uninstall the new software. If
you are unable to restart your computer successfully, turn off the power, wait a few seconds, turn on the PC, and press F8 as your system starts to boot. This will bring up the
Win2000 Advanced Menu Options. Use the
arrow keys to select Last Known Good
Configuration. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the startup process.
Contact the software developer to find out
if a newer version of the software is available
and if there are any known issues between
the software and any hardware installed on
your computer. If there’s a compatibility
problem between your hardware and the software, contact the hardware manufacturer
about possible updates.
Error Message: “STOP: “0x00000050”
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) PAGE_FAULT
_IN_NONPAGED_AREA.”
Translation: The requested data wasn’t
found in memory. Possible causes are hardware (faulty RAM), buggy system services, or
antivirus software.
The four parameters displayed in the error
message, which we’ve labeled 0xParameter1,
0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4, contain the following information:
0xParameter1: The virtual memory address
that the application tried unsuccessfully to
access. When an application needs to store
data in, or retrieve data from, memory, and its
request includes the location where the data
can be found or will be stored.
0xParameter2: The type of memory access
the application was going to perform, either
Write (if 0xParameter2 = 0x00000001), in which
case, the application was going to store new
information in the memory location listed in
0xParameter1, or Read (if 0xParameter2 =
0x00000000), in which case the application was
going to retrieve data stored in the memory
location listed in 0xParameter1.
0xParameter3: If the data is all zeros (that is,
0x00000000), this parameter has no meaning. If
the data is anything but all zeros, this parameter represents the memory address that contains the instruction, executed by the computer’s processor, which caused the error.
0xParameter4: Every STOP error message
displays four parameters, but not all parameters are always relevant. This parameter is not
used for this error message and contains no
usable information.
Solution: This problem often occurs when
you install new system services, including any
software that runs as a service under Win2000.
If this error message appears shortly after you
install a new service, disable the service, and
contact the developer for updates.
If the error occurs at system startup, and prevents you from disabling the service, reboot
your computer and press F8 as your system
starts to boot. From Win2000 Advanced Menu
Options, select Last Known Good Configuration
and follow the on-screen instructions.
If you recently installed or updated
an antivirus program, disable the program
and contact the developer for updates
or assistance.
Error Message: “STOP: 0xC000021A
(0xParameter1, 0xParameter2, 0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) STATUS
_SYSTEM_PROCESS_TERMINATED.”
Translation: A user mode process, such as
Winlogon (which manages how users log on
and off) or CSRSS (Client/Server Runtime
Server Subsystem, which manages background
Windows processes and graphics), has been
Windows 2000
fatally compromised. Because security can no
longer be assumed, the OS switches to kernel
mode (a basic operating mode that doesn’t
involve user settings and applications), which
generates this error.
Win2000 requires Winlogon and CSRSS to
be available at all times. The failure of either
leads to a STOP error. This is one of the few
failures in user space that can bring down
Windows entirely.
Parameter1 contains a status code specific to
the software driver. Contact the developer if
you need to decipher the status code.
The most common causes of this error message are third-party applications, system service
and device drivers, and mismatched system files.
Solution: Installing Win2000 Service Pack 4
can solve this problem. Refer to the “How To
Install A Service Pack” sidebar for details.
Translation: This error message can appear
in multiple ways, including as a BSOD (Blue
Screen of Death; a blue screen that appears
when Windows encounters a serious problem
and crashes) or a simple dialog box. Its appearance depends on how much of the OS was
loaded before the error was encountered.
The PATH in the error message indicates the
path to the file or files involved in the error,
and XX represents the file name.
No matter what form this message takes, it
relates to a corrupted file that couldn’t be
loaded following the integrity check that
Windows performs at startup.
Solution: Replace the file (which is most
often a Windows system file) with a fresh copy.
Start your computer in Safe Mode by pressing
the F8 key repeatedly while the PC boots or
restarts and then selecting the Safe Mode
option. Use the System File
Checker utility to correct the problem by clicking Start and Run,
typing sfc /scannow in the Open
field, and clicking OK.
When the System File Checker is
finished, try rebooting. If you still
encounter the error, or you couldn’t
boot into Safe Mode, you will need
to repair or reinstall Win2000.
To repair Win2000 insert your
Win2000 CD and reboot. When
the option appears to boot from
A hot fix is available from Microsoft for BAD_POOL_CALLER
the CD, press any key. At the
printing errors, which result from documents with bad or corrupt
Welcome To Setup screen, press R
embedded fonts. The fix may require you to pay a support fee.
to start the repair process. At the
If the error message occurs after installing or Repair Options screen, press R to select the
updating an application, uninstall the applica- emergency repair process and follow the ontion and contact the developer. If the error screen instructions.
If the problem persists, you may need to
occurs at system startup, and prevents you
from disabling the service, reboot your com- reinstall Win2000.
puter and press F8 as your computer starts to
Printing Errors
boot. From Win2000 Advanced Menu Options,
select the Last Known Good Configuration
option, and follow the on-screen instructions.
Error Message: “BAD_POOL_CALLER
If you haven’t recently installed new soft- Stop 0xC2.”
ware, the problem may be corrupt or misTranslation: You’re trying to print or use
matched system files. If you can boot the com- Windows Explorer to open a document that
puter, click Start and select Run. In the Run contains a bad or corrupted font.
dialog box, type SFC /scannow and click OK
Solution: Microsoft determined that this is
to run the System File Checker, which should a problem with Win2000 Professional,
Win2000 Server, and Win2000 Advanced
correct any mismatched system files.
Server. A hot fix is available by contacting
Error Message: “STOP: 0xC0000221 Microsoft Help And Support via phone (visit
S T A T U S _ I M A G E _ C H E C K S U M the Help And Support site at www.sup
_MISMATCH PATH\XX” or “STOP: port.microsoft.com to obtain an appropriate
C0000221 unknown hard error phone number). However, keep in mind that
PATH\XX.”
Microsoft recommends installing the fix only if
you’re experiencing a problem and that
you will be charged a fee for calling the
Microsoft support number unless the support
staff determines that the update will resolve
your problem.
Error Message: “Win32k!EXFORMOBJ::vGetCoefficient+0xb.”
Translation: You’re printing to a print
server that’s using Win2000 and a Microsoftsupplied default printer driver, and the page
you’re trying to print contains white text.
Solution: Use the manufacturer’s printer
driver, if one is available. Win2000 SP4 includes
a fix for this issue; refer to the “How To Install
A Service Pack” sidebar for more information.
Error Message: “The separator page
does not exist.”
Translation: You may see this error message when you try to insert a separator page
between printed documents using the
Advanced tab of the printer’s Properties dialog
box. If the printer can’t locate the separator
page file, or if the file’s attributes aren’t set correctly, the error can occur.
Solution: Separator pages are installed as
part of a Win2000 installation and/or with
printer drivers. These pages usually end with a
.SEP file extension. Make sure you’re selecting
the correct separator page for your printer type.
Separator pages must have the correct file
attributes, or they won’t load when called for.
Valid separator file attributes are Read-Only,
Archive, and Normal. Different OSes may
interpret file attributes differently. In Win2000
Professional, a separator page with no file
attributes is considered normal. In Win2000
Server, a separator page with no file attributes
returns an error.
Most Windows installations and third-party
manufacturers set separator page file attributes
to Archive, which allows them to run with both
Win2000 Professional and Win2000 Server. If
you use the backup program included with
Win2000, it clears the Archive file attribute after
performing an incremental backup.
The latest Win2000 Service Pack includes a
fix for this issue.
Error Message: “Unable to create or
open the file XX.”
Translation: The print spooler (program
that manages print jobs) can’t access a file. In
most cases you’re either running low on free
hard drive space or don’t have the proper permissions to print the file.
PC Errors • 95
Windows 2000
Solution: Empty the Recycle Bin. Then use
the Disk Cleanup utility to remove temporary
files. To do this, click Start, Programs,
Accessories, System Tools, and Disk Cleanup.
Select the drive you want to clean up, click OK,
and follow the on-screen instructions.
The print spooler must open the file and store
it temporarily in a spooling directory. If you’re
in a network environment, contact your system
administrator to be sure you have write permission for the directory. If you’re using a standalone computer, access rights aren’t likely to be
a problem, but you can confirm this by clicking
Start, Settings, and selecting Printers. Right-click
the icon for the printer and select Properties
from the pop-up menu. Click the Security tab
and check to be sure you have permission to use
the printer and manage documents.
or deleted. In most cases you can correct the
problem by uninstalling the application that
caused the error and then reinstalling it. This
process should also reinstall the missing file.
Error Message: “An application error
has occurred and an application error
log is being generated. SPOOLSV.EXE
Exception: access violation (0xc0000005),
Address Parameter1.”
Translation: The Windows Print Spooler
(the service for which Spoolsv.exe is the executable file) can cause this error if there are too
many .SPL (spool) files and/or .TMP (temp)
files in the spooler directory. Parameter1 is a
memory address where the violation occurred.
Solution: Remove the .SPL, .TMP, and any
.SHD files currently in the print spooler directory. The default spooler directory is
C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32\SPOOL\PRINTERS.
After you remove the files, restart the print
spooler. Any jobs in the spool directory will
be lost.
If you’re unable to delete the files, turn the
print spooler off. To do this, click Start,
Settings, and Printers. Right-click the appropriate printer and select Properties. Select the
Advanced tab and disable print spooling.
has been changed or moved, so this
shortcut will no long work properly.”
Translation: You’re using a shortcut (represented by YY) to access a file (represented by
XX) that has been moved, renamed, or deleted.
Solution: Right-click the shortcut and
select Properties. Select the Shortcut tab and
click Find Target to search for the file.
For the second error message, Windows
automatically attempts to find the target and
display the same options that display when
you manually select Find Target. If Windows
finds the file, click Fix It to correct the shortcut.
File System Errors
Error Message: “Could not load or run XX
specified in the Registry. Make sure the
file exists on your computer, or remove
the reference to it in the Registry.”
Translation: When an application launches,
Windows checks the Registry for any files, preferences, or other information the application
needs. If a file is specified in a Registry entry for
the application, and that file is not at the path
specified, the error message above will appear.
Solution: This problem may occur because
the file (represented by XX above) was moved
96 • PC Errors
Error Message: “The file XX that shortcut YY refers to cannot be found” or
“The item XX that this shortcut refers to
If you don’t have sufficient write privileges, you’ll
see this error when you try to replace a file. To
get around this problem, rename the new file.
Otherwise, delete the shortcut or cancel the
Find Target function.
If the Find Target function can’t find the file,
you can delete the shortcut, manually locate
the file, and recreate the shortcut.
Error Message: “XX This file exists with
Read-Only attributes. Please use a different file name” or “Access to
PATH\XX was denied.”
Translation: Both error messages refer to a
file (represented by XX) set as Read-Only,
thereby preventing you from overwriting or
changing it. The first error message may occur
when you copy or move a file and the second
when you try to save a read-only file from
within an application.
Solution: Copy or save the file with a different name to avoid having to change the
file’s permissions or find a system administrator to fix them for you.
If you believe the file should not be set to
Read-Only, contact your system administrator.
Error Message: “Cannot copy XX: Access
is denied. The source file may be in use.”
Translation: You’re trying to replace an
existing file (represented by XX) without sufficient write privileges. It might not actually be
the case that the file is in use.
Solution: Rename the new file, so you
won’t be overwriting an existing file.
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: “General Protection Fault in module XX.”
Translation:
General Protection Faults occur when an associated DLL (dynamic-link
library) file (represented by XX) attempts to access protected memory
space assigned to another application, DLL file, or other system component.
Solution:
If XX is an application, be sure you’re using the latest version of the
software. Visit the software manufacturer’s Web site and update the
application if possible.
If XX is a system or DLL file, tracking down the cause of the problem
is more difficult. If it’s a DLL file, click Start, Search, and For Files Or
Folders to search for it. When you find it, check to be sure that the DLL
file you’re using (usually the one located at C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32) is the
latest version compared to any other copies that may exist on your
computer (you can find this information by right-clicking the file, selecting
Properties, and selecting the Version tab). If it’s older than another
version on your computer, chances are an application you recently
installed overwrote a newer version of the DLL file with an older version
included with the application installer. Replace the DLL file with the
newest version. Also, be sure your copy of Win2000 is up-to-date. ■
Windows 2000
If you believe you should have write
permissions for the file, contact your
system administrator.
Error Message: “XX This file is already
in use. Select a new name or close the
file in use by another application.”
Translation: You’re attempting to save or
open a file (represented by XX) that is already in
use by another application. Usually this happens
when you’re working on a file and switch to
another application to work on the same file
without closing it in the original application.
Solution: Switch to the other application and
close the document or the application. Be careful
when closing a file if edits have been made in
two different applications. The last application
to perform a save usually overwrites any
changes made earlier in another application.
Error Message: “Maximum number of
files already open. Close a file or application to open this file.”
Translation: You have exceeded the maximum number of files that the system permits
you to use at one time.
Solution: Close one or more files. Open file
limits can be imposed by an application or by
your computer’s file system. If you work on a
server, or are connected to one, the open file
limits may be a policy decision on the server. If
you’re using a Win2000 server, you can ask the
administrator to check the MaxOpens entry in
the server’s configuration file.
Error Message: “XX The above file
name is invalid.”
Translation: The name (represented by
XX) you’re trying to use when creating a file or
directory doesn’t meet the criteria for a valid
file name. (The full file name may not display
in the error message. It may be truncated or
missing characters.) File or directory names in
Win2000 may contain upper or lower case
characters, except for the following reserved
characters: ? “ / \\ , . * | :.
Solution: Change the file name to include
only valid characters.
DLL Errors
Error Message: “The dynamic-link
library WININET.DLL could not be
found in the specific path.”
Translation: Windows applications use
the Wininet.dll file (a DLL [dynamic-link
library] file stores instructions common to
multiple programs) to communicate with your
Web browser. Wininet.dll is normally located
in the WINNT\SYSTEM32 directory but
appears to be missing.
Solution: Verify that Wininet.dll is in the
C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 directory. If the file is
missing, click Start, Search, and For Files Or
Folders to try to locate it. If you find more
than one copy of the file, check the version
information for each file (you can find this
information by right-clicking the file, selecting Properties, and selecting the Version tab).
Copy the most recent version to the C:\
WINNT\SYSTEM32 directory.
If Wininet.dll is already in the
C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 directory, it may be
an older version associated with a third-party
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “You cannot drag an item into a button on the Taskbar. However if you
do this without releasing the mouse button, the window will open and
you can the drag the item into the window.”
Translation:
This message appears to first tell you that you can’t do something, and
then tell you that you can. Taskbar buttons, which represent currently
open windows and applications, do not support the drag-and-drop
capabilities of the Desktop.
Solution:
Use the Taskbar button to open the window the button represents and
then drag the item into that window. As noted in the error message, you
can accomplish this in a single step by dragging the item to the Taskbar
button, without releasing the mouse button. In a few seconds, the
window the Taskbar button represents will open. Still holding down the
mouse button, drag the item into the newly-opened window. Release the
mouse button to copy or move the item. ■
application, thereby causing compatibility
problems. Search for a more recent version of
the file to use as a replacement.
If you don’t find Wininet.dll, visit Microsoft’s Internet Explorer home page (www
.microsoft.com/windows/ie) to download the
latest version of IE, which includes the
Wininet.dll file.
Error Message: “Cannot overwrite XX:
The specified file is being used.”
Translation: Windows will not allow you
to overwrite a DLL file (represented by XX)
that is currently in use.
Solution: Copy the replacement DLL file to
the Temporary directory, usually located at
C:\WINNT\TEMP. Rename the DLL file in
the C:\WINNT\SYSTEM32 directory by
adding the word “old” to the file name (for
example, Wininetold.dll). Click Start, Programs, Accessories, and Command Prompt. In
the Command Prompt window, type the following after the command prompt, one line at
a time, replacing DLLFILE with the name of
the DLL file you copied to the temp directory.
Press ENTER after each line.
cd %SystemRoot%\temp
copy DLLFILE %SystemRoot%\System32\
exit
Restart your computer to apply the changes.
Error Message: “This program has performed an illegal operation and will be
shut down. If the problem persists, contact the program vendor. XX caused an
Invalid Page Fault in Module YY.”
Translation: The application you’re using
(represented by XX) tried to access protected
memory space used by another application,
system file, or DLL file.
Solution: This error message is common,
and almost always indicates a poorly written
application or DLL file. The affected module
(represented by YY ) is often a common DLL
file used by many applications or the OS. This
makes it difficult to determine which applications are actually interfering with each other.
The best solution is to use the Task Manager
(press CTRL-ALT-DELETE, click Task Manager, and select the Applications tab) to note
which programs were running when the error
occurred. Use this information as a reference if
the error occurs again.
Save data in any open applications and
reboot your computer. If you need to use the
application that caused the problem, limit the
PC Errors • 97
Windows 2000
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: “Unknown error.”
Translation:
Windows doesn’t know what happened and hasn’t a clue what to do
about it.
Solution:
Your guess is as good as ours. You can exit and relaunch the application
you were using, or even reboot your computer, if it makes you feel better,
but neither of these actions will necessarily solve the problem, whatever
it was. This error doesn’t usually repeat itself twice in a row, so
regardless of what you were doing, give it another shot. ■
number of other open applications. Visit the
software manufacturer’s Web site and check
for program updates that might solve the
problem. Also use the Windows Update program (click Start and Windows Update) to
ensure you have the latest Win2000 updates.
Miscellaneous Errors
Error Message: “There was an internal
error and one of the windows you were
using has been closed. It is recommended
that you save your work and close all programs, and then restart your computer.”
Translation: This type of error is primarily
the result of application problems, incompatibility between applications, or background
processes, such as those associated with
antivirus programs. A window was closed to
release system resources that may have
become corrupt or are no longer available.
Solution: Save your work. For future reference, take note of the applications that were
open when the error occurred.
Although this step may be difficult to perform
if your computer is unstable because of this
error, press CTRL-ALT-DELETE to launch the
Task Manager. Select the Performance tab and
check memory and CPU usage. If memory or
processor usage is very high, change to the
Processes tab, and find the processes with the
highest CPU and/or memory usage. Write down
this information and restart your computer.
The next time this error message occurs,
make a note of the same information and compare it with the previous information. The purpose of this exercise is to try to narrow down
the applications or processes that are causing
problems. You can then contact the software
manufacturer(s) about available updates. Also
use the Windows Update program (click Start
and Windows Update) to be sure you have the
latest Win2000 updates.
Error Message: “An error occurred sending the command to the application.”
Translation: This error can occur when
you use the Task Manager to end a task.
Solution: Because you’re using the Task
Manager to try to close an application, there’s a
possibility that the application, or other components of the OS, may be in an unknown state
and unable to respond to the Task Manager’s
command to stop the program from running.
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Due to an unexpected error the system cannot be restarted.”
Translation:
Windows system drivers were unable to force a restart. This can happen
when you try to restart your computer when Windows Media Player or
related applications are open.
Solution:
Microsoft suggests shutting down or restarting, although if you could
restart, you wouldn’t see this error message. We suggest closing any
open applications, or using the Task Manager (press CTRL-ALTDELETE, click Task Manager) to end a task that has stopped responding
to your OS, and then shutting down or restarting. ■
98 • PC Errors
Try selecting the appropriate program and
clicking End Task again. If the problem persists, try closing other applications or processes. If the application still fails to respond to the
End Task command, restart your computer.
Refer to the application’s manual for information about recovering lost data when the application fails in this manner.
Error Message: “XX An error has
occurred in your program. To keep working anyway, click Ignore and save your
work to a new file. To quit this program,
click Close. You will lose information
you entered since the last save.”
Translation: A program has encountered a
problem it can’t fix by itself. The error message
appears to indicate that the problem is with
the program (represented by XX), but the actual root of the problem may be incompatibility
with another application or with device drivers the application uses.
Solution: You can click the Ignore button, but
more than likely the application will crash before
you can save your work. If possible use the Save
As option to save your work under a different
name. This will cause minimal corruption to the
currently open data file. Clicking Close will stop
the program in a fairly clean manner, with less
chance of corruption, but you will lose any work
you’ve done since your last save.
Finding the cause of this problem is difficult.
One approach is to ensure that the application,
your OS, and any device drivers the application uses are up-to-date. Be sure to check video,
multimedia, audio, CD, and DVD drivers
because one or more of these drivers are likely
to have been in use at the time of the error.
Error Message: “Your system is running
low on Virtual Memory, please close
some applications” or “Your system is
low on Virtual Memory. To ensure that
Windows runs properly, increase the
size of your Virtual Memory paging file.
For more information see Help” or
“Your system is low on Virtual Memory.
Windows is increasing the size of your
Virtual Memory paging file. During this
process, memory requests from some
application may be denied. For more
information see Help.”
Translation: Win2000’s virtual memory
(hard drive space reserved to act as if it were
RAM when necessary) settings are preventing
applications from functioning properly. You
are most likely to see one of these error
Windows 2000
messages when you launch an application or
when you attempt to work with large files
from within an application.
Solution: Increasing the virtual memory
paging file (the file on the hard drive reserved
for use as virtual memory) size may alleviate
the problems with specific applications, but it’s
not necessarily the best option. Adding physical RAM is usually a better choice, especially
when application performance is an issue. In
the interim, you can adjust virtual memory settings to allow your applications to run.
Right-click the My Computer icon on your
Desktop and select Properties. In the System
Properties window, select the Advanced tab.
Click Performance Options. In the Virtual
Memory area of the dialog box, click Change.
The value in the Initial Size (MB) field should
be at least one and one-half times your physical memory size. This is the default value that
Win2000 uses when you first configure it. If
you have lowered the value, or added RAM
since installing Win2000, you may need to
increase this value.
For example, if you have 256MB RAM
installed, the Initial Size (MB) field should read
384. The value in the Maximum Size (MB) field
should be twice the initial size, or in this case, 768.
If the values are correct, and you still see the
error message, try using this formula: Initial
size = physical RAM x 2. Maximum size =
Initial size x 2.
Error Message: “An error occurred
while saving changes. Some changes
will not be remembered.”
Translation: This error relates to Win2000
control panels. Most of the changes you can
make within the control panels are written to
the Registry (a database Windows uses to store
configuration information). This error message
indicates that the changes could not be written
successfully to the Registry, so they will no
longer be saved in memory when you restart
your computer.
Solution: A failure writing to the Registry
can occur if you are running very low on available memory. Low memory problems can be
momentary, a direct result of the number and
types of applications you are using or have
recently used. Rebooting should clear the low
memory error and allow you to use the
Control Panel to reconfigure your settings.
If a low memory error still occurs, make
sure your RAM is properly installed, have a
technician check the RAM’s integrity, and/or
add more RAM.
How To Install A Service Pack
o resolve some of the error messages in this article you need to install the latest service pack for Windows 2000, Win2000 Service Pack 4. You can obtain SP4 using the
Windows Update utility. As long as you have an active Internet connection, click Start and
Windows Update to launch the utility, and
then follow the on-screen prompts to
download and install Win2000 SP4.
Alternately, you can visit Microsoft’s
Windows 2000 Service Pack 4 Web page
at www.microsoft.com/windows2000
/downloads/servicepacks/sp4/default.asp
and follow the instructions for downloading
and installing Win2000 SP4. ■
T
Unusually long Registry keys or values can
also cause a failure writing to the Registry. The
latest Win2000 Service Pack includes a fix for
this issue. Refer to the “How To Install A
Service Pack” sidebar for details.
Error Message: “Windows could not
start because the following file is missing or corrupt: \WINNT\SYSTEM32
\CONFIG\SYSTEMced.”
Translation: This message, which is
sometimes also followed by the error message, “System hive error,” indicates that
Windows was unable to load the System hive
(Windows Registry file) at boot time because
the System hive is too big, badly fragmented
(scattered across multiple locations on a hard
drive), or missing.
This problem occurs during an early phase
of the boot process, during which available
memory is limited. The Registry must share
this limited memory with other boot processes,
including loading the kernel (core portion of
an operating system), boot drivers, and other
components. If the System hive is too large to
fit into the available memory, or is so fragmented that it prevents complete loading,
you’ll see this error message.
Solution: Use the Recovery Console to try
to create a nonfragmented (or at least, less
fragmented) version of the System hive. Insert
your Win2000 installation CD and reboot your
computer. At the beginning of the boot
process, when you see the option to Press Any
Key to boot from CD, press any key. When the
Welcome To Setup screen appears, press R to
repair Win2000. On the next screen, press C to
start the Recovery Console. Select the installation you want to repair. Enter your administrator password at the prompt. The Recovery
Console will display a command prompt. Type
the following, one line at a time, and press
ENTER after each line.
cd System32\config
ren system system.old
ren system.alt systemalt.old
copy system.old system
copy systemalt.old system.alt
exit
reboot
If you still see the error message, you will
need to restore a copy of the System hive.
Follow the above instructions to boot into the
Recovery Console. If you have never created a
Registry backup, you will need to restore the
default System hive. If you have backed up the
Registry, you should restore the System hive
from the backup.
If you have never backed up the Registry,
type the following at the command prompt, one
line at a time, and press ENTER after each line.
copy c:\winnt\repair\system c:\winnt
\system32\config\
y
exit
If you have backed up the Registry, type the
following at the command prompt, one line at
a time, and press ENTER after each line.
copy c:\winnt\repair\regbackup\system
c:\winnt\system32\config\
y
exit
You may need to reinstall any hardware or
software you installed after you last backed up
the Registry.
If you still cannot boot into Win2000, consider reinstalling Win2000 or editing the
Registry to reduce its size. RS
by Tom Nelson and Mary O’Connor
PC Errors • 99
Windows 2000
End Connection
Headaches
Windows 2000 Networking
& Online-Related Errors
ithout a network to browse or share
these days, computers seem, well,
boring. A networking problem can
shut down useful work in no time flat. Below,
we’ll parse some of the most common network-related error messages Windows 2000
can throw at you, along with the solutions you
should try first.
W
First Things First
Error Message: “The system could not
log you on. Make sure your Username
and domain are correct, then type your
password again. Letters in passwords
must be typed using the correct case.
Make sure that Caps Lock is not accidentally on.”
Translation: Windows is having trouble
authenticating you either on your local computer or network domain controller (computer
running Win2000 Server that manages network access). Larger networks usually have a
100 • PC Errors
domain controller computer somewhere where
network administrators keep track of everyone’s logon information. If you don’t have a
domain controller on your network, it might be
your own computer that is rejecting you. Ouch!
Solution: This one is pretty self-explanatory.
In most cases, you’re simply typing either the
username or the password incorrectly. Because
Win2000 logons are case-sensitive, the CAPS
LOCK key suggestion offered in the message is
a good one. Make sure you’re spelling everything right and that you didn’t change the
password the other day and
forget about it. If you know an
administrator user ID and
password, log on as an administrator and open the Computer Management console in
Administrative Tools. There
you can check the list of all
users and make sure the user name you’re having trouble
with is, in fact, listed. If the
user ID does not exist on this computer, you can
create it by selecting Action and then New User.
Error Message: “Unable to log you on
because your account has been locked
out, please contact your administrator.”
Translation: The most likely scenario leading up to this error is that you failed too many
attempts to log in properly. Anyone who has
had to log in every morning has done it, usually the day after changing to a new password.
To protect the network from brute-force password hacking, Win2000 automatically cuts off
your user ID for a specified amount of time.
Solution: You can wait it out, but that
might entail sitting around for quite a while if
the timeout period (time it takes until the system allows you to attempt to log in again) is
very long. If you’re connected to a Windows
domain, contact the network administrator
and ask if she’ll help you out of this jam. If you
aren’t connected to a domain, you can
log on to your own machine as an administrator and let yourself back in. Click Start,
Settings, and Control Panel. Double-click the
Administrative Tools icon and then doubleclick Computer Management. In the left pane,
click the plus sign (+) to open Local Users And
Groups and then Users. Double-click the
account you need to unlock and remove the
check next to Account Locked Out.
Error Message: “Your password will
expire in XX days. Do you want to
change it now?” or “Your password has
expired and must be changed.”
Translation: This message speaks for itself
(XX, of course, represents the number of days
you have left until your password expires).
Sure, it’s a pain, but it’s basic network security.
You should change your password periodically to minimize the possibility that some unauthorized person will learn the password and
compromise the system. If your network
administrator has set a time limit on your password, Win2000 will start nagging you a few days before the
password expires to come up
with something new.
Each computer on the network
must have a unique name.
Change your machine’s network
name from the Network
Identification tab in the System
Properties dialog box.
Windows 2000
Solution: Click Yes and the Change Password screen appears. Type a new password
and then type it again to verify. Click OK to
save the new password. Your network administrator might also have set up certain criteria
by which to judge your password to make
sure it isn’t too simple (and, therefore, easy
to crack). You probably won’t be able to use
the same password as last time, and you
might have to include at least one number
and one capital letter.
Error Message: “Your account has been
disabled. Please see your system administrator.”
Translation: Win2000 recognizes your
user ID and password, but the account has
been shut down. Either someone has changed
the settings on your computer or your network
administrator changed settings on the domain
controller machine.
Solution: If you’re connected to a network
and you log in to a domain, the network
administrator is going to have to solve this
issue. If you aren’t part of a domain, try
logging on to the machine with an administrator account to enable your account. Click
Start, Settings, and Control Panel. Doubleclick Administrative Tools and Computer
Management. In the left pane, expand Local
Users And Groups and then Users. Doubleclick the appropriate user name to see its properties. Remove the check mark by Account
Disabled and click OK. The user ID should
work as before.
Learning To Share
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “A duplicate name exists on the network.”
Translation:
If you’re trying to connect a new computer to the network and some
other computer on the same network already has the selected name,
Windows returns this error. Network administrators sometimes run into
this kind of error when they’re transferring settings from one computer
to another, and the network name tags along with everything else. This
error can also occur when two users with the same first or last name
both try to give their machines an easy-to-remember moniker. Any kid
named Tyler is going to have some problems with this in a few years.
Solution:
The network will become a confusing place if two workstations have the
same name, so Windows is not going to let it happen. You will need to
change the name of your computer (or get the other person to change
the name of their computer). Right-click the My Computer icon on your
Desktop and select Properties. In the System Properties window, click
the Network Identification tab and then the Properties button. In the
Identification Changes dialog box, type a new name in the Computer
Name field and click OK. You may need to restart your computer
before the change takes effect. ■
NTFS partition permissions are configured for
individual user or group access.
Error Message: “An error occurred
while reconnecting XX: to \\computer\
resource. This connection has not been
restored.”
Translation: When you see an error like
this, it means that Win2000 is unable to find on
the network the specific computer or resource
you told it to find. Usually this error pops up
when you are attempting to map a local drive
letter (such as that represented by XX above)
to a resource (a printer, for instance) on another computer through the network (represented
by computer\resource). If the resource used to
be accessible, it can be frustrating to find it
absent without leave.
Solution: First, make sure your connection to the network, and especially the
computer in question, is working. Try accessing
a resource on a different computer than the one
that’s proving difficult. If that doesn’t work, the
problem is likely with your own computer.
Make sure you have a connection to the network hub—you should see a green light on
your network adapter and the hub itself.
If you were able to access a different
resource, the target computer might be the
one with the problem. It could simply be shut
off, or it could have an actual network problem. Look for the link lights on that computer
as you did with your own. Assuming the
shared computer is properly connected to the
network, see if the resource it is hosting is set
up to be shared. On the remote computer,
double-click My Computer and navigate to
the resource you want to access through the
network. Right-click that resource and select
Sharing. See that the Share This Folder or
Shared As option is selected and the
right share name is displayed in the
Share Name drop-down list.
Error Message: “\\computer\resource is
not accessible. Access Denied.”
Translation: This is a frustrating error that
can crop up when you attempt to connect to a
shared resource on a network, represented
above as computer\resource.
The resource might even show up as
normal in the Network Neighborhood,
but nonetheless, those two rudest of
words—access denied—assault your
screen.
Often this error means that NTFS
(Windows NT/2000/XP’s organizational system for storing files on hard drives) partition permissions have not
been properly assigned or that share
permissions are not correctly set.
Solution: Check to make sure that The Users section of the Computer Management console is where
both the share permissions and the the administrator of a system controls access on a per-user basis.
Error Message: “My Network
Places: \\computer\resource is
not accessible. The network path
was not found.”
Translation: As with the last error,
this means that the OS is not able to
locate the particular resource you
want. Along with mapping a drive,
Win2000 lets you set up a network
PC Errors • 101
Windows 2000
path in My Network Places as a way to conveniently connect to resources you frequently
use. Either way, various problems can make
the network resource unavailable.
Solution: Troubleshooting a My Network
Places error will be much like troubleshooting a mapped drive letter error. Follow the
instructions provided for solving the previous
error message.
Error Message: “No more connections
can be made at this remote computer at
this time because there are already as
many connections as the computer can
accept.”
Translation: As the error says, too many
people are trying to use this resource at the
same time. How many is too many? Network
administrators can configure resources to allow
only a certain number of connections; that number can vary depending on the configuration. If
the remote computer you’re trying to access is
running Win2000 or WinXP, you may also run
up against a built-in 10-user connection limit.
There might be a software license limit for elements of your networking software.
Solution: Get ahold of the office intercom
and tell everyone else to stop
using that network resource,
or else. OK, we admit that’s
probably not a good solution. An alternative option is
to simply wait and try to
connect again later. Or, ask
the network administrator to
look into the matter and
determine whether the share
can be configured to accept
additional connections.
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Check networking protocol connections . . . TCP/IP CP reported error
733: Your computer and the remote computer could not agree on PPP
control protocols.”
Translation:
You might see this error when you try to connect to an ISP with dial-up
networking using PPP (Point-to-Point Protocol). The most common
cause is that a setting called “Negotiate multi-link for single link connections” is enabled when it shouldn’t be.
Solution:
Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Network And Dial-up
Connections. Right-click the connection you’re trying to use and click
Properties. Click the Networking tab and the Settings button. Clear the
check mark from Negotiate Multi-Link For Single Link Connections.
Click through the OKs to save your changes. ■
any spaces and is less than 12 characters long.
If you don’t have control over that resource,
you might need the network administrator to
make the change.
Scary Errors
Error Message: “STOP: 0x000000C2
(0x00000007, 0x00000fd3, 0x88289700,
0x00000000)”
Translation: Yikes!
This kind of error message,
displayed on a BSOD (Blue
Screen of Death, the common term for the blue
screen that appears when
your computer experiences
a serious crash), really
doesn’t offer any clues on
its own. It can appear ominously when you try to
When you create a new user ID on
close a file on a network
the system, it must be different
Error Message: “Error
shared resource.
from existing user names.
234: Additional data is
Solution: This error
available.”
relates to a known bug in
Translation: You might see this message Win2000 that has been repaired in Service
when you’re browsing folders on a WinNT or Pack 4, a bundle of patches Microsoft put
Win2000 machine from a Windows 95 work- together to address various errors. To downstation. It sounds a bit cryptic—what is this load the most recent Service Pack, head
“additional data” anyway? Why not just spit to www.support.microsoft.com, click the
out an explanation that makes more sense? As Knowledge Base Article ID Number Search
it turns out, the older OS has trouble reading link, and look for Article 260910. There you’ll
share names with more than 12 characters or find information about all Win2000 patches
with spaces. If someone gave such a name to a and packs.
resource on the WinNT/2000 machine, you
Error Message: “STOP: 0x000000D1
could get slapped with this Error 234.
Solution: Just make sure that the WinNT (0xFF8BA000, 0x00000002, 0x00000001,
/2000 computer you want to access over the 0xF3AAA40E) DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS
network has a share name that doesn’t contain _OR_EQUAL”
102 • PC Errors
Translation: This is another error that
results from a known Win2000 flaw. It can
appear when someone removes a TCP/IP
(Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) network connection in a certain way and
may cause the computer to hang.
Solution: Follow the directions for solving
the previous error message to download the latest Win2000 Service Pack. This error was fixed
back in Service Pack 1, but the most recent
Service Pack will include the patch, as well.
Error Message: “STOP: 0x000000D1
(68b6a590 00000002 00000000 bfda3841)”
Translation: As with the last few error
messages listed above, this one results from a
Windows flaw that can crop up in the middle
of a network data stream. It appears while the
system hangs.
Solution: There’s not much you can do to
solve this in the short term other than restart
the machine. When you regain control, head
to the Microsoft site and download the latest Win2000 Service Pack to banish this bug
according to the instructions for solving the
previous two error messages.
Error Message: “Query result parsing
failure.”
Translation: Just as you might find it difficult to understand Win2000 error messages,
sometimes Win2000 finds it difficult to understand the language of the network. When you
see this error, it means that the OS is having
trouble interpreting the network protocol
bindings that tell your computer how to talk
over the network. Basically, bindings are how
Windows knows what protocols to use with
specific network adapters such as your LAN
Windows 2000
(local-area network) card. You might see this
error message after you’ve installed a new
network adapter or software that affects your
network adapter, such as a device driver (software that lets the OS communicate with your
computer’s hardware).
Solution: Begin by resetting the network
protocol bindings for your network adapter
or all of your adapters if you have more than
one. Double-click the My Computer icon on
the Desktop and double-click Network And
Dial-up Connections. Right-click your network adapter icon and select Properties. A
new window appears with information about
the current protocols, services, and network
clients. Reset the binding information by
removing the check next to each listed protocol. When finished, click OK to go back to the
Network And Dial-up Connections window.
Right-click the network adapter icon again
and select Properties. Click the empty checkboxes next to the protocols that your computer needs for its network and click OK. If you
aren’t sure which protocols to check, consult
your system administrator.
Reboot the machine and you should be
able to access the network as normal. If you
still have problems, check the adapter card
manufacturer’s Web site for the latest device
driver updates and troubleshooting information.
Right-click the My Network Places icon on the
Desktop and select PropSeeing Double
erties. In the Network And
Dial-up Connections winError Message: “The sysdow, double-click the icon
tem has detected an IP
for the affected network
address conflict with
connection and select Propanother system on the
erties. Double-click the
network. The local interInternet Protocol (TCP/IP)
face has been disabled.
icon to make changes to
More details are availyour IP configuration.
able in the system event If you need to pick out a new
You’ll recognize the IP
log. Consult your net- IP address, head to the TCP/IP
address because it is always
work administrator to (Transmission Control Protocol/
in the form of four numbers
Internet Protocol) configuration
resolve the conflict.”
separated by periods. For
Translation: Like com- section of the appropriate
example, the IP address
192.168.1.1 is similar to an
puter names, computer IP network connection properties
address you might see. If
addresses (the numerical settings dialog box.
you don’t know what other
names assigned to each device on the network) must be unique for the IP addresses might be available, try increasing the last number in the existing address by
network to function properly.
Solution: No IP address can be used twice one. For instance, in our example you would
simultaneously, so you will need to change the try 192.168.1.2. Then click OK and restart the
address of your computer or the device that machine for the change to take effect.
If you get the same error again, try the
it’s conflicting with it. Because you’re right in
front of your computer, it’s probably easiest to next IP address up. If you have a large netchange that unless the switch would cause work, this method is probably going to take
too much time to be useful. Try calling the
other problems with the network scheme.
network administrator.
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: “Local Area Connection - Network cable unplugged.”
Translation:
With Windows 2000, Microsoft attempted to incorporate some new network troubleshooting tools to help you solve annoying problems a bit
faster. Of course, one of the most common issues, whether we like to
admit it or not, is the simple unplugged cord. Win2000 can sense when a
network cable appears to have suddenly become disengaged and alert
you with the above error and also a red “X” in the Windows Taskbar.
Solution:
The “Network cable unplugged” message is not always exactly correct,
but it does let you know that something is amiss. Start your problemsolving routine by making sure that your network cable is, in fact,
plugged into your computer and into the wall socket. You might want to
try unplugging the cable at both ends and then reattaching it to make
sure that the connection is sound. Your network adapter card probably
has a tiny, green LED (light-emitting diode) next to the connector that
lights up when you have a good connection to your network hub. If this
link light doesn’t turn on, there’s something wrong with the cable, the
network hub, or your network adapter. If no one else connected to your
hub is having the same problem, your cable and adapter might not be
working correctly. Try a different cable to rule that out. Also, check to
make sure that the network adapter is inserted correctly into its motherboard slot or PC Card slot. Sometimes they can become loose as people connect and reconnect cables. ■
Error Message: “The device XX: is
already connected to \\server\resource.
Do you wish to replace the current connection with \\server2\resource2?”
Translation: Win2000 likes to keep track
of stuff, and in this case it’s noticed that
you appear to be trying to map a drive letter
(represented by XX) to a shared network
resource (identified above as server\resource)
that’s already mapped to another resource
(server2\resource2).
Solution: How you decide to solve this
error is really up to you. If you want to remap
the drive letter to a different resource, you can.
Click Yes in the error message dialog box, and
Win2000 will automatically make the switch.
If you want to choose a different drive letter,
click No and pick another drive from the dropdown menu. This might be the best choice if
your network administrator is trying to keep
a standardized system of drives mapped to
particular resources. RS
by Alan Phelps
PC Errors • 103
Microsoft Office 2003
Microsoft Office System 2003
Installation & Startup Errors
raditionally, a Microsoft Office
installation is something like the
fabled girl with the curl in the middle of her forehead: When it works,
it works very, very well, and when
it doesn’t work, it’s horrid. Here are a few of
the grizzliest error messages you might
encounter when installing or upgrading Office
System 2003 and the steps you can take to
make those messages go away.
T
Installation Errors
Error Message: “Error 1305: Setup Cannot
read XX. Check your network connection or, if
you are installing from CD-ROM, be sure that
the YY CD-ROM is in the drive. Click Retry to
continue or Cancel to stop the installation.”
Translation: Your Office 2003 CD-ROM is
damaged, a program installed on your computer is conflicting with the Office 2003 setup,
or there is some sort of trouble with your CDROM (or DVD-ROM) drive. (In this message,
XX refers to a file that Setup can’t read from
the Office CD.)
Solution(s): If you’re installing from a CDROM, attempt the following fixes in the order
listed below.
Try a clean boot before installation. A clean
boot is a Windows startup that loads only the
most basic programs—and that most likely does
not load any software that might be conflicting
with your Office 2003 installation. To set up a
clean boot, click Start and Run; type msconfig
and press ENTER. In the System Configuration
Utility’s General tab, click Selective Start-up,
When Setup has trouble reading files from your
Office CD, try a clean reboot and then reattempt
the Office installation.
104 • PC Errors
and uncheck Process
SYSTEM.INI, Process
WIN.INI, and Load
Startup Items. Click
the Services tab;
check the Hide All
Microsoft Services
option and then click
Disable All. Click OK
and Restart. Try again
to install Office 2003. If
it works, run msconfig
again; in the General
tab, select Normal
Startup so your computer will resume starting
normally.
Make sure your CD-ROM or DVD-ROM
drive is working correctly. Click Start, rightclick My Computer, and choose Properties. In
the System Properties dialog, select the
Hardware tab and click the Device Manager
button. In the list of devices, click the plus sign
(+) next to DVD/CD-ROM drives, right-click
your drive, and choose Properties. If the device
is working properly, close out of everything you
opened. If it isn’t, you can try troubleshooting
the drive by clicking the Troubleshoot button,
but you’ll probably do better to contact the drive
or computer manufacturer’s Web site or technical support line.
Clean your Office 2003 CD-ROM. Wipe the
unlabeled side of your Office 2003 CD with a
clean, soft cloth. (NOTE: Don’t use paper, or even
a soft paper towel can scratch a CD.) Next, wash
and dry the CD using warm water or a CD
cleaning kit—again, no paper.
Try to install Office one more time. If you
still get the error message, it’s probably time to
call Microsoft technical support for help. (In
most cases, installation support will be free and
unlimited until you successfully install Office.)
Error Message: “Error 1307 There is not
enough disk space to install this file. Free
some disk space and then click ‘Retry’, or click
‘Cancel’ to exit.” or “The highlighted volumes
do not have enough disk space available for
the currently selected features.” or “Automatic
Recovery protects your computer if setup fails.
There is not enough disk space on the drive
highlighted below to store the Automatic
Recovery data. This data is temporary and will
be deleted when setup completes.”
Translation: You don’t have enough
space on your hard drive to install Microsoft
Office 2003.
Solution: Free some space. Because programs usually take up much more space than
document or data files, often the fastest way to
reclaim hard drive space is to uninstall any programs you use infrequently or not at all. First,
click Start, then Programs (or All Programs),
and select the program folder for any program
you’d like to delete; if the folder includes an
Uninstall application, use it to uninstall the program (a program’s own uninstall option often
does the most thorough job of removing the
program). Repeat this for as many programs as
you don’t need. Next, click Start and choose
Control Panel. Double-click Add/Remove
Programs. Find a program you don’t need or
can tolerate removing; select it, click Remove or
Change/Remove, and follow the instructions to
remove the program. Repeat this for every program you can afford to remove and then try
again to install Office 2003.
Note that once you install Office, you may be
able to reinstall some of the programs you deleted since few of them will require the amount of
free hard drive space that an Office installation
requires. However, even if you manage to clear
Microsoft Office 2003
enough drive space to install Office, consider
this error message a warning sign. Office and
your other applications aren’t going to run their
best on a crowded hard drive; what’s more, you
may be only a few giant PowerPoint presentations away from a totally stuffed drive.
Error Message: “Error 1608. Setup could not
locate a version of Microsoft Office 97, 2000
or XP on the selected drive. Click OK to stop
the installation. If you have a version of
Microsoft Office on CD-ROM, run setup
again. For more information, see XX under
‘Locating a previous version of Office.’ ”
Translation: While trying to upgrade to
Office 2003 from an earlier version of Office,
setup has prompted you for a CD-ROM containing your previous version of Office—but
after you provided it, you were rewarded
with this error message. After clicking OK,
you were rewarded with another error message, “Installation ended prematurely because
of an error.”
Solution: Restart the Office 2003 setup.
When the User Information box appears, enter
your Product Key in the five boxes provided,
and click OK; in the Product Compliance
Check CD Key dialog box, click OK, too. You’ll
move to the Product Compliance Check dialog
box; in the Drive list, click the CD-ROM or
DVD-ROM drive containing your Office 2003
CD. Remove the Office 2003 CD from this
drive and insert:
• Office XP CD1, if you’re upgrading from
Office XP;
• Office 97 Small Business Edition CD1, if
you’re upgrading from Office 97 Small
Business Edition; or
Most Annoying (And Seemingly Irrelevant) Error Message
Error Message:
“A Runtime Error has occurred. Do you wish to debug?
Line: XX. Error: YY.”
Translation:
After installing Microsoft Office System 2003, your Office applications
work fine—but every time you use Internet Explorer to visit a Web site
you see a message like the one above, prompting you to debug a runtime error. (The error occurs in a script contained in the Web page
you’re viewing; XX is the line number of the script where the error
occurs, and YY is a description of the error, for example, “null” is null or
not an object.)
Solution:
You’re having this problem because the Microsoft Office 2003 installation
sometimes enables Internet Explorer’s script debugging and then forgets
to disable it. Unless you enjoy these messages, you don’t really need
Script Debugging, so turn it off yourself. In the Internet Explorer menu
choose Tools and Internet Options and click the Advanced tab. In the
Settings list, under Browsing, check Disable Script Debugging and
uncheck Display A Notification About Every Script Error. Then click OK.
The messages should disappear. ■
• Office 2000 Small Business Edition CD2, if
you’re upgrading from Office 2000 Small
Business Edition
Wait about 30 seconds for the computer to recognize the changed CD and then click OK. When
the End-User License Agreement appears,
remove the CD for the previous version of Office
and re-insert the Office 2003 CD. Select I Accept
The Terms Of The License Agreement (EULA)
and then click Next. You should be able to follow
the instructions to complete the installation.
Error Message: “The MSIEXEC file is
linked to missing export MSI.DLL:222.”
Translation: Your Microsoft Windows
installer files, which you need in order to
install Office 2003 on Windows 2000, have
been corrupted or damaged.
Solution: Update the installer files for
Win2000. Surf to www.microsoft.com/down
loads/release.asp?releaseid=32832&NewList
=1, which contains links to the appropriate
files and instructions for downloading and
installing them. When you finish, try again to
install Office 2003.
Setup Modification Errors
When you upgrade from an earlier version of
Office to Office 2003, run applications from the
All Programs menu the first time, so that
Windows XP can add the appropriate icons to
your Most Recently Used programs menu.
Error Message: “Office Source Engine error:
Error 25090. Office Setup encountered a problem with the Office Source Engine, system
error: -2147024703.”
Translation: The Office Source engine
(Ose.exe), which gets copied to your hard
drive during Office installation, and which
copies additional Office 2003 installation files
from the CD to your computer when you modify your setup, has somehow become damaged
or corrupted. Without a properly functioning
Office Source Engine, you can’t change anything about your Office setup.
Solution: If you’re lucky, you’ll be able to
solve the problem by recopying Ose.exe from
your Office CD. Insert the CD into your
CD/DVD-ROM drive and use My Computer
to navigate to the Files\Setup folder on the
CD. Right-click Ose.exe and click Copy. Next,
navigate to the PROGRAM FILES\COMMON
FILES\MICROSOFT SHARED\Source Engine
folder, click Paste, and then Yes to replace the
existing file. Cross your fingers and re-attempt
your setup. If recopying the Ose.exe doesn’t
work, you’ll have to uninstall Office, through
the Windows Control Panel, and then reinstall
it. (If you upgraded, you’ll need to have handy
the CDs from your previous version.)
Startup Errors
Error Message: “The application failed to
initialize properly (0xc0150002). Click on OK
to terminate the application.”
Translation: There are two possibilities
here, both of them a bit convoluted. In the first
scenario, sometime after installing Office 2003
PC Errors • 105
Microsoft Office 2003
and Windows XP SP1a (Service Pack 1a ) on
your computer, you either upgraded WinXP
Home to WinXP Professional, reinstalled
WinXP, or repaired WinXP. After doing this
you can’t start an Office 2003 application without getting this error message. The second possibility is that, sometime after installing Office
2003, you installed WinXP SP1 (Service Pack 1)
and did not restart the computer as prompted
at the end of the SP1 installation process. (This
is a common oversight. The Restart Your
Computer request is often buried under other
windows and dialog boxes displayed during
the SP1 installation, and many people miss it.)
Solutions: In the first case, reinstall WinXP
SP1a. The easiest way to do this is to visit the
official Windows XP Service Pack 1a Web page
at www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro
/downloads/servicepacks/sp1/default.asp
and follow the instructions there. For the second scenario, restart your computer. You
should be able to restart your Office 2003 applications without incident.
Error Message: “Your installation cannot be
activated because you have activated up to the
limit for your Product Key. For details about
the maximum allowed number of product activations, close this wizard and review the End
User License Agreement, available through the
Help menu of this application. If you believe
that you are getting this message in error, click
Back and choose the telephone option. The
telephone activation system will provide you
the opportunity to speak with a support representative about all activation issues.”
Translation: This happens after you install
and activate Office 2003 on one computer, and
then install Office 2003 from the same CD(s) on
a second computer—even if you uninstall Office
2003 from the first computer before installing it
on the second computer. Uninstalling does not
deactivate the original activation.
Solution: Call Microsoft’s activation
department at the number displayed onscreen. When you reach the automated phone
menu, press zero (0) and you’ll be directed to a
person who can help you. You’ll need to
attempt a restart of an Office 2003 application
so that your Activation Wizard is on-screen
when you call.
Error Message: “You have not entered a
valid product key. Please check the number
located on the sticker on the back of the CD
case or on your Certificate of Authenticity.”
106 • PC Errors
OneNote Weighs In
neNote is Microsoft’s note-taking and note management program. As a new (and fairly
straightforward) application, OneNote error messages are fairly uncommon. Still, you
might run into one or two, such as the one noted below.
O
Error Message:
“While verifying the integrity of your section files, OneNote detected a
problem with the following file: XX.one.”
Translation:
You tried to open, optimize, find, or back up a OneNote file (where
XX.one is the name of that file), but OneNote has determined that the
file has been damaged or corrupted.
Solution:
For starters, click OK. OneNote’s automatic file repair feature restarts
OneNote, attempts to repair the file, and presents you with a new message:
“OneNote has repaired the following file: XX.one.” However, even though the
file has been repaired, you may have lost data. Open the file and check it. If
any data or content is missing, choose Help, Open Backup; in the File list,
double-click the most recent backup, and then double-click the section that’s
missing data. OneNote opens this section in a new tab. Check the tab; if it
contains the content you’re missing, copy and paste it into the appropriate
section of your OneNote file. When you’re finished, right-click the Backup tab,
and choose Close to close the backup. If the backup doesn’t contain your
missing information, it’s lost for good (unless you can recreate it from memory
or printouts). ■
Translation: You purchased a computer
with Office 2003 preinstalled. Before running
any of the preinstalled Office applications, you
installed Office 2003 Professional. You then
started an Office application and received the
error message, essentially because your system
can’t decide which Office edition the application belongs to.
Solution: You need to remove the Office edition you don’t want—probably the pre-installed
Office edition—and then reinstall Office 2003
Professional. Click Start, choose Control Panel,
and double-click Add Or Remove Programs.
Select your preinstalled Office edition, click
Remove, and follow the instructions to remove
this edition of Office. Next, still in the Add Or
Remove Programs dialog box, click Add New
Programs. Click CD or Floppy; when the Install
Program from Floppy Disk Or CD-ROM dialog
box appears, put your Office Professional CD in
your drive and click Next. Follow the instructions to install Office Professional, making sure
to enter the product key from the back of your
Office Professional CD-ROM case when prompted. You shouldn’t see the error message again.
(NOTE: Even if you decide you’d prefer Office
Standard or Basic, install Office Professional and
use the Custom install to specify only those Office
applications you want.)
Error Message: “Please wait while Windows configures Office XP Pro…” or “This
action is only valid for products that are currently installed.”
Translation: You installed Microsoft
Office XP and then moved the Office XP
shortcuts to a Start menu folder other than
the All Programs folder, where the Office XP
installation puts them by default. Then you
upgraded from Office XP to Office 2003 and
tried to start one of your new Office 2003
applications by clicking what seemed to be
the appropriate shortcuts on your Most
Recently Used Programs menu (the left section of the Start menu). This occurs because
the shortcuts in your Most Recently Used
Programs menu point to your Start menu
folder, while Office 2003 installed your new
Office apps in your All Programs folder.
Solution: Start your Office 2003 programs
from the All Programs menu. As soon as you
use them, WinXP will replace the old shortcuts on your Most Recently Used Programs
menu with shortcuts that point to your new
Office 2003 applications, and you shouldn’t
have the problem again. RS
by Mark Scapicchio
Microsoft Office 2003
Word 2003
Diagnose & Correct Microsoft Word Error Messages
Methods for correcting an error can range
from the simple, such as restarting your computer, to the more complex, such as reinstalling
your application software. You may also need
to install an upgraded version of some other
application software to make it compatible
with Word 2003.
Fatal Error Messages
enerally, there are three types of errors
that you may encounter when using
Word 2003:
• Fatal exception errors
• Nonfatal errors caused by internal conflicts
• Runtime errors
G
All of these error types are caused either by
problems in the application itself, by conflicts
between the application and the operating
system, or by a problem within the document
that you are working on at the time that the
error occurs.
The solutions will vary, depending on the
cause. Your application may have been
installed incorrectly, or it may have been damaged due to an unexpected shutdown or a
virus infection. The solution in either case may
be to reinstall the application. You may have
another application running that has a conflict
with Word 2003, and therefore you might have
to reinstall or upgrade that application to get it
to “play nice” with Word. Sometimes part of a
108 • PC Errors
document gets damaged and you may need to
start the document over (although there are
also techniques that let you reuse most of the
work you have already done).
The way to troubleshoot any error is fairly
uniform. Record the error by writing down
the error message and its details and follow
the instructions included as part of the error
message (if you can) to try to correct the problem. Try to remember what you were doing
when the error occurred. If you didn’t capture
the error message, try to re-create the error so
that you can generate the same error message.
Finally, search the Microsoft Knowledge Base
at www.microsoft.com to see if the error has
been reported and if there is a standard solution. New errors get reported continually to
Microsoft, and the solutions are often available on the Microsoft Web site. If you don’t
see the answer here, you can go to Microsoft’s
Support site (support.microsoft.com) and
enter the information from the error message
to get the latest information.
When Microsoft Word 2003 encounters a
fatal error, it will display a message similar to
the following:
“Microsoft Word 2003 has encountered a
problem and needs to close. We are sorry for
the inconvenience. Please tell Microsoft about
this problem.
We have created an error report that you
can send to help us improve Microsoft Word
2003. We will treat this report as confidential
and anonymous. To see what this error report
contains, click here.”
Note that this type of error dialog box includes a link that allows you to view the details
of the error. This list of details is called the error
signature, and it is where the message usually
looks the most incomprehensible. In spite of that,
this is where the experienced user or a technician
will be able to start diagnosing the problem. The
details will look something like this:
This signature says that the Windows Word
executable file (Winword.exe) had a problem
executing a module of the code called Mso.dll.
AppName
AppVer ModName ModVer Offset
-------------------------------------------------------------------------Winword.exe 11.0.5207.4 Mso.dll
11.0.5207.5 00842bfc
The offset further identifies the location of the
error within the code. For most mortals, this
appears no more helpful than the error message itself. However, you can use this information to search Microsoft’s database of reported
errors to find out the next steps to take to correct the problem, and a support tech can use
the information to help pin down the problem.
Let’s take a look at some common fatal
errors and their suggested solutions below.
Note that in all of these cases, you will have
already seen the fatal error message (similar to
that listed above) and then clicked the To See
Microsoft Office 2003
What This Error Report Contains, Click Here
link to view the detailed signature.
Error Message: (Signature): “Application
Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Mso.dll. Module
Version: 11.0.5606.0. Offset: 00059890.”
Translation: This error normally occurs
when Word 2003 is running in Windows
98/Me Compatibility Mode. Windows XP’s
Windows Compatibility Mode feature allows
you run applications created for earlier versions of Windows on WinXP. However, Word
2003 does not work in Windows Compatibility
Mode for Win98/Me. If you have enabled this
feature and you’re working with a document
created in an earlier version of Word, you may
see this error signature after receiving the initial fatal error message.
Solution: The good news is that Word 2003
will work just fine with documents created in
earlier versions of Word; there’s no need to
invoke Windows’ Compatibility Mode feature.
Turn off the feature by taking the following
steps: Click Start, Search, and then select Files
Or Folders. When the search dialog box opens,
enter winword.exe in the Search For… field
and start the search. Once the search is complete, you should see an icon and file listing
for the Winword application. Right-click the
Winword icon and select Properties. Select the
Compatibility tab at the top of the Properties
dialog box. Click to clear the check mark in the
Run This Program In Compatibility Mode For
box and then click OK. Word 2003 should now
work with documents created in earlier versions of the program.
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Gdiplus.dll.
Module Version: 6.0.3260.0. Offset: 00082f1d.”
Translation: You may see this signature if
Microsoft Word 2003 quits unexpectedly when
you’re using another graphics-heavy application at the same time as you’re running Word.
Especially when you use applications with
heavy reliance on graphics enhancement routines such as DirectX and the DCI (Display
Control Interface), you can get resource conflicts that result in this fatal error. The more
graphics-intensive programs that you use at
the same time, the more likely you will end up
with a resource conflict that will cause this failure. Games are usually the most obvious
cause, but other programs, including Microsoft
NetMeeting, can also trigger this error.
Solution: When a graphics-based error
occurs, you can correct the problem by not
running the graphics-intensive programs at
the same time that you are using Word 2003.
Another alternative is to turn off the graphics
hardware acceleration on your machine. This
will slow down your computer’s response to
DirectX and other graphics commands, but it
will reduce the likelihood of a further fatal
crash. To do so, click Start and select Control
Panel. At the Control Panel, select Appearance
And Themes; then click Display and choose
the Settings tab. Click Advanced and select
Troubleshoot. There is a sliding adjustment for
Hardware Acceleration. Move the slider to the
third position from the left, and you will see
this message:
“Disable all DirectDraw and Direct 3D
accelerations, as well as all cursor and
advanced drawing accelerations. Use this set-
Error Message: (Signature): “Application
Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
Adjust Word’s properties if you’re
having problems with the
Compatibility Mode feature.
If you have a problem with graphicsintensive programs conflicting with
Word, you may need to correct the
Graphics Display settings.
ting to correct severe problems with DirectX
accelerated applications.”
Click OK to complete the adjustment and
then click OK again on the Display Properties
dialog box to close it.
Error Message: (Signature): “Application
Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.55207.4. Module Name: Mso.dll. Module
Version: 11.0.5207.5. Offset: 00842bfc.” When
you close the error signature, you may receive
this error additional message: “The exception
Illegal Instruction. An attempt was made to
execute an illegal instruction. (oxc000001d)
occurred in the application at location
0x31482bfc.”
Translation: This fatal error message
may occur if you are using Adobe Acrobat in
conjunction with Word 2003 to create documents or presentations. An incompatibility
with a file in Adobe Acrobat 5.0.5 is normally
what causes the problem.
Solution: You have two options: You can
buy the upgrade to Adobe Acrobat 6.0.1 or
else rename the Pdfmaker.dot file to prevent
access to the file by Word 2003. To rename
the file, click Start and Search and select
Files Or Folders. When the search box opens,
enter pdfmaker.dot in the search field. Once
the search is complete, you’ll see all instances of the file. Right-click each instance
of the file and click Rename. You can just
rename the extension from .DOT to .OLD
and press ENTER.
Error Message: (Signature): “Application
Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Winword.exe.
Module Version: 11.0.5604.0. Offset: 003606fc.”
Translation: This error is caused by
using OLE (object linking and embedding) to
place objects (images, charts, spreadsheets,
etc.) in a Word 2003 document. OLE is the
process of creating an object in one application and embedding it in another. It is different from merely cutting and pasting because
the embedded object invokes the original
program from within the host program. The
specific problem may occur if you background save a Word document containing an
OLE object. Background saving is the process
that allows you to keep working on a document while it is being saved to your hard
drive. You may see this fatal error message
when saving or printing a document or when
trying to exit Word 2003 if you have OLE
objects embedded in your Word document.
PC Errors • 109
Microsoft Office 2003
Solution: Microsoft has issued an update
to Word 2003 that’s available at the Word
2003 Support Center (support.microsoft.com
/default.aspx?pr=off2003). Installing that
update is the best solution to this problem.
However, if you just want a temporary fix for
the problem, you can disable the Background
Save feature in Word 2003 and continue to
save Word documents with OLE objects
embedded in them. To turn off this feature
temporarily, open Word 2003 and select the
Tools menu. Click Options and select the
Save tab. Click to remove the check mark
from the Allow Background Saves box. Click
OK to close the dialog box and you’ll be able
to save OLE objects in your Word 2003 document. However, keep in mind that until you
install the Word update, your computer will
not be able to perform other tasks while you
are saving documents.
Error Message: (Signature): “Application
Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
10.0.4009.0. Module Name: winword.exe.
Module Version: 10.0.4009.0. Offset:
00144ad3. Word has detected a problem with
the existing normal.dot. Would you like to
create a new normal.dot?”
Translation: Normal.dot is the global
template that stores the majority of your format settings and application-wide macros for
Word 2003. Template files use a file format
that is different from a regular document
file’s format. If the Normal.dot template gets
stored as a Word document (that is, as a DOC
file), you will get a fatal error with this error
signature and the usual prompt to report the
error to Microsoft.
Solution: After you choose Send Error
Report or Don’t Send from the error message,
you’ll see the additional message. Select Yes to
delete the incorrect Normal.dot file and
replace it with a new one having the standard
format defaults. If you have created a specialized default template file for your documents,
you will lose all of your customized settings
and will need to re-create them.
Nonfatal Errors Caused By
Internal Conflicts
Error Message: “The document caused a
serious error the last time it was opened.
Would you like to continue opening it?”
Translation: After the second time you
try to open a document that causes Word
2003 to crash for any reason, Word 2003 will
110 • PC Errors
mark the file as a problem and place the file
on a list of disabled files. Further attempts to
open the problem file will result in this message every time you try to open it until you
correct the problem.
Solution: If Word 2003 opens properly
and your other documents do not experience these errors, you may have a corrupted
paragraph marker in your document. Documents in Word 2003 store their paragraph
formatting in the paragraph marker at the
end of each paragraph and the formatting
for the whole document in the final paragraph marker in the document. You can see
the paragraph markers by clicking the paragraph icon (¶) on your toolbar. Look for a
paragraph that has strange formatting or
fonts, remove the marker from the end of
that paragraph, and save the file. If one
paragraph does not stand out, try removing
the final paragraph marker from the document. Once you think you have resolved the
original problem, you can remove the document from the disabled files list and try
restarting. Find your disabled files by clicking Help and then About Microsoft Office
Word. Click the Disabled Items box and you
will see a list of those items. To remove a
file from the list, select the item with your
cursor and click Enable. If you have previously solved the root problem, you will be
able to open the file.
Error Message: “Microsoft Word cannot
install the necessary files due to Windows
Installer Error 1605.”
Translation: If you have a problem with
the Word Startup folder, Word may fail to
open when you try to start it and you will see
this error message. The Startup folder is the
location where the Word 2003 application
stores templates containing add-ins and
macros that you create. These templates start
automatically when you start Word.
Solution: To resolve the problem, you need
to find out which template is the source of the
problem and delete it from your Word 2003
Startup folder.
The Startup folder is a hidden folder, so
first you need to make it visible by opening
Windows Explorer, clicking the Tools menu,
and selecting Folder Options. Click the View
tab; from the list that appears, select Show
Hidden Files And Folders. Click OK and you
will return to the main Windows Explorer
page. On the left-side pane, click My
Computer and then select the drive where
Word is installed (usually drive C:). Click
Documents And Settings, Owner (or the
name of the person to whom the software is
registered), Application Data, and Word.
Under Word, you will see a folder marked
Startup. (NOTE: It’s possible that your Word
folder may be located elsewhere, depending on
where you installed the application.) Click to
open it and you’ll see a list of all templates
in the folder. Make a new folder by clicking
File, New, and Folder. Name the folder
Temp Startup.
Select the first template listed in the Startup
folder and either drag and drop it into the
Temp Startup folder or highlight the item with
your mouse and select the Edit menu and the
Move To Folder option. Once the file is out of
the Startup folder, try to start Word 2003. If it
starts, you have removed the culprit. If Word
doesn’t start, repeat the process until you find
the offending template file. Once you have
located the problem file, move all the other
files back to Startup and delete the Temp
Startup folder.
Error Message: “The command cannot be
performed because a dialog box is open.
Click OK and then close any open dialog
boxes to continue.”
Translation: When you are in Windows
Explorer and you double-click a Word 2003
document to open it, you may receive this
error message if your Word Startup folder has
a template containing an autoexec macro that
opens a dialog box.
Solution: To resolve this error, you can
start the document directly from Word, which
will avoid any conflict among the dialog box,
Windows Explorer, and Word. You can also
follow the procedure for the previous solution
to locate and delete the template that causes
the problem.
Error Message: “The margins of section
<n> are set outside the printable area of the
page. Do you want to continue?”
Translation: If part of your document
has wider than normal margins, you may get
this error message when you try to print
your document. Choosing Yes will cause
your document to print, although some parts
of the document may not appear on the
page. If you click No, the document will not
be printed. This error occurs because printers are unable to print all the way to the
edge of a page, and you have your margins
set beyond the printer’s range.
Microsoft Office 2003
Solution: You can reset the margins by
making a note of the section indicated in the
error message and then selecting the Edit
menu and clicking Go To. When you see the
Go To What box, click Section. Enter the section number in the Section Number field and
click Go To and then Close. Now select File
and Page Setup. Click the Margins tab and
then OK. You’ll see a dialog box with this message: “One or more margins are set outside the
printable area of the page. Choose the Fix button to have Word set the page margins within
the appropriate range.” Select the Fix button to
increase the margin in the unprintable area to
the minimum setting for the selection.
Most Frustrating Error Message
lmost by definition, all error messages are frustrating. This one’s especially irritating,
though, because you obviously knew (and may even have written down) the password
at one point but have now forgotten (or lost) it.
A
Error Message:
“The Password Is Incorrect. Word Cannot Open the Document.”
Translation:
If you have chosen to place password protection on your Word 2003
documents, you will receive one of these error messages if you enter an
incorrect password when you try to open the document. You can protect
your Word 2003 document with a password by selecting Options from
the Tools menu. Select the Security tab, and you can require a password
to open the document or to change the document. The password can be
any combination of letters, numbers, punctuation marks, or spaces up to
15 characters. Passwords are case sensitive, so make sure your CAPS
LOCK key has not been activated.
Solution:
If you receive this error, retry the password, making sure you have
repeated the correct sequence of characters. Remember to enter the
password using the same uppercase and lowercase characters you
used originally. Unfortunately, if you do not supply the correct password,
you cannot reopen the document unless you wish to resort to a third-party
password-cracking utility. ■
Word will attempt to adjust your document’s
margins if you have them set beyond what your
printer can handle.
You can also just choose to print the document as is, but you’ll probably find that parts
of the document will be cut off.
Runtime Errors
Error Message: “There is not enough
memory or disk space to complete the operation.” Or “There is insufficient memory or
disk space. Close extra windows and save
your work.” Or “Word cannot complete the
save due to a file permission error.” Or
“This program has performed an illegal
operation and will be shut down. If this
problem persists, contact the program
vendor.”
Translation: This error will occur when
you are trying to save a Word 2003 file and
the application stops responding if the page
file (the section of hard drive that Windows
uses as virtual memory) has gotten too large.
In extreme cases the page file can fill up
most of the available space on your hard
drive. This can also occur if you are running
certain antivirus software versions or if you
If you used password protection on
your document, be sure that you
remember the password or you won’t
be able to access your document.
are trying to save your document to a floppy
diskette or CD that is already full.
Solution: Depending on the cause, you
can take several approaches to solving this
problem. You can add more hard drive
space by replacing your drive with a larger
one or you can add an additional (internal
or external) drive. But try the simple solution first: Close any open files or programs
that you don’t need and restart your computer to release the page file. If you are running antivirus software, try disabling the
program temporarily. If that solves the
problem, you should contact the antivirus
software’s publisher to see if there is an
update or a workaround.
You should also consider deleting files or
programs that you don’t need by running
Disk Cleanup. To do so, click Start and select
Programs, Accessories, System Tools, and
Disk Cleanup. You’ll see a dialog box labeled
Select Drive that lets you select the drive you
want to clean up (usually C:). Select the drive
and click OK. When you see the next Disk
Cleanup tab, click to select the files that you
want to remove and click OK. This will
remove the files from your drive and free up
space for your other files.
Finally, another option is to run a file compression utility to free up some space on your
hard drive.
Note that, in the case of the “file permission” error cited above, your problem may in
fact be that you’re attempting to write to a file
without permission to do so. This can occur,
for example, in a network situation when you
have permission to open and look at a file but
not to delete it or change its contents. In a
case like that, you’ll need to contact the network administrator. RS
by Bert Nixon
PC Errors • 111
Microsoft Office 2003
Excel 2003
Diagnose & Correct Excel Errors
Application Name Application Version Module Name Module Version Offset
————————————————————————————————————
Excel.exe
11.0.5612.0
Mso.dll 11.0.5606.0 00059890
This signature says that Excel.exe, the Excel
executable file, had a problem executing a
module of the code called Mso.dll. The Offset
further identifies the location of the error
within the code. Although this sort of message doesn’t make much sense to most of us,
you can use this information to search
Microsoft’s database of reported errors to find
out the next steps to take to correct the problem, and a support technician can use it to
help pin down the problem.
Here are some fatal errors common to
Excel. (Some of these errors may also be common to other applications in the Microsoft
Office suite.) (NOTE: In the examples below, the
assumption is that you’ve already seen the initial
message and have clicked the Details link to view
the detailed error signature.)
xcel 2003, like all Microsoft Office
applications, has its fair share of cryptic error messages. Understanding how
the messages are designed and what they
mean can help you recover from a problem
and get back to using your computer the way
you want to.
There are three basic categories of errors in
Excel:
• Fatal errors that cause your computer to
stop working and require you to restart
your system to begin correcting the problem. Usually you’ll lose any unsaved data
that you were working on when a fatal
error strikes. Fatal errors in Excel 2003 are
most often caused by an incompatibility
with an application external to Excel.
• Nonfatal errors that are caused by interactions with other applications.
• Nonfatal errors that are the result of an
internal setting within Excel 2003. The user
has the greatest amount of control over preventing these errors and correcting them
easily and quickly.
E
112 • PC Errors
Fatal Error Messages
When Microsoft Excel 2003 encounters a
fatal error, it will display an error message
similar to the following: “Microsoft Excel 2003
has encountered a problem and needs to close.
We are sorry for the inconvenience. Please tell
Microsoft about this problem. We have created
an error report that you can send to help us
improve Microsoft Excel 2003. We will treat
this report as confidential and anonymous. To
see what this error report contains, click here.”
Any time you see this error-reporting dialog
box, you have encountered a fatal error. You
may choose to report the error or not; regardless of whether you report it, you can usually
get more detail on the error by clicking the
Details link. Doing so will display the error
signature, a listing of specific details about the
error. Although it looks cryptic to most of us,
the error signature contains more detailed
information about the error, and an experienced user or technician can use this to start
diagnosing the problem. The details of the signature will look something like this:
Error Message (Signature): “AppName:
WinExcel.exe. AppVer: 11.0.5207.4. ModName: Mso.dll. ModVer: 11.0.5207.5. Offset:
00842bfc.” After closing the error signature,
you will see this additional error message: “The exception Illegal Instruction.
An attempt was made to execute an illegal
instruction. (oxc000001d) occurred in the
application at location 0x31482bfc.”
Translation: You may encounter this
message if you’re using Adobe Acrobat in
conjunction with Excel 2003 to create documents and presentations. It’s caused by an
incompatibility with a file in Adobe Acrobat
5.0.5 called Pdfmaker.dot. When Excel
attempts to access the file, it can’t process
the instructions correctly, which causes the
fatal error.
Solution: There are two ways to correct
this problem: Either buy and install the
upgrade to Adobe Acrobat 6.0 or rename the
Pdfmaker.dot file to prevent access to the
file by Excel 2003. If you don’t want to buy
the Adobe upgrade, you can prevent Excel
from accessing the incompatible file by
renaming it. To rename the file, click Start,
Microsoft Office 2003
Search, and select Files Or Folders. When
the search dialog opens, enter pdfmaker.dot
in the Search For Files Or Folders Named
field and begin the search. Once the search
is completed, you will see all instances of
the file. Right-click each instance of the file
and click Rename. You can just rename the
extension from .dot to .old (or another name
of your choosing) and press ENTER.
Error Message (Signature): “AppName:
excel.exe. AppVer: 11.0.5612.0. ModName:
gdiplus.dll. ModVer: 6.0.3260.0. Offset:
00082f15.”
Translation: You may see this error
signature if Microsoft Excel 2003 quits unexpectedly when you’re using another graphics-intensive application at the same time. If
Excel is running graphics routines that compete with other programs for access to the
computer’s display buffer (the portion of
memory that controls the flow of graphics
and video images across your computer
screen), your application may stop working
properly. Especially when using applications
with heavy reliance on graphics enhancement routines such as DirectX and DCI
(Display Control Interface), your programs
may experience resource conflicts that create
this fatal error. The more graphics-intensive
programs that you use at the same time, the
higher the probability that you will cause a
resource conflict that will result in this failure. Games are usually the most obvious
cause of this problem, but other programs,
including Microsoft NetMeeting, can also
trigger it.
Solution: When a graphics-based error
occurs, you can usually correct the problem
by not running another graphics-intensive
program at the same time that you are using
Excel 2003. Another alternative is to turn off
the graphics hardware acceleration on your
machine. This action will slow down your
computer’s response to DirectX and other
graphics commands, but it will also reduce
the likelihood of a fatal crash. To turn the
graphics hardware acceleration off in
Windows XP, click Start and select Control
Panel. From within the Control Panel, select
Appearance And Themes, then click Display,
and choose the Settings tab. Click Advanced
and then select Troubleshoot. Move the
Hardware Acceleration slider to the third
position from the left, and you will see this
message: “Disable all DirectDraw and Direct
3D accelerations, as well as all cursor and
advanced drawing accelerations. Use this setting to correct severe problems with DirectX
accelerated applications.” Click OK to complete the adjustment and then click OK again
on the Display Properties dialog box to close
it. This should eliminate the conflict that
causes this error.
Nonfatal Errors Caused By
Interactions With Other
Applications
These errors are often caused by an incompatibility between Excel 2003 and an earlier
version of the application or by incompatibility
with another application running at the same
time as Excel.
Error Message: “Errors were detected in file
name.xls, but Microsoft Excel was able to
open the file by making the repairs listed
below. Save the file to make these repairs
permanent.” This error message may be followed by another error message after you
attempt to save the file: “Damage to the file
was so extensive that repairs were not possible. Excel attempted to recover your formulas
and values, but some data may have been lost
or corrupted.”
Translation: This error sometimes occurs
when you try to open a file in Excel 2003 that
has been previously saved in an earlier version
of Excel. The workbook may be damaged or
corrupted, and you will experience this error
even though the Excel file opens without any
problem in your earlier version of Excel.
Solution: If you have the earlier version of
Excel available, install it on the computer
where you have Excel 2003 installed. Open the
original file, copy the file, and paste it into an
open Excel 2003 workbook. You should now
be able to save the file in Excel 2003.
Error Message: “Unable to read file.”
Translation: This is an error that often
occurs when you try to open an Excel 2003 file
that contains links to other Excel spreadsheets
that have been generated by exporting a
Microsoft Access report to Excel 2003.
Solution: You can usually get your files to
open properly if you first open the subsidiary
linked Excel workbooks before you open the
workbook that contains the links from the
Access files.
Error Messages: “This workbook contains
one or more Microsoft Excel 4.0 macros. These
macros may contain viruses or other harmful
code. These macros will be disabled.” Or,
“This workbook contains one or more
Microsoft Excel 4.0 macros. These macros may
contain viruses or other harmful code. Open
this workbook only if you trust the source. Do
you want to enable these macros?”
Translation: This error occurs when
your workbook contains macros assigned to
Microsoft Excel 4.0. Macros are predefined
commands that cause a series of specific
steps to be executed automatically within a
program such as Excel 2003 when a workbook is opened. Because these commands
sometimes contain malicious code when you
receive them from outside sources, Excel
2003 has several macro-related security settings designed to detect macros in new
workbooks and to alert the user to their presence. This gives you the opportunity to
decide if you want to trust the macro and
proceed, verify the source of the file, or
delete the macro before opening the workbook. If your Macro Security Level is set to
High, you will see the first error message. If
your setting is Medium, you will see the second message. If your security level is set to
Low (not recommended), you will not see
the message. View your macro security levels by opening the Tools menu at the top of
the worksheet and then selecting Macro and
Security. You have the option of modifying
your settings at this point.
Solution: When you get this message and
you believe you want to open the workbook,
you may choose to remove the macro from
the workbook. Remove the macro or macros
by selecting the Insert menu, selecting
Name, and clicking Define. You should see
names associated with the macros. Select the
name and click Delete. Repeat these steps for
each name in the workbook. When you’re
finished deleting the macros, click OK, select
the File menu and Save As, and save the file
under a different name.
Nonfatal Errors Resulting From
An Internal Setting Within Excel
2003
By far, these are the most common types
of errors you will encounter in Excel 2003.
Luckily, they’re also usually the simplest
errors to correct, once you understand the
cause of the problem.
Error Message: “The document caused a
serious error the last time it was opened.
Would you like to continue opening it?”
PC Errors • 113
Microsoft Office 2003
Translation: After the second time you try
to open a document that causes Excel 2003 to
crash for any reason, Excel 2003 will mark the
file as a problem and place the file on a list of
disabled files. Further attempts to open the file
will result in this message.
Solution: You need to remove the file from
the Disabled Files list, but not until you’ve
found and corrected the cause of the problem.
Find your disabled files by clicking Help and
then About Microsoft Office Excel. Click the
Disabled Items box, and you’ll see a list. To
Locate your disabled files in Excel
2003 by selecting Help and then
clicking About Microsoft Office Excel
2003. The Disabled Files tab lets you
see and enable disabled files once
you have corrected any errors.
remove a file from the list, select the item and
click Enable. If you have previously solved the
problem, you should now be able to open the
file normally.
Error Message: “Microsoft Excel cannot
find the data you’re searching for. Check your
search options, location, and formatting.”
Translation: If you are using the Data
Filter command in Microsoft Excel 2003, you
may receive this error message when you
use the Find utility to locate text, values, or
other data in your filtered list. If your data
filtering parameters exclude the data or text
that you are looking for so that it is not displayed, the Search utility will not be able to
find the data.
Solution: You can solve this problem by
setting the filter criteria to Show All on each
worksheet in your workbook before you perform the search. You set the filter in the Excel
worksheet by clicking Data on the menu bar at
the top of the screen and then selecting Filter
and Show All. Do this for each worksheet that
you want to search.
Error Message: “Cannot delete file name.
This file is in use by the following program:
Microsoft Excel. You must close the file
before proceeding.”
114 • PC Errors
Translation: There are several locations
within Windows from which you can delete a
file. Among these are the dialog boxes for the
Open and Save As functions in Excel 2003, as
well as in Windows Explorer. When you try
to delete an Excel 2003 file from any of these
locations, you will see this error if the file
you are trying to delete is already open elsewhere on your computer. When Excel opens
a file, the file cannot be deleted and can be
opened again only as a read-only file. If you
are working in a networked environment
where multiple people might have access to
files, someone else may have the file open
and locked.
Solution: Because you can’t delete an
open, locked file, you need to locate the open
version of the file and close it. In a networked
environment, it is also common for the network administrator to restrict the right to
delete a file. If that is the case, you should
contact your network administrator to give
you the appropriate level of permission to
delete the file.
Error Message: “Cannot find the file file
name.xls (or one of its components).
Make sure the path and file name are correct and that all required libraries are
available.”
Reassociate Excel 2003 files, if
necessary, by forcing the program
to rewrite its Registry keys.
Run. In the Run field, enter excel /unregserver
and click OK. Repeat the Start and Run steps,
but this time type excel /regserver and click OK.
Start Excel; after it runs, quit the program and
restart your computer. (Note the space after
“excel” and before the slash.)
Error Message: “This operation is attempting to change a filtered range on your worksheet and cannot be completed. To complete
this operation, the AutoFilter feature in the
worksheet needs to be modified.”
Translation: You will receive this error
message when you try to create a list from a
filtered range of cells in Excel 2003 if the last
row of your selected range of cells does not
appear in the filtered range. For instance, let’s
say you’re working with a spreadsheet
range that includes rows 1 through 31 on
your spreadsheet, but your currently active
filtering includes the data only through row
28. AutoFilter will prevent you from seeing
the data in the last three rows of the range,
and you will get the error.
Solution: You can work around this problem by including the first blank row under the
filtered range when you specify the range for
your list. This way you’ll be sure that all the
data is considered in the list.
Error Message: “Some of the cells you are
trying to change are password protected, but
no one password will allow access to all of
the cells. Click OK, and then try editing one
cell at a time.”
Translation: If you have password protection on a range of cells in your Excel 2003
worksheet, you’ll receive this message if you
try to edit more than one protected cell at the
same time, for instance, by trying to copy the
contents of a range of cells into a protected
range of cells.
Solution: As long as you have the correct passwords, you can solve this problem
by double-clicking any single cell in the
range you want to edit. Excel will prompt
you for the password. Enter the password
and click OK. This will remove the range
protection for all the cells in your target
Translation: When you attempt to open
Microsoft Excel files from an object embedded
in an application other than Excel 2003, you
may receive this error message if Excel is not
properly configured in the Registry.
Solution: You will need to “register” your
copy of Excel by forcing it to rewrite its Registry
keys. This will also cause Excel to reassociate all
of its files and workbooks.
(NOTE: This procedure is not
the same thing as registering the
application software with the
manufacturer.) To register
Excel, first quit Excel and any
other programs that you are Opening password-protected cells in an Excel 2003 worksheet may
running. Click Start and select require some extra steps.
Microsoft Office 2003
range that are protected by that password.
Note that the error message is not really
accurate. It implies that you’ll need multiple
passwords to unlock all of the cells. In fact,
one password actually will allow access to
all the cells in the range if you enter it that
one time.
Error Message: “Microsoft Excel cannot
find a match.”
Translation: When you are trying to use
the Replace functions in Excel 2003, you may
see this error message even though the text
you are trying to replace does exist in the worksheet. The problem may occur when the active
cell in your worksheet doesn’t have the match
and you have also not followed the correct (if
somwhat confusing) sequence of steps before
you select Replace in the Find And Replace
dialog box.
Solution: There are three different ways
to make this function work properly. First,
you can use the Replace All command by
choosing the Edit menu and clicking Replace.
A dialog box with the Find What field will
display on your screen. Type the text you
want to replace in the Find What field (for
example, thier) and the substitution text (for
example, their) in the Replace With field.
Click Replace All, and all instances of the
original text will be replaced in your
worksheet. You can automatically find all
instances of your text and replace them
selectively by following the same steps as
above except that you’ll need to click Find
Next after you have landed on an instance of
the text that you don’t want to change.
Clicking Find Next will take you to the next
instance, and you can continue through the
worksheet until you have seen (and chosen
whether to correct) every instance. Click
Replace when you want to change the text,
and Excel will make your changes and automatically take you to the next instance.
Error Message: “Cannot find the file path
(or one of its components). Make sure the
path and filename are correct and that all
required libraries are available.” Generally
this message appears when Excel opens without displaying a workbook.
Translation: This problem can be caused
when the Ignore Other Applications setting is
active in Excel 2003. You may see this error
message when you double-click an Excel 2003
workbook to open it from Windows Explorer.
Excel may actually open, but the selected file
Most Frustrating Excel Error Message
lthough it may not be obvious, there are times when one cannot merge cells unless the
cells are of the same size. At first glance, it may not be apparent why the cells’ size
should matter, but there are cases when it does, especially when attempting to sort the cells.
A
Error Message:
“This operation requires the merged cells to be identically sized.”
Translation:
This error can occur for a number of reasons. Excel users often merge
cells when one piece of information pertains to several subheadings,
such as in a daily schedule. Excel 2003 requires all the cells in a range
to be the same size, and it won’t execute a Sort command if the cells are
different sizes. If you try to sort a range of cells in an Excel 2003 spreadsheet and some of the cells in the range are merged cells and some
aren’t or if all of the cells are merged but are of different sizes, you will
see this error. The error can also occur when you try to use the Paste
Special command in Excel 2003 if you are copying merged cells and
pasting them as Values Only within the same worksheet.
Solution:
If you encounter this error, you need to make sure that each cell in the
range you are working with has the same number of rows and columns
as the other cells in the range. Either merge the cells that are not
merged or split all the cells into their original sizes by first highlighting
the range of cells you want to change and then selecting the Format
menu at the top of the worksheet. Select Cells and click the Alignment
tab. Under the heading Text Control in the dialog box, there is an option
to Merge Cells. Click to place a check mark in this box to merge the cells
or remove the check mark to split the cells that you have highlighted. As
long as the cells are now equally sized, you’ll be able to complete the
operations on the range you have selected. ■
Cells must be the same size in Excel
2003 in order to sort properly.
does not. If you already have Excel 2003 open,
another instance of the program may start up.
This occurs because Windows Explorer opens
documents in all applications using DDE
(dynamic data exchange) messages to send
instructions to the source application (Excel, in
this case), telling the program to open and then
open the file that you selected. If the setting for
Ignore Other Applications is active in any of
your workbooks, Excel 2003 will ignore the
DDE messages from Windows Explorer, and
none of your workbooks will open when you
attempt to invoke them by double-clicking the
file icons. (Note that this does not affect opening files from within Excel itself. Having the
Ignore Other Applications setting active does
not preclude opening worksheet files from
within Excel.)
Solution:To verify that the Ignore Other
Applications setting is the cause of the problem and to correct it, select the Tools menu at
the top of your worksheet and click Options.
Select the General tab on the dialog box that
displays on your screen. Find the checkbox
next to Ignore Other Applications and click to
clear it. Click OK and close the dialog box. You
should now be able to open your Excel workbooks by selecting and double-clicking them
from within Windows Explorer. RS
by Bert Nixon
PC Errors • 115
Microsoft Office 2003
PowerPoint 2003
Work The Bugs Out Of Your Presentations
ffice 2003 errors are bad in general, but
PowerPoint 2003 errors are particularly
painful. Because this is presentation
software, errors often occur in front of an audience or while users are putting the finishing
touches on that important slideshow that is due
immediately. The good news is that many of the
most common PowerPoint 2003 error messages
are relatively simple to decipher, if not to fix.
Office 2003 only works on Windows 2000
and Windows XP, so all of the instructions
provided in this article apply only to those
operating systems.
O
Opening & Playing Files
Error Message: “PowerPoint can’t read
XX.ppt.”
Translation: You’ve tried to open a .PPT file
with the path and name listed in XX. The path is
the list of folders that leads to the folder where
the file is stored. For example, the path C:\POWERPOINT\BUSINESS means the file is stored in
the Business folder, which is in the PowerPoint
folder, which is on the C: drive. When this error
message appears, it means PowerPoint found the
listed file but can’t open it for viewing or editing.
Solution: This error message is one of the
worst you can encounter because it means your
.PPT file is damaged. In most cases there is no
way to open a damaged file, but Microsoft suggests trying to open the file in PowerPoint 2000
Sometimes you have to reconfigure
Windows to associate .PPT files
with PowerPoint.
116 • PC Errors
or earlier if possible. These
older versions of the software are not as strict as
PowerPoint 2003 when
it comes to reading
damaged files, so
there’s a slight
change they will
be able to open
it. Unfortunately,
opening a damaged
file can cause instability
in PowerPoint and possibly
even in Windows, so save all
open files and documents
and shut down all other programs before attempting this
trick and prepare for a crash.
Error Messages: “PowerPoint can’t read
XX.” Or “PowerPoint can’t open XX because
part of file is missing.” Or “PowerPoint can’t
open the type of file represented by XX.”
Translation: Didn’t we just cover this? Not
entirely. The three error messages above sometimes appear when users open a PowerPoint file
containing OfficeArt shapes created in previous
Most Common Error Message
Error Message:
“Microsoft PowerPoint has encountered a problem and needs to close.
We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
Translation:
PowerPoint 2003 is more stable than previous releases, but this error message indicates that a dreaded program crash has occurred. Hope you
saved your work before it was triggered!
Solution:
Usually there is nothing that you can do about this error message except
to try not to reproduce it the next time PowerPoint is launched. If the error
appears when you use Adobe Acrobat within PowerPoint, there is a more
tangible solution. Reboot the computer if necessary and, in Windows 2000,
click Start, expand Search, and click For Files And Folders. In Windows XP
click Start, click Search, and click All Files And Folders. Type pdfmaker.ppa
in the text field and click Search Now (Search in WinXP). If any hits appear
in the right pane, right-click them, click Rename, and give them a different
name, such as Pdfmaker.bad. Then visit the Adobe Reader download page
at www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html and use the provided
drop-down menus to download and install the latest version of the Adobe
Reader software, which should fix this problem within PowerPoint and other
Office applications. It’s a 15.9MB download, so dial-up modem users should
prepare for a relatively long download session. ■
Microsoft Office 2003
versions of Microsoft Office. PowerPoint 2003
uses a more complicated version of OfficeArt
and messes with the previously created shapes,
possibly causing file corruption even though the
original document was not corrupted.
Solution: Microsoft offers a downloadable
Critical Update that fixes this problem. Install
it and all other available patches by visiting the
Office Update Web site at office.microsoft
.com/OfficeUpdate/default.aspx and clicking
Check For Updates. If a Security Warning box
appears asking if you want to install and run
Office Update Installation Engine click Yes,
wait for the program to install, and make sure
Office 2003 Critical Update is selected in the
list that appears. Click Start Installation to
apply the patch.
Install the Office Update Installation
Engine if prompted to keep PowerPoint
as up-to-date as possible.
Error Message: “The file you are attempting to play has an extension that does not
match the file format. Playing the file may
result in unexpected behavior.”
Translation: Extensions are the three-character (sometimes four-character) abbreviations
appended to files so that Windows can differentiate among file types. They are always preceded by a period. For example, the extension
.TXT means the associate file is a text document,
and .PPT denotes a PowerPoint file. When this
message appears, PowerPoint is saying that the
extension for an embedded movie is invalid.
Solution: This error usually appears when a
movie file with the extension .MOV, denoting an
Apple QuickTime movie, is embedded in the
PowerPoint 2003 presentation. The only way
around this error is to convert the .MOV file to a
video format that PowerPoint 2003 can handle,
such as .AVI (Audio Video Interleave), .MPG
(Moving Picture Experts Group), or .WMV
(Windows Media Video). Windows doesn’t
come with tools to do this, but several thirdparty solutions are available. If you created the
video yourself, see if your editing package has
the capability to save the file in a compatible
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message:
“There is insufficient memory. Save the document now.”
Translation:
This message perplexes novices because it seems to contradict itself—if
the computer is out of memory, how can you save the document? In
reality this highlights the difference between the computer’s physical
RAM, which is used to run programs and store files that you open for
editing, and the computer’s storage devices (such as hard drives, where
it permanently stores data that you save).
Solution:
Do as the message says and save the open file immediately so it is
stored on your computer’s hard drive or another storage device. To continue working, try shutting down as many programs as possible that are
running in the background, as they consume RAM that could be allocated to the file you are working on. If that is impossible, and the file you’re
editing is simply too large to fit within your computer’s RAM, consider
adding more memory by adding extra RAM chips or replacing existing
modules with higher-capacity ones. Contact your PC’s manufacturer or
read the documentation that came with the system to determine what
type of memory it requires, as numerous varieties are available. ■
format. If the video was obtained elsewhere,
consider purchasing Apple’s QuickTime Pro
($29.99; www.apple.com/quicktime), which is
the software most commonly used to create
.MOV files. Use the software to load the file,
expand the File menu, click Export, and select
the format you want to convert to using the popup window that appears. Be sure to read the
documentation that comes with the software, as
several advanced options are available during
the conversion that impact video quality.
Error Messages: “The file XX is not available.” Or “The file XX is unavailable.” Or
“User does not have access privileges.”
Translation: Sometimes these messages
appear because files get moved, are damaged,
or are inaccessible because system administrators have not given you the right to access
them. If none of these possibilities apply to
your situation and these error messages
appear, there likely is a problem with the
antivirus software installed on your computer.
Solution: Visit your antivirus software
manufacturer’s Web site to obtain the latest
patches and virus definitions, or use any autoupdating features included in your antivirus
software to do the same thing. These errors
sometimes crop up if you install antivirus
software from a CD-ROM after installing
Office 2003; the antivirus software restricts
access to certain files because it flags them as
potential threats. Updating the software to the
latest version should solve this problem.
Error Message: “Windows Media Player
cannot find the specified file. Be sure the
path is typed correctly. If it is, the file does
not exist in the specified location, or the computer where the file is stored is offline.”
Translation: One of the multimedia files
referenced but not embedded in the PowerPoint presentation cannot be found. For example, if the presentation contains a link to a file
stored on another computer on a network, and
that computer is turned off, PowerPoint can’t
access the file for playback.
Solution: Most multimedia problems are
avoidable in the first place by embedding files in
the presentation (placing copies of the source file
directly in the presentation) instead of linking to
files that are stored externally. Embedded multimedia files can dramatically increase the storage
space a PowerPoint presentation requires because
they are bundled as part of the presentation file,
but this usually is an acceptable trade-off for the
peace of mind of knowing that this error message
won’t appear during a presentation.
If embedding such files isn’t a viable
option, double-check to see if the file linked
to the presentation is where you said it
would be, because if it was moved after you
saved the presentation the link will not
update automatically to reflect the change in
location. Also, if the multimedia file is stored
on a computer located elsewhere on a network, check to see if the network connection
is working properly and that the computer or
file server where the file is stored is turned
PC Errors • 117
Microsoft Office 2003
on. At the very least, try to save all files associated with a presentation on the computer that
will run the presentation so they can be
accessed locally, and update references to
those files within the presentation accordingly.
Error Message: “Cannot delete XX. This
file is in use by the following program: YY.
You must close the file before proceeding.”
Translation: File XX is open in program
YY, so it is impossible to delete. This message
can vary but always begins with “Cannot
delete XX.”
Solution: If the file you want to delete is
open in another program on your computer,
switch to that program, close the file, and
then delete the file. This error also appears if
file sharing is in use and someone else on
your network has the file open on his computer. Ask him to close the file and it becomes eligible for deletion.
Finally, this message also appears when
users attempt to delete files stored on another
computer on a network that they don’t have
permission to delete. Permissions are set by
network administrators, and if you are not
assigned delete privileges in the folder where
the file in question is stored, you will not be
able to get rid of it. Contact your network
administrator or the person who uses the
computer where the file is stored to see if
they can delete the file or grant you delete
privileges within that particular folder.
Error Message: “XX.ppt is currently in use.
PowerPoint can’t modify it at this time.”
Translation: Someone, somewhere (most
likely you) has the file you want to edit open
in another program or in another instance of
PowerPoint.
Solution: Shut down all of your open programs to make sure none of them has the presentation opened and try shutting down and
then restarting PowerPoint to see of the file
loads properly and can be edited and saved. If
this error message still appears, someone else
on your network has the file open on their
computer, so ask them to close it or expand the
File menu, click Save As, save the presentation
under a different name, and perform the edits
and saves on the new copy.
Error Message: “Windows cannot open
this file.”
Translation: Windows keeps a list of registered file types so it knows what program to
use when a user tries to open a file with a particular extension. For example, when Word is
installed, DOC files are registered to it so that
when users open a file with the .DOC extension, Word automatically launches and displays the file. All PPT files should be registered to launch PowerPoint when opened, but
sometimes other programs take the registration for themselves or the PPT registration is
otherwise disassociated with PowerPoint. The
end result is that Windows no longer knows
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message:
“The source application is busy and can’t respond immediately.”
Translation:
What’s next, “we’ll get back to you within two business days”? This
message sometimes appears when PowerPoint attempts to open an
embedded object that is already open in another program, but that
other program has generated a dialog box or error message box that
must be closed. Adding insult to injury, clicking Cancel in the PowerPoint error message box just causes the same error to appear again
and again because the software continually tries to open the inaccessible embedded object.
Solution:
The open dialog box or error message in the other application must be
closed before PowerPoint can open the embedded object. Click the pro
gram’s entry on the Taskbar to bring it to the forefront, and click OK or
Cancel to close the dialog box or error message associated with that program. If the Taskbar trick doesn’t work, hold down the ALT key and tap the
TAB key to cycle through open programs until you reach the one with the dialog box or error message, and proceed from there. Now, switch back to
PowerPoint and it should have no trouble opening the embedded object. ■
118 • PC Errors
which program is associated with PPT files
and lets the user know via an error message.
Solution: Microsoft provides three solutions
for solving this problem. First, try to manually
restore the association between PowerPoint and
the .PPT extension by clicking start, clicking My
Computer, expanding the Tools menu, and
clicking Folder Options. Select the File Types tab
in the Folder Options dialog box, scroll down
the Registered File Types list until you find PPT
(Microsoft PowerPoint Presentation), click that
entry, and click the Change button. When the
Open With box appears, scroll through the
Programs list until you see Microsoft Office
PowerPoint, click that entry, and click OK. If the
entry is not listed, click Browse, navigate to
C:\PROGRAM FILES\MICROSOFTOFFICE\
OFFICE 10, click Powerpnt.exe, and click Open.
Click OK, click Close, and PPT files will once
again fire up PowerPoint automatically when
you open them.
If that doesn’t work, try repairing your
PowerPoint installation. Open PowerPoint,
expand the Help menu, click Detect And Repair,
and click Start. Follow the prompts to repair the
installation, and keep your installation CD-ROM
handy because Windows may ask for it. If this
doesn’t work you must open the file directly by
launching PowerPoint, expanding the File
menu, and clicking Open. Navigate to the troublesome file and click Open.
Saving Files
Error Message: “XX is read-only. Do you
want to save changes to a different file name?”
Translation: Remember putting tape over
the holes in the top of your cassettes so nobody
You can’t modify read-only documents
unless you first revoke their read-only
status via the Properties dialog box.
Microsoft Office 2003
could accidentally record over them? The XX
read-only files referenced in this error message
are locked down in the same way; you can
open and view them, but you can’t edit them,
and neither can anyone else.
Solution: To see if a file is read-only, rightclick its icon, click Properties, select the General
tab, and look for a Read-Only checkbox in the
Attributes section. Remove the check mark to
make the file editable, or place a mark in the box
to make the file read-only. If that doesn’t work,
save the file using a different name as the error
message suggests, and work with the copy.
Printing Files
Error Message: “Windows cannot print due
to a problem with the current printer setup.”
Translation: This error message appears
along with a list of potential solutions that
usually work, unless you are trying to print a
very large (in terms of file size) PowerPoint
file. When that is the case, there usually is
nothing wrong with the printer, despite what
the error message says.
Compressing pictures is a great
way to dramatically reduce the file
size of a PowerPoint Presentation.
Solution: Sometimes pictures and graphics
embedded within a PowerPoint file are too
large and must be reduced in size before the
printer can handle the file. Microsoft recommends opening the file in PowerPoint 2003
and compressing pictures to reduce their file
sizes. Find the Picture toolbar and click
Compress Pictures. If the toolbar isn’t visible,
expand the View menu, expand Toolbars, and
click the Picture entry.
When the Compress Pictures dialog box
appears, make sure the All Pictures In Document radio button is selected, select the
Print radio button in the Change Resolution
section, and select the checkboxes next to
Compress Pictures and Delete Cropped
Areas Of Pictures. Click OK, click Apply, let
the utility do its work, and try printing the
file again.
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message:
“Microsoft PowerPoint ‘hlink.dll’ can’t be loaded.” Or “Microsoft
PowerPoint failed to load ‘hlink.dll’.”
Translation:
What’s a DLL, anyway? It’s short for dynamic-link library, and
PowerPoint relies on certain DLLs for proper operation, including
Hlink.dll. This file is installed along with Internet Explorer and controls
the way PowerPoint handles Internet hyperlinks.
Solution:
The only way to solve this problem is to repair or reinstall IE Close all
open programs, click Start, expand Find, and click Files or Folders. In
Windows XP click Start, click Search, and click All Files Or Folders.
Type hlink.dll in the search box and click Search (Find Now in Windows
2000). Wait for the search to complete and if Hlink.dll appears, rightclick it, click Rename, and change the name to something different, such
as Hlink.bad.
Now comes the tricky part of reinstalling or repairing IE, which will add a
fresh copy of Hlink.dll to your computer’s hard drive. This process varies
depending on the version of IE installed on your computer, so if you use
any version between 4.0 and 5.5, visit support.microsoft.com and search
for Knowledge Base Article 258893, entitled “Information About How To
Reinstall Internet Explorer.” If you use IE6.x on any OS other than WinXP,
visit the same site and look for Knowledge Base Article 293907, “How To
Uninstall Internet Explorer 6.” If you use IE6.x with WinXP, search for
Knowledge Base Article 318378, “How To Reinstall Or Repair Internet
Explorer And Outlook Express In Windows XP.” The WinXP fix involves
editing Windows’ Registry, so pay close attention to the provided steps and
back up all of your important files before proceeding. ■
Error Message: “Not enough printer memory available to print page.”
Translation: The size of the PowerPoint
presentation you are trying to print has outstripped the memory capacity of the printer,
stalling the print job indefinitely.
Solution: If the printer you’re using doesn’t
have enough physical RAM to handle the print
It doesn’t matter how much memory is
installed in your printer if Windows isn’t
configured to properly recognize it.
job, the only way to solve this problem is to add
to the printer’s memory by adding more memory or replacing the existing chip(s) with larger
ones. Look at the documentation that came with
the printer or contact the manufacturer to see if
this is possible and to find out how much it
costs, as printer memory is generally more
expensive than PC memory.
Sometimes this error occurs because of an
improper printer memory setting within
Windows, in which case it is easy to fix. In
Win2000 click Start, expand Settings, and click
Printers. In WinXP click Start, click Control
Panel, click Switch To Classic View on the left
if it isn’t already selected, and click Printers
And Faxes. Right-click the icon that corresponds to the printer generating the error message, click Properties, and select the Device
Settings tab. Look in the Printer Memory section to see if the number corresponds to the
amount of memory installed in the computer.
If it doesn’t match up, select the proper setting
and click OK. RS
by Tracy Baker
PC Errors • 119
Microsoft Office 2003
Outlook 2003
Failure To Communicate? We Can Help
mail has become such a crucial
communication tool that problems
with email software can seriously affect your business and
personal relationships. Outlook 2003 is far more
stable than previous versions of the software,
but it still has its
share of problems.
Oddly enough, some
of these flaws are byproducts of special
features included with
the software, but that’s
the nature of the beast in
these security-minded days.
E
Error Message: “Outlook
blocked access to the following potentially unsafe attachments: XX”
Translation: Attachments are files
(pictures, songs, or text documents) appended to email messages. Any file has the
potential to become an attachment, including
viruses and other malicious files, and Outlook
2003 is designed to block access to files that
have extensions commonly used by these
unwanted programs and are considered Level
1 threats. File extensions that have Level 1
threat status include .ADE, .ADP, .APP, .ASX,
.BAS, .BAT, .CHM, .CMD, .COM, .CPL, .CER,
.CRT, .EXE, .FXP, .HLP, .HTA, .INF, .INS,
.ISP, .JS, .JSE, .LNK, .MDA, .MDB, .MDE,
.MDT, .MDW, .MDZ, .MSC, .MSI, .MSP,
.MST, .OPS, .PCD, .PIF, .PRF, .PRG, .PST,
.REG, .SCF, .SCR, .SCT, .SHB, .SHS, .URL,
.VB, .VBE, .VBS, .WSC, .WSF, and .WSH. Files
with these extensions have the capability to
automatically execute scripts that issue a
series of commands to a PC without any further input from its user.
Solution: Before doing anything else, sic
your antivirus software on the blocked file to
make sure it checks out. If that isn’t possible
and the attachment looks suspicious, email the
person who sent the file to make sure they
meant to send it. If they don’t respond, assume
120 • PC Errors
the worst and don’t open
the file, or run a search on the file name using
Google (www.google.com). Viruses and other
malicious programs generally are sent using
the same file name or email subject line, and a
Google search for those elements can let you
know if they are associated with a virus or
have affected other computers.
If you are certain the attachment is legitimate and Outlook still blocks access to it,
It is possible to use your ISP’s outgoing email
server and use an outgoing email address that
has nothing to do with that server.
have the person who sent it change the extension to something Outlook accepts, such as
.DOC. When you receive the file, save it to
your Windows Desktop or a folder,
right-click its icon, click Rename,
and rename it using its original
extension. For example, if a
friend sends a file named
Friend.exe that is blocked,
have him change the
file’s name to Friend.doc
and resend it. When the
file shows up, use the
Rename command to
change its name back to
Friend.exe and execute
the file. We can’t stress
enough that you should
only use such methods
if you are absolutely
certain the file is not a
threat. If you have
even a speck of doubt
or suspicion, let Outlook do its job and forget
about opening the file.
Error Message: “Microsoft Outlook has
encountered a problem and needs to close.
We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
Translation: Something, somewhere,
has caused Outlook 2003 to crash. Open
email messages that you haven’t saved or
sent will be lost, but in the vast majority of
cases your .PST file (the big database that
stores all of your sent and received emails)
remains intact.
Solution: Think about what led up to the
crash and try to avoid doing the same thing
when Outlook 2003 loads. Did you open a
particular email file? Launch a different program? Access a particular menu setting?
Work around the problem for a bit to see if
the program remains stable, save any open
work (including files that are open in other
programs), and then try to reproduce the
problem. If Outlook consistently crashes
when you open another program but not at
other times, it is likely that the other program
is stealing system resources such as memory
Microsoft Office 2003
Most Common Error Message
Error Message:
“ ‘Sending and Receiving’ reported error (0x8004210B): The operation
timed out waiting for a response from the sending (SMTP) server. If you
continue to receive this message, contact your server administrator or
Internet service provider (ISP).”
Translation:
The outgoing email server is experiencing problems, or Outlook 2003 is
trying to contact the wrong server and is being blocked.
Solution:
“Time out” errors usually are the fault of the email server, so there is
nothing most users can do about it aside from calling their network
administrator or ISP to make sure they are resolving the problem. Many
times it is best to wait anywhere from several minutes to a few hours and
try to send email again. Most email server problems are resolved quickly
because they are usually software-related. Hardware-related problems
that require hard drive swapping, cable replacement, or similar tasks
take more time to resolve.
There is one other possibility regarding error messages related to sending
email. If you have a hosted Web site or Web mail service and use its outgoing mail servers instead of the outgoing mail servers provided by your
ISP, the ISP might purposely block the outgoing email. This has happened
to us in the past, and the only way to resolve it was to configure Outlook
2003 to use our Web site’s server for incoming mail but route all outgoing
mail through the ISP’s SMTP (Simple Mail Transfer Protocol) server.
Fortunately there is a way to do this without having to change the From line
in your email messages. Expand the Tools menu, click Options, select the
Mail Setup tab, and click E-mail Accounts. Select the View Or Change
Existing E-Mail Accounts button, click Next, click the name of the account
that is generating the error message, and click Change. When the E-mail
Accounts dialog box appears, leave the information in the Incoming Mail
Server field intact, but change the information in the Outgoing Mail Server
field to match your ISP’s SMTP server (look at its Web site or call technical
support to find out exactly what to enter here). In the E-Mail Address field,
type the name that you want to have appear in the From line of your messages, click Next, and click Finish. Now Outlook will send email from your
ISP’s server, but they will appear to come from your Web site’s server
because of the From line. Unfortunately, outgoing messages will be subject
to the restrictions imposed by the ISP, which generally caps maximum outgoing email sizes at 2MB to 3MB. ■
that are already allocated to Outlook, or is
tying into Outlook somehow. Try reinstalling
the application or updating it to its most
recent version using a patch downloaded
from the manufacturer’s Web site. If a particular message causes the crash, try forwarding
the message to a Web email account and
opening it there, or delete it entirely to see if
the problem goes away.
In some cases, especially when accessing
Outlook’s menus causes problems, there is a
problem with Outlook itself and the program
must be repaired or reinstalled. If you can get
the software to load at all, make a backup
copy of your email folders by expanding the
File menu, clicking Import And Export, clicking Export To A File, and clicking Next.
Select Personal Folder File (.PST), click Next,
and select the folders and subfolders you
want to include in the backup set. To include
them all, click Personal Folders, select the
Include Subfolders checkbox, and click Next.
Choose a name and location for the backup
file, select the radio button that corresponds
to the type of backup you’re creating (if an
older copy already exists, you can save time
by choosing Do Not Export Duplicate Items),
and click Finish.
With the backup safely tucked away, it’s
time to use Outlook 2003’s built-in repair tools
to try to fix the problem. Open the program,
expand the Help Menu, click Detect And
Repair, select whichever checkboxes you feel
are appropriate (we recommend selecting the
Restore My Shortcuts While Repairing checkbox but leaving the other checkbox unchecked),
and click Start. Keep your installation CD close
by, as Windows may ask for it during the
repair operation.
Detect And Repair can fix minor problems with
Outlook, but it only works if you can get the
program to load in the first place.
Error Message: “The file XX.pst could not
be found.”
Translation: Here, “XX.pst” refers to the
database that holds all received and sent email
messages. If Outlook can’t find the file, it can’t
open the file, so your Inbox, Sent Items, and
other folders will be empty.
Solution: This error message often occurs
when the .PST file you use is stored elsewhere on the network and the machine
where it resides is turned off or otherwise
disconnected from the network. Contact your
system administrator to see if they can remedy this problem or if it is possible to move
the .PST file to your computer so you can
access it locally.
If the .PST file is stored locally and this
error message appears, the file likely is corrupted. This is a dire situation because all of
If Outlook 2003 loses your user profile, use
Windows to create a new one so you can send
and receive email messages.
PC Errors • 121
Microsoft Office 2003
your email messages, contacts, and other
Outlook data is stored in this big .PST file,
but Outlook 2003 comes with an Inbox
Repair Tool that works fairly well in such
situations. In Windows 2000 click Start,
expand Search, and click For Files Or
Folders. In Windows XP click Start, expand
Search, and Click All Files Or Folders. Type
scanpst.exe in the search box and click
Search in Win2000 or Search Now in WinXP.
Wait for the file to appear in the search
results box and double-click its name to
launch the program.
Now you must type the name of the .PST
file that needs to be repaired, or click the
Browse button to navigate to the file manually.
Once it is selected, click Start and the repair
tool will scour the file for errors—and with any
luck will fix them, as well, so Outlook can
access the cleaned up .PST file.
Error Message: “System resources are critically low. Close some windows.”
Translation: System resources, such as
RAM and CPU clock cycles, that are needed to
run programs are available in limited amounts,
and once they are all used up error messages
like this are likely to appear.
Solution: Do what the message says and
close some open programs or windows. This
message is likely to appear on computers that
don’t have a lot of RAM installed but where a
user has several email messages open at the
same time for viewing or editing. Try closing
some to free up resources.
Microsoft also reports that this message
sometimes appears when users configure
Outlook with publicly accessible folders and
then add groups of users to the permissions
lists for those folders. To get around this problem, try adding the permissions individually.
Launch Outlook 2003, right-click the folder
where you added the group permissions, and
click Properties. Select the Permissions tab in
the resulting dialog box, click Add, click a
user’s name to select it, and click Add. Keep
selecting users and clicking Add to add them
to the permissions list and the error message
should no longer appear.
Error Message: “Outlook failed to start
correctly last time. Starting Outlook in safe
mode will help you correct or isolate a startup problem in order to successfully start the
program. Some functionality may be disabled in this mode. Do you want to start
Outlook in safe mode?”
122 • PC Errors
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message:
“Some items could not be deleted. They were either moved or already
deleted, or access was denied.”
Translation:
This message isn’t funny because of what it says; it’s funny because of
one of the conditions that trigger it—a user trying to delete 5,000 or more
messages at the same time.
Solution:
Sometimes this error message means exactly what it says, and users
must get permission from a network administrator or manually locate
moved files they want to delete. If it appears because you tried to delete
an absurd number of email messages, delete them in smaller chunks,
and try to keep your inbox tidier in the future to avoid such problems. ■
Most Cryptic Error Message
Error Message:
“The operation failed. An object could not be found.”
Translation:
What operation? What object? This message sometimes appears when
you click the Send And Receive button, and it means Outlook 2003 can’t
find the profile associated with your email account. Profiles contain personalized settings and other configuration information.
Solution:
The only way around this problem is to create a new profile. In Windows
2000 click Start, expand Settings, click Control Panel, and double-click
Mail. In Windows XP click Start, click Control Panel, click Switch To
Classic View if it isn’t in that mode already, and double-click Mail. Click
Show Profiles, click Add, give the profile a name (we recommend
“Outlook”), and click OK. Click Add A New E-Mail Account, click Next,
choose the type of email server your ISP, hosted site, or other email
provider uses, and click Next. Fill in the blanks with the information supplied by your ISP or other email provider (don’t forget to click More
Settings to adjust those extra options), and click Finish. Start Outlook
and it should load the new profile and run properly. ■
Translation: This is a rare example of an
error message that requires a yes or no answer.
When Outlook 2003 crashes or fails to load, the
program generates this error message when
you restart it. Safe Mode is a special operating
mode that disables several of Outlook’s features but at least lets the program load so you
can see existing emails and access other elements of the software. If this feature sounds
familiar, it should; Outlook’s Safe Mode is similar conceptually to Windows’ own Safe Mode.
Solution: We see this error message often,
and in the overwhelming majority of cases it is
safe to answer “no” and load Outlook 2003 in
its fully functional configuration. We’ve never
lost email messages or other data by choosing
this option, but if you don’t want to risk it, load
into Safe Mode and troubleshoot from there.
To see what features are disabled when
Outlook runs in Safe Mode, expand the Help
menu, click About Microsoft Office Outlook,
and click the Disabled Items button. Now you
can click individual items and click the Enable
button to turn them on individually and see if
they cause any problems. If they do, you may
have to open the Help menu and click Detect
And Repair to fix your copy of Outlook 2003.
As stated in a previous tip, keep the Office
installation CD nearby, as Windows sometimes needs it to perform the repairs. RS
by Tracy Baker
Online Communications
General Online Errors
We Demystify The Internet’s Cryptic Errors
oing online is supposed to be an
easy and trouble-free experience—just connect to an ISP and
enjoy seamless Web surfing anywhere in the world. That’s fine
when everything works properly. Web sites
can provide endless hours of interactive entertainment and education. Unfortunately, the
Internet is a global hodgepodge of end users,
Internet service providers, data carriers, and
network servers. User errors, service interruptions, unreachable Web servers, and other
foibles all contribute to occasional problems
that prevent the smooth access that we’ve
come to expect from the Internet.
G
You likely need user ID and password credentials
to access this Web site.
Although an average Internet user can’t prevent most problems, servers and Web browsers
do report trouble through the use of error messages. The kicker is that most error messages are
notoriously cryptic, using numbers and phrases
that rarely explain the underlying trouble—and
usually never outline corrective actions. But help
is finally available. We’ve collected a bounty of
common error messages and arranged them for
you in numerical and alphabetical order. We’ll
translate what these errors mean and show you
just what you can do about them.
Denied” or “Unavailable”). Many Web sites
restrict access using password protection.
Chances are that you’ve attempted to view a
restricted Web page (perhaps due to an incorrect URL), or the password that you used was
wrong or typed incorrectly.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make sure
that you’re trying to reach the correct Web page
(see the solution for the “Most Common Error
Message” sidebar). If the URL is correct and you
need a password to get in, recheck the password
as you type it, and take note of upper and lowercase characters. For example, a password such
as “LeMM^ng” can easily be typed as “lemming” if you forget to use the SHIFT key. If your
password is correct, but you still cannot access
the Web page, contact the site Webmaster to
check the status of your account. The account
may have been suspended or closed, or the password may have been reset. In either case, the
Webmaster can help restore access.
Error Message: “402 – Payment Required”
Translation: The desired Web page is probably available, but authentication (usually in the
form of a password and/or username) is needed
to access the site. However, logon credentials
may require payment to the site operator before
access is set up for you. For example, many Web
sites require a monthly subscription for access.
Solution: A valid subscription or access
payment will typically correct this problem by
establishing your account (often including a
valid password and/or username). Afterwards,
you should be able to access the desired site.
If you have an existing account but you still
Troubleshooting By The Numbers
Error Message: “401 – Unauthorized”
Translation: Also termed “401 – Authorization Required” (but some Web sites may
customize this message such as “Access
It’ll cost you to access this site, so be sure to
contact the Web site operator.
cannot access the site, contact the Webmaster to
check the status of your account—the account
may have been suspended or closed for issues
such as nonpayment (a credit card number has
been rejected). The Webmaster can usually
update payment information and reestablish
your access.
Error Message: “403 – Forbidden”
Translation: The Web server understands
the URL but refuses to provide access. This is
common when a Web page is intended for
You simply don’t have the authorization to view
this Web page or media.
personal or “in-house” use (and may be
restricted with a password). In other cases,
the Webmaster may have configured the
desired page improperly. For example, the
file may need to be assigned “read permission” for all users. Finally, the Web server
may be congested or down for maintenance,
prohibiting access to its contents.
Solution: Start with the basics and recheck
the correct URL (see the solution for “The Most
Common Error Message”). If the URL is correct
and you need a password to get in, recheck the
password as you type it, and take note of upper
and lowercase characters. Because congestion
can tie up a Web site, try reloading or refreshing the page with the browser’s Refresh button
(or try again later). If the problem persists, alert
the Webmaster for assistance.
Error Message: “404 – Not Found”
Translation: Also termed “The Requested
URL Was Not Found” or “File Not Found.”
PC Errors • 123
Online Communications
There is indeed a Web site located at that
address, but the particular HTML page
requested in the URL does not exist. The URL
may have been entered improperly (a basic
typo), or the page no longer exists.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make
sure that you’re trying to reach the correct
Web page (see the solution for the “The
Most Common Error Message”). In many
cases, the page’s content may still be available on the Web site, but the page itself may
have been renamed, moved, or added to
another page. Try poking around on the
Web site to see if you can find the content on
another page. For example, the home page
may offer a link to a new or updated page
that will help you.
Error Message: “406 – Not Acceptable”
Translation: Web browsers can tell the
Web server what kinds of data that the browser will accept. This error occurs because the
requested Web page could not be returned in a
language, character set, or data format that
your Web browser can use.
Solution: Most current Web browsers
accept a wide variety of data, so 406 errors are
very rare today. However, they still occur,
most often when trying to present a Web page
with a foreign character set. For example, a
U.S. client may see this error when attempting
to visit a Web site that uses Chinese or Korean
character sets. You may be able to update languages or character sets that will allow your
Your browser cannot display the contents of a
Web page, so try another language version of
the site (if possible).
browser to access the site properly. The easiest
solution is simply to access a different language or version of the Web site that offers
better compatibility with your browser. Check
the home page or contact the Webmaster for
links to alternate Web sites.
Error Message: “408 – Request Timeout”
124 • PC Errors
Translation: The Web server has dropped your connection. This occurs when there
has been too much time between the creation
of an IP (Internet Protocol) connection (a
Error Message: “409 – Conflict”
Translation: The request submitted by
your browser cannot be completed because it
conflicts with a rule established by the Web
server. This is not really a security
issue, but rather an applicationspecific conflict (such as when
using Microsoft FrontPage). For
example, if you attempt to upload
Error Message:
“No Response”
a file to a Web server, but that file
is older than the current file, the
Translation:
Also termed “No Response… Using A
version conflict will likely cause a
Previously Cached Copy” or “Site
409 error.
Unavailable.” Here is one of the more
Solution: You normally don’t
amusing error messages—how can
see this error unless you’re creatthere be no response when you get a
ing Web pages. If so, check the
response telling you that there’s been no
page versions that you’re uploadresponse? In reality, this simply means
ing against current versions. Also
that the desired Web server is not
recheck the configuration of your
responding to your request, probably
Web server (or contact your Web
because it is congested with excessive
hosting company for technical
traffic, or the server is not available due
support). Otherwise, you should
to failure or maintenance. If you’ve visited
contact the Webmasters of offendthe Web site previously, a cached copy
ing sites to make them aware of
of the page may appear in your browser.
the trouble.
Solution:
Recheck the URL and make sure
Error Message: “410 – Gone”
that you’re trying to reach the
Translation: When a Web page
correct Web page (see the solumoves, an older URL is often redition for “400 – Bad Request”).
rected to a new URL. A 410 error
Try reloading or refreshing the
indicates that the desired URL is
page with the browser’s Refresh
no longer available—this basically
button. The server itself may be
means the page has moved and
partially offline for maintenance,
there is no forwarding informain which case the best solution is
tion. This is common for URLs
to try the site again later. If the
that are intentionally time-limited
situation persists, notify the site’s
or orphaned.
Webmaster about the problem. ■
Solution: This error is similar
to 404 – Not Found, but a 410 error
“socket” between the browser and Web serv- suggests that the page may still exist in another) and the receipt of data on that connection. er location. However, the URL is effectively
The connection has been lost, and your useless without forwarding information.
browser must repeat the request.
Solution: Excess traffic loads on the client
system or Web server may be timing out the
connection and causing 408 errors. Try establishing a new connection by reloading or
refreshing the page with the browser’s
Refresh button (or try again later). If the trouble occurs with only a certain Web site, the
problem is likely at the Web-server end—
there is little you can do except try again
later. If the trouble occurs with any Web site,
you may have problems with TCP/IP (Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol) The server is expecting a request with a specific
on your client system, or there are access length, so you may not be able to access this
Web site.
problems with your local ISP.
Most Hilarious Error Message
Online Communications
Recheck the URL and make sure that you’re
trying to reach the correct Web page (see the
solution for “The Most Common Error
Message” sidebar). The page itself may have
been renamed, moved, or added to another
page. Go to the home page for that Web site
and see if you can find the content on another
page. For example, the home page may offer a
link to a new or updated page that will help
you.
Error Message: “411 – Length Required”
Translation: The Web server is looking for
specific HTTP “content length” information in
your browser’s request. No specific length
information was provided by the browser, so
the Web server returned a 411 error.
Solution: Data length information may be
needed when uploading data to the Web server but is generally never needed when retrieving information from a Web server. This error
is typically due to configuration or programming errors on the Web server end. You
(such as uploading a smaller file). Otherwise,
the Web server will need to be reconfigured to
accommodate the larger entity. You should
inform Webmasters of the offending sites
about the trouble.
There is a serious problem with the URL that you
tried, so check the URL or contact the Webmaster.
should contact the Webmasters of the offending sites to make them aware of the trouble.
Error Message: “412 – Precondition
Failed”
Translation: The Web server is looking for a
“precondition” specification in your browser’s
HTTP data. The Web server determined that the
required precondition was not met and returned
a 412 error.
Solution: This error is
typically due to configuration or programming
errors on the Web server
“407 – Proxy Authentication Required”
end. You should contact
Webmasters of the offendA proxy server is a server that sits between
ing sites to make them
a Web browser and an actual Web server. The
aware of the trouble.
proxy server reads all requests to the actual serv
Error Message: “414 – Request URI Too
Long”
Translation: A URI (Universal Resource
Identifier) is a generic term for all types of
names and addresses that identify Web
objects. A URL is just one type of URI. This
error occurs when the Web server determines
that the URL is larger (that is, too many
bytes) than the server can interpret. In some
cases, this error may suggest that a server is
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message:
Translation:
er and attempts to service each request itself—if
not, the request is forwarded to the actual server.
Proxy servers improve performance by caching
popular pages for certain groups of users and
are often used to enhance the security of a Web site.
When you get a 407 error, the URL resource is
available, but a connection requires the use of a
proxy server that also needs authentication cre
dentials. This error indicates that access has been
denied because you have not logged onto the
proxy server first or have logged on incorrectly.
Solution:
You’ll need to log into the appropriate proxy
server first and provide the proper credentials
(password and/or username) before you’re able
to proceed to the desired URL. This generally
means you’ll need a URL for the proxy server,
along with authentication credentials. Once
you’re successfully logged onto the proxy server,
you can usually navigate to the desired Web site
successfully. If you have trouble obtaining proxy
server information, contact the Webmaster for
detailed user instructions. ■
Error Message: “413 –
Request Entity Too
Large”
Translation: The Web
server has determined
that the data being sent
by the browser is simply
too large (that is, too
many bytes). This occurs
when file size limits are
exceeded. For example,
when uploading a very
large file (using a technique such as HTTP
PUT), a 413 error may be
returned when the Web
server sees that the file
size is too large.
Solution: This error is
typically due to configuration or programming
errors on the Web server
end. It may be possible to
shrink the request entity
A server has received an invalid response from an
upstream server, so try your request again later.
under attack by a client attempting to exploit
security holes.
Solution: This error is rare because Web
servers typically service ample length (2,048
or 4,096 characters). However, today’s use of
complex, dynamic Web content can result in
very long URL strings. Recheck the URL and
make sure that you’re trying to reach the
correct Web page (see the solution for “The
Most Common Error Message”). You might
also try a shortened variation of the URL to
reach the Web site, then try browsing to the
desired Web page from there. Finally, contact the Webmasters to make them aware of
the trouble.
Error Message: “415 – Unsupported
Media Type”
Translation: The Web server determines
that the client (browser) is requesting a URL
resource, but the actual media is not fully
compatible with the request. This often
occurs during a data transfer between the
Web server and client. For example, if you’re
uploading a file to the Web server using a
method that the Web server isn’t prepared to
accept, a 415 error is usually returned.
PC Errors • 125
Online Communications
Solution: This error is typically due to configuration or programming errors on the Web
server end. The Web server will need to be
reconfigured to accommodate the media
request or method. You should contact the
Webmasters of offending sites to make them
aware of the trouble.
Error Message: “500 – Server Error”
Translation: Also termed “500 – Internal
Error.” This is a general-purpose error produced by a Web server when a problem has
occurred that the server cannot identify further. Some fault has prevented the server from
fulfilling your request.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make sure
that you’re trying to reach the correct Web
page (see the solution for “The Most Common
Error Message”). Excessive traffic (such as a
congested server) can also cause server errors,
so try reloading or refreshing the page with
the browser’s Refresh button (or try again
later). If the problem persists, contact the
site’s Webmaster.
Error Message: “501 – Not Implemented”
Translation: The Web server does not
understand or support the HTTP method
used by the client. This is almost always the
result of an HTML coding problem or version
conflict and often occurs with Web pages that
include forms that can be submitted to the
Web server.
Solution: While this error is rare, there is
little you can do except to alert the Webmaster
about the problem.
Error Message: “502 – Bad Gateway”
Translation: Also termed “502 – Service
Temporarily Overloaded.” A server (not always a Web server) is working as a gateway to
fulfill your browser’s request. However, the
gateway server cannot receive an acceptable
response from an upstream server working on
your request. This typically means that the
gateway server is not communicating properly
with upstream servers.
Solution: Chances are that there are communication problems between the remote
gateway and its upstream servers. There is little you can do except to try again later or contact the Webmaster about the problem.
Error Message: “503 – Service Unavailable”
Translation: The Web server is temporarily overloaded or down for maintenance or
upgrade, but this temporary condition should
126 • PC Errors
Cryptic Messages
A Bad Request error probably means that you’ve
entered a URL improperly.
be resolved after some delay. Some servers
may refuse a connection entirely and produce
a different error code.
Solution: The Web server is functioning
(because it’s returning an error code), but its
content is unavailable at the moment. The
easiest solution here is to try reloading or
refreshing the page with the browser’s
Refresh button (or try again later). If the
problem persists, notify the Webmaster about
the situation.
Error Message: “504 – Gateway Timeout”
Translation: A server (not always a Web
server) is working as a gateway to fulfill your
browser’s request. However, the gateway
server did not receive a timely response from
an upstream server working on your request.
This typically means that the gateway server
is not communicating properly with upstream servers.
Solution: There is slow IP communication
problems between the remote gateway and
its upstream servers. There is little you can
do except try the site again later or contact
the Webmaster about the problem.
Error Message: “505 – HTTP Version Not
Supported”
Translation: This error occurs because
the Web server does not support the HTTP
protocol used by your Web browser. For
example, the server will return a 505 error if
your browser attempts a request using HTTP
1.0 or 1.1 but the Web browser only supports
HTTP 0.9.
Solution: Most Web browsers assume
that servers support HTTP 1.x, and very few
Web servers will risk the poor security and
performance found with older HTTP versions. Chances are that the Web operator will
need to upgrade the Web server software, so
contact the Webmaster about the situation.
Error Message: “A Request To The
Host Is Taking Longer Than Expected”
Translation: This is usually a result of
congested Internet traffic. The Web server is
busy or cannot respond to your request in a
timely manner. You may notice that other
online features (such as email or newsgroup
access) are also taking a very long time.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make
sure that you’re trying to reach the correct
Web page (see the solution for “The Most
Common Error Message”). Also try other
Web sites—if the error only occurs with one
site, that Web server may be congested, so try
reloading or refreshing the page with the
browser’s Refresh button (or try again later).
If the trouble seems to hit every Web site you
try to visit, the problem may be on your PC.
One quick trick is to reboot your computer
and clear the browser cache. For Internet
Explorer 6.x, open the Internet Options dialog from the Tools menu, then click Delete
Cookies, Delete Files, and Clear History.
Now try the request again. You might also
try closing any unneeded applications (especially bandwidth-demanding applications).
Error Message: “Bad File Request”
Translation: There is probably a programming problem with a Web form. Form
elements include features such as text boxes,
drop-down menus, checkboxes, and so on.
Web browsers support industry-standard
form elements, but errors occur when the
Web page creator made a mistake in their
form programming, or incorporated nonstandard form elements to the Web page.
Solution: Congestion across the Internet or
at the remote Web server can occasionally
cause this trouble, so try reloading or refreshing the page with the browser’s Refresh button
A server or DNS (Domain Name System) lookup
error often just says the page cannot be displayed.
Online Communications
(or try again later). If the problem persists, contact the Webmaster about the problem.
Error Message: “Cannot Add Form
Submission Result To Bookmark List”
Translation: This error occurs when you
attempt to save the results of a form-based
search engine (such as WebCrawler or AltaVista) as a bookmark. The problem is that the
URL is not valid even though it may appear to
be just fine.
Solution: You can often work around this
error by saving the search results as an HTML
document on your local hard drive. Use the
Save As command under the browser’s File
menu to save the search page, and then try
adding the saved page to your bookmarks.
CGI (Common Gateway Interface) scripting in
the search results page can sometimes interfere
with this tactic, so it is not always successful.
(CGI is a standard for how servers exchange
information with applications under the Web’s
protocol HTTP. Typical uses for CGI include
the forms that users fill out on Web sites.)
Error Message: “Can’t Parse HTTP”
Translation: This error means that your
Web browser cannot process the URL that
you’ve entered. For example, most browsers
allow you to omit the “http://” portion of a
URL, though some browsers require it.
Solution: See the solution for “A Request
To The Host Is Taking Longer Than Expected.”
Error Message: “Connection Refused By
Host”
Translation: The Web server has refused
to establish a connection (socket) with your
browser. You may be prohibited from accessing the requested URL, or the URL is password protected.
Solution: See the solution for “403 –
Forbidden.”
Error Message: “Failed DNS Lookup”
Translation: Also termed “No DNS
Entry.” The Internet’s DNS (Domain Name
System) cannot translate the URL address
into a corresponding IP address. Since DNS
servers are typically redundant, the problem
is more likely to be an incorrect URL on your
end, or a congested Web server on the remote
end. The Web server may also have failed or
is down for maintenance.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make
sure that you’re trying to reach the correct
Web page (see the solution for “The Most
Common Error Message”). The Web server
may be overloaded or congested with
Internet traffic, so try reloading or refreshing
the page with the browser’s Refresh button
(or try again later). In rare cases, there may
be problems with your Internet software or
connection. Try rebooting the PC and restarting the connection and browser software.
Error Message: “File Contains No Data”
Translation: You’ve accessed a valid URL,
but the contents of that Web page are empty.
This can occur when the page is being updated or is being used as a placeholder, awaiting
future content from the site operator.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make
sure that you’re trying to reach the correct
Web page (see the solution for “The Most
Common Error Message”). Try reloading or
refreshing the page with the browser’s
Refresh button (or try again later). If the situation persists, contact the site’s Webmaster
about the problem.
Error Message:
“Helper Application Not Found”
Translation: Also
termed “Viewer Not
Found,” “No Helper
Application Defined,” or “Unknown
File Type.” This error
means your browser
did not recognize a
file type that you’re
attempting to download. For example,
files such as RealAudio, MPEG, or
PDF files need a
plug-in viewer capable of decoding and
using the file.
Solution: You
will need to download and install an
application that is
appropriate for each
file type. For example, you would need
Adobe Acrobat Reader to view PDF files.
The easiest solution is
to save those sound
or video files to disk
first and then obtain
and install the corresponding application for
your browser as soon as possible.
Error Message: “Host Unavailable”
Translation: The remote Web server is
down or otherwise offline. This may be as simple as a failed connection, or the server may be
defective, or it may just be getting an update.
Solution: Try reloading or refreshing the
page with the browser’s Refresh button (or
try again later). If the problem persists, contact the Webmaster about the situation.
Error Message: “Host Unknown”
Translation: Also termed “Unable To
Locate Host” or “Unable to Locate Server.”
You cannot establish a connection with the
Web server. This error occurs because the Web
server is not available due to a failure or maintenance, there is trouble with your Internet
connection, or you typed the URL improperly.
Solution: Recheck the URL and make
sure that you’re trying to reach the correct
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message:
“405 – Method Not Allowed”
Translation:
For each particular resource type, HTTP allows
for a variety of actions (or “methods”) between a
Web server and a browser. These methods
include Options, Get, Head, URL, Post, Put,
Delete, Trace, Connect, and more (depending on
the HTTP version in use). Web servers can be
configured to allow or reject any method. For
example, your ‘read-only’ Web server may disallow
PUT and DELETE methods. When your Web
browser tries to use a method for obtaining a
Web resource that the server prohibits, an error
occurs. Bottom line—you cannot exchange
desired data with the Web server.
Solution:
You normally don’t see this error unless you’re
creating Web pages. In most cases, 405 errors
arise when using POST (power on self test)
methods—you may be trying to provide input on
your Web site (such as a form), but not all ISPs
allow POST methods needed to process that
form. You can try GET commands in place of
POST commands. In short, most 405 errors can be
corrected by adjusting the configuration of your
Web server (to allow POST methods, for example).
If you see a 405 error on another Web site, contact
the site’s Webmaster for corrective action. ■
PC Errors • 127
Online Communications
Web page (see the solution for “The Most
Common Error Message”). Try reloading or
refreshing the page with the browser’s
Refresh button (or try again later). If the
problem persists, check your Internet connection by trying other Web sites or functions
such as email. Always-on connections may
need to be rebooted by cycling power to the
cable or DSL modem.
Error Message: “Network Connection
Was Refused By The Server”
Translation: Also termed “Too Many
Connections – Try Again Later,” “Too Much
Network Traffic,” or “Too Many Users.” Every
server has a limit to the number of requests it
can handle at any given moment. Chances are
that the server is just too busy because it’s servicing the maximum number of requests.
Solution: The best solution is to try reloading or refreshing the page with the browser’s
Refresh button (or try again later). If the trouble persists, the Web server may require additional bandwidth—contact the Webmaster
about the problem.
Error Message: “NNTP Server Error”
Translation: You are trying to read or
post messages with a newsgroup. Your ISP
provides the NNTP (Network News Transfer
Protocol) server that supports newsgroup
operations. This error occurs because you’re
unable to connect to a Usenet newsgroup.
Solution: The newsgroup URL may have
been typed improperly. Recheck the URL and
make sure that you’re trying to reach the correct newsgroup (see the solution for “The
Most Common Error Message”). There may
also be an issue with the newsgroup itself.
Try some other newsgroups (if possible). If
only one newsgroup fails, the trouble may be
on the remote end. If any newsgroup fails,
check your software settings or contact your
ISP for assistance.
Error Message: “Permission Denied”
Translation: This error typically occurs
when attempting to upload or download a
file, often through FTP. You may not have
authority to perform your file transfer, or the
desired file does not exist. For example, you
may be trying to download a file from a
directory that you do not have access to. In
some cases, the server may simply be too
congested to handle your request.
Solution: Always start by verifying the
exact file name that you’re trying to access
128 • PC Errors
(file names are often case-sensitive). In the
event of congestion, try your access at another time when the remote server may be less
congested. If the problem persists, contact the
system administrator for assistance. You may
need adjustments to your access rights.
Error Message: “TCP Error”
Translation: Also termed “TCP Error
Encountered While Sending Request To
Server.” Data is exchanged across the
Internet using TCP (Transmission Control
Protocol). This error occurs when there is
trouble in TCP exchanges between your
browser and the remote server.
Solution: Try other Web sites to confirm
that your browser is working. If it’s not,
you may need to
reinstall TCP/IP on
your computer. If
other Web sites
respond normally,
Error Message:
there is probably a
hardware fault preTranslation:
venting ac-cess to
the Web server. Try
again later, or contact the Web-master
(or ISP) about the
problem.
Solution:
Error Message:
“Transfer Interrupted”
Translation:
Your Web browser
attempts to complete
a page according to
the HTML and other
in-structions contained in that page’s
coding. This error
generally oc-curs
when the re-quest
for graphic elements
becomes too corrupted for the Web server to process.
Solution: Try reloading or refreshing
the page with the
browser’s Refresh
button (or try again
later). If the problem
persists, contact the
Webmaster concerning the problem.
Error Message: “You Can’t Log On
As An Anonymous User”
Translation: Some FTP sites prohibit
anonymous users or only allow for a limited
number of anonymous users. This error
appears when you attempt an FTP anonymous logon, or the site has already reached
its anonymous limit.
Solution: Try accessing the site again
later when you expect it to be less congested.
If you have a valid user ID and password, try
accessing the site manually using an FTP
software utility. If you need anonymous
logon, contact the system administrator. RS
by Stephen J. Bigelow
Most Common Error Message
“400-Bad Request”
The URL that you’re trying to reach is typed
improperly or does not exist. This means
you’ve typed the URL improperly (a basic
typo), the server does not recognize the URL,
or you do not have the authorization to access
the desired URL.
Check the URL to see that you’ve entered it
completely and correctly—this can be a real
challenge for long or complex URLs. It may be
easier to cut and paste the URL from a document file or email directly into the address line
of your Web browser. Pay particular attention
to the placement of special characters such
as equal signs, colons, percent signs, question marks, and ampersands (there should be
no spaces in a URL). Some Web sites distinguish upper and lowercase letters, so be sure
to capitalize where necessary. If the URL is
exactly right, the server may be congested,
so just try it again later. ■
The file you requested does not exist, so check
your URL and try again.
Online Communications
Revive
Your Network
Troubleshoot Network & Internet
Connection Problems
lthough new operating systems and
networking devices make connecting to
the Internet or a local network a much
easier chore than it was only a few years ago,
users still run into the occasional glitch.
Unfortunately, the error messages that stand
between you and the Internet are still cryptic
and unhelpful. We’ll help you understand
some of the most common messages and fix
the problems they identify.
A
Modem Errors
Error Message: “The modem VxD is not
present. Please refer to the troubleshooting section in the User’s Guide.”
Translation: You may see this message if
you install Windows 98SE on a computer that
has a winmodem. Unlike standard modems,
winmodems (also called software modems) use
your computer’s processing power to translate
analog signals to digital signals. If an IRQ (interrupt request line) conflict occurs, Win98SE will
display this message during installation. You
may also see this message if you haven’t
installed your winmodem’s drivers.
Solution: Click OK to close the error message and then complete the installation. Once
Windows starts and the Desktop appears,
right-click the My Computer icon and then
select Properties from the context menu. Click
the Device Manager tab and scroll to Modems.
Double-click Modems and then click your
modem. Click the Remove button and then
click OK. When you restart your computer,
Win98SE will automatically install the
modem’s drivers. Keep your system’s CDs
handy in case the wizard asks for a CD.
Error Message: “Error 678 – There Was
No Answer”
Translation: If your modem dials a long
distance number to connect to your ISP and
you receive this message, the phone line
probably doesn’t have long distance service.
A voice message asking you to enter a long
distance access code causes the error to
appear. You won’t hear the message when
you dial the number via the modem, but you
can hear the message by using a telephone to
dial the number.
Solution: You can solve the problem by
adding a long distance phone service to the
phone line, but keep in mind that you’ll pay
for both the long distance service and your ISP
fees. If your ISP doesn’t offer a local dialup
number, you may want to switch to a local ISP
or another ISP that offers local numbers.
Error Message: “Error 797 – The Modem
Could Not Be Found”
Translation: Windows 2000/XP displays
this message if the OS can’t find your modem’s
drivers. It may also display this message if
your external modem powered on after the
computer booted.
Solution: If you have an external modem
and powered on your PC before your modem,
shut down the computer and the modem and
then power on your modem before powering on
your computer. If this doesn’t solve the problem, or if you have an internal modem, you may
need to reinstall the modem’s drivers. Rightclick the My Computer icon, select Properties
from the context menu, click the Hardware tab,
and then click the Device Manager button.
Double-click Modems, right-click your modem,
and then select Update Drivers.
You may see the error message while using
the RAS (Remote Access Service) feature,
which lets you dial into a computer to retrieve
files remotely. Enter the Device Manager, double-click Network Adapters, right-click RAS
Async Adapter, select Properties from the context menu, and then click Update Drivers.
Error Message: “Rundll32.exe Has
Performed An Illegal Operation”
Translation: If your PC runs Windows 95,
this message may appear when you uninstall a
modem. Win95 generates the message if it tries
to update its modem list before it completely
removes your modem from the list.
Solution: You can avoid this message by
using the Device Manager or Modem
Properties to uninstall the modem. (If you
leave both windows open while uninstalling
the modem, the error message may appear.)
To uninstall a modem via the Device Manager,
right-click My Computer, click Properties,
click the Device Manager tab, double-click
Modems, and then click your modem. Click
Remove and then click OK in the Confirm
Device Removal dialog box. To uninstall a
modem via Modem Properties, click Start,
Settings, Control Panel, and then double-click
Modems. Click the appropriate modem under
The Following Modems Are Set Up On This
Computer, and then click Remove.
Broadband Errors
Error Message: “Your Network Configuration Is Not Complete”
Translation: This message may appear
when you use Win98SE’s ICS (Internet Connection Sharing) to share your Internet connection with other computers. The error message
means either that your computer has only one
network card or that one of the two network
cards is not correctly installed.
Solution: ICS requires a computer that has
two functional network cards. The first network card connects to your broadband Internet
connection (such as a cable modem) and the
second network card connects the PC with
PC Errors • 129
Online Communications
which you want share the connection. If your
PC has only one Ethernet port, add another
Ethernet network card. If you already have two
Ethernet ports, reinstall the cards’ drivers.
(Download the latest drivers from the Web.)
Error Message: “Fatal Exception OE
At 0028:c001545a; Exception OE At
0028:c81oa23a In vxd AFVXD (01)
+0000164a called from 0028:c00457ec in
vxd ND15 (01) + 0000 4860”
Translation: You may encounter this error
while surfing the Internet if you have a cable
modem and Windows 98.
Solution: You’ll need to edit the Windows
Registry to fix this problem. If you damage the
Registry, Windows may not start (in which case
you might need to reinstall Windows), so be
sure to back up the Registry before you change
its contents. To back up the Registry, click Start,
Run, and then type regedit in the Open field.
Next, click File, Export. Enter a name for your
backed up Registry in the File Name box, and
then select the folder in which you want to save
the Registry. Click the All radio button under
Export Range, and then click Save.
Once you have backed up the Registry, click
Start, Settings, Control Panel, and then doubleclick the Add/Remove Programs icon. Click
the Windows Setup tab, double-click Communications, and then remove the check from
the Dial-Up Networking box. Click OK, and
then click OK again when the Dial-Up
Networking dialog box appears. Restart your
computer.
Next, reenter the Registry and then delete
all WinSock2 keys from these Registry folders:
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\VXD\AFVXD
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\VXD\DHCP
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\VXD\MSTCP
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\VXD\Winsock
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\VXD\Winsock2
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\Winsock
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\Winsock2
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: Invalid page fault in module: kernel32.dll At 015f:bff766f6
Translation:
Generally speaking, users only encounter networking errors when they try
to connect to the Internet or a network. However, you might find yourself
facing a modem problem while using Microsoft Windows Media Player.
When this error occurs, a blue screen displays the above error message,
which indicates that your modem does not have the correct drivers.
Solution:
Fortunately, fixing the problem is much easier than deciphering the cryptic
message. Chances are, the modem manufacturer’s Web site offers driver
downloads. If so, determine your modem’s model number and then download the appropriate drivers from the Web site.
To install new drivers, right-click My Computer, click Properties, click
the Hardware tab, and then click Device Manager. Double-click
Modems, right-click your modem, and then
select Update Driver from the context menu. In
the Hardware Update Wizard, click the Install
From A List Or Specific Location (Advanced)
radio button and then Next. Click the Don’t
Search. I Will Choose The Driver To Install
radio button, and then click Next. Select your
modem from the Models list and then click
Have Disk. When the Install From Disk dialog
box appears, click Browse, navigate to your
new drivers, and then click Open. Complete the
wizard to install the new drivers. ■
• HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\
CurrentControlSet\Services\RemoteAccess\
Authentication\SMM_Files.
Close the Registry. Click Start, Settings,
Control Panel. Double-click Add/Remove Programs, click Windows Setup, double-click
Communications, and then check the Dial-Up
Networking box. Click OK and restart your PC.
Error Message: “Your network is configured such that you cannot make phone
calls” or “You cannot make phone calls
or start voice or video conversations
with Windows Messenger”
Translation: One of these messages may
appear if you have a Linksys EtherFast cable/
DSL modem that has version 1.38 or older
firmware. The problem prevents network
users from using Windows Messenger’s Voiceand Video Conversation features.
Solution: You can resolve this problem by
downloading the latest firmware version from
Linksys. Visit www.linksys.com/support.
Click Technical Support, Product Pages, and
select Driver/Firmware from the Search For
dropdown menu. Next, select your model
and OS, and click Firmware. Affected Linksys models include BEFSR11, BEFSR41,
BEFSR41W, BEFSR81, BEFSRU31, BEFSX41,
BEFVP41, and HPRO200.
Error Message: “RawESR.sys Cannot Be
Found”
Translation: This message may appear if
you have WinXP and your ISP requires a username and password. SBC DSL service users
may encounter this error.
Solution: To create a new DSL connection,
click Start, Control Panel, and then doubleclick Internet Options (if you don’t see this
icon, click Switch To Classic View on the left to
display Control Panel icons). Click Setup to
start the New Connection Wizard and then
click Next. Click the Connect To The Internet
radio button, and then click Next again. Click
the Set Up My Connection Manually radio button, Next. Click Connect Using A Broadband
Connection That Requires Using A User Name
And Password and then click Next. Enter a
name for your connection in the ISP Name
box, click Next, and then enter your connection’s username and password. Click Next,
check the Add A Shortcut To This Connection
To My Desktop box, and then click Finish. You
can use the shortcut to access the Internet. RS
by Joshua Gulick
130 • PC Errors
Online Communications
Browser Errors
You can view the status of the connection by
placing your pointer over the icon in the
System Tray.
What You Can Do
When The Surf’s Not Up
Error Message: “Internal Page Fault”
Translation: If you’re visiting a site that
uses Shockwave or Flash, as an increasing
number of sites do these days, you may see
this message. The Shockwave or Flash player
you have is old and not compatible with
Netscape.
Solution: Go to the Macromedia site at
www.macromedia.com and download and
install the latest version of Shockwave or
Flash. Also, be aware this message may appear
when using other software that is not current,
and you may need to download another program, such as an image viewer.
homas Jefferson once said, “Ignorance is
preferable to error, and he is less remote
from the truth who believes nothing
than he who believes what is wrong.” Although Jefferson was talking about beliefs in
the 18th century, anyone who has ever used a
computer in this century can identify with the
sentiment. There you are, happily surfing the
Web, and suddenly the error message Iexplore
Caused An Invalid Page Fault In Module
Urlmon.dll pops up. Say what? Many error
messages are so confusing or misguiding that they lead you further away
from understanding what’s really
going on.
But error messages are a fact of Web
browsing life, and deep down you
know ignorance isn’t the best way to
handle them. Understanding what an
error message means and how to solve
the problem will lead to more productive surfing in the future. So here are
interpretations of the more common
error messages and solutions to keep
them from reappearing.
T
System Tray, at the far right of the Taskbar.
Restart the setup process by launching the
Netscape installation file.
Error Message: “XX Could Not Be
Found. Please check the name and try
again.“
Translation: The XX represents the Web
site you’re attempting to connect to, such as
www.smartcomputing.com. If this message
occurs in a dialog box when you’re launching
Netscape
Error Message: “Error 214, File
Not Found”
Translation: This message sometimes appears when you’re installing
Netscape 7. (It also appears occasionally when installing earlier versions of
Netscape, including Netscape 6. We
recommend you install the most recent
version of the software, however.) The message may appear if you downloaded the software during a server or connection glitch or if
you had already installed some of the
Netscape plug-ins prior to attempted Netscape
7 installation.
Solution: Exit the setup process and completely turn off your PC. Restart your computer. Once the startup is complete, exit any running programs, including virus-protection
software. These programs are located in the
the software, it’s possible that your Internet
connection is down. Each browser provides its
own error message for this situation, although
the other browsers’ messages tend to be more
self-explanatory. (For instance, AOL users see
“Unable to connect to the AOL Service.”)
Solution: Yes, it’s fairly obvious; check
your Internet connection. Make sure all cables
and lines are securely connected, and if you’re
on a dial-up connection, ensure the phone is
not in use by another person or application.
Error Message: “Invalid Page Fault”
Translation: This message occurs
in multiple situations. One common
instance is when you’re launching
Netscape by clicking your profile in
the Profile Manager. Another is when
you’re printing a Web page.
Solution: In the first situation, it’s
possible you have a corrupted plugin associated with your profile. Head
to wp.netscape.com/plugins/manag
er.html to view your plug-ins; here
you can download and reinstall
them. In the second case, make sure
printer drivers are up-to-date by contacting the manufacturer. If they are,
your cache may be full. Empty it by
going to the Edit menu, selecting
Preferences, clicking Advanced, and
clicking Cache. Select the Clear Cache
(version 7) or Clear Disk Cache (version 6) button. Click OK.
Error Message: “JavaScript
Error”
Translation: HTML programmers commonly use JavaScript, a scripting language that spices up Web pages. For example,
JavaScript makes possible image rollovers, or
characters that change when you place the
pointer over them. If JavaScript is not enabled
in your browser, this message may appear in a
dialog box, and your only possible action is to
click OK.
Solution: Enable JavaScript by going to the
Edit menu and selecting Preferences. In the
Category box on the left, click the Advanced
PC Errors • 131
Online Communications
heading and then the Scripts & Windows (version 6.x) or Scripts & Plugins (version 7.x) subheading. Place a check mark in the Navigator
checkbox under Enable JavaScript For. Click
OK. Depending on your version, you may be
able to turn off JavaScript error messages
entirely—although the error will still exist—by
choosing the Debug subheading in the
Preferences window and unchecking Show
Strict JavaScript Warnings.
Translation: You’re visiting a Web site
that is attempting to redirect you to another
page, but the redirection is not happening.
This is likely because you have blocked cookies the server is trying to place on your hard
disk; servers may need to place cookies before
they complete a redirection. When the server
Mozilla
Error Message: “Mozilla cannot use
the profile ‘default’ because it is in
use. Please choose another profile or
create a new one.”
Translation: This message may appear
when you begin to launch Mozilla, even
though it is apparently contradictory, as it
implies your profile is in use but you
haven’t yet opened the software program. That’s because you probably have
Netscape already running. Mozilla shares
many files with later versions of Netscape,
including profiles, and it recognizes the Downloading the latest version of Shockwave can cut
down on Internal Page Fault errors in Netscape.
open profile.
Solution: The easy solution is to close
Netscape and log onto Mozilla. But doing so cannot place a cookie, it tries repeatedly until
may lead to lost bookmarks, email, or other this error message appears.
settings in either program. We recognize that
Solution: Make cookie settings less restricMozilla users as a group tend to be sophisticat- tive. You don’t have to do this globally; you
ed Internet users, and you may use multiple can do it individually by site. Go to the Tools
browsers. This should be fine as long as you menu, choose Cookie Manager, and select
use separate profiles, so follow the on-screen
instructions for creating a new profile and use
it each time you use Mozilla.
Error Message: “Operation Timed Out”
Translation: When you attempt to connect
to a slow Web site, if the site does not load in a
“reasonable” amount of time—Mozilla’s
default value is 30 seconds—this message
appears.
Solution: Increase the amount of time
Mozilla will contact a Web site. Type
about:config in Mozilla’s address bar to call
up a list of Mozilla’s options. Scroll down until
you see the option network.http.connect.timeout. Highlight the option, right-click it, and
select Modify. In the Enter Integer Value dialog box, type the desired amount of time, in
seconds, and click OK.
Error Message: “Redirection Limit For
This URL Exceeded. Unable To Load
The Requested Page.”
132 • PC Errors
Mozilla and Netscape recognize the same
profiles. This message may mean you
already have a version of Netscape running.
Allow Cookies From This Site. When the
Cookie Permissions Changed dialog box
appears, click OK.
Error Message: “Java Not Installed” or
“Java Not Enabled”
Translation: You may think that Java is
working perfectly fine, but apparently Mozilla
disagrees.
Solution: First, select Preferences from the
Edit menu, click the Advanced category, and
make sure Enable Java is checked. Click OK.
Open your computer’s Control Panel and double-click the Java Plug-in icon (in Windows
XP, use the Classic view). Select the
Browser tab. Make sure Mozilla is checked
and click Apply. This should take care of
the problem. To confirm, type about:plugins in Mozilla’s address bar and view the
various Java Plug-in entries (scroll down to
see the entire list); each will have Yes under
the Enabled box.
Opera
Error Message: “Your Current Login
Session Is Expired, Please Re-Login
Before Using Our Services.”
Translation: You may have already discovered Opera handles cookies differently
than most other browsers. In order to log
onto a Web site, you must enable cookies in
your browser or the above message
appears. (Opera is working on changing
this feature in future browser versions.)
Solution: From the File menu, click
Preferences. Select Privacy and place a check
mark in the box next to Enable Cookies.
Sometimes, however, even when cookies are
enabled, you may receive an error message
that states your browser doesn’t support cookies. If so, according to the folks at Opera, the
reason this happens is the remote server is
looking for Netscape or Internet Explorer and
doesn’t recognize Opera. There’s not much
you can do to solve this problem.
Error Message: “Could Not Find
Acrobat External Window(s) Handler.”
Translation: You’re trying to view an
Adobe Acrobat file—one with a PDF extension—but you get this message instead. You
likely either do not have the Adobe Acrobat
Reader, or the reader is corrupt.
Solution: Your best bet is to install a clean
copy of the software. To uninstall the Adobe
Reader, use the Add/Remove Programs option in your Control Panel. Then, go to
www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/readstep2.html and download the latest copy. There
are also several workarounds. You can open
Adobe Reader first and then try to open the
PDF file in Opera. Or, disable Web Browser
Online Communications
Integration in Adobe Reader so that the file
automatically opens in Adobe Reader rather
than a browser. In Adobe Reader 6.0 (instructions vary slightly in earlier versions), select
Preferences from the Edit menu. Click Internet.
Deselect Display PDF In Browser. Click OK.
Error Message: “Upgrade Your
Browser” or “Browser Unsupported”
Translation: Developers design Web sites
with particular browsers in mind. If you’ve ever
experimented with Netscape or IE, you may
have noticed some sites look different in the
two browsers. Unfortunately for Opera users,
some designers write browser detection script
that looks for Netscape or IE, and if the script
doesn’t find either, the site is inaccessible.
Solution: You can configure Opera to
“pretend” it is the widely used IE. In the
Preferences dialog box, click Network. In
the drop-down menu next to Browser
Identification, select Identify As MSIE 6.0 (or
the latest available version of IE). Click Apply
and click OK.
Error Message: “Permission Denied”
Translation: The remote server does not
want you to access it. If you have a personal
firewall, it’s likely you have a proxy connection, and in Opera, a common cause of this
message is incorrect proxy settings. Don’t
know what a proxy is? A proxy server receives
Web page requests from a user, fetches the
page from the Internet, and then serves it to
the computer that requested it in a process
transparent to the user.
Solution: Check your proxy settings. Read
the documentation for your personal firewall,
or, if you’re on a network, ask your system
administrator to verify the correct settings.
Then, in the Preferences dialog box, select
Network. Click the Proxy Servers button.
Verify that the host name and port numbers
are correct; if not, edit them now. Click OK,
and click OK again.
AOL
Error Message: “Unable To Connect To
The AOL Service”
Translation: The error message is clear,
but what isn’t so obvious is why you can’t connect to the service. If you’ve tried the usual
culprits, such as a loose cable or phone line, or
a family member using the same telephone
line your dial-up service uses, the problem
may be with your AOL location configuration.
Solution: AOL locations are the places
from which you connect to AOL. Typical desktop users will use the same location each time
they log on, but others may use more than one
location. For instance, suppose you have a
notebook. You use it to connect to AOL both at
home, where you use a dial-up connection,
and at an office, where you have a broadband
connection. You must sign on using the appropriate location. On the Sign On screen, click
the drop-down menu next to Location, choose
the correct location, and sign onto AOL.
Error Message: “AOL Has To Reset
Your Connection”
Translation: This message appears when
you have been online and the connection fails.
Like the prior error message, the statement is
clear, but the possible causes are numerous.
The problem could be with your modem or
router, or it could be on the AOL side.
Solution: AOL has a Fix It For Me button at
the bottom left of this error message that goes
through the necessary steps to re-establish the
connection and attempt to keep it from reoccurring. Click the button to launch the
Abnormal Disconnect dialog box. Save any
open work, ensure your modem is turned on
and connected to the computer, and click
Continue. Follow the on-screen instructions.
Error Message: “An AOL Error Has
Occurred.”
Translation: In another case of stating the
obvious, this error message tells you there’s a
problem but it doesn’t say why. It can occur
when you’re browsing the Web—perhaps the
program is incompatible with another open
program—and it can also occur in other situations. What it means is you need to close
almost every program running on your PC
and reopen only the necessary ones.
Solution: Open the Windows Task
Manager (in WinXP) by pressing and holding
down CTRL-ALT-DEL. In the Applications
tab, highlight each program and click the End
Task button. Once the Applications tab is
empty, close the Windows Task Manager.
Then, launch AOL again. (If you’re using an
earlier OS, such as Windows 98, press CTRLALT-DEL to open the Close Program window,
Most Common Error Message
Error Message: “Page Cannot Be Displayed”
Translation:
This is by far the most common error message we’ve experienced when
browsing the Web. It generally means you’ve asked the Web browser to
deliver a Web page it can’t find. The reason may be that the file doesn’t exist
(for more information on “404 not found” and related messages see the article
“General Online Error Messages” on page 123), but there are multiple other
causes, including technical difficulties and incompatible software.
Solution:
The solution for most browsers is to check your Internet connection, check the
Web site address, and try again. But AOL users have an additional tool, called
the Web Browser Auto Fix, which diagnoses and fixes the problem. Open the
software but do not connect to AOL. Click Help on the AOL toolbar and then
click AOL Help. Select the Index tab. Type FIX in the text field and then press
Enter on your keyboard. Solving Common AOL Problems appears. Simply follow
the on-screen instructions. ■
PC Errors • 133
Online Communications
and close every program except Explorer and
Systray.)
Error Message: “Not Implemented”
Translation: This may occur when you’re
viewing a Web page that the AOL browser
cannot read correctly. It often happens when
you’re submitting an online form.
Solution: There’s not much you can do, as
this usually happens because the Web page
designer has included code the AOL browser
cannot handle. As we mentioned in the Opera
section, designers typically design with particular browsers in mind, especially IE, the most
commonly used Web browser. If you get this
message, you may want to help yourself and
future visitors by emailing the site’s contacts
and notifying them of the problem. Look for
contact information on the Web site.
Most Hilarious Error Message
Error Message: “Sorry, You Do Not Have Permission To Press This Key”
Translation:
Excuse me? Yes, this message really did happen to us. We were filling
out an online survey, and we attempted to type the letter a in a text
field. We tried the letter b and got
the same result. Who is this site to
tell us that we can’t press a letter
on our computer keyboard?
Solution:
Because the error message was
in a dialog box titled JavaScript Application, we knew the problem didn’t
lie with our keyboard—plus, we’d used it just fine in filling out other
online forms—and rather was because the Web page designer had
used some incorrect code. We emailed the Webmaster to let the site
know about the problem. A few days later, the site was fixed. ■
Web page from where you can download the some reinstallations, this error message
Error Message: “Too Much Network appropriate plug-in. Click the download but- appears.
ton or link—it will vary by Web site—and
Traffic”
Solution: WARNING! There, did we get
Translation: Too many people are trying write down the location the file is being saved your attention? There is a solution to this probto visit the same Web site you are, and the site to. Close AOL. Go to My Computer (via an lem, but it involves editing the Registry, the
can’t handle the traffic. If you get this message icon on your Desktop or through your Start database that contains information about user
often, however, the cause is possibly your
preferences and system configuration.
browser cache. When you visit Web sites,
Use extreme caution when editing the
the browser stores a copy of them on
Registry because errors in it can disable
your hard drive for faster loading in the
Windows and prevent the PC from bootfuture. When this cache is full, this mesing. First, we recommend you visit the
sage may appear.
Smart Computing Web site and search for
Solution: Click the Settings icon on
articles on the Registry. Then, if you’re
the AOL toolbar. In the Settings:
an experienced PC user, log on as an
Essentials dialog box, select the Essentials
administrator, click Start, and click Run.
tab and click Internet [Web] Options. In
In the Open box, type regedit, and click
the Internet Options dialog box on the
OK. Locate the appropriate Registry subGeneral tab under the Temporary
key, right-click the IsInstalled(REG_D
WORD) value, and then click Modify.
Internet Files section, click the Delete
Use the following Registry key: HKEY
Files button. Wait a moment as the soft_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\
ware empties out your cache and click By configuring Opera to “masquerade” as Internet Explorer,
you may encounter fewer error messages while browsing.
MICROSOFT\ACTIVE SETUP\IN
OK.
STALLED COMPONENTS\{89820200Error Message: “You Do Not Have The menu) and browse to the saved file. Double- ECBD-11cf-8B85-00AA005B4383} Change the
Plug-In Needed To View The ‘Applica- click to install it. Once installation is complete, value data from 1 to 0. Click OK. Quit Registry
tion/Plug-In’ Type Of Information On relaunch AOL and revisit the Web page.
Editor and then install Internet Explorer 6.
This Page. To Get The Plug-In Now,
Internet Explorer
Click View Plug-In Directory”
Error Message: “Internet Explorer Has
Translation: Plug-ins are scripts, utilities,
Primarily Windows XP
Encountered A Problem And Needs To
or instructions that add to the functionality of
Close. We Are Sorry For The Incona program without changing the program’s Error Message: “Setup Has Detected A venience.”
Translation: Crashes are a fact of computbase code. The Macromedia Shockwave plug- Newer Version Of Internet Explorer
in, for example, allows special animated Web Already Installed On This System. ing life, and when it happens while you’re
using IE on your WinXP machine, this mescontent to be displayed in the AOL browser. Setup Cannot Continue”
Translation: By default, Internet Explorer sage may appear. Fortunately, you can use the
When you visit a Web site that requires a plug6 is installed on all versions of WinXP, and you Internet Explorer Error Reporting tool,
in you don’t have, this message appears.
Solution: Click the View Plug-In Directory won’t need to install IE. But if the software is installed by default on WinXP, to diagnose the
button on the message. This takes you to a corrupted, you may wish to reinstall IE 6. In problem. (A variation of the message appears
134 • PC Errors
Online Communications
in earlier Windows versions, but if you do not
have the error-reporting tool, the following
solution is unavailable to you, and Microsoft
instead recommends you restart your computer or contact the program vendor.)
Solution: After IE closes, you’ll see a dialog
box that says, “Please tell Microsoft about this
problem. We have created an error report that
you can send to help us improve Internet
Explorer. We will treat this report as confidential and anonymous.” Click the Send Error
Report button to send that information to
Microsoft so the company can work on creating a fix or workaround. If one already exists,
you’ll see a More Information link. Click it and
you’ll often be transported to a Microsoft Web
page with specific instructions on how to prevent a future similar crash.
Error Message: “Problems With This
Web Page Might Prevent It From Being
Displayed Properly Or Functioning
Properly. In The Future You Can
Display This Message By DoubleClicking The Warning Icon Displayed
In The Status Bar.”
Translation: The message is fairly straightforward; it’s telling you that the HTML code in
the Web page you’re visiting doesn’t display
properly in your IE browser. This message
occurs in IE 6 and earlier versions.
Solution: First, determine whether the
problem lies with the page in particular or
your browser settings in general. If the error
doesn’t exist on other pages, or exists only
infrequently, it’s likely the error is in the
page design, and you can’t do much about it.
(You may try to view the page in another
browser, such as Mozilla or Opera, on your
system.) If this is a widespread problem,
check any antivirus or firewall programs on
your system to ensure they aren’t blocking
scripts, ActiveX controls or Java applets.
Cleaning out your cache, cookie file and history may also help. Go to the Tools menu and
select Internet Options. On the General tab,
click the Delete Files, Delete Cookies, and
Clear History buttons, responding affirmatively to their prompts. Click OK to close the
Internet Options dialog box.
Error Message: “Internet Explorer
Script Error. An error has occurred in
the script on this page. Line: 49 Char: 1
Error: This command is unavailable
because the license to use this application has expired. Code: 0 URL:
activate an Office product, this situation may
occur after you install Office 2003. If you
select Web Debugging during the Office 2003
installation, IE’s disable script debugging feature is turned off, and you must reconfigure it.
Solution: In IE’s Internet Options dialog
box select the Advanced tab. In the Settings
menu, under Browsing, place a check mark in
the Disable Script Debugging box. Make sure
the Display A Notification About Every
Script Error checkbox is empty. Click OK.
AOL’s “Fix It For Me” button can help you reestablish communications when you lose connections to Web sites.
res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~1\OFF
ICE10\EXCEL.EXE\3000 Do you want
to continue running scripts on this
page?”
Translation: There are a variety of known
script errors. The clue to this one is in the
URL; it shows that the trouble lies when you
have an inactivated copy of Excel 2002 on
your hard drive. For other script errors, look
at the URL line for hints as to the cause.
Solution: Go to Start, All Programs,
Microsoft Office Tools, and click Activate
Product. Follow the on-screen steps of the
activation wizard. When done, click Finish.
Error Message: “Error. A Runtime Error Has Occurred. Do You Wish To
Debug?”
Translation: Unlike the previous error
message, where you didn’t fully install and
Error Message: “Unable To Download An Appropriate Decompressor.
(Error=80040200)” or “One Or More
Codecs Required To Open This
Content Could Not Be Found.
(Error=C00D10D1)”
Translation: You’re visiting a Web page
that contains a media file. You click the file to
launch Windows Media Player, but if you do
not have the required decompressor software, the file will not play.
Solution: Possible causes include an outdated version of IE, but if you’re running IE 6
on WinXP, it could be that your security settings are too high. Open IE’s Internet Options
dialog box. Choose the Security tab. Under
Security Level For This Zone, click the
Default Level button. Is the slider set to
High? Then move it to Medium, click OK,
and restart your computer.
Error Message: “IEXPLORE Caused
An Invalid Page Fault In Module KERNEL32.DLL At 025f:Bff87ede” or
Most Unusual Error Message
Error Message: “Object Doesn’t Support This Property Or Method.:’Onmove’”
Translation:
This error message occurs when you’re using a WinXP machine with IE
and Commerce Server 2000 BizDesk or IE6 and Commerce Server
2000 BizDesk, and you arrange assigned properties within a product
definition.
Solution:
The odds of coming across this error message are, well, fairly slim, and
we expect you probably won’t be referring to this information often. Still,
if you see the error message, resolve the problem by opening the
BizDesk site folder on the drive where you unpacked your Commerce
site. Locate the Common.asp file. Open Common.asp in a text editor
and change all instances of OnMove to OnMovex. Then, in BizDesk site
folder that you opened earlier, locate the Edit_ProductDefinition.asp file.
Open this file in a text editor, as well, and change all instances of
OnMove to OnMovex. ■
PC Errors • 135
Online Communications
Most Confusing Error Message
Error Message: “Invalid DHCP Lease”
Translation:
Solution:
Try as we could, we couldn’t figure out a plausible phrase that fit the
acronym until we searched the Microsoft Knowledge Base. Doesn’t
Have Complete Priority? Dogs Hate Cat People? Don’t Hassle
Computer Pros? Turns out, DHCP stands for a Dynamic Host
Configuration Profile. If you use a cable modem, it may try to
automatically obtain an IP address from a DHCP server. Meanwhile,
WinXP is automatically assigning an IP address, and the two may
conflict. When this happens, IE produces this error message.
The workaround solution depends upon whether you’re using a oneway cable modem or a two-way cable modem, and fixing the problem
entirely may involve modifying your registry, so this is a procedure best
left to the experts. Contact your ISP for further instructions. ■
“IEXPLORE Caused An Invalid Page
Fault In Module <Unknown> At
0000.78581f00.” (The latter portion of
the message may include different
numbers or symbols.)
Translation: Radiate, also known as
Aureate, is adware related to banner ads you
view in your browser. The Radiate software
monitors which banner ads you click and
how much time you spend reading a given
banner. You may not have heard of Radiate,
but at one point it was behind more than 250
shareware programs, and it may cause this
message to appear when you’re closing IE.
Solution: We don’t recommend it in most
cases, but your best option is to do nothing.
The error message doesn’t prevent you from
doing what you were attempting to do—
close the IE program—so go head and close
it. The Aureate company appears to be
defunct, so this error message soon should
cease to exist.
Primarily Windows 98/Me
Error Message: “ERROR: OE: 0028:
C0012D2C” followed by
“ERROR: 0D: 0246: XXXXXXXX Press
Key To Continue.” (The eight-digit
string of Xs stands for the memory
location.)
Translation: Windows Me users may see
a black screen followed by this error message
in a number of situations. The most common
situations are if you have software incompatible with IE or a damaged copy of IE.
Solution: Antivirus or personal firewalls
may be incompatible with your version of IE.
136 • PC Errors
An easy fix would be to remove these
programs, but they can be essential to the
smooth operation of your PC, so we recommend you download and install a new
copy of IE or attempt to repair your current
version. Click Start, Settings, and open your
Control Panel. Double-click Add/Remove
The Internet Explorer Error Reporting tool sends
information to Microsoft that can help pinpoint
what is wrong with your browser.
Programs. Select Microsoft Internet Explorer
5.x And Internet Tools, click Add/Remove,
and click Repair Internet Explorer. Click
OK, click Yes to repair the installation,
and then restart the computer when you are
prompted.
Error Message: “HTTP Error 403
Forbidden Internet Explorer. You Are
Not Authorized To View This Page.
You Might Not Have Permission To
View This Directory Or Page Using
The Credentials You Supplied.”
Translation: Don’t let the first part of the
message fool you. (For more information
about the HTTP 403 errors, see the article
“General Online Error Messages” elsewhere
in this section.) If you’re a Win98 user accessing the Windows Update Web site, you
might get the following message.
Solution: Clear out your cache by opening
the Internet Options dialog box and clicking
the Delete Files button on the General tab.
Click OK. Click OK to close the dialog box.
Go to the Tools menu and select Windows
Update.
Error Message: “Page Cannot Be
Displayed”
Translation: This message appears frequently and in a range of situations—that’s
why it’s our Most Common Error Message
(see sidebar), but one situation deserves special mention here. Win98 users who install
and uninstall the popular Gator program
may still have an incompatibility that causes
this error.
Solution: When you installed Gator, you
also likely installed OfferCompanion.
Removing Gator doesn’t ensure removal of
OfferCompanion, which can interfere with
IE. In the Add/Remove Programs Properties
dialog box, click OfferCompanion, and click
Remove. Follow the on-screen instructions
and restart the computer when prompted.
Error Message: “Unable To Print Document, Either Document’s Application
Is Not Installed Correctly, There Is
Not Enough Memory To Load The
Application, Or This Application Does
Not Support Printing (For Example
Sound Files Can Not Be Printed)”
Translation: Win98 users who select Print
All Linked Documents may run into this
error when they try to print Web pages, especially if on a slower dial-up connection.
Solution: Print the Web pages while
offline. First, you must download the Web
page and its linked pages. In IE 5, go to the
Favorites menu and select Add To Favorites.
Check the Make Available Offline box and
then click the Customize button. The wizard
will walk you through adding linked pages.
When finished, close IE and disconnect. Start
IE, go to the File menu, and select Work
Offline. Find the Web page in the favorites
list, go to the File menu, select Print, and
select the Print All Linked Documents checkbox. Click OK. RS
by Heidi V. Anderson
Hardware
Memory, CPU, BIOS & Port
Headaches
Tough Solutions For
Tough Issues
f buggy application and OS errors are a
royal pain in your backside, then you’ll
probably agree that Processor, Memory,
and other BIOS (Basic Input/Output System)level errors can be a bone-jarring sort of disturbance. A fleeting Windows GPF (General
Protection Fault) error has nothing on the sort
of issue that renders your machine completely useless. You could even fix the problem
with an OS reinstall, if your rig would actually boot, that is. Hardware-level errors like
these are also often the most difficult to diagnose because the root cause could be a setting
or the fact that you are dealing with a physical configuration problem or physical damage
to a component. We’ll cover some of the most
common and plaguing hardware-related
error messages here, from the benign nuisances to the big ugly errors that keep your
system offline for days or weeks.
I
Bad Mojo In Your BIOS
When bad things happen to good BIOS
images, your system can sometimes act like it
is possessed. Fear not, here are solutions to a
few common problems, sans the voodoo doll
pin sticking.
Error Message: “BIOS ROM checksum
error—System Halted, Insert Disk”
Translation: We might as well tackle the
tough one first here, folks. This one in particular
has caused many a late night and numerous
cases of heartburn to be sure. This occurs when
you have corrupted your computing system’s
BIOS image somehow, like with a failed flash
attempt, for example. Shorting the jumper on
your motherboard for clearing CMOS (complementary metal-oxide semiconductor) may or
may not get you back up and running.
However, depending on your particular BIOS
version and its capability, you should be able to
restore a clean BIOS image through the following flash method.
Solution: Assuming you have access to
another machine to work with, create a
bootable floppy disk, either DOS-based or
Windows-based. Copy the BIOS flash loader
utility for your BIOS type (usually either
Award or AMI) onto the disk, as well as the
latest version of your motherboard’s BIOS.
Most likely you can find both the latest BIOS
file and the flash utility on your motherboard
manufacturer’s Web site. If your machine is
actually prompting you to “insert disk and
strike any key,” then you’re almost done. The
flash utility will automatically load and flash
the BIOS or prompt you to enter the BIOS file
name to flash. Make sure you jot down the
exact name of the BIOS file in case you need
it for this process.
For AMI BIOS types and other versions of
Award’s flash utility, you can follow the
same syntax convention but obviously you
need to replace the AWDFLASH command
with the proper flash utility command that is
specific to your motherboard BIOS. Upon
power up, with this floppy disk in your
drive, the AUTOEXEC.BAT file should load
the flash utility and BIOS file for reprogramming your BIOS chip. If your machine does
not boot to your floppy drive, disconnect all
other hard drives and optical drives in the
system and then power down and power up
the system again. Follow the on-screen
instructions, and once the process is complete, you should be able to boot your
machine normally.
A checksum value is generated by the
CMOS and is saved for error checking on subsequent boot-ups. This error message will
appear if the checksum is different from one
boot-up to the next. The BIOS has auto loaded
a basic default configuration so that your
motherboard boots properly. The good news
is, typically entering your BIOS menu, checking your settings, adjusting them if need be,
and resaving before exit will clear up the
error. This error may also have been caused
by a weak battery. Check the CMOS battery
(it looks like a small disk-style watch battery
on your motherboard) and replace it, if
PC Errors • 137
Hardware
about it via this error message, obviously. It’s definitely a good thing.
Connection Or PortRelated Errors
There are many potential
points of failure in today’s
modern PC in terms of
physical connections between peripherals. If you
are not the neat and tidy
type, that rat’s nest inside
your PC could be the
source of your problems.
The BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) ROM error message comes up
after a failed POST (power on self test) attempt, if your BIOS image
has been corrupted in some way.
necessary. You may also have to clear CMOS
by shorting jumper pins on your motherboard, as well, to remedy the problem.
Error Message: “Hardware Monitor Found An Error, Please Check Power
Setup.”
Translation: Most recent motherboards
have a system “health monitoring” chip on
them that keeps vital stats on things such as
voltages, temperatures, and fan speeds.
Typically this is a small chip made by
Winbond known as the system “Hardware Monitor.” You’re getting this particular
error message because the chip has detected
something that it doesn’t like in your current configuration.
Solution: Monitoring functions for these
chips are typically set in the BIOS setup menu.
In the power setup menu or health monitoring
sections of your BIOS, you’ll see settings for
disabling or enabling monitoring functions for
system fan speeds and temperatures.
Typically this error message is caused by a fan
not being plugged into a power header that is
being monitored in the BIOS. Because the system is looking for an rpm speed reading from
the fan and isn’t getting one, it alerts you with
this message. Check to see that your fans are
plugged in and spinning at their proper
speeds. If you need to, go into the BIOS and
disable the monitoring function on the specific
fan power header that you may not be using.
However, in general you should leave monitoring enabled on any fan power port that is
in use in your system. If a fan fails on you in
the future, you’ll certainly want to know
138 • PC Errors
Error Message: “Floppy
Disk Fail (40)”
Translation: BIOS notification errors like these are
significantly easier to work with than ones
like the previous ROM checksum error. Most
likely your floppy drive’s data or power
cables have been disconnected from the
motherboard floppy controller port.
Solution: You simply need to power
down, open your case, and reseat the connectors for the floppy drive. If this doesn’t work,
it is remotely possible that either your motherboard floppy controller channel has gone
south on you or your floppy drive itself
is bad.
Error Message: “80 Wire Cable Not
Installed”
Translation: This is a fairly noninvasive
error message that really doesn’t have much of a
symptom besides the error message itself. This
error comes up when you’ve plugged a legacy
40-pin IDE (Integrated Drive Electronics) cable
on to an 80-pin ATA100 or ATA133 channel.
This may happen perhaps when you install a
new CD or CD-RW drive. These drives often
come with only 40-pin cables, because they usually don’t make use of the newer ATA100 and
ATA133 80-pin standard. However, the
ATA100/133 channels on your motherboard are
backward compatible, so even with older 40-pin
cables, you shouldn’t have any issues.
Solution: Motherboard OEMs (original
equipment manufacturers) have just taken the
steps to notify you if perhaps you have an
ATA100 or ATA133 capable drive on that channel that actually needs an 80-pin cable. If this is
the case, just replace your existing 40-pin cable
with a new standard 80-pin cable and all should
be well.
Error Message: Primary (or Secondary)
master hard disk fail—Fixed Disk Failure
Translation: This error can occur at POST
(power on self test), as well, and could be
indicative of a bad hard drive cable connection
or perhaps that your hard drive has actually
up and died.
Solution: Either way, if you are able to
recover from this error, you should back up
your critical data if possible. You should
then again check the data and power cable
connections to your drive and motherboard
Error Message: “Keyboard Error Or No
Keyboard Present.”
Translation: Here again, the most likely
cause for this error is that the PS/2 or
USB (Universal Serial
Bus) cable for your
keyboard has been
disconnected from the
system, whether it be
just a mechanical disconnect or actually
damage to your keyboard cabling.
Solution: It may not
be immediately obvious,
but many times keyboard cables are given a
hard workout due to
repetitive user stress
on the cable or keyboard itself. So don’t
rule out the possibility The “IRQ_NOT_LESS_THAN_OR_EQUAL” blue screen error is typically
that your cable is bad on followed by a complete system reset. Tracking down the root cause of
this one can be a tough problem to solve.
that old keyboard.
Hardware
to make sure they are properly seated. Also
try entering the motherboard BIOS setup
menu to see if the drive is detected and configured properly. If the problem is with the
hard drive itself, you may have to replace
the drive.
Memory & Processor Errors
Memory and processor errors can often be
difficult to troubleshoot due to the myriad of
ailments that could be the root cause of a system error. Here are some standard issue error
types and a few more exotic and complex
problems, along with solutions.
Error Message: “IRQ_NOT_LESS_THAN
_OR_EQUAL”
Translation: This is a fairly serious error
you can get while trying to boot Windows XP
or other Windows OSes. This error manifests
itself in the classic blue screen of death, or
BSOD as it is popularly known. The problem
is that tracking down the root cause of this
error can be like finding a needle in a
haystack. Blue screen errors are known as
hardware or software “stop” errors. This is
Microsoft’s particularly clever way in which
they classify a type of error that, well, . . .
stops your computer. The problem with this
particular error message is that it could represent either a hardware or software level
issue. For example, we’ve seen this error
from time to time during a failed attempt at
overclocking. Sometimes it could be due to
excessive heat buildup in the processor; other
times it’s due to system memory not being
able to meet the aggressive timings or bus
speeds you’ve set.
Solution: This error also could be the
result of a software installation or driver
installation that is now causing a hardware
conflict within Windows. The general rule of
thumb for troubleshooting these types of
issues is tracking down and remembering
specifically what recent changes you’ve made
to your system OS, drivers, or hardware.
Usually, the last thing you did before you got
the blue screen error is the demon that is
causing you the heartburn. Microsoft also has
detailed step-by-step troubleshooting techniques for this error message, located at
www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/usin/
howto/gettingstarted/guide/troubleshoot
.asp#GSE.
As a last resort, a complete hard drive format and OS reinstall may be needed, as well,
to eliminate a possible driver level conflict.
Error Message: “PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA”
Translation: This is another blue screen
error that has a more specific and targeted
area of concern. This error occurs as a result
of a system memory problem, whether it is
physical memory space or virtual memory
space. We’ve often seen this error occur with
bad memory sticks or when system DRAM
(dynamic RAM) timings are too aggressive for the memory
modules. Nine times
out of 10, it’s the result
of overclocking or
RAS/CAS (row adError Message:
dress strobe/column
access strobe) latency
Translation:
timings that are be
yond the limits of your
installed memory.
Solution: The best
thing to do in this scenario would be to turn
down your bus speeds
or increase VDIMM
(voltage settings for
dual in-line memory
module) voltages until
you reach a point
where you boot normally and have full OS
stability. However, it
is also possible that
Solution:
this error occurs as a
result of an error in
virtual memory or the
Windows swap file.
Operating systems
such as WinXP require
more operational memory than some systems have installed
in actual physical memory. Because the
Windows swap file is
set up in “pages,” this
file is also called a
“page file.” So if Windows runs out of physical memory, it goes
to the page file on
your hard drive and
“swaps” data back
and forth to run applications and other
tasks. The problem is
that if Windows starts
running out of swap or page file area (perhaps your hard drive is filling up), you could
possibly get this page fault error. The solution is either freeing up disk space and
increasing your available swap file size or
adding system memory. The latter is the better solution overall. More system memory
equates to more goodness for the ever
resource-hungry GUI (graphical user interface) driven OS from Microsoft.
Most Unusual Error Message
“8042 Gate—A20 Error!”
This error occurs on rare occasions, and while
it is typically a lower severity error message,
it’s a rather ambiguous technical-sounding sort
of message punctuated sternly with an exclamation point. I mean “8042 Gate – A20” . . .
Are we talking CPU transistor gates here? Is
your processor about to spontaneously combust in a ball of fire? Fortunately this error isn’t
nearly as traumatic as it could sound to some
not in the know. Your keyboard’s controller chip,
a small micro-controller that provides low-level
control intelligence for your keyboard to communicate to your main system, has a “Gate A20” functional block on it that has failed to
communicate with your host CPU.
Try powering down the system, disconnecting
the keyboard, and then reconnecting it again
before you power your system back up. If this
doesn’t work, unfortunately you may have to
replace the keyboard, although that’s not typically
an expensive proposition unless you have a
really high-end model. Either way, this issue will
probably come up only on older keyboards that
may be ready for replacement regardless. ■
The Gate A20 error looks ominous but its worstcase scenario is only a matter of replacing your
keyboard, which may be faulty.
PC Errors • 139
Hardware
replace one or more
memory modules in
your system.
Error
Message:
“Override Enabled—
Defaults Loaded”
Translation: If the
system cannot boot
based on your current
CMOS settings, perhaps due to an overaggressive overclock,
for example, a good
motherboard BIOS
implementation will
The “PAGE_FAULT_IN_NON_PAGED_AREA” blue screen error crops up
sometimes show this
many times when your system memory is being pushed to its limits.
error message. This is
On the other hand, don’t rule out a Windows swap file issue as well.
another case of a completely non-life-threatError Message: “CMOS Memory Size ening error message. In fact, if you’re getting
Mismatch”
this message at all, then you have your
Translation: This error occurs on occa- motherboard manusion, and we’ve seen it more so with mother- facturer to thank for
boards that have AMI BIOS types. It occurs making your life sigmost times after a user has either installed or nificantly easier, at
uninstalled system memory. At the next boot least as far as your
up, the BIOS expected a certain memory size PC is concerned.
Error Message:
during its count diagnostic and got someSolution: As the
thing different. That makes the BIOS some- message suggests,
Translation:
what unhappy, and you end up with this this is a case where
error message.
the BIOS has detectSolution: Usually if you just hit the F1 ed a nonbootable setkey to continue, the system will continue to ting and reset itself
boot your OS, and then next time you boot to the most stable,
up, you won’t see this message again. That’s low performance
how we like it. However, on occasion, this factory default seterror could pop up due to the CMOS battery tings available for
on the motherboard that is failing. That’s not the motherboard.
how we like it. Because the BIOS can’t retain Typically, memory
Solution:
the system’s memory size data, it could give timings are automatyou a false alert with this error. If this is the ically set to SPD
case, replacing the CMOS battery on your Detect, and frontside
motherboard could fix the issue.
bus speeds for your
processor are dialed
Error Message: “Memory Test Failed”
down to the stock
Translation: This is also an error mes- bus speed that is
sage you can get reported from the BIOS detected from CPU
during POST. Typically this is the result of a microcode. Stock opbad memory stick or a remote possibility erational voltages for
that your memory timings in the BIOS are RAM and CPU are
too aggressive.
also set by default
Solution: Check to see that your memory when this error mesmodules are seated properly in their sockets sage occurs.
and make sure the bus speeds and timings
So, whether it was
are set to default in your BIOS. If you’re still the memory, procesgetting this error message, you may have to sor, or some voltage
setting that your motherboard didn’t like,
your BIOS version was designed well enough
that it could recover on its own from a bad
setup. You should reenter the BIOS menu,
perhaps choose less aggressive settings, save,
and reboot your machine. You may also have
to readjust some of your particular peripheral settings for things such as integrated
audio, LAN (local-area network), or RAID
(redundant array of independent disks) controllers, etc., because those may have been
reset to a factory default setting, as well.
Some extreme cases may render your PC
unbootable. In these scenarios you may need
to reset your BIOS in hardware (usually by
moving a jumper over and rebooting). Please
consult your motherboard manual before
proceeding on this path. RS
by Dave Altavilla
Most Daunting Error Message
(When The Screen Is Blank)
140 • PC Errors
BIOS Corruption Error with no message at all
Probably the most daunting BIOS (Basic
Input/Output System)-related error message is
actually not a text message at all. In fact, if
you’re lucky, you may only hear two low-pitched
tones from your motherboard. You may hear
or see nothing at all, as well. This is akin to
the BIOS ROM checksum error except it’s a
bit more evil since you may not be prompted
by any screen message at all.
If your motherboard is not prompting you to
enter a BIOS flash diskette but will not boot
due to a corrupted BIOS image, you still may
be able to save your bacon. However, you need
to add an autoexec.bat file to your floppy disk,
which will give the proper commands to your
machine, call a BIOS flash utility from your floppy
disk, and load its respective BIOS file. Use
a text editor or the edit command at the DOS
prompt after you’ve booted from a floppy disk.
Make sure that you’ve created the file name
as AUTOEXEC and that the extension is .BAT. ■
For Award flash types, the syntax should look like this:
@ECHO OFF
@AWDFLASH BIOSFILENAME.BIN
Hardware
Drive & Storage
Problem Solving
Your Data is Gone! Or is it?
ew things are more frustrating then getting an error message when trying to
access important data. The drives used
in modern computers all have moving parts
and store files on sensitive media. Should the
drives or media get damaged in any way, and
you’re confronted by some cryptic error messages, those vital bits of data may be lost forever. Most error messages aren’t a sign of
doom, however. They arm you with the information you need to resolve your problems,
and in some cases, get that data back.
Solution: Copying more data than the disk
can hold is simply not an option. What you
can do, however, is compress the files or folders you’re trying to copy with a utility such as
WinZip or WinRAR to make one archive that
can be stored in less space, but don’t expect
any miracles, compression will take you only
so far. Invest in a USB (Universal Serial Bus)
thumb drive or CD-RW drive when you’ve
outgrown floppies. They can hold much more
data and are far less fragile.
Solution: If you get this message after
inserting a blank floppy disk or when trying
to access a brand new hard drive for the first Error Message: “Copying File or Folder.
time, click Yes, and format the disk. After it’s Cannot copy error_copying: The disk is
formatted, Windows
(or whichever operating system you run)
will then be able to
read and write to the
disk. Should you get
this message after
inserting a disk that
contains important
■ Floppy Drive Errors. The death of the data—don’t format it!
venerable 3.5-inch floppy drive has been pre- Formatting the disk
dicted for years, and yet these aged devices will wipe out any Your 3.5-inch floppy disk has a plastic slider that is used to
can still be found in the majority of computers files that may still be write-protect the disk. When it’s down you can write to the disk,
being sold today. Luckily, most error messages accessible. There is a when it’s up the disk is write-protected.
regarding 3.5-inch disks require little effort to chance you’ve lost
resolve. The worst-case scenario entails replac- the data, but don’t assume the worst until write-protected. Remove the write-protection
ing an inexpensive disk or cheap drive.
you’ve verified the disk can’t be read by or use another disk.”
another system. The floppy drive itself may
Translation: The file or folder you’re tryError Message: “Disk is not formatted. The be malfunctioning. Try some other disks in ing to copy to the disk cannot be written
disk in drive X is not formatted. Do you want the drive to see if they can be read. Then, try because the disk is write-protected. Data canto format it now?”
accessing the disk from another system, not be written to the disk until the write-proTranslation: The disk you are trying to preferably the system that was last used to tection has been removed.
access either hasn’t been prepared for use with write to the disk.
Solution: 3.5-inch floppy disks have a
small, plastic slider at the top corner that is
Error Message: “Copy. used to lock, or unlock the disk. When the
The file being copied is too slider is in the top position, creating a hole in
large for the destination the corner of the disk, it is locked and files
drive. If possible, insert a cannot be written or modified on the disk.
higher-capacity disk.”
Move the slider to the lower position to
Translation: Floppy unlock it and remove the write-protection. If
disks don’t have an unlim- you’re being frugal and trying to recycle an
ited capacity. In fact, the old driver disk, for example, that doesn’t
amount of data they can have a slider, simply place a piece of tape
store is miniscule by today’s over the hole in the corner of the disk. As
standards. A typical 1.44MB long as that hole is covered, it’s not writeWithout being properly formatted, floppy disks cannot be read
floppy disk, when formatted, protected.
by your computer.
can hold only 1.38MB of
data. If you try to copy more ■ Hard Drive Errors. The hard drive is
your OS, or it has been damaged and the data than 1.38MB of data to the disk, this error arguably the most “mission-critical” compocan no longer be read. Every floppy and hard message will appear. You’ll get a similar nent in any computer. Motherboards, procesdisk needs to be formatted to prepare the error when your hard drive reaches its maxi- sors, and memory may fail and bring down a
media for use with a particular file system.
mum capacity.
system, but lose a hard drive and not only is
F
PC Errors • 141
Hardware
Error Message: “Error
Deleting File or Folder.
Cannot delete XX: Access is denied. Make
sure the disk is not full
or write-protected and
that the file is not currently in use.”
Make sure you have enough free space on your disk before you try
Translation: If you
copying that large file.
try to delete a file that is
write-protected or is curyour system hosed, but your data is gone as rently in use by another user or application,
well. Pay attention to the warning signs and Windows will not allow you to delete it.
frequently back up important data.
Access to the file can also be denied if you’re
logged into the system with a restricted user
Error Message: “Error Copying File or account that does not have the necessary priviFolder. Cannot copy XX: There is not enough leges to delete files.
free disk space. Delete one or more files to
Solution: Generally, all that is necessary
free disk space, and then try again.”
to resolve this problem, provided you are
Translation: A hard drive can only hold so logged into the system with sufficient privimuch data. If you try to copy 2GB worth of leges, is to shut down all running applicafiles to a drive that only has 1GB of free space tions. Once the apps are closed, try deleting
left, you’ll get this error.
the file(s) again. We commonly see this error
Solution: In order to cram those new files when doing routine maintenance on some of
onto your hard drive, you’ll have to free up the systems in the lab. The Windows TEMP
some space. Before you begin uninstalling infre- folder usually contains files that can be safely
quently used applications, run Disk Cleanup deleted, but when applications are running,
(go to My Computer, right-click on your drive, some files are placed in this folder and canselect Properties from the menu, and then click not be removed until the application is
the Disk Cleanup button) to free you drive of closed. Email clients and antivirus software
unnecessary temporary files, and compress files are the most common culprits.
that you haven’t accessed in awhile. You can
also try clearing older System Restore points Error Message: ”Bad Sectors Found on
that won’t be used any longer (click on the Drive X:”
More Options tab in the Disk Cleanup menu,
Translation: The platters used in today’s
and click on the Clean Up... button in the hard drives are broken down into tracks and
System Restore section). You’ll be surprised by sectors. Each sector is a small portion of the
the amount of space that you can free by doing drive where data is stored. Inevitably, some
these two steps if you’ve never used Windows’ of these sectors become corrupt and can no
Disk Cleanup feature before. If that doesn’t free longer be used. When a sector goes “bad” the
up enough space, though, you can start unin- data stored there is usually lost.
stalling applications that you no longer need.
Solution: Disk diagnostic utilities, such as
Once you’ve you free up the necessary amount Scandisk or Norton Disk Doctor, inspect a
of space, try copying the files again.
drive and will attempt to repair bad sectors.
More often than not,
however, that bad sector
can no longer be used
because it has become
corrupted in some way.
These diagnostic utilities will then mark that
bad sector as unusable,
and the system will no
longer attempt to write
new data there. Most
If you’re logged in as a restricted user, the disk is write-protected, or the
drive manufacturers also
file you trying to delete is in use, you’ll get an “Access Denied” error.
have free, downloadable
142 • PC Errors
diagnostic utilities that can attempt to repair
bad sectors. Should it be beyond repair, the bad
sector will then be marked and hidden, so the
OS never even knows it’s there.
A hard drive that starts reporting bad sectors may be on its last leg; so be sure to back
up any data that is important to you as soon
as you come across this error. One or two
bad sectors isn’t something to get alarmed
about, but if your drive reports a few more
each time you run Scandisk, you’ll definitely
want to replace it.
■ CD/DVD Drive Errors. The data stored on
CDs or DVDs should last for years if the discs
are properly cared for. This durability, coupled with the fact that optical drive technology is very mature and reliable, means error
messages regarding CD/DVD drives are few
and far between.
Error Message: “Invalid Write State, Could
Not Perform EndTrack, Command Sequence
Error, Could Not Perform Fixation…”
Translation: CDs and DVDs are burned
using a specific process. Tracks are written to
a disk and the locations of the tracks are then
stored in the disk’s TOC (Table of Contents).
Then, the disk is closed and no more data can
be written. Should any part of the burn
process fail, your CD-/DVD-authoring software of choice may report errors like the
ones listed above.
Solution: We used Nero 6 Ultra Edition
with a scratched CD-R to replicate all four of
these errors, but Roxio Easy Media Creator 7
(or other authoring applications) should
report something similar. Errors like these
will occur when either the drive is malfunctioning or the media being used is defective.
If this only happens occasionally, your drive
is probably working properly and low-quality media is the culprit. Try using a different
brand of writable discs. Browse over to your
drive manufacturer’s Web site to check for
updated firmware as well. New firmware
revisions are usually released to increase
compatibility with different types of media
and to resolve bugs that weren’t discovered
in previous firmware releases.
Error Message: “Burn Process Failed at YYx
(ZZZZKB/s)”
Translation: If your recordable drive reports
any major errors while burning a CD/DVD, it
will likely result in a “Burn Process Failed” error
and the burned disc will be unusable.
Hardware
Solution: There are quite a few things
that can cause the burn process to fail, such
as buffer under-runs, low-quality media, and
even a dirty or defective drive. Most modern
burners have large buffers and incorporate
technology designed to prevent buffer underruns, but to increase your chances of a successful burn don’t run any disk or memory
intensive applications while writing a
drive reports that there is no disc in the drive,
you’ll get this error. Obviously, if there is no
disc in the drive, simply insert one to resolve
the problem. If, however, you’re getting this
error when there is a disc inserted, there may
be a problem with your media or the drive
itself. Reboot your system and try another
blank CD (or a different brand of blank CD).
Also try a different application to burn the
disk, as the utility built-in to Windows isn’t
the most powerful tool available. If, no matter
what you try, the drive continually reports
that there is no disc available, it may have to
be replaced. RS
by Marco Chiappetta
See You in 2005
ome errors can be rather amusing if you know what steps to take to work around
them. Microsoft Windows isn’t always a good judge of time, so don’t panic when
Windows tells you your senior thesis won’t be done copying for a few years.
S
Bad media or a defective drive, among other
things, could cause your CD burn process to fail.
CD/DVD. If your hard drive is constantly
being accessed, it may not be able to feed
data to the burner fast enough to sustain the
burn. Also, simply try using a new blank disc
or a different brand of media.
Should your drive be the culprit, update
its firmware and try again. If nothing helps,
and you're not happy about your everincreasing stack of coasters, the drive may
need to be replaced.
Error Message: “Insert a writable disc to
continue. There is no disc in the drive. Please
insert a writable CD in drive X:”
Translation: The CD drive (represented by
X) is reporting to the OS that there is no disc in
the drive.
Solution: Microsoft’s CD Writing Wizard
will scan your drive before the burn process
begins to ensure there is enough free space
on the disc to accommodate all of the files
you want to copy. If during that scan the
Insert a blank CD, or try a different brand of media
if Microsoft's CD Writing Wizard tells you there is
no disc in the drive.
Windows may power 97% of the world’s personal
computers, but can it tell time correctly?
Error Message:
“Copying . . . XX Minutes Remaining”
Translation:
Occasionally, when trying to copy a file or unusually large group of
files, Windows will report an astronomically long time is left to
complete the process. Windows calculates the amount of time left
to copy a file in the first few moments of the copy process. If the
file(s) is in use, or another application is excessively taxing the
drive at that particular moment, the time reported can be way off
the mark. This problem could also occur when trying to copy a
corrupt file to a new destination.
Solution:
Should you be confronted with this pseudo-error, the first thing to do
is cancel the copy process. Then, shut down as many applications
as possible, and simply try copying the file again. If you continue to
have trouble, restart your computer, and before running any other
applications, try copying the file once more. Should the problem
persist, run Scandisk or a similar diagnostic utility on the drive
where the file resides to ensure there isn’t a problem with the disk
itself. When the scan is complete, and you’re relatively certain there
isn’t a problem with the drive, reboot your system again. Once
Windows is done booting and all of your background applications
have launched, disable any antivirus or security software that may
be running in the background and then press CTRL-ALT-DEL to
bring up Task Manger. Next, click on the Processes tab and then
click on the User Name header to sort all of the running processes
by your username. Highlight each of the processes associated with
your username, except for explorer.exe and taskmgr.exe, and then
click on the End Process button (don’t worry, they’ll all be back the
next time you restart your system). With all of the background processes closed, try copying the file again—you should be all set. ■
PC Errors • 143
Hardware
Troubling Printing & Scanning
Documents Check In, But Try These
Tips When They Don’t Check Out
e won’t sugar coat it: There are a lot
of things that can go wrong during
printing and scanning, and for better
or worse the fact is that most of the problems
will be due to a lack of user knowledge rather
than an outright technical glitch. This is actually good news, because it means that most of
your troubles can be remedied with a little
background reading. On the other hand, sometimes you’re bound to get snagged by a bona
fide bug of some sort.
For times when your document handling
hits a brick wall, see if some of these solutions
save the day.
W
Error Message: Paper jam.
Translation: Somewhere between the
paper tray and the output bin, a piece of paper
has misfed and become gummed up in the
printer’s innards, stalling the printing process.
Solution: There are two imperatives to
remember: Do not rush and do not pull the
paper out backwards. Rushing often results in
torn sheets, and the last thing you want is irretrievable snippets of paper left behind in your
equipment, waiting for a critical print job during which to jam your gears. The reason not to
pull paper out backwards is that many printers are carefully designed to only feed paper
through in one direction. If you force the components to move backwards, you may damage
the equipment and are more likely to increase
resistance that in turn leads to tearing.
this. And don’t be nervous, this isn’t brain
surgery. Alternatively, you may be getting paper
jams due to high humidity. Before you put a new
stack of paper in the printer, flex the ream so that
air can briefly get between the sheets.
Error Message: Printer
failed to initialize. (The
printer may also simply
hang during printing.)
Translation: You’ve sent
off a print job, but the printer
never actually starts to output
the data. This is often the result of something in the system prohibiting a file called You can improve the performance and stability of your printer or
Spool32.exe from executing scanner by making sure you're using the latest device drivers.
correctly. Spooling is the process of storing your print job until the printer Odds are that if you haven’t updated your driis ready to accept the job.
vers in the last few months, you’re probably
Solution: Try disabling the print spool set- not benefiting from the latest set of bug fixes
tings in Windows. Click Start, (Settings, in pre- and performance enhancements.
XP Windows), and Printers. Highlight your
Visit your manufacturer’s support site and
printer. In earlier Windows versions, such as download the latest official (not beta) driver
98 and Me, select Properties from the File for your device and operating system. Most of
menu, click on the Details tab, select Spool these downloads will be self-executing. All
Settings . . . , and click Print Directly To you have to do is download the file, run it,
Printer. In the Spool Data Format drop-down and follow the instructions. In some cases,
menu, choose Raw and then click OK twice.
though, you may need to install the driver
In Windows 2000/XP, select the Advanced manually. The best way to go about this is to
tab on your printer’s Properties box. Check uninstall the existing driver. Ideally, your
the Print directly to the printer option, then device will have a Start menu item noting
click the Print Processor . . . button. In the
Default data type area, select
RAW. Click OK twice to save
the new settings.
Error Message: An “illegal
operation error” occurs when
you try to print or scan.
Translation: No, the
Good manufacturers make driver installations easy for you. This
printer police aren’t en route
example shows Samsung’s laser printer driver instructions.
to your desk. You probably
have a corrupted printer driIf you keep getting jams, you may need to ver, that little piece of software that tells
clean the unit. Consult your manual (most man- your operating system how to work with the
ufacturers make manuals downloadable in PDF printer. Your driver could have been corformat) for specific instructions on how to do rupted by a virus, hard disk damage, or an
144 • PC Errors
incompatibility glitch from a newly installed
application, among other things.
Solution: Reinstall or update your device
driver. Most printer and scanner manufacturers will post several driver revisions to their
support sites after a product’s initial release.
You may want to uninstall your present driver
before upgrading or replacing drivers.
some sort of “uninstall” or “driver maintenance” routine. If so, run this and remove the
current driver. If not, check the Add/Remove
Hardware
Large print jobs troublesome? Use the printer
Properties to reduce your output resolution.
Programs list in Control Panel and look for
driver software for your printer. In some cases,
you’ll want to check the hardware Device
Manager in Control Panel. For instance, if
you’re trying to uninstall a scanner, click the
plus sign (+) next to Imaging Devices, rightclick your scanner, and select Uninstall.
With the current driver eliminated, look at
the new file you downloaded. If it’s a compressed file, such as one ending in .ZIP,
uncompress it to a folder you’ll remember. If
it’s an .EXE file, simply double-click on it in
My Computer to run it. Now, go back into
Device Manager and click Action, Scan for
hardware changes. Windows should detect
your device and either locate the correct new
driver on its own or let you point Windows to
the proper location where you stored the
uncompressed files. Your device should reappear in Device Manager with no exclamation
point next to it, and you’ll be innocent of further illegal operations.
Error Message: “Error 20—Memory Overflow” (on the printer’s readout).
Translation: A large print job has flooded
and locked your printer’s memory. This is especially common in older systems where print job
memory management wasn’t handled as well
as it is under modern operating systems.
Solution: Your options here will vary
depending on your hardware and needs. If
you’ve recently moved the printer and are
seeing a lot of this error, then your memory
module(s) may have come loose and simply
needs to be reseated. Consult your manual to
see where your printer’s memory is located
and how to access it. While you’re there, consider if perhaps your print jobs are becoming
larger than they used to be. If so, try adding
more memory to what you already have.
Your manufacturer likely sells upgrade modules, but you may score a better deal with a
third party such as Viking (www.viking
components.com).
If hardware tweaking isn’t an option, try
tackling the problem from the software side.
If your job is graphical in nature, try lowering
the output dpi (resolution) in the File, Print
Setup options. Dropping a job down from
600dpi to 300dpi may not give the output
quality you want, but if your print job works
at the lower resolution, then you know you
need more memory. Also try disabling print
spooling as detailed above.
most larger USB devices, such as printers and
scanners. You want to use a USB hub (preferably with support for USB 2.0) with AC power;
although, be aware that we’ve seen plenty of
cases where a device refused to work (or conflicted with another device) on even a powered
hub. The surest bet is to plug the device
straight into a PC’s USB port. If you have a
choice, use the USB ports in the back of the PC
because there is always a chance that the
cables providing USB to the front of the case
may have come loose.
Also, be aware that there are many documented cases of a PC’s native USB ports still
not having enough power for a printer or
scanner. Both Dell and NVIDIA (with the
nForce chipset) have documented instances
of this. You might be able to work around
this by using a properly powered USB hub.
And if that’s not frustrating enough, there
are also some cases (older Belkin models for
one) where the powered hub doesn’t supply
enough power for the device. You just need
to experiment. RS
Error Message: None (because the device
isn’t being detected by Windows).
Translation: You plug in the printer or
scanner and nothing happens. No driver
requests. No entry in Device Manager. Nada.
Solution: There are plenty of possible
causes as to why Windows would fail to
detect your USB printer or scanner when you
plug it in. The most obvious is that you
haven’t plugged in the device’s power cord.
(Don’t feel bad—everybody does it.) Slightly
less obvious is that your operating may
not support USB. Specifically, Win95 and by William Van Winkle
Windows NT do not fully
support USB functionality. The printer software
should kick out an error
Error Message:
The printer indicates that it has received an
message about an “unsup“Offending Command”.
ported operating system”
when you try to install it.
Translation:
As entertaining and/or accurate as it might
Upgrade to Win98 or later
be to assume this means you’ve told the
and see if this fixes the
printer to go do something unmentionable to
problem.
itself, it actually means that the printer can’t
A lack of device resoutput your file. Often, this has to do with
ponse might also fall under
erroneous PostScript code involved in the
another area . . .
software used to generate the PDF document
you’re trying to print.
Error Message: Various
(including initialization
Solution:
If possible, set your printer to PostScript
errors and “scanner not
Level 1 or Level 2. If that doesn’t help, try
found”).
changing the fonts in your document to
Translation:This is a
something simple, such as Arial or Times New
catch-all entry. Power-relatRoman. Some systems choke on overly-intricate
ed problems can spawn any
fonts or unusual characters. If you’re still
number of odd errors.
scrambling, try using the Print As Image option
Solution: Plug the deon your print menu. This will print each page
vice directly into your PC’s
as a big graphic rather than text. It’s a slow
USB port. Many USB hubs
process, but it’s better than being stalled.
are non-powered, meaning
Finally, as with nearly any other computer
they have no AC power
error, try the most obvious thing: reboot.
running to them and only
That includes turning the printer off for five
rely on the power coming
seconds and then turning it back on. ■
through the USB connection. This is insufficient for
Most Unusual Error Message
PC Errors • 145
Hardware
Sound Solutions To
Audio Problems
Clearing Up What You Can Hear
udio errors fall into a variety of categories because some you can hear and
others you can’t. Then there are popular and less popular sound cards along with
those embedded audio chips. Let’s take a look
at some of the more common errors to come
up with a good, sound solution.
A
Sound Blaster/Creative Labs Errors
The Creative Labs Sound Blaster sound
cards are amongst the most popular series of
cards available. To that end we thought we’d
look at this series first.
Once you have disabled the device’s mixer
features, reopen your Audigy application
and the error should be gone.
Error Message: “Ctplay2.exe/Eacontrol.exe
has encountered a problem and needs to
close. We are sorry for the inconvenience.”
This message appears in WinXP after
installing a Creative Labs Audigy card and its
attendant software.
Translation: Windows hasn’t properly
adjusted its settings to make the Audigy your
new default sound card.
Solution: Go into the Sounds And Audio
Devices area of Control Panel. Click Sounds
And Audio Devices and then the Audio tab. In
the Sound Playback area, use the Default
device pull-down menu to select your Audigy
card. Click Apply and then OK.
Error Message: PlayCenter 3 or Surround
Mixer gives an error in “CTDPROXY.DLL”
or “Ctplay2 has generated errors and will be
closed by Windows.” This applies to the
Sound Blaster Audigy family under
Windows 2000/XP.
T r a n s l a t i o n : PlayCenter and
Surround Mixer are applications that
come with Audigy sound cards and
interact with the CTDPROXY.DLL
driver module. Most likely there
is another audio device—probably
either another audio adapter or a
USB (Universal Serial Bus)-based
device with audio capabilities—somewhere in the system conflicting with
this module.
Solution: Go to the Sounds area in
Control Panel and click the Hardware
tab. You should see a list of devices in
the following order: optical drive(s),
You may not hear anything from your system if Windows
Audigy card, Creative game port,
does not know which audio adapter to use.
Audio Codecs, Legacy Audio Codecs,
Media Control Devices, Legacy Video
Capture Devices, and Video Codecs. If you Error Message: “Could not create file for
see additional devices listed after these, high- recording, please ensure the recording folder
light each in turn as necessary and click the exists.” This message occurs when using the
Properties button. If you see a Mixer Devices Creative Recorder that ships with your
item, click the plus symbol (+) next to it, Sound Blaster to record a WAV file.
select the mixer device listed, and then click
Translation: Creative Recorder defaults to
Properties (yes, again). Check the option for storing files at a specific folder location. If the
Do Not Use Mixer Features On This Device. system can’t find the folder, this error pops up.
146 • PC Errors
Solution: Use Windows Explorer or
My Computer to browse to the C:\PROGRAM FILES\CREATIVE folder. Highlight
the Recorder folder and click File, New, and
Folder. Give the new folder the name
RECORDINGS. This is the specific folder name
Creative Recorder is looking for.
Other Sound Errors
Okay, so you’ve gotten comfortable with the
Sound Blaster cards. It’s time to look at other
types of audio-related errors.
Error Message: “Access to the specified
device, path or file is denied.” This message
can occur in Win2000 OSes when you insert an
audio CD for playback.
Translation: When you pop an audio CD
into your system, the autoplay function
defaults to using the built-in audio player in
Win2000. However, if you install a third-party
player, and especially if you delete that player, Windows can get confused about the proper path or file with which to play your disc.
Solution: This one is a bit tricky. The system
file you need to modify is hidden, so the first
thing to do is “unhide” it. From the Desktop,
right-click My Computer and select Explore.
From the Explorer File menu, select Tools,
Folder Options, the View tab, and then
Show Hidden Files And Folders. Now
uncheck the options for Hide Protected
Operating System Files and Hide File
Extensions For Known File Types. Click
Yes on the warning box that will appear
and then click the Apply and OK buttons.
Now click Start, Search, and For Files
Or Folders. In the Search For Files Or
Folders field, type the name sysoc.inf,
confirm that you’re searching in the C:
drive, and click Search Now. When the
file appears in the search results area,
double-click it and then select the
Notepad application to open the file
with. Within Notepad, locate the line
that starts with “old base components.”
You want to remove the command and
HIDE characters so that the line goes
from reading MultiM=ocgen.dll,OcEntry,multimed.inf,HIE, to MultiM=ocgen.dll,OcEntry,
multimed.inf,7. Next, locate the line that starts
with “AccessUtil=” and delete the word Hide
from it. Save the file and close Notepad.
You’re almost done. Dig into the Add/
Remove Programs area of Control Panel,
click Add/Remove Windows Components,
Hardware
Accessories, Utilities, and Details. Check the
Multimedia box and then click OK. Click Next
and, if prompted for it, insert your Win2000
CD-ROM. Click Finish. When you reboot the
PC, everything should be back to normal.
Error Message: “Your Sound Card does
not support hardware buffering. Sound will
only playback from software buffers.”
You will see this when attempting to
run the Microsoft DirectX Diagnostic
tool (dxdiag.exe).
Translation: This error will appear on
systems using VIA’s AC’97 audio codec,
which you only need to worry about if you’re
using the integrated audio on a VIA-based
motherboard. What the message really means
is that your audio system doesn’t support the
22,050Hz audio sampling rate, which is one
frequency tested for by DXdiag. Microsoft
notes that this problem only applies to the
WinXP operating systems.
Solution: Relax. The built-in mixer within Windows will automatically switch to a
sampling rate that is supported by the VIA
codec. Your actual playback or recording
will remain unaffected.
Error Message: “Code 28 (The drivers for
this device are not installed).” You may see
this message in your sound card’s device properties after upgrading from Win2000 to WinXP.
Translation: In the process of upgrading
your operating system, the WDM (Windows
Sound System Compatible) drivers are deleted. WinXP no longer needs these files, so
they are eliminated. The problem is that
your sound card’s software is designed to
look for these files.
Solution: Check with your sound adapter
manufacturer for new drivers specifically
compatible with WinXP. If such driver’s
don’t exist, you’re out of luck and your
sound card will not work.
Speaker Errors
“Huh,” you say, “I’ve never seen a speaker
error message.” Quite right. Speakers don’t
generate error messages. We wish they did!
Still, we’ve collected some of the most common speaker-related glitches you’re likely to
encounter, and we hope the solutions will be
music to your ears.
Error Message: Humming or buzzing gets
louder as the volume is raised in your operating system or sound application.
an option in your environment.
Midlevel speakers should be at
least 2 feet from your ears,
and the high-end equipment
(Logitech Z-680, Creative
GigaWorks, and so on) should
be at least 3 feet away.
A good quality sound card,
such as those from Creative
Labs or M-Audio, should
not introduce additional hiss
into your playback at reasonCheck your mixer settings if you can hear some speakers but
able volume levels. You’re
not others. Oh, and make sure your speakers are plugged in.
more likely to pick up hiss
from very cheap sound cards
Translation: Often, this is the result of a or bottom-quality integrated sound adapters
poor wire connection to the sound card, built into motherboards. The easiest way
although it can also result from a lot of electro- to test this is to plug in a good quality
magnetic interference being pumped out by a sound card to replace your existing audio
poorly shielded component within the system, adapter. If the extra hiss vanishes, you’ve
especially the power supply.
pinned your problem.
Solution: Unplug and replug all internal
and external wire connections to the sound Error Message: You can hear audio, but not
card, making sure that each is firmly seated. from all of the speakers.
Also make sure that in your sound mixer softTranslation: There are several possible
ware (in Windows, double-click the speaker causes for this. The most obvious is that one
icon in your System Tray) you have the CD or more of the speakers is damaged or that
volume slider set to maximum and the the speaker jack in your amplifier/subMaster/Play Control slider at a lower level. Be woofer is damaged. The only fix for this is
sure to mute any devices not in use.
replacement, but there are some other more
As for buzz from poor shielding, this is a likely possibilities, too.
harder item to fix as finding the culprit often
Solution: Most surround sound speaker
involves swapping out suspect parts. You can sets use three audio cables: green for the
try unscrewing the power supply from the front left and right, orange for the
case without unplugging any wires and let it center/sub, and black for the rear left and
run outside the chassis to increase distance right. Many sound cards use the same color
from the sound card, but this can be a more coding on their jacks to make sure that
involved operation than many beginners are you plug the right cables into the right
willing to undertake.
holes. However, some cards don’t do this
(Audigy cards in particular, which rely on
Error Message: You hear background hiss you putting a color-coded sticker on the
from your speakers, even if nothing is playing.
card’s backplane), and some users accidentalTranslation: A certain amount of hiss is ly mix up the colors anyway. Misrouted
inevitable in any amplified playback device. speaker signals may not play properly, so
This is figured into the specs of your speak- double-check your connections.
ers during manufacture. At a reasonable
Next, bring up your audio adapter’s chanrange of volumes and a recommended listen- nel mixing software. You should see someing distance range, you should not be able to where in the software (perhaps in the
hear any hiss. With your ear against the advanced settings) a set of sliders or similar
speaker, you will hear some. The thing to be controls for your different speaker channels.
aware of is that hiss can increase to notice- Make sure that all of your channels are
able levels because of poor quality compo- cranked up and not muted.
nents in your sound adapter.
If none of these ideas works, try plugging
Solution: You may be too close to the the speakers into a different PC. If this works,
speakers. See if there is a way to get them then your sound card is likely broken. RS
further away from you. Many speaker models can be mounted to a wall, and this may be by William Van Winkle
PC Errors • 147
Hardware
Video Card & Monitor Errors
Some Are More Visible Than Others
ere’s the good news: Our in-house
experience with hundreds of video
cards and monitors leads us to believe
that you can cure more than 90% of all videorelated problems by updating and properly
configuring your graphics card’s drivers. The
bad news is that there are still plenty of errors
that can hit when you least expect them.
We’ve singled out some of the most prominent
glitches you’re likely to encounter.
H
loose connection between the card and the
wires in the slot.
(NOTE: AMI/Award has two additional beep
codes that can signal video card trouble. The first is
one long beep followed by two short beeps. The second
is one long beep followed by three short beeps. Both
essentially mean the same thing: Your video card is
dead. If you get one of these errors and reseating the
card doesn’t work, try using it on another computer.
If you still don’t have video, your card is dead.)
Error Message: Cycles of eight beeps when
you try to power up the PC. This is called a
“Display Memory Read/Write Failure” and can
happen on systems that use the AMI/Award
BIOS (Basic Input/Output System).
Translation: This beep sequence indicates
a video card memory error.
Solution: In the old days, you used to be
able to pull the memory modules off of video
cards and replace them. Now, video memory
is hardwired into the circuit board, and
Error Message: “The device cannot start.
(Code 10).”
Translation: This can occur with NVIDIAbased display cards when the PC does not assign
the correct system resources to the adapter.
Solution: For starters, know that this could
be the result of incorrect drivers or a conflict
with previous drivers from a different card vendor. You should download the latest ForceWare
drivers from NVIDIA at www.nvidia.com/con
tent/drivers/drivers.asp and follow NVIDIA’s
instructions for proper installation.
If new drivers don’t help, then you probably
need to make a quick change to one of your
BIOS settings. You can access the BIOS by tapping the DELETE key when your system
checks its memory during boot up. (If in
doubt, keep hitting DELETE about twice per
second from the time the system first lights up
until you see the main BIOS screen.) Now,
somewhere in the BIOS Features area, you
may find an option called Assign IRQ To VGA.
This is especially prevalent on older systems.
This option must be enabled. (Some newer
boards may lack this option and merely enable
it automatically.) Save your settings and exit.
You can increase hardware acceleration in your
display properties to fix some playback errors.
it would cost more in labor to replace
the memory than buy a new video card.
However, before you run out for a replacement, try removing the card from the system,
blowing any dust or dirt out of its slot, and
firmly reseating it. The problem could be a
148 • PC Errors
Error Message: “Cannot Create Video
Window” or “Create Overlay Failed” or
“Playback Failed Due To One Of The
Following Reasons . . .” or a similar error in the
interActual DVD Player software. Similar errors
may be seen in other DVD playback titles.
Translation:Your video adapter has
insufficient resources to play back your
DVD-Video content.
Solution: First, make sure your video
adapter is doing as much work as possible.
Check your hardware acceleration settings by
right-clicking on the Windows Desktop and
You can cause video problems if your
screen resolution is set too high.
selecting Properties. Click the Settings tab and
then the Advanced button. In many systems,
you’ll then want to click the Performance tab,
but this can vary according to your drivers. In
ATI’s recent CATALYST drivers, for example,
the hardware acceleration slider is found
under the Troubleshoot tab. When you find
the slider, make sure it is set to Full. Then click
Apply and see if this fixes the problem.
Another way to ease the load on your video
card is to reduce your resolution and color
depth. As above, get to the Settings tab in your
Display Properties. Drop your screen resolution down to 800 x 600 and your color quality
to 16-bit rather than 24- or 32-bit. You may
notice some color banding in your video, but
at least you’ll have ascertained if your card is
up to the task of DVD playback. If so, what
you probably need is a video adapter with
more video memory in order to operate properly at higher settings. If you’re using a video
adapter that is built into your motherboard
and gets its memory by “sharing” RAM, consult your manual on how to allocate more system memory for the video subsystem.
One other thing to try is making sure that you
have DirectDraw acceleration enabled. Click
Start and Run and then type dxdiag. Click the
Display tab and make sure that your DirectX
Hardware
features are all enabled. On that same screen,
double-check that your monitor type is not
You may need to increase your display
settings if your display looks blocky.
listed as Unknown. If it is listed as Unknown,
you should reinstall your monitor driver.
(NOTE: We recently found the exception to the
hardware acceleration rule above while reviewing
JetWay/Mach Speed’s TwinMagic motherboards,
which enable one PC to serve two users simultaneously. We found that with hardware acceleration set
to Full, DVD-Video playback from two DVD drives
to separate users did not work properly. Reducing
hardware acceleration fixed the problem.)
Monitor Errors
Just like speakers, monitors usually don’t
generate errors beyond letting you know that
they’re not receiving a signal. There is one very
common exception to this that we’ll detail in a
second, but otherwise we thought you might
appreciate some info on a couple of other common monitor-related maladies, as well.
Error Message: “Sync Out of Range” You
will see this on an otherwise blank screen.
Translation: Assuming that the data cable
is plugged in correctly, the video card is feeding the monitor a signal stream in excess of
what the monitor can accommodate. The two
main causes for this are that the user has set
either the resolution or the vertical frequency
rate too high. For example, you might set a new
graphics card to display at 1280 x 1024, but if
the monitor is only capable of 1024 x 768 resolution, you’ll get a Sync Out of Range error.
This is especially common in 14-inch monitors.
Solution: Because you obviously can’t make
settings changes from within regular Windows,
you’ll need to reboot into Windows Safe Mode.
When you restart the system, there is a point
during boot up when the system switches from
reporting diagnostics and detected components
to loading Windows. This point is usually
accompanied by a beep and the screen going
black. Just before this point, you want to start
repeatedly hitting the F8 key. This should bring
up a menu of Windows boot options. The one
you want to pick is Safe Mode.
From Safe Mode, right-click the Desktop and
select Properties. Go to the Settings tab and use
the slider to drop your resolution a notch or
two. Reboot and let Windows try to go into
Normal mode. If this still doesn’t work, go back
into Safe Mode and get to the Settings tab of
Display Properties. Click the Advanced button,
go to the Monitor tab, and check your refresh
rate. The lowest advisable rate is usually 60Hz,
although this works better for LCD (liquidcrystal display) screens than CRTs (cathode ray
tubes). Apply the change and reboot.
pliers, you can straighten bent pins and fix the
problem.
If none of this works, you’re probably dealing
with a faulty color gun inside the monitor that
needs repairing at the factory or replacement.
Error Message: You observe image persistence, or “burn-in,” on your display.
Translation: You have left one image sitting
on your screen for so long that you can still see
sort of a ghost image of it when you switch to a
different image or turn the display off.
Solution: With CRT screens, burn-in is permanent, just as it has been with TVs for
decades. This is why CRT users should always
take care to leave a screen saver of some sort
enabled, if only to go into standby mode after
a given period of inactivity.
If you see burn-in on your LCD display,
don’t panic. LCD technology is impervious to
long-term burn-in. All you need to do is leave
the screen off for a while, and the ghost image
should fade away. RS
Error Message: The color on your CRT
looks all messed up.
Translation: There are various possible by William Van Winkle
causes of this.
Solution: If you’re lucky,
your color skewing is a
result of electromagnetic
interference from a nearby
device or static build-up
Error Message:
“You Have Not Connected The
within the monitor. Start
Power Extension Cable To Your XX.”
with trying to degauss your
screen. Some monitors have
Translation:
You guessed it. This is the only thing,
a button to perform this
along with a suggestion to refer to the
task. If yours doesn’t, turn
Getting Started guide, that will display
the monitor off for 15 minon your monitor if you forget to plug
utes; then turn it back on.
the four-wire power cable in to any ATI
Poorly shielded speakers
performance-level card from the
are a leading culprit of monRADEON 9700 PRO forward. Highitor oddities, and these can
end NVIDIA-based cards also require
also cause your display to
a power connection, but at least they
jitter, sometimes violently.
will boot and run in a lower perforThe interference source
mance mode if you forget to plug in
might also be wiring in your
the power. We can't decide which
wall. Try moving the moniapproach is better. But the fact
tor to another place in the
remains that leagues of system
room at least several feet
builders and upgraders everywhere
from its original position. To
are still in the habit of not needing an
isolate potential video card
extra power cable for their graphics
problems, try plugging the
adapter and inevitably will forget and
monitor into a different PC.
boot up without it.
Still stumped? Check
your 15-pin VGA connector
Solution:
Plug in the cable. Tie a ribbon
for bent or missing pins. If
around your finger to help you
you’re gentle and careful
remember next time. ■
with a set of needle-nose
Most Common (And Annoying)
Video Card Error
PC Errors • 149
Miscellaneous
Speaking BIOS
How To Decipher What Your Computer Is Saying
hen you press the power
button on your computer,
the BIOS (Basic Input/
Output System) is the first
thing to swing into action.
The BIOS is actually a piece of software
stored on a chip built in to the motherboard
that is responsible for booting your computer and making sure all of the devices work.
At startup, the BIOS initiates a multistage
process, which includes testing the hardware
and loading the OS. The testing stage, or
POST (power on self test), scans your
devices and system to see if everything is
communicating properly.
BIOS manufacturers have created a code
system to communicate the POST status in
the form of BIOS beeps. Some newer motherboards include a voice recording that literally
tells you the status of your computer. In most
cases, however, we are pleasantly unaware of
the BIOS and its low-tech language. If everything is working like it’s supposed to, all you
hear is a beep, and the computer starts.
W
System Information window, scan the right
pane for BIOS Version/Date under the Item
column. In the adjacent Value column, you
will find the manufacturer and version of your
BIOS. For example, here’s the data you might
see for popular BIOS versions from the two
leading manufacturers:
Phoenix Technologies, LDT 6, 00 PG,
8/21/2003
American Megatrends Inc. 1006.005,
5/6/2003
settings that work best for your computer.
Take caution when changing your BIOS settings because the improper configuration can
prevent the system from recognizing your
peripherals or even from booting. Typically
pressing and holding (or pressing repeatedly) a designated key such as ESC, DELETE,
F1, or F2 as the computer starts up will display the BIOS setup utility. Your manual will
tell you which key to use.
Configure Your BIOS
Occasionally an add-in card may issue
beep codes during the POST that are not
directly associated with the BIOS, which
would explain why your system is operational despite emitting more than one beep. If
you start hearing beeps and your system fails
to fully boot, the problem is not necessarily
that your hardware is faulty. You may simply have jostled components out of place by
moving your system. You can sometimes
solve the problem by reseating (removing
and reinserting) memory modules or other
hardware cards within your computer’s case.
Always practice extreme caution when working with the inner components of your case,
and make sure to eliminate static electricity
by touching a metal surface before handling
any piece of your computer’s hardware. Also
be sure to unplug your computer.
Most computers have the default BIOS configuration set up so that the POST Status
(sometimes called Power On Status, which is
essentially the beep code) is enabled. If you
All Beep & No Work
In the event of a critical error during the
POST, most BIOSes use beeps via the internal
speaker (or external speakers in the case of
voiced messages) to alert you to what’s
wrong. This communication is very rudimentary. During the startup process think of your
system as a metal primate, only instead of
using grunts to communicate territorial rights,
your PC resorts to beeps or a combination of
beeps and pauses to indicate it has encountered specific problems. The “language” your
PC uses depends on what type of BIOS it has.
You have to translate beep codes based on the
model and manufacturer. The two most dominant BIOS manufacturers are AMI (American
Megatrends, Inc.) and Phoenix Technologies,
but there are many others.
To determine your BIOS manufacturer and
version number, click Start and Programs (All
Programs if you’re using Windows XP).
Navigate to Accessories, click System Tools,
and then click System Information. In the
150 • PC Errors
Using the BIOS (Basic Input/Output System) configure menu, you can disable or enable the POST
(power on self test) notification.
don’t hear a beep during a normal boot, check
your BIOS configuration to make sure POST
Status is enabled. The users manual that came
with your computer is your best source for
information on how to access the BIOS setup
utility. You can’t assume that one Phoenix or
AMI BIOS setup utility will look the same as
any other setup utility by Phoenix or AMI; the
setup utilities can vary in appearance depending on your system’s hardware and
BIOS version. If you need to enable your
POST status (beep codes) look for something
to the effect of POST Status or POST Notification in your setup utility, and enable it by
using the appropriate key commands, checkboxes, or selectable options.
Your system’s manual will likely describe
the features of your BIOS and include the
What’s That Beep?
Decode That Code
■ American Megatrends Inc. If your computer came with an AMI BIOS, and it fails to
boot after your internal speaker emits one,
two, or three beeps, then the problem most
likely lies with your memory modules. Open
your computer case (remembering to dissipate static electricity by touching a grounded
piece of metal). Replace one module at a time
and turn your system on. If the computer
boots up, then you know the memory module
you just inserted is operational. Next, insert
another module and start your system again.
Repeat this process until all modules are
replaced or until the beep code reoccurs and
the boot process fails. If that happens, you
Miscellaneous
to flash update it to solve this problem. You can
visit your motherboard manufacturer’s (not the
BIOS manufacturer’s) Web site for information
on how to update your BIOS, should it require an
update. Reseating or checking the expansion
cards may also lead to an answer to the problem.
Again, make sure to dissipate static electricity
prior to handling your computer’s internal components. You might need to replace the BIOS
should the beeps persist, in which case you
should contact your motherboard manufacturer.
A Phoenix BIOS that beeps once, pauses,
beeps four times, pauses, beeps twice, pauses,
and then beeps once more is alerting you to a
problem with the CMOS (complementary metaloxide semiconductor), which is the memory that
■ Phoenix Technologies. If your computer came stores the BIOS. Attempt to remove all expanwith a Phoenix BIOS, the beep codes consist of a sion cards (except the video card) and then
series of beeps and pauses, which will direct your reseat them one at a time. If the error still occurs,
attention to the appropriate aspect of your system contact your motherboard’s manufacturer as
that is malfunctioning. In the event that your you probably need to replace the CMOS .
When your Phoenix BIOS beeps once, pausPhoenix BIOS beeps once, pauses, beeps twice,
pauses, beeps twice, pauses, and beeps three es, beeps three times, pauses, beeps once, pausmore times, direct your attention to the BIOS es, and beeps one more time, the error lies with
itself. If your BIOS is upgradeable, you may need the memory modules. You should check to see
if your motherboard supports the installed memoAMIBIOS *Source: AMI Beep Code List (v1.6)
ry, or reseat the memory
POST (power on self test)
modules one at a time,
Troubleshooting Tip
Technical Description*
# of Beeps
restarting your system
Reseat memory modules one at a time and replace faulty memory.
1 (booting halted) Memory refresh timer error
after each reseat.
possibilities. Another reason for this error could
be that the CPU fan has failed, so check to see if
it is rotating. Reseating the CPU may also solve
your problem.
If your AMI BIOS beeps eight times, direct
your attention to the system video adapter. In
the event that your video adapter is integrated
with your motherboard, the board may be faulty.
If the video adapter is an expansion card, remove
it (again dissipate static electricity first) and start
your system. If all goes well, reseat the video
adapter card and start your system. If the beep
code reoccurs and the system fails to boot, then
your card is likely to blame. If the system boots
fully, then reseating the card solved the problem.
can conclude that the module you put in last
is faulty. Replace it with a new module and
your system should be fine.
When your system fails to boot after four to
seven, or nine to 11 beeps, it indicates a problem
with your motherboard or your expansion
cards. As before, dispel static electricity and
carefully remove all expansion cards (except the
video adapter) and boot the system. In the event
that the error code occurs again, there is little
you can do but contact the manufacturer of your
motherboard or system. If the error does not
occur, replace the expansion cards one by one,
starting the system after each new card. Using
this process of elimination, you can determine
which card is causing the problem.
If your AMI BIOS beeps five times, you may
be looking at a processor error. At this point you
should contact the manufacturer of your computer, though the company will likely tell you
that you need to get a new CPU. In instances
where a serious error such as this occurs which
requires a significant investment to repair, you
should attempt to duplicate the error several
times to eliminate any other (possibly cheaper)
2
Parity error
Reseat memory modules one at a time and replace faulty memory.
3
Base memory read/write test error
Reseat memory modules one at a time and replace faulty memory.
4
Motherboard timer not operational
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
5
Processor error
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
6
8042 Gate A20 test error (cannot Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
switch to test mode)
7
General exception error
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
8
Display memory error
Remove and reseat video card; if integrated, motherboard may be faulty.
9
AMIBIOS ROM checksum error
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
10
CMOS read/write error
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card). Check CMOS.
11
Cache memory test failed
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
PhoenixBIOS *POST beep codes descriptions published courtesy of Phoenix Technologies.
Beep Patterns (Numerals
refer to number of beeps and
hyphens represent a pause.)
POST (Power On Self Test)
Technical Description*
Troubleshooting Tip
1-2-2-3
PhoenixBIOS ROM checksum error Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card). If
possible, update BIOS.
1-2-3-3
1-3-1-1
Error in DMA-Controller
Test DRAM refresh
1-3-1-3
1-4-2-1
Keyboard-controller test failure
CMOS read/write error
Contact the manufacturer, service motherboard, or replace motherboard.
Reseat memory one at a time and replace faulty memory, or check to see if
motherboard supports installed memory.
Reseat memory one at a time and replace faulty memory.
Remove and reseat all expansion cards one at a time (except video card).
Check CMOS.
Post Script
The lack of an industrywide standard for BIOS
beeps means that to successfully troubleshoot your
beeps you need to look up
your BIOS manufacturer’s
beep code list for your
particular BIOS version.
Phoenix and AMI both
have downloadable PDF
documents that detail beep
codes and what they refer
to. You can obtain a list of
AMI BIOS beep codes at
www.americanmega
trends.com/support
/bios.cfm. Phoenix beep
codes are available at www
.phoenix.com/resources
/biospostcode.pdf. RS
by Andrew Leibman
PC Errors • 151
Miscellaneous
The Fatal Exception Error
Deciphering Processor Exception Codes
alk about a scary sight. No one likes to
see error messages on their personal
computer, but some Windows messages
are downright alarming:
“A fatal exception 0E has occurred
at 0028:xxxxxxxx in VXD IFSMGR(04) +
0000D4F1. The current application will be
terminated.”
FEEs (fatal exception errors) don’t mean
that anything has died—not your computer
and unfortunately not even that annoying
paper clip in Microsoft Office. They do mean
that Windows 9x/Me/XP has encountered an
error so severe that the application or the OS
can’t continue to run. An error message like
the one above can show up in its own window
or in a full-screen announcement often called
a Blue Screen of Death (for more on the dreaded BSOD, see “Big, Bad & Blue” on page 7.
Usually, you can bring the computer back to
life with a reboot. Unfortunately, the problem
that caused the error could remain unsolved.
Sleuthing out a solution can be tricky, so it pays
to learn about FEEs and why they occur. Read
on for a deeper understanding of FEEs and for
tips to help you troubleshoot your system.
T
Post-Mortem
Microsoft says that FEEs happen most often
when you’re launching an application or starting or shutting down Windows. Several things
152 • PC Errors
can cause them, the company says, susceptible to excessive heat, just like RAM
modules. They can also be physically damaged
such as:
“Access to an illegal instruction has if they’re dropped or even set down roughly.
The same goes for your PC’s motherboard,
been encountered.” The application
has an error in its programming or is or main circuit board. If any memory modules
trying to do something that the OS or or device cables aren’t completely connected,
you’ll see at least some errors. Dirty electrical
processor can’t logically let it do.
“Invalid data or code has been contacts, kinked cables with broken wires
accessed.” Some data or part of the inside, faulty capacitors, and hairline cracks in
application may be corrupted or written the motherboard are some of the most elusive
sources of maddeningly intermittent errors.
incorrectly.
All of these causes mean that there can be a
“The privilege level of an operation is
invalid.” The application is trying to do wide variety of FEEs. Windows offers a helping hand by breaking these down into types.
something without permission.
Most often, buggy software is to blame for Let’s have a closer look at the Win9x/Me error
these problems. Applications often have pro- message above.
“A fatal exception 0E has occurred
gramming mistakes that ask the computer to
do something it can’t or shouldn’t, which the at 0028:xxxxxxxx in VXD IFSMGR(04) +
OS will report as an FEE. Occasionally, appli- 0000D4F1.”
The 0D is a hexidecimal number code that
cations that work fine by themselves may
conflict with each other to cause trouble like tells you the type of FEE you’re dealing with.
this. Viruses and worms can also muck These codes range from 00 (0) to 09 (9) and
from 0A (10) to 11 (17). Microsoft offers a list of
things up.
Some hardware problems can also spawn technical descriptions of each kind of FEE (go
FEEs. Your computer’s RAM modules store the to support.microsoft.com and search for article
OS, applications, and data the PC is currently 150314). You can also search for specific types
using as electric charges within solid-state mem- of FEEs in WinXP, such as general protection
ory chips. These memory chips need constant faults, in Microsoft’s Knowledge Base. We’ve
electronic refreshing, as they can’t retain data for listed the main errors below in the Customary
long without power. If the RAM isn’t of the FEEs section of this article.
highest quality, it doesn’t
take much to disrupt the
delicate balancing act of
storing 150MB or more
data in a typical computing
session. Heat buildup can
also affect RAM’s ability to
properly store data, which
is why a computer without
good ventilation will typically have more errors than
a cooler-running PC.
Because Windows uses
some hard drive space as
extra room for the RAM,
calling it virtual memory,
any problems on your Microsoft’s Knowledge Base has grown into a highly useful resource.
drive can crop up as FEEs. This particular article (search for 150314) discusses all the fatal
Hard drives tend to be exception errors common to Windows 9x/Me.
Miscellaneous
“VXD IFSMGR” names the file involved in the
error, with the file extension switched around to
the front. In other words, it’s Ifsmgr.VXD.
The parts of the error message with numbers,
such as “0028.xxxxxxxx,” designate things such
as the part of the program’s code (the list of
instructions that makes up the application) that
triggered the error. These numbers are probably
only of interest to the software developer.
WinXP tells you the type of error in a more
plain-English way. Here’s an example from
Microsoft. This error happens when someone
tries to run AOL 4.0 on WinXP:
“WAOL caused a General Protection Fault
in module SUPERSUB.DLL at 0001:325B”
Customary FEEs
Some FEEs are much more common than
the others, so we’ll hit the highlights here.
A GPF (general protection fault; [type 0D])
is kind of the catch-all category among FEEs,
so you’ll probably see it the most. This also
makes its root cause harder to pin down.
However, Microsoft says that GPFs often stem
from a memory problem.
Data corruption in RAM should be your
chief suspect here. That could mean faulty
RAM modules, memory sticks not seated
properly, and/or too much heat.
Microsoft also says that GPF errors can also
happen if the computer’s video adapter has a
faulty or corrupted driver (software that lets
an OS use a hardware device, such as a printer
or sound card). Some software that expects
certain video adapter driver settings, such as
Hardware Acceleration set to Full, can cause a
GPF if the drivers are set otherwise. Old multimedia applications can also be to blame, as
well as missing system files, the company says.
A page fault (0E) happens when the OS
can’t find the data it’s expecting to discover in
virtual memory on the hard drive. A page
refers to the section of RAM or virtual memory
storing a piece of data. A page fault can also
occur if the OS tries to access data in the wrong
way or if a VXD (virtual device driver) file is
located in the wrong folder on the hard drive.
A stack fault (0C) occurs when an application tries to access data that it thinks is stored
outside its assigned stacks or areas of memory
allocated to it.
Resurrection
Click the Details button in the error window
if one is offered. Jot down the first line or two
of the error message so you can look it up later.
You don’t have to include all the “Press any
key to continue” parts, but you should write
down the type of error and filename, such as:
“A fatal exception 0E has occurred at
0028:xxxxxxxx in VXD IFSMGR(03) + 000CF7C”
Sometimes you can close an error window
and try to continue your computing session. If
you can, run an antivirus scan. Some nasty bugs
can get a better toehold on your system during
the bootup period before antivirus and anti-spyware software starts to run, so it’s a good idea to
first try to root out any possible nasties before
you shut off your PC.
More often after an
FEE, you’ll have to reboot.
This is especially true if
your error message came
in the form of a blue
screen. To do this, press
CTRL-ALT-DEL, press
your PC’s reset button, or
shut the computer off and
turn it back on again after
a few moments.
If Windows suggests that
you start it in Safe Mode, do
so for now. Safe Mode starts
the OS with only essential
drivers and processes. This
Besides buggy applications, hardware device drivers are often to
may let you more easily
blame for fatal exception errors. Video card drivers top the rogues’
troubleshoot the problem
gallery, so if you encounter FEEs, you may need to spend some time
that led to the FEE, especialbrowsing the FAQ section on the Web site of the manufacturer that
ly if a third-party app or
produced your card.
driver is to blame.
Windows will probably offer to run ScanDisk to check for errors resulting from the
reboot, as Windows can only properly end all
its processes when you shut down the normal
way (click Start, Shut Down, and OK or Shut
Down). Let the disk scan run a complete check
of your drive.
If you didn’t see any FEEs before you
installed a new program, there’s a strong likelihood that the new application is at least
partly to blame. Uninstall it and reinstall it.
Also, check its manufacturer’s Web site for a
list of FAQs (frequently asked questions), one
of which may describe the problem you’re
having. If so, try the remedy the FAQ suggests. For example, if the application is
known to conflict with another one, you may
need to uninstall one of them or download a
newer version.
The software vendor site’s Tech Support or
Downloads sections may offer updates or
patches you can download and install. Even if
an update’s description doesn’t specifically
mention your problem, it may still fix a bug in
the software that indirectly affects your situation. Likewise, if you suspect your video card
or other hardware, look for a new driver or
FAQs at the manufacturer’s site.
If your FEE seems to have come out of the
blue, try looking it up in Microsoft’s
Knowledge Base for troubleshooting help.
Try keywords such as the type of error and
the file name, such as “fatal exception 0E IFSMGR,” rather than the strings of numbers in
the message.
On the hardware side, make sure that your
computer’s fans are all working and that ribbon cables aren’t blocking the airflow
through the case. With your computer off,
remove and reinstall your RAM modules to
make sure they’re seated properly. RAM
from a quality manufacturer, such as Corsair,
Micron/Crucial, or Kingston, is generally
more trouble-free than cheaper brands.
Finally, check your hard drive for errors
using ScanDisk or CheckDisk and defragment it using Disk Defragmenter. If your
drive has very little free space, uninstall apps
or delete data you don’t need or upgrade to a
bigger drive.
Fatal exception errors can be tricky to diagnose, but now you know that you don’t have
to let them kill your computing fun. RS
by Marty Sems
PC Errors • 153
Error Message Index
Characters-#s
\\computer\resource is not accessible. Access Denied., 101
0x0000008E, 36
0x000000D1, 36
0x4,0,0,0, 35
0xc000026C, 36
400-Bad Request, 128
401 – Authorization Required, see 401 – Unauthorized
401 – Unauthorized, 123
402 – Payment Required, 123
403 – Forbidden, 123
404 – Not Found, 123-124
405 – Method Not Allowed, 127
406 – Not Acceptable, 124
407 – Proxy Authentication Required, 125
408 – Request Timeout, 124
409 – Conflict, 124
410 – Gone, 124-125
411 – Length Required, 125
412 – Precondition Failed, 125
413 – Request Entity Too Large, 125
414 – Request URI Too Long, 125
415 – Unsupported Media Type, 125-126
500 – Internal Error, see 500 – Server Error
500 – Server Error, 126
501 – Not Implemented, 126
502 – Bad Gateway, 126
502 – Service Temporarily Overloaded, see 502 – Bad Gateway
503 – Service Unavailable, 126
504 – Gateway Timeout, 126
505 – HTTP Version Not Supported, 126
80 Wire Cable Not Installed, 139
8042 Gate—A20 Error!, 139
8E STOP, 37
A
A corrupt extension ‘path’ was detected in the Registry., 84
A device attached to the system is not functioning., 33
A disk I/O failure occurred., 86
A duplicate name exists on the network., 101
A fatal exception 00 has occurred at X, 69
A fatal exception 06 has occurred at X., 71
A fatal exception 06 has occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx. The current application will be terminated., 55
A fatal exception 06 has occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx. The current application will be terminated., 55
A Fatal Exception 0E Has Occurred at 0028:<XXXXXXXX>
in VXD SYMEvent(02)+XXXXXXXX., 54
A Fatal Exception 0E Has Occurred at 0028:<XXXXXXXX>
in VXD SYMEvent(02)+XXXXXXXX., 54
A Fatal Exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C00082CD in
VxD VMM(01) +000072CD, 55
A Fatal Exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C00082CD in
VxD VMM(01) +000072CD, 55
A Fatal Exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C001AEEB, 54
A Fatal Exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C001AEEB, 54
A fatal exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C02A0201 in VXD
IOS(04)+00001FC9, 54-55
A fatal exception 0E has occurred at 0028:C02A0201 in VXD
IOS(04)+00001FC9, 54-55
A fatal exception 0E has occurred at 0028:xxxxxxxx in VXD
IFSMGR(04) + 0000D4F1. The current application will be
terminated., 152-153
A fatal exception 0E has occurred at 0028:xxxxxxxx in VXD
IFSMGR(04) + 0000D4F1. The current application will be
terminated., 152-153
A fatal exception XX has occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx, 54
A fatal exception XX has occurred at xxxx:xxxxxxxx, 54
A filename cannot contain any of the following characters:
\/:*?”<>|, 68
A general network error occurred., 83
A network resource shortage occurred., 85
A port with that name already exists. Choose another port
name., 92
A problem exists with the system configuration., 86
A problem has been detected and windows has been shutdown to prevent damage to your computer.
PROCESS1_INITIALIZATION_FAILED, 16
A Product Identification Number is required to set up
Windows 95 (or Windows 98)., 52
A Request To The Host Is Taking Longer Than Expected, 126
A required file kernl32.dll was not found., 33
A Runtime Error has occurred. Do you wish to debug? Line:
XX. Error: YY, 105
A:\ is not accessible. The device is not ready., 31
Access Denied, see 401 – Unauthorized
Access to an illegal instruction has been encountered., 152
Access to PATH\XX was denied., 96
Access to the specified device, path or file is denied., 146
Access was denied because the user name and/or password
was invalid on the domain., 44
Active connections still exist., 86
ActiveMovie not responding, 24
An AOL Error Has Occurred., 133-134
An application error has occurred and an application error log
is being generated. SPOOLSV.EXE Exception: access violation (0xc0000005), Address Parameter1., 96
An error has been encountered that prevents Setup from
continuing. The critical system info file SySetup.inf layout
is corrupt or missing., 79
An error has occurred during configuration of home networking on this computer. For more information, see the
home networking log file., 42
An error occurred sending the command to the application., 98
An error occurred while Internet Connection Sharing was
being enabled. The dependency service or group failed to
start., 45
An error occurred while reconnecting X: to \\computer\resource. This connection has not been restored., 101
An error occurred while saving changes. Some changes will
not be remembered., 99
An error occurred while trying to remove X. Uninstallation
has been cancelled., 66
An error occurred while Windows was working with the
Control Panel file ...\SYSTEM\JOY.CPL, 64
An exception 0E has occurred at X, 70
An exception OE has occurred at XX called from XX in XX,
75
An inconsistency was encountered on the tape in drive letter
XX:. Do not append to this tape., 85
An internal consistency check failed., 83
An internal consistency error has occurred., 86
An internal Windows 2000 error occurred., 82
An Invalid Page Fault In Module KERNEL32.DLL At
025f:Bff87ede, 87
An operations error occurred., 87
An unexpected error (768) occurred at line 5118 in <driveletter>\xpclient\base\boot\setup\setup.c Press any key to
continue., 16
An unexpected error occurred., 42
An unknown error has occurred., 53
Another copy of this application is already running, 35
AOL Has To Reset Your Connection, 133
application name is not a valid win32 application., 33
Application Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
10.0.4009.0. Module Name: winword.exe. Module
Version: 10.0.4009.0. Offset: 00144ad3. Word has detected a problem with the existing normal.dot. Would you
like to create a new normal.dot?, 110
Application Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.55207.4. Module Name: Mso.dll. Module Version:
11.0.5207.5. Offset: 00842bfc., 109
Application Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Mso.dll. Module Version:
11.0.5606.0. Offset: 00059890., 109
Application Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Gdiplus.dll. Module Version:
6.0.3260.0. Offset: 00082f1d., 109
Application Name: Winword.exe. Application Version:
11.0.5604.0. Module Name: Winword.exe. Module
Version: 11.0.5604.0. Offset: 003606fc., 109
AppName: excel.exe. AppVer: 11.0.5612.0. ModName:
gdiplus.dll. ModVer: 6.0.3260.0. Offset: 00082f15., 113
AppName: WinExcel.exe. AppVer: 11.0.5207.4. ModName:
Mso.dll. ModVer: 11.0.5207.5. Offset: 00842bfc. After
closing the error signature, you will see this additional error
message: The exception Illegal Instruction. An attempt was
made to execute an illegal instruction. (oxc000001d) occurred in the application at location 0x31482bfc., 112
Automatic Recovery protects your computer if setup fails. There
is not enough disk space on the drive highlighted below to
store the Automatic Recovery data. This data is temporary
and will be deleted when setup completes., 104-105
B
Bad Command Structure, 40
Bad File Request, 126-127
BAD_POOL_CALLER Stop 0xC2., 95
Bad Sectors Found on Drive X:, 142
BIOS ROM checksum error—System Halted, Insert Disk, 137
Browser Unsupported, 133
Burn Process Failed at YYx (ZZZZKB/s), 142-143
C
C:\Windows\\system32\hal.dll. Please re-install a copy of the
above file., 22
Can’t open uninstall log file XX, 66
Can’t Parse HTTP,127
Cannot Add Form Submission Result To Bookmark List, 127
Cannot copy file to disk, the disk may be full or write-protected, 63
Cannot copy XX: Access is denied. The source file may be in
use., 96-97
Cannot Create Video Window, 148
Cannot delete file name. This file is in use by the following
program: Microsoft Excel. You must close the file before
proceeding., 114
Cannot delete XX. This file is in use by the following program: YY. You must close the file before proceeding., 118
Cannot delete: Cannot find the specified file. Make sure you
specify the correct path and filename., 67
Cannot Find a Device File That May Be Needed to Run
Windows or a Windows application., 58
Cannot find autorun.exe, 61
Cannot find the file file name.xls (or one of its components)., 114
Cannot find the file path (or one of its components). Make
sure the path and filename are correct and that all required libraries are available., 115
Cannot find the file X or one of its components, 67
Cannot find the file(s) needed to start this application., 33
Cannot load Remote Access Service Connection
Manager.,43
Cannot modify the drive letter of your system or boot volume,
77
Cannot open file., 71
Cannot open Internet site…, 73
Cannot overwrite XX: The specified file is being used., 97
Cannot Shut Down Windows with USR USB Modem and ATI
Rage 128 Video Adapter, 59
PC Errors • 155
Error Message Index
CD Recording Software Will Cause Windows to Become
Unstable, 39
CDR-101, 33
CD-RW is not under Direct CD’s control, 60
Certificate Services configuration information is corrupted.,
86
Check networking protocol connections . . . TCP/IP CP reported error 733: Your computer and the remote computer could not agree on PPP control protocols., 102
CMOS Memory Size Mismatch, 140
Code 28 (The drivers for this device are not installed)., 147
Computer Configuration\Windows Settings\Local
Policies\Security Options\Shutdown: Clear virtual memory
pagefile., 37
Computer is too fast for current driver software., 84
Connection Refused By Host, 127
Copy. The file being copied is too large for the destination
drive. If possible, insert a higher-capacity disk., 141
Copying . . . XX Minutes Remaining, 143
Copying File or Folder. Cannot copy error_copying: The disk
is write-protected. Remove the write-protection or use another disk., 141
Could not connect to the printer: The system cannot find the
file specified., 91
Could not create file for recording, please ensure the
recording folder exist., 146
Could Not Find Acrobat External Window(s) Handler., 132133
Could not initialize port, 75
Could not load or run XX specified in the Registry. Make sure
the file exists on your computer, or remove the reference
to it in the Registry., 96
Could not start a print job., 91
Could not start print job., 47
Create Overlay Failed, 148
CTDPROXY.DLL, 146
Ctplay2 has generated errors and will be closed by Windows,
146
Ctplay2.exe/Eacontrol.exe has encountered a problem and
needs to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience., 146
D
Damage to the file was so extensive that repairs were not
possible. Excel attempted to recover your formulas and
values, but some data may have been lost or corrupted.,
113
Data Error Reading Drive <XX>, 58-59
Data is invalid, 30
Data or no disc loaded, 61
Delayed Write Failed, 30
Delayed Write Failed, 40
Devices or applications disabled. CD Recording software will
cause Windows to become unstable. Windows has prevented these drivers from loading. Click here for more details., 20
Disk I/O error: Status=00008001 Failed to arcread the boot
partition to check for a disk signature, 79
Disk is not formatted. The disk in drive A is not formatted. Do
you want to format it now?, 31
dmistart caused an IPF in module dmistart.exe at
015f:00401a0c, 55
Drive converter unable to find the drive partition, 65
Drive not responding., 85
Drive X contains errors that must be corrected before the
drive can be compressed., 67
Due to an unexpected error the system cannot be restarted., 98
Duplicate name exists. The name ‘XX’ could not be registered on the Interface with IP address
XXX.XXX.XXX.XXX. The machine with the IP address
YYY.YYY.YYY.YYY did not allow the name to be claimed
by this machine., 47
156 • PC Errors
E
Error 1305: Setup Cannot read XX. Check your network connection or, if you are installing from CD-ROM, be sure
that the YY CD-ROM is in the drive. Click Retry to continue or Cancel to stop the installation., 104
Error 1307 There is not enough disk space to install this file.
Free some disk space and then click ‘Retry’, or click
‘Cancel’ to exit., 104-105
Error 1402. Could not open key., 41
Error 1608. Setup could not locate a version of Microsoft
Office 97, 2000 or XP on the selected drive. Click OK to
stop the installation. If you have a version of Microsoft
Office on CD-ROM, run setup again. For more information, see XX under “Locating a previous version of
Office.”, 105
Error 20—Memory Overflow, 145
Error 214, File Not Found, 131
Error 2229: An internal error has occurred., 43
Error 234: Additional data is available., 102
Error 623: The system could not find the phone book entry
for this connection., 46
Error 629: You have been disconnected from the computer
you dialed. Double-click the connection to try again., 73
Error 629: You have been disconnected from the computer
you dialed. Double-click the connection to try again., 74
Error 630: The computer is not receiving a response from the
modem. Check that the modem is plugged in, and if necessary, turn the modem off, and turn it back on., 74
Error 633. The modem is already in use or not configured for
dialing out., 91
Error 678 – There Was No Answer, 129
Error 691: Access denied because username and/or password is invalid on the domain., 44
Error 692: Hardware failure in port or attached device., 91
Error 692: Hardware Failure in the Modem, 31
Error 745: An essential file is missing. Re-install Dial-Up
Networking., 73
Error 769, 33
Error 769: The specific destination is not reachable., 45
Error 797 – The Modem Could Not Be Found, 129
Error code 800b0001 Signature for Windows 2000
Professional is invalid. Setup had problems registering the
following OLE control dll: WINNT\System32\initpki.dll, 79
Error Copying File or Folder. Cannot copy XX: There is not
enough free disk space. Delete one or more files to free
disk space, and then try again., 142
Error Deleting File or Folder. Cannot delete XX: Access is
denied. Make sure the disk is not full or write-protected
and that the file is not currently in use., 142
Error Deleting File. Cannot delete XX. Access is denied.
Make sure the disk is not full or write-protected and that
the file is not currently in use., 67
Error Loading GDI.EXE. You Must Reinstall Windows, 57-58
Error Loading Kernel. You Must Reinstall Windows., 57
Error loading operating system., 82
Error Loading User.exe. You Must Reinstall Windows, 57
Error Message: An unexpected error has occurred.
(536821760) occurred at line 1768 in
D:\xpclient\base\boot\setup\arcdisp.c, 17
Error performing Inpage Operation., 92
Error Reading Drive <XX>, 58-59
Error Reading From File [Installer Error 1305], 33
Error Starting Program: A required .DLL file,
SUPERSUB.DLL was not found., 74
Error starting the program. The XX file cannot start. Check
the file to determine the problem, 66
Error SU0013 — Setup could not create files on your startup
drive and cannot set up Windows. If you have HPFS or
Windows NT file system, you must create an MS-DOS
boot partition. If you have LANtastic server or SuperStor
compression, disable it before running Setup. See
SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM.,
53
Error SU0018 — Setup could not create files on your startup
drive and cannot set up Windows. There may be too
many files in the root directory of your startup drive. For
more information, see SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or the
Windows CD-ROM., 49
Error SU0129 — Setup was unable to determine your computer’s hardware configuration. Setup cannot continue
and will now close., 49
Error SU0350 — Setup was unable to display the
Nondisclosure Agreement. Setup will now close., 51
Error SU0358 — Setup detected one or more MS-DOSbased programs running on your computer. Close your
MS-DOS programs, and then click OK to continue. Or,
click Cancel to quit Setup., 51
Error SU0515 — Setup was unable to configure your network
components. To continue without network support, click
Yes. To quit Setup, click No., 51-52
Error writing to drive C:, 64
Error writing to LPTx for Printer XX, there may be a problem
with the Network or password is incorrect., 60
Error. A Runtime Error Has Occurred. Do You Wish To
Debug?, 135
ERROR: 0D: 0246: XXXXXXXX Press Key To Continue.,
136
Error: Cannot get main entry point for C:WINDOWSSYSTEMVIPERSTI.CPL. Error:127 [ERROR=127 (7Fh)], 16
ERROR: OE: 0028: C0012D2C, 16
Error: The signature for Windows XP edition Setup is invalid.
The error code is fffffdf0, 16
Error: Warning! Setup failed to remove the setup catalog ieexcep.cat, 16
Error: Warning! Setup failed to remove the setup catalog
sp1.cat, 16
Errors were detected in file name.xls, but Microsoft Excel
was able to open the file by making the repairs listed
below. Save the file to make these repairs permanent.,
113
EXPLORER caused a general protection fault in module
CM8330SB.DRV, 59
Explorer caused a general protection fault in module
qtw32.cpl at X, 69
EXPLORER caused an invalid page fault in module
KERNEL32.DLL, 56
Explorer.exe has encountered a problem and needs to close.
We are sorry for the inconvenience., 42
F
Failed DNS Lookup, 127
Failed to install product catalog., 16
Fatal 0E, 55
Fatal Error: An error has been encountered that prevents
setup from continuing. One of the components that
Windows needs to continue setup could not be installed.
Press OK to view the setup log file., 13
Fatal Error: Setup Cannot Continue. Please Contact
Microsoft Technical Support. (Error: 3E6h), 13
Fatal Error: Setup failed to install the product catalogs. This
is a fatal error. The setup log files should contain more information., 16
Fatal Exception 0D, 54
Fatal Exception 0E at 0028:c028bac6 in VXD
Vwin32(05)+0000281a dmistart timed out waiting for INITCOMPLETE message from c:\programfiles\intel\ldcm\, 55
Fatal Exception Error Message in VXD IOS(04). The current
application will be terminated, 55
Fatal Exception OE At 0028:c001545a; Exception OE At
0028:c81oa23a In vxd AFVXD (01) +0000164a called
from 0028:c00457ec in vxd ND15 (01) + 0000 4860, 130
Fatal System Error: 0x000000a0 (0x00000002, 0x00000000,
0x00000000), 21
Error Message Index
Fatal System Error: 0x000000a0
(0x00000002,0x00070124,0x00000000,0x00000000), 40
File Contains No Data, 127
File Not Found., see 404 – Not Found
Floppy Disk Fail (40), page 138
Floppy Disk is Not Accessible, Not Formatted, or Not
Recognized by Windows, 31
FTP Server could not initialize the socket library. The data is
the error., 83
G-H
General Protection Fault in module XX., 93, 96
Hard disk drive failure, 21
Hard Disk Errors Caused by Damaged Data or Physical
Damage, 58-59
Hardware Monitor Found An Error, Please Check Power
Setup., 138
Helper Application Not Found, 127
Host Unavailable, 127
Host Unknown, 127-128
Hpppt.exe unable to locate component. This application
failed because WNASPI32.DLL was not found., 20
HTTP Error 403 Forbidden Internet Explorer. You Are Not
Authorized To View This Page. You Might Not Have
Permission To View This Directory Or Page Using The
Credentials You Supplied., 136
I
I/O Error, 58-59
Iexplore caused an general protection fault in module
cm8330.drv, 59
IEXPLORE Caused An Invalid Page Fault In Module
<Unknown> At 0000.78581f00., 135-136
Illegal operation error, 144-145
Initializing Device IOS: Windows Protection Error, 68
Insert a writable disc to continue. There is no disc in the
drive. Please insert a writable CD in drive X:, 143
Install.exe is not a valid win32 application, 39
Installer not responding Internal Error 2608, 1332, 81
Insufficient buffer size, unable to proceed., 83
Internal Page Fault, 131
Internet Connection Could Not Be Established, 46
Internet Connection is Required, 46
Internet Explorer Has Encountered A Problem And Needs To
Close. We Are Sorry For The Inconvenience., 134-135
Internet Explorer has encountered a problem and needs to
close. We are sorry for the inconvenience., 45-46
Internet Explorer Script Error. An error has occurred in the
script on this page. Line: 49 Char: 1 Error: This command
is unavailable because the license to use this application
has expired. Code: 0 URL: res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~1\OFFICE10\EXCEL.EXE\3000 Do you want to
continue running scripts on this page?, 135
Internet Explorer Script Error: An error has occurred in the
script on this page, 74
Invalid address was specified for adapter name. This interface cannot be initialized., 86
Invalid data or code has been accessed., 152
Invalid DHCP Lease, 136
Invalid domain or server name., 84
Invalid Drive Specifications, 63
Invalid local device., 72
Invalid page fault in module: kernel32.dll At 015f:bff766f6, 130
Invalid Page Fault, 1
Invalid RDP Data can Cause Terminal Service Failure., 86
Invalid Write State, Could Not Perform EndTrack, Command
Sequence Error, Could Not Perform Fixation…, 142
IRQ_NOT_LESS_THAN_OR_EQUAL, 139
IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL., 88, 94
It is now safe to turn off your computer, 24
J-L
Java Not Enabled, 132
Java Not Installed, 132
JavaScript Error, 131-132
KERNEL_STACK_INPAGE_ERROR, 34
Keyboard Error Or No Keyboard Present., 138
Load needed DLLs for Kernel, 38
Local Area Connection - Network cable unplugged., 103
M
Maximum number of files already open. Close a file or application to open this file., 97
Maximum number of partitions exceeded., 87
Memory Allocation Failed., 87
Memory Test Failed, 140
Microsoft Excel cannot find a match., 115
Microsoft Excel cannot find the data you’re searching for.
Check your search options, location, and formatting., 114
Microsoft Internet Explorer: Internet Explorer cannot open the
Internet site XX: Invalid syntax., 74
Microsoft PowerPoint “hlink.dll” can’t be loaded., 119
Microsoft PowerPoint failed to load “hlink.dll”, 119
Microsoft PowerPoint has encountered a problem and needs
to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience., 116
Microsoft visual C++ runtime library: runtime error! c:\program files\intel\ldcm\ci\ia\ciamngr.exe abnormal program
termination., 55
Microsoft Word cannot install the necessary files due to
Windows Installer Error 1605., 110
Modem in use by another application, 45
Modem is busy or not responding., 91
Mozilla cannot use the profile ‘default’ because it is in use.
Please choose another profile or create a new one., 132
Mplayer2 caused an invalid page fault in module kernel32.dll, 71
MPREXE.EXE caused an exception 03h in module
USER32.dll at X., 70
Msgsrv32 Caused a General Protection Fault in User.exe,
56-57
MSGSRV32.EXE Caused a General Protection Fault in
module CM8330SB.DRV, 59
Msimn.exe has generated errors and will be closed by
Windows. You will need to restart the program. An error
log is being created., 46
Msmsgs.exe not responding, 24
My Network Places: \\computer\resource is not accessible.
The network path was not found., 101
N
Network component upgrade Error copying OEM files from
the specified location. Do you want to cancel this upgrade?, 81
Network Connection Was Refused By The Server, 128
Network logons are paused., 86
Network path not found., 47
NNTP Server Error, 128
No DNS Entry., see Failed DNS Lookup
No ISDN devices were found. Please install an ISDN device
and run the configuration wizard again., 75
No more connections can be made at this remote computer
at this time because there are already as many connections as the computer can accept., 102
No Response, 124
Non-System disk or disk error . . . Replace and strike a key
when ready., 18
Non-System disk or disk error. Replace and press any key
when ready., 92
Not enough memory to run this application., 33
Not enough memory was available to allocate internal
storage needed for the device., 84
Not enough printer memory available to print page., 119
Not enough server storage is available to process this command., 43
Not Implemented, 134
Not ready reading drive X., 92
O
Object Doesn’t Support This Property Or Method.:‘Onmove’,
135
Offending Command, 145
Office Source Engine error: Error 25090. Office Setup encountered a problem with the Office Source Engine,
system error: -2147024703., 105
Operation Timed Out, 132
Override Enabled—Defaults Loaded, 140
P
Page Cannot Be Displayed, 133, 136
PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA, 140
Paper jam, 144
Permission Denied, 128
Permission Denied, 133
Playback Failed Due To One Of The Following Reasons . . .,
148
Please Insert a Disk into Drive A:, 32
Please insert an audio compact disc, 61
Please wait while Windows configures Office XP Pro…, 106
Port Already Open, 74
Port already open., 45
PowerPoint can’t open the type of file represented by XX.,
116-117
PowerPoint can’t open XX because part of file is missing.,
116-117
PowerPoint can’t read XX., 116-117
PowerPoint can’t read XX.ppt., 116
Printer failed to initialize, 144
Problems Restarting Computer with Device Using IRQ 12, 59
Problems With This Web Page Might Prevent It From Being
Displayed Properly Or Functioning Properly. In The
Future You Can Display This Message By DoubleClicking The Warning Icon Displayed In The Status Bar.,
135
Program does not run under Windows., 66
Q-R
Query result parsing failure., 102
RawESR.sys Cannot Be Found, 130
Redirection Limit For This URL Exceeded. Unable To Load
The Requested Page., 132
Registry Startup information is missing or invalid., 84
Remote Procedure Call, 43
Rundll caused a general protection fault in krnl386.exe, 69
Rundll caused a general protection fault in module MMSYSTEM.DLL at X., 70
RUNDLL Error loading irprops.cpl, 37
Rundll32 caused a general protection fault in module
Macw4.drv, 70
Rundll32.exe Has Performed An Illegal Operation, 129
Runtime Error 216 at XX, 75
Runtime Error, 44
S
Saving your settings., 23
Scanner not found, 145
Seek Error - Sector not found, 58-59
Serious Disk Error Writing Drive <XX>, 58-59
Serious Disk Error Writing Drive X., 92
Server service is not started., 47
PC Errors • 157
Error Message Index
Server storage error , 44
Servername\sharename is an invalid port name., 91
Service pack 3 Setup error. An error in updating your system
has occurred., 80
Services.exe - Application Error. The application failed to initialize (0xc0000006)., 32
Setup (.cab) file error Setup has detected the following decoding error: Setup has detected a corrupt setup (.cab)
file. Setup will attempt to recover from this situation, 65
Setup cannot access this disk., 78
Setup cannot create the folder \WINNT\TEMP, 76
Setup cannot load the keyboard layout file Kbdus.dll. Setup
cannot continue. Shut down or restart your computer., 79
Setup cannot set the required Windows XP configuration information. This indicates an internal setup error. Contact
your system administrator., 15
Setup cannot upgrade your current installation to Windows
XP. Your copy of Windows XP does not support upgrading from an evaluation copy of Windows. Setup
cannot continue., 16
Setup encountered an unexpected critical error . . . not all
settings were transferred . . ., 78
Setup Has Detected A Newer Version Of Internet Explorer
Already Installed On This System. Setup Cannot
Continue, 134
Setup has detected the following decoding error: ‘Could not
decode this setup (.CAB) file.’ Setup will attempt to recover from this situation, click OK to continue, 65
Setup has disabled the upgrade option, could not load the file
D:\i386\Win9xupg\W95upg.dll. Setup cannot continue, because this version can only install as an upgrade., 13
Setup has encountered a fatal error that prevents it from continuing. Contact your product support representative for
assistance. The following status will assist them in diagnosing the problem. (0x4, 0x1, 0, 0) Setup cannot continue. Power down or reboot your computer now., 81
Setup has encountered an error and cannot continue.
Contact technical support for assistance. The following
status will assist them in diagnosing the problem. (0x5,
0x1, 0,0) -or- (0x5, 0x1, 0x3, 0) Setup cannot continue. To
quit Setup, press F3., 80
Setup is unable to locate temporary files, 76
Setup.exe is not a valid win32 application., 39
SmartHeap Library. MEM_BAD_POINTER. This program has
performed an illegal operation and will shut down. If the
problem persists, contact the program vendor. X caused
an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll at X., 71
Some of the cells you are trying to change are password protected, but no one password will allow access to all of the
cells. Click OK, and then try editing one cell at a time.,
114
Sorry, You Do Not Have Permission To Press This Key, 134
Speaker errors, 147
Spool32 caused an invalid page fault in module
WNPP32.DLL, 61
Spooler subsystem app has encountered a problem and
needs to close., 47
STG_E_FILEALREADYEXISTS, 40
STOP: 0x0000000A irql_not_less_or_equal., 12
STOP: 0x0000000A, 35, 88, 94
STOP: 0x0000001E (0x80000003, 0xBFC0304, 0x0000000,
0x0000001) [bugcheck code] ([1] [2] [3] [4]), 16
STOP: 0x0000001E KMODE_EXCEPTION_NOT_HANDLED, 17
STOP: 0x0000001E, 26
STOP: 0x0000001e, 36
STOP: 0x00000023 (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) FAT_FILE_SYSTEM., 89
STOP: 0x00000024 (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) NTFS_FILE_SYSTEM., 89
STOP: 0x0000002E (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) DATA_BUS_ERROR., 89
158 • PC Errors
STOP: 0x00000050 (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA., 94
STOP: 0x00000050 PAGE_FAULT_IN_NON_PAGED
_AREA, 16
STOP: 0x00000073 (0x00000001, 0xc000017d,
0x00000002, 0xfc96fcc0) CONFIG_LIST_FAILED, 38
STOP: 0x00000074 (0x00000003, 0x00000002,
0x80087000) BAD_SYSTEM_CONFIG_INFO, 41
STOP: 0x00000077 (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) KERNEL_STACK_INPAGE_ERROR., 88
STOP: 0x00000077, 34
STOP: 0x0000007B, 35
STOP: 0x0000007B: (0xF741B84C, 0x00000034,
0x00000000, 0x00000000) INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE., 90
STOP: 0x0000007E (0xc00000005, 0xFC7F1945,
0xFC9589B0, 0xFC9586Bo) Kbdclass.sys- address
Fc7F1945 base at FC7F1000, Datestamp 3b7d82f3, 23
STOP: 0x0000007F (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4)
UNEXPECTED_KERNEL_MODE_TRAP., 90
STOP: 0x0000008E (0x00000005,
0xBF869F22,0xF9470688,0x00000000), 16
STOP: 0x0000008e, 16
STOP: 0x0000009F DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE,
21
STOP: 0x0000009F DRIVER_POWER_STATE_FAILURE, 27
STOP: 0x000000B8 (0x00000000,0x00000000,0x00000000,
0x00000000) ATTEMPTED_SWITCH_FROM_DPC address 0xf729a248 in XX., 88
STOP: 0x000000C2 (0x00000007, 0x00000fd3,
0x88289700, 0x00000000), 102
STOP: 0x000000C2, 35
STOP: 0x000000D1 (0xFF8BA000, 0x00000002,
0x00000001, 0xF3AAA40E)
DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL, 102
STOP: 0x000000D1 (68b6a590 00000002 00000000
bfda3841), 102
STOP: 0x000000D1, (0x0000002b, 0x00000002,
0x00000000, 0xEEEE1b01)
IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL Kbdclass.sys, 23
STOP: 0x000000EA
THREAD_STUCK_IN_DEVICE_DRIVER, 27
STOP: 0x000000ED (0xaaaaaaa, 0xbbbbbbb, 0xccccccc)
UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME, 14
STOP: 0x9F, 35
STOP: 0xA0, 26
STOP: 0xA0, 34
STOP: 0xc0000218 (0xe11a30e8, 0x00000000,
0x000000000, 0x00000000)
UNKNOWN_HARD_ERROR, 38
STOP: 0xc0000218 {Registry File Failure} The Registry
cannot load the hive (file)., 38
STOP: 0xC000021A (0xParameter1, 0xParameter2,
0xParameter3, 0xParameter4) STATUS_SYSTEM_
PROCESS_TERMINATED., 94-95
STOP: 0xC0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH Path\File_name, 31, 95
STOP: 0xc0000221 Unable to Load Device Driver, 27
STOP: 0xc0000221 Unable to Load Device Driver, 36
STOP: 0xC0000221 unknown hard error
C:\Winnt\System32\Ntdll.dll, 31
STOP: 0xc000026C [Unable to load device driver] Driver, 19
STOP: 0xc000026C Unable to Load Device Driver, 27
STOP: 0xC2, 35
STOP: 0xv0000221 [Unable to load device driver] Driver, 19
STOP: 0xv0000221. Bad image check sum, the image
user32.dll is possibly corrupt. The header check sum
does not match the computed check sum., 19
STOP: c0000218 {Registry File Failure} The Registry cannot
load the hive (file): \SystemRoot\System32\Config\SOFTWARE or its log or alternate, 39
STOP: C0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH, 26
STOP: C0000221 STATUS_IMAGE_CHECKSUM_MISMATCH, 31
STOP: C0000221 unknown hard error Path\File_name, 31,
95
STOP: C0000221 Unknown Hard Error, 31
STOP: The disk media is not recognized, it may not be formatted., 31
STOP: XxXXXXXXD1, 26
STOP: XxXXXXXXED UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME,
27
STOP: XxXXXXXXED, 28
SU5038 — Error in command line., 52
Sync Out of Range, 149
System Busy, 69
System has recovered from a serious error
DRIVER_IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL, 41
System Has Recovered from a Serious Error, 36
System restart has been paused: Continue with system
restart. Delete restoration data and proceed to system
boot menu., 41
System Restore Cannot Run Until You Restart the
Computer., 32
T
TASKMON caused an invalid page fault in module
KERNEL32.DLL, 56
TCP Error Encountered While Sending Request To Server,
see TCP Error
TCP Error, 128
Test Page failed to print. Would you like to view the printer
troubleshooter for assistance? The filename, directory
name, or volume label syntax is incorrect., 91
Test page failed to print. Would you like to view the printer
troubleshooter for assistance? Unable to create a job., 91
The application failed to initialize properly (0xc0150002).
Click on OK to terminate the application., 105-106
The binding handle is invalid., 85
The command cannot be performed because a dialog box is
open. Click OK and then close any open dialog boxes to
continue., 110
The computer name already exists on the network., 86
The computer you are dialing in to cannot establish a Dial-Up
Networking connection. Check your password, and then
try again., 44
The computer you have dialed in to has denied access because the username and/or password is invalid on the domain., 72
The configuration file or the command line has a duplicate
parameter., 87
The configuration file or the command line has an ambiguous
option., 86
The device cannot start. (Code 10) Try updating the device
drivers for this device., 89
The device cannot start. (Code 10)., 148
The device is being accessed by an active process., 84
The device X: is already connected to \\server\resource. Do
you wish to replace the current connection with
\\server2\resource2?, 103
The document caused a serious error the last time it was
opened. Would you like to continue opening it?, 110
The document caused a serious error the last time it was
opened. Would you like to continue opening it?, 113
The drive letter is in use locally., 84
The driver for this device might be corrupt, or your system
may be running low on memory or other resources. (Code
3)., 93
Error Message Index
The driver or network connection that the shortcut ‘target.lnk’
refers to is unavailable. Make sure that the disk is properly inserted or the network resource is available, and
then try again., 72
The dynamic-link library WININET.DLL could not be found in
the specific path., 97
The environment is incorrect., 85
The exception Illegal Instruction. An attempt was made to execute an illegal instruction. (oxc000001d) occurred in the
application at location 0x31482bfc., 109
The file C:\windows\system32\c_1252.nls is missing or corrupt., 19
The file XX is not available., 117
The file XX is unavailable., 117
The file XX that shortcut YY refers to cannot be found, 96
The file you are attempting to play has an extension that
does not match the file format. Playing the file may result
in unexpected behavior., 117
The folder you entered does not appear to be valid. Please
choose another., 47
The following file is corrupted: toside.sys, 41
The following system files have been replaced with older versions by a program you recently ran. These files are currently in use and cannot be automatically repaired.
Windows may not run correctly until you exit and restart
Windows so that the files can be automatically repaired.
C:\Windows\System\XX, 67
The highlighted volumes do not have enough disk space
available for the currently selected features., 104-105
The Issuing Certificate could not be found. The Certificate
Services may need to be reinstalled., 86
The item XX that this shortcut refers to has been changed or
moved, so this shortcut will no long work properly., 96
The local policy of this system does not allow you to log in interactively., 44
The margins of section <n> are set outside the printable area
of the page. Do you want to continue?, 110
The Microsoft Dial Up adapter is in use or not responding
properly. Disconnect other connections and then try
again. If this problem persists, shut down and restart your
computer. Error 645., 73
The modem VxD is not present. Please refer to the troubleshooting section in the User’s guide., 129
The MSIEXEC file is linked to missing export MSI.DLL:222.,
105
The network is not accessible. Unable to find the device on
the network., 73
The page cannot be displayed. Cannot find server or DNS
error., 43
The page cannot be displayed. The page you’re looking for
might have been removed or had its name changed., 75
The Page cannot be displayed., 74
The page cannot be found. HTTP 404 - file not found., 43
The parent directory could not be located., 82
The Password Is Incorrect. Word Cannot Open the
Document., 111
The Password Is Not Valid, 33
The privilege level of an operation is invalid., 152
The Requested URL Was Not Found, see 404 – Not Found
The security database is corrupted., 86
The separator page does not exist., 95
The server could not be located., 84
The server is configured without a valid user path., 82
The source application is busy and can’t respond immediately., 118
The specified extended attribute handle is invalid., 84
The system cannot find message text for message number
0xfffffdf0 in the message file for Syssetup.dll, 16
The system could not log you on. Make sure your Username
and domain are correct, then type your password again.
Letters in passwords must be typed using the correct
case. Make sure that Caps Lock is not accidentally on.,
100
The system has detected an IP address conflict with another
system on the network. The local interface has been disabled. More details are available in the system event log.
Consult your network administrator to resolve the conflict.,
103
The Target can not handle this type of document, 40
The time range specified ends before it starts., 87
The UPS driver could not be opened., 84
The user disk quota information is unusable., 87
The Windows 98 CD was not found in your CD-ROM drive.,
63
The Windows registry or SYSTEM.INI file refers to this device file, but the device file no longer exists. A Windows
virtual device driver (VxD) referenced in the System.ini file
or registry is missing or damaged., 56
The workstation driver is not installed., 85
The workstation is not configured properly., 87
The Workstation service is in an inconsistent state. Restart
the computer before restarting the Workstation service.,
85
The wrong version of the driver has been loaded., 85
There is a crosslinked file on drive X. Please run SCANDISK.EXE from Setup disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM to
fix the problem. Setup cannot continue., 52
There is insufficient memory or disk space. Close extra windows and save your work.,111
There is insufficient memory. Save the document now., 117
There is no dialtone. Make sure your modem is connected to
the phone line., 74
There is not enough memory or disk space to complete the
operation., 111
There was a problem in connecting to the Internet. To attempt to connect again, click Try Again., 46
There was a problem printing to the printer due to an unknown system error., 72
There was an error found when printing the document XX to
LPT1. Do you want to retry or cancel the job?, 92
There was an internal error and one of the windows you were
using has been closed. It is recommended that you save
your work and close all programs, and then restart your
computer., 98
This action is only valid for products that are currently installed., 106
This Application Requires the Windows Installer to Run, 38
This device is not configured correctly (Code 1). To update
the drivers for this device, click Update Driver. If that
doesn’t work, see your hardware documentation for more
information., 93
This operation is attempting to change a filtered range on
your worksheet and cannot be completed. To complete
this operation, the AutoFilter feature in the worksheet
needs to be modified., 114
This operation requires the merged cells to be identically
sized., 115
This program cannot be run in DOS Mode., 15
This program cannot be run in MS-DOS mode, 76
This program has performed an illegal operation and will be
shut down. If this problem persists, contact the program
vendor., 67, 111
This program has performed an illegal operation and will be
shut down. If the problem persists, contact the program
vendor. XX caused an Invalid Page Fault in Module YY.,
97-98
This workbook contains one or more Microsoft Excel 4.0
macros. These macros may contain viruses or other
harmful code. These macros will be disabled., 113
This workbook contains one or more Microsoft Excel 4.0
macros. These macros may contain viruses or other
harmful code. Open this workbook only if you trust the
source. Do you want to enable these macros?, 113
To view this page, you must be connected to the Internet. To
connect to the Internet now, click Connect., 46
Too Many Connections – Try Again Later, see Network
Connection Was Refused By The Server
Too Many Users, see Network Connection Was Refused By
The Server
Too Much Network Traffic, 134
Too Much Network Traffic, see Network Connection Was
Refused By The Server
Transfer Interrupted, 128
U
Unable to allocate required resources. Initialization failed., 83
Unable To Connect To The AOL Service, 133
Unable to create directory., 66
Unable to create or open the file XX., 95-96
Unable to establish a connection with the activation server.
Please check your network settings and confirm that you
are able to connect to the Internet, then try again., 44
Unable to find Setup.exe, 33
Unable To Locate Host, see Host Unknown
Unable to Locate Server, see Host Unknown
Unable to log you on because your account has been locked
out, please contact your administrator., 100
Unable to obtain configuration information for graphics card.,
87
Unable to open port, 62
Unable to open your default e-mail folders. The .DLL file for
the information service could not be found. MAPI was unable to load the information service Pstprx.dll. Be sure the
service is correctly installed and configured., 46
Unable To Print Document, Either Document’s Application Is
Not Installed Correctly, There Is Not Enough Memory To
Load The Application, Or This Application Does Not
Support Printing (For Example Sound Files Can Not Be
Printed), 136
Unable to read drive drive letter:, 33
Unable to read file., 113
Uninstall Option Not Available. There is not enough Space to
save your current operation system. Your computer has
enough disk space for Windows XP, but it does not have
enough to save your current version of Windows for
backup. The backup image size is [number_of_megabytes]
It is recommended that you cancel Setup now, free additional disk space, and then restart Setup., 17
Unknown error., 83, 98
Upgrade Your Browser, 133
User does not have access privileges.,117
User has not been granted requested login type., 47
V
vDisk is not formatted. The disk in drive X is not formatted.
Do you want to format it now?, 141
VFAT Device Initiali-zation Failed. A device or resource required by VFAT is not present or is unavailable. VFAT
cannot continue loading. System halted., 58
Video decoder error, 30
VMM32.VXD Is Required to Run Windows. . ., 56
W
Warning SU0010 — Setup has detected a Boot Manager
partition on your computer. If you set up Windows, you
will not be able to use Boot Manager. For more information, quit Setup, and read SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or
the Windows CD-ROM., 48
Warning SU0011 — Setup has detected a password-protected partition on your hard disk. To set up Windows 95
(or Windows 98), you first need to remove the password
protection. For more information, see SETUP.TXT on
Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM., 48
PC Errors • 159
Error Message Index
Warning SU0012 — Setup detected an OS/2 or Windows NT
file system partition on your hard disk. Files on this partition will not be available when you use Windows 95 (or
Windows 98). For more information, see SETUP.TXT on
Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM., 48
Warning SU0016 — Setup has detected OS/2 files on your
computer. If you set up Windows 95 (or Windows 98), you
may not be able to use OS/2. For more information, quit
Setup and read SETUP.TXT on Setup Disk 1 or the
Windows CD-ROM., 49
Warning SU0019 — Setup has found commands in your AUTOEXEC.BAT or CONFIG.SYS files that are not compatible with Windows., 49
Warning SU0133 — Setup was unable to determine your
system configuration by using full detection. Would you
like to try again using minimal detection?, 49
Warning SU0139 — The directory you specified contains a
version of Windows with a different character set. Setup
cannot upgrade this version. Please choose a different directory., 53
Warning SU0141 — Setup could not copy files needed for
your startup disk. You can still continue with Setup
without creating the startup disk. Click OK to continue., 50
Warning SU0151 — Setup could not verify that your computer has the minimum amount of memory (RAM) required to run Windows 95 (or Windows 98). Do you want
to continue with Setup?, 50
Warning SU0153 — Drive X, the host drive for the compressed Y drive, must have at least Z bytes free to set up
Windows. Free some disk space, and then run Setup
again., 50
Warning SU0159 — The directory X you specified contains a
Windows NT installation. Setup cannot install Windows in
this directory. Please choose a different directory., 50
Warning SU0160 — The directory X which is needed to install Windows into already contains a Windows installation. Please choose a different installation directory., 50
Warning SU0164 — Setup cannot upgrade the version of
Windows in X, because you are running Windows from a
different directory. Please choose a different directory., 53
Warning SU0167 — The specified directory contains a directory named ‘desktop’ that you must move or rename before
Setup can continue. For more information, see SETUP.TXT
on Setup Disk 1 or the Windows CD-ROM., 51
Warning SU0168 — Your computer already has an operating
system installed, which cannot be upgraded by this version of Setup., 53
Warning SU0343 — Setup could not create X. Make sure
you specified a valid drive letter and directory name. Also
make sure the directory name does not conflict with existing files on your drive., 51
Warning SU0344 — The Windows directory X you have
specified does not currently exist. Please verify that the
path is correct., 51
Warning SU0346 — Setup cannot upgrade Windows. The directory X does not contain a valid Windows installation.
Please specify another directory., 53
Warning SU0361 — A Windows registry file was found. If
Windows 95 (or Windows 98) is installed in another directory, continuing with Setup will disable it. Do you want to
continue?, 51
Warning SU0362 — It is not recommended that Setup continue without the proper amount of disk space free. If you
continue, Setup may run out of disk space and not complete successfully., 52
Warning SU0366 — This option disables some of the commands in your AUTOEXEC.BAT and CONFIG.SYS files
to ensure that Windows 95 (or Windows 98) installs correctly and uses the fastest drivers., 51
Warning SU0409 — Windows Setup was unable to update
your system files. This may be caused by virus detection
that is built in to your computer, or by virus detection software running on your computer., 52
160 • PC Errors
Warning SU0516 — Setup ran into problems while trying to
set up the following device on your computer: X Setup
will attempt to install this device later. If problems persist,
run Setup again and choose Safe Recovery when
prompted. Click OK to continue., 52
While initializing device vkd - Windows Protection Error - You
need to restart your computer, 63
While initializing device XX Windows Protection Error, 55
While initializing device: Windows Protection Error. You need
to restart your computer., 83
While setting up DVD-video playback, it was found that XX
Video cannot be shown on the computer monitor because
of one of the following reasons: Low video memory.
Please try using lower display resolution and/or colors.
The display adapter is incompatible with the DVD decoder. Please try to obtain a display driver update., 93
While verifying the integrity of your section files, OneNote detected a problem with the following file: XX.one, 106
Win32k!EXFORMOBJ::vGetCoefficient+0xb., 95
win32sl.exe -i -r ia error, ..\..\dmispio.cpp::320 unable to register with service provider., 55
Windows 2000 Setup could not detect the version of
Windows you are currently running. Setup cannot continue., 77-78
Windows cannot find “search”. You may have typed the
name incorrectly in the Run dialog, or another open program cannot find a system file. To search a file, click the
Start button, and then click Search., 70
Windows cannot find file ‘XX.’ Check the spelling and try
again, or try searching for the item by clicking the Start
button and then clicking Search., 42
Windows cannot find openme.exe, 22
Windows cannot identify all the resources this device uses.
(Code 16) To specify additional resources for this device,
click the Resources tab and fill in the missing settings.
Check your hardware documentation to find out what settings to use., 93
Windows cannot open this file., 118
Windows cannot print due to a problem with the current
printer setup., 119
Windows cannot start this hardware device because its configuration information (in the Registry) is incomplete or
damaged. (Code 19), 28
Windows could not start because the following file is missing
or corrupt: \windows\System32\Drivers\Isapnp.sys, 21
Windows could not start because the following file is missing
or corrupt: \WINNT\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEMced., 99
Windows Media Player cannot find the specified file. Be sure
the path is typed correctly. If it is, the file does not exist in
the specified location, or the computer where the file is
stored is offline., 117-118
Windows Media Player Error C00D10B3 - unable to access
the network., 45
Windows Media Player is not configured for the Internet.
Before you can use the Media Guide or Radio Tuner features, you must be connected to the Internet. To connect
to the Internet, run the Internet Connection Wizard and try
again., 45
Windows Protection Error, 56
Windows XP does not discover Visioneer Paperport One
Touch scanner. It is not USB but parallel only., 28
WINNT32 this program has performed an illegal operation.
WINNT32 caused an invalid page fault in module
KERNEL32.DLL, 13
WinXP could not start because the following file is missing or
corrupt: \WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM, 36
Word cannot complete the save due to a file permission
error., 111
X
XX An error has occurred in your program. To keep working
anyway, click Ignore and save your work to a new file. To
quit this program, click Close. You will lose information
you entered since the last save., 98
XX cased an invalid page fault in module HHCTRL.OCX at
Y, 67
XX Could Not Be Found, 131
XX is not accessible. Unknown Error 2114, 72
XX is read-only. Do you want to save changes to a different
file name?, 118-119
XX.ppt is currently in use. PowerPoint can’t modify it at this
time., 118
XX The above file name is invalid., 97
XX This file exists with Read-Only attributes. Please use a
different file name, 96
XX This file is already in use. Select a new name or close the
file in use by another application., 97
Y
You are not logged onto the Windows 2000 workstation as a
member of the user group that has the right to view the
workstation’s Virtual Memory settings., 85
You Can’t Log On As An Anonymous User, 128
You cannot drag an item into a button on the Taskbar.
However if you do this without releasing the mouse
button, the window will open and you can the drag the
item into the window., 97
You cannot make phone calls or start voice or video conversations with Windows Messenger, 130
You chose to install Windows 2000 on a partition that contains another operating system. Installing Windows 2000
on this partition might cause the operating system to function improperly., 80
You Do Not Have The Plug-In Needed To View The
‘Application/Plug-In’ Type Of Information On This Page.
To Get The Plug-In Now, Click View Plug-In Directory,
134
You Have Not Connected The Power Extension Cable To
Your XX., 149
You have not entered a valid product key. Please check the
number located on the sticker on the back of the CD case
or on your Certificate of Authenticity., 106
Your account has been disabled. Please see your system
administrator., 101
Your Current Login Session Is Expired, Please Re-Login
Before Using Our Services., 132
Your display adapter is not configured properly., 58
Your installation cannot be activated because you have activated up to the limit for your Product Key. For details
about the maximum allowed number of product activations, close this wizard and review the End User License
Agreement, available through the Help menu of this application. If you believe that you are getting this message in
error, click Back and choose the telephone option. The
telephone activation system will provide you the opportunity to speak with a support representative about all activation issues., 106
Your Network Configuration Is Not Complete, 129
Your network is configured such that you cannot make phone
calls, 130
Your password has expired and must be changed., 100
Your password will expire in X days. Do you want to change
it now?, 100
Your Sound Card does not support hardware buffering.
Sound will only playback from software buffers., 147
Your system is running low on Virtual Memory, please close
some applications, 98-99
Your system is low on Virtual Memory. To ensure that
Windows runs properly, increase the size of your Virtual
Memory paging file. For more information see Help, 98-99
Your system is low on virtual memory. Windows is increasing
the size of your virtual memory paging file. During this
process memory requested for some applications may be
denied., 22, 41, 98-99
Was this manual useful for you? yes no
Thank you for your participation!

* Your assessment is very important for improving the work of artificial intelligence, which forms the content of this project

Download PDF

advertisement