Category Archives: Tips

Windows Download Manager and 64 bit Internet Explorer bug

I recently built my first 64 bit monster machine.
Of course, having 64 bit hardware, I couldn’t run 32 bit Windows or apps, so I opted for Windows XP Professional 64 bit.
During the process of downloading drivers and apps from, I encountered a situation where I was trying to download a package from the Office 2007 Beta that is distributed via the Windows Download Manager.
I clicked the link to start the download, but nothing happened.
I figured it must be a security setting.
I changed my settings and tried again.
Still nothing.
OK, so maybe IE has a corrupt DLL or something.
Reinstall IE and try again.
Still nothing.
Mmm… strange…
Then, just for the heck of it, I decided to fire up IE 32 bit instead and try it again.
Tada! The download started as expected.
So, the bottom line is that it appears that IE 64 bit is NOT compatible with the Windows Download Manager so if you run into the same thing on your 64 bit system, just use IE 32 bit to get what you need.

Posted by on August 10, 2006 in Tips


Visual Studio 2005 Installation Problems

OK, I just ended up having to burn one of my MSDN incidents 😦 because I could not get Visual Studio 2005 to install correctly, so I figured I’d blog the solution so someone else could benefit from it.
The Error
The error message I got simply said that Document Explorer 2005 failed to install.  Tracing the event log I got the following:
Product: Microsoft Document Explorer 2005 — The installer has encountered an unexpected error installing this package. This may indicate a problem with this package. The error code is 2908. The arguments are: {FAA7C2AC-4205-4228-BEB6-6E647CCA9FD2}, ,
followed by:

Product: Microsoft Document Explorer 2005 — Error 1935.An error occurred during the installation of assembly ‘Microsoft.MSXML,Version="",PublicKeyToken="b03f5f7f11d50a3a",Culture="neutral",FileVersion="8.0.50727.42",ProcessorArchitecture="MSIL"’. Please refer to Help and Support for more information. HRESULT: 0x80131700. assembly interface: , function: CreateAssemblyNameObject, component: {B1BE189C-054D-4195-9C26-49D28C20DE94}
The Solution
The problem was solved by following these steps:
  1. Uninstall .NET 2.0.
    1. Click "Start".  The Windows Start Menu pops up.
    2. Click "Control Panel".  The Control Panel windows opens.
    3. Double Click "Add/Remove Programs".  The Add/Remove Programs window opens and after some period of scanning for applications, presents you with a list of installed applications.
    4. Select the ".NET Framework 2.0" application and select to remove it.
  2. Delete temp files.
    1. Click "Start".  The Windows Start Menu pops up.
    2. Click "Run".  The Run command window opens.
    3. Enter "%temp%" and click OK.  This will open your Temp folder.
    4. Press Ctrl+A.  This will select all the files in the folder.
    5. Press Shift+Del to delete all files listed that are not locked.  The delete process may abort on error several times stating that a particular file could not be deleted.  Simply unselect that given file by holding down the Ctrl key and clicking the file and continue the deletion.  In my case there were 2 files that could not be deleted in the end.
  3. Add registry key.
    1. Click "Start".  The Windows Start Menu pops up.
    2. Click "Run".  The Run command window opens.
    3. Enter "regedit" and click OK.  This will open RegEdit.
    4. Navigate down to HKLM\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer.
    5. Right click in the right hand pane.  A popup menu with one option, "New" appears.
    6. Click "New".  A new popup menu with several options appears.
    7. Click "String Value".
    8. Change the "New Value #1" text to "Logging".
    9. Double click the "Logging" entry.  The value edit window opens.
    10. Change the value of the key to "VoiceWarmup" & click OK.
    11. Close RegEdit.
  4. Install the .NET Framework 2.0.
    1. Open Windows Explorer.
    2. Navigate to "D:\wcu\dotNetFramework".
    3. Double click "dotnetfx.exe" to install the framework.
  5. Install the Microsoft Document Explorer 2005.
    1. In Windows Explorer, navigate to "D:\wcu\DExplore".
    2. Double click "DExplore.exe" to install the Document Explorer.
  6. Install Visual Studio 2005 as per normal from here.

That worked for me… hopefully, it will work for you too! 🙂



Posted by on August 8, 2006 in Tips


Install Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005

OK, so if you’re a "System Builder" or entusiast and you’re building a Media Center PC, you’ll probably be installing Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005.  From my experience, the installation process is a little buggy.  While installing, you may be prompted for three files that, for some reason, Setup can not find.  After searching around a little bit, I managed to locate the files on the disks.  I’m listing them here together with their location to make the process for myself and others a little easier in the future.
  1. hscsp_w3.ca_ can be found on the Windows XP MCE Disc 2 in the D:\i386\ip folder.
  2. oobedisc.ht_ can be found on the Windows XP SP2 Disc in the D:\i386\lang folder.
  3. mswrd632.wp_ can be found on the Windows XP MCE Disc 1 in the D:\i386 folder.



Posted by on May 6, 2006 in Tips


The loader can not find the ‘C:\DOCUME~1\……\InstMsiW.exe’ file neccesary to load the Windows Installer.

Tip Summary
  1. Run the Setup.
  2. Leave the error dialog window open.
  3. Navigate to the folder, one level above the one listed in the error dialog window.
  4. Copy the listed folder.
  5. Close the error dialog.
  6. Copy a copy of the "InsMsiW.exe" file to the copied folder.
  7. Rename the copied folder, removing the "Copy of " from the name.
  8. Run the setup from the copied folder.
OK, so I was building a new Office 2007 server VPC and I wanted to install the Send a Smile/Frown (SASsetup.exe) on the server.  My client VPC running Windows XP ran the SASsetup.exe installation just fine.
The Send a Smile/Frown tool is the coolest thing I’ve used in a Beta program and it works just great on the client side so I thought it a good idea to also have it available on the server side of things.
The server is running Windows Server 2003.
I double clicked the SASsetup.exe file and what do you know… I got the following error:
As you can see, the installer refuses to run.
This intrigued me and I figured there simply had to be a workaround for it.
So I asked my friend Google.
He didn’t seem to know too much about the topic.
Now THAT really got my curiosity going!
First I reran the setup again, but this time I did NOT click the "OK" button to close the error dialog window.
I opened a Windows Explorer window and navigated my way to the folder that the error dialog mentioned.
The folder looked like this:
I then copied all the files in the folder to the clipboard and navigated up one folder level.
I created a new folder at this level and copied the files into it.
Next I did a search for the "InsMsiW.exe" file on the server.
Obviously and to no surprise I could not find it on the server VPC.
So I then did a search on the client VPC and tada!
I found the file.

Next I copied the the "InsMsiW.exe" file from the client VPC to the same folder.

Finally, I copied the name of the previous temp folder "IXP000.TMP" in this case, to the clipboard.
I then switched back to the error dialog window and clicked the "OK" button.
You will notice Windows cleaning up and removing the IXP000.TMP folder.
At this point, I simply renamed my temp folder to the IPX000.TMP name leaving it looking like this:
At this point, all I had to do was double clikc the "Setup.exe" file to launch the installer.
Here’s the evidence!
The installer completed successfully and I finally had my smileys!

Posted by on April 5, 2006 in Tips


Removing the Language Bar in Windows XP

This one is my most popular post on my old blog at
Since posting it on Christmas Day 2004, I’ve had 36 comments on it!
Anyway, I posted a video version of it on this blog, but sometimes you just want to get striaght to the point, so for those of you who don’t have the time to watch the video, here’s the transcript…
  1. Click the "Start" button.
  2. Select "Control Panel".
  3. Double click the "Regional and Language Options" icon.
  4. Click the "Languages" tab.
  5. Click the "Details" button.
  6. Click the "Language Bar" button.
  7. Uncheck the "Show Language Bar" checkbox.
  8. Click the "OK" button three times.



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Posted by on March 15, 2006 in Tips


Adobe Acrobat Reader loads slow… speed it up!

OK, so I’m on my bill payment site and I click on the bill to view it.  The bill is in .pdf format, so Adobe Acrobat Reader begins to open… tick… tock… tick… tock… tick… tock… FINALLY after a mere 18 seconds, the page is displayed.  True, subsequent loads is faster, but why on earth does it take so long to open!
And so the time came to optimize my Adobe Acrobat Reader load time.
The reason Adobe Acrobat Reader takes so long to load is because of the hoard of API’s it loads.  Most of these are not needed and can be safely ignored.  So here’s my *magical* formula for speeding up Adobe Acrobat Reader load time.
  • Unload any Adobe Acrobat Reader in memory.
    • Bring up the task manager by pressing Ctrl+Alt+Del.
    • Sort by "Image Name".
    • Kill all tasks named "AcroRd32.exe".
  • Navigate to C:\Programe Files\Adobe\Acrobat X.X\Reader replacing "X.X" with your version number.  You will note a "plug_ins" folder.
  • Copy the "plug_ins" folder.
    • Press Ctrl+C
    • Press Ctrl+V
  • Navigate to the "plug_ins" folder.
  • Select all files except:
    • EWH32.api
    • printme.api
    • Search.api
  • Delete all the selected files leaving only the three noted before.

And that’s all it takes.
My Adobe Acrobat Reader load time went from 18 seconds to 2 seconds!!!



Posted by on March 6, 2006 in Tips


How to remove the Language Toolbar in Windows XP

If you run Windows XP or Server 2003, you know what I’m talking about.
That pesky little Language Toolbar that you can turn off but no matter what, the next time you reboot, it’s back!
How do you get rid of it?  Easy…




Posted by on August 2, 2005 in Tips