Category: Windows OS-Level Issues

Download Internet Explorer 11
article #996, updated 218 days ago

Today I found it ridiculously difficult to download IE11 on a Windows 7 box which had not seen updates in a while. If you suffer so, browse here:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/18520/download-internet-explorer-11-offline-installer

Offline installers in many languages.

Categories:   Web Sites   Windows OS-Level Issues

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Enable, Disable, and Delete Windows Explorer Shell Extensions
article #995, updated 219 days ago

Rather a neat tool:

http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/shexview.html

Can eliminate a lot of issues in Explorer.

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   

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Troubleshooting and Fixing Windows VSS
article #274, updated 237 days ago

Some very interesting info:

https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/1b926c85-b866-464b-9590-70506ba9d8ce/vss-issue-event-id-22-12289-12293-error-0×8004230f-failed-to-retrieve-volumes-that-are-eligible?forum=windowsbackup

https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/bb891959#mindiffareafilesize

Here are some steps and info:

http://www.storagecraft.com/support/kb/article/32

Here is a Fix-It from Microsoft for Server 2003, which runs quite a few steps automatically, and does not (this is new) necessarily require a reboot:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/940184

And lastly, here is a patch from Microsoft which can help a lot in Server 2003, even on fully-updated machines:

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;891957

Categories:   VSS   Windows OS-Level Issues

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"Complete Internet Repair" tool
article #982, updated 267 days ago

This can do a lot of good:

https://www.rizonesoft.com/download/complete-internet-repair/

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   

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Login to blank screen, from Vista/2008 through 8.1/2012R2
article #981, updated 268 days ago

If you find that login occurs, but no desktop just blackscreen, add the local users “Interactive” and “Authenticated Users” to the local group “Users”, i.e.:

net localgroup Users Interactive /add
net localgroup Users "Authenticated Users" /add

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   

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The New Hunsinger Windows Update Clog Destructifier
article #979, updated 292 days ago

Mike Hunsinger, who has been addressing Windows Update issues with considerable success over time, recently provided for the following writeup. It is useful when:

  • Windows is running slowly or generally unreliably, needs rebooted frequently.
  • The Windows Update service spikes CPU usage over 70% when it runs.
  • When you check for new updates, it just hangs endlessly on “checking for updates”.
  • The last successful update was years ago.

Steps:

  1. Clean up the system drive.
    • Before Server 2012, use Disk Cleanup (cleanmgr.exe). Be sure to check “service pack backup files” and “windows update”, if the version of Windows you are running gives these as options.
    • Server 2012 and after, use DISM (dism.exe). Run this in administrative CMD:
      dism.exe /online /Cleanup-Image /StartComponentCleanup /ResetBase
      If it reports “The operation could not be completed due to pending operations.”, you have just been told that a server reboot is necessary and you’ll need to do this again afterwards. After it succeeds, do this:
      dism.exe /online /Cleanup-Image /SPSuperseded
  2. Run the following as a .bat file to reset Windows Updates caches and working spaces, rereg some dll’s, It works on all versions of windows, may skip some dll’s depending on the OS version:
@ECHO OFF
echo Simple Script to Reset / Clear Windows Update
echo.
PAUSE
echo.
attrib -h -r -s %windir%\system32\catroot2
attrib -h -r -s %windir%\system32\catroot2\*.*
net stop wuauserv
net stop CryptSvc
net stop BITS
ren %windir%\system32\catroot2 catroot2.old
ren %windir%\SoftwareDistribution sold.old
ren "%ALLUSERSPROFILE%\application data\Microsoft\Network\downloader" downloader.old
regsvr32 /s wuaueng.dll 
regsvr32 /s wuaueng1.dll 
regsvr32 /s atl.dll 
regsvr32 /s wups.dll 
regsvr32 /s wups2.dll 
regsvr32 /s wuweb.dll 
regsvr32 /s wucltui.dll 
net Start BITS
net start CryptSvc
net start wuauserv
echo.
echo Task completed successfully...
echo.
PAUSE
  1. Install .net 4.5.1 from here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=40779
  2. If it says that an =/> version is already installed, run the .net repair tool from here: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2698555
  3. Download the latest version of Windows Update from here: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/949104
  4. Next update IE or Edge to the latest version using a redist, here’s the one for EI11, https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/help/18520/download-internet-explorer-11-offline-installer
  5. Open IE11 or Edge, add update.microsoft.com to trusted sites, popup blocker exceptions, privacy exceptions.
  6. Finally, try re-running Windows Update. The “Checking for Updates” may run quickly, or it may take 4-6 hours to populate results.

We have had the best results by updating in batches after this, first any critical SP’s or major Platform Updates. Then security, Office and the others as deemed necessary. Once you’ve completed a couple rounds of updates, the difference should start exhibiting itself with regards to the symptoms named.

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   Windows Installer and Updates

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Disable 8.3 Filename Generation
article #978, updated 296 days ago

If your software is all new, let’s say 2013 and after, it probably makes sense to disable 8.3 filename generation, for a nice kick of speed.

To do it once for all drives, just do this:

fsutil behavior set Disable8dot3 1

If you want to do it for one select drive, say E:, first do a registry edit in

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\FileSystem

you’ll want to change NtfsDisable8dot3NameCreation to 2. Then you will need to reboot, and in an administrative command prompt:

fsutil behavior set E: 1

and reboot again, and it’s done.

Categories:   Performance   Windows OS-Level Issues

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FRS is deprecated in Server 2008R2
article #970, updated 316 days ago

Some articles:

https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/windows/desktop/ff384840(v=vs.85).aspx).aspx

https://blogs.technet.microsoft.com/filecab/2014/06/25/the-end-is-nigh-for-frs/

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   Active Directory

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Replace DNS settings with static using netsh
article #548, updated 330 days ago

First, set the primary DNS as a static primary, bypassing DHCP for DNS only:

netsh interface ip set dns name="Local Area Connection" static 8.8.8.8 primary

Then, add the secondary DNS:

netsh interface ip add dns name="Local Area Connection" 8.8.4.4 index=2

In the example above, 8.8.8.8 is being set as primary, and 8.8.4.4 as secondary; these are Google’s public DNS servers, quite useful in some circumstances. On many systems the names of the interfaces (above, “Local Area Connection”) will have to be changed, either to “Local Area Connection 2” or something more different for wireless; you can get the names using ‘ipconfig’ (they are prefixed with “Ethernet adapter”, take those two words off and you have it) or GUI.

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues   

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Windows 8 and 10 Application Icon (ex- Start Menu) Locations
article #608, updated 335 days ago

The icons which were used in the “Start Menu” in 7 and before, are still present in Windows 8 through 10, though they are hidden. At the user level, they are here:

%USERPROFILE%\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

At the machine level, they are here:

%SYSTEMDRIVE%\Users\All Users\Microsoft\Windows\Start Menu\Programs

Categories:   Windows OS-Level Issues