Windows XP

Bug with latest xp patches applied.

After I rebooted the pc this afternoon I got an error with svchost.exe. On reporting it to microsoft with a click of the button I got a message “The error “Generic Host Process for Win32 Services Error” occurs after you start or restart your computer.
The error appears in computers with Windows XP Service Pack 2 and security update 873333 (MS05-012) installed. We do not expect this experience to harm your data or the performance of your computer.”
Oops! FIX: Generic Host Process for Win32 Services Error

Phew – the machine boots!

Had a bit of a scare this morning when the home machine refused to boot. Basically the computer froze after displaying the Bios version and CPU speed and refused to go any further. After taking everything out this evening it booted up so I then tried to remember what I had changed, and then remembered the (non powered) USB2 hub I got last week. Unplugged it and the machine booted up ok. Plugged it back in again, with nothing attached to the hub and the same thing happened. Therefore the hub is now sitting on my desk. Not sure whether I can be bothered going through the hassle of getting it replaced…the weird thing is that the hub works when the machine is booted up. Having said all that I’m wondering if the PSU is being maxed out as the machine also refuses to boot if I have a usb thumbdrive plugged into it when I boot up.

Windows Update Group Policies

Seeing as though its been a long time since i’ve done much work with Group Policies, it took me a long time to work out why the policy for disabling Windows Updates within IE and the start menu would not work, yet the settings for telling where the client should go to get its updates did work.
Eventually I read a website which tipped me off and is actually obvious when you think about it. I had created an OU and moved computers into it, but I hadn’t added the users to the OU. Therefore only the computer configs were amended but not the users.
Now that I’ve done it correctly, WUS seems to be working pretty well (apart from one machine that thinks it needs to download .net framework 1.0 patches when in actual fact it needs to download 1.1 patches.

DVD on projector doesn’t work :-(

Tried to watch Independence Day on the XP laptop via the projector screen tonight and failed dismally. At first it wasn’t showing any of the video on the external monitor – just the panel of WMP9. I tried the preview for shrek2 and that did the same thing until I downgraded the hardware acceleration to medium and that worked. Back to ID and that still failed. Did the same thing in WinVideo too.
Then I found a patch for WMP9 that sounded like it would do the trick. Except the patch told me I wasn’t running version 9 or the patch was already installed. GRRRR. Now its too late to do any more digging so its off to bed for an early night. (The weird thing is that its worked before although it might have been on another projector…..)

Offline Files are synchronised all the time

The problem I have with offline files synchronising whenever *anyone* logs off the computer is documented at kbAlertz which although doesn’t reference the site, can be found at KB article 811660). Annoyingly it looks like a call needs to be placed with Microsoft to get this hotfix – or wait until service pack 2 (I guess). Although it doesn’t bother me too much it does annoy the other people in the office when I log onto their computer 🙂

Remote assistance.

I like this Remote assistance in XP. I was able to connect to the parents-in-law PC on Sunday and troubleshoot an anti-virus update problem they had. The performance was stunning and it was as if they were connected on my lan. I don’t know what sort of speed cable is in the states but its certainly faster than UK asdl connections. A 3mb patch from symantec came down extremely quickly. I had to use the same software to troubleshoot a colleagues pc at work this morning. Didn’t work quite as well, the performance was slower and for some reason I couldn’t take control of the mouse and keyboard which it said I had control over, but the screen refresh was good enough for me to talk the end user through the troubleshooting process whilst I watched the output. The end user was happy when they got the problem solved and saved me a 3 hour journey up the motorway to their house.

Windows XP file & settings wizard

Tried to migrate data using the File And Settings Transfer Wizard (FAST) on 98 machine but the software kept failing when it came to import the data saying that it could not find the required data necessary. After running Windows Update on the machine (which had *loads* of updates necessary) the same settings worked ok after a new wizard disk was created and run on the machine. Apparently one of the patches to XP solves certain bugs and issues including FAST ones.