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  • Windows Update client in Windows 7 also coming for Windows Vista

    Posted on April 2nd, 2009 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    If you have tried out Windows 7 you know that it includes some changes when it comes to Windows Update. The good news for Windows Vista users is that the Windows Update client included in Windows 7 also will be available for Windows Vista. A few days ago the beta program for the next version of the Windows Update client started on Microsoft Connect.

    Some of the improvements that can be seen in Windows 7 and that will be available in Windows Vista are as follows:

    • Reduced number of UAC prompts and the option to allow all users to install any updates.
    • Much better interface and separated optional and important updates.
    • More information when errors do occur, now also with descriptions.
    • Better notification for the user telling them that the computer will be restarted at xx:xx hours and that the user need to save all open documents, if the settings are set to automatically install and restart the client that is.

    If you want to try the new Windows Update client for Windows Vista, go to http://connect.microsoft.com and apply to the program called “MUv4 Beta”.

    More information about setting Microsoft Update to be the default instead of Windows Update by script can be found in this post I made quite some time ago. I’ve also verified that this works in Windows 7 as well as in Windows Vista.

  • Running the localized version of Windows 7

    Posted on April 1st, 2009 By Andreas Stenhall + 5 comments

    I’ve had the chance to offer around 70 slots to users for participating in the beta testing of the localized Windows 7 in Swedish. The interest in this opportunity was amazing and all the slots got filled up really fast. Now, we are all eager for the beta test to actually start.

    Actually I think it is quite interesting and very useful to run the localized client operating systems from time to time. All (at least almost) servers are running in English and that also applies to my workstations and other machines at home.

    A fact is that most users in Sweden actully run the client operating systems in Swedish and by running the localized version of Windows I get a good grip of what all features of the OS, in this case Windows 7, are called in Swedish. This is particularly important when new operating systems arrive such as Windows 7. It is always exiting to learn what some features are translated to in the Swedish version. Let’s see if we get any surprises in Windows 7!

  • Vista SP1 RC installation error 0x80070059 solution

    Posted on November 18th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + 3 comments

    I still do not know the exact cause of why Vista SP1 RC1 kept failing to install on one of my machines, resulting in error code 0x80070059. However I must thank the Microsoftee Darrell Gorter who lead me to the solution, the simple solution I might add. The solution was simply to copy the file winusb.inf from c:\Windows\system32\DriverStore\FileRepository\winusb.inf_0362a280\winusb.inf to c:\Windows\inf. After copying the winusb.inf file there the Vista SP1 RC1 installation completed with no error codes at all!

  • Special character in Swedish alphabet causes Vista SP1 RC1 bug

    Posted on November 17th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    One of the Vista installation bugs (error code 0x80070059) I told you about the other day has gotten a somewhat strange explanation. It seems to be a Swedish alphabet bug with sort order/collation of the “V” and “W” characters. I did some research on the Swedish alphabet and found out an interesting thing. In the Swedish alphabet the letter “W” does not like most other languages alphabets sort after “V”. Instead “V” and “W” are equal and all sortings should be made with the second character, meaning “Windows” will sort before “Voice” and not like in the English language where “Voice” would sort before “Windows”. One learn something every day!

  • First impressions of Vista SP1 Release Candidate

    Posted on November 15th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + 3 comments

    Yesterday evening/night I tried to install the newly released Windows Vista Service Pack 1 Release Candidate on both my work laptop and my main computer at home. The really great parts are that Microsoft added a progress indicator, which after the second restart in an upgrade scenario now indicate at what stage the installation is. There is unfortunately bad news as well, the installation bug I told you about earlier remain. The bug is that every first installation of SP1 installation fail with the error code 0xC004F013, but the second time it always works to install. Another installation issue is that I cannot install SP1 on my main computer, where SP1 installation fail with error code 0x80070059. Let’s see what Microsoft have to say about this!

  • Vista SP1 installations fail with error code C004F013

    Posted on October 18th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + 1 comment

    The first time I installed Windows Vista Service Pack 1 beta on my work laptop it seemed to install fine, but after logging in for the first time it wanted me to activate Vista to be able to continue. Strange I thought and of course I tried to activate it since our MAK key was in the image already. But instead of activating Vista the computer would just restart and the SP1 installation was reverted and the installation eventually was pronounced as failed with error code C004F013. I tried installing SP1 again and then it was installed successfully.

    After doing another Vista deployment and installing SP1 I found out that the exact same thing happened again, and then again on another machine. I then filed it as a bug on Connect as the problem was also occuring with the standalone version as well as the one from Windows Update. Microsoft has now implemented a workaround for the problem but they are still working on finding the origin of the problem to be able to provide a solid solution to the problem.

    I must really say that I’m impressed by Microsoft as they have been very professional and helpful in resolving the Service Pack 1 issues I’ve reported.

  • Vista SP1 change causes Kerberos problems

    Posted on October 14th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    After installing SP1 I can no longer access my network shares which contain my Documents. After contacting Microsoft they have concluded that there actually is a change in the way Windows Vista SP1 handle Kerberos communication. The changes affect only when you use Active Directory to store accounts which is then mapped using altSecurityIdentity to use the password from an external Kerberos server. In my case we are using a Heimdal Kerberos server but the problem might affect users of MIT Kerberos as well. Logging in to the Windows system itself is not a problem, the only problem seems to be when accessing file shares (using CIFS).

    Until the Heimdal Kerberos is patched to solve this problem there is a work around for the problem. On the client computer you have to add a registry key with your domain name and then add a REG_SZ value named “SpnMappings” with the value “.your.domain.com” in the registry key below:

    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\ 
    Kerberos\HostToRealm\YOUR.DOMAIN.COM

    After restarting the computer you can access the network share as expected.

  • Windows Vista SP1 is really an improvement!

    Posted on October 8th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    A few nights ago I spent a lot of time on doing some performance tests about Windows Vista Service Pack 1 for publishing in a magazine. I compared several areas such as copying files from hard drive to another hard drive as well as over both wired and wireless networks. I also ran benchmarking tests with 3DMark06 and PCMark05 as well as the FPS-test in Half-Life 2 Lost Coast and finally I compared extracting files from a zip file. I can just say that Vista with SP1 out-performed Vista RTM in all tests, in some tests by far! This is very promising for the final release but on the other hand it is also a sign of the fact that maybe Vista wasn’t so ready to be released in November last year after all?

    Anyway, in the test of copying files over the wired network the time it took with Vista RTM was 4 minutes and 4 seconds and with Vista SP1 it was 3 minutes and 9 seconds, quite an improvement. Extracting the files with Vista RTM took 2 minutes and 12 seconds while it just took 1 minute and 25 seconds with Vista SP1. Maybe I ought to run the same tests on my XP installation on the same machine, but do we dare to see that result?

  • Dell’s audio beta drivers necessary for deploying Vista

    Posted on October 6th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    Anyone that has tried to integrate the SigmaTel audio driver that Dell provides for Vista in an install.wim has learned that the sound does not work after deploying that image. The effect is that the device seems to be installed correctly in the Device Manager but looking at the speaker’s icon in the notification area or from the Sound control panel just say ”No audio output device is installed”. This is a known bug in the SigmaTel drivers for all Latitude computers utilizing the SigmaTel audio chip, meaning all laptops from Latitude D610, D620 to D630 and all D4xx and D8xx versions as well are affected by the problem . Dell has given me a beta driver dated late July this year but they seem unwilling to give this to the public or to release a new stable driver. I suggest that anyone that experience this problem contact Dell and demand they release a new audio driver for SigmaTel audio cards as soon as possible. The driver  package number is R164710.

  • Service Pack 1 beats the record in restarts!

    Posted on October 6th, 2007 By Andreas Stenhall + No comments

    Service Pack 1 beats all previous records of the number of restarts a Service Pack requires. Normally the number of restarts to install a Service Pack is limited to just one (1) restart but with Vista this number is up to almost ten (10) restarts. First, you have to install a number of hot fixes one at a time just to be able to install SP1 as it requires certain fixes to make sure that nothing breaks during SP1. Installing SP1 itself also requires some five restarts or something like that before the installation is finished. As the SP1 is still in beta one could always hope that this number of required restarts would decrease as we reach the final version of SP1 but Microsoft has declined this. But prior to releasing SP1 Microsoft will start shipping the pre-requisite updates via Automatic Updates so that they are installed well in time before SP1 start shipping.