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Windows 7: Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?


25 Nov 2009   #1

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 
Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?

I just noticed today that I cannot install or uninstall any programs that depend on Windows Installer (.cab files?). Utilities/programs that come as zip files install just fine. I think my Windows Installer is broken.

I tried to download and install Windows Installer Cleanup... it downloaded fine, but cannot install (Of course! Why doesn't MS offer a zipped version of this utility? I mean, if people want to repair their Installers, why offer the file only as an Installer dependent app??!!).

I did a restore, rolling back about a week. No help.

I tried Acronis and replaced the Windows Installer file... no love.

I opened my external HD and copied the oldest version of Installer from the archive and moved it to Windows... still get the same 2203 error.

Any ideas? Please don't suggest a Repair Install, I just did one two weeks ago, and I'm not doing it again. It took me two whole evenings to get my system back the way I like it.

Are there any other windows files (besides Installer) that I can try replacing/restoring? Can I copy files directly off my Windows 7 dvd?

Thanks!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Nov 2009   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Try creating a new user with admin status - see if that new user can add/remove/install applications.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2009   #3

Windows 7 RTM 64bit
 
 

- From the Administrative Tools menu, open Computer Management.
- Expand the Services & Applications menu item.
- Double-click Services.
- Double-click Windows Installer, then stop the service.
- Launch regedit.
- Open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\MSIServer.
- Select the MSIServer subkey and delete it.
- Exit regedit and reboot the computer.
- Download and install the latest version of Windows installer from the http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/en/default.aspx
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Nov 2009   #4

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Urbwolf View Post
- From the Administrative Tools menu, open Computer Management.
- Expand the Services & Applications menu item.
- Double-click Services.
- Double-click Windows Installer, then stop the service.
- Launch regedit.
- Open HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\MSIServer.
- Select the MSIServer subkey and delete it.
- Exit regedit and reboot the computer.
- Download and install the latest version of Windows installer from the Microsoft Download Center
I don't think there is a installer redistributable for Windows 7... at least, I cannot find it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Nov 2009   #5

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by kegobeer View Post
Try creating a new user with admin status - see if that new user can add/remove/install applications.
I'll give that a try. Thanks!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2009   #6

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 

Nope. The new user couldn't even open the DVD. Many normal functions wouldn't work,it couldn't set up a proper desktop, it couldn't search through explore, it couldn't access any libraries, it couldn't save any snips...

I kept getting an error message that it could find a certain file: C;\Windows\system32\config\systemprofile\Desktop

I should mention that I run custom themes, start orbs, and icons, and I have patched some system files... but the file named in the above error isn't one of them.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2009   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

If you've patched system files and installed custom themes, standard troubleshooting probably isn't going to help. With Windows 7 being so new, it's hard to tell what side effects could pop up with the things you've done.

I know you don't want to hear this, but.... I recommend a repair install. Sorry, that's the only way to ensure the damaged dlls and everything else are replaced. Then, install applications and device drivers, but don't modify any system files or install any custom themes. Backup the system partition - then install and modify your custom files. If you end up screwing things up again, then you restore the entire partition and you'll only have to "screw up your system again with your modified system files".
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2009   #8

Windows 7, Linux
 
 

Easy places to check to see if malware is installed

msconfig (check the startup program)
hkey_local_machine>software>microsoft>windows>currentversion>run I believe?

AHAHA I was right, just checked myself. Blah who needs AV when you know where everything starts from. haha

A good place to start for unwanted processes is hijack this. No really, google hijackthis and download the most recent. do a scan and save the log, it's a neat little program that will show every active process =) I likes it because if something is running or starting that I can't find in msconf or the registry it helps me out a lot.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2009   #9

windows 7 x64 Home Premium
 
 

I took a stroll through the Event Viewer logs, and I think I found a few clues.
Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?-installer-error.png
Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?-installation-error-iii.png
Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?-installation-error-v.png
That first snip leads me to think its a permissions issue. I'm gonna play around with that stuff for a while before I do a repair install... and if the simple patches I did to get a few decent themes is enough to cripple the OS, well, I'm gonna seriously consider dumping it for something else. I'm not gonna choose between MS's craptastic themes, and monthly Repair Installs to fix cascading file corruption.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Nov 2009   #10

Windows 7 Home Premium x64 - Mac OS X 10.6.4 x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stevieray View Post
I took a stroll through the Event Viewer logs, and I think I found a few clues.
Attachment 38703
Attachment 38704
Attachment 38705
That first snip leads me to think its a permissions issue. I'm gonna play around with that stuff for a while before I do a repair install... and if the simple patches I did to get a few decent themes is enough to cripple the OS, well, I'm gonna seriously consider dumping it for something else. I'm not gonna choose between MS's craptastic themes, and monthly Repair Installs to fix cascading file corruption.
Why not use my method for custom themes...there is no risk!
Enabling Custom Themes - Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Windows Installer broken... how to fix it?




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