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Extra Tabs on the Folder properties dialog window


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#1 Subrandus

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Posted 22 September 2009 - 11:06 PM

Hello,

I have two questions that are not critical to the operation of my system but has been driving me crazy in an effort to research them to no avail. The only thing that I am pretty sure of is that it is a problem with the registry.

When I right click on a folder and then click properties, the dialog window comes up with 3 extra tabs. This happens for every folder on my computer. The extra tabs are the same tabs as the My Documents folder shortcut (Target, General, and Sharing) and the target window is C:\Documents and Settings\Owner\My Documents. This results in every folder having an extra General and Sharing tab and a Target tab with the My Documents target in it. Interestingly enough, the virtual folder that is listed in explorer for My Documents has only 3 tabs but the My Documents folder inside Documents and Settings\Owner (the actual folder itself) has the extra tabs just like every other folder.

A possibly connected problem is that the Add/Remove section of the Control Panel no longer has the install dates or useage level for most programs. The dates are in the HKLM uninstall registry keys but they are not being read for some reason.

I have been installing and uninstalling a lot of programs (mostly antivirus, antispyware, firewall, and utility programs) in an effort to clean up and speed up my computer and test a lot of different applications. This effort has been dramatically successful however I am left with these two minor but annoying issues.

I did have an issue a couple of weeks ago with being unable to install microsoft updates which cost me many hours of research and effort with the help of Microsoft Support but I managed to fix it (partly with their help but mostly with web research). Ended up re-installing Office 2003. I think this is when the issue of the missing install dates started as the installed programs since this time are showing the install date.

Any ideas ... especially about the extra tabs?

Screenshot is attached.

Thank you

Sybrandus

Attached Files


Edited by Subrandus, 22 September 2009 - 11:27 PM.


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#2 Andrew

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Posted 23 September 2009 - 12:38 AM

What happens if you click on one of the superfluous tabs?

#3 Subrandus

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Posted 23 September 2009 - 07:21 AM

They open up and their functions control the My Documents folder. For example If I rename the My Documents folder from the extra General tab which is part of all my folders now, the My Documents folder is renamed. The General tab also dynamically updates the My Documents information when I click it. In other words, they have the same exactly the same function as the 3 tabs on the My Documents shortcut.

I also just realized that perhaps the problem could be the shortcut itself (which appears in windows explorer) so I deleted it and it asked me if I was sure I wanted to remove the My Documents Icon from my desktop which was rather strange since the Icon wasn't on my desktop (it was only listed in explorer). I deleted it. Thought for sure that this would solve the problem but it didn't, the extra tabs are still part of every folder's file properties window.

Very Strange.

#4 Subrandus

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 05:43 PM

Does anyone know where the properties dialog box is defined in the registry. Perhaps I could look there and compare my entries with a "correct" entry. I know this can be done with VB (my research went to several pages which talked about creating extra tabs in the properties dialog box) and I know other programs can create extra tabs (Gyrus solutions permissions manager for example) but I know nothing about VB and have never used it and when this problem appeared I had never used a program that added any tabs to the dialog box so I am assuming it is some form of "connection" or corruption in my registry.

Can anyone help?

Thanks so much

Edited by Subrandus, 26 September 2009 - 05:44 PM.


#5 Subrandus

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Posted 26 September 2009 - 11:29 PM

OK ... I think I'm making some progress here.

Downloaded a program to view all my shell extensions and tried disabling them one at a time.

I discovered that disabling the MyDocs menu and properties extension made the problem go away. Now here is where my lack of knowledge kicks in. The DLL associated with this is mydocs.dll. This same DLL has two other shell extensions associated with it which are MyDocs copy hook and MyDocs drop target ... both of which are also connected to MyDocs.dll. If all of these are using the same DLL, then why does only one of these 3 shell extensions need to be disabled (disabling the other 2 resulted in still having the issue).

I renamed the mydocs.dll in the system32 folder and replaced it with the latest copy on my computer which was the NTInstall update. tried re-enabling the shell extension and the problem came back.

I'm looking through the registry to see if I can find something there but hopefully one of you can help me as I'm running out of ideas.

Also I am curious since I would have thought that disabling the shell extension would have resulted in disabling mydocs.dll which in turn would have disabled the My Documents folder but it is functioning just like it should without this shell extension. I also checked and mydocs.dll is currently running. Does this mean that disabling a shell extension and disabling the dll are not the same. Is the shell extension just part of the dll's function.

In any case, I'm hoping that there are enough clues here that someone can tell me how to repair the shell extension so I can re-enable it and have this back to "normal"

Sybrandus

#6 Andrew

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 03:47 AM

DLLs are libraries of functions that other programs can use. Hence, the malfunctioning shell extension was calling on just one function in the DLL file while the others were calling on other functions. Shell extensions are defined in the registry so it's likely that the error is there somewhere.

Let's take a look at some registry keys. Copy and paste this into a blank notepad document, and save it on your desktop as 'foo.bat':
regedit.exe /e C:\CopyHook.reg "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A33-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}"
regedit.exe /e C:\DropHandler.reg "HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}"

Double click on foo.bat to run the batch script.

This batch script will copy the two registry entries named into two text files named CopyHook.reg and DropHandler.reg and save them in the root of the C:\ drive.

Open them up in notepad and copy the contents into your reply. Let's see if they're different than they're supposed to be.

Edited by Amazing Andrew, 27 September 2009 - 03:48 AM.


#7 Subrandus

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Posted 27 September 2009 - 07:30 AM

Thank you so much for your help.

Here are the two files:


CopyHook.reg

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A33-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}]

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A33-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}\InProcServer32]
@=hex(2):25,00,53,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,52,00,6f,00,6f,00,74,00,25,\
00,5c,00,73,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,33,00,32,00,5c,00,6d,00,79,00,\
64,00,6f,00,63,00,73,00,2e,00,64,00,6c,00,6c,00,00,00
"ThreadingModel"="Apartment"
"LoadWithoutCOM"=""


DropHandler.reg

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}]
"EditFlags"=hex:01,00,00,00
@="MyDocs Drop Target"
"NeverShowExt"=""
"NoOpen"="Drag Files onto this icon to store them in My Documents"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}\DefaultIcon]
@=hex(2):25,00,53,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,52,00,6f,00,6f,00,74,00,25,\
00,5c,00,73,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,33,00,32,00,5c,00,6d,00,79,00,\
64,00,6f,00,63,00,73,00,2e,00,64,00,6c,00,6c,00,00,00

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}\InProcServer32]
@=hex(2):25,00,53,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,52,00,6f,00,6f,00,74,00,25,\
00,5c,00,73,00,79,00,73,00,74,00,65,00,6d,00,33,00,32,00,5c,00,6d,00,79,00,\
64,00,6f,00,63,00,73,00,2e,00,64,00,6c,00,6c,00,00,00
"ThreadingModel"="Apartment"

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}\shellex]

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}\shellex\DropHandler]
@="{ECF03A32-103D-11d2-854D-006008059367}"

#8 Subrandus

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 07:22 PM

Problem Solved!

Took a long time but I finally realized that I had two extra subkeys in HKCR\drive and HKCR\directory

They were:

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Drive\shellex\PropertySheetHandlers\{4a7ded0a-ad25-11d0-98a8-0800361b1103}]

and

[HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Directory\shellex\PropertySheetHandlers\{4a7ded0a-ad25-11d0-98a8-0800361b1103}]

Deleted keys and rebooted and presto ... a problem that has taken over a week of spare time to track down is fixed.

How they got there I will never know.

Sybrandus

#9 Andrew

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Posted 28 September 2009 - 08:10 PM

Good to know and thanks for posting the solution!




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