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shellfolders values keep changing back, 1606 error


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#1 dmcdivitt

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 02:24 AM

I've had a long standing problem with error 1606 installing software. I've uninstalled all net frameworks and all Microsoft software, then rebuilt everything numerous times. I thought I had this fixed after the last rebuild. The most common answer is the shellfolders key, but the folders pointed to must be present, too. Once I set the values to the true folders rather than %USERPROFILE% and that worked. I also used REG_SZ rather than REG_EXPAND_SZ.

To get rid of the 1606 error forever I want to write all the values as REG_EXPAND_SZ with %USERPROFILE% like all the documentation I've read says.

When I write values to the shellfolder key, they keep changing back. They change back to REG_SZ and the previous values. I've used reg files. I wrote vbscript. I booted with another operating system and loaded the hive. I booted to safe mode. They don't change back immediately, but one by one over time the values will start changing back. I tried setting the values, doing a bunch of disk reads to flush the cash, checked the values one last time, then did a motherboard reset. The values still changed back.

The Microsoft fix_it doesn't help. They change back after using that, too.

If I boot to safe mode and watch, they will not change back, except when I boot back normally.

I also tried changing the key ownership and removing update permission from the system user. Still no good.

So there are two things. The data is being persisted somewhere, and some process is monitoring the values. Please help. Thanks

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#2 dmcdivitt

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 02:27 AM

Just now I set the values and all remained the same except AppData. This was over fifteen minutes. I rebooted and all the values are reverted back.

#3 hamluis

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 10:30 AM

Post the wording of the exact error message, please.

System manufacturer and model?

What steps are you taking to install Windows?

Louis

#4 dmcdivitt

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 12:11 PM

The error message is:

error 1606 cannot access network location:.

It's a generic machine, AMD 6000+, 4 gig, windows pro. None of this makes a difference. I'm not going to reinstall windows but I have removed net frameworks and reinstalled. The file dotnetfx_cleanup_tool.zip contains a program to erase all traces of all net frameworks. The fewest files needed to reinstall the frameworks are:
dotnetfx.exe (Microsoft .NET Framework Version 1.1 Redistributable Package)
NDP1.1sp1-KB867460-X86.exe (Microsoft .NET Framework 1.1 Service Pack 1)
dotnetfx35setup.exe (Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5 Service Pack 1)

First auto updates and system restore are turned off. The net cleanup tool is run. Shell folders are set. Microsoft software such as Visual Studio, SQL Server, and Office are uninstalled using RevoUninstaller. A registry cleaner is run. The folders \windows\assembly and \windows\microsoft.net\framework are deleted. The machine is rebooted. The frameworks are installed again. Microsoft Update is done repeatedly until nothing else is found. Microsoft software is reinstalled.

Going through these steps will get rid of the 1606 error sometimes. At work I went through the steps and got everything to install: SQL Server, Visual studio 2008, and Visual Studio 2010. But at home I still cannot install SQL Server or Visual Studio 2010. I've gone through the installer logs numerous times to find the exact place where the 1606 error occurs. I don't remember, and I'm not going to post the installer logs. Everything I've read always points to the shell folders not being correct.

I went to change a program at home with Visual Studio and it would not load the project, giving some silly error. When I went to repair Visual Studio it gave me the 1606 error. I haven't had that for a long time. I don't want to uninstall net and reinstall again. So I thought I'd try a different angle and see if putting REG_EXPAND_SZ values in the shell folder key instead of REG_SZ would make a difference. But the REG_EXPAND_SZ values won't stay!

Last night on three other machines I wrote REG_EXPAND_SZ values with %USERPROFILE%, to see if the values would remain. Some of them stay. Some do not. On this machine I selected \documents_and_settings\david with a tool to see what files are open and by what processes. I killed all the processes except the one having ntuser.dat open. I changed the shell folder values. When I rebooted they all reverted back.

I think windows rewrites the values after first using the values, and mapping %USERPROFILE% to a real path.

#5 hamluis

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 02:27 PM

Sounds to me like your program problems...are the result of your actions with NET Framework.

Any MS Visual application relies on NET to function properly, so much so that each install also contains/installs the applicable version of NET.

Just guessing...I don't have the knowledge to do more than that.

If you do a Google of that 1606 error message...you will find various documentary topics. I looked at a few, but don't know if any relate to your particular situation.

<<I'm not going to reinstall windows but I have removed net frameworks and reinstalled.>>

That's your decision to make...but it seems to me that the possibility of file corruption in Windows might mandate such or at least running the sfc /scannow command.

How To Use Sfc.exe To Repair System Files - http://www.bleepingcomputer.com/forums/topic43051.html

Louis

#6 dmcdivitt

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Posted 11 March 2012 - 04:19 PM

It's been several years since I tried to use SFC. That was a big waste of time. It has you chasing rabbits and doing stuff that doesn't make any difference. After a system has been in place for a long time with whatever updates, even Microsoft updates, SFC doesn't help very much. I think it was a good tool early on.

I don't know if windows is "corrupted". I think it's a very complicated environment.

I'm about to uninstall net, reinstall, and go from there. Each time I have to do this I look to see if there's a new answer. I guess not yet. It doesn't take too long, actually. I just think it's so silly and Microsoft should offer some way to resolve the problem.




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