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Bugs Bulletin

[ MSI Engine | MSMs | InstallShield 12 and newer | InstallShield 11.5 | DevStudio 9.0 | IS Dev 8.0 | IS Dev 7.0 | IPWI 2.0 | ISWI 1.x | IS Pro 7.x | IS Pro 6.x | IS Pro 5.x ]

This page lists some problems that have been found in recent releases of InstallShield software. It was created to help you decide whether to upgrade to the respective version or better wait until the problem is fixed.

InstallShield Professional 5.5

Last version: 5.53 (Maintenance Pack 3)
Released: Februray 26, 1999
Download: This download address is also valid for users of the German and Japanese editions.
Notes: This MP fixes the problem with corrupted files in floppy disk or IFTW optimized media builds, and the GPF with EzBatch* and EzConfig* functions that had been introduced with 5.52. It also solves the bug with Kanji characters that were displayed sideways in the setup initialization dialog for Japanese language setups (please see note below if you are affected by this problem).

Known Problems in IS Pro 5.53

Wrong Heading for Dynamic File Groups Window in IDE

If you view the contents of a file group with "dynamic link" type, the caption bar of the file list window says "Static File Links" instead of "Dynamic File Links".
You can ignore the wrong heading. Your dynamic file groups will work correctly.
InstallShield has confirmed that this is a bug in IS 6.22. It is also reproducible in IS 5.5 and 6.1.
Created: 2000-11-04

VXDs Don't Get Updated if Media was Built on Windows NT

If you build your setup on Windows NT, the media build wizard will not extract version information from .VXD and .386 device drivers. As a result, these files won't get updated on a Windows 9x target system, because "any version" in the existing file is considered to be newer than "no version" stored in the CAB for the file you are installing.
The version WinAPI implementation on Windows NT cannot extract version info from .VXD and .386 files. There is a workaround as documented in Microsoft's knowledge base article Q201685, but obviously InstallShield isn't using it.
Install the files to a temporary location, und use InstallShield's version functions to compare file versions. Or create a list of versions of the files in your setup manually, and select the components accoring to a version compare during runtime.
This is a problem in all versions of IS 5.
Created: 2000-06-06

Passwords Readable in Data1.hdr

On the components pane you can specify a password for the active component. In addition you can select that the component should be encrypted. But still the password you specified is stored on your distribution media in Data1.hdr in plain text so that it can be viewed with any text editor.
Even password protecting the whole media (on the Advanced Build Settings dialog in media build wizard) does not help: The media password is also stored as plain text in Data1.hdr.
Use PackageForTheWeb to create a password protected single-file installer from your media. Be sure to use PFTW version 2.03 or above - previous versions didn't use encryption.
This problem is reproducible in IS 5 and IS 6. InstallShield stated that this is by design.
Created: 2000-02-07   Last update: 2001-09-19

TEMP Directory Not Cleaned in Case of Reboot / Error -112 During Setup Initialization

IS 5.53 creates a directory named similar to _istmp1.dir (with a unique number) in the user's TEMP directory, and a _istmp0.dir below it. If setup is finished without reboot, these directories are removed. However, if the user chooses to reboot his system in SdFinishReboot, these directories are left behind (although their content is deleted).
If _istmp99.dir is reached, no more setups can be run on this computer, they fail with error -112.
InstallShield correctly registers all files in SUPPORTDIR for deletion on the next reboot, but omits the directories themselves.
Add the directories to the PendingFileRenameOperations registry key (for Windows NT) or WININIT.INI (for Windows 95/98) using InstallShield's registry or ini file functions. Be careful not to delete other directories!
This problem has been reported by several people in the newsgroups.
Created: 1999-08-07   Last update: 2000-01-12

VarSave() Function Returns 1 For Success

If the VarSave() function is called sucessfully, it doesn't return 0 as documented, but 1.
Test for result < 0 to detect errors.
InstallShield confirmed that this is a known problem in IS5.53.
Created: 11/16/1999

Windows 2000 Identified as IS_WINDOWS9X in 16 Bit Setups

Calling the GetSystemInfo function with the OS parameter returns IS_WINDOWS9X on Windows 2000 instead of IS_WINDOWSNT in setups that were built for Windows 3.x. Setups supporting Windows 9x and NT are not affected.
This problem is reproducible on Windows 2000 RC2.
Corrections: Only 16 bit setups are affected. No workaround.
Created: 11/10/1999   Last update: 11/12/1999

Uninstall Entry Created Under HKEY_CURRENT_USER Instead of HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

The Windows logo guidelines require that the uninstall entry for your software is created under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\<Application Name>. However, on Windows NT under certain conditions, this entry is created under HKEY_CURRENT_USER instead.
If you call ProgDefGroupType(PERSONAL) before DeinstallStart and RegDBSetItem, these functions use the wrong root key.
Call ProgDefGroupType(COMMON) before DeinstallStart and RegDBSetItem.
This problem has been reported by Olav Mueller-Loose
Created: 10/08/1999

Disable(FULLWINDOWMODE) Does Not Uncover the Task Bar

If you want the main setup window to cover the whole screen, but not the task bar at the bottom edge, in previous versions of InstallShield 5 you could call Disable(FULLWINDOWMODE) instead of Enable(FULLWINDOWMODE). In 5.53 this trick no longer works, the task bar is still hidden behind the setup window.
Use the following code to make setup behave like any other maximized window, i.e. cover the whole screen, but leave the task bar visible:
ShowWindow ( GetWindowHandle(HWND_INSTALL), SW_MAXIMIZE );
This problem has been reported by a few users and is reproducible.
Created: 08/31/1999

ComponentSetTarget Fails With Error -132

Sometimes the ComponentSetTarget function fails and ComponentError returns error -132 "The specified media cannot be found", but everthing appears to be correct.
Use ComponentSetData with COMPONENT_FIELD_DESTINATION and the path (not the path variable) for the component instead.
This problem has been reported by several people in the newsgroups, however the conditions to reproduce the problem are not exactly known.
Created: 08/09/1999

"Not Enough Disk Space" on Novell Netware Volumes

The attempt to copy files to a Novell Netware 4.x volume with ComponentMoveData or XCopyFile immediately fails with an "out of disk space" error. The GetDiskSpace function and component dialogs report 0 bytes free space.
This only happens on Windows 95 (Windows 98 and NT are not affected).
It always happens if TARGETDIR is a UNC path, but sometimes also with mapped drive letters.
In most cases, Netware volumes above 2 GB or 4 GB are involved.
In some cases, using the Netware client from Microsoft instead of Novell's solved the problem. Another option is updating Novell's client to the latest version. InstallShield support found that this problem was resolved on by running the 4.6 Client which accesses a Netware 5.0 volume.
Running setup on a machine with Windows 98 or NT (or maybe even Windows 95B) avoids the problem.
The problem does not exist in InstallShield 5.1, so downgrading to 5.1 is also an option.
InstallShield support has been able to reproduce the problem on Windows 95 with UNC paths. Other permutations have been reported in several newsgroup postings.
The problem does not occur with InstallShield Professional 6.

Here are some knowledge base articles that might be related to this problem:

Created: 05/28/1999   Last update: 10/02/1999

VerFindFileVersion only searching WINDIR and WINSYSDIR

VerFindFileVersion should look for a file in the following directories: WINDIR, WINSYSDIR, TARGETDIR, PATH, SRCDIR. However, in IS5.53 it is only searching the Windows and System directories, not the target directory, the PATH environment, or the directory from where setup.exe is runing.
If your first call to VerFindFileVersion has not been successful, use FindFile and VerGetFileVersion to search the other locations. This requires that you call GetEnvVar(PATH, svPath) and StrGetTokens(listPath, svPath, ";") to search all the directories in the PATH environment variable.
InstallShield confirmed that this is a known problem in IS5.53.
Created: 05/15/1999

Cannot load CAB file if not on Disk1

After calling ComponentInitialize to load a CAB file that was created with a different InstallShield project, a subsequent call to ComponentMoveData fails. This only happens if the loaded CAB file is not included on disk 1 of your main setup (i.e. in the same place as your In version 5.1x the CAB could be anywhere, e.g. on another disk or in a different directory.
Insert the CAB file on the Setup Files pane under Advanced Files -> Disk 1 of your parent setup. Or downgrade to version 5.1x.
This problem has been reported by several people in the newsgroups.

Empty Severe message box displayed during setup

Sometimes during setup a blank message box with a white X on a red circle (MB_ICONSTOP) and an OK button pops up. There is no text on that message box. This happens after the call to InstallationInfo.
Insert a Delay(1) after your call to InstallationInfo.
InstallShield confirmed that this is causes by a known memory issue in all versions of InstallShield 5.x (see knowledge base article Q102873)

Suppression of Read-Only File Dialog Box doesn't work

Release notes for InstallShield 5.52 mention a new feature: "The display of the Read-Only File dialog box (which is displayed when the setup attempts to install over a read-only file) can be suppressed by adding the following section and keyname to Setup.ini:
[File Transfer]
Allowed values of OverwriteReadOnly are NoToAll and YesToAll"
This feature doesn't work.
Before you call ComponentMoveData look for existing files in the target directory and remove the read-only flag if present.
Downgrade won't help since this feature is new in InstallShield 5.52.
InstallShield confirmed that this is a known problem in IS5.53.

SdAskOptionsList shows 0K file size

The SdAskOptionsList dialog is often used to display choices that are not related to file media components. Therefore this dialog didn't display any component size information. Appearently this has been broken in MP2. Now at the end of each line a size of 0K is displayed if no size is specified for a script component.
Note that the problem does not occur in the dialog sampler because it uses the previous version of _inst32.ex_
Use MyAskOptionsList instead (available on InstallSite) or the SdAskOptions dialog.
InstallShield confirmed that this is a known issue with IS5.52 and 5.53. It is fixed in InstallShield Professional 6.

Last update: 12/08/1999

Files placed under "Last Disk" in the Setup Files Pane are not included in the Media

Files that you insert under Advanced Files -> Last Disk on the Setup Files Panel should be placed on the last disk in your Media. This option has been broken in InstallShield 5.50: These files never show up on any of your disks.
If you know how many disks your setup produces (and that number is not likely to change) you can work around this by placing the file under Advanced Files -> Other. During media build, specify the number of your last disk as target for this file.
Else your only workaround is to copy the file by hand (or batch) to the last disk after each media build.
InstallShield confirmed that this is a known issue with IS5.50. It is still there in 5.53. This problem is now documented in knowledge base article Q103012.

Known Problems in IS Pro 5.52

Forget about this version. If you need the bug fixes and enhancements introduced with version 5.52, use version 5.53.

Known Problems in IS Pro 5.51

See also: Release Notes for InstallShield 5.5x for information about bugs in 5.51 that have been fixed in later versions.

Error B110 from command line media builder (ISBuild.exe)

If you are building a project with more than 31 subcomponents from command line, ISBuild.exe reports error B110. (Note: there have also been reports that the maximum number of subcomponents is 25, not 31). Error B110 means: "Not enough disk space. - There is not enough disk space to store the built setup. Make sure that you have enough disk space on the drive where you are building the setup." However, there is enough space on your drive.
Use the IDE to build your media, or reduce the number of subcomponents.
InstallShield has confirmed that this is a bug in version 5.51. It has been fixed in version 5.52 (see release notes topic 47).

Kanji characters are displayed sideways in Japanese setups

In the setup initialization dialog, Kanji characters are displayed sideways in setups that support Japanese language.
If you can't update to version 5.53 because of other problems, you can use this (unofficial and unsupported) trick: Basically stay with version 5.51, but take the Japanese _setup.dll from 5.53 and insert it into your 5.51 redistributable directory. This file is located in <InstallShield Program Directory>\Redistributable\Uncompressed Files\0011-Japanese\Intel 32\_setup.dll.
InstallShield has confirmed that this is a bug in version 5.51. It has been fixed in version 5.53.

How to downgrade

To downgrade from MP3 (5.53) to MP1 (5.51) you should first uninstall, then re-install IS5.50 and apply MP1. Note that Maintenance Pack 1 for InstallShield 5.5 is no longer available for download.

To downgrade from InstallShield 5.5x to 5.1 you should uninstall 5.5x, then install IS5.1 and apply MP4 for 5.1.

InstallShield Professional 5.1

Last version: 5.1 Maintenance Pack 4 (Build 5.10.159)
Released: Februray 18, 1999
Notes: This MP fixes the problem with empty Yes/No dialog boxes and some other problems. Currently there are no reports about serious bugs.

InstallShield Professional 5.0

Last version: 5.0 Build 5.00.221
Released: September 2, 1997
Download: This maintenance release is no longer available for download.
Notes: This is the last build of version 5.0 and fixed the most important bugs. There will be no further maintenance releases for 5.0.

InstallShield Professional 5.x Common Problems

Setup Exits During Initialization on Windows 2000 and XP

When you launch a setup created with Professional 5, the initialization progress bar moves up to 99%. Then the setup "dies" without error message or other indication of a problem. This happens on Windows 2000 or above, even if you are logged on as Administrator. (Users of XP Home always have administrator rights)
The path to the temporary directory, stored in the TEMP environment variable, is too long. While previous versions of Windows typically used TEMP paths like "C:\Windows\Temp", new Windows versions use something like "C:\Documents and Settings\Username\Local Settings\Temp".
End users: Temporarily change the TEMP environment variable to a shorter path. You can change it back after the setup is finished. To do this click on Start, then right-click on My Computer. Select Properties, go to the Advanced tab and click the Environment button.
Setup developers: Update to the current version of InstallShield Professional that supports the newer operating systems.
This problem has been reported for setups created with InstallShield Professional 5.5, but probably applies to all 5.x versions.
Created: 2003-04-04   Updated: 2003-08-22

Setup initialization extremely slow when MAPI software is running

When launching setup.exe on a machine that is running MS Outlook or other MAPI software, it takes several minutes from extraction of the temporary files ("Setup is initializing the InstallShield wizard...") until the actual setup program starts. Often users suspect that setup has hung.
The slow down is caused by MAPISP32 not being diligent about servicing its message pump.
The reason that's a problem for IS is that it uses Windows broadcast messages as a form of IPC (interprocess communications). The super evil one is a registered windows message "LOGO_MSG_LOGOSTATUS_30" sent by the 32bit setup portion of IS (_INS5176._MP) which at a minimum causes 16-bit setup.exe to keep the 0-100% dialog up. It's sent for about every 10k extracted from via the Win32 function SendMessage(). As you may or may not know, this is a synchronous function and in this particular case does not return until all the top level windows (visible or not visible) have call Get/PeekMessage. So, if MAPISP32 isn't hot on its message queue, _INS5176 will slow down.
Apparently Notes causes the same problem as well as other MAPI clients. In general, I'd expect any single threaded COM server that was in use (like a MAPI server with another program polling for new mail) to not always be on the queue since it must take some time to do the requested work.
I'll add you can see these messages yourself if you know how to use SPY++ from MSDEV (spy on all windows, restrict the output to registered messages).
(This article is based on information in a newsgroup posting by Clay Mayers)
Another possible cause for slow setups are Virus Scanners - see knowledge base article Q102872 Setups May Run Slowly on Systems with McAffee’s VirusScan Running.
Since the delay is directly related to how big is, a workaround is to reduce the size of that file to as small as possible.
Of course, closing Outlook before you launch setup.exe would also help.
This is a design problem in all versions of InstallShield 5.x and 6.x. Related articles in the InstallShield knowledge base:
Q101260 Slow Setup Initialization on Systems with Lotus Notes Server Running
Q102626 Setup Runs Slowly on Some Systems Running Outlook 98
Q102493 INFO: Closing All Windows Programs Before Running an Installation
Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in Outlook 2000 that can be solved by applying Office 2000 Service Release 1 in the following knowledge base article:
Q249740 OL2000: (CW) InstallShield Runs Slowly When Outlook Is Open
Created: September 1999   Last update: 2000-10-28   InstallShield Tracking Number: n/a

FindAllDirs doesn't find directories with a period in the name

If you call FindAllDirs to retrieve a list of subdirectories, directories with an extension (i.e. with a period in their names) are missing from the list. For example, given the following directory structure:
Calling FindAllDirs("FOO", INCLUDE_SUBDIRS, listDirectories ) only populates the list with "FOO\BAR\", "FOO\BAR.1\" and "FOO\BAR.2" are not listed.
Use WinAPI calls instead of FindAllDirs.
This is a known problem in all versions of InstallShield 5.x.
Created: 08/11/1999



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