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msgsrv32 'freeze' starting netscape

Posted on 1998-10-04
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Last Modified: 2013-12-28
I've done a fresh install of '98 on an older Acer laptop.  When I start Netscape Communicator 4.0.5, the system 'freezes' and reports from the task list that MSGSRV32 is not responding.  I end the msgsrv32 task and the system resumes without any apparent loss of performance - netscape fires up and works correctly.  

This situation is the same each time the machine is re-started.  The first start of 'any?' application, which is commonly netscape, causes this behaviour.  Once I've ended the msgsrv32 task, all's well until I reboot..

My question, aside from attempting to isolate and fix the problem is a little more general; what is the msgsrv32 task responsible for?  I assume this is the MessageService/32bit.  Is this similar (in function) to the messing service under NT?  

Any and all input is great.  
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Question by:scdavis
14 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:ryanic
ID: 1645905
I encountered this problem before on applications and some hardware drivers that is not very well written.

I am not a software guy so I don't know how to put it to details.

From what I have learnt from a Friend who actually use SoftIce to debug this happening once, there appear to be an error while msgsvr32 is waiting for some return value from some other functions. But because the value never get return, either because the function that is suppose to return the value runs into an error or it ends early then what msgsrv32 anticipated.

It could be hardware related in a sense but I am not that sure. Hope I helped. Thanks.



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by:scdavis
ID: 1645906
I've spent another 2-3 hours tinkering with the machine.  I don't think the problem is from hardware, and there are several applications installed that I am not familiar with.  I'm beginning to wonder if I just have a case of mixed up DLL versions from one of the older applications over-writing a newer version..

I'm still at it, thanks for the information, but it hasn't helped me clear this up yet.  
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Expert Comment

by:cmcgee
ID: 1645907
Check out these KB articles that address the Msgsrv32 hanging up. It is not specific to hanging in Netscape, but does provide good starting points for finding what is causing this to happen.


http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q171/9/77.asp
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q169/9/87.asp


Let me know if this helps,
Craig
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Expert Comment

by:theh95
ID: 1645908
Check this article below, it may helps your problem.

PSS ID Number: Q188803
Article last modified on 08-07-1998
 
WINDOWS:
 
WINDOWS
 

======================================================================
---------------------------------------------------------------------
The information in this article applies to:
 
 - Microsoft Windows 98
---------------------------------------------------------------------
 
SYMPTOMS
========
 
When you shut down or restart Windows 98, you may receive one of the
following error messages:
 
 - MSGSRV32.DLL caused a General Protection Fault in Module CM8330SB.DRV
 
 - MSGSRV32.EXE: An error has occurred in your program. To keep working
   anyway, click ignore and save your work in a new file. To quit this
   program, click Close. You will lose information you entered since your
   last save.
 
When you receive either of these error messages, your computer may stop
responding (hang).
 
CAUSE
=====
 
These error messages can occur if your computer uses a sound card based on
the C-Media CMI8330 sound chip. This sound chip is used as the basis for
several sound cards.
 
RESOLUTION
==========
 
To resolve this issue, contact the manufacturer of your sound card to
obtain an updated driver.
 
If you are unable to contact the manufacturer of the your sound card, you
can try the C-Media Windows 98 sound card driver version 4.10.00.0152 or
later available on the following C-Media Web site:
 
   http://www.cmedia.com.tw
 
Follow the links on this site to the drivers.
 
The third-party contact information included in this article is provided
to help you find the technical support you need. This contact information
is subject to change without notice. Microsoft in no way guarantees the
accuracy of this third-party contact information.
 
If you are unable to obtain an updated driver for your sound card, you can
work around this issue by following these steps:
 
1. Restart your computer in Safe mode. To do so, restart your computer,
   press and hold down the CTRL key until you see the Windows 98 Startup
   menu, and then choose Safe Mode.
 
2. Click Start, point to Settings, click Control Panel, and then double-
   click System.
 
3. Click the Performance tab, and then click File System.
 
4. Click the Troubleshooting tab, and then click to select the "Disable
   all 32-bit protected-mode disk drivers" check box.
 
5. Click OK, and then click OK.
 
6. Restart your computer normally.
 
7. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
 
8. Double-click System, and then click the Device Manager tab.
 
9. Double-click the Sound, Video And Game Controllers branch to expand it.
 
10. Click your sound card, and then click Properties.
 
11. Click to select the Disable In This Hardware Profile check box.
 
12. Click OK, and then click OK.
 
MORE INFORMATION
================
 
C-Media Electronics, Inc., does not manufacture sound cards, but the
CMI8330 sound chip upon which certain sound cards are based. You should
contact the manufacturer of your sound card for information about driver
updates.
 
The third-party product discussed in this article is manufactured by
a vendor independent of Microsoft; we make no warranty, implied or
otherwise, regarding this product's performance or reliability.
 
Additional query words: cmedia CMXXXX exit gpf
======================================================================
Keywords          : kberrmsg kbhw win98 kbfaq
Version           : WINDOWS:
Platform          : WINDOWS
Issue type        : kbprb
=============================================================================
Copyright Microsoft Corporation 1998.


 

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Expert Comment

by:smeebud
ID: 1645909
1st please ro-open you question,
=========
1st, an introduction to "Msgsrv32""
Function of the Windows 95 32-Bit Message Server

Msgsrv32.exe is a program that runs invisibly on the Windows 95 desktop and performs
several background functions necessary for Windows 95 operation. These functions
include:
1. Mediate Plug and Play messages among various parts of the operating system.
2. Coordinate automatic responses to Setup programs.
This includes checking whether a Setup program has improperly overwritten Windows
95 files, and optionally
restoring the Windows 95 versions of those files.
3. Display the initial logon dialog box if networking is enabled.
4. Play the system startup and shutdown sounds.
5. Load installable Windows drivers at startup and unload them at shutdown.
6. Run the shell program (usually Explorer.exe) and re-run the shell if it fails to respond.
DLL Show - MSGSRV32.EXE Module Dependency List
ADVAPI32.DLL     c:\windows\system\
GDI32.DLL           c:\windows\system\
KERNEL32.DLL   c:\windows\system\
MPR.DLL             c:\windows\system\
USER32.DLL       c:\windows\system\

I always recommend that if conventional fixes don't work to extract these dependent files
from your Windows CD-ROM

Because MPREXE.EXE errors are often connected with MSGSRV32.EXE errors I've
provided a list of MPREXE.EXE dependent files.
MPREXE.EXE is the Win32 Network Interface Service Processor
DLL Show - MPREXE.EXE Module Dependency List
ADVAPI32.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
GDI32.DLL                        c:\windows\system\
KERNEL32.DLL                 c:\windows\system\
MPR.DLL                          c:\windows\system\
MPREXE.EXE                    c:\windows\system\
MPRSERV.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
MSPWL32.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
RNANP.DLL                      c:\windows\system\
USER32.DLL                     c:\windows\system\

I always recommend that if conventional fixes don't work to extract these dependent files
from your Windows CD-ROM


Many people are experiencing problems which they can trace back to Msgsrv32. But
Msgsrv32 is not the cause. Some info on Msgsrv32:

Msgsrv32.exe is a program (Windows 32-bit message server) that performs several
background functions necessary for Windows operation.

These functions include:

Load installable Windows drivers at startup and unload them at shutdown.

Run the shell program (usually Explorer.exe) and re-run the shell if it fails to respond.

Mediate Plug and Play messages among various parts of the operating system.

Coordinate automatic responses to Setup programs. This includes checking whether a
Setup program has improperly overwritten Windows files, and optionally restoring the
Windows versions of those files.

Display the initial logon dialog box if networking is enabled.

Play the system startup and shutdown sounds.

Usually these messages appear on shutdown. Here are some more common errors and their
causes:

MSGSRV32.DLL caused a General Protection Fault in Module CM8330SB.DRV

You need to visit the C-Media site and upgrade your drivers

See: Microsoft Knowledge Base Article Q188803

Msgsrv32 not responding

See: Microsoft Knowledge Base Article Q169987


Msgsrv32 Not Responding When Computer Hangs While Idle
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q169/9/87.asp

Mprexe Caused an Invalid Page Fault in Module Kernel...
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q187/9/65.asp

Explorer Caused an Invalid Page Fault in Kernel32.dll
Any of the following Errors may appear:
Explorer caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Commgr32 caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Mprexe caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Msgsrv32 caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
A TCP/IP problem has occurred. Please check if you have TCP/IP installed and selected
for your modem.
Msnviewr caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
After you receive the error message, your computer may stop responding.
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/Q154/0/92.asp

Fatal Exception in Msgsrv32.exe When You Quit Windows 95
This occurs if the Graphics Display Interface (GDI) handle table has become damaged.
To work around this issue, remove the Microsoft Find Fast shortcut from the StartUp
folder. To do so, use the following steps:
1st, backup your registry
1. Right-click the desktop, click New, and then click Folder.
2. Type "Disabled StartUp shortcuts" (without quotation marks), and then press ENTER.
3. Click Start, point to Find, and then click Files Or Folders.
4. In the Named box, type "startup" (without quotation marks), and then click the
Advanced tab.
5. In the Of Type box, click Folder, and then click Find Now.
6. Double-click the StartUp folder (after you verify it is in the Windows\Start
Menu\Programs folder), right click the Microsoft Find
Fast shortcut, and then click Cut.
7. Quit the Find Files Or Folders tool, right-click the Disabled StartUp Shortcuts folder, and
then click Paste.
8. Restart your computer.

Regards, Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
0
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:scdavis
ID: 1645910
I'm still working with the machine; comments from smeebud and cmcgee have pointed me down a couple of paths that could come to a resolution.

I've read about the SFC util somewhere in my travels - it's wonderful.  What a great thing.  I found that I did have an application that had replaced a dozen dlls and other misc files, though none of them were in the list mentioned by smeebud and I still have the same behaviour.  

Further, I'll add more detail to the question - it isn't netscape specifically that crashes - running wordpad will produce the crash with the same regularity as netscape.  

I've increased the points, as this one is getting quite hairy - and I've had some useful tips from a couple of you.  If we can resolve this little beast, I'll split'em up if that's possible..
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Author Comment

by:scdavis
ID: 1645911
Ok, here's the update:

Netscape, WordPad and others seem to cause the system to crash.  I've introduced an eval copy of McAfee to insure there were no virii involved (had some problems with FTPs being mysteriously aborted at 1am, EST, today).  Mcafee had the wonderful effect of 'catching' the crash somehow itself - Mcafee would go non-responsive and the system would not report the msgsrv32 error.  Really erratic behaviour after that, so I've disabled McAfee permanently, after getting a whole scan through.

I'm now in the process of flogging through device drivers.  Troubleshooting '95 real-mode drivers kb article #q156126 will be my next step, after a few floggings of other suspected drivers (wierdo mouse driver installed by user recently..?).  Going to kill the sound system and Ethernet NIC also.

Since I've eliminated my concerns about dlls, I'm off into device drivers.  (yuck)  

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LVL 7

Author Comment

by:scdavis
ID: 1645912
Funky.  I've figured it out.  It was a printer driver, from what version of windows, I don't know.  I suspect that some applications were intializing some porting of the print spooler on execution and bombing out then.  I've since deleted the offending driver, and all seems well.  

That's quite a treat.  20 hours of flogging later, problem solved.

Thanks to all of your for taking the time to suggest probbable causes and saving me the time of poking though microsoft's kb (uggh, do I ever hate that).

I guess, that smeebud's answer was as close to the truth, as he had a description about what that sucker does in addition to some very handy dlls to check.  Write'r on up and let's close this sucker.

Thanks!
Scott Davis,
Beanfield Technologies.
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LVL 14

Accepted Solution

by:
smeebud earned 300 total points
ID: 1645913
See my "Error Messages With "Msgsrv32" at http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
=================================
Glad you up and running.
 here ya go.


1st, an introduction to "Msgsrv32""
Function of the Windows 95 32-Bit Message Server

Msgsrv32.exe is a program that runs invisibly on the Windows 95 desktop and performs
several background functions necessary for Windows 95 operation. These functions
include:
1. Mediate Plug and Play messages among various parts of the operating system.
2. Coordinate automatic responses to Setup programs.
This includes checking whether a Setup program has improperly overwritten Windows
95 files, and optionally
restoring the Windows 95 versions of those files.
3. Display the initial logon dialog box if networking is enabled.
4. Play the system startup and shutdown sounds.
5. Load installable Windows drivers at startup and unload them at shutdown.
6. Run the shell program (usually Explorer.exe) and re-run the shell if it fails to respond.
DLL Show - MSGSRV32.EXE Module Dependency List
ADVAPI32.DLL     c:\windows\system\
GDI32.DLL           c:\windows\system\
KERNEL32.DLL   c:\windows\system\
MPR.DLL             c:\windows\system\
USER32.DLL       c:\windows\system\

I always recommend that if conventional fixes don't work to extract these dependent files
from your Windows CD-ROM

Because MPREXE.EXE errors are often connected with MSGSRV32.EXE errors I've
provided a list of MPREXE.EXE dependent files.
MPREXE.EXE is the Win32 Network Interface Service Processor
DLL Show - MPREXE.EXE Module Dependency List
ADVAPI32.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
GDI32.DLL                        c:\windows\system\
KERNEL32.DLL                 c:\windows\system\
MPR.DLL                          c:\windows\system\
MPREXE.EXE                    c:\windows\system\
MPRSERV.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
MSPWL32.DLL                  c:\windows\system\
RNANP.DLL                      c:\windows\system\
USER32.DLL                     c:\windows\system\

I always recommend that if conventional fixes don't work to extract these dependent files
from your Windows CD-ROM


Many people are experiencing problems which they can trace back to Msgsrv32. But
Msgsrv32 is not the cause. Some info on Msgsrv32:

Msgsrv32.exe is a program (Windows 32-bit message server) that performs several
background functions necessary for Windows operation.

These functions include:

Load installable Windows drivers at startup and unload them at shutdown.

Run the shell program (usually Explorer.exe) and re-run the shell if it fails to respond.

Mediate Plug and Play messages among various parts of the operating system.

Coordinate automatic responses to Setup programs. This includes checking whether a
Setup program has improperly overwritten Windows files, and optionally restoring the
Windows versions of those files.

Display the initial logon dialog box if networking is enabled.

Play the system startup and shutdown sounds.

Usually these messages appear on shutdown. Here are some more common errors and their
causes:

MSGSRV32.DLL caused a General Protection Fault in Module CM8330SB.DRV

You need to visit the C-Media site and upgrade your drivers

See: Microsoft Knowledge Base Article Q188803

Msgsrv32 not responding

See: Microsoft Knowledge Base Article Q169987


Msgsrv32 Not Responding When Computer Hangs While Idle
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q169/9/87.asp

Mprexe Caused an Invalid Page Fault in Module Kernel...
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q187/9/65.asp

Explorer Caused an Invalid Page Fault in Kernel32.dll
Any of the following Errors may appear:
Explorer caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Commgr32 caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Mprexe caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
Msgsrv32 caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
A TCP/IP problem has occurred. Please check if you have TCP/IP installed and selected
for your modem.
Msnviewr caused an invalid page fault in module Kernel32.dll.
After you receive the error message, your computer may stop responding.
http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/Q154/0/92.asp

Fatal Exception in Msgsrv32.exe When You Quit Windows 95
This occurs if the Graphics Display Interface (GDI) handle table has become damaged.
To work around this issue, remove the Microsoft Find Fast shortcut from the StartUp
folder. To do so, use the following steps:
1st, backup your registry
1. Right-click the desktop, click New, and then click Folder.
2. Type "Disabled StartUp shortcuts" (without quotation marks), and then press ENTER.
3. Click Start, point to Find, and then click Files Or Folders.
4. In the Named box, type "startup" (without quotation marks), and then click the
Advanced tab.
5. In the Of Type box, click Folder, and then click Find Now.
6. Double-click the StartUp folder (after you verify it is in the Windows\Start
Menu\Programs folder), right click the Microsoft Find
Fast shortcut, and then click Cut.
7. Quit the Find Files Or Folders tool, right-click the Disabled StartUp Shortcuts folder, and
then click Paste.
8. Restart your computer.

Regards, Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/

BTW, good work you did.

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Expert Comment

by:smeebud
ID: 1645914
Scott, can you tell me how you isolated the offending driver??
for my page.

Regards, Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
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LVL 14

Expert Comment

by:smeebud
ID: 1645915
Scott, can you tell me how you isolated the offending driver??
for my page.

Regards, Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
0
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:scdavis
ID: 1645916
Bud,

I had been using primarily netscape, then wordpad to test the system.  They both 'froze' regularly.  After I had finished ruling out the pieces of hardware and drivers that I assumed were the most likely to cause the headache - I still had the same problem.  I then noticed that some of the programs I did not have the problem with were 16 bit - I couldn't see the corrolation, so I started (re)reading the MS kb articles.  Most of them pertained to MS Word - where, undoubtably, much more development (and field testing!) effort has been put.  With this in mind, I fired up word..

I got lucky.  I started Word and it gave me a kernel protection error (maybe? -- some error, anyhow) from a specific driver (the printer driver).  The driver was named esselte.drv, which is the name of our customer that the laptop belongs to.  Esselte produces bar coding printers, scanners, etc..  I've seen their techs install 50+ printer drivers before.   ('95 sure does NOT like that)  Anyhow, As soon as I saw the name of the driver, the little light bulb above my head got a little brighter. <grin>

So, I trashed the offending printer defination and presto - the strange freeze symptoms went away.  I just got back from returning the laptop to its owner.  Turns out the techs there are aware of this problem already - the offending printer driver is so heavily customized, or just not to spec, that if you make it the default printer (ACK!) you can see 'all kinds of wierd things happen' in the words of the head of their service dep't.  

I imagine in this case, the printer driver didn't return some result, or sent some result that was in the wrong format to the OS or whatever.  <sigh>  

Just another day in the Microsoft Jungle.  (where do I want to go --??!  the F! outta here!)

My thanks for your explanation of what the MSGSRV32 process does.  It'll undoubtably come in handy some time in the next couple of years.  <grin>  I've been tackling problems with msgsrv in 95 for three years, regularly without any success.  (ie, just re-install it!)  

I suppose that the 32bit apps that I was using either polled the print spooler (or whatever) to find out what they were dealing with - and at that point, hit the driver and went directly to siberia.  It's a shame that MS hasn't had the gumption to make error-handling around this process (msgsrv32) a little more reliable and easier for us 'field grunts' to diagnose.  I'm just happy that I had a full 48 hours to experiment with the machine, rather than having to wipe it.  What a great thing I've learned.

Again,

Thanks (x1000) to you - if you ever want to pass any of your diagnostic problems past me, just drop me an email.

Cheers,
Scott.
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Expert Comment

by:smeebud
ID: 1645917
Well, I might just do that.
How about writing me from my site and I'll have your address.

You had the tenacity to keep after that problem. As I said I wanted to know for my troubleshooting site
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/

Are you saying that rogue 16bit drivers would be something to look for if others had the same problem??

Regards, Bud
http://www.geocities.com/~budallen/
0
 
LVL 7

Author Comment

by:scdavis
ID: 1645918
16 bit drivers?  Not specifically -- just any driver that does not conform to whatever specs are for windows.  This particular one must have had some interaction with the OS when I started these applications (word, netscape, wordpad..).

The only thing I've really learned from this is to check your drivers - cut out whatever you don't need en mass, then see which ones you can re-introduce.  

My particular 'freeze' differed from most of the other examples mentioned, ie, the sound card problem.  It wasn't a startup or shutdown issue.  It seemed to affect several applications and not 16 bit apps.  I suspect the 32bit apps just invoked the print settings for some reason that is unknown to me..  then voila, the driver went bye-bye.  

I've never encountered (or realized I had..) a faulty printer driver before.  That's probbably why this customer has seen so many of their machines re-installed..  (maybe those acer laptops don't suck as much as I thought.. <grin>)

I'm going to back-track up through my customer's IT departments, to find out why they've produced such a demented driver, and why they allow it to be freely distributed without any adequate warnings.  <sigh>

Cheers,
Scott
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