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SBS2003 graphics corruption

Posted on 2006-04-27
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Last Modified: 2012-06-27
Hi,
I had a small problem with windows explorer in SBS2k3 which is now turning into quite a large problem.

I performed a windows update a while ago, and let the server restart itself, went away and left it. The server came back up ok. A few days later i noticed the graphics in windows explorer had become corrupted.

All dialog boxes are affected by the corruption.

I've tried changeing the fonts, the colours, even the sizes, nothing makes a difference. The links below are 2 screenshots which will explain a bit better.
Basically, changing security settins is impossible because i can't see any of the tick boxes, and selecting radio buttons is equally as impoisible.....

Have a look at the screenshots...

http://www.2mnetworks.com/images/server1.jpg
http://www.2mnetworks.com/images/server2.jpg


Anybody got any ideas?

Cheers
Paul
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Question by:beplas
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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16557703
Stupid question but have you tried reinstalling your graphics card drivers?
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by:ChadHooper
ID: 16558592
I've had all sorts of problems with Graphics driver updates through Windows Updates in the past (even last week, this screwed up three machines at a client's site through Automatic Updates.

Firstly I would recommend confirming it is a problem with the Graphics driver. The easiest way to do this would be to establish a Remote Desktop connection to your server from another machine. If things look OK, then it is probably your Graphics driver. If not, then the problem may run deeper.

If your graphics driver is at fault, you could try rolling back the driver. Failing that, I would recommend installing a cheap card from a different manufacturer and use that one instead.
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Author Comment

by:beplas
ID: 16560307
Hi,
Yes, i've re-installed the latest graphics driver. This didn't cure the problem, but it did change it slightly - nothing major, just the corruption looed different ;-)

A remote connection looks exactly the same.

I'll try a different video card later on, unfortunately it's a production server so it looks like a late night for me!
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by:ChadHooper
ID: 16560527
It's unlikely to be a graphics card problem if it looks the same from a remote desktop connection - RDP utilises the local computers graphics driver, and as far as I'm aware doesn't touch the graphics driver of the computer you're connected to. I suspect it may be a corrupt system file - not really a solution, but you could try reinstalling the latest service pack in the hope that it may replace any corrupt files. Worth trying another graphics card anyway though.
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by:beplas
ID: 16562180
I've just tried removing and re-applying server2k3 sp1 (remotely - i'm either brave or stupid!), made no difference. Any further suggestions?

I tried changing the fonts and colours again so that maybe i could at least read some of the dialog boxes, but all the colours are the same! Grrrr.....
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by:ChadHooper
ID: 16562290
How about trying the system file checker (sfc) to see if any system files are corrupt. From a command prompt or run box, type 'sfc /scannow'.
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by:beplas
ID: 16562457
just tried that, but it won't let me do it remotely, says i need to be an administrator running a console session. Well, i am an administrator, but i geuss an rdp session is not a console session!

I'll have to try that one a bit later when i can get physical access to the box
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by:ChadHooper
ID: 16562480
You can establish a console session remotely to a 2003 server. Just use the command 'mstsc /v:yourcomputername /console'
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by:beplas
ID: 16564983
Just got access to the box, tried the sfc. It replaced a few files, gave it a reboot, and still no change.

This is starting to drive me crazy now!
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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16565002
back everything up and reinstall? :-D
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by:ChadHooper
ID: 16565280
How does the login screen look when you start up? Have you tried logging in as a different user? Could this be as simple as a corrupt theme (Display Properties->Themes tab)? Unfortunately, I think Windows 2003 only comes with the Windows classic theme, so you can't easily switch over, but it might be worth trying to download a real simple one to see if that helps, or transferring one from a Windows XP machine.
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by:beplas
ID: 16565900
Umfortunately this is a live server running about 30 websites and exchange with about 300 mailboxes - a re-install is a last, very last, furthest from my mind option ;-))

Funilly enough i started thinking along the same lines with the theme. Yes, the login dialog boxes suffer from the same effect.

I installed a trial of style xp, obviously it wont work on 2k3 but it did install some themes, including the xp theme. This has improved the look of most windows and dialog boxes. Although the fonts withim system boxes (network properties etc) are still too big, and radio buttons are still corrupt.

I'm currently removing 2k3 sp1 again to see what happens.
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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16565947
stupid questona gain:  hope you're backing up your stuff when you are removing/reinstalling sp1
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16566937
This has happened to a number of people.  Remove KB896424 and you'll be cured.

I don't know if they've come up with a replacement for Server 2003 for this patch yet, but it apparently caused problems only with Server 2003, not XP.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16571887
Further update on this, I've read that either reapplying Service Pack 1 or doing an in-place upgrade of the OS will fix this as well, without having to uninstall KB896424.  Seems as though this error happens on older builds of Windows Server 2003... what media did you originally install the server with?

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:beplas
ID: 16584839
Hi,
Removing SP1 seemed to cure the problem. Later on tonight i'll try re-installing SP1, see if the problem re-occurs. If it ioes, i'll remove KB896424 and see if that cures it.

Doing a re-install of SP1 didn't make any difference. I installed SBS2k3 from CD. It was one of the early releases which had a problem with the Sharepoint installation. Suprisingly enough, Microsoft admitted this was a BIG problem and gave me 5 user licenses as compensation! Sweet!

I'll let you know how i get on.

Cheers
Paul
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Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy earned 2000 total points
ID: 16589007
Wait a minute, you can't remove SBS SP1... so is this just Server 2003 SP1??? I just saw that you mentioned above that you did this.

SBS SP1 consists of a 6 step upgrade, which is described in detail here:  http://sbsurl.com/sp1

If you've uninstalled Server 2003 SP1 and reinstalled it... then you absolutely need to reapply SBS SP1 as well.  

Jeff
TechSoEasy

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Author Comment

by:beplas
ID: 16594827
Maybe thats the problem, server 2003 sp1 has been installed on SBS2003
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16595353
Server 2003 SP1 is part of the complete process of applying SBS SP1, but  you need to finish the job by installing the other items (some of which may already be installed due to any previous updating you've done).

• Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1
 
• Windows SharePoint Services 2.0 Service Pack 1
 
• Exchange Server 2003 Service Pack 1
 
• Windows Small Business Server 2003 Service Pack 1 Component
 
• Windows XP Service Pack 2 for Client Deployment
 
• Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 Service Pack 1 for Client Deployment
 
You'll find detailed instructions about this Service Pack at http://sbsurl.com/sp1, as well as within Microsoft's SBS SP1 Readme:  http://download.microsoft.com/download/d/5/b/d5be2c2c-b1cb-47f8-9235-8cf89820139e/Readme_std.htm

Jeff
TechSoEasy

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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16801780
Points should be split up between me and TechSoEasy.  My initial suggestion was attempted and the results were used for further troubleshooting.

Michael
myfootsmells
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16806370
Micahel... I'd normally be happy to share with you... but you recommended uninstalling and reinstalling SP1 which is not possible.  You CAN uninstall Windows Server SP1, but not SBS SP1.  However, it CAN be reinstalled as many times as you like.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16808680
http://www.windowsitpro.com/Article/ArticleID/46229/46229.html

He can if he installed the Windows Server 2003 version of SP1, just like you guys had mentioned about 4 posts after I suggested him to.  

Michael
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16820298
Michael... the actual problem was that he ONLY installed Server 2003 SP1 without the rest of the required updates for SBS, including SBS SP1.  

Installing just Windows Server 2003 SP1 will break a number of things.

Details are at http://sbsurl.com/sp1

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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by:myfootsmells
ID: 16820366
but he didnt say that in his original post.  only asking several questions did we come to that conclusion.  i posted my suggestions before we even figured that much out.

michael
myfootsmells
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by:Jeffrey Kane - TechSoEasy
ID: 16820557
The posted question is quite often not the actual problem... which is why this place is an "exchange" of information.  Many times, it takes a back and forth conversation to determine the real problem or issue... and only then can an appropriate answer be provided.  But actually the ENTIRE conversation that occured before I got involved in the question did not acknowledge that you CAN'T uninstall and reinstall SBS SP1.  In fact it didn't even mention SBS SP1, and that was a problem!

If he had originally installed SBS SP1 correctly, the uninstalling and reinstalling Server 2003 SP1 would also require a reapplication of SBS SP1.  Thus, even if your answer was partially right, not advising to reapply SBS SP1 afterwards would be fataly wrong for the server.

Jeff
TechSoEasy
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