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Windows Installer Cleanup utility shows 2 instances of 3.99.9999.00

Posted on 2008-10-22
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Working to clean up some issues on an XP Pro  laptop.  The Windows Installer Cleanup Utility shows two instances of [3.99.9999.00] - no other description.

Anyone have any ideas of what this is?
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Question by:Tomster2
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BillDL earned 500 total points
ID: 22780903
When you open Control Panel > Add/Remove Programs, is there an entry in the list of installed software named "3.99.9999.00" or "NO_NAME"?  Tick the "Show Updates" box at the top of Add/Remove Programs so that it shows all installed software.

You may be able to ascertain what this by opening Regedit  (Start Menu > Run > and type REGEDIT > click OK), and using the Edit menu > Find to search for 3.99.9999.00

In all probability you will find this in a sub-key under the registry key:

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall]

If you expand that key by clicking the + sign at its left, and then click on each of the sub-keys in turn going down the list in the left-hand pane, you will see values in the Right-hand pane.

Look across in the right-hand pane for any value named "3.99.9999.00".  When found, Export that Registry key to a file and you can then paste the contents here for us to see.  When Exporting, use Regedit's File Menu > Export option.  Leave it set at "Registration Entries (.reg)" and make sure that "Selected Branch" is chosen (these should be the default export settings).   Choose a folder to export to, and type in an appropriate file name.

Continue with your search and repeat the above for each instance found.  Close Regedit when done.

To upload the contents here, I suggest that you locate your exported *.reg files and do either of the following:
1. Right-Click > Rename to a *.TXT file instead of the *.REG file type it exported as
OR
2. Right-Click the *.reg file > Edit.  This opens in Notepad.  Edit > Select All > Edit > Copy.  Paste into a new "CODE SNIPPET" with your response.

DO NOT use the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility as a general Uninstaller tool.  It is only intended as a cleanup where the normal Add/Remove Programs routine leaves debris that causes problems such as failed reinstallations.

I have a feeling that "3.99.9999.00" may be a Windows Update that somehow hasn't been given a name.  Going back to what you saw in the right-hand pane of Regedit, the names that show in the Add/Remove Programs list of software are taken from the "DisplayName" value in each of the keys.  It could be that the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility reports some other value found in the key where "DisplayName" is not found.
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Expert Comment

by:BillDL
ID: 22893259
Thank you tomster2
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Author Comment

by:Tomster2
ID: 22894727
You are welcome.   You provided a detailed list of options to check that I was unaware of... which I really appreciated and will be helpful for the future as well.

I say "for the future" for since I posted we found several other odd things are going on with this machine that just didn't add up - so we are going to reinstall.
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