XP Service Pack 3 Upgrade - No Incoming Network After Install and Constant Rebooting

Hello All,

I have a strange problem with XPSP3. I've found various inconsistencies that are more than a little frustrating.

Many of my system, that I upgrade perpetually reboot after the install. After a little research I found that without exception, (for me anyway) it's the usbport.sys file that causes this. If you grab the old one from the "service Pack uninstall" folder and copy it to the c:\windows\system32\drivers folder all is good again. Forgive me for expecting too much, but... this has been a problem since day one and Microsoft still hasn't remedy it!?? This is no small issue, I get about a 30 percent failure rate with this little jewel. What I've found for help on Microsoft's site is to unplug USB devices. That just makes me want to slam my head against my desk. A good portion of my systems and most all that are being produced today don't have PS2 ports, so this is not an option.

So I wrote a script to try and get around this:

start " " /b /wait "\\server\XP_Service Packs\XP-SP3.EXE" /passive /norestart"
rename c:\windows\system32\drivers\usbport.sys usbport.sp3
copy /y /v "\\server\it$\Scripts\XPServicePack3\usbport.sys" "c:\windows\system32\drivers\"
shutdown /f /r /t 00

There's quite a lot more but this is the bit that matters. I can find no other way to remedy this problem, and that is absolutely crazy considering that this does not appear to be obscure in the least.

Does anybody have a better solution? If not, then the other problem I've encountered is that if you delete anything out of "c:\windows\system32\drivers" it will automatically be recreated by windows. Now this hasn't been a real huge problem but it could be, and I suspect that it's probably the reason why one of my machines in the test run ended up with a usbport.sys file with a size of 0.

Next issue, After a successful install of SP3, I've noticed that when the system comes back up, I as an Admin can not connect to it. I can ping it, and from the users perspective they can browse and access the network fine, but it will not let anything connect to it from the outside. I can't hit any shares, including the c$ or connect to it in anyway other than ping it. If I reboot them they work fine, sometimes it takes a couple reboots but that always fixes it. Does anybody have a solution to this one? I've made sure Computer Browser is running and that the firewall hasn't been activated none of this is the problem.

As always, thanks for the help
Eric
bwaskAsked:
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Ravi AgrawalCommented:
It has been almost 2 years since SP3 has been released. Personally, I have never had / seen any issues as being reported by you.

I think you need to get updated drivers for your motherboard from the manufacturer's website and install them. Most probably the problems should sort themselves out.

Moreover have you tried sfc /scannow Type the Bold text in the Run dialog box and let windows replace any corrupt system files that you may be having. You will need your windows CD in hand just in case the utility asks for it.

Ravi.
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bwaskAuthor Commented:
Thanks grtraders,

These systems have updated drivers. Not sure how you missed this being an issue. It's all over Microsoft's site with basically the same fix as I stated above. Which isn't really a fix. This is a much larger problem on the newer systems I have than the older ones.

Being in the I.T. industry I know many people around town in my field. They have seen this issue since day one and are also just having to deal with it. Not to mention it's all over the Internet with, again, basically this same fix. On a side note, my brother called me a couple of weeks ago because his system was rebooting after applying SP3, he has about a 1 year old Alienware system and his drivers are most definitely up to date. Drivers do not appear to be the issue (other than Microsoft's usbport.sys file that is).

Moreover, I highly doubt that out of the 10 system, (6 different models, and 6 different loads)  they all would have exactly the same corrupt files, to cause exactly the same exact issue. However, I'm running System File Checker on one of my problem system anyway.
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bwaskAuthor Commented:
System File Checker didn't do anything. No problem there.
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Ravi AgrawalCommented:
Bios upgrades !! did you check for them?

I know Bios won't be the issue here but I guess, something was erronously fixed at a hardware level in the Bios (leaving an error) which was then later again fixed in SP3. Maybe your machine is somewhere in between.

Anyways as a workaround, delete the usbport.sys from the c:\windows\system32\dllcache folder and then replace your file with the SP2 version. Windows won't be able to find the file and will not be able to replace it,

Ravi.
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bwaskAuthor Commented:
Got any ideas on my last paragraph?
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Ravi AgrawalCommented:
Sorry about that, re-read your Question.

No ideas about ur last para ... "Next issue, After a successful install of SP3, I've noticed that when the system comes back up....... I've made sure Computer Browser is running and that the firewall hasn't been activated none of this is the problem."

Forigve me but I think something is really screwing up the sytems harshly.

Are you confident about the file genuinity of the SP3 file / CD . I would check the MD5sum to be sure. How about going through the known issues of SP3 installs at the microsoft website and see if there is a workaround.

The install is not going on smoothly and in my opinion network connectivity should not fail as reported by you,

Regarding the reboots, you can try this to avoid them --

Control Panel >> system >> advanced tab >> settings button under Startup and recovery >> uncheck "automatic restart" under system failure,

Ravi.
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Ravi AgrawalCommented:
Regarding the shares, do a disk check & maybe it would correct any permissions going haywire. Create new accounts and see if they also fail. Could be some issue with the user profiles.

Ravi.
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bwaskAuthor Commented:
Well I figured out what the problem is, even if I don't know why or how.

I have a group policy that disables my firewalls internally on all my workstations. Now, if you go into services and look at the firewall, it will show disable and it is stopped. Now since I have a group policy it won't let me start it. So, I decided to kill the group policy and then do a gpupdate /force on the workstation. Next I went in and set the service to manual and started it. Then I turned it off. All of the sudden I can hit the machine again.

I'm now quite sure the Firewall is running on my workstation even though I have a group policy that tells it not to, and despite the fact that from the view in Services it says otherwise.

Very strange. Does anybody have an idea what this all about? I could really use some help here.

Thanks
Eric
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Ravi AgrawalCommented:
Is it the windows firewall we are talking about or something else. If something else, maybe the firewall is just not obeying the Group Policy rules.

Ravi.
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bwaskAuthor Commented:
No Grtraders, I don't have any other Firewalls.

OK, I figured it out. I have always used a group policy to stop the firewall service from running under:
Computer Configuration > Security Settings > System Services > Windows Firewall/Internet connections Sharing [ICS]
And defining it as disabled.

However, it turns out that there is a better way. Instead I went here:
Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > Network > Network Connections > Windows Firewall > Standard Profile > Windows Firewall: Protect all network connections >  And disabling it, then did the same thing in the Domain Profile.

All is Golden now.

My usbport.sys problem worries me though. Copying this file is just not a good solution and I'm very frustrated that Microsoft has no better fix for this than to copy the old USB driver into the drivers folder. I'm very concerned as to what effects this going to have for me down the line when Microsoft suddenly tries to do something and can't because I'm running a Service Pack 2 driver. Not only that but I'd like to slipstream my loads so I don't have to wait the 2.5 to 3hours it takes to install SP3 (which is crazy by itself) but that's probably a really bad idea with this unresolved problem. However out of the 30 or so system I've ran it on I haven't had a single problem thanks to my little script. But WTH? Before that I was getting about a 30% failure rate and having systems come up rebooting constantly.

Eric
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