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Why can't I install the "microsoft update" activex?

I have been using "Windows Update" for a long time to update OS files.  Now I want to use "Microsoft Update" which updates OS files and MS Office files.

When I click "Go" to install "Microsoft Update", here is what happens:

The information bar displays "This website wants to install the following add-on:  'Microsfot Update' from 'Microsoft Corporation'.  . . . If you trust the website and the add-on and want to install it, click here . . .

When I click on "click here", nothing happens.  I wait, and wait, and wait.  Then End Task on iexplorer.exe.

Note:  Nor am I able to install the Adobe Flash Player.

I have gone to:  

Internet Options \ Security \ Custom \ "Enabled" Run Active X Controls and Plug-ins,
but the activex still does not install.

Your help is greatly appreciated.
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1 Solution
 
John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
See if you can uninstall Flash and Flash plug-in if it is there. Assuming you can uninstall Flash, restart, install Flash again and then try Microsoft Update. It works fine on a properly operating XP machine. .... Thinkpads_User
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John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Here is a link to force uninstall Flash, should you need to do that.

http://helpx.adobe.com/flash-player/kb/uninstall-flash-player-windows.html

.... Thinkpads_User
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
I was able to uninstall flash, but I am not able to "re-install" flash, nor the activex for "microsoft update".
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John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Next step on an XP machine will be to start up as Administrator, open a command prompt and run System File Checker:  SFC /SCANNOW. Allow to complete, restart and try again.

... Thinkpads_User
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jcimarronCommented:
LessonsLearned--Have you chosen to receive Microsoft Updates in the Windows Update|Change Settings window?
See item 7 here
http://www.sevenforums.com/tutorials/2797-windows-update-settings-change.html
There should be something similar in Win XP.

Another way to enable Microsoft Updates
http://blogs.technet.com/b/mu/archive/2009/03/20/enabling-microsoft-update-to-keep-office-2003-office-xp-and-other-microsoft-products-secure-and-up-to-date.aspx

Concerning problems uninstalling Flash, use the official uninstaller
http://helpx.adobe.com/flash-player/kb/uninstall-flash-player-windows.html
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
I ran the SCF /scannow command.  It did it's thing. Restarted the computer.  The problem still exists:  I cannot install the "Microsoft Update" activex.  The IE screen actually freezes, and does not allow me to click on the "Click here . . ."

I also cannot install flash player for mozilla firefox.
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John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
You should probably now scan for viruses and malware. Get Malwarebytes and scan with that. You could have malware which is causing this.

Update should work, so you may have to consider re-installing XP to get Microsoft Update to work for you.

.... Thinkpads_User
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
I reinstalled Windows XP, Service Pack 3.  It did not fix anything.  

I will now try the malwarebytes thing.
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
Malwarebytes did not find anything.
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John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Another thing to try is to uninstall Service Pack  3, then download and re-install Service Pack 2 (which re-writes XP), check to see if Microsoft Update and Flash works. Then download and install SP3.


.... Thinkpads_User
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jcimarronCommented:
LessonsLearned--There may be too much emphasis on the suspected missing Active X control and not enough on methods to get Microsoft Updates working.  What is the site from which you initial tried to install Microsoft Updates?

Having said that, the simplest solution, since you have tried so many and none have worked, may be a Repair Install.  It should not affect your personal data, but it is always safest to make a back up first.
http://www.dougknox.com/xp/tips/xp_repair_install.htm
More detail
http://www.michaelstevenstech.com/XPrepairinstall.htm

You will need a Win XP installation CD of the same version that you now have installed--including SP.
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
The problem has been solved (sort of).
1) I logged on as a new user
2) I started an office program for the first time, like Microsoft Excel.  Immediately, a window popped up asking if I wanted to receive "Automatic Updates" just like jcimarron mentioned in "LessonsLearned--Have you chosen to receive Microsoft Updates in the Windows Update|Change Settings window?"
3) I clicked the radio button to select automatic updates.
4) A window in Internet Explorer opened up automatically, and asked if I wanted to install the activex.  I WAS able to click on the "Click here to install activex ..." and the activex was installed successfully.
5) I was able to choose express or custom.
6) Problem solved.  However, I noticed the words "Microsoft Update" do not appear as one of the choices in the program list, BUT, when I click "Windows Update", it automatically opens up to "Microsoft Update".

Thanks for all your help!
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LessonsLearnedAuthor Commented:
By the way, I also was able to install Adobe Flash and Adobe Shockwave successfully.
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jcimarronCommented:
LessonsLearned--Glad to hear the good news.  You are welcome.
"I noticed the words "Microsoft Update" do not appear as one of the choices in the program list"  
That is the way Windows handles it.  On your Windows Update window you should now see Microsoft Updates mentioned in the "You receive updates:" line
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