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Windows XP executable file will not run

Posted on 2014-08-22
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Last Modified: 2014-09-12
I have a used machine that I sold and have shipped out.  This machine is controlled by a computer and it has a very simple executable file that is used for the user to control the machine.  The software is so simple that the .EXE file is simply copied to a folder and executed.  The program does not require to be "installed".

The buy tells me that when he tries to execute the program by double clicking on the file, or the shortcut on the desktop, it returns a "...encounter and error problem and needs to close" error and closes.  (See attached screen shots.)

(Please note that the program ran perfectly at my facility the day I decommissioned the machine.)

Here is the kicker, they are able to successfully execute the program if they open a Command Prompt window, change to the folder holding the exe file and execute the file from the dos prompt.  Any ideas?
error-code.JPG
error-code-1.JPG
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Question by:shrimpfork
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22 Comments
 
LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279180
Have you tried running the file in compatibility mode? You can also make a custom shortcut using CMD to just launch it from CMD all the time, but that would be a workaround not a fix :)
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279324
Sorry I forgot to mention in the text that this computer is Windows XP.  There is no compatibility option.
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279411
Would creating a shortcut that points DOS to the exe be an acceptable solution?
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279412
No, because it did work just fine before I packaged up the machine and sent it.  I would like to find the cause of the problem as this computer controls a CNC machine and I want to make sure there is not a bigger problem at hand.
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279419
Understandable... would it be possible for you to upload your exe so we can try to reproduce your error?
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279425
If possible, it would be even better if you could package up the machine in question in a VM and provide a link for us, that way we can reproduce the exact same environment easily
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279431
I doubt it will work.  I needs to see the machine controller cards otherwise you will get a driver error.
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279437
I am in no longer in direct contact with the machine.  I am trying to help the buyer, who purchased the machine from me.  They currently do not have the machine connected to any type of network for internet access.
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279456
Would the error be the same as the error produced by your buyer? That is, if I use your .exe file I understand it will generate an error because there is no machine present, but will that error also be "...encounter and error problem and needs to close"? If not then it would be beneficial for you to upload the exe... That way if I get a driver error within XP the error is most likely to do with your buyers configuration... however if I also get the same error as him we can narrow down the problem to either your exe or a platform issue....
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Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 40279516
I would try to get the machine back so you can trouble shoot it.  Do you have a spare you can send to them?
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279538
No the error is different.  When I try to execute the same file here on my machine, I get the driver can not be found error.  This is not the same as the window error.

@ Dave:  I can not get the machine back here....it took a 40' semi truck to deliver.
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Expert Comment

by:Dave Baldwin
ID: 40279560
I meant the XP machine.  Or get your boss to pay for a field trip...
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279633
@shrimpfork
Perfect, if the error produced is different, like I said upload the .exe and we can perform some troubleshooting from our side
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279690
It will not let me upload the files here as there are a couple dll files that need to be in the same folder to execute.  I'm not sure what you are planning on doing with the exe file as the error that I am trying to address is NOT the driver error, but the windows error that I attached in the description.
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279712
@shrimpfork

I tried explaining above, but maybe I wasn't being clear, let me try to clarify :)

You say the client (buyer) is running into an error (not the driver error) when he launches the .exe

You say the .exe works completely fine in your environment

If the problem is with the .exe, if I try to run the .exe I will get the same error as your client
If the problem is with your clients environment, if I try to run the .exe I will get a driver error

This way we can narrow down what the problem is

Make sense?

To upload the files:
Bundle all .dlls and the .exe (basically grab the entire folder your executable file sits in) into a .zip, .7zip, or .rar (archived format)
Upload the entire archive here... you have up to 50 MB max per uploaded file
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279723
That is partly correct.  I was saying that the .exe ran (past tense) fine on the machine when the machine was here in our facility.  That machine and computer are no longer here, but sold to the buyer.  I have a backup copy of the .exe file and when I execute it on my workstation, it returns the device driver error, which is telling me that it would run fine if it was attached to the cnc machine.

I did try to create and upload the zip file.  When I was uploading it, it searched through the zip file and prevented me from uploading the zip file because of the dll files inside.
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279760
@shrimpfork

Three more questions:

1) on YOUR environment, were you ALSO running the .exe off of Windows XP?
2) on YOUR environment, were you running off of x64 or x86?
3) on your CLIENTS environment, is he running on x64 or x86?
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Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279776
rename your .dll files to .dll.txt, repackage, and reupload please.
I forgot most servers restrict .dll uploads because of the potential dangers they may carry
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Author Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40279818
The computer went with the CNC machine.  It was and still is windows XP.  Nothing has changed from it working in our facility to the new location of the clients facility.  The only thing different is that I removed the passwords and network setup for the computer so that it will not look for our network.

I had to add .txt to every file in the zip.  Even the exe file.
WinCNCFiles.zip
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LVL 6

Expert Comment

by:Sir Learnalot
ID: 40279830
Thanks, I'll build the VM and take a look at the program this weekend. Last question for ya before I do:
Are you aware if that machine was x64 or x86? (64-bit or 32-bit)
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Accepted Solution

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Sir Learnalot earned 2000 total points
ID: 40289232
OK. Sorry this took a few days as I could not find my XP VM... must have gotten buried somewhere in my files. I had to create a new one and get it updated and stuff, took me quite abit of time. Regardless, I tested out your program and it seems I get the same error as you. Therefore the problem IS NOT with your program :)

That is what I was trying to narrow down. Here is your last step; to have your client revert to an earlier backup if available and try to run your program then. If there is no backup available, instruct him to format and perform a clean installation of the OS. Once the computer is completely fresh, he has to repeatedly run Microsoft Update until the computer is fully updated. Then he can copy your program back on the computer and launch it again.

The logic is simple. I emulated having a clean and undamaged XP environment and ran your program. The result was the program ran correctly. The next step of having your client perform a fresh XP installation and running the program again, guarantees your client is running the program in a fresh and undamaged installation. If he still runs into the same error he did before it means the error only is produced when the machine is connected.

This means one of two things:
The machine is damaged... maybe during transportation
Your program has some local network variables that fail to run outside of your network, lack of error trapping results in the vague "...encounter and error problem and needs to close" error your client is seeing instead of displaying a helpful error message.

Your next step is to ask the client to reformat and try again.
Also it would not hurt to take another screenshot with the error details expanded.
As a side note, you can direct your client to setup a Remote Desktop session and you can take control to perform some troubleshooting yourself.
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Author Closing Comment

by:shrimpfork
ID: 40320034
It was hard to diagnose this one as I was being fed the information by a third party.  Apparently the client got it running.  Not sure exactly what he had to end up doing.  Thank you for you help with one guys.
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