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SBS 2011 .Net Uninstall 4.5.1

Posted on 2014-09-30
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Last Modified: 2014-10-14
Back in July I ran into an issue with SBS 2011 where many normal Windows processes would launch but never fully execute: msiexec and other installers; Server Console (hang at "Collecting Data"); Exchange 2010 EMC (hang at "Loading Help Files); etc.

With the help of EE, I was able to narrow the issue down to .net F/W 4.5.1.

After many weeks of attempts, I was finally able to uninstall .net and re-install. The issue appeared to be resolved until 2 weeks ago after a .net Security Update was pushed to the server.

I attempted the same steps I had back in July only to completely meltdown the OS partition and had to recover from bare metal using a backup.

I recovered the OS to a time before the recent update broke .net, however I am experiencing the hanging of software again. I cannot install/ uninstall/ repair or do many other necessary functions because of this issue.

Please advise the proper procedure for uninstalling .net 4.5.1 and re-installing .net 4.0

IF YOU DO NOT HAVE EXPERIENCE SPECIFIC TO SBS 2011, PLEASE DO NOT PARTICIPATE. .NET IN OTHER WINDOWS INSTALLATIONS DOES NOT BEHAVE THE SAME AS SBS 2011.

NOTE: THERE ARE NO VIRUSES, ROOTKITS OR OTHER EXPLOITS. THOROUGH ON-AND-OFFLINE SCANS HAVE BEEN PERFORMED FROM: ESET NOD32; PANDA ONLINE SCANNER; BITDEFENDER RESCUE CD; MBAM AND AVG RESCUE CD
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Question by:NSBConsulting
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by:NSBConsulting
ID: 40353589
Update: Reduced the allocated memory used by Exchange per several posts/ blogs/ recommendations.

After restart, system appeared to be working as normal (able to run MMC and EMC which collected data as normal and populated windows), but 3 minutes after login, behavior is the same as before. Either a delayed service is starting which is halting normal processes (.NET 4.5.1 I'm looking at you) or some other un-noted process is stopping normal behavior.

Additional update: Built-in Domain Admin account is using a temporary profile copied from the original Built-in Domain Admin account at login. Once logged in, the account seems to be in a hybrid state where documents and settings are maintained in the original User folder structure and a link is created between the temporary profile and the original profile. Each login creates a new temporary folder for the account in USERS.

Next Step: Uninstall .NET 4.5.1 and re-install .NET 4.0 (the last known good .NET for SBS 2011).
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Expert Comment

by:ComputerTechie
ID: 40354526
I have used this on sbs 2011 and had good luck with no known issues

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/astebner/archive/2008/08/28/8904493.aspx
it a removal tool for .net

CT
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Author Comment

by:NSBConsulting
ID: 40361504
CT,

Thanks for the suggestion. I've been down that road and although the removal tool applies the necessary changes, re-installation of .NET is not possible due to whatever error is going on with .NET.

I opened a support case with MS and am currently on the phone with them. I will post my results, but the rep has told me that the product team is aware of .NET 4.5.1 compatibility issue with SBS 2011 and the rep recommends not installing 4.5.1 per future update recommendations (once he resolves the issue).

The few of us using SBS 2011 need to be really verbose about our issues and changes made to fix them because there's not a lot of specific data out there for SBS 2011 repairs.
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by:ComputerTechie
ID: 40362291
True I have several  sbs 2011 boxes and for these client hey work fine and do not want to upgrade anytime soon.

CT
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Accepted Solution

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NSBConsulting earned 0 total points
ID: 40371475
RESOLUTION

I ended up breaking down and contacting MS. After 6.5 hours on the phone with the tech this is what resolved the issues:
1. Windows Installer Registry entries had gotten corrupted - tech resolved by importing MSI registry entries from a good machine;
2. A non-readable disk partition on a removable disk was loading with Windows. This partition is built into iomega SafeCrypt disks. This partition is not usable beyond Windows XP, Server 2003.
We took this partition OFFLINE and Windows Installer was then able to successfully unpack executable files.
CAUSE: Windows MSI attempts to unpack some EXE files in preparation for installation. Unpacking would freeze when it hit the bad partition while MSI would check disks for a suitable unpacking location.
3. .NET Framework 4.5.1 was causing (and is known by MS to cause) odd behavior with the many aspects of SBS 2011/ SERVER 2008 R2.
Once .NET F/W 4.5.1 was uninstalled, we re-installed .NET F/W 4.0 and reset all applicable IIS settings to their respective .NET F/W version dependencies.

If you have any questions about the steps taken or are running into similar issues, I recommend leaving .NET F/W alone until all other avenues have been exhausted (because improper removal of any dependent .NET F/W version can cause irreversible corruption and may completely bork your OS - I had to bare metal recover twice during this project).

Please feel free to reach out to me with any further questions or concerns.
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Author Closing Comment

by:NSBConsulting
ID: 40379389
Work with MS Support Technician successfully resolved issues in entirety.
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