Small Business Server 2003 Lost/Missing/Disappeared CAL’s

Windows Small Business Server 2003 logo

If you still have the old server’s backup and you can get at the C:\windows\system32 folder, you “might” be able to restore the Service, rename “licstr.cpa in the system32 folder, copy “autolicstr.cpa” to Service and look in the Server Management Console to see if the licenses have been restored.  If so, back those extra CALs up immediately with the licensing wizard and put the backup file in a safe place under lock and key.

As for why the licenses have disappeared make sure your antivirus software on the Small Business Server 2003 is not scanning the licensing files/folders:

The licensing files are located at:
C:\windows\system32\licstr.cpa
C:\Windows\system32\lls

Files and Folders to exclude from AV scanning both real-time and scheduled (assuming all programs are installed to the C: drive)

Folders
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Windows Small Business
Server\Networking\POP3\Incoming mail
C:\Program Files\Exchsrvr
C:\Program Files\Trend  (substitute your AV program)
C:\Program Files\Trend Micro  (substitute your AV program)
C:\Windows\system32\inetsrv
C:\Windows\system32\lls

Files
C:\pagefile.sys
C:\windows\system32\licstr.cpa

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Matthew Glover
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Mailbag 25th October 2010

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USB 3.0 Hard Drives Going Missing in Windows Home Server

Ronald Asks:

I just installed a two-port USB 3.0 card in my WHS. Driver installed fine, and at first all drives worked well. Then one of the two drives connected to this two-port (one drive per port) card would intermittently report as ”missing” – coming in and out, then after the drive was no longer ”missing” there were file conflicts.

I tried restarting the machine several times – always with the same result. (OK at first, then this one drive would intermittently report as ”missing”, then there would be file conflicts).

I decided to remote into the machine (it is headless) and see if I could check and repair the D: drive. I right clicked on that D: drive, pulled up the error checking tool, told it to try to fix everything, and then restated the system. That was only a half hour ago, and with the 8 TB of space I’ve got I assume that this process could take some time, but not having a keyboard or a monitor on the machine I don’t know how it’s going. Should I be concerned?

This sounds like you may have a faulty USB Hard Drive, USB 3.0 Card or USB Cable. The reason you are getting file conflicts is because Windows Home Server starts to move data over to new drives once added for file replication (that is if you have file replication turned on).

When a hard drive keeps dropping out during data transfer, you will inevitably get corrupted data if it drops out enough/often. My advice would be, find the problem first, such as above, and then you need to do a CHKDSK which it sounds like you may have already done. CHKDSK can take a long time on a big drive, more so because you have told it to check every sector of the drive and make sure the data is ok, if not recover it, this is fine but Windows Home Server sees the D drive as all the drives put together, which basically means your 8TB of storage will all be CHKDSK’d.

You shouldn’t get any issues from doing a CHKDSK, although it will take hours to do the amount of storage you currently have. If after this CHKDSK has completed and there are still problems, remove the drive from the WHS console and then do a CHKDSK on a separate machine on the drive and make sure that comes back ok, only when you are sure the errors have been eradicated should you re-add the drive to the WHS console.

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Matthew Glover
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Mailbag 18th October 2010

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Error 1310 writing to file: C:\Config.Msi

This error is something I posted back in January 2008, I originally had this problem installing office 2007 with carbonite causing the problem, but it does seem to occur with many other different programs as well.

Frank asks:

I have encountered this problem installing an upgrade of adobe reader, when I uninstall the ask toolbar from internet: error 1310 writing to file: C:\Config.Msi\ec69a.rbf. Please verify that you have access to that directory. My system is Windows7 and I’m the administrator.

There are a number of ways of dealing with this problem, firstly turn off any sync programs such as iDrive or Carbonite as these tend to interfere with this process.

Method 1

Unregister Windows Installer, and then reregister Windows Installer. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. 1. On the “Start” menu, click “Run:.
  2. 2. In the “Open” box, type “msiexec /unreg”, and then press ENTER.
  3. 3. On the “Start” menu, click “Run”.
  4. 4. In the “Open” box, type “msiexec /regserver”, and then press ENTER.

Method 2

The Windows Installer service may disabled on the machine.

  1. 1. Go to “Start” -> “Run” , type “services.msc” and press on “Enter” button.
  2. 2. Double-click on the service named “Windows Installer”.
  3. 3. Check the value in the “Startup type:” field. If it’s currently set to “Disabled”, then this is the problem. Change it by selecting “Manual” from the drop-down box.

Method 3

Empty user and system “temp” folders.

  1. 1. Empty “%systemdrive%\temp” folder.
  2. 2. Empty “%systemdrive%\%windir%\temp” folder.
  3. 3. Empty “%systemdrive%\Documents and Settings\%username%\Local Settings\Temp”.

Method 4

Check if there is pending installation/s:

Warning: You should only edit these registry entries if you really know what you’re doing. Back up your hard disk first.

a. Empty “InProgress” Registry Key

Check the following registry key:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Installer\InProgress

and clean any entries that you find.

b. Empty/Rename “PendingFileRenameOperations” Registry Key:

Check the following registry key:

HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\PendingFileRenameOperations

and clean any entries that you find.

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Matthew Glover
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Mailbag 11th October 2010

Accessing RAM & CPU Information in the BIOS

Dirk asks:

How do I check my BIOS to see that it recognizes my RAM? How do I check the speed of the RAM? If needs be, how do I change it? Also how do I check if my BIOS is reading the 2 cores on my processor?

There are a few different types of BIOS with varying ways of accessing certain parts of information, unfortunately if your machine is an OEM machine such as Dell, HP, Acer or any other branded machine, chances are you aren’t going to be able to access the most part of this information.

Firstly to enter the BIOS within a few seconds of you have turning on your machine you should see information depending on the BIOS manufacturer of how to access it, such as Enter BIOS/System Information followed by pressing either an F2, F10 key or the delete key.

NOTE:
DO NOT GET THIS MIXED UP WITH SOME MACHINES SUCH DELL’S OR HP’S WHERE SOME MODELS HAVE AN F4 KEY FOR EMERGENCY BOOT WHICH WILL COMPLETELY WIPE YOUR MACHINE AS IF YOU JUST TOOK IT OUT OF THE BOX.

Once in the BIOS you are looking for something that says Standard CMOS features or advanced settings, in here you should find system information, you should be able to see Physical Memory and/or Usage Memory, and these don’t always necessarily match, you should also be able to find that your processor information is displayed around here, although it would be unusual to see the processor displayed with how many cores it has but again this depends on the BIOS itself.

Task Manager

The best way to actually check whether your machine is seeing both cores of your processor is to open up Task Manager and click on performance, under CPU History there should be multiple graphs to as many cores on your CPU, the likely hood is that if your machine wasn’t seeing all the cores on your processor it probably wouldn’t be working.

In order to check/change memory speeds, you need to be looking in the BIOS for frequency’s and voltages. Here you will be able to change the CPU, FSB (Front Side Bus Controller) and DRAM Frequency. Mostly you will need to change the system clock mode to manual/linked and then you will be able to go on and change the Memory clock speed and/or timings, you will need to refer to the RAM manufacturer and motherboard manual for exact settings.

WARNING:
UNDERTAKING ANY OF THE ADVICE ABOVE COULD SERIOUSLY DAMAGE YOUR HARDWARE SUCH AS MOTHERBOARD, RAM AND CPU IF THE SETTINGS ARE NOT CORRECT. ONLY UNDERTAKE ABOVE ADVICE WITH MANUFACTURE’S CORRECT SETTINGS AT HAND, I TAKE NO RESPONSIBILITY FOR ANY FAILURES FROM FOLLOWING OF THIS ADVICE.

Written by

Matthew Glover
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