Can't shut computer off


R

Rebel1

If I try any of the options available via the Start/Turn Off Computer
sequence (shut down, Restart, etc.) or shutting down via Task Manager,
all open programs close and I remain at the desktop. (If any instances
of Windows Explorer had been open, they remain open. Closing them
manually before trying to shut down doesn't solve the problem.)

There are no programs waiting for a response.

The only way to shut down is to hold the power button down for about
five seconds. Then the next time I start, sometimes Windows goes through
a lengthy disc check. Regardless of whether is perform the check or not,
it doesn't log me automatically as it should.

XP, SP3. (By the way, this is not the same laptop that had the recycling
booting problem described here on 12/20/2012 at 11:17 AM ET.)

Thanks for your suggestions.

R1
 
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V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
If I try any of the options available via the Start/Turn Off Computer
sequence (shut down, Restart, etc.) or shutting down via Task Manager,
all open programs close and I remain at the desktop. (If any instances
of Windows Explorer had been open, they remain open. Closing them
manually before trying to shut down doesn't solve the problem.)

There are no programs waiting for a response.

The only way to shut down is to hold the power button down for about
five seconds. Then the next time I start, sometimes Windows goes through
a lengthy disc check. Regardless of whether is perform the check or not,
it doesn't log me automatically as it should.

XP, SP3. (By the way, this is not the same laptop that had the recycling
booting problem described here on 12/20/2012 at 11:17 AM ET.)

Try this:
http://www.microsoft.com/download/en/details.aspx?id=6676
 
V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
Thanks for that suggestion, which I hadn't seen during my googling.
Unfortunately, the problem remains.

R1

Checked the event viewer yet? Clear all events in each category and
then shutdown, get hung, power force a reboot, and check the event logs.

Did you yet try to cold boot Windows into its safe mode and then see if
the hang on shutdown still happens?
 
R

Rebel1

Checked the event viewer yet? Clear all events in each category and
then shutdown, get hung, power force a reboot, and check the event logs.

There were four events under Application; no problems.

There were 64 events under Security. Three failures: Account Logon at
time 4:11:53PM; Logon/Logoff at time 4:11:53PM; Policy Change at 4:12:07PM.

There were 27 events under System. Three Warnings (first two from
USER32; last from Server), and one Error at 4:12:40PM from the Service
Control Manager.

Nothing under IE, because I don't use it.
Did you yet try to cold boot Windows into its safe mode and then see if
the hang on shutdown still happens?

It shut down perfectly from the Safe Mode.

R1
 
V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
It shut down perfectly from the Safe Mode.

Time to use msconfig.exe and do a selective startup (and then test for
the shutdown hang). In msconfig, disable all startup items (one
checkbox on the General tab), reboot, and retest. Keep re-enabling
startup programs until the problem resurfaces at which point you know
the last re-enabled program is the culprit.
 
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R

Rebel1


Thanks for the link. I looked at about 8 of them. None actually apply to
me. For example, my computer doesn't stop responding after I attempt a
shutdown. It continues to display the desktop, and if I click on any of
the icons or Quick Launch icons, the program opens normally.

I should have mentioned in my original post that since this computer is
rarely connected to the internet, I do not have an anti-virus program
installed. (They frequently cause strange problems.) I do have the
Windows Firewall turned on.

R1
 
R

Rebel1



Thanks for the link. I looked at about 8 of them. None actually apply to
me. For example, my computer doesn't stop responding after I attempt a
shutdown. It continues to display the desktop, and if I click on any of
the icons or Quick Launch icons, the program opens normally.

I don't have a dual boot system, I don't get error messages, and I don't
have Office Professional Plus. I did have Easy CD Creator 5, so I
removed it using CCleaner and fixed the registry with CCleaner. Didn't
solve the problem.

I should have mentioned in my original post that since this computer is
rarely connected to the internet, I do not have an anti-virus program
installed. (They frequently cause strange problems.) I do have the
Windows Firewall turned on.

R1
 
R

Rebel1

Time to use msconfig.exe and do a selective startup (and then test for
the shutdown hang). In msconfig, disable all startup items (one
checkbox on the General tab), reboot, and retest. Keep re-enabling
startup programs until the problem resurfaces at which point you know
the last re-enabled program is the culprit.

On the General tab, I checked the Selective Startup button and unchecked
the Load Startup Items button. Computer shut down perfectly. After it
restarted, I checked the first 12 of the 27 Startup items, clicked on
Apply and restarted okay.

When I restarted all 27 items were checked. Now my memory is getting
fuzzy because I tried so many things. After screwing around, I now have
a MAJOR problem. When I let the disc check proceed, I got messages that:

1. "Boot.ini and win.ini first allocation unit is not valid. The entry
will be truncated."

2. "Invalid boot.ini file."

3. Windows could not start because the following files is missing or
corrupt: <Windows root>\system32\hal.dll. Please re-install a copy of
the above file.

I try going into the Safe Mode to do this, but I can't. The only
operating system offered is Windows (default), not Windows XP.

Now I'm in deep trouble. I set the BIOS to boot off the CDm and am now
attempting to reinstall XP in the same partition (without reformatting
it) using a legitimate XP Home CD. Within 30 days, I have to verify it,
which may be a problem because I already used that CD to install XP on
my desktop computer.

In retrospect, I should have lived with simply holding down the Power
button for five seconds to shutdown.

R1
 
V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
On the General tab, I checked the Selective Startup button and unchecked
the Load Startup Items button. Computer shut down perfectly.

Expected since you were still in Windows with all those startup programs
loaded. Changes you make in msconfig are not effected until the NEXT
time you startup and log into Windows. So it would be the subsequent
shutdowns that are important in troubleshooting your problem; i.e., use
msconfig to disable all, reboot, and test the shutdown, re-enable one
startup item, reboot, and test the shutdown, and so on.
After it restarted, I checked the first 12 of the 27 Startup items,
clicked on Apply and restarted okay.

Should only re-enable one at a time. If you re-enable more than one,
upon the problem reappearing you won't know which one is causing the
problem.
When I restarted all 27 items were checked. Now my memory is getting
fuzzy because I tried so many things. After screwing around, I now have
a MAJOR problem. When I let the disc check proceed, I got messages that:

1. "Boot.ini and win.ini first allocation unit is not valid. The entry
will be truncated."

Have you ever ran "chkdsk /r C:" to verify all sectors are readable on
that hard disk (for the partition for drive C: which is presumably where
Windows is installed)?
2. "Invalid boot.ini file."

Sounds like the disk check was running because there were problems with
the hard disk. Eventually chkdsk couldn't handle all the errors or
there were no more reserved sectors to move data from the bad ones. The
/r switch for chkdsk has it test ALL sectors, not just the currently
allocated ones. Alas, even chkdsk isn't that great a disk test tool.
Spinrite is much better but costs as much as replacing the hard disk;
however, it can often resurrect a hard disk. Yet since chkdsk altered
the file table for the boot.ini, hal.dll, and other files, resurrection
won't undo that file change in the file system table.

All magnetic media wanes over time regarding retentivity due to dipole
stress (they want to relax which means lowering the intensity of signal
to detect state). chkdsk doesn't re-exercise every byte of every sector
on the hard disk to realign the dipoles for max strength. A defragment
will only result in a data refresh on the portion of files that it
happens to move. Rarely do users ever rewrite every sector in every
partition on their hard disk. Lots of sectors are merely read which
means no realignment. Spinrite (payware with 100% money-back
satisfaction guarantee) can "refresh" the sectors. I haven't bothered
to hunt around for freeware that does that, too. HDD Regenerator (also
claiming a money-back guarantee but they don't describe it) might also
do a dipole refresh (i.e., rewrite every sector) but is now more costly
than Spinrite. The refresh tool would have to test a buffer area on the
disk to be good, copy the data from new sectors to test to the good
area, test the file's old sectors and, if good, optionally copy the data
back to its old sectors. I've heard of MHDD and HDAT2 freewares but
have no experience with them so I don't know if they actually refresh
the data in the sectors. They mention recovering bad sectors but
nothing about refreshing all sectors (a quick check indicates they don't
have this function). The disk diagnostics you get from disk makers
(Data Lifeguard from Western Digital, Seatools from Seagate) won't do a
dipole refresh but are just similar or have slightly better surface
testing than does chkdsk.

How old is your hard disk? I'd recommend paying for SpinRite or maybe
HDD Regenerator (never used that one) only if you need to retrieve data
from the old failing-in-progress hard disk or if you want it in your
toolkit of recovery software to use again later; else, use that money to
buy a new hard disk, remove/disable your old hard disk, install Windows
on the new hard disk, and attach your old hard disk as a slave (i.e., do
NOT boot from it) to read your data files from there to put onto your
new hard disk.
3. Windows could not start because the following files is missing or
corrupt: <Windows root>\system32\hal.dll. Please re-install a copy of
the above file.

I try going into the Safe Mode to do this, but I can't. The only
operating system offered is Windows (default), not Windows XP.

Sometimes using "last known configuration" in the F8 boot menu will get
you back to where you were -- but not if files were on bad sectors and
now they've been marked as such (and the file move to the reserve
sectors failed or you've used up all of them with prior remappings due
to bad sectors). If "last known config" works to boot into Windows then
you have something wrong in the registry regarding hardware or OS setup.

Have you ever used a registry tweaker or cleaner? If it doesn't list
what changes it proposes then it's a bomb waiting to explode by having
you make changes which might not be appropriate. If it lists its
proposed changes then it is YOUR responsibility to understand them. The
register cleaner should provide a means for backup so you can undo the
changes you allow it to perform; however, unless Windows is bootable
then those backups are worthless since the registry cleaner program
requires Windows to load so you can run that cleaner program.
Now I'm in deep trouble. I set the BIOS to boot off the CDm and am now
attempting to reinstall XP in the same partition (without
reformatting it) using a legitimate XP Home CD.

Why not restore from your last image backup?
Within 30 days, I have to verify it, which may be a problem because I
already used that CD to install XP on my desktop computer.

Doesn't the install CD have a "repair" option? As I recall, you
actually have to select Repair twice (with the 2nd one being the actual
in-place upgrade or "repair"). See:

http://www.windowsxphome.windowsreinstall.com/installxpcdrepair/indexfullpage.htm

As always with XP installs or repairs, remember to hit the F6 key when
prompted at the bottom of the screen if you are using SATA hard disks.
XP doesn't come with SATA drivers and you'll need a floppy on which the
install can find them.
In retrospect, I should have lived with simply holding down the Power
button for five seconds to shutdown.

That wouldn't fix a fail(ed|ing) hard disk or a corrupted registry.

Did you ever scan for malware? If so, what with? Not allowing a normal
shutdown is how some malware tries to protect itself from getting
cleaned out during the initial part of Windows startup.

As far as your reply about Event Viewer, I can't say anything about
unidentified entries. The Info and Warning entries were unimportant.
It would be the Error entries that would be important but you didn't
specify any. The one error from Service Control Manager probably meant
some service could not start but you didn't say which one.
 
R

Rebel1

Start regedit, expand and highlight
"HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon"
and make sure that the right window shows "Shell" as "explorer.exe". Also,
you might try shutting
down all applications and typing "shutdown -f -s" in the run box or at a
command prompt.

Ben
Nice simple things you are suggesting, Ben, but the problems I described
at 8:14 PM were overwhelming. So I just did a new installation of XP,
using existing folders. (That is, I didn't reformat c:.) No more
shutdown problems. My concern is whether I'll be able to activate XP
within the allowed 30-day period, as I've also installed the program on
my desktop computer using the same CD.

Thanks,

R1
 
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R

Rebel1

Thanks for the comprehensive reply.

The registry cleaner I use is CCleaner. It makes backups and lets me
allow or disallow a proposed change.

The laptop is six years old. But since I only use it for DJing, it
doesn't have a lot of hours of usage for its age. So I'm not sure if you
comments about disk deterioration apply. Also, while I built my desktop
from scratch, I'm certainly not going to venture into a laptop the
change a drive. Within a week or two, I'm buying a new laptop and the
present one will become my DJing backup.

The reason I tried disabling Startup items in groups was to do a
"binary" search: Isolate to one half or the other; then within the
problem half, split again in halves and so on. I guess my real mistakes
were not rebooting after I disabled a group and not letting the disc
check scan do its thing. I'm too impatient.

Since this laptop is rarely connected to the internet, I did not scan
for malware. And I didn't have any backups. So I reinstalled a fresh
copy of XP Home (without bothering with a repair option) and the
shutdown problem is gone. A few more programs to reinstall and
everything will be back to the old configuration. Microsoft's 30-day
activation period might be a problem as I already used the CD to install
XP on my desktop.

Thanks again.

R1
 
V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
So I just did a new installation of XP, using existing folders. (That
is, I didn't reformat c:.) No more shutdown problems. My concern is
whether I'll be able to activate XP within the allowed 30-day period,
as I've also installed the program on my desktop computer using the
same CD.

You didn't buy a volume license. You have a single license. If it is
an OEM license then it sticks to the *first* computer on which it was
installed -- which means you cannot install it later or concurrently on
any other computer. If it is a retail license, you have to uninstall it
(or wipe the disk) from the old computer to install it on a new
computer.

You don't make it sound like you have 2 licenses for Windows XP but are
sharing the SAME license on two computers. If you do have 2 licenses,
it doesn't matter which install CD you use. It only matters where you
enter the product key: one product key on one host for the first license
and a different product key on another host for the second license. If
you had 100 licenses, you can use the same CD for all their installs.

Considering your disk/file problems, I suggest you run "chkdsk c: /r" to
make sure your old hard disk is still okay. See my other reply
regarding why all magnetic media will wane over time regarding
retentivity (how long data can be detected before dipole stress
misaligns them to cause data corruption). The condition of your old
hard disk is suspect.
 
D

dadiOH

Rebel1 said:
Nice simple things you are suggesting, Ben, but the problems I
described at 8:14 PM were overwhelming. So I just did a new
installation of XP, using existing folders. (That is, I didn't
reformat c:.) No more shutdown problems. My concern is whether I'll
be able to activate XP within the allowed 30-day period, as I've also
installed the program on my desktop computer using the same CD.

Not to worry, you should have no problem.


--

dadiOH
____________________________

Winters getting colder? Tired of the rat race?
Maybe just ready for a change? Check it out...
http://www.floridaloghouse.net
 
R

Rebel1

You didn't buy a volume license. You have a single license. If it is
an OEM license then it sticks to the *first* computer on which it was
installed -- which means you cannot install it later or concurrently on
any other computer. If it is a retail license, you have to uninstall it
(or wipe the disk) from the old computer to install it on a new
computer.

My version looks like the first item here (Home Edition Version 2002):
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_s...as=aps&field-keywords=windows xp home edition

The white lettering on the red background at the bottom of the image
says: "For distribution only with a new PC." The black lettering on
white background is a sticker; it says: "This OEM software may not be
delivered unless accompanied by the required hardware under the
Microsoft OEM System Builder License located ...." Mine has a second
sticker that says: "Licensed for distribution only with the United
States and Canada." The product key is also stuck on the green cover
(not shown in the amazon image). I paid about $80 several years ago.

The new installation on my laptop already has started reminding me I
have 29 days remaining to verify (is that the right word?) or else the
Mayan prediction for the end of the planet will occur.
You don't make it sound like you have 2 licenses for Windows XP but are
sharing the SAME license on two computers. If you do have 2 licenses,
it doesn't matter which install CD you use. It only matters where you
enter the product key: one product key on one host for the first license
and a different product key on another host for the second license. If
you had 100 licenses, you can use the same CD for all their installs.

Considering your disk/file problems, I suggest you run "chkdsk c: /r" to
make sure your old hard disk is still okay. See my other reply
regarding why all magnetic media will wane over time regarding
retentivity (how long data can be detected before dipole stress
misaligns them to cause data corruption). The condition of your old
hard disk is suspect.

The disk in my 6-year-old laptop just passed the chkdsk test. The disk
has a second partition, d:, which also passed.

Now I have one issue on the laptop. Device Manager show a category call
Other devices. Under it, with a yellow question mark, is an Ethernet
Controller. I don't understand this since I have a Network adapter
category that shows a properly installed PCI Fast Ethernet NIC and the
laptop connects to the internet okay. The Found New Hardware wizard
searchs for a driver, including the internet, but doesn't find one.

The laptop is an Acer Aspire. Their website offers a download for the
chipset. Maybe that's what I need to reinstall. I'm reluctant to fiddle
with the chipset since it's so critical. The unzipped chipset download
includes three files: infinst_autol.exe, relnotes.htm, and a txt file.
Seems simple enough to double-click on the exe file, but its Date
Modified is 9/14/2004, 7:15 AM.

Thanks, again, for sharing your wealth of knowledge.

R1
 
V

VanguardLH

Rebel1 said:
My version looks like the first item here (Home Edition Version 2002):
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_s...as=aps&field-keywords=windows xp home edition

The white lettering on the red background at the bottom of the image
says: "For distribution only with a new PC." The black lettering on
white background is a sticker; it says: "This OEM software may not be
delivered unless accompanied by the required hardware under the
Microsoft OEM System Builder License located ...." Mine has a second
sticker that says: "Licensed for distribution only with the United
States and Canada." The product key is also stuck on the green cover
(not shown in the amazon image). I paid about $80 several years ago.

That is an OEM verion. Once it is installed (which is the case when you
buy a pre-built computer), that license sticks to the FIRST computer on
which it is installed. The "license" is tracked by the product key, not
by the CD so, for example, if you had 100 OEM licenses (for the same
version and edition of Windows) then you could use the same OEM install
CD for all 100 of them but each would have its own product key and you
can never reuse that product key (license) on another computer.

Since you installed the OEM license on one computer already, you cannot
install it on another one.
The new installation on my laptop already has started reminding me I
have 29 days remaining to verify (is that the right word?)

Validate = authenticating your installation instance.
Register = Putting yourself on Microsoft's consumer list.
Those are separate. You only need to validate. I never register.

Since the OEM license was already installed on one computer, you will
need another license (retail or OEM) to put on your other computer. If
both computers have the same OEM version installed, you can use the same
OEM install CD but you will have to use different product keys on each
(which tracks the license).

It is unlikely you have multiple install CDs from your description.
Since you have one CD (and since you didn't buy a volume license), it's
pretty easy to track how many licenses you have: count the number of
install CDs you have. If you only have 1 CD then you only have 1
license.

As I recall, there were 3-license packs of Windows XP retail license
sold (all of which had to be used within a "family") but, again, you
never mentioned that. That gives you 1 CD and 3 "personal-use within
family" licenses. It's very unlikely that is your situation. Retail
sold pre-built laptops come bundled with an OS so that's your license
for one copy of Windows (either in a hidden partition from which you are
expected to create recovery CDs or for a CD they gave you that came with
the laptop). That license of Windows sticks with that laptop. You
never mentioned if you built the desktop or bought it pre-built. You
said that you built the desktop but that doesn't indicate if you bought
an OEM or retail version of Windows.

For the laptop, use the product key on the COA sticker on the laptop to
validate that instance of Windows. On the desktop, use the COA sticker
that came with the Windows package that you were supposed to put on the
desktop's case to find the product key.
The disk in my 6-year-old laptop just passed the chkdsk test. The disk
has a second partition, d:, which also passed.

I'd also get the hard disk manufacturer's own diagnostic utility (free)
to run that on your hard disk(s). Neither of these address the dipole
stress issue that degrades retentivity over time for never-overwritten
sectors but Spinrite (and HDD Regenerator if it has the "refresh"
feature and not just identifying, moving data, and remapping bad
sectors) are a bit pricey. A cheap alterative is to save a full image
backup of each drive (which is a partition on a hard disk) across the
entire hard disk, wipe the hard disk, and restore the image(s) for the
drive(s) but that has its own hazards. Spinrite does the refresh in
place.
Now I have one issue on the laptop. Device Manager show a category call
Other devices. Under it, with a yellow question mark, is an Ethernet
Controller. I don't understand this since I have a Network adapter
category that shows a properly installed PCI Fast Ethernet NIC and the
laptop connects to the internet okay. The Found New Hardware wizard
searchs for a driver, including the internet, but doesn't find one.

Do you have an IEEE-1394 "firewire" port?
Does the laptop support Bluetooth?
The laptop is an Acer Aspire. Their website offers a download for the
chipset. Maybe that's what I need to reinstall. I'm reluctant to fiddle
with the chipset since it's so critical. The unzipped chipset download
includes three files: infinst_autol.exe, relnotes.htm, and a txt file.
Seems simple enough to double-click on the exe file, but its Date
Modified is 9/14/2004, 7:15 AM.

But then you said your laptop was 6 years old so it's possible there
weren't any newer drivers between 2004 and 2006 plus the pre-built
laptop that you bought might've come out in 2004.

For now, I wouldn't bother with those devices since obviously their
incomplete setup isn't impacting the use of your laptop. Until more is
known about your hardware, I'd just right-click on that device in Device
Manager and disable it. Then Windows won't re-scan the hardware to find
it and shove its setup wizard in your face.
 
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K

Ken Blake, MVP

Thanks for the comprehensive reply.

The registry cleaner I use is CCleaner. It makes backups and lets me
allow or disallow a proposed change.


Three points:

1. CCleaner is an excellent program, as long as you don't use its
registry cleaning functionality. Although its registry cleaning is
safer than most others, its is *still* useless and still dangerous
(see point 3 below).

2. If you insist on using a registry cleaner, first using its registry
backup capability is certainly the right thing to do. But be aware
that registry problems can lead to an unbootable computer, in which
case the backup doesn't do you much good.

3.
Registry cleaning programs are *all* snake oil. Cleaning of the
registry isn't needed and is dangerous. Leave the registry alone and
don't use any registry cleaner. Despite what many people think, and
what vendors of registry cleaning software try to convince you of,
having unused registry entries doesn't really hurt you.

The risk of a serious problem caused by a registry cleaner erroneously
removing an entry you need is far greater than any potential benefit
it may have.

Read http://www.edbott.com/weblog/archives/000643.html
and http://aumha.net/viewtopic.php?t=28099
and also
http://blogs.technet.com/markrussin.../02/registry-junk-a-windows-fact-of-life.aspx

Let me point out that neither I nor anyone else who warns against the
use of registry cleaners has ever said that they always cause
problems. If they always caused problems, they would disappear from
the market almost immediately. Many people have used a registry
cleaner and never had a problem with it.

Rather, the problem with a registry cleaner is that it carries with it
the substantial *risk* of having a problem. And since there is no
benefit to using a registry cleaner, running that risk is a very bad
bargain.
Ken Blake, Microsoft MVP
 
K

Ken Blake, MVP

Validate = authenticating your installation instance.
Register = Putting yourself on Microsoft's consumer list.
Those are separate. You only need to validate. I never register.

You say "validate," but I assume that you mean "activate."

Ken Blake, Microsoft MVP
 
P

Paul

Rebel1 said:
My version looks like the first item here (Home Edition Version 2002):
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_s...as=aps&field-keywords=windows xp home edition


The white lettering on the red background at the bottom of the image
says: "For distribution only with a new PC." The black lettering on
white background is a sticker; it says: "This OEM software may not be
delivered unless accompanied by the required hardware under the
Microsoft OEM System Builder License located ...." Mine has a second
sticker that says: "Licensed for distribution only with the United
States and Canada." The product key is also stuck on the green cover
(not shown in the amazon image). I paid about $80 several years ago.

The new installation on my laptop already has started reminding me I
have 29 days remaining to verify (is that the right word?) or else the
Mayan prediction for the end of the planet will occur.

The disk in my 6-year-old laptop just passed the chkdsk test. The disk
has a second partition, d:, which also passed.

Now I have one issue on the laptop. Device Manager show a category call
Other devices. Under it, with a yellow question mark, is an Ethernet
Controller. I don't understand this since I have a Network adapter
category that shows a properly installed PCI Fast Ethernet NIC and the
laptop connects to the internet okay. The Found New Hardware wizard
searchs for a driver, including the internet, but doesn't find one.

The laptop is an Acer Aspire. Their website offers a download for the
chipset. Maybe that's what I need to reinstall. I'm reluctant to fiddle
with the chipset since it's so critical. The unzipped chipset download
includes three files: infinst_autol.exe, relnotes.htm, and a txt file.
Seems simple enough to double-click on the exe file, but its Date
Modified is 9/14/2004, 7:15 AM.

Thanks, again, for sharing your wealth of knowledge.

R1

A possible explanation for an "extra" Ethernet controller, is an
Ethernet MAC included in the Southbridge of the chipset.

CPU
|
Northbridge
|
Southbridge --- (internal MAC) --- <no PHY chip in design>
|
| (PCI bus)
|
External Ethernet MAC and PHY chip
(i.e. the "real" Ethernet on the machine)

You look at the Plug and Play numbers, for hints about what
it might be.

In some cases, it's done that way, because the internal Ethernet on the
Southbridge is limited to 10/100BT and the designer wanted a GbE
chip, and so an external one is used off one of the system busses
(like PCI or PCI Express, as appropriate).

You can use "devcon" to gets hardware lists. The download on this
page, has devcon.exe in the i386 folder for 32 bit OSes. You unzip
the download to get at the executable. The program is run from
command prompt. (If you have a 64 bit OS, you'll need an entirely
different download recipe. This is only for 32 bit.)

http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;EN-US;Q311272

Examples of commands you can run, are shown here.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/lib..._20_find_devices_by_hardware_id_pattern_tools

Right now, I used

devcon driverfiles *

in a command prompt window, to list everything. Then, I redirect
the output to a text file in the same directory as my copy
of devcon.exe. I use this naming convention for the output
text file, so I can remember how to do it the next time :)

devcon driverfiles * > driverfiles_star.txt

This is the NIC section for my motherboard. This is representative
of what a fully installed hardware item might look for. I don't know
if things lacking driver files, would even be listed. The OS renames
the actual INF file for the install, to oemXX.inf, to avoid name
collisions. So you won't find a manufacturer directory with oem20 in it.

PCI\VEN_11AB&DEV_4364&SUBSYS_81F81043&REV_12\4&279E7BDF&0&00E2
Name: Marvell Yukon 88E8056 PCI-E Gigabit Ethernet Controller
Driver installed from c:\windows\inf\oem20.inf [SLYuk2CopGig_19.ndi].
1 file(s) used by driver:
C:\WINDOWS\system32\DRIVERS\yk51x86.sys

Now, if I didn't know what a VEN_11AB&DEV_4364 was, I could
browse the list here looking for a match. This list is not
official by any means, as the organization which registers
the IDs, doesn't make the official list visible to the public.
That allows new hardware designs to be registered, without
giving away competitive information to other companies. The
registrations are kept private. Even if the hardware came
out ten years ago. Instead, users assemble lists like this,
for their own purposes, and with plenty of holes for stuff
they didn't take note of.

http://pciids.sourceforge.net/pci.ids

HTH,
Paul
 
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