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Windows 98 Driver bug solution - possible Add-on for Unofficial Servic

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#1
Offler

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If you open Device Manager, specific device and you read info about files which are body of driver sometimes you shall find entry like this one:

"C:\windows\system\vmm32.vxd (ntkern.vxd)"

This means that device is not using normal driver file but just generic"vmm32.vxd" slower driver. Some say that this setting causes system crashes and lock-ups and lowers system stability.

to fix this bug, following files have to be installed to both "x:\windows\system" and "x:\windows\system\vmm32" folders:

vcomm.vxd
vdmad.vxd
configmg.vxd
vdd.vxd
vmouse.vxd
ntkern.vxd
vflatd.vxd

I am using newest service pack right now (great work, my tv tuner now works fine with wdm) and have added these files into folders and system works with newly added files. I am not sure if it has improved system stability, but if it affects drivers in positive way... I cant guess...

souce: http://www.speedguid...cles.php?id=170

does it work as subscribed in link above or it has no effect? after installation of these files vmm32.vxd has been replaced with driver file previously in brackets...

Edited by Offler, 29 October 2006 - 09:01 AM.



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#2
jimmsta

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Technically speaking, Windows expects to see a vmm32.vxd file, and will load up any vxd's that are in the system directory, as it is expected that updates to the OS's critical services would be located as VXD's in the system directory.... VMM32.VXD is NOT built at microsoft, it is created upon install of the OS.

Basically, this might help reduce problems thanks to the fact that the files are pre-decompressed, and available to the OS without having to decompress the VMM32.VXD file.
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#3
Offler

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thx for explanation. i shall use it.

#4
jaclaz

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There are some common misconceptions about VMM32.VXD, you might want to read this article:
http://www.helpwithw...iles/vmm32.html

It debunks common "non-sense" issues and tells you how you can (IF needed) re-build VMM32.VXD.

jaclaz

#5
Offler

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well this line from that link explains all:
"Vmm32.vxd is a monolithic driver file made up of a number of various *.vxd files"

It is a bright idea to create one universal driver file for multiple devices, but when something goes wrong system shall be damaged... If you reinstall devices in your computer too often the system shall collapse in few weeks. I am not an expert but vmm32 could be problem in these cases...

I'd prefer to setup everything manually, instead of keep everything to autodetection (and it seems that vmm32 is product of autodetection of some sort). It is hard to say that vmm32 causes any trouble or no...

#6
eidenk

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Technically speaking, Windows expects to see a vmm32.vxd file, and will load up any vxd's that are in the system directory.

I am not sure windows will load any vxd that is the system dir. I rather think it does load them only if they are also specified in the registry.

Windows will load any vxd that is present in the VMM32 subfolder though, and those will supercede any vxd of the same name present in the vmm32.vxd file
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#7
oscardog

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Vmm32.vxd switches the processor from real to protected mode, the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time. The only time problems occur with this file is when the programmers provide a buggy vxd or they screw up in the use of wininit.ini to add replace files in Vmm32.vxd.
Making copies of Vmm32.vxd before any further vxds are added to it will prevent any necessary reinstall of windows.
It is the missuse of this file which cause errors,system crashes.Having the vxds in a seperate directory only increases boot up time.

#8
myelin

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ntkern.dll is a malware. :( I was browsing a website and entered into a ****** site. Google warned me about it but still i entered. I was using interent explorer based maxthon, then my system freezed and swap file size increased from 10 MB to 250 MB, after that a zonealarm's dialog poped up asking permission about ntkern.dll is trying to connect to internet. If it would not have been zone, then my day was ruined or i would have had a good punishment of visiting a ****** site. PM me if anybody wants to see it. Its not a porn site.

#9
eidenk

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Vmm32.vxd switches the processor from real to protected mode, the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time. The only time problems occur with this file is when the programmers provide a buggy vxd or they screw up in the use of wininit.ini to add replace files in Vmm32.vxd.
Making copies of Vmm32.vxd before any further vxds are added to it will prevent any necessary reinstall of windows.
It is the missuse of this file which cause errors,system crashes.Having the vxds in a seperate directory only increases boot up time.

I have never seen any program or driver or MS patch or anything that touches vmm32.vxd through wininit and I have installed truckloads of stuff. So that IMO the misuse of vmm32 accounts for only an extremely small fraction of problems people have with their computers.

ntkern.dll is a malware. :( I was browsing a website and entered into a ****** site. Google warned me about it but still i entered. I was using interent explorer based maxthon, then my system freezed and swap file size increased from 10 MB to 250 MB, after that a zonealarm's dialog poped up asking permission about ntkern.dll is trying to connect to internet. If it would not have been zone, then my day was ruined or i would have had a good punishment of visiting a ****** site. PM me if anybody wants to see it. Its not a porn site.

Give your link.
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#10
oscardog

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Vmm32.vxd switches the processor from real to protected mode, the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time. The only time problems occur with this file is when the programmers provide a buggy vxd or they screw up in the use of wininit.ini to add replace files in Vmm32.vxd.
Making copies of Vmm32.vxd before any further vxds are added to it will prevent any necessary reinstall of windows.
It is the missuse of this file which cause errors,system crashes.Having the vxds in a seperate directory only increases boot up time.

I have never seen any program or driver or MS patch or anything that touches vmm32.vxd through wininit and I have installed truckloads of stuff. So that IMO the misuse of vmm32 accounts for only an extremely small fraction of problems people have with their computers.

ntkern.dll is a malware. :( I was browsing a website and entered into a ****** site. Google warned me about it but still i entered. I was using interent explorer based maxthon, then my system freezed and swap file size increased from 10 MB to 250 MB, after that a zonealarm's dialog poped up asking permission about ntkern.dll is trying to connect to internet. If it would not have been zone, then my day was ruined or i would have had a good punishment of visiting a ****** site. PM me if anybody wants to see it. Its not a porn site.

Give your link.

If you program would you never want to run at ring 0???,. It would be nice to see through your eyes sometimes

#11
eidenk

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If you program would you never want to run at ring 0???,. It would be nice to see through your eyes sometimes

It would be nice if I could understand what you mean.
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#12
myelin

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Sorry the program is ntkernel.exe :blushing:

Link: http://www.auditmypc...ss/ntkernel.asp

Edited by myelin, 31 October 2006 - 10:45 AM.


#13
oscardog

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If you program would you never want to run at ring 0???,. It would be nice to see through your eyes sometimes

It would be nice if I could understand what you mean.

I am simply stating that for example if I were to interact via a vxd to the virtual machine manager to monitor files open on the system and read them I would certainly not put my vxd into the system/vmm32 folder but into vmm32.vxd. I would also think any counter measures to stop this would do so in a like manner. If you look on the web you will find mention of files being added into vmm32.vxd.
I am certain vmm32.vxd does not corrupt itself
If i recall correctly one of the 98 update packs considered doing the very same thing (building a monolithic vmm32.vxd)

Edited by oscardog, 31 October 2006 - 03:51 PM.


#14
LLXX

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the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time.

Interesting point. Would it be possible to rebuild it with only the needed VXDs (and put the other VXDs that normally aren't in it) and decrease bootup time even further?

#15
eidenk

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I am simply stating that for example if I were to interact via a vxd to the virtual machine manager to monitor files open on the system and read them I would certainly not put my vxd into the system/vmm32 folder but into vmm32.vxd)

What difference would it make ?

I would also think any counter measures to stop this would do so in a like manner. If you look on the web you will find mention of files being added into vmm32.vxd.

As I have told you, I never came across any despite installing thousands of software of all sorts. If you want a counter measure, just check wininit.ini after you install something and delete from it whatever you do not want to be changed on reboot. Usefull not only for vmm32.
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#16
jaclaz

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the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time.

Interesting point. Would it be possible to rebuild it with only the needed VXDs (and put the other VXDs that normally aren't in it) and decrease bootup time even further?


Yes, step-by-step instructions are in the link in my previous post:
http://www.helpwithw...iles/vmm32.html

Though I cannot say if it will "shave" anything off boot time.

jaclaz

#17
noguru

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the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time.

Interesting point. Would it be possible to rebuild it with only the needed VXDs (and put the other VXDs that normally aren't in it) and decrease bootup time even further?


If you want to decrease boottime you have to add vxd's that your sytem needs but are not in vmm32.vxd. Reading the artikel provided in this topic confirmed my feelings that the startpost is based on a misunderstanding of how vmm32.vxd works.

#18
oscardog

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the reason it is a monolithic driver file is to reduce pc bootup time.

Interesting point. Would it be possible to rebuild it with only the needed VXDs (and put the other VXDs that normally aren't in it) and decrease bootup time even further?


If you want to decrease boottime you have to add vxd's that your sytem needs but are not in vmm32.vxd. Reading the artikel provided in this topic confirmed my feelings that the startpost is based on a misunderstanding of how vmm32.vxd works.

In the past I have used Vxdlib, available from mdgx`s website which provides excellent compression of vmm32.vxd (please have a backup copy etc) quote
I have been able to achieve higher compression ratios than Microsoft's
DEVLIB tool by finding the best match in the history buffer rather than
just a good one"
also other vxd tools on there

eidenk I think you missunderstand me I mentioned wininit.ini as just one example of quite a few ways in which vmm32.vxd and for that matter system/vmm32 gets messed around with, i.e it is not a bug causing system crashes etc as the original poster on this issues states, errors with this file causing any instability in the os are not self inflicted. I appreciate you have installed a lot of software, but people out there do use vxds for other than they are intended.

Edited by oscardog, 02 November 2006 - 05:45 AM.


#19
eidenk

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Don't be so cryptic and give some typical examples as to how one can mess up vmm32 then.
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#20
erpdude8

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see this TweakHomePC page about VMM32.VXD:
http://www.thpc.info/upd/vmm32.html

#21
jaclaz

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Maybe this is useful for tweaking/modifying VMM32.VXD:
http://www.tbcnet.co...inp.html#VXDLIB

VXDLIB.ZIP -- VxDLib is a utility that I have written that works with the new compressed W4 file format used by VMM32.VXD to archive multiple VxDs for Windows '95: you can dump out the contents of VMM32.VXD, decompress it, recompress it (more tightly than Microsoft), and extract individual VxD's from it. Multiple VxD's can be extracted using wildcards. VXDLIB.ZIP includes VXDLIB.EXE and VXDLIB.DOC.


jaclaz

#22
Ninho

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Interesting point. Would it be possible to rebuild it with only the needed VXDs (and put the other VXDs that normally aren't in it) and decrease bootup time even further?


It is indeed possible, but generally not worth doing unless, maybe, your system has undergone many changes since it was first build. Working instructions (by Pietrek or Russinovich or? some guru of the kind) are available on the web should you want to play, Google is your friend...

[Edited : The guru in question was Clive Turvey indeed, as referenced by Jacklaz while I was writing this...]
Basically, vmm.vxd is a composite of :

- "the" VMM.VXD itself,
- an "W4" archive of other VxDs, similar to a zip, built at system installation time from the individual VxDs.

Because the VxDs are compressed and also since it is only one file to open instead of several, the load time is indeed decreased. Notice that this was already done in Windows 3.11 for Workgroups, the Win386.exe was also an archive, albeit uncompressed (the "W3" type).

HTH

--
Ninho

Edited by Ninho, 08 November 2006 - 02:55 PM.


#23
Offler

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I have made another reinstallation of win98se for testing purposes. Bios was set to manual mode - each irq has been set manually and it was forbidden to use PNP in many cases.

Then i listed device manager and only one device was using vmm32.vxd. In previous installation it was used by many devices (at least by three). Thats strange. When the PNP and IRQ selection was automatic many of drivers used it, but the system was unstable resulting in "Blue screen of death", and guess in which module happened this Exception Error. (yes, in vmm32.vxd)

but it is still hard to say if it causes trouble, maybe the same error could happen in other module (such as ntkern.vxd), but in fact i havent seen "BSOD" after i put these files in system folder.

(btw i realized one thing. ntkern.vxd has been installed in vmm32 directory, but it has not been installed in system directory. some other files has been installed in both directories during installation proces. i have no idea why...)

Edited by Offler, 12 November 2006 - 04:37 PM.


#24
PROBLEMCHYLD

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If you open Device Manager, specific device and you read info about files which are body of driver sometimes you shall find entry like this one:

"C:\windows\system\vmm32.vxd (ntkern.vxd)"

This means that device is not using normal driver file but just generic"vmm32.vxd" slower driver. Some say that this setting causes system crashes and lock-ups and lowers system stability.

to fix this bug, following files have to be installed to both "x:\windows\system" and "x:\windows\system\vmm32" folders:

vcomm.vxd
vdmad.vxd
configmg.vxd
vdd.vxd
vmouse.vxd
ntkern.vxd
vflatd.vxd

 

 

 

Is this accurate? If you look at Microsoft hotfixes that has some of the files above, it only updates files in windows\system\vmm32 and not windows\system. This means users will have different file versions in different folders.


Edited by PROBLEMCHYLD, 06 August 2013 - 01:46 PM.

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#25
LoneCrusader

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If you open Device Manager, specific device and you read info about files which are body of driver sometimes you shall find entry like this one:

"C:\windows\system\vmm32.vxd (ntkern.vxd)"

This means that device is not using normal driver file but just generic"vmm32.vxd" slower driver. Some say that this setting causes system crashes and lock-ups and lowers system stability.

to fix this bug, following files have to be installed to both "x:\windows\system" and "x:\windows\system\vmm32" folders:

vcomm.vxd
vdmad.vxd
configmg.vxd
vdd.vxd
vmouse.vxd
ntkern.vxd
vflatd.vxd

  
Is this accurate? If you look at Microsoft hotfixes that has some of the files above, it only updates files in windows\system\vmm32 and not windows\system. This means users will have different file versions in different folders.

No. The statement is not accurate, and files only need to be updated in one folder. (and should only exist in one folder, not both).




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