keyboard/mouse problem after post-SP6a hotfix (Q299444)

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

I successfully applied service pack 6a to my NT 4.0 box (Dell XPS R450
(Pentium II)), and then applied the post-SP6a hotfix from Q299444. NT
now comes up with a "one or more services failed, check the event log"
on startup, with no keyboard or mouse.

After a bit of googling, it seems that this could be a known issue
which might be alleviated by editing one or more registry keys
(HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\(mouclass|kbdclass|msi8042|i8042prt)\Start)
and setting the value to "1" (if set to "0" or "4" which apparently
disable the keyboard/mouse).

My problem is that the computer in question is not on a LAN (only
dial-up Internet access), does not have a working floppy drive (broken
for a while, haven't needed it recently), and the partitions are
NTFS-formatted except for a single FAT partition shared in dual-boot
setup with a RedHat Linux 5.1 install (from which I'm posting this
message).

Basically, what are my options re editing the registry on this
computer? So far I can think of:
1. install a new floppy drive, boot off it (if possible) using the
rescue disk, and edit the registry ;
2. install a new floppy drive, boot off it (if possible) to install
a "temp" version of Windows NT, edit the original registry file, then
revert to the original Window NT installation ;
3. physically remove the hard-drive containing the Windows NT
install, place it in another Windows box (a Windows2000 box?), edit
the registry file, then return the drive to the original box ;
4. or ...?

If (3) is plausible, do the Windows' registry tools allow an arbitrary
registry file to be edited (i.e. I'd want to edit the registry on
H:\WINNT\SYSTEM32\???? instead of the "real" one for that box)? Are
there other tools that allow that? Actually, what's the "filename" of
the Windows registry in NT 4.0?

Thanks in advance for any help/information/pointers.

--
Jim
6 answers Last reply
More about keyboard mouse problem post sp6a hotfix q299444
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    Hi Jim,

    Don't be so sure that your problem is registry settings for the start options
    for the services concerned. In past I have seen this caused by the SRP placing
    versions of the files involved on the system which are incompatible with the
    existing (previously installed) mouse/keyboard driver files, leading to the
    symptoms you describe - ie: the start settings are correct 1=automatic, but the
    service can't start because it is physically incapable of doing so.

    Regardless of the cause however, you are correct, by some means you will need
    'offline' access to the NTFS formatted boot partition and/or registry to sort
    this out.

    WARNING: Under NO circumstances attempt a 'REPAIR' option using the NT4 install
    CD/ERD etc... or try re-installing NT4 'over the top' of the existing
    installation. Both actions will certainly destroy your existing NT4 installation
    and guarantee you will have to reload everything from scratch :-(

    I would suggest a parallel install would probably be your most viable option to
    solve your problems. I suggest you read Knowledgebase articles:

    244378 - System Cleanup After a Parallel Installation of Windows NT 4.0
    259003 - How and Why to Perform a Parallel Installation of Windows NT 4.0

    before attempting this.

    I would not attempt placing the disk in a Win2k or later machine to make changes
    unless you have no choices left. Win2k will convert the partitions to a later
    version of NTFS the first time it sees them, which will cause you problems with
    attempting to maintain them in future on the NT4 machine.

    Hope this info helps.

    Calvin.
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    On Sun, 18 Jul 2004 10:19:16 +1000, Calvin <nospam@spamcop.net> wrote:
    >Hi Jim,
    >
    >Don't be so sure that your problem is registry settings for the start options
    >for the services concerned. In past I have seen this caused by the SRP placing
    >versions of the files involved on the system which are incompatible with the
    >existing (previously installed) mouse/keyboard driver files, leading to the
    >symptoms you describe - ie: the start settings are correct 1=automatic, but the
    >service can't start because it is physically incapable of doing so.
    >
    >Regardless of the cause however, you are correct, by some means you will need
    >'offline' access to the NTFS formatted boot partition and/or registry to sort
    >this out.
    >
    >WARNING: Under NO circumstances attempt a 'REPAIR' option using the NT4 install
    >CD/ERD etc... or try re-installing NT4 'over the top' of the existing
    >installation. Both actions will certainly destroy your existing NT4 installation
    >and guarantee you will have to reload everything from scratch :-(
    >
    >I would suggest a parallel install would probably be your most viable option to
    >solve your problems. I suggest you read Knowledgebase articles:
    >
    >244378 - System Cleanup After a Parallel Installation of Windows NT 4.0
    >259003 - How and Why to Perform a Parallel Installation of Windows NT 4.0
    >
    >before attempting this.
    >
    >I would not attempt placing the disk in a Win2k or later machine to make changes
    >unless you have no choices left. Win2k will convert the partitions to a later
    >version of NTFS the first time it sees them, which will cause you problems with
    >attempting to maintain them in future on the NT4 machine.
    >
    >Hope this info helps.
    >
    >Calvin.

    Thank you very much for the information, especially for the Win2k warnings
    re NTFS versions. I did find an article in the KnowledgeBase (305462)
    which describes my symptoms, and ascribes it to an incorrect msi8042.sys
    driver which s/b replaced by i8042prt.sys (much like you described).

    That article offers two options:
    1. doing a parallel install ;
    2. booting from a Win2k CD and using the "Recovery Console" (Q229716).

    Re (2), would you expect issues re NTFS versions using the
    Win2k Recovery Console, too? I guess I'd expect it, as
    for this to work I eventually have to write to the NTFS partition to
    rename/move the .sys files.

    For (1) I'd have to install a new floppy drive (as my current one is hosed)
    but that shouldn't be too painful, I guess.

    Thanks again.

    --
    Jim
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    Hi Jim,

    Don't have a lot of experience with recovery console - I think you would
    probably get away with it not 'fiddling' with your NTFS partitions, but may be
    worth seeking more informed opinions before attempting it :-)

    A parallel install is probably the safest option - as you said tho, it will need
    a working floppy first :-(

    Calvin.
  4. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    In article <40fa1808@duster.adelaide.on.net>, Calvin <nospam@spamcop.net> wrote:
    >Hi Jim,
    >
    >Don't have a lot of experience with recovery console - I think you would
    >probably get away with it not 'fiddling' with your NTFS partitions, but may be
    >worth seeking more informed opinions before attempting it :-)
    >
    >A parallel install is probably the safest option - as you said tho, it will
    > need
    >a working floppy first :-(
    >
    >Calvin.

    Thanks again for your help. I ended up going with the parallel install option
    after finding a bootable NT 4.0 CD. Things went pretty much as the Knowledge
    Base articles said re the parallel install itself and the renaming of the
    original install's msi8042.sys file.

    Things seem to be back to normal, and I'll probably leave the parallel install
    on in case I ever need something like it again.

    --
    Jim
  5. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    Hi Jim,

    I know quite a lot of people who have taken your decision and left a 'parallel
    install' permanently in place on the machine - it does provide a handy back
    door. I would suggest you make sure that this parallel install is updated with
    Service Packs, hotfixes etc... The last thing you would want is the situation
    where using the parallel install makes your vulnerable to new problems. I
    actually have my parallel install on a removable media drive, so it is only
    accessable when the media is inserted in the drive, and I deliberately did not
    load any network drivers, so the machine lives in isolation from the rest of the
    world whilst this copy of NT4 is running.

    Glad you managed to solve your keyboard/mouse situation. That particular problem
    has been the undoing of more than one person here in past :-(

    Calvin.
  6. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsnt.misc (More info?)

    > Things seem to be back to normal, and I'll probably leave the parallel
    install
    > on in case I ever need something like it again.

    Glad to read that you managed to sort this nightmare out.

    For future reference, a couple of tips that you might find useful.

    1) Because of this kind of problem, I _always_ partition every installation
    so that I have a second (D:) partition of size ~2GB. In the event of a
    disaster, I can do a parallel installation into that D: for repair purposes.
    It's cleaner and safer.

    In fact, I do make use of the D: partition - its not just a waste of disk
    space. I place the page file in it, and I also locate the Internet Explorer
    "Temporary Internet Files" in there, which improves performance by
    controlling fragmentation and makes backups much easier. All these can be
    simply deleted to make space before a disaster recovery.

    2) (I’ve not used this under NT4.0, but) If you had access to another
    machine over a LAN, using the Remote Registry service might have been helpful.

    3) Make sure to get hold of a bootable NT4 setup CD that _incorporates_ at
    least SP4, since NT4SP4+ has enhanced NTFS (Q192673, Q184299) support, and
    support for large IDE drives.

    Q - Recovery console: I don't know off-hand whether the NT5.x (Windows
    2000/Xp/Server2003) Recovery Console performs "upgrades" on NTFS4 volumes or
    not, but it would be good to know.

    Regards,

    Cecil Ward.
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