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"Virtual Device Driver format in the registry is invalid."

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.win2000.general (More info?)

When I launch a 16-bit DOS application in a command-shell window, I get
the error message:

SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\VirtualDeviceDrivers, VDD. Virtual
Device Driver format in the registry is invalid. Choose 'Close' to
terminate the application. [Close] [Ignore]

I get the same results regardless of which DOS application I run.

If I click 'Close' then the application does not run. However, if
I click 'Ignore' then the application runs normally. In that case,
after I quit the application I can run it again, or any other DOS
application, in the same command shell window without getting the error
message again. However if I close that window and open a new one, then
again I get the above error the first time I launch a DOS application
in that new window.

I looked into my registry with regedit, and found the key
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\VirtualDeviceDrivers
It had the following value:
Name: VDD
Type: REG_MULTI_SZ
Value: C:\PROGRA~1\Symantec\S32EVNT1.DLL
I have Norton Anti Virus installed, and the file does exist:
12/20/2004 04:58p 83,664 bytes S32EVNT1.DLL

As an experiment, I deleted the VDD value entirely, but got the same
results. I checked on another system (without Norton Antivirus) and
found the value VDD to exist and be empty (just two nulls). I created
one like that on my system, and now I can launch DOS apps without
getting the error. But I wonder why I had the problem in the first
place? Have I lost my anti-virus protection?

- Rich
4 answers Last reply
More about virtual device driver format registry invalid
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.win2000.general (More info?)

    Virtual Device Driver Error Message in 16-Bit MS-DOS Subsystem
    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[LN];254914

    The article is pretty straight-forward. You'll need to use regedt32.exe.
    regedit.exe cannot create Reg_Multi_Sz strings. If you need to recreate the
    VirtualDeviceDrivers key; highlight the key (in the left-hand pane), then
    Edit|Delete Then (in the left-hand pane) position the cursor on the
    "Control" key, (so you'll be creating directly under "Control") then
    Edit|Add Key, then for the "Key Name:"
    VirtualDeviceDrivers
    You can leave the "Class:" blank Then proceed with steps four through seven.

    Make sure your doing this logged on as local administrator.

    --
    Regards,

    Dave Patrick ....Please no email replies - reply in newsgroup.
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    http://www.microsoft.com/protect

    "Rich Pasco" wrote:
    | When I launch a 16-bit DOS application in a command-shell window, I get
    | the error message:
    |
    | SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\VirtualDeviceDrivers, VDD. Virtual
    | Device Driver format in the registry is invalid. Choose 'Close' to
    | terminate the application. [Close] [Ignore]
    |
    | I get the same results regardless of which DOS application I run.
    |
    | If I click 'Close' then the application does not run. However, if
    | I click 'Ignore' then the application runs normally. In that case,
    | after I quit the application I can run it again, or any other DOS
    | application, in the same command shell window without getting the error
    | message again. However if I close that window and open a new one, then
    | again I get the above error the first time I launch a DOS application
    | in that new window.
    |
    | I looked into my registry with regedit, and found the key
    | HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\VirtualDeviceDrivers
    | It had the following value:
    | Name: VDD
    | Type: REG_MULTI_SZ
    | Value: C:\PROGRA~1\Symantec\S32EVNT1.DLL
    | I have Norton Anti Virus installed, and the file does exist:
    | 12/20/2004 04:58p 83,664 bytes S32EVNT1.DLL
    |
    | As an experiment, I deleted the VDD value entirely, but got the same
    | results. I checked on another system (without Norton Antivirus) and
    | found the value VDD to exist and be empty (just two nulls). I created
    | one like that on my system, and now I can launch DOS apps without
    | getting the error. But I wonder why I had the problem in the first
    | place? Have I lost my anti-virus protection?
    |
    | - Rich
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.win2000.general (More info?)

    Thanks, Dave, that did the trick!

    Unable to create a Reg_Multi_Sz string with regedit, I had already fixed
    it by exporting the key from the known good machine as a .reg file and
    importing it into the problem machine. This effected the same fix as
    described on the web site--with a null string for the VDD value.

    Using regedt32, I was able to edit the repaired key to set it back to
    the Norton Antivirus file, which now seems to work correctly too.
    I don't know how it had gotten corrupted, but it seems OK now.

    Thanks again for your help.

    - Rich

    Dave Patrick wrote:

    > Virtual Device Driver Error Message in 16-Bit MS-DOS Subsystem
    > http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;[LN];254914
    >
    > The article is pretty straight-forward. You'll need to use regedt32.exe.
    > regedit.exe cannot create Reg_Multi_Sz strings. If you need to recreate the
    > VirtualDeviceDrivers key; highlight the key (in the left-hand pane), then
    > Edit|Delete Then (in the left-hand pane) position the cursor on the
    > "Control" key, (so you'll be creating directly under "Control") then
    > Edit|Add Key, then for the "Key Name:"
    > VirtualDeviceDrivers
    > You can leave the "Class:" blank Then proceed with steps four through seven.
    >
    > Make sure your doing this logged on as local administrator.
    >
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.win2000.general (More info?)

    Glad to hear it. You're welcome.

    --
    Regards,

    Dave Patrick ....Please no email replies - reply in newsgroup.
    Microsoft Certified Professional
    Microsoft MVP [Windows]
    http://www.microsoft.com/protect

    "Rich Pasco" wrote:
    | Thanks, Dave, that did the trick!
    |
    | Unable to create a Reg_Multi_Sz string with regedit, I had already fixed
    | it by exporting the key from the known good machine as a .reg file and
    | importing it into the problem machine. This effected the same fix as
    | described on the web site--with a null string for the VDD value.
    |
    | Using regedt32, I was able to edit the repaired key to set it back to
    | the Norton Antivirus file, which now seems to work correctly too.
    | I don't know how it had gotten corrupted, but it seems OK now.
    |
    | Thanks again for your help.
    |
    | - Rich
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