A number of Windows 7 testers have succumbed to a bug that is causing them to crash randomly whenever they try to start Windows Update or install anything using Microsoft's MSI installer. But a couple of testers have created work-arounds that seem to fix the problem.
From enthusiast Chris Holmes' blog:
"Many users have started experiencing random crashing of explorer and msiexec.exe when trying to start Windows Update or install anything that uses an MSI based installer. This issue is bad enough that some people have even formatted because of it, only to have it come back again.
"(Within Windows') Rafael (Rivera) has discovered that the fault lies with the SQM Client which is part of the Customer Experience Improvement Program. It seems that ANY process that calls WinSqmStartSession in ntdll.dll will start crashing when MachineThrottling is enabled in the registry, which seems to happen as a result of CEIP running."
Based on the comments in response to Holmes' post, quite a few testers have been hamstrung by this bug and didn't know what was wrong until now.
Holmes published a couple of workarounds for the problem. I've contacted Microsoft to see how and when it plans to address the update bug. (No word back yet.)
Sure, some will say "it's a BETA
! There are supposed to be BUGS
!" But as another Windows tester, Bryant Zadegan noted in a post to the AeroXperience site, there are bugs and then there are bugs
"Microsoft needs to get CEIP in Windows 7 back up and running as soon as humanly possible. The more people disable the CEIP for the sake of avoiding this bug, the less feedback."
Any testers out there been stymied by the Win 7 update bug?
Update (on January 20)
: Holmes notes that Microsoft has created a fix to the installer problem
and pushed information about it to the Windows 7 Action Center.
Update No. 2 (January 20)
: Here's the information Microsoft is releasing about the installer crash:
"Microsoft deployed a configuration change which exposed this (installer) problem. New machines installing Windows 7 Beta will not experience this problem. An issue related to the Customer Experience Improvement Program (CEIP also known as SQM) client in the Windows 7 Beta is causing crashes of Explorer, MSI-based installers and other applications. In order to resolve the issue, impacted customers need to run the following script from an elevated command prompt. This script will stop crashes related to CEIP and removes those changes (registry keys) to prevent further CEIP related crashes.
1. Select and copy the following to your clipboard:
reg delete HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SQMClient\Windows\DisabledSessions /va /f
2. Click on "Start", then "All Programs", then "Accessories"
3. Right click on "Command Prompt", then click on "Run as administrator"
4. In the UAC prompt, verify that the program's name is "Windows Command Processor" and then click "Yes"
5. Right click on the "Administrator: Command Prompt" window's black area, then select "Paste"
6. Press "Enter", you should see "The operation completed successfully".
If you see "ERROR: Access is denied", please make sure you followed Step 3.
7. Close the "Administrator: Command Prompt window"