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Sunday, February 05, 2006

Microsoft Anti Spyware (MSAS) Registry Permission Problem


I recently worked on a computer that was behaving oddly. For one user account, MS Ant-Spyware would open and run just fine, but for the other user account, it would produce an "Unexpected Error, Quitting " error message, and not allow the application to load. The owner had tried to uninstall and reinstall MSAS as well as trying to create a new user and the problem continued. After some research, it appears that for some reason, the permissions in the registry for Microsoft Anti-Spyware get set to only the user who originally installed the software. To fix the problem I had to reset the permissions in the registry to Administrators, instead of just the one user. I will list the steps I used to do this. However, this is probably not the best way, just the quickest. Before any major registry hack you should always back up the registry and be familiar enough with Windows just incase you would make a mistake. The keys in question are found under HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT and start at gcasDtServ.Agent, there are around 80 keys here, It would probably be best to reset the permissions for each individually, but it is a heck of a lot quicker to force the permission down the entire HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT folder. To do so, right click on the HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT folder and click on "Permissions..." then it should list Users, if Administrators is not listed click on Add, then type in "Administrators" (sans quotes) in the new window that pops up. When you click on the "Check Names" button it should add the name of your computer to Administrators if you typed it in correctly, once that is in, press OK. Now when you click on the Administrators in the users list, it will state what the permissions are, check "Full Control" and press OK. This should then take care of the problem. I had uninstalled MSAS before doing the registry edit then reinstalled it after, although I do not think this was necessary.


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