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Thread: Cryptic Message that "Windows can't open Help and Support...

  1. #1
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Cryptic Message that "Windows can't open Help and Support...

    because a system service is not running. To fix, start the service named Help and Support."

    How do I do this or what do I do? I got the message when I went Start --> Help and Support.

    A reboot did not help.

    wumply

  2. #2
    Nobody knows I'm a dog. TZ Veteran petard's Avatar
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    Start button --> Run --> type this:

    %SystemRoot%\system32\services.msc /s

    Hit return.

    Look for "Help and Support"

    Start it.

    Many thanks to egghead for the cool .sig

  3. #3
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Petard:

    Didn't work. Did exactly as you directed. When I clicked on Help & Support in the "Services - Local" window, it said "Service Status: Started" and I noticed that the startup type was 'automatic'. So I went Start --> Help and support. The entry "? Help and support" I now clicked on appeared as a tiny window reading "? Help and support". This vanished in 1/2 second or less and that was that. I tried accessing Help and Support again--nothing. I checked everything re your instructions but that also changed nothing.

    Do I have other options?

    wumply

  4. #4
    Nobody knows I'm a dog. TZ Veteran petard's Avatar
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    Are you running any firewall software? Is the Remote Procedure Call Service running (and enabled "Automtic")?

    Do you really need the "Help and Support" service? I personally disabled mine on my PC. Like I really want help from Micro$oft....

    Many thanks to egghead for the cool .sig

  5. #5
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    RPC is started and status is auto.

    RPC (locator) wasn't started. I started it and made it automatic.
    Same problem as before.

    In spite of not being able to access Help and Support (and yes, I like to be able to do that on occasion), I have no trouble accessing any site on the net or using any program. Save for this current problem, my computer is working 100% in all respects, except for an occasional minor quirk. Yes, I am using a firewall, the one built in in XP but it was in use before the Help and Support problem occurred.

  6. #6
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    You can try some of the things listed here:
    http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/top10faqs.htm

  7. #7
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Rik...searching the net I had come across across kellys-korner before I got your reply and found this:

    Start Menu/Help and Support doesn't work. Go to Start/Run and type in helpctr-regserver and Start/Run/CMD: regsvr32 /u hhctrl.ocx. Was told "Windows cannot find" (either one).

    Then there was this:

    To reinstall Help and Support: Go to C;\Windows\inf\pchealth.inf. Right click and choose install. Have your CD handy.

    I did. I inserted my XP Home edition disk in my CDROM drive, told Windows the letter of the drive and clicked OK. Got the message: "Setup cannot copy the file HCAppRes.dll"

    There were no other headings in bold that applied to my situation.

    Suggestions?

  8. #8
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    It is normally found in c:\windows\pchealth\helpctr\binaries. Search for it there and see if it can be found. Also don't forget the System Restore feature.

  9. #9
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    OK, it is there--where you said. So is helpctr.exe and helpsvc.exe. I tried clicking the former but all it did was highlight. You were referring to the HCAppRes.dll file in your reply...correct? What could I do anything with that file that could get Help and Support to appear when I click on Help and Support in Start --> Help and Support?

    I suppose it's easier to go back with System Restore.

  10. #10
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Well if helpctr.exe is there, can you d-click on it and does Help and Support open?

  11. #11
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    I did click on helpctr.exe, rik, but all it did was highlight. It didn't open.

  12. #12
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Try system restore to a point just prior to your last Windows update. I have a feeling that one of your critical updates may have cause it.

  13. #13
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    Well, rik, here is what I did and here is what happened. A bit long; please bear with me.

    First, I tried going back about 12 days--this was not before the last Windows update but if it worked, it would mean fewer programs to reinstall. I figured Help and Support might have been screwed up in those 12 days. After the restore I clicked Start > Help and Support and, as before, the entire Start screen vanished. Message: "Windows can't open Help and Support as a system service is not running. To fix, start the service called Help and Support." So I went to services and Help and Support had no status. So I started it up. This time I got the message: "Could not start on local computer. Error 1083. The executable program that this service is configured to run in does not implement the service."

    Now, per your suggestion to restore back before the last Windows update installs, I went back further. I found I installed Win XP KB840374 and Windows Update V4 on May 11. The 10th. of May showed only a system checkpoint so I restored things to that date.

    After the restore and reboot Windows Updates had updates waiting for me. I did not install any but went instead to Windows Update to see what they had. It was XP KB 840374. I did not install it but went to services on my computer to see if Help and Support needed starting up. Well, Help and Support was simply not there. I closed out of there and tried clicking Start > Help and Support and got what I expected, viz: "Windows can't open Help and Support as a system service is not running. To fix, start service named Help and Support."

    Now if I go back further I find that on May 8 I installed 11 XP updates plus the Windows V4 update and Service Pack 1. The Restore points do not go back beyond the May 8th group.

    So I guess I should reinstall Service Pack 1 (which takes forever--literally--it takes a full hour to install every time (3 of them) I've done it and sometimes it screws up too and I start in all over again.) If you agree and say "Yes, push has come to shove" do I need to uninstall SP 1 and those 11 updates before I reinstall them? And do I do that from Add-Remove or how?.

    wumply

  14. #14
    Old and Cranky Super Moderator rik's Avatar
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    Do you remember when the last time was that you used the Help and Support? Obviously any changes since then are suspect...

    Run MSCONFIG, check services and see if any are unchecked for what ever reason. I realize that you have probably already run a virus scan but if not please do so. Also check for Spyware...I've seen a lot of strange things occur because of the unwanted crap that gets left on our systems.
    Also what make and model is the computer?
    After that let me know.

  15. #15
    Triple Platinum Member wumply's Avatar
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    OK...here are answers.

    1. Don't remember when I used Help & Support. It was a long, long time ago--at least 2 months.
    2. Ran MSCONFIG...Services. All were checked.
    3. Ran a virus scan. Nothing found.
    4. Spyware. l ran Lavasoft Ad-Aware. Found registry entries for W32.Blaster.Worm and W32.Blaster.a.worm and 38 tracking cookies. I deleted them all.
    5. I got the computer from a local dealer now out of business. It has no brand name that I can find. It has a Intel P4 processor, 1.7 ghz. The current motherboard (it was just replaced) was manufactured by AOpen.com and the mobo's model # is MX46-533V.

    Tried clicking on Help and Support from 'Start'. That window just disappeared as before. That was all.

    Note: Since I wrote you my long letter I restored back to a later Restore Point since I needed some programs in that later restore. In this (the current) Restore Point I did determine that in Services, Help and Support was there and was started and set to Automatic.

    Could it be that the bunch of XP KB files and Service Pack 1, installed on May 8, somehow got corrupted during install and that could be the problem? Remember, I only went back to the 10th. of May as that was the Restore Point just before the last update (on the 11th.)

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