Aaron Stebner's WebLog

Thoughts about setup and deployment issues, WiX, XNA, the .NET Framework and Visual Studio

Updated: what to do if other .NET Framework setup troubleshooting steps do not help

Updated: what to do if other .NET Framework setup troubleshooting steps do not help

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A while back, I posted a set of instructions that can be used to try to resolve .NET Framework installation issues in case other troubleshooting steps listed on my blog, in knowledge base articles or elsewhere do not work.  Those steps are out of date now because several new versions of the .NET Framework have been released since then, a new verification tool has been released and there are some other helpful steps that are not listed there.  Instead of trying to update those steps in that old post, I decided to write a replacement post that contains the new information.

I have created a .NET Framework troubleshooting guide that contains links to information about various types of .NET Framework installation issues that we've seen over the years.  However, the links in that article do not cover all possible errors, and there are likely some scenarios that cannot be resolved by any of the workarounds listed in that article.

If you run into an issue installing or using the .NET Framework or a .NET Framework hotfix or service pack, and the links in the .NET Framework troubleshooting guide do not help, I usually suggest trying the following steps in order to get your system back into a known state and then re-installing the .NET Framework and any hotfixes or service packs that apply to it:

  1. Go to the Add/Remove Programs control panel and attempt to repair the version of the .NET Framework that is causing problems on the system

    Note: There are a few versions of the .NET Framework that are installed as OS components, and therefore will not appear in Add/Remove Programs.  The .NET Framework 1.0 is an OS component on Windows XP Media Center and Tablet PC Editions.  The .NET Framework 1.1 is an OS component on Windows Server 2003.  The .NET Framework 2.0 and 3.0 are OS components on Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008.  The .NET Framework 2.0, 3.0 and 3.5 are OS components on Windows 7.  The .NET Framework 2.0, 3.0, 3.5 and 4.5 are OS components on Windows 8.

  2. If a repair does not help, then try to download and run the .NET Framework Repair Tool to see if it can find and fix any issues with the .NET Framework on your computer.
  3. If the repair tool does not help, then go to the Add/Remove Programs control panel and attempt to uninstall the version of the .NET Framework that is causing problems on the system
  4. If uninstall still fails from Add/Remove Programs, download the .NET Framework cleanup tool and choose to remove the version of the .NET Framework that is causing problems on your system
  5. Download and install the version of the .NET Framework that you cleaned up in step 2 or 3.  Here are some download links for various versions of the .NET Framework:

    .NET Framework 1.0
    .NET Framework 1.1
    .NET Framework 2.0
    .NET Framework 3.0
    .NET Framework 3.5
    .NET Framework 4
    .NET Framework 4.5
    .NET Framework 4.5.1
    .NET Framework 4.5.2

    Note - if you are having trouble installing the .NET Framework 2.0, 3.0 or 3.5, I recommend trying to installing the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 because it will install the .NET Framework 2.0 SP2 and 3.0 SP2 behind the scenes, and these versions contain additional fixes not in the original 2.0, 3.0 or 3.5 releases.  Plus, 3.5 SP1 will automatically uninstall any older versions of 2.0, 3.0 or 3.5 that are on your system, so you can save some time by not trying to install a version of the .NET Framework that 3.5 SP1 is going to uninstall during its install process.

  6. (optional) Download and run the .NET Framework verification tool to double-check that the version of the .NET Framework that you installed in step 2 installed correctly
  7. Download and install any service packs or hotfixes for the version of the .NET Framework you just installed by running the setup package directly instead of using Windows Update.  Running it directly will allow the service pack or hotfix to display error dialogs (whereas, Windows Update will automatically suppress any error dialogs).  Here are some download links for various .NET Framework service packs:

    .NET Framework 1.0 SP3
    .NET Framework 1.1 SP1
    .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 family update; there are several versions depending on what OS you are running - Windows XP and Server 2003 x86, Windows XP and Server 2003 x64, Windows Vista and Server 2008 x86, Windows Vista and Server 2008 x64

    Note - the .NET Framework 2.0 SP1 and SP2 and 3.0 SP1 and SP2 are slipstream replacements for the original versions of 2.0 and 3.0, and the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 is a slipstream replacement for the original version of 3.5.  You do not need to install 2.0 then SP1 and SP2, 3.0 then SP1 and SP2, or 3.5 then SP1 as separate steps like you do for 1.0 and 1.1.  Instead you can skip directly to installing 2.0 SP2, 3.0 SP2 and 3.5 SP1.

.NET Framework setup log file locations

If none of the above help, then it can be useful to look at the .NET Framework setup log files for more in-depth troubleshooting.  Here are links to information about the log files created by each version of the .NET Framework:

The .NET Framework 1.0 and 1.1 are not listed above because they do not create log files automatically.  You need to use steps like the ones listed in this blog post in order to create log files for .NET Framework 1.0 and 1.1 setup.

.NET Framework setup packaging notes that affect uninstalls

The .NET Framework 1.0, 1.1 and 2.0 are all side-by-side versions that can be installed and uninstalled without affecting the others.  This means that if you are running into an issue in the .NET Framework 2.0, for example, you do not necessarily need to remove the .NET Framework 1.0 and 1.1 in addition to removing 2.0.

The .NET Framework 3.0 is an add-on that requires the .NET Framework 2.0 to be present as a prerequisite.  If you have the .NET Framework 3.0 installed, you will not be allowed to uninstall the .NET Framework 2.0 until you first uninstall the .NET Framework 3.0.

The .NET Framework 3.5 is an add-on that requires the .NET Framework 2.0 SP1 and the .NET Framework 3.0 SP1 to be present as prerequisites.  If you have the .NET Framework 3.5 installed, you will not be allowed to uninstall the .NET Framework 3.0 SP1 or 2.0 SP1 until you first uninstall the .NET Framework 3.5.  You will also not be allowed to uninstall the .NET Framework 2.0 SP1 until you first uninstall the .NET Framework 3.5 and the .NET Framework 3.0 SP1.

The .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 is an add-on that requires the .NET Framework 2.0 SP2 and the .NET Framework 3.0 SP2 to be present as prerequisites.  If you have the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 installed, you will not be allowed to uninstall the .NET Framework 3.0 SP2 or 2.0 SP2 until you first uninstall the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1.  You will also not be allowed to uninstall the .NET Framework 2.0 SP2 until you first uninstall the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 and the .NET Framework 3.0 SP2.

<update date="4/22/2008"> Added information and a link to the Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 Registration Correction Tool, which should be used before resorting to trying the cleanup tool for .NET Framework 2.0 issues. </update>

<update date="9/21/2008"> Added a link to download the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 now that it has shipped. </update>

<update date="9/23/2008"> Updated the link to the .NET Framework 2.0 Registration Correction Tool to point to the official knowledge base article now that it has been published. </update>

<update date="1/25/2009"> Added a link to the standalone .NET Framework 2.0 SP2 installer. </update>

<update date="2/25/2009"> Added links to the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 family update installers. </update>

<update date="3/23/2009"> Fixed broken link to the .NET Framework cleanup tool. </update>

<update date="3/28/2009"> Fixed broken link to the .NET Framework setup verification tool. </update>

<update date="12/2/2010"> Added download link for .NET Framework 4. </update>

<update date="9/8/2012"> Added download link for .NET Framework 4.5 and fixed broken links to other versions of the .NET Framework. </update>

<update date="1/24/2013"> Added a link to the .NET Framework Repair Tool. <update>

 

  • Hi D.Hagop - Thanks for posting your experiences.  Overall, I recommend using the steps listed at the top of this blog post in the order that I listed them to try to troubleshoot .NET Framework installation issues.  The cleanup tool is designed as a last resort tool only, not as a replacement for the normal uninstall process for the versions of the .NET Framework.  The steps in this blog post explain how to try the uninstall steps and additional troubleshooting steps before trying the cleanup tool.

  • Hi Aaron,

    i am struggling with installation of 2.0. i tried all steps multiple times. OS - XP SP-3

    I used netfx_setupverifier_new.zip 1.1 installation is ok, while 2.0 & 2.1 installation it throws follwing error on log

    [01/27/09,19:16:11] Process successfully launched. Waiting 300 seconds for it to complete.

    [01/27/09,19:16:13] ****ERROR**** Process 'Netfx20TestApplication.exe' exited with return code -532459699

    [01/27/09,19:16:13] ****ERROR**** Verification failed for product .NET Framework 2.0 SP1

    any idea how to solve this?

    Thanks in advance..!

  • Hi Ashishdave - If you've already tried the steps listed above in this blog post and you still see this error, then I'd suggest trying to run the Netfx20TestApplication directly to see if it gives any more useful error messages.  You can do that by using the following steps:

    1.  Download netfx_setupverifier_new.zip from http://astebner.sts.winisp.net/Tools/netfx_setupverifier_new.zip and save it to your computer

    2.  Extract the file netfx_setupverifier.exe from the .zip file

    3.  Run netfx_setupverifier.exe /c and choose a path to extract the files to

    4.  Go to the path you extracted to in step 3 and double-click on the file named Netfx20TestApplication.exe and see if it displays any errors.

  • Hi Aaron, thanks for prompt response

    I tried running application as you mentioned,

    It throws pop-up with title "WindowsApplication11"

    WindowsApplication1 has encountered a problem and need to close. We are sorry for inconvenience.

    If you are in middle of something, the information you wre working on might lost.

    <close button>

  • Hi Ashishdave - That Netfx20TestApplication is a very simple application that is designed to see if the CLR can be loaded and WinForms can be instantiated.  If it crashes, there is something fundamentally wrong with the CLR on your system.  Does it give you the ability to gather any additional information when it crashes like this (such as a callstack)?  Also, do you see any useful information in the event logs on your system when it crashes?

    For this type of problem where setup reports success but yet the product doesn't work, you may also need to try to contact Microsoft technical support for more in-depth troubleshooting and debugging assistance.  You can find contact information for them at http://support.microsoft.com.

  • PingBack from http://ablogontech.wordpress.com/2009/02/04/error-1304-installing-sql-support-files/

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  • Dear Aaron,

    you're speaking here about "the version that is causing you problems"... in all your steps.

    But what about that, I'm installing 3.5 Family update, and it complains that it cannot uninstall "Product: Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 Service Pack 2 -- Error 1714.The older version of Microsoft .NET Framework 2.0 Service Pack 2 cannot be removed.  Contact your technical support group.  System Error 1612.".

    There's no .NET 2.0 SP2 on my system... There's only 2.0 SP1, a 3.0 Hotfix KB932471, and 3.0 SP1.

  • Hi Mantvydas - That error message is a bit misleading, and I apologize for that.  In this case, the "older version" of the .NET Framework 2.0 SP2 could be either the original version of the .NET Framework 2.0 or the .NET Framework 2.0 SP1.

    Can you try uninstalling 3.0 SP1 and then 2.0 SP1 from Add/Remove Programs on your system and see if that helps fix this issue?  If those uninstalls also fail, then please proceed with trying the cleanup tool described in step 4 of this blog post.

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  • I am running Windows XP SP3. I have tried soooo many times to get a working version of .Net Framework 2.0 installed. The same failure on .Net Framework 3.0 and 3.5 occur as noted below. I have stopped all of my non-windows services via msconfig and ran the install - to no avail. Help?

    [08/25/09,13:01:04] Beginning of new SetupVerifier error logging session

    [08/25/09,13:01:04] Activity log file location: C:\DOCUME~1\cos\LOCALS~1\Temp\setupverifier_main_08-25-09_13.01.04.txt

    [08/25/09,13:01:04] Error log file location: C:\DOCUME~1\cos\LOCALS~1\Temp\setupverifier_errors_08-25-09_13.01.04.txt

    [08/25/09,13:01:04] Build created on July 17, 2009

    [08/25/09,13:01:04] Detected operating system: Windows XP (x86)

    [08/25/09,13:01:15] Process 'Netfx20TestApplication.exe' exited with return code -1

    [08/25/09,13:01:15] Verification failed for product .NET Framework 2.0

    [08/25/09,13:01:18] SetupVerifier exiting with return value 100

  • Hi Jcmesina1 - The error in your log is showing that a small test application that uses the .NET Framework is not able to run correctly.  That means that there is something wrong with the .NET Framework 2.0 on your system.  If you haven't already, I'd suggest trying the steps listed at the top of this blog post to manually remove all versions of the .NET Framework from your system.  Then, try to install the .NET Framework 3.5 SP1 from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?familyid=AB99342F-5D1A-413D-8319-81DA479AB0D7 (it will install 2.0 SP2 and 3.0 SP2 for you behind the scenes).

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