Ask Dr. Bob Your NT Questions - 01 Jun 1999

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Q: I upgraded from Windows 95 to Windows NT 4.0. When I try to use Win95 backups to restore data, the system sends me the following error message: Foreign Tape. The tape in the drive must be erased before it can be used. Can I use my Win95 backups to perform a restore in NT?

The format of Win95 and NT backup tapes is completely different. Only Win95 machines can read Win95 backup tapes. If you have FAT drives, you can dual-boot between NT and Win95, then perform a restore. If you're on a network, you can restore the data to a Win95 machine, then move the data over the network. No matter which method you use to perform a restore, you need to start using the NT Backup application. Back up your NT system on new tapes, and save the old Win95 backups.

Q: I can't create user profiles on Windows 98 systems in my Windows NT network. The Win98 systems always store the profiles locally rather than on the NT servers. Can I set up the Win98 profiles to default to my PDC's Profiles directory?

The problem is that Win98 doesn't use the Profiles directory on an NT server—only NT profiles use the Profile directory. However, you can use the following instructions to maintain a current copy of users' profiles on your PDC:

  1. In each Win98 machine's Network applet in Control Panel, select Client for Microsoft Networks from the list of installed network components, and click Properties.
  2. Select Log on to Windows NT domain, enter the domain name, and click OK.
  3. Be sure that you've properly set up each Win98 user and assigned each user a home directory on an NT network server.
  4. When the user logs off, Win98 automatically places an updated user profile in the user's assigned home directory on the NT network (i.e., \\specified_server\user's home directory).

Q: I upgraded from Windows NT 3.51 to NT 4.0. The upgrade process was seamless; however, the process altered some of the files on the Macintosh-accessible volume. Macintosh users cannot see filenames created on a Macintosh system that contain an underscore character; PC users can see the filenames but can't open the files. If I replace the underscore in the filenames with an NT 4.0 underscore symbol, all users can view and open the files. How do I solve this problem?

Upgrade to Service Pack 3 (SP3) or later, and these problems will disappear.

Q: How do I prevent users from mapping network drives?

If you're using FAT, you can prevent mapping only by restricting users' permissions on network drives. NTFS lets you assign permissions at the file level, so you have several options to prevent users from mapping network drives. For example, if you assign No Access to a user or group of users on \%systemroot%\system32\ mprui.dll, none of the users can map a drive. If you assign No Access to \%systemroot%\system32\net1.exe, you further inhibit mapping. If you assign No Access to \%systemroot%\ system32\net.exe, users can't use the Net command (i.e., users can't use a logon script to map drives).

Q: I upgraded to Windows NT 4.0 Service Pack 4 (SP4). When my Adaptec SCSI driver is loaded, I get a blue screen and a Stop 0x0000007B message when I boot my machine. Can I fix this problem without reloading NT?

This problem is easy to fix whether you're running FAT or NTFS. SP4 includes two versions of the aic78xx driver for the Adaptec 2940 and 7800 family of SCSI controllers: aic78xx.sys is 26,704 bytes, and aic78xx.001 is 56,272 bytes. To fix your problem, you need to replace the aic78xx driver in the \%systemroot%\winnt\ system32\drivers folder with the aic78xx driver from the i386 directory in SP4.

Complete the following steps to fix the problem on a FAT system:

  1. Boot from a DOS disk that contains both aic78xx files.
  2. From a command prompt or NT Explorer, go to the \%systemroot%\winnt\ system32\drivers folder.
  3. Delete the aic78xx.sys file, and copy the aic78xx.sys file from the DOS disk into the \%systemroot%\winnt\system32\drivers folder.
  4. Remove the DOS disk, and boot NT. If NT successfully boots, you've fixed the problem. If you can't boot NT, reboot from the DOS disk, go to the \%systemroot%\winnt\system32\drivers folder, delete aic78xx.sys, copy aic78xx.001 into the drivers folder, and rename aic78xx.001 as aic78xx.sys.

Complete the following steps to fix the problem on an NTFS system:

  1. Boot a second version of NT. If you don't have a second version, you can use Systems Internals' ERD Commander utility (
  2. From NT Explorer, check the size of aic78xx.sys in the \%systemroot%\winnt\system32\ drivers folder, as Screen 1 shows.
  3. If the aic78xx.sys file is 26,704 bytes, copy the other aic78xx driver (i.e., 56,272 bytes) to the \%systemroot%\winnt\ system32\drivers folder, and rename it aic78xx.sys. If the other aic78xx driver is in the \%systemroot%\winnt\system32\ drivers folder, copy the 26,704-byte aic78xx.sys file to the folder.

Q: What features has Microsoft added to NTFS in Windows 2000 (Win2K)? Can I dual-boot Win2K and Windows NT 3.51 or NT 4.0?

Microsoft has added new features to Win2K's file system, such as disk quotas, encrypted files, journaling, and junctions. Win2K's Encrypting File System (EFS) can automatically encrypt and decrypt files as the OS writes them to and reads them from the hard disk. In addition, the Win2K file system's journaling functionality creates a log of all changes users make to files on the volume. Reparse points let programs trap an open operation against objects in the file system and run the program's code before returning file data. For example, Win2K systems can use junctions, which sit on top of reparse points, to remap an operation to a target object. This functionality is a crucial aspect of the Win2K file system. Finally, administrators can use quota levels, such as Off, Tracking, and Enforced, to control users' access to a drive on a per-user basis.

To answer your second question, when you install Win2K, the installation upgrades any existing NTFS volumes to the Win2K file system. If you're installing Win2K on a system that is running any version of NT other than NT 4.0 with Service Pack 4 (SP4), the installation program will inform you that you won't be able to access earlier NT versions. If you install Win2K on an NT 4.0 machine running SP4, your system can use SP4's ntfs.sys to read from and write to Win2K's file system, but it can't use the Win2K file system's new attributes. The first time you access removable media, your Win2K system will convert it to the Win2K file system. In other words, the Win2K installation process limits your ability to dual-boot Win2K and earlier NT versions.

In addition, critics have complained about NTFS's slow performance relative to FAT. You don't have to be a rocket scientist to predict that Win2K's file system will be even slower than NTFS. Thus, the never-ending upgrade spiral continues—you'll need new hardware to properly implement Win2K.

Q: My company used Windows 95 machines in its NT network because of their easy-to-use faxing functionality. Our new machines run Win98, and we can't fax from these systems. Do you have any suggestions?

Win98 doesn't support faxing. However, you can install the Win95 Exchange client on your Win98 machines and use Win95's fax options.

Q: Can I triple-boot Windows NT, DOS, and Windows 9x directly from the boot.ini file?

You can use third-party software solutions or the following Microsoft-supported method to triple-boot your system. I recommend running FAT16 on all your disk volumes on a triple-booting machine.

  1. Install MS-DOS.
  2. Install NT.
  3. Save bootsect.dos. This system file is usually hidden and has read-only attributes. Boot DOS or NT, and remove bootsect.dos' read-only attributes at a command prompt by typing
    attrib ­r ­h ­s
  4. At a command prompt, copy the DOS boot sector by typing
    copy c:\bootsect.dos c:\bootsect.sav
  5. Boot DOS, and install Win9x.
  6. Repair the boot sector for the NT installation. This repair creates a new bootsect.dos file for the Win9x installation.
  7. Repeat step 4 with the Win9x bootsect.dos file.
  8. Rename the Win9x bootsect.dos file as bootsect.w40.
  9. Rename the Win9x bootsect.sav as bootsect.dos.
  10. Remove the boot.ini file's read-only attributes.
  11. Use any text editor to modify boot.ini (I prefer the command-line program Edit). Open boot.ini, and add the following commands to the OS section:
    c:\bootsect.dos="MS-DOS v6.22" /win95dos
    c:\bootsect.w40="Windows 95/98" /win95

The next time you boot NT, you'll have the additional choices of Win9x and MS-DOS 6.22. You must include the new switches, /win95dos and /win95, so NT Startup acts as the Win9x-boot process.

Q: I installed tweak.ui on Windows 95 machines and enabled the Clear last user at logon feature in an effort to increase security. To my amazement, I discovered that I can easily gain access to the desktop without logging onto the domain controller. How do I fix this problem?

A bug in Win9x causes this problem. You can bypass Win9x security if you enable the Require validation by network for Windows access and Clear last user at logon policies. You can bypass the Require validation by network for Windows access restriction by entering a nonexistent domain name in the Domain text box on the logon dialog box. The system will prompt you for a local logon, and you simply press Esc.

Microsoft developed a hotfix for this problem. For more information about this hotfix, go to support/supportnet/default.asp.

Q: If I dual-boot Windows NT and Windows 98, can I use the same swap space to minimize the amount of disk space the two OSs use?

To accomplish this setup, you need to configure NT's pagefile.sys and Win98's paging file. The following steps walk you through the NT and Win98 configuration:

  1. Boot NT.
  2. Click Change in the Virtual Memory dialog box on the Performance tab of the System applet in Control Panel.
  3. Select the paging file drive, and set the Initial Size (MB) and the Maximum Size (MB) to the same value.
  4. Click OK, and the system will prompt you to reboot.
  5. Reboot into Win98.
  6. In the Virtual Memory dialog box on the Performance tab of the System applet in Control Panel, select the Let me specify my own virtual memory settings option, and enter the same minimum and maximum settings that you entered for pagefile.sys.
  7. Reboot Win98, and add the following section to the system.ini file:
    PagingDrive=<pagefile.sys drive>:
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