Microsoft have just released the latest version of the ACT Toolkit which allows corporations to scan their production computers for application that may have compatibility issues when running Windows 7. The new version now allows users to rate the compatibility of application for 32bit and 64bit application separately. With the x64 version of Windows 7 now the dominant (see here and here) operating system version this tools is going to be really useful for enterprise looking to make the 64 bit jump.
You may also notice that this update has also dropped the “RC” tag from Windows 7 reports section that was previously in version 5.5 which you could previously only do via a SQL command.
This version also resolves an issue with the DLL file called “logger.dll” that is used for the User Account Control (UAC) evaluator. The problem was that other programs like Sophos Anti-Virus also use the same name for their DLL’s and thus caused an error “The procedure entry point LoggerStart could not be located in the dynamic link library logger.dll” error message (see below). They have renamed this DLL on the Agent to “ACTEventLogger.dll” instead so the conflict has now been resolved.
This version also comes with the demo Stock Viewer application (see below) that has so often been used by Microsoft demonstrate how to use SHIM’s to remediate problem apps. This is a nice addition as you can practice you SHIM creating skills on this program first before attempting to fix more challenging production application.
Microsoft is currently rollout a Live Wave 4 which is introducing some significant upgrades to their online services. This video showcases very nicely some of the new features that are coming and how it will benefit normal users.
For about the past 12 months Microsoft have been releasing a number of solutions on the http://support.microsoft.com/fixit web site. This web site could be used for some to find a solution to their problem and then simple click on a Fix It button which ran a self contained program that fixed that particular issues.
Microsoft now released an update to this service called Microsoft Fixit Center Online. You can downloads and installs the Microsoft Fixit Center application from the site which is used to find and troubleshoot a list common issues. This is a software + services solution that means also integrates with online support portal for all your computers.
After you have installed the program and created an account with the Fixit web site you can run specific trouble-shooter to fix the problem you are having with your computer.
You then have the option of either Detect and Fix or just Detect and fix later..
You can then see you computer report on line with the history of the trouble-shooters that have been run on that computer…
If you then click on the “Manage this computer” link you can change the icon assigned to the device and give it a custom Display Name.
If you click on the “Device Information” link on the left side you then get some standard device information on the hardware specs of the computer.
and a comprehensive list of all the software installed on the computer.
Also provided on the web site is the “Find Solutions” page which is a one stop shop for troubleshooting all the common support issues with various Microsoft product. If you can find the solution to your problem you can even use this page to submit a support request and then you can keep track of the issues under the “View support requests” section.
I would rely like to see a remote assistance feature some what like Live Mesh and the ability to run all the trouble-shooters without clicking on multiple buttons. While the product at the moment is only beta and only offers reactive solutions problems I think has real potential to be very useful for every IT enthusiast that has to support one or more computers…