[updated 24th January 2009 with new download location for x64 systems]
[updated 31st December 2009 with Windows 7 information]
I have been asked this question several times and finally dug into the system to make it work. N.B. while this will work with Windows 7 the "agent" will have a pink background. Given the age of this technology it is unlikely to be fixed.
The Office Assistant relies on some "agent" technologies. To fix this we need to install the agent technologies and then copy a DLL across. Since I was playing around it is possible that there is an extra step or two that is not actually needed, but since this is a small process and simple to do I don't think it will do any harm. What is more, I was not about to rebuild a system, load Vista and Office 2003 just to see if I could remove a 10 second step :-)
- Download the MSAgent technology from http://www.microsoft.com/msagent - select the CORE files, so for me that was this item - Download the Microsoft Agent core components (395 KB exe) Download the MSAgent2.exe file from http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyID=E11BF712-7862-45BA-826D-44AE3A11836F&displaylang=en
- Run the download, accepting the UAC prompt (the security prompt)
- - select the option "This program installed correctly"
- Open an elevated command prompt - have a look at How to start an administrative (or elevated) command prompt and tell if you got it right (in Vista) if you are unsure how to do this. The window should have the title "Administrator: Command Prompt" if you have it right.
- type the following commands into the prompt (each line will probably start with "c:\windows\system32>" - don't worry about this (if you are using a x64 (64-bit) version of Windows replace "system32" with "system" in the commands below)
copy c:\windows\msagent\agentdpv.dll c:\windows\system32
- That is it. If you get error messages check the command prompt has the title as per #4 and follow the instructions on how to get an elevated command prompt. Also, check that you have a space betbween the regsvr32 command and the rest of the command.
How I diagnosed the problem and fixed it - only read if you want to know more - technical stuff!!
This is a simple example of using the great tools provided by Microsoft. The stages I took
- Download Process Monitor from http://www.microsoft.com/technet/sysinternals/ProcessesAndThreads/processmonitor.mspx
- Run Process Monitor and for every application on the list (except winword.exe), right click on it and select Exclude by Process Name
- Clear the history by pressing Ctrl+X
- Now do the "thing" that is causing the problem, so in my case, opening the gallery for the office assistant
- To stop the logging going on forever, stop the logging once you have reproduced the problem (Ctrl+E)
- Now go down the list and look for things that failed - if you see a number of retries, or in this case, an attempt to open a particular file in every directory on the path then you know you have your suspect
- Open an elevated command prompt and type the following:
- CD C:\
- DIR /S /A <filename> - so DIR /S /A agentdpv.dll
- You will see several hits, but ignore the ones in places like c:\windows\system32\winsxs or other strange locations - c:\windows\msagent seemed like a good option to me.
- We now need to register the file:
- regsvr32 <filename> - so regsvr32 c:\windows\msagent\agentdpv.dll
- Finally either add c:\windows\msagent to the path or you can try the trick I did of copying it to c:\windows\system32
Mon, Jul 23 2007 12:02 AM