Error Message: A Previous Program Installation Was Never Completed

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Article ID: 221863 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q221863
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SYMPTOMS

When you attempt to install Internet Explorer, you may receive the following error message:
Windows Update Setup

A previous program installation was never completed. You need to restart your computer to complete that installation before running Internet Explorer Setup. Setup will now close.

CAUSE

This error message can occur if Windows was not restarted after installing or updating files that were in use by Windows.

For example, some program installations or updates need to replace files that are currently in use by Windows. Some files cannot be replaced while Windows is running. Windows must be restarted so that these files can be updated during the initial startup of Windows before they are loaded into memory.

Internet Explorer detects that these operations are pending and cannot be installed until these operations have been completed.

RESOLUTION

To resolve this issue, click OK, and then restart Windows. After Windows has restarted, run Internet Explorer Setup again. If you receive the error message again, click OK, and then restart Windows. After Windows has restarted, run Internet Explorer Setup again.

Note that restarting Windows may not resolve the issue. You may need to perform the appropriate procedure below.

Windows 95, Microsoft Windows 98, and Windows Millennium Edition (Me)

Rename the Wininit.ini file, restart the computer, and then run Internet Explorer Setup again. To rename the Wininit.ini file, follow these steps:
  1. Exit Windows by clicking Start, clicking Shutdown, and then clicking Restart in MS-DOS mode.
  2. From DOS, run wininit.exe, and then press ENTER.
  3. Type Exit and let Windows start backup.
If that does not work, then try the following steps.
  1. Click Start, click Find (or Search), and then click Files or Folders.
  2. In the Named box, type wininit.ini.
  3. In the Look in box, click Local Hard Drives.
  4. Click Find Now.
  5. Right-click the Wininit.ini file, and then click Rename.
  6. Type Wininit.nin, and then press ENTER.
  7. Close the Find window.

Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756 How to back up and restore the registry in Windows

Locate the following registry key:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager
Delete any PendingFileRenameOperations values in this key.

You may also need to check for and remove pending file rename operations in the following registry keys:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnceEx

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunServicesOnce

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\RunOnce
NOTE: If the problem is still not resolved, check for the existence of old installation files in your TEMP or TMP folders, check for the existence of a folder named "$!$!$!$!" in the root folder, or try emptying the Temporary Internet Files folder.

To Delete Temporary Files

  1. Double-click My Computer, double-click drive C, double-click the Windows folder, and then double-click the Temp folder.
  2. Press CTRL+A to select all the files in the folder.
  3. Press the DELETE key.
  4. Close My Computer.

To Delete Temporary Internet Files

  1. On the desktop, right-click Internet Explorer, and then click Properties.
  2. Under Temporary Internet Files, click Delete Files.
  3. Click to select the Delete Offline Content check box, and then click OK.
  4. Close Internet properties.
Internet Explorer only forces a reboot in a live install case. If an administrator is writing a script to chain together a number of installs, they should use the quiet-mode Setup (/Q:A). This does not check for pending file renames before installing (the error noted above does not occur).

STATUS

This behavior is by design.

Properties

Article ID: 221863 - Last Review: January 24, 2007 - Revision: 3.3
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.01 128-Bit Edition
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0 128-Bit Edition
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.03 for Windows NT 3.51
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.01 128-Bit Edition
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0 128-Bit Edition
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.02
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 1
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.5 Service Pack 2
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.0 for UNIX
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.01
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0 for Macintosh
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 4.5 for Macintosh
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 for Macintosh
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 5.0
  • Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0, when used with:
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Datacenter Server
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
    • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0 Standard Edition
    • Microsoft Windows NT Server 4.0, Terminal Server Edition
    • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation 4.0 Developer Edition
    • Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 98 Second Edition
    • Microsoft Windows 98 Standard Edition
Keywords: 
kberrmsg kbprb kbsetup KB221863

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