When you use the Microsoft Office 97 Developer Edition Tools (ODE Tools)
Setup Wizard to create a setup image for a run-time application, you may
receive the following error message when you run your Setup program on
Couldn't find file C:\Windows\System\System.mdw
NOTE: The path to System.mdw may be different in your error message; it
will display the path to the Windows System folder on your computer.
When you created the setup image, you clicked to select the Workgroup and
Run-Time check boxes when you let the Wizard create a command-line for your
application's shortcut, but you did not include a workgroup information
file with your application.
Proceed through the remaining screens of the Setup Wizard and create a new setup image for your application.
Method 2: Including a Workgroup Information File with Your Setup
Open your application's setup options in the Setup Wizard.
In the Add The Files screen in the Setup Wizard, click the Add button, and then add a workgroup information file.
NOTE: If you try to add the workgroup file to which you are currently
joined, you receive the following errors when the Setup Wizard tries to
create your setup image:
The creation of your custom Setup program was not completed successfully.
This error occurs because the workgroup file is in use by you. Use the
Workgroup Administrator to temporarily join another workgroup file
before you run the Setup Wizard, or include a different workgroup file
in your setup image.
Proceed through the remaining screens of the Setup Wizard and create a
new setup image for your application.
Method 3: Modifying Your Application's Shortcut
After your run-time application is installed, you can modify the shortcut
to your application so that it looks for the workgroup information file in
the correct location.
In Microsoft Windows 95 or Microsoft Windows NT version 4.0
Click the Start button on the taskbar, point to Settings, and then click Taskbar.
In the Taskbar Properties dialog box, click the Start Menu Programs
tab, and then click the Advanced button.
Locate your application's folder and the application shortcut in
Using the right mouse button, click the shortcut, and then click
Properties on the shortcut menu that appears.
In the Properties dialog box, click the Shortcut tab.
Modify the command line in the Target box so that the /wrkgrp option
is followed by the correct path to the System.mdw file. For example,
change this portion of the command line
/wrkgrp "C:\My Application\System.mdw"
Note that you must place quotation marks around the path and file
name if it contains any spaces.
Click OK in the Properties dialog box, and then close Windows
Explorer and the Taskbar Properties dialog box.
In Microsoft Windows NT version 3.51
Open your application group in Program Manager.
Select your application's icon by clicking it once.
On the File menu, click Properties.
In the Program Item Properties dialog box, modify the command line in
the Command Line box so that the /wrkgrp option is followed by the
correct path to the System.mdw file. For example, change this portion
of the command line
/wrkgrp "C:\My Application\System.mdw"
Click OK in the Program Item Properties dialog box.
Method 4: Moving the Workgroup Information File
After your application is installed, the shortcut looks for the System.mdw
file in the Windows System folder by default. Your Setup program installed
the System.mdw in your application's main folder. If you copy or move the
System.mdw file to the Windows System folder, the shortcut will work
correctly as is.
The Workgroup Administrator, Wrkgadm.exe, is included with your run-time
application by the Setup Wizard. If you do not include a workgroup
information file (called System.mdw by default) with your setup files, the
Workgroup Administrator automatically creates one when you run Setup for
your application. Workgroup Administrator creates the System.mdw file in
the folder where your application is installed. However, the Setup Wizard
incorrectly sets the /wrkgrp command-line option to look for System.mdw in
the Windows System folder when it creates your application's shortcut. This
only happens when you indicate to the Setup Wizard that you want to include
the Workgroup command-line option in your application's shortcut, but you
do not include your own workgroup information file.
Steps to Reproduce Problem
Start the ODE Tools Setup Wizard.
In the first screen of the Setup Wizard, click "Create a new set of
setup options for my application's custom Setup program," and then click
In the "Add the files" screen of the Setup Wizard, click the Add button,
and then add the sample database Northwind.mdb. Click to select the "Set
as Application's Main File" check box, and then click Next.
In the Add The Shortcuts screen of the Setup Wizard, click the Add
button. The Setup Wizard automatically creates a new shortcut for
Northwind.mdb. Type Northwind Test in the Description box for the new
Click the Database Shortcut Properties tab, and then click Workgroup and
Run-Time under Database Command-Line Options.
Click Next, answer Yes when prompted to include the Microsoft Access
run-time executable file, and then click OK when prompted about
including a workgroup information file.
Click Next until you get to the final screen in the Setup Wizard, "Where
do you want the Setup Wizard to copy the files for your custom Setup
program?". Select a folder for the setup files, and click to select a
check box for the kind of distribution disks you want to create.
Click Finish and let the Setup Wizard create your setup image. You do
not need to save the current Setup template when prompted.
After the Setup Wizard finishes, run Setup for this custom application
on a computer that does not have Microsoft Access installed. Then start
the Northwind Test application and note that you receive the error
message mentioned in the "Symptoms" section of this article.