This article was previously published under Q183479
IMPORTANT: This article contains information about modifying the registry. Before you modify the registry, make sure to back it up and make sure that you understand how to restore the registry if a problem occurs. For information about how to back up, restore, and edit the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
256986 Description of the Microsoft Windows Registry
After you install a program, you may receive the following error message:
The following system files have been replaced with older versions by a program you recently ran. These files are currently in use and cannot be automatically repaired. Windows may not run correctly until you exit and restart Windows so that these files can be automatically repaired. C:\WINDOWS\SYSTEM\DDEML.DLL
Note that the file name listed in this error message may be different on your computer. After you restart your computer, you may receive the error message again. Also, you may be unable to resolve this issue even if you rename the listed file and then extract a new copy of the file from the original installation media.
This issue can occur if the program you install replaces a system file on your computer but does not properly update the system file information stored on your computer or in your registry.
To resolve this issue, update the system file information on your computer. To do so, try the following methods in the following order:
Rename the Ddeml.dll file (or whichever file is listed in the error message) in the Windows\System folder to a .old file extension. To do this, follow these steps:
In Windows 95, restart your computer, press the F8 key when you see the "Starting Windows 95" message, and then choose Safe Mode Command Prompt Only from the Startup menu.
In Windows 98, press and hold down the CTRL key after your computer completes the Power On Self Test (POST), and then choose Command Prompt Only from the Startup menu. For more information about Windows 98 startup, see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
ARTICLE-ID: 178548 TITLE : No "Starting Windows 98" Message at Startup
Rename the Ddeml.dll file in the Windows\System folder to Ddeml.old by typing the following line and then pressing ENTER
ren <drive>:\<windows>\system\Ddeml.dll Ddeml.old
where <drive> is the drive letter on which the Windows folder is located, and <windows> is the name of the folder in which Windows is installed. For example:
ren c:\windows\system\ Ddeml.dll Ddeml.old
NOTE: This procedure assumes you do not have a file named Ddeml.old. If you do have a file by this name, use a file name extension that is not currently in use.
Copy the Ddeml.dll file from the Windows\Sysbckup folder to the Windows\System folder. To do so, type the following lines, pressing ENTER after each line:
Restart your computer, and then test to determine if the issue has been resolved. If the issue has been resolved, do not continue with the remaining steps in this article. If the issue is not resolved, continue to the next section of this article.
WARNING: If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. Microsoft cannot guarantee that you can solve problems that result from using Registry Editor incorrectly. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.
Rename the Ddeml.dll file (or whichever file is listed in the error message) in the Windows\System folder and the Windows\Sysbckup folder to a .xxx file extension. For information about how to rename a file, click Start, click Help, click the Index tab, type "renaming" (without quotation marks), and then double-click the "Renaming files" topic.
Extract a new copy of the Ddeml.dll file (or whichever file is listed in the error message) from your original Windows 95 or Windows 98 disks or CD-ROM to the Windows\System folder. In Windows 95, the Ddeml.dll file is in the following locations:
The Win95_03.cab cabinet file on the Windows 95 CD-ROM.
The Win95_04.cab cabinet file on the Windows 95 OEM Service Release 2 (OSR2) CD-ROM.
The Win95_04.cab cabinet file on disk 4 of the original Windows 95 DMF floppy disks.
The Win95_05.cab cabinet file on disk 5 of the original Windows 95 non-DMF floppy disks.
In Windows 98, use the System File Checker tool to extract the Ddeml.dll file.
For information about how to extract a file, please see the following article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
ARTICLE-ID: 129605 TITLE : How to Extract Original Compressed Windows Files
Copy the file you extracted into the Windows\Sysbckup folder, and then restart your computer.
Delete the Ddeml.dll (or whichever file is listed in the error message) value from the following registry key: