peterleemaxwell 16:39 02 Feb 2003

Hi after a previous request for help went unanswered I am still trying to find a solution
to my running problem. (O.S.X.P.) I had noticed
using 'SiSoft Sandra' my "Win.ini" file only contained "(MCIAVI) Default Vidio=Window" Where
as a friend of mine, his m/c had a whole list of things starting with ";for 16 bit app support"
and a lot more. Could anybody explain in simple terms what this file does?, or if corrupted what effect this has? and if it needs to be repaired how to do it? Hope I get an answer.

  bremner 16:43 02 Feb 2003

Have you actually looked at your win.ini file or are you only reporting what Sandra has said.

  peterleemaxwell 16:48 02 Feb 2003

I am only looking at what was reported using the software. That was the same as what my friend had done as well.

  bremner 16:51 02 Feb 2003

Sandra has a reputation for inaccuracy.

Follow this path to have a look at your win.ini file.

Start > Run then type msconfig. Click OK. Choose the win.ini tab and you will see all the lines.

  Gongoozler 16:58 02 Feb 2003

--- or if you want to see the full contents of the win.ini file, then it's Start > Run then type sysedit and click OK, but don't change anything unless you know what you are doing!!

  peterleemaxwell 17:25 02 Feb 2003

Thanks for your very quick responce.
Did as you said and thanks all that was in the box. Very little. (As I said my friend had a vey long list, does yours contain a long list?)
I tried your method and I was stuck with the error box I had when I first requested help a long time ago. The error was (and seems to be difficult) "16 Bit MS-DOS SUBSYSTEM D\windows\system32\config.NT The system file is not suitable for running MS-DOS and microsoft Windows applications. Choose 'Close' to terminate the application'. I could just re-install but everything else is working well.
Hope this helps and doesn't put you off advice.

  Gongoozler 20:11 02 Feb 2003

Sorry peterleemaxwell. Once again I jumped in without reading the initial posting first. sysedit is a Windows 9x utility.

Have you seen this site for a description of a cause of your error message in xp. click here

  temp003 04:19 03 Feb 2003

I can't help your specific problem. Only to say that the win.ini file, together with the system.ini file, were the origins of the current Windows registry. They are just text files, and are still retained mainly to give support to legacy 16-bit applications (Windows 95 onwards are 32-bit systems), although some new applications apparently still use the win.ini file.

To answer your question, the file acts like the Windows registry for old 16-bit applications and any other application that chooses to use the win.ini file to store configuration information for the application.

The default win.ini file installed in XP is small, but not as small as yours. The default file should read (probably like your friend's):

; for 16-bit app support



[mci extensions]




[MCI Extensions.BAK] (which is followed by a list of media file names)

Other applications which use the win.ini file will write further sections and entries into the file. It seems you're missing the default entries.

Whether this has anything to do with your problem is another question. However, the config.nt file is used by Windows XP to initialise the MS-DOS environment.

Better try the suggestions in Gongoozler's link first (not easy, I know I wouldn't be up to the task). For the original MS article, click here

  peterleemaxwell 11:20 03 Feb 2003

Thanks for your input. I will study the M.S. page. Looks like the Win.ini files are important and could be a problem. I do not know how the entries went missing in the first place as I have no technical experience, and would not have deleted or even attempted it. What can happen if I do alter the Win.ini files? and what part do they play in the running of the O.S?. I know this is a lot of questions and I hope you don't mind. Is there a site on the internet that explains what a file such as Win.ini/Boot.ini/System.ini files do?

  temp003 13:22 03 Feb 2003

I'm afraid the little I know about win.ini I've told you almost all of it.

Windows XP itself does not use the win.ini file to operate. It may be processed at startup (which can be disabled), but the OS does not depend on it to run.

As I said, certain applications may use the win.ini file to store its configuration, install/uninstall information etc. If you mess it up, those applications may not run properly. But since you have only one section with one entry, it doesn't look as though it's got much use anyway at the moment.

I doubt adding the default XP entries back will solve your problem just like that. And I certainly do not know enough about it to tell you you can safely alter it. I also know that some entries in win.ini are mapped to other Windows registry keys (there's a key called IniFileMapping which tells you where they are mapped to, under HKEY Local Machine \Software \MicrosoftWindows NT \Current Version).

All this is what I can remember from reading a book on the XP registry, and there wasn't much.

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