Archive for the ‘Computers and Internet’ Category

Contents of .pdf files not being indexed in Windows 8/8.1

August 10, 2014 1 comment


I broke Windows Search indexing because I didn’t give the SYSTEM user full permission on the folders I wanted indexed.


We’ve been using a Fujitsu ScanSnap S1300i to scan all incoming paperwork (e.g. receipts, bills) since October 2012.  The ScanSnap includes ABBY FineReader OCR functionality (not ABBY FineReader itself but instead ScanSnap links to ABBY .dll’s to do the actual OCR task).  When the “Searchable PDF” option is used, ABBY OCR’s the .pdf and embeds the searchable text.

Copy and paste of selected text in PDF (

A collection of searchable-PDFs is only useful if something indexes them and you can search that index.  For most Windows users, the built-in Windows Search feature more than handles the task.

A few months ago I had profiled Windows boot performance to find out why initial-logon was slow only to find out Windows Search itself appeared to be aggressively reading the disk so I culled the list of indexed folders to lessen the load.  At the same time I rearranged folders to optimize disk usage and to simplify backups.  But around that time I noticed that searching on keywords that previously returned .pdf results now instead returned “No items match your search”.


If at this point I had tried searching for known PDFs in other locations (outside of my D:\Scans directory) I might have found out they were being returned.  However since the vast majority of all my PDFs are within D:\Scans I didn’t even bother checking.  Since other document types turned up in search results I assumed it was just a PDF-indexing problem.

Troubleshooting steps I tried (which might help you)

1) Double-checked I hadn’t removed my scan folder from Indexing Options. I also tried removing and re-adding that folder.  I clicked the “delete and rebuild index” button between some changes thinking it’d make a difference.

It didn't, it just made the whole process take longer.

2) Ran the Windows Search troubleshooter– Control Panel > search “windows search” and clicked “Troubleshooting: Find and fix problems with Windows Search”.  I checked the “Files don’t appear in search results” checkbox though I now suspect this is just a CEIP checkbox.  I always got “Issue not present” on each of the issues checked, including “Incorrect permissions on Windows Search directories”, ha!

3) Checked and changed the HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.pdf\PersistentHandler registry value per these steps from Adobe: .  I spent a while on this step (and the next few) because I had installed the guilty version of Adobe Acrobat Reader before and I had even installed the Adobe PDF iFilter (v11.0.01) before I learned that Windows 8 includes PDF indexing out of the box. (It’s now uninstalled because the built-in Windows PDF indexing is just fine)

4) Reset Windows Search settings.  Setting REG_SZ value SetupCompletedSuccessfully to “0” at HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows Search\ reset all “Index these locations” folders in Windows Search.  Re-adding the scan directory still didn’t help get those PDFs indexed.  While I was at it I configured Windows Search to index more aggressively since I was spending time waiting for index rebuilds.

5) Checked CLSIDs and .dll registration for .pdf indexing.  (or if “Filter Description” isn’t “Reader Search Handler” and you don’t have the Adobe PDF iFilter installed)


To do this:

a) Stop the Windows Search service.  Open services.msc, find “Windows Search” and right-click it to stop.

b) Default value at HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\.pdf\PersistentHandler should be {1AA9BF05-9A97-48c1-BA28-D9DCE795E93C}

c) Default value at HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{1AA9BF05-9A97-48c1-BA28-D9DCE795E93C}\PersistentAddinsRegistered\{89BCB740-6119-101A-BCB7-00DD010655AF} should be {6C337B26-3E38-4F98-813B-FBA18BAB64F5}

d) If you’re running Windows 8x:

  • Default value at HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{6C337B26-3E38-4F98-813B-FBA18BAB64F5}\InProcServer32 should be %systemroot%\system32\glcndFilter.dll
  • In an administrative command prompt, run: regsvr32 %systemroot%\system32\glcndFilter.dll  and confirm you get “DllRegisterServer in C:\WINDOWS\system32\glcndFilter.dll succeeded.

d) If you’re running Windows 10:

  • Default value at HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{6C337B26-3E38-4F98-813B-FBA18BAB64F5}\InProcServer32 should be %systemroot%\system32\Windows.Data.Pdf.dll

f) Restart the Windows Search service

g) If you made any changes to the registry values, rebuild your search index


6) Checked the contents of the Windows Search ESE database (windows.edb) to verify if this is an issue with the indexer not seeing or erroring-out on indexing of the files in question or an issue of storing the indexed values into the database.  Windows.edb is a standard ESE/JET Blue database.

I also reset Windows Search again (see step #4 above) and only configured it to have Windows index a few small directories, including a sub-folder of my much larger D:\scans directory just to keep indexed values to a minimum.

Then you:

  • Stop the Windows Search service (via services.msc)
  • Copy file Windows.edb found at C:\ProgramData\Microsoft\Search\Data\Applications\Windows to another location.
  • Download and run ESE Database View (note: this isn’t my file and I cannot 100% attest to its safety but at least you don’t need to elevate when running it).  Open the previously copied Windows.edb file.
  • From the drop-down, choose “SystemIndex_PropertyStore” and do a CTRL-F search for files which should be indexed.  If they show up then the file has been indexed if not, then the file hasn’t been indexed.
  • Note: if you get “0 record(s)” after selecting the “SystemIndex_PropertyStore” table, it’s possible your windows.edb file is too large or that table is too large.  My smaller windows.edb file is 232MB, but now that I’ve got Windows indexing a much larger set of files it’s now 2.4GB.  It’s possible ESEDatabaseView cannot open ESE databases over a certain size.  Still a handy utility to know about.


7) Lastly, since I didn’t see the PDF files I wanted indexed in the windows.edb database, I compared this workstation to a known-working one where PDF indexing worked.  I compared all the above HKLM\HKCR values between the two systems– no difference.  I then compared the file security permissions between two files—one file on the working system which turned up in search results and one on my busted system which didn’t.  At the same time I checked the permissions which the SearchIndexer.exe process runs


There’s the problem—SearchIndexer.exe runs as SYSTEM and I didn’t add SYSTEM to D:\Scans’s security permissions.


I quickly granted the SYSTEM user permissions on all directories I wanted indexed and then rebuilt the search database.  Very quickly thereafter I started getting the PDFs showing up in search results.

Add SYSTEM user either via the “Edit…” dialog in the folder Properties > Security tab, or run something like the following in an elevated command prompt:

icacls "D:\Scans" /grant SYSTEM:(OI)(CI)F

Additionally, in my forum-crawling for solutions, I saw that others had success with copying files into the directory again to get indexing to work.  I suspect this might work for them because Windows doesn’t use the source file’s ACL but instead rebuilds it based off the folder which might be accessible to the SearchIndexer.exe process.

Categories: Troubleshooting, Windows 8

Quicken 2011 Not Opening Last Quicken Data File (QDF) Used

August 11, 2012 Leave a comment

I recently installed Windows 8 RTM onto my laptop.  Quicken 2011 R8 successfully installed and I as able to open my most recent QDF file without any issues.  However, the next time I opened Quicken, and every time after that, it presented me with the “Select your existing data file to get started” default screen rather than re-opening the last open file:


I re-opened Quicken again but with ProcMon running.  I noticed that it was successfully reading my directory of Quicken save files but in the end it was failing to open my QDF file because it was using the wrong file name.  It had truncated it to a shorter 8.3 filename and since a file doesn’t exist by that name it fails to open it:

I don't actually keep my Quicken files at C:\Quicken, but changed it for this image to make it simpler. =)

This was a regression in behavior from running Quicken 2011 R8 in Windows 7 SP1 where I was using the same file at the same directory without any issues.

To workaround this I renamed my original QDF file from “RyanR Quicken Data.QDF” to “RyanR.QDF” so the filename was 5 characters long– less than or equal to 8.   I then re-opened Quicken, chose the renamed file, and then exited Quicken.  The next time I launched Quicken it successfully opened the last open QDF file.

From this Intuit forum thread it seems that this is a known issue with Quicken.  I just don’t know why I never saw this problem until now.

Categories: Windows 8 Tags: ,

Wacom Devices and Photoshop Pen Pressure

March 25, 2012 8 comments

9/9/2014 update: Earlier this year Wacom released updated drivers for Windows for supported PEnabled devices (the HP 2740p included) at  I’ve confirmed that in Windows 8.1 and after uninstalling (and rebooting) any existing Wacom pen driver packages (e.g. “Pen Tablet” listed n Add/Remove software) and then installing ISD_DualTouch_720-10.exe (“Enhanced Tablet Driver 7.2.0-10”) enables Photoshop pen pressure support or similar in any other application that relies on Wintab driver support.


Information below is about my HP 2740p (and possibly HP 2760p) tablet running x64 Windows 7.  Suggestions here may or may not help with your particular hardware/software configuration.

My HP 2740p tablet’s great and after the HP touchscreen firmware update (3043-35D_0C6C, 4012-FOA (14 Jul 2010) – sp49201)– to fix the issue with touch not working in certain situations usually after resuming from sleep– everything works reliably. 

Pen pressure generally always works with Windows apps like the pen input dialog, OneNote, or Windows Journal.  But getting pen pressure to work in Photoshop was a pain.  It entirely depends on which Wacom packages are installed, which versions of them, and what Wacom device drivers are being used.  If you get the combination incorrect, you’ll see a yellow exclamation icon in Photoshop’s brush Shape Dynamics pane and no pen pressure functionality:


(“Control by pen pressure requires the use of a pressure sensitive tablet”)

Once you get compatible driver packages and versions installed, Photoshop is happy and the feature works:



Wacom Dependencies

Using Dependency Walker to profile Photoshop, I found that Photoshop loads and executes code within the following Wacom files found at c:\windows\syswow64\, Pen_Tablet.dll and Wintab32.dll. The versions I have installed, from the Wacom_PenTablet_521-6a.exe package listed below, are: 5.2.1-6 and 1.0.4-3 respectively.


I haven’t tried it, but if those files aren’t present and you have a compatible Wacom Device device driver installed, Photoshop could fail to let you use Pen Pressure functionality.  Check for those files in your Windows install and if not install the Wacom_PenTablet_521-6a package.


Wacom Packages to Install

Search online for this Photoshop Pen Pressure issue and you’ll get a variety of helpful suggestions and links to different Wacom packages.  I wish this process was more deterministic but here’s what works for me (installed in this order):

9/9/2014 update:

Previously I was using (and used to work):

Here’s what certainly didn’t help:

  • Wacom Bamboo Pen and Touch – Driver 5.2.4-6(RC) for Windows 7, Vista & XP (32 & 64 bit versions) – PenTablet_5.2.4-6.exe
  • Wacom Digitizer Driver – sp51088.exe (22 Nov 2010, w/ wisdpen.sys v3.0.4.5)
  • Wacom ISD_DualTouch_701-8.exe
  • Wacom Penabled Driver Driver 7.01-8 (RC) for Penabled Tablet PCs – ISD_DualTouch_701-8.exe

Wacom Device, wisdpen.sys, and Windows Update

      Additionally, once you have a working version of the Wacom Digitizer Driver above installed, if it’s outdated, and you have your system’s Windows Update process set to search for driver updates online, Windows Update will notify for an update to the Wacom Device (HWID: ACPI\WACF00E):

WU_for_WacomDevice_20110634_IgnoreThisUpdate(the More Information link goes to a bad WinQual destination)

      If you install this driver update, it will update the

Wacom Device

      from (driver date:12/30/2009, driver version: or (driver date:5/14/2010, driver version: and updating to (driver date: 12/20/2010, driver version:  While that update works fine with Windows, it breaks pen pressure functionality in Photoshop.  If you want Pen Pressure in Photoshop,


    install this update.
      If you have installed the update already, open Device Manager (run: devmgmt.msc) and open the properties for node Human Interface Devices >

Wacom Device

      .  Switch to the “Driver” tab and click “Roll Back Driver”.  After a reboot you will be back to the old version:

roll back Wacom Device driver

(Hardware Id: ACPI\WACF00E)


Wacom Driver Differences

Here’s a neat tip for searching for Windows driver updates used by Windows Update. Go to the Microsoft Update Catalog (you will need to install an ActiveX control) and search on the hardware ID you’re interested in, e.g. ACPI\WACF00E. The x64 package for “Wacom – Input – Wacom Device” updates the driver ACPI\WACF00E which is installed to c:\windows\system32\drivers\wisdpen.sys (Wacom ISD Tablet HID MiniDriver).

Pen Pressure in Photoshop? wisdpen.sys Version wisdpen.sys Date Modified
Works 1/4/2010
Works 5/14/2010
Doesn’t Work 1/4/2011

So something changed between Wacom’s wisdpen.sys v3.0.4.1 and v3.1.1.2 to break pen pressure sensitivity in Photoshop.  I tried poking around for public exports on wisdpen.sys for clues why but none exist. I also took a look at the differences pre/post update installation of the registry for the wisdpen service at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\services\wisdpen—no differences.  And the only difference between the and driver installation file, wisdpen.inf, was adding a registry value for BaudRate at the above key.

There are some interesting string differences between the two wisdpen.sys drivers themselves, like missing DefaultPenMouse/DefaultTouchMouse entries, but no smoking gun like “DisablePhotoshopPen” and nothing actionable.  At this point, unless I write my own Wacom Digitizer driver, I’m likely grasping at straws.


If anyone has any pointers on Photoshop interaction with digitizer minidrivers, please leave a comment.

Windows Phone 7 on a Samsung Focus

November 29, 2010 Leave a comment

Notes and observations about the Samsung Focus hardware running Windows Phone 7.



The Samsung Focus uses a certain amount of electricity in order to operate.  In order to charge, the incoming rate needs to exceed the rate being consumed by the phone.  If it doesn’t then you will problems like your Samsung Focus “charging slowly”, or “not charging.”

Not all USB ports output the same amperage.  The USB spec dictates each port output 5 volts, but amperage is only guaranteed to be available up to 100 mA.  If the phone requires ~200 mA and you plug your phone into a laptop USB port outputting 100 mA, then the battery will still be drained even though the device’s battery icon shows it’s charging.  Bus-powered hubs (USB hubs on the front-side of a desktop or most USB ports on a laptop) will generally provide 100 mA.  Root hubs and self-powered hubs should be 500 mA.  Some wall chargers will output >500 mA which while they’ll charge the phone faster could damage the phone or battery—if your phone gets hot while charging this is a good indicator it’s too much amperage as it needs to dissipate a higher amount of power.

Additionally, not all USB cables are not the same.  Some thinner cables (such as those in cheap retractable micro-USB cables) might have issues carrying amperage and will start to overheat (get warm to the touch) which will increase resistance and reduce the load (increase charging times).

You can access the battery diagnostics mode on the phone to find detailed information on battery charge percentage.  In short, bring up the phone and call “##634#”.  When the next screen comes up with the ‘-‘ button on top, enter the code “*#2*#”.  The Debug Mode for Chg/Bat will have three pages.  The first page (with examples values from my device):

  • ADC
    • VBATT: ?
    • INCHG: Incoming charge (?)
      • 1: no charge
      • 51-52: plugged into the USB2.0 port on backside of desktop computer
    • THERM: ?
      • 178
    • TA (T/F): ?
      • False
    • USB (T/F): Whether the device is being charged via USB or not.
    • BAT ID:
      • 4 (no cable or not charging)
      • 5 (charging via USB cable to USB 2.0 port on backside of desktop)
  • MV
    • VBATT_MV (mV, millivolt): Battery voltage
      • On my phone, when charged to 100% and then unplugged from charger, this value went up to 4185 and then slowly dropped with some minor jumps up and down.
    • VCHG_MV (mV): ?
      • 65 mV when unplugged
      • 4677 mV when plugged into USB2.0 port on desktop
    • ICHG_MV (mV): ?
      • 8 mV when unplugged (reads 0 immediately after being unplugged)
      • 419 mV on my phone when charging via USB
    • DEG (C): temperature of the battery
      • 21 C on mine while indoors
    • Bat_PER (%): percentage of battery charge
      • 100 when battery is fully charged

Todo: determine electrical metrics (e.g. amps) used by Samsung Focus in various scenarios.

Todo: determine electrical metrics output by various charging devices.


Touch can be finicky on the Focus.

  • Sometimes doesn’t work when lying flat on a surface
    • Remedy: picking the phone up (or just moving it?) seems to generally help. Note: if the phone is being charged, some chargers will prevent the phone’s screen from working while being charged.
    • Update 4/20/2011: This should be fixed with the Samsung firmware (v2103.11.3.3) updates released in the March 2011 WP7 update. More info.
  • When being charged with certain wall chargers, touch doesn’t work but resumes when unplugged
    • Todo: determine specifics on which certain chargers are likely to do this
  • Doesn’t like to be operated when vibrating.  This can easily happen when mounted in a car on a phone arm like below and say your car vibrates when idling with the heater on.
    • CarPhoneMountArm
    • Remedy: Move the car arm to a location where the mount can rest against the dash or otherwise not be vibrating out in the open.  Wrapping your hand around the phone to operate it can also temporarily fix this, but not while you’re driving..
  • Screen surface has excess dirt/oil on it.  This can be registered as wayward presses and make the phone act wonky.
    • Remedy: Wipe the phone screen with a clean non-scratching material– like your shirt.

Performance Testing of an HTC Touch Pro (AT&T Fuze) against an HTC TyTN (Cingular 8525)

November 17, 2008 2 comments


With my previous Windows Mobile phones– Audiovox SMT5600 and an HTC TyTN (Cingular 8525)– I did not do much in the way of changing WM registry settings to try to improve WM performance or otherwise configure the device beyond basic application settings (ringers, power, other standard stuff).  This time around– with the HTC Touch Pro (AT&T Fuze)– I figured it was worth my time to see 1) how much the AT&T customizations affected device performance, 2) how much enabling Exchange email sync and running TouchFlo would affect performance, and 3) if the HTC Advanced Configuration settings I was applying were doing anything.

The following programs are available to test performance on WinCE-Windows Mobile platforms (all are free for personal use):


Here are just the results from running Spb Benchmark on my old HTC TyTN (Cingular 8525) and new HTC Touch Pro (AT&T Fuze) in various configurations:

*Y1: running programs: TouchFlo. Adv Config Cust: Perf>FSCacheSize=2MB, Perf>FSFilterCache=4096, and a few other minor settings which shouldn’t affect the tests.

*Y2: running programs: TouchFlo, ActiveSync (corp email sync). Events/Notifications on, Adv Config Cust: Perf>FSCacheSize=2MB, Perf>FSFilterCache=4096, and a few other minor settings which shouldn’t affect the tests.

*"Pocket World document open" test skipped as it Failed in all configurations even though it appears on the device as if the test is running properly.


1) AT&T Customizations which include enabling TouchFlo (as it’s not run by default in the Base ROM), don’t hurt device performance much and help in other areas.  I only ran Spb Benchark a total of three times for each configuration, so it’s possible with more runs the numbers would smooth out more and more accurately reflect the configuration.

2) Through some arrangement of the settings my phone has arrived at, I have somehow hurt file I/O in a major way.  Without digging into it more it’s hard to say how– is it Exchange email sync?  Is it the HTC Advanced Configuration changes?

3) As for how effective any HTC Advanced Configuration changes are, that’ll have to wait for another time as I didn’t want to spend too much time on this activity.

Photos and geotags: Web-albums and mapping of them

May 25, 2008 Leave a comment


While you are out taking photos, your GPS device you brought with you is keeping track of where you’ve been.  Later when you’re back at your computer, tools like GeoSetter or Microsoft Pro Photo Tools will automatically assigned each photo a location based on the time you took the photo and where on the GPS trail that time occurs or when it’s off you can manually adjust the location yourself.  After that you will have a collection of geotagged JPEGs.  


To make the most of them you want to upload them to a web-album and share with others the path (GPS track) and your photos taken along the path.  EveryTrail seems to match that feature-wise, but I’d like to be able to use services I’m already using, like Flickr and Live Maps.


Here’s what I’ve found so far:


·         Picasa works well.  The desktop software is slick for organizing your photos.  Uploading them to new or existing web-albums is seamless and mapping your geotagged photos in the web album is as easy as clicking "View Map"–  But there’s no ability to add GPX track information (so you can get a line on your map showing your path) and the map view doesn’t zoom close enough to comfortable switch between photos taken close to each other but it’s nice that the arrows above each photo on the map cycles through them based on when they were taken.  The real win is that each web-album has a “View in Google Earth” link which provides a KML container of your photos which can be used in Live Maps or Google Maps.

·         Flickr should work well.  As a photo-sharing site it’s great: the community sharing and tagging features are established and meet my needs.  Photos uploaded with geotags can be displayed with Flickr’s built-in mapping feature and existing non-tagged photos can be tagged manually through the site.  But when viewing geotagged photos through the site’s built-in mapping application, the image that pops up in the map’s photo-bar is really small and the mapping application itself is lame when compared to Live Maps or Google Maps. (plus the map view doesn’t actually seem to work in IE8)  Flickr supports KML and KML_NL feeds, but the feed will only contain photos that were uploaded geotagged already, e.g. this, rather than also showing photos geotagged through Flickr.  Also the URL used needs to be of the type else you will wind up with parsing errors from Live Maps/Google Maps when it tries to grok the photo feed.   No ability to create photo-trails and upload GPX track information.

·         Live Spaces doesn’t do anything with my geotagged photos and creating a Live Maps Collection with pushpins to my Spaces photos is tedious.  But Live Maps is cool because I can upload my GPX path directly into Live Maps and display it along with my photo pushpins. e.g.!231


The above conclusions are likely incomplete and premature so will be edited when I find better solutions or methods.