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I have an old PC with Windows 2000 that I want to reanimate. Each time I start the PC I see a dialog box "Windows Installer","Installation wird vorbereitet." (Preparing installation).

I can cancel that installation and work with that PC. But I don't know what installation was pending. There is a more severe problem: I cannot install or uninstall any other software since I get this hanging dialog again. It lasts forever taking no CPU time.

How can I cleanup the pending installations registry to make misexec usable again?

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The event log will generally tell you what product caused the self repair.

Msi self repair in windows's event viewer

To find information about this product, try this procedure:

  • In the image above the GUID for the product that caused the repair is marked. Copy this GUID and open regedit.exe
  • Navigate to: HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall
  • Search for the GUID you found in the event log
  • If you find a match, check the details that show up in the right pane as illustrated below (the images don't match, they are for different products but the concept should be clear):

The ARP details for the product that caused the self repair

  • Try to run the Uninstall from the add/remove programs applet and see if the uninstall completes.
  • If the uninstall completes you might be done, but if it fails to uninstall the normal procedure is to use the MSICUU2 tool and erase the MSI from its internal database (deprecated tool). I suppose you may have removed a different product that didn't cause the repair?
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Googling for "msiexec cleanup tool" the first result appears to be relevant. Of particular note, it mentions that the cleanup tool which had been available in the past has been withdrawn. I recall having used it successfully a number of times in the past but no longer have a copy of it. You may still be able to find it elsewhere with a bit of searching.

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I found the MSICUU2 tool. But this did not help. The problem persists. – harper Apr 29 '11 at 12:08
The MSICUU2 tool and its associated msizap.exe are deprecated, unsupported and outdated. Microsoft recommends that they never be used. There are too many incompatibilities with newer versions of Windows. – Stein Åsmul Nov 4 '14 at 15:13

Look for MSIZAP.exe. This will get rid of the related MSI registry keys.

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