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Problems installing WinFax with Windows XP

This article will help you perform an install or reinstall of  WinFax PRO 10 with Windows XP Home edition or Windows XP Professional with Service Pack 2 or Service Pack 3.  All versions of WinFax PRO will install under Windows XP (all service packs).

With the support of WinFax Tools and this article, you can accomplish an install of WinFax PRO 10 with Windows XP.  This article is not for Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, or any 64 bit Windows operating system including 64 bit Windows XP.  WinFax PRO is not compatible with these editions of Windows.  

NOTE: If you are using a Windows XP computer that is connected to the internet, We recommend you upgrade your Windows XP to the latest service pack 3, so you have the latest security fixes in Windows XP.

The North American (English) WinFax PRO 10 installation CD-ROM is available in a few different installation releases, they are:

  • WinFax PRO 10.0 (old Symantec logo in upper case on setup screen)
  • WinFax PRO 10.01 (old Symantec logo in upper case on setup screen)
  • WinFax PRO 10.02 (yellow-black logo, white Symantec lowercase on setup screen)
  • WinFax PRO 10.03 (yellow-black logo, white Symantec lowercase on setup screen)

Note: WinFax PRO 10.04 is not available on a CD-ROM installation. 10.04 is available as an update file to version 10.03 only. If you have purchased a WinFax PRO 10.04 CD ROM, or a 10.03 WinFax PRO CD ROM with the 10.04 update on it, it is likely you are using a counterfeit CD ROM.

You should first determine what version you are installing, as there are some known issues with specific versions that you should be aware of.  This can be accomplished by checking the box packaging, the version is listed on the bar code at the bottom of the box or on the envelope sleeve. You can also check by looking at the installation dates on the installation CD-ROM.  You can easily determine if you have WinFax version 10.02 or 10.03 by looking at the Symantec logo in the Setup screen during the installation process.  A white Symantec logo is version 10.0 or 10.01, a yellow/black Symantec logo is version 10.02 or 10.03.

Note: Versions 10.02 and 10.03 versions were modified to handle a new Windows XP feature called “Fast User Switching“, however, older versions 10.0 and 10.01 will still install and function under Windows XP but not support the fast user switching feature.

Preparing the installation

1. Log in as an administrator

If not already done so, log in to Windows XP as an administrator, or an account with administrator access. If you have Windows XP fast user switching enabled, make sure no other users are active with programs running in the background.  Your Windows XP may automatically log the default user, so if you are not sure if your account has administrator access, you can start WinFax Tools and click the WinFax Info button. This will display if you are logged in as an administrator.

2. Close all active programs

Close all active programs that you can.  WinFax has external links (or “hooks”) to several programs, like ACT! 4.0,2000,2004 and Microsoft Office 97-2003.  We recommend you close all programs when you install WinFax, especially your Outlook e-mail. In most cases you can leave your anti-virus turned on, but if you know how to temporarily turn it off, do so during installation if you are sure your using an ORIGINAL (legitimate) Symantec WinFax PRO CD ROM.

3. Insert WinFax CD-ROM

Insert your WinFax CD ROM.  If you have the CD auto-start turned on, you’ll be automatically presented with a WinFax PRO selection screen with several options.  Close and exit this screen, since we’ll be launching the installation setup program directly. We don’t need any additional programs active during the installation of WinFax.

4. Manually start the installation setup.exe file

Click Start, Run, click Browse and locate the WinFax folder on the installation CD-ROM , and locate and select the SETUP.EXE in this folder, click Open and OK to start the installation.

If everything goes well, you should see the WinFax setup dialog box like the graphics shown above, and a progress bar that should reach 100%. The setup should prompt you with the Welcome message with an option to Continue.  Now, go ahead and complete the installation.

If you’re not so lucky, you’ll be presented with a blank screen and setup does not even start.  Don’t try starting Setup.exe again, because if it is stuck, running it again will only cause multiple copies of the same program open, and if you continue trying, you’ll end up with non-responding system (which you’ll eventually have to reboot)

InstallShield fails to start, clicking Setup.exe does nothing

If you get no setup dialog box, and nothing appears to happen when you double-click SETUP.EXE, then you may have a problem with the InstallShield install process. WinFax PRO 10 uses a third-party install and uninstall utility called “InstallShield version 5.5” to perform the install and uninstall processes.  Its possible your InstallShield 5.5 Engine files are corrupt, out-dated, or another program or service that is conflicting with the InstallShield 5.5 startup process.

 Try the following steps, proceeding to the next suggestion if the setup does not start.

  1. Reboot the computer and try starting Windows XP again, but this time press & hold down the SHIFT key while Windows is booting.  The SHIFT key being depressed during bootup prevents all startup programs from running.  Make sure all programs are closed, especially Outlook and Outlook Express. Now try reinstalling WinFax.
  2. If that did not help, try to copy the contents of the “WinFax” folder on the installation CD-ROM to a temporary location on the hard drive (like C:\WinFaxInstallImage), then reboot the computer and execute “setup.exe” from that temporary location you just copied the files from the CD ROM to.
  3. Try temporarily lowering your screen resolution & color depth, to 1024×768 or lower and 256 colors or lower. Yes, as strange as it seems this sometimes can cause InstallShield setup to fail to start properly.
  4. If this does not help,  read this document and update InstallShield 6 Engine files and delete any temporary files as mentioned in this technical document. Follow the steps for version 6.0 InstallShield engine. InstallShield Troubleshooting
  5. If you tried all the above and you still cannot start the install, we recommend you consult with a technician at the WinFax Forums (subscription required) and they can provide specific instructions you can use with the help of WinFax Tools.