Wednesday, August 17, 2005


Virtual PC/Windows CE Emulator

Out of the blue, well, I was too busy to take notice, I started getting this message when I booted windows:

'Virtual PC/Windows CE Emulator' will cause Windows to become unstable. Windows has prevented these drivers from loading. Click here for more details.

Irritated by it this morning I have determined to find out the cause and remove it. So clicked, which took me to:;en-us;891667 and read the info. Not a great deal of help, only gave a method for removing the message, not the problem.

Doing a websearch about problems with XP2 and drivers eventually threw up these two pages: , and listed in this last one are several files, so a search for each in turn is called for. Got a hit on that.

So the further investigation revealed that 'Physical Address Extension' comes in with Service Pack 2 (SP2) and a file VPCAppSv.sys is the cause. It must have been left over from something I have installed, used and removed as part of the day to day life of using a Windows machine.

So I find there are several ways to get rid of the error message.

  1. Fiddle with 'Physical Address Extension' i.e. remove /PAE from boot.ini or add /NOPAE if /PAE is not already there.
  2. Add a /NoExecute=AlwaysOff to boot.ini, this also has the effect of switching off 'Data Execution Prevention', don't think I like the sound of that, tried it, and removed it. Curiously though the machine appeared to boot and run slightly faster.
  3. Finally, just remove the offending driver, VPCAppSv.sys, as I am not using it. I like that one.

So, after deleting the offending file I find the message has gone away. Now my interest is piqued, what does this VPCAppSv.sys do? Another websearch is called for, and what do I find: , but a page that includes details about how to uninstall it! It would appear this file came in as part of Windows CE 5.0 and the uninstallation of that is not completely clean.

where is the boot.ini file locate in the local PC?

I did the search and now file found

Please help
Great, thanks for that post
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