For the past week or so, I’ve been having trouble with running Messenger where I could when a buddy was typing and I could send text, but could not receive. I figured it was something funky with the current project we’re working on, so I uninstalled and went back to 6.0 which had the same problem.
I know that Messenger uses host IE browser controls for much of the dynamic content, so I dug a little deeper and found some other similar applications were also busted (like System Restore and Windows Help Center). (It was a little disconcerting that System Restore doesn’t seem to have a command-line alternative. If you somehow honk your IE installation, System Restore won’t be of any use.)
My home machines have all been upgraded to Windows XP Service Pack 2, so I went so far as to uninstall, then reinstall it. Even after that sequence, the problem remained.
I noticed that in the About box, the version number and product ID were blank which is really odd. But, it was the right clue that helped me search for the ultimate solution.
The IEFix utility site revealed the problem, pointing to a topic on WinXPTutor.com that listed several symptoms caused by some IE components that were not registered (or became unregistered at some point). A quick re-registration of mshtmled.dll, jscript.dll, and mshtml.dll solved the problem!
Now to figure out what caused this mess. Hopefully it wasn’t something from my current project…