LC Answer File across Win versions

Deploying to Windows? Utilizing VB Script execution? This is the place to ask Windows-specific questions.

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jmk_phd
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LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by jmk_phd » Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:52 am

I've just experienced a programmer's worst nightmare: A client encounters an error when running a prototype standalone that had tested out fine at my end.

Admittedly, I'm a Mac user who can barely make his way in Windows, but my standalone Windows app works just fine on an old Windows Vista laptop. However, when my client running a Windows 7 PC clicks the "Load File..." button -- which simply displays an "answer file" dialog to choose the file to open -- he receives a Windows error message. (Sorry that I don't yet have the text of that error message, which I've asked him to provide and will post if helpful.)

The good news is that (thankfully) when the client tried again on a PC running Windows 10, he was able to run my app just as designed. So apparently the app works in Vista and in Windows 10, but not in Windows 7.

Have experienced Windows LC developers ever encountered this problem before? If so, is there some workaround other than to prohibit using Windows 7?

Thanks much!

jeff k

bogs
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by bogs » Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:11 am

Hm, except for it being windows 7, this sounds just like another thread that just popped up here.
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by tomBTG » Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:45 pm

Hi Jeff.

Based on the info. you provided, I would be skeptical that the problem is as broad as all Windows 7 machines. More likely, it is some specific setting, permission or scenario on your client's Windows 7 machine.

Here are some factors to consider:

Are the security settings of the Win 7 machine more rigid than on the others? I'm thinking the Win 7 machine (or its security software) doesn't trust your app.

Is the installation location on the Win 7 machine the same as on the others? For example, if your client tries to run the app from within the Downloads folder rather than installing it into Program Files, then that might set off warnings or trigger lower permissions for the app.

The details of your client's error message are probably the best clue.

Tom B.

bogs
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by bogs » Mon Dec 04, 2017 5:14 pm

bogs wrote:
Mon Dec 04, 2017 4:11 am
Hm, except for it being windows 7, this sounds just like another thread that just popped up here.
Nope, tested the same answer file code on a win7 machine that caused the error on XP, no error here on popping it up.

Tom is right, exact steps to reproduce it and any accompanying errors would be more helpful.
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by FourthWorld » Mon Dec 04, 2017 7:56 pm

bogs wrote:
Mon Dec 04, 2017 5:14 pm
exact steps to reproduce it and any accompanying errors would be more helpful.
This is true with all software. When a problem is accompanied by a consistently repeatable recipe, the developers can reproduce it, trace it, and resolve it.

Without a consistently repeatable recipe, any attempt to resolve it is reduced to guesswork.

In such cases, further diagnostics are needed to arrive at a recipe. Having the recipe is key.
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bogs
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by bogs » Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:42 am

Oh of course. I was just trying to say that it wasn't the same bug as the xp thread, which was my initial thought. If it had been the same as the xp answer file issue, I'd have suggested his signing onto that one.
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AxWald
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by AxWald » Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:10 pm

Edit: Ooops, wrong place.

This belongs to the XP version of this bug...

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jmk_phd
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Re: LC Answer File across Win versions

Post by jmk_phd » Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:24 am

Thanks to all for posting a reply.

I suspect that Tom is probably right that the problem is specific to the client's one Win7 PC, and probably had something to do with security settings. The clincher was that he subsequently disclosed that he'd had trouble before running psychological testing software on that particular machine.

Of course, Tom and Richard are right that it's necessary to have the specific error message in order to troubleshoot a problem. However, the client is "A Very Busy Man" (my sarcasm), so once he confirmed that the app worked as expected on several other PCs, he wasn’t interested in going back to do a screenshot of the error message.

BTW, as regards Tom's mention of install location, the client was insistent that my LC app save the text reports it generates to the same folder in which the app is located, just because this is the way things worked in the original version that someone wrote for him in the early 1990s using VisualBasic. I argued that macOS no longer permitted apps to write files to the Applications folder, and that at some point Windows might enforce the same restriction with respect to the Program Files directory. He compromised by letting me write files to the Documents folder on macOS, while still doing it the original way for Windows.

As you might guess, he finally discovered when running my prototype that it would not save files when run from within Program Files (although it did work when the app was run from a thumb drive). So he finally relented, allowing me to remove the “switch” routine and use specialFolderPath(“documents”) to write files irrespective of platform.

Geez, sometimes the customer is *not* always right.

jeff k

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