VS 2005 SP1 Installation Nightmare :-( … and how to wake up

Visual Studio 2005 SP1As you probably know, long awaited Visual Studio 2005 SP1 is out.

However, installation of this giant (400+ Mb) update is far from easy, and it is not guaranteed to succeed, at least at first run.

  1. You need to have a LOT free space on your system drive: at least 3 Gb
  2. Make sure that you have enough patience – it can take between 10 minutes and 1,5 hour
  3. If you do not use C++ portion of Visual Studio, deinstall it before installation of SP1 – it can save a lot of installation time.
  4. Deinstall Web Application Project if you have it installed.
  5. Deinstall Visual Studio 2005 Web Deployment Projects if you have it installed.
  6. Deinstall Visual Studio 2005 SP1 beta

Finally, you can speed up installation process by:

Disabling Patch Cache

Create CMD file with following content:
reg export HKLMSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindowsInstaller installer.reg
reg add HKLMSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindowsInstaller /v MaxPatchCacheSize /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
net stop msiserver
start /wait VS80sp1-KB926601-X86-ENU.exe
reg delete HKLMSoftwarePoliciesMicrosoftWindowsInstaller /v MaxPatchCacheSize /f
reg import installer.reg
net stop msiserver
del /q installer.reg 2>nul

and save it in folder where SP1 is. Run it – it should cut down installation time significantly.

Ok, you succeeded to do all above, and installation is failing. What next?

Error 1718

Let assume that your operating system is XP SP2. If you got during installation this error:

Error 1718. File was rejected by digital signature policy

try recipe from this location:

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/925336 – this helped with installation on two locations where it failed previously.

I have Windows Server 2003 SP1 and unfortunately, neither of solutions (disable patch cache or KB925336) helped 🙁

I though that memory upgrade will help, so I added 1Gb to total of 2Gb – no luck.

You can also try to:

Disable SAFER check for local administrators

– Note (if exist) previous value of PolicyScope at:


– Set this value (or create it as DWORD if does not exist) to 1

– Run net stop msiserver

– Try SP1 install

– Revert PolicyScope to previous value / delete it after installation.

(this helped on two other Windows 2003 SP1 machines; again, not on mine)

Finally, I decided to:

Slipstream SP1 into Visual Studio 2005 and reinstall it

There are couple steps here:

Make Network Installation

Create network administrative installation from your VS 2005 DVD (assuming that E: is DVD and location where you want installation \dvesicpublicVisualStudio2005SP1):

msiexec.exe /a E:vsvs_setup.msi TARGETDIR=\dvesicpublicVisualStudio2005SP1 /L*vx install.log

I did this all on same machine, using mounted ISO image on a virtual drive and unpacking it at network location on same machine – it took over 2 hours to create network install

Unpack the Patch

Original EXE file is just wrapper around MS Patch file. You can unpack it using some unzip utility (or Total Commander) or by executing:

VS80sp1-KB926601-X86-ENU.exe /extract .

Patch Network Install

Finally, do the patching of installation:

msiexec.exe /a \dvesicpublicVisualStudio2005SP1vs_setup.msi /p VS80sp1-KB926601-X86-ENU.msp /L*vx patch.log

Reinstall Visual Studio 2005 SP1

I hope that at least some of this will help you too.

Reference links:





Update 12th May 2007

There is update availabile which will hopefully sort this problems out on easy way.


4 thoughts on “VS 2005 SP1 Installation Nightmare :-( … and how to wake up”

  1. KB925336 helped me, on 2003 SP2. Actually, after this the .exe file would throw exception when ran, but extracting the .exe and running .msp file finally did it.

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