OS/2 2.11 Service Pack problems

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The following excerpts were taken from an internal IBM memo regarding OS/2 2.11 Service Pack problems. These excerpts suggest workarounds/solutions.

Subject: OS/2 2.1 Service Pack Problems

I am sending this note to inform you of some OS/2 2.1 Service Pack problems. I will send a follow-up note with more details about these issues.

Listed below are the areas where the Service Pack has caused problems.

The XR06200.XRF file on diskette 13 contains the list of problems that the Service Pack fixes.

This information is a compilation of our experiences and appends to the OS2 Forums. If we know of a fix to a problem, it is included below the problem description. This is not meant to be a comprehensive list of the SP problems.

Before installing, read the XR06200.AVA file. It contains information about things to do before installing (i.e. CHKDSK /F to boot drive). It also describes the different ways the SP can be installed (i.e. to all partitions, from CD-ROM etc...). Other installation information is contained in the README.INS file on diskette 1 of the SP diskettes. Information not specific to installation is in the README file on diskette 1.

Problem: Multiple Desktops

If the system's Object Open Behavior behavior is set to CREATE new window, the system will create multiple views of your desktop (folder) at each boot. Note that it doesn't create a second desktop, it simply open a second view of the desktop.

FIX: Change the Object open behavior to Display Existing Window. You can change this setting for either the desktop ONLY or for the whole system, either will fix the above problem. To change it only for the desktop folder:

  1. Click on the desktop with the right mouse arrow.
  2. Click on OPEN -> Settings
  3. Select the Window Page of the Desktop Settings folder
  4. Change the Object open behavior to Display existing window.

NOTE: This will cause customized entries to the desktop pop-up menu to display existing programs rather than create new instances of programs. OR to change it for the whole system:

  1. Open the OS2 System folder
  2. Open the System Setup folder
  3. Open the System settings object.
  4. Select the Window page.
  5. Change the Object open behavior to Display existing window.

Problem: WIN-OS2 Failure

When starting WIN-OS2 seamless or full screen, the system hangs. This seems to happen if the Windows files are located on an extended partition, and you choose to only update the OS/2 boot partition when prompted by the SP install program. It may be possible to fix this by reapplying the SP and specifying both (or all) partitions.

Problem: Can't copy the OS/2 INI files.

The SP adds the SYSTEM file attribute to the OS2.INI and OS2SYS.INI files. This prevents them from being copied via a normal copy command.

FIX: Use XCOPY with the /T and /R parameters. Example: XCOPY C:\OS2\OS2.INI C:\OS2\OS2INI.BAK /T /R

Problem: S3 Drivers

Miscellaneous problems resulting from trying to install the drivers from the S3 Driver diskettes (i.e. using DSPINSTL).


Prior to installing the GA Service Pack, Selectively install the system back to VGA. Then, after applying the SP, use Selective Install to upgrade it to the SVGA resolutions. Support for S3 cards is built into the 2.1 Service Pack. Change the resolution from System object in the System Setup folder.

Problem: Adaptec AHA152X.ADD driver problem

Some systems that use the Adaptec SCSI card (including those with the Sound Blaster 16 SCSI-2 with a Toshiba 3401B CD drive) will not boot after installing the service pack. There are some work arounds for this problem. It appears that the driver shipped with the SP adds support for more devices, but breaks some systems entirely. There are two possible fixes for the problem:


Add the parameter /!SN to the CONFIG.SYS line referencing AHA152X.ADD. If this doesn't help... Use the AHA152X.ADD driver from the 2.1 GA code.

Problem: DosCopy error installing PostScript Printer Driver

When installing the Postscript printer support for the 4029 printer, the installation program reports a DosCopy error installing the Windows portion of the code. This appears only to happen with the diskette versions.

Miscellaneous Information

SP ONLY Updates Components Already on the System:

The BETA SP updated the system adding everything back to the system. The GA Service Pack will only update what is already installed, it doesn't add any items or features. If there is something you want which is not already installed, you must Selectively Install it using your GA version, then reapply the SP. Preferably, this should be done prior to installing the SP.


A problem with the Gamma beta was the Swapper file didn't shrink. It now shrinks, but very slowly. Also, it doesn't always reduce as far as it did with 2.1 GA.

Disk Labels:

There has been some confusion as to the diskette labeling format for printer driver, display driver, and MMPM/2 diskettes. This resulted from an incorrect LABELS file. For the 3.5" diskette version: Diskettes 14, 15, and 16 are Printer Driver disks 1,2, and 3. Diskettes 17, 18, and 19 are Display Driver disks 1,2, and 3. Diskettes 20 and 21 are MMPM/2 disks 1 and 2. For the 5.25" diskette version: Diskettes 16, 17, 18, and 19 are Printer Driver disks 1, 2, 3, 100Diskettes 16, 17, 18, and 19 are Printer Driver disks 1, 2, 3, and 4. Diskettes 20, 21, and 22 are Display Driver disks 1, 2, and 3. Diskettes 23, 24, and 25 are MMPM/2 disks 1, 2, and 3.

Icon Hashing: On some systems, some icons on the desktop and in folders remain crosshatched after the program/folder/object has been closed.

Subject: 2.1 ServicePak bug with LAN Drives

Please pass this along to anyone who may be interested...

FYI.... The 2.1 ServicePak introduces a bug related to opening folders under the Drives object for LAN-attached disks. When you open Drives, then a LAN Drive, and then any folder within that drive, the folder will briefly appear then disappear. You'll have to double-click on the folder at least one more time to open the folder. Once the folder opens successfully, future attempts to open it will work on the first try. Well, at least until you shutdown. After I rebooted, the problem came back.

I've submitted a problem report to defect support. If I hear anything back, I'll let you know so you can pass the info along to your customers should they have this problem.

The following was taken from CompuServe.

  1. 173797 S2/Install Questions

09-Mar-94 11:42:37 Sb: Safe Proc for 2.11 CSD Fm: James A. Helzer 71127,2175 To: all

Haven't seen this posted (but it may have been). I submit this simply because we have had sporadic problems (inconsistent) and I've seen other reported.

Here's the story: in response to some problems, I've been told by IBM that there is apparently a problem which may occur when installing the 2.11 CSD (XR06200) when using the "Boot" procedure which calls for a boot from Diskette 1. Even though it completes with a message "Corrective service completed successfully.", it may, in fact, fail to correctly update all modules. This can result in some problems.

Thus, IBM told us that on any further installations:

1. If the machine is currently at 2.1: a. Be sure, before upgrading, to do a CHKDSK x: /F ('x' is usally C) using a boot from the BASE operating diskettes for 2.1. b. To perform the Corrective Service, DO NOT reboot from A:. Instead, bring the machine up normally under 2.1, Open an OS/2 Window, put Service Diskette #1 in A:, and then:


and take the full service options. This is important, because apparently the boot method is not updating some module or another even though it reports complete. IBM says that A:\SERVICE does not have that problem.

2. For any machine which has already been updated to 2.11 using the "BOOT" method, and which experiences problems, IBM says: from the Desktop, open an OS/2 Window, put the Service Diskette #1 in A: and then run:


and take the full service options even if it says everything is OK. Then follow instructions for what diskettes to put in the diskette reader. This is a very quick process and is said to find any missing modules and get them properly installed.

Hope this is helpful. JAH