MS Agent and XP SP2 -- a poll



Winguy
07-10-2005, 01:31 AM
At the site http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/dev/code/TryMSAgent.asp an
animated character is supposed to fly in and actually speak over your
computer speakers, with bird lips moving as Peedy speaks. Additionally,
balloon text appears as the "Agent" speaks. For XP users, there's a link at
the top right of the page at http://microsoft.com/msagent to obtain SAPI
4.01a stuff that is supposed to maybe be necessary to make Agent characters
actually speak instead of just displaying baloon text.

What I want to know is how many XP SP2 "FULLY AND 100% TOTALLY UPDATED"
(others need not apply, thank you!) readers of this message actually get to
hear Peedy speak and see lip movement as the Agent speaks? How many only get
to see the balloon text but do not get to hear Peedy speak and do not see
the bird lips move? If it does fail, how about after trying to install that
SAPI 4.01a stuff, does Peedy still refuse to speak?

If you're not able to hear speech from that website link, then if you try to
install the SAPI 4.01a stuff (carefully note the computer time when you do
that) and then immediately look near the very end of your
"&windir%\setupapi.log" do you see entries similar to:

[2005/06/22 21:26:52 548.1] <--- here's the computer time when the log
started, search upwards for it.
#-198 Command line processed: "C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\Local
Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\CH012B8T\spchapi[1].exe"
#E361 An unsigned or incorrectly signed file
"c:\temp\ixp000.tmp\spchapi.inf" will be installed (Policy=Ignore). Error
1168: Element not found.
#-024 Copying file "C:\TEMP\IXP000.TMP\speech.dll" to
"C:\WINNT\speech\speech.dll".
#E361 An unsigned or incorrectly signed file "C:\TEMP\IXP000.TMP\speech.dll"
will be installed (Policy=Ignore). Error 0xe000022f: The third-party INF
does not contain digital signature information.

and so on? I'm asking because I've brought this issue to Microsoft's
attention and a tech there has been able to duplicate the problem, but I'd
like to know both how many FULLY UPDATED XP S2 users are and are not having
this problem that keeps Agent characters from speaking? What kind of errors
are occurring and being recorded in the log if you try to apply the SAPI
4.01a stuff? TIA

Mark L. Ferguson
07-10-2005, 01:31 AM
Peedy is not a default character, nor is speech a default install. Users can choose to "Install on Demand" for IE options.
(Merlin.asc is part of XP)

There is a new feature in SP2 that does "Manage Add-ons" (tools menu) This, and other available security settings could impact Agent
abilities.

--
Mark L. Ferguson
FAQ for Windows Antispy http://www.geocities.com/marfer_mvp/FAQ_MSantispy.htm
"Winguy" <NoSpam@Wanted.com> wrote in message news:_sOdndIrx9SMoSffRVn-1A@comcast.com...
> At the site http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/dev/code/TryMSAgent.asp an animated character is supposed to fly in and actually
> speak over your computer speakers, with bird lips moving as Peedy speaks. Additionally, balloon text appears as the "Agent"
> speaks. For XP users, there's a link at the top right of the page at http://microsoft.com/msagent to obtain SAPI 4.01a stuff that
> is supposed to maybe be necessary to make Agent characters actually speak instead of just displaying baloon text.
>
> What I want to know is how many XP SP2 "FULLY AND 100% TOTALLY UPDATED" (others need not apply, thank you!) readers of this
> message actually get to hear Peedy speak and see lip movement as the Agent speaks? How many only get to see the balloon text but
> do not get to hear Peedy speak and do not see the bird lips move? If it does fail, how about after trying to install that SAPI
> 4.01a stuff, does Peedy still refuse to speak?
>
> If you're not able to hear speech from that website link, then if you try to install the SAPI 4.01a stuff (carefully note the
> computer time when you do that) and then immediately look near the very end of your "&windir%\setupapi.log" do you see entries
> similar to:
>
> [2005/06/22 21:26:52 548.1] <--- here's the computer time when the log started, search upwards for it.
> #-198 Command line processed: "C:\Documents and Settings\Administrator\Local Settings\Temporary Internet
> Files\Content.IE5\CH012B8T\spchapi[1].exe"
> #E361 An unsigned or incorrectly signed file "c:\temp\ixp000.tmp\spchapi.inf" will be installed (Policy=Ignore). Error 1168:
> Element not found.
> #-024 Copying file "C:\TEMP\IXP000.TMP\speech.dll" to "C:\WINNT\speech\speech.dll".
> #E361 An unsigned or incorrectly signed file "C:\TEMP\IXP000.TMP\speech.dll" will be installed (Policy=Ignore). Error 0xe000022f:
> The third-party INF does not contain digital signature information.
>
> and so on? I'm asking because I've brought this issue to Microsoft's attention and a tech there has been able to duplicate the
> problem, but I'd like to know both how many FULLY UPDATED XP S2 users are and are not having this problem that keeps Agent
> characters from speaking? What kind of errors are occurring and being recorded in the log if you try to apply the SAPI 4.01a
> stuff? TIA
>

Winguy
07-10-2005, 01:31 AM
"Mark L. Ferguson" <marfer_mvpREMOVE@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:u516kiAeFHA.3328@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
> Peedy is not a default character, nor is speech a default install. Users
> can choose to "Install on Demand" for IE options.

That's for downloading characters and engines via a webpage (which now
results in a security warning via KB890046 as of 14-JUN-05 security update).
Characters downloaded via webpages do not have a .ACS filename extension,
those are installed "by default" in the "%windir%\msagent\chars\" folder
(v2.0) do. There is no particular default character, true, but the Peedy,
Merlin, Genie, and Robby characters are installed into that directory by
default with a clean install of XP. As for the speech engines, I might be
wrong (but it doesn't matter since this all has nothing whatsoever to do
with the poll and examination of installation error issues in the
"%windir%\setupapi.log" file that this topic is meant to conduct) but I
think the SAPI 4.0 and *Microsoft* owned components do indeed come
preinstalled with a clean install of XP (but XP needs an upgrade of the SAPI
component to v4.01a, see the below next link). But the pre-installed (if it
is) SAPI 4.0 engine that comes with a clean install of XP is broken and
requires the below link for SAPI v4.01a.

But I just checked yesterday on a fully Microsoft updated XP-Home that came
preinstalled on a Compaq and Agent characters would not speak although the
SAPI engine was installed, and updating to SAPI 4.01a still would not allow
the Agent charactrs to speak. Unproven (so far) rumor is that an update
broke SAPI 4.x speech synthesis and recognition, although SAPI 5 works (but
Agent characters can not use SAPI 5.

"Have the Microsoft Agent characters on your computer running the Windows XP
operating system stopped talking to you?"
http://www.microsoft.com/msagent

"Note, you do not need to install these core components if you are using one
of the Microsoft Windows XP, Windows 2000 or Windows Me operating systems.
The Microsoft Agent core components are already installed on your computer."
http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/downloads/user.asp


> (Merlin.asc is part of XP)

Ok, but the Agent characters themselves have nothing much to do beyond them
using SAPI 4.x for speech and lip sync purposes. The XP Agent characters all
work if one is content to have nothing *but* animation, animation sound
effects except for speech and recognition, and balloon text.

> There is a new feature in SP2 that does "Manage Add-ons" (tools menu)
> This, and other available security settings could impact Agent abilities.

Would you please tell me xactly how to access that tool?!

Anyway, the problem in XP seems to be all the errors that get logged in the
"%windir%\setupapi.log" when one tries to use the
"http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/downloads/user.asp" page to install just
about anything at all (excepting ONLY the TTS3000 series of engines). That's
the real and only non-sidetracking purpose of this topic, too, as I am
curious to know if the errors are isolated occurences or if they happen on
EVERY fully (via MS Updates) updated XP system. In other words, are Agent
speech and recognition installations failing for every XP user who tries to
install the components, or not?

Steve B.
07-10-2005, 01:31 AM
On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 21:35:28 -0700, "Winguy" <NoSpam@Wanted.com>
wrote:

>What I want to know is how many XP SP2 "FULLY AND 100% TOTALLY UPDATED"
>(others need not apply, thank you!) readers of this message actually get to
>hear Peedy speak and see lip movement as the Agent speaks? How many only get
>to see the balloon text but do not get to hear Peedy speak and do not see
>the bird lips move? If it does fail, how about after trying to install that
>SAPI 4.01a stuff, does Peedy still refuse to speak?
>

I am fully updated and he doesn not speak to me. He is kind of cute
eating crackers but, alas, is silent.

Steve B.

Winguy
07-10-2005, 01:31 AM
"Steve B." <none@none.com> wrote in message
news:6jtlb1lanu5hms7esj7bkhekq2i8u8e7kr@4ax.com...
> On Wed, 22 Jun 2005 21:35:28 -0700, "Winguy" <NoSpam@Wanted.com>
> wrote:
>
>>What I want to know is how many XP SP2 "FULLY AND 100% TOTALLY UPDATED"
>>(others need not apply, thank you!) readers of this message actually get
>>to
>>hear Peedy speak and see lip movement as the Agent speaks? How many only
>>get
>>to see the balloon text but do not get to hear Peedy speak and do not see
>>the bird lips move? If it does fail, how about after trying to install
>>that
>>SAPI 4.01a stuff, does Peedy still refuse to speak?
>>
>
> I am fully updated and he doesn not speak to me. He is kind of cute
> eating crackers but, alas, is silent.
>
> Steve B.

I'm honestly sorry to hear that speech and lip sync doesn't work when
visiting the http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/dev/code/TryMSAgent.asp demo.
I'd rather it have been a problem unique to my own XP installation.

I'd like to get more poll results into this topic, both before a downloading
of everything (except TTS3000 series engines, which just work for some
reason) available at the http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/downloads/user.asp
page -- and after having done all those downloads. This poll is just out of
personal curiosity about public issue impact, it's not at all to slam or to
pressure MS in any way. In fact: kuddos all over the place to MS, because I
know for a fact that they are at this very moment investigating the
apparently XP-universal problem with the SAPI 4.x components (and I imagine
they are no doubt just a little annoyed about having to revisit an old
technology). I'm very positively impressed with MS's response on the issue.
Although most of the related "%windior%\setupapi.log" log entries complain
about lack of signatures, and installations fail very silently except for
those log entries, I think the logs do show a few other issues beyond just
signatures. But, it will sure be nice to have Agent characters speaking in
XP again! This poll might bring a surprise and discovery that NOT all fully
updated XP users have SAPI 4.x broken, although I kind of doubt that will be
the case. I think all fully updated XP users who respond to this poll will
report speech failure at the above demo link. :(

Winguy
07-10-2005, 01:32 AM
I did find a friend who has a "virgin XP SP2" but fully updated (including
KB890046) system, but who has never downloaded anything at all from the
http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/downloads/user.asp page. The Peedy
character does speak and has lip movement. But that was the only one, all my
other friends that have XP are also reporting failure with Peedy speech at
the http://www.microsoft.com/msagent/dev/code/TryMSAgent.asp page. I've no
idea why it works for just one of my friends.

Anyway, MS can duplicate it and is working on it. And since there's been
only one (but thank you, Steve!) "on topic" response to this poll request,
this topic is no longer on my watch list.

artificially.intelligent@gmail.com
07-10-2005, 01:35 AM
http://www.sirseek.com uses Microsoft Agent Technology (character
Merlin the web wizard) for reading details of web directory sites and
the queries performed.


MS Agent and XP SP2 -- a poll