Sunday, August 26, 2018

Quicken Won't Download Transactions

I've been having a recurring problem for the past year with Quicken refusing to download recent instructions. I've spent *DAYS* trying to solve this problem. Tech support from Quicken and the bank were not helpful. In desperation, I built a completely new data file. This worked for a couple of months, and then the problem came back. I've seen the problem on both Quicken 2014 and Quicken 2017, so I don't think the problem is tied to the version of Quicken.


If you try to Update while you have transactions that you haven't accepted, then Quicken doesn't download anything, but DOES change the start date for "interesting" transactions. This prevents new transactions from downloading.


  1. Accept the transactions from ALL of the accounts for this financial institution.
    For example, if you have Checking, Savings, and Overdraft for a particular financial institution, then the accounts will transactions to reconcile will show a red flag in the list of Accounts on the left side of the screen. Go to each of those, click on "Downloaded Transactions" underneath the register, and click Accept All.
  2. Look at the date of the last downloaded transaction in your register and remember that date.
  3. On the Quicken menu, select Tools | Online Center.
  4. While holding down Ctrl and Alt on your keyboard, click Contact Info with your mouse in the Online Center window. You should see this window:

  5. In the Account droplist, select the account you need to update.
  6. Note the date next to the Reset DTSTART button. It most likely has today's date. In my case, I took this screenshot on 8/26/2018.
  7. Click Reset DTSTART and you'll see this window:

  8. Change the date next to Change to be the date you took note of in Step #2.
  9. (Note that you can't check the box to the left of Reset DTSTART, so it's not important.)
  10. Click OK.
  11. Click Refresh.
  12. Click Update/Send... in the top right.
  13. Make sure the relevant financial institution is selected.
  14. Click Update Now.
Good luck!

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Intel NUC Won't Install Windows 10 Fall Creators Update

I've spent many hours trying to install the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update (16299) on my Intel NUC D54250WYK. The symptom was that the update would appear to proceed correctly, reboot, get most of the way through processing the update, reboot again, and return to 15063. When I looked at the updates history, it would say Restart Required, but the restart would never succeed.

The other symptom I saw was that Windows would routinely hang trying to do Shutdown or Restart.

The final solution was to uninstall the following drivers:

  • Bluetooth
  • HD Audio
  • Trusted Platform

Once I did that, Shutdown and Restart started working reliably and the Fall Creators Update installed without incident.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Installing a Code Signing Certificate, 2016

This is an update to my earlier article about the same subject. This process is much easier than it used to be.

This post was edited on August 1, 2019 to reflect minor changes in the process.

Install a certificate from Sectigo (was Comodo)

  1. Use IE11 for your browser for everything related to the purchase. Don't use Edge or Chrome.
  2. Use Sectigo (formerly Comodo) to buy your Code Signing Cert. They're still the cheapest provider, especially if you go through Tucows and buy a three year certificate.
  3. When filling out the information during the purchase process:
    • Make SURE you click the checkbox to allow the private cert to be exported, or you will be very unhappy.
    • You want a SHA2 certificate, which will do SHA1 and SHA256 signing.
  4. Your private key is generated when you initiate the order, but it is NOT stored in your Cert Store. Therefore, you must start and complete your order on the same machine with the same browser.
  5. After your identity is confirmed, you will receive an email from Sectigo with a subject like ORDER #12345678 - Your Code Signing Certificate is ready!
  6. Install the new certificate by clicking the link in the email. Again, use IE11. When it's done, you'll see something like this:

  7. At this point, your new certificate has been automatically added to your Cert Store.
  8. Verify the installation. Go to Control Panel / Internet Options / Content, click Certificates, select your new certificate, and click View in the bottom right. The certificate will probably be on the Personal page. Make sure you are looking at your new certificate and not the old. You can tell the difference by the expiration date.
  9. Make sure you have the private key. Again on the Certificate page, at the end of the information, right under the "Valid from" dates, you should see something that says "You have a private key that corresponds to this certificate." If this isn't there, you may not have checked the box during the signup process as described in Step 3 above. You will probably need to get the certificate reissued (this is free with Sectigo).
  10. Remove your old certificate. If you are renewing an existing certificate, then keeping the old certificates installed isn't usually useful, and having multiple certificates will break SIGNTOOL if signtool is searching the certificate store. Go to Control Panel / Internet Options / Content, click Certificates, select your old certificate, and click Remove. The old certificate will probably be on the Personal page.

Export the PFX file

A PFX file can be used by many third party utilities. One advantage is that PFX files can be created without a password, which is handy in automated builds if you are using SIGNTOOL. You can see the complete process with pretty pictures at Acmetek. Here's the abridged version:
  1. Go back to the Certificates Page on Internet Options.
  2. Select your new certificate
  3. Click Export...
  4. Click Next.
  5. Select "Yes, export the private key."
  6. Click Next.
  7. Select "Personal Information Exchange - PKCS #12 (.PFX)." (If this option is grayed out, then your private key was not imported).
  8. Check the box labeled "Include all certificates in the certification path if possible." THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT.
  9. You may want to read about the new Windows 10 option, Enable certificate privacy.
  10. Click Next.
  11. Check the Password box.
  12. Provide a password and the confirmation.
  13. Click Next.
  14. Enter a filename.
  15. Click Next.
  16. Click Finish.
  17. If you want to remove the password from the PFX file, use openssl as described in this post from the Wayback Machine. Quick summary:
    openssl pkcs12 -in mycert.pfx -out tmpmycert.pem -nodes
    openssl pkcs12 -export -out mycert2.pfx -in tmpmycert.pem

Sign your code!

If you need some hints on this, see my earlier post.

As of January 1, 2016, all Windows executables destined for Windows 7 or later must be signed with SHA256. If you still support Windows XP and Vista, then you must also dual sign with SHA1. For details, see this excellent article.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Remote Debugging Visual C++ 2015

This describes how to configure your system to do remote debugging when you are using Visual Studio 2015. There is no installer for the debug DLLs, so you need to work around this problem.

Among other things, these instructions solve this error message:

The program can't start because ucrtbased.dll is missing from your computer.

These instructions take extra steps to handle the case where you are doing DLL builds instead of static linking MFC and CRT.

Note: These instructions should not be used for release versions of MFC and CRT. Those files can be installed with the files in C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\VC\redist\1033.

1. Install the Remote Debug Tools

The version you install depends on the bitness of Windows. Most people will therefore want to install the 64-bit version. It will debug both 32-bit and 64-bit applications.
  • Click on Tools for Visual Studio 2015 on the left.
  • Click Remote Tools for Visual Studio 2015.
  • Choose the desired version. The section on top is for Visual Studio Update 2. The second section is for other versions of Visual Studio 2015.
  • Select the desired bitness
  • Click Download
  • Run the installer

2. Create a shortcut to the Remote Debug tool

Next create a link to the remote debugger on your desktop. Below is the command I used. All security is disabled because I'm the only user on my local network. Note the useful "/anyuser" parameter that is very helpful when your test VMs are configured with generic user accounts.

"C:\Program Files\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\Common7\IDE\Remote Debugger\x64\msvsmon.exe" /noauth /anyuser  /nosecuritywarn /timeout 10000

3. Copy the MFC and CRT DLL's to your application's Debug directory.

There is no installer for the debug DLLs, so you need to work around this problem.

Let's say your application is in:


Copy the CRT and MFC files as follows. Change MYARCH to be x64 if you are debugging a 64-bit application. This depends on the bitness of your application, not the bitness of Windows.

set MYDEBUG=C:\Projects\MyApp\Debug
set MYARCH=x86

copy "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\VC\redist\debug_nonredist\%MYARCH%\Microsoft.VC140.DebugMFC" %MYDEBUG%

copy "C:\Program Files (x86)\Microsoft Visual Studio 14.0\VC\redist\debug_nonredist\%MYARCH%\Microsoft.VC140.DebugCRT" %MYDEBUG%

4. Copy ucrtbased.dll into your application's Debug directory

The Universal CRT DLL is from the Windows SDK. It is not in the Visual Studio directory. This is a new file required as of Visual Studio 2015. Make sure you set MYDEBUG and MYARCH as shown in the last step.

copy "C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\%MYARCH%\ucrt\ucrtbased.dll" %MYDEBUG%

Note that the discussion on MSDN about ucrtbased.dll being part of Windows 10 is wrong.

5. Define a network share

Create a network share to your Debug directory. It's a lot easier than copying files around. Let's assume you shared your entire C drive. You can share read-only.

On the VM, mount it as a standard drive. I like to use K:.

Finally, in Visual Studio, in the debugger properties, set the application location to use the network share as the path.

6. Run with remote debugging

Start the remote debugger msvcmon.exe on the VM using the shortcut you created in Step 2.

7. Run the debugger in Visual Studio

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Fix for "ICWrapper.dll failed to register" when installing QuickBooks

QuickBooks, how many ways do I hate you? Let me count the ways.

Every version of QuickBooks I've ever installed has had horrible install bugs that made installation difficult or impossible. For five years I couldn't print anything because QuickBooks didn't support printing in 64-bit Windows. The newest version, QuickBooks Pro 2015, has yet another problem.

The error is:

ICWrapper.dll failed to register

If you search the web, you will find many people who are unable to install QuickBooks because of this error. The pathetic part is that the solution is easy. Install the VC90 redistributable (the 32-bit version). It can be found at:

Intuit, are you listening?

Here's a really really easy solution for Intuit that will save your customers endless frustration. Try installing QuickBooks on a Windows clean machine. That's a version of Windows that's just been installed with nothing else. No Microsoft Office. No Visual Studio. Especially no Chrome and no Firefox. Just the latest security updates.

Once you've installed QuickBooks (assuming that works), try testing things like printing.

This would trivially have found the problem on Windows 8.1.

Here's how to debug this particular problem. Perform the following steps:
  1. RegSvr32 ICWrapper.dll. You'll get an error about an error in the side-by-side configuration.
  2. Open the DLL in Visual Studio. The resource section should appear.
  3. Open RT_MANIFEST.
  4. Notice that it wants vc90, version 21022.
  5. Now look in %WINDIR%\WinSxS
  6. Notice that Windows 8.1 includes 30729.1, not 21022.8. Therefore it won't run, especially since your manifest doesn't allow later versions.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Intel NUC - Can't re-enter BIOS through F2

This blog entry is about how I solved the problem where I was no longer able to enter the BIOS using F2 on my Intel NUC D54250WYK.

The problem started when I upgraded my BIOS from 22 to 25 and enabled SecureBoot. Once I did that, the NUC would boot directly into Windows without showing the NUC boot logo nor the F2/F7 prompt.

This is not an uncommon problem. In my case, it took a combination of solutions to solve the problem.

First, the fact that the NUC logo wasn't showing was a clue that the NUC BIOS wasn't detecting the monitor properly. Apparently there's some sort of detection for the monitor to support 1024x768. This detection seems flaky. I tried the DisplayPort connector on two separate monitors without success.

The solution for this problem was to use an Apple mini-DisplayPort to DVI adapter to go from mini-DisplayPort on the NUC to DVI on the monitor. Once I connected the monitor in this manner, the boot screen showed up immediately. I got the idea from this article, which recommended mini-DisplayPort to HDMI.

The 1024x768 detection is particularly problematic if you are connecting the NUC to a TV or through a receiver. In these cases, you may need to connect to a "real" computer monitor.

The next problem was the SecureBoot prevented the BIOS from showing. To solve this it was necessary to enter Maintenance Mode, as described at

Intel NUC - Three flashes and won't boot

This blog entry is about how I solved the problem where my Intel NUC D54250WYK wouldn't boot after I upgraded my BIOS from 22 to 25. (I should have paid to attention to the note that said, "Don't install this if you don't need it." However, I was installing Windows 8.1 and I wanted to make sure I had the latest fixes.)

The symptom was that the NUC would turn on, would flash three times, wait a few seconds, flash three times, and then turn off.

I was running the NUC with 16GB of DDR3 1866 (PC3 14900) Laptop Memory. This memory is faster than most users run, but recent versions of the BIOS are documented as supporting this speed of RAM.

I tried taking out one of the DIMMs, which had worked for me in the past. However, this didn't work this time. (If you try this, make sure you take out the correct DIMM. The NUC will operate on one DIMM, but this configuration is only supported for one of the two slots.)

Eventually I just left the NUC alone for half an hour in its reboot cycle. It eventually booted successfully and the problem did not come back.

Followup, Oct 2014: My system would crash every couple of weeks after I wrote this article. I finally ran Windows memory tests, which failed. I changed the NUC BIOS to slow down the memory and it worked fine after that.