VirtualAcorn Technical support:
ntdll.dll

VirtualRPC doesn't run - Windows 8 and Windows 10

On a small number of machines running Windows 8 or Windows 10 double clicking on the VirtualRPC icon to run it can cause an error message, or no message and a briefly spinning timer. There can be several possible causes for this, however the most common is related to ntdll.dll. This article is not the space for a technical description of this problem, luckily solving it is (normally) very easy:

If you are using a keyboard and mouse:

  • Firstly right click on your VirtualRPC Shortcut on the Windows desktop.
  • Then click on Properties from the Windows menu which opens.
  • The VirtualRPC application Properties window will open.

If you are using a touchscreen:

  • Click on the folder icon bottom left and then select desktop from the options down the left side.
  • Press once on the VirtualRPC-xxx icon to select it
  • Then click on Properties on the toolbar
  • The VirtualRPC application Properties window will open.


Opening the Properties window using a touchscreen interface

Once the properties window is open

  • Click on the Compatibility tab.
  • The following window will open.

  • Click on the Run this Program in compatibility mode for: button.
  • Choose Windows 98 / Windows Me from the list.
  • Click on the Run this program as an administrator button
  • Click on Apply then on OK.

Now run VirtualRPC in the normal way. The product registration window should now open and you will then be able to request an unlock code.

On a tiny percentage (well under 1%) of machines the product registration window still doesn't open even after applying the compatability settings. Dealing with this is very easy, just wait an hour or so and try running VirtualRPC again. Normally VirtualRPC will suddenly spring to life on the 2nd or third attempt but in very rare cases it can take up to 24 hours. This suggestion goes against everything we believe about computers. We think of computers as logical and predictable, if you do exactly the same thing twice you will get the same result but it's not true anymore. Keep trying to run the VirtualRPC and suddenly ntdll.dll will 'change its mind' and decide that it will allow VirtualRPC to run.

Once you have entered your unlock code and clicked on the VirtualAcorn Unlock button you will need to go through the Licence Agreement and depending on your version of VirtualRPC the Select Model window.

Allow 10 seconds or so for RISC OS to start. If nothing happens and repeated double clicks on VirtualRPC don't produce any result you may have a second fault that's preventing RISC OS from loading. You will need to check the Windows Event Viewer to discover the cause of this second fault before VirtualRPC will be able to boot RISC OS.

With the Compatibility Mode enabled RISC OS will operate very slowly. Don't worry about this. Wait until RISC OS has entered the desktop and the hourglass vanishes, this may take several minutes. Once the entire RISC OS desktop has appeared simply click on the close icon for the VirtualRPC window using the White Mouse Pointer. Now you need to disable the Compatibility mode:

  • Firstly right click on your VirtualRPC Shortcut on the Windows desktop.
  • Then click on Properties from the Windows menu which opens.
  • The VirtualRPC application Properties window will open.
  • Click on the Compatibility tab.
  • Untick the Run this Program in compatibility mode for: button.
  • Click on Apply then on OK.

Now when you run VirtualRPC you will find that it behaves normally and the problem will not re-appear.

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 Copyright (c) 2017 3QD Developments Ltd. All rights reserved. All trademarks are acknowledged. All details are correct at the time of publication, E & OE.
Last Edit Date 01/11/17
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