Some of you have noticed an installation issue with the .NET Framework 1.1. If you have a Windows XP-based OS (Home, Professional, Media Center, Tablet PC) that is configured with a single user account so that it will boot directly to the desktop when it is restarted, installing the .NET Framework 1.1 will cause the Windows welcome screen to appear and will prevent the system from booting directly to the desktop without user intervention. There is a bug in .NET Framework 1.1 setup that causes this – the setup creates a hidden user account named ASPNET (which is used by the ASP.NET worker process), but that account does not have the correct attributes set on it to cause Windows to ignore it when deciding whether or not to show the welcome screen. Whenever Windows sees more than one user account on the system, it prevents the system from directly booting to the desktop. A knowledge base article has been published with a relatively simple workaround for this issue – install the .NET Framework 1.1 SP1.
I heard from a customer this week who found that installing SP1 did not help in the case where he installed the .NET Framework 2.0, then the .NET Framework 1.1, then the .NET Framework 1.1 SP1. I haven’t had a chance yet to figure out exactly what order of installation causes issues or what the root cause is, but in the meantime, there is a registry value that you can add to your system to prevent this issue from affecting you. You can use the following steps:
- Click on the Start menu, choose Run, type cmd and click OK
- Type reg add “HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon\SpecialAccounts\UserList” /v ASPNET /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
After adding this registry value, you should find that if your system previously booted directly to the desktop, it should start doing so again.