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unauthorized change made to Windows, error 0xC004D401 RRS feed

  • Question

  • Hi there, I've read some other threads with this error "System file mismatch error." My situation seems a bit different, but maybe I'm missing something. I have a Lenovo T500 laptop and a dock. It is a work machine and has software installs managed by SMS.

    A couple days ago I started getting this message by Windows Activation. Here is the MGA Diag output.

    Diagnostic Report (1.9.0011.0):
    -----------------------------------------
    WGA Data-->
    Validation Status: Invalid License
    Validation Code: 50

    Cached Validation Code: N/A, hr = 0xc004d401
    Windows Product Key: *****-*****-X2YGT-QR4M6-4BWMV
    Windows Product Key Hash: TnwCbyf9ehGTwtFVj04JwJukZMg=
    Windows Product ID: 89579-236-0200203-71503
    Windows Product ID Type: 1
    Windows License Type: KMS Client
    Windows OS version: 6.0.6001.2.00010100.1.0.004
    ID: {DFAF5C0C-D05F-46DC-93B6-22780E8DA44F}(1)
    Is Admin: Yes
    TestCab: 0x0
    WGA Version: Registered, 1.9.9.1
    Signed By: Microsoft
    Product Name: Windows Vista (TM) Enterprise
    Architecture: 0x00000000
    Build lab: 6001.vistasp1_gdr.090302-1506
    TTS Error: K:20090827220305093-M:20090828090545046-
    Validation Diagnostic:
    Resolution Status: N/A

    WgaER Data-->
    ThreatID(s): N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    WGA Notifications Data-->
    Cached Result: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    File Exists: No
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    WgaTray.exe Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    WgaLogon.dll Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    OGA Notifications Data-->
    Cached Result: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Version: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    OGAExec.exe Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    OGAAddin.dll Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002

    OGA Data-->
    Office Status: 100 Genuine
    Microsoft Office Standard 2007 - 100 Genuine
    OGA Version: N/A, 0x80070002
    Signed By: N/A, hr = 0x80070002
    Office Diagnostics: 025D1FF3-364-80041010_025D1FF3-229-80041010_025D1FF3-230-1_025D1FF3-517-80040154_025D1FF3-237-80040154_025D1FF3-238-2_025D1FF3-244-80070002_025D1FF3-258-3_E2AD56EA-765-d003_E2AD56EA-766-0_E2AD56EA-134-80004005

    Browser Data-->
    Proxy settings: N/A
    User Agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 8.0; Win32)
    Default Browser: C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe
    Download signed ActiveX controls: Prompt
    Download unsigned ActiveX controls: Disabled
    Run ActiveX controls and plug-ins: Allowed
    Initialize and script ActiveX controls not marked as safe: Disabled
    Allow scripting of Internet Explorer Webbrowser control: Disabled
    Active scripting: Allowed
    Script ActiveX controls marked as safe for scripting: Allowed

    File Scan Data-->

    Other data-->
    Office Details: <GenuineResults><MachineData><UGUID>{DFAF5C0C-D05F-46DC-93B6-22780E8DA44F}</UGUID><Version>1.9.0011.0</Version><OS>6.0.6001.2.00010100.1.0.004</OS><Architecture>x32</Architecture><PKey>*****-*****-*****-*****-4BWMV</PKey><PID>89579-236-0200203-71503</PID><PIDType>1</PIDType><SID>S-1-5-21-3985316970-1203935735-285307109</SID><SYSTEM><Manufacturer>LENOVO</Manufacturer><Model>2056BZ4</Model></SYSTEM><BIOS><Manufacturer>LENOVO</Manufacturer><Version>6FET66WW (2.16 )</Version><SMBIOSVersion major="2" minor="4"/><Date>20090422000000.000000+000</Date></BIOS><HWID>E8323507018400F8</HWID><UserLCID>0409</UserLCID><SystemLCID>0409</SystemLCID><TimeZone>Pacific Standard Time(GMT-08:00)</TimeZone><iJoin>1</iJoin><SBID><stat>3</stat><msppid></msppid><name></name><model></model></SBID><OEM><OEMID>LENOVO</OEMID><OEMTableID>TP-6F   </OEMTableID></OEM><GANotification/></MachineData><Software><Office><Result>100</Result><Products><Product GUID="{90120000-0012-0000-0000-0000000FF1CE}"><LegitResult>100</LegitResult><Name>Microsoft Office Standard 2007</Name><Ver>12</Ver><Val>7278918EF102586</Val><Hash>YetAsHChJzEQnHW/nQXLzMYyIvk=</Hash><Pid>89396-707-1357847-65715</Pid><PidType>14</PidType></Product></Products><Applications><App Id="16" Version="12" Result="100"/><App Id="18" Version="12" Result="100"/><App Id="1A" Version="12" Result="100"/><App Id="1B" Version="12" Result="100"/></Applications></Office></Software></GenuineResults> 

    Spsys.log Content: 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

    Licensing Data-->
    C:\Windows\system32\slmgr.vbs(1634, 5) (null): 0xC004D401

    HWID Data-->
    HWID Hash Current: QAAAAAIABgABAAIAAQABAAAABAABAAEAeqimXMdXbx6AhbBULgjkLBDTxKXMi3L96qPy9IS7DvYc96xWyttGyg==

    OEM Activation 1.0 Data-->
    N/A

    OEM Activation 2.0 Data-->
    BIOS valid for OA 2.0: yes
    Windows marker version: 0x20000
    OEMID and OEMTableID Consistent: yes
    BIOS Information:
      ACPI Table Name    OEMID Value    OEMTableID Value
      APIC            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      FACP            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      HPET            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      BOOT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      MCFG            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      SSDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      ECDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      SLIC            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      ASF!            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      SSDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      TCPA                   
      SSDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      SSDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  
      SSDT            LENOVO        TP-6F  


    ----
    This line indicates the failure's nature and time:

    TTS Error: K:20090827220305093-M:20090828090545046-

    unfortunately the M value is today just a few minutes ago, so I don't think that's very valuable info (since the last time the Reliability Monitor was updated was 8/27/09). The K (kernel mode) info is yesterday. The failures started two days ago so I wonder if I'm missing something. I ran Perfmon's Reliability monitor and as I said it has no data for today, and yesterday 8/27 only has one software install event - "Configuration Manager Client" had an Application Configuration Change at version 4.00.6221.1000. Looking back through the days I can see that same message for many days. I also see an App install for "Aventail OPSWAT End Point Control" which is my VPN software. It shows the same version every time, so I think this is just the VPN software loading into memory. The version number is the same before and after the date the failures started happening. Today I have not run the VPN client so I do not think that is the culprit (since we are talking about a runtime issue here).

    I ran slmgr -ato as Admin and it didn't help.
    I ran sfc /scannow as Admin and it said

    ----
    C:\Windows\system32>sfc /scannow

    Beginning system scan.  This process will take some time.

    Beginning verification phase of system scan.
    Verification 100% complete.

    Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations.
    ----

    I'm thinking of doing a system restore next, but I'd appreciate any other ideas or places to look.
    Friday, August 28, 2009 4:38 PM

Answers

  • Hello mlekas,

    Vista is in, what we call a 'Mod-Auth' Tamper state.  There are 2 types of Mod-Auth tampers.

    1)    A critical system file was modified On Disk - What this means is that the file, located on the hard drive, was modified in some way. This can be caused by a malicious program (spyware, malware, virus) or by manual file modification (by a user of the system). There is also a very small chance that an Update may fail in mid-update and cause this type of issue. As a safety mechanism, Updates are made so that if they fail, they roll back any updating that was done before the failure, but there is an off-chance that the roll back did not occur.

     

    2)    A critical system file was modified In Memory - What this means is the file itself (on the hard drive) is un-modified, but the code, from that file, running in the system, was modified in some way and is caused by a running program that is incompatible with Vista.

     

      Because there is No Mismatched files listed under the "File Scan Data-->" line of your Diagnostic Report, we know that your issue is an In Memory Mod-Auth and therefore caused by an incompatible program. This means there is a program install and Running that is trying to access parts of the OS that Vista does not allow, which by definition, means it is incompatible with Vista.

    NOTE: We have seen an increase in this type of issue and we believe it is unlikely that software writers are still making programs that are incompatible with Vista. Instead, we believe that a majority of the issues are being caused by Malware that are doing the same things (on purpose) as incompatible programs do (by accident).

     

      In addition to why a Mod-Auth occurs, it's also important to understand how Vista detects a Mod-Auth event. There is a Service that runs in Vista that detects a Tamper to a Critical System file. But this Service runs randomly, so if you were to install an incompatible program and run it, Vista (most likely) would not immediately enter a Mod-Auth  State and it could take some time for the Mod-Auth to be detected. The important point to note is that the moment Vista detects the Mod-Auth, you know that the program that is causing the Mod-Auth, is currently running.

     

       Below I have provided a number of steps to help you identify the program that is causing the tamper:
     
      First, go to
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/931699/ and confirm that you do not have any of the programs known to cause this type of issue.
     
      Second, in your Diagnostic report above, you can see the line that starts with 'TTS Error:' followed by a bunch numbers: M:xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx- This is the Tamper Time Stamp 

    Note: In Memory Mod-Auth tampers are ongoing events. the TTS time stamp only shows you the time/date of the most recent Tamper event. 

        (year)  (month) (day) (time in 24format) (millisecond)
    M:2009       08      28           0905                     45046-

    Note: I also see a "K" type Tamper Time Stamp. The “K“ stands for Kernel Mode tamper. Once you remove the program that is causing the In Memory Mod-Auth tamper, the Kernel Mode tamper may be resolved as well. But a Kernel Mode Tamper can sometime indicate a Malware infection. To be on the safe side, we strongly suggest scanning your system with the Anti-Virus program of your choice as well as with the OneCare Safety Scanner for Vista (http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm)


    Now that you know the time of the tamper, you can now try to connect that time with a program.

    1)    Login to Vista and select the option that launches an Internet Browser

    2)    Type into the browser address bar: %windir%\system32\perfmon.msc and hit Enter

    3)    When asked if you want to Open or Save this file, select Open

    4)     In the left hand panel, click Reliability Monitor

    5)    Click on the “System Stability Chart” above the date 08/28

    6)    Below the chart, in the “System Stability Report” section look at the report titled "Software (Un)Installs for 08/28/2009 "

    7)    Look for any program that shows "Application Install" in the 'Activity' column.

    8)    Since the process that detects Tampers runs randomly, it can take up to 3 days for the process to detect the tamper and set Vista to a Tamper State. Because of this, please repeat steps 5) thru 7) for the dates 08/27/2009, 08/26/2009 and 08/25/2009  (or around the date the issue first occurred)

      This could tell you what programs were installed on or around the Tamper date and should help you narrow down the possible programs that could be causing the issue. Unfortunately, if you installed the program at some time in the past, but didn’t run it till now, this process may not be helpful.  The removal of any application you may have installed recently could go a long way to troubleshooting this issues.

     

    Note: Since everyone has different programs installed on their computer, it is extremely hard for support to figure out what program is causing the problem, but if you still need assistance in identifying the Incompatible Program, please create a no cost support request at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=52029

    Also Note: it has been found that Malware, such as Viruses and Trojans, can also be incompatible with Vista and can cause an In Memory Mod-Auth. A number of users (that were experiencing your same issue) have confirmed that a Malware infection was the cause. If you follow the above steps and cannot find a program that is causing the Mod-Auth, you may want to investigate if a Virus, Worm or Trojan may be to blame. You can contact PC Safety, which is a Microsoft group, which provides free assistance with Malware infections. I encourage you to use the ‘Windows Live Safety Scan for Windows Vista’ (http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm) before contacting PC Safety.

    PC Safety:

    http://www.microsoft.com/protect/support/default.mspx

    http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm

    Thank you,
    darin MS

    Friday, August 28, 2009 7:11 PM

All replies

  • Hello mlekas,

    Vista is in, what we call a 'Mod-Auth' Tamper state.  There are 2 types of Mod-Auth tampers.

    1)    A critical system file was modified On Disk - What this means is that the file, located on the hard drive, was modified in some way. This can be caused by a malicious program (spyware, malware, virus) or by manual file modification (by a user of the system). There is also a very small chance that an Update may fail in mid-update and cause this type of issue. As a safety mechanism, Updates are made so that if they fail, they roll back any updating that was done before the failure, but there is an off-chance that the roll back did not occur.

     

    2)    A critical system file was modified In Memory - What this means is the file itself (on the hard drive) is un-modified, but the code, from that file, running in the system, was modified in some way and is caused by a running program that is incompatible with Vista.

     

      Because there is No Mismatched files listed under the "File Scan Data-->" line of your Diagnostic Report, we know that your issue is an In Memory Mod-Auth and therefore caused by an incompatible program. This means there is a program install and Running that is trying to access parts of the OS that Vista does not allow, which by definition, means it is incompatible with Vista.

    NOTE: We have seen an increase in this type of issue and we believe it is unlikely that software writers are still making programs that are incompatible with Vista. Instead, we believe that a majority of the issues are being caused by Malware that are doing the same things (on purpose) as incompatible programs do (by accident).

     

      In addition to why a Mod-Auth occurs, it's also important to understand how Vista detects a Mod-Auth event. There is a Service that runs in Vista that detects a Tamper to a Critical System file. But this Service runs randomly, so if you were to install an incompatible program and run it, Vista (most likely) would not immediately enter a Mod-Auth  State and it could take some time for the Mod-Auth to be detected. The important point to note is that the moment Vista detects the Mod-Auth, you know that the program that is causing the Mod-Auth, is currently running.

     

       Below I have provided a number of steps to help you identify the program that is causing the tamper:
     
      First, go to
    http://support.microsoft.com/kb/931699/ and confirm that you do not have any of the programs known to cause this type of issue.
     
      Second, in your Diagnostic report above, you can see the line that starts with 'TTS Error:' followed by a bunch numbers: M:xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx- This is the Tamper Time Stamp 

    Note: In Memory Mod-Auth tampers are ongoing events. the TTS time stamp only shows you the time/date of the most recent Tamper event. 

        (year)  (month) (day) (time in 24format) (millisecond)
    M:2009       08      28           0905                     45046-

    Note: I also see a "K" type Tamper Time Stamp. The “K“ stands for Kernel Mode tamper. Once you remove the program that is causing the In Memory Mod-Auth tamper, the Kernel Mode tamper may be resolved as well. But a Kernel Mode Tamper can sometime indicate a Malware infection. To be on the safe side, we strongly suggest scanning your system with the Anti-Virus program of your choice as well as with the OneCare Safety Scanner for Vista (http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm)


    Now that you know the time of the tamper, you can now try to connect that time with a program.

    1)    Login to Vista and select the option that launches an Internet Browser

    2)    Type into the browser address bar: %windir%\system32\perfmon.msc and hit Enter

    3)    When asked if you want to Open or Save this file, select Open

    4)     In the left hand panel, click Reliability Monitor

    5)    Click on the “System Stability Chart” above the date 08/28

    6)    Below the chart, in the “System Stability Report” section look at the report titled "Software (Un)Installs for 08/28/2009 "

    7)    Look for any program that shows "Application Install" in the 'Activity' column.

    8)    Since the process that detects Tampers runs randomly, it can take up to 3 days for the process to detect the tamper and set Vista to a Tamper State. Because of this, please repeat steps 5) thru 7) for the dates 08/27/2009, 08/26/2009 and 08/25/2009  (or around the date the issue first occurred)

      This could tell you what programs were installed on or around the Tamper date and should help you narrow down the possible programs that could be causing the issue. Unfortunately, if you installed the program at some time in the past, but didn’t run it till now, this process may not be helpful.  The removal of any application you may have installed recently could go a long way to troubleshooting this issues.

     

    Note: Since everyone has different programs installed on their computer, it is extremely hard for support to figure out what program is causing the problem, but if you still need assistance in identifying the Incompatible Program, please create a no cost support request at http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?linkid=52029

    Also Note: it has been found that Malware, such as Viruses and Trojans, can also be incompatible with Vista and can cause an In Memory Mod-Auth. A number of users (that were experiencing your same issue) have confirmed that a Malware infection was the cause. If you follow the above steps and cannot find a program that is causing the Mod-Auth, you may want to investigate if a Virus, Worm or Trojan may be to blame. You can contact PC Safety, which is a Microsoft group, which provides free assistance with Malware infections. I encourage you to use the ‘Windows Live Safety Scan for Windows Vista’ (http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm) before contacting PC Safety.

    PC Safety:

    http://www.microsoft.com/protect/support/default.mspx

    http://onecare.live.com/site/en-us/center/whatsnew.htm

    Thank you,
    darin MS

    Friday, August 28, 2009 7:11 PM
  • Thanks Darin. Your reply may be auto generated, as I have followed most of those steps already. But let me confirm:

    1. I am not running any of the incompatible programs listed on that page ( http://support.microsoft.com/kb/931699/ )
    2. The time of the tamper is only correlated to the time I run the detection utility (slmgr -ato). Since historical data is not kept I can't tell you when it last alerted me, unless you are aware of a log where that data is kept. The only updates to the system in the last 20 days have been Microsoft updates and a new install of Microsoft Office Communicator R2. There were also the multiple instances of the VPN software loading, which I detailed above.
    3. My virus scanner has two Trojan viruses in quarentine - Artemis!6A9978EC758D and Generic Dropper. Both were detected in very old files on the system that I haven't accessed in a long time. A full scan has revealed nothing.

    Friday, August 28, 2009 10:11 PM
  • Hello mlekas,

      That is what makes In Memory Mod-Auths such a pain to resolve.  All I can tell you is that there is some sort of program that is actively shimming or hooking into (modifing) a protected file in System Memory. That is what the error code 0xc004d401 means.

      Unfortunatly, there isn't any way to backtrack thru the chain of commands to find the source of the problem (or so my Devs tell me). So I am unable to tell you which program is the cause, only that there is a running program that is the cause.

      I do wish there was more I could do, but it comes down to tracking down the program and updating it or deleting it and while I can give suggestions on how to narrow down the search, the user of the computer is really the only one in a position to figure it out and resolve the issue.

    Sorry I couldn't be more help,
    Darin MS 
    Monday, August 31, 2009 7:42 PM