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Educational Software Thread, Black Cat Fresco profile conflict in Technical; We have a suite of 32 Workstations with most components of Blackcat Supertools 1.2.1 MSI'd from our Win 2K server. ...
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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    We have a suite of 32 Workstations with most components of Blackcat Supertools 1.2.1 MSI'd from our Win 2K server. Paw Prints continues to be extremely unreliable and recently the previously stable Fresco also became unstable on some workstations with some user profiles - it fails on start up with the following message "Fresco unable to locate your teacher settings. Please contact your network administrator" We have IE7 deployed on the workstations as our browser.

    I'm pretty sure that this is Profile not workstation related as relogging the user to a Workstation previously successfully running Fresco replicates the fault. I have tried all sorts - deleting user profile from the workstation, deleting any reference to Fresco in the user's home folder, copying a known good NTUSER.DAT file into the users documents and settings folder on the workstation but nothing seems to clear the problem for the effected user.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Did it work ok with IE6? havce you tried going back to that?

    Ben

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    We have had the Blackcat Super Tools running off the Network for close on three years now. There have always been problems with some users running one of it's component programes - Paw Prints - just dumps the programme mid use and I have found that by logging the user off and removing any Paw Prints reference from there user folder often resolves the problem.

    Not a lot of students have been using the Super Tools programmes till a recent turn of curriculum brought it back into flavour. Now I have found the ongoing Paw Prints problems at about the same level of frequency but also the previously very stable Fresco is also refusing to run with some users and today discovered that Designer yet another programme, but workstation installed, out of the Granada learning stable is also refusing to run for some users.

    Running the programmes with admin permissions or a user who has a proven profile from another workstation works so I'm pretty sure it's not an IE7 / IE6 conflict. I'm spending a lot of time on it and seeming to get nowhere!

    What integrated packages are other primary schools using for design / drawing / etc. and do they work with stability? Are others experiencing problems with the Granada software?

    Granada have offered a suggested solution but unfortunately the web site they have posted it on comes up as not available at present from my home system.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    "Fresco unable to locate your teacher settings. Please contact your network administrator" is normally attributable not to IE7 but profile.

    The issue is normally resolved if you log in as admin, delete the hidden Fresco folder, start the programme, press CTRL+T to access the teacher settings, and ensure that all users have full control to the save paths (or browse for an area they can save work in that they do have full control of).

    You should now be able to run the programme from a restrictive account without issue.

    The Pawprints issue is normally resolved by installing the two patches that are available for download from the GL PriorityOne website, and again ensuring that all users have full control save paths. The URL is http://priorityone.granada-learning.com - Just perform a search for Pawprints.

    V1.3 of Supertools included MSI's and fixed issues found in 1.2 - You may be best speaking with Granada Learning Customer Services on 0161 827 2927 who may be able to send out the latest version FOC.

    Hope this helps

    G

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    speckytecky's Avatar
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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Thanks GL Guy, I'll give it a try.

    Today though I tried our other Granada Programs.

    Designer: Message: Microsoft Visual C++ Runtime Error.
    Runtime Error!

    Program: C:\ Program Files\Blackcat\Designer\Designer.exe

    Abnormal program termination.

    Paw Prints:

    Failed to create Paw Prints Directory. Please ensure that you have a valid save path. \\wcs-server01\students\tamsinb\pawprints\

    (tamsinb being one of our current students but not the one I was logged on as)

    Then this also went to Message: Microsoft Visual C++ Runtime Error.
    Runtime Error!

    Logo also runtime error.

    Decisions, Counting Pictures, Information Workshop 2000 and Stickers all ran OK.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Most Blackcat errors are attributable to the fact that during installation there is a hidden folder created in the Admin's My Documents folder. This hidden folder contains settings which the programme references upon startup. Problems arise when a restricted account tries to read the settings file within the admin profile, as it does not have access.

    Best thing to do is delete this hidden folder as soon as you can after initial installation - That way the program will access the settings file within the installation folder.

    All 3 applications you mention in your last reply have hidden folders. There are also 2 patches available for Pawprints - One of which resolves an MFC error caused by the programme having a small copy buffer (so if you copy/paste several times it will error) and the second fixes an error caused by resizing the stamp.

    Other potential issues concentrate around the teacher settings area. CTRL+T accesses this, and most problems concerned with this are due to save and temporary path locations, or more the fact that restrictive accounts may not have full control to the paths specified in this area.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Thanks for this further update GL Guy. So this hidden folder is going to be on the local machine or would it be on the admin server folder?

    Also, when I tried to set the save path in teacher settings as a user the system was not allowing me to select the student folder. That said, if I'm reading your input correctly deleting the relevant folder from the Admin log on docs and settings should sort that problem out on restart as a user.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    The hidden folders are all on the local machine, in the My Documents folder of the profile that installed the application.

    You should only set save paths from an administrative account, as restrictive profiles may not have the needed permissions to modify the settings file located within the installation folder.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    My Granada software problems persist and I seem to be spending a huge amount of time trying to resolve them:

    We have Supertools V 1.2.1 MSI deployed from the server. For a long time Logo has been too unreliable for confident use. Next Paw Prints developed an annoying habit of dumping out mid use for some users. Next Fresco became non-usable for certain users. The latest we now have non-usability problems with the standalone loaded Designer for a number of users. In whole class use yesterday a number of students trying to access work previously saved to their user file on the server found the work even though listed either failed to run or else took an age to load.

    Trying to resolve these issues I have tried various suggested workarounds. Including applying the 2 Paw Prints updates but still it’s unreliable on some workstations.

    The latest I got to successfully running all applications came yesterday when I deleted the user file on the local machine ran up the various programmes as the main admin user accessed the various teacher settings and set them where I could to save user files to H:\ the system / software refused to allow a change to H:\ in some cases insisting on the full server path with the student\administrator\relevant black cat subfolder

    Trying to set offline file access the suggestion is that I should be able to set this but my local machines don't have this available? When I go into Tools my options are general, view, and file types and in the latter there is no mention of off line file access?

    Yesterday I set all this tried to copy the ntuser.dat file from the admin docs and settings folder and copy it into both default and the alluser folders when logged on as the admin user but it refused to copy as the file was in use. Next I logged on as another user with admin permissions and copied the file to allusers and default then re-booted as a student user and it all seemed to run OK till I hit the unable to access in Paw Prints. Back at the server the Administrator sub folder living in the student folder directory does have sub folders for the various black cat programmes.

    My next thought is on a local machine delete all but the admin profile – would I be OK deleting the Default and Alluser folders? from the local machines docs and user settings folder interestingly there are three admin settings (Admin~1wcs which contains one folder local~1 in itself containing an empty temp sub folder, Administrator no blackcat but it does have a sort of normal range of sub folders and files and the old pre IE7 ntuser.dat file of 768kb, and administrator.wcs_server01 which again has a normal looking range of folders and subfolders and the 2,304kb ntuser.dat file which I have been copying. This done run up all programmes and try to set the teacher settings then run a student user.

    The problems this situation has generated now flow over into students on the machine I have been profile tinkering with using Publisher being told they cannot access the user folder that keeps getting wiped on our server. shared thoughts on how to work around this one would be most welcome - Granada's latest suggestion is to upgrade our Supre Tools version but as this now seems profile related I'm not so sure that will be the answer?

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    @speckytecky
    I have 2 schools using SuperTools.

    The workstations are not on a domain and they only have one logon (pupil) that has adminstrator rights.

    The only slight tweak is that the default save/load paths are set to a shared folder on a Win98 machine (with no restrictions obviously)

    It is not reliable even under these conditions :cry:

    So God knows how on earth you've managed to get it to work at all in a domain enviroment.

    (I used to have it on another school as well but they managed to get their money back )

    I admire your attempts to use it but IMO its not fit for purpose.

    In one phone call a couple of years ago, a technical support person told me it was old 16bit software kludged to work under XP to jump onto the ELC bandwagon.

    The uninstallers don't fully uninstall BTW.

    Having said this - I'll download the patches refferred to and see what happens but I hold little hope as I spent too much time for no gain on it several years ago.

    regards
    Simon

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Thanks for this gratifyingly frank posting Simon it explains a lot.

    What do other schools use to cover the aspects of the curriculum that this software was meant to cover: movement (Logo the turtle thing), Paw Prints a graphics with text, Fresco a graphics with picture import etc.

    Regards - Geoff

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    The latest version of Supertools is 1.3.

    1.3 was released to fix issues discovered in 1.2, and a free update is available from Granada Learning (if purchased directly from them) by contacting Customer Services on 0161 827 2927.

    If not purchased through GL direct, you must go back to your supplier.

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    [deleted]

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Well I have 1.3 here and I'm about to go into the depths of this using a GPO install with a basic MST applied based on the workstation setup.

    We'll see how we go...

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    Re: Black Cat Fresco profile conflict

    Can't say I'm surprised to be saying this but it just doesn't want to know...

    Initially I got the error requiring the ISScript.msi so I dutifully installed that but now I've got nothing installing just a GPO that says it's been successful and no files, programs, nada in the actual computer which seems to indicate (call me a fool if you will) that the install has been anything other than successful.

    Wonderful... *sigh*



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