Microsoft KB Archive/104667

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WinMaster Attempts Illegal Access to Hard Disk


The information in this article applies to:

  • Microsoft Windows NT Server version 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Workstation version 3.1
  • Microsoft Windows NT Advanced Server, version 3.1


WinMaster by the PC-Kwik Corporation causes error messages when you attempt to install and use it in Windows NT 3.1. The most serious error message occurs if you try to use the PowerScope tool from the WinMaster utilities. After you attempt to open the PowerScope icon in the WinMaster Toolbox, the following error message appears in a dialog box titled "16 bit Windows Subsystem:"

PowerScope: An application has attempted to directly access the hard disk, which cannot be supported. This may cause the application to function incorrectly. Choose 'Close' to terminate application.

This dialog box gives you the options of Close or Ignore. If you choose Ignore, the PowerScope tool eventually causes a general protection (GP) fault.


Part of the functionality of WinMaster is to directly read disk information from the system hard disk in order to provide a disk directory, memory usage by directory, a disk map displaying usage and fragmentation, and information about the boot sector. Windows NT, however, does not allow applications to directly access the hardware. Therefore, the low-level WinMaster calls to the hard disk are illegal.


Currently no workaround or solution to the problem exists. No solution may be possible because the WinMaster application makes low-level calls to the hardware, which are not supported in Windows NT.


The PowerScope tool has a number of utility buttons including Log Drive, Directory Tree, and Disk Map. Various errors occur when you attempt to use each of these utilities. When you choose the Log Drive button, the following error message appears:

PowerScope! Error updating drive entry. Please update entire list.

When you choose OK in this dialog box, a second error message appears which states:

PowerScope! Unable to Log Drive!

If you choose on the Directory Tree button, you will get the following GP fault message:

POWERSCO caused a General Protection Fault in module PSCOPEW.EXE at xxxx:xxxx. [where the x's designate a hexadecimal memory address]

When you select the Disk Map option, you will receive the following error message:

Unable to Lock map buffer!

This error message is followed by the following error message:

Unable to lock FAT buffer!

A GP fault identical to the one listed above will appear at this point. The memory address may vary, but the other information as listed above will be the same.

Microsoft has confirmed this to be a problem in Windows NT. We are researching this problem and will post new information here as it becomes available.

The PC-Kwik products included here are manufactured by vendors independent of Microsoft; we make no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding these products' performance or reliability.

Additional query words: prodnt fragmentation defragmentation quick pc-quick repair utility

Keywords : kb3rdparty
Issue type :
Technology : kbWinNTsearch kbWinNTWsearch kbWinNTW310 kbWinNTSsearch kbWinNTS310 kbWinNTAdvSerSearch kbWinNTAdvServ310 kbWinNTS310xsearch kbWinNT310xSearch kbWinNTW310Search

Last Reviewed: October 27, 2000
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