MiKTeX 2.9 (from proTeXt) fails to install on Windows 8.1 (x64) with the following error: Windows API error 2

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It turned out R.Schumacher was spot on. The issue was that I had been using what appears to be an unofficial (re-)build of the MikTeX setup. The setup file name on the DVD images was in both cases setup-2.9.4503-x64.exe, but the title bar of the setup showed MikTeX 2.9.5550 Installer (64-bit).

The suggested (and, as I just verified) working solution was to use the Basic Installer for MikTeX from miktex.org and install that.

However, obviously the basic installer does not attempt to install all available packages, so this might already explain part of the different outcome depending on the installer version.

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0xC0000022L

Updated on September 16, 2020

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  • 0xC0000022L
    0xC0000022L about 3 years

    MiKTeX 2.9 (from the proTeXt DVD) fails to install on a fully patched Windows 8.1 Pro (x64) with the following error:

    ---------------------------
    MiKTeX Setup Wizard
    ---------------------------
    The operation could not be completed for the following reason: 
    
    Windows API error 2: The system cannot find the file specified.
    
    
    Details: C:\Program Files\MiKTeX 2.9\tpm\packages\alg.tpm
    ---------------------------
    OK   
    ---------------------------
    

    The path of the "failing file" varies with every attempt. For example I captured the setup attempt using LICEcap:

    The problem visualized

    According to this question, however, no problems are to be expected (8.1 is essentially a service pack of Windows 8).

    Does anyone know how to work around this and get it to install? I had no problems installing from the exact same setup (from the proTeXt DVD) on a fully patched Windows 7 (x64).

    I tried both the DVD ProTeXt-3.1.5-031815.iso and ProTeXt-3.1.5-033015.iso. The hashes for these files matched the expected value.

    • Ulrike Fischer
      Ulrike Fischer over 8 years
      Looks like a timing problem. Do you have some virus protection enabled?
    • 0xC0000022L
      0xC0000022L over 8 years
      @UlrikeFischer: this is a standard installation of Windows, but I disabled Defender, so there should not be anything interfering.
    • R. Schumacher
      R. Schumacher over 8 years
      Where did you get this version of MikTeX 2.9. You show a release of 2.9.5555; however, at the official release site the latest is 2.9.5101. miktex.org/download.
    • 0xC0000022L
      0xC0000022L over 8 years
      @R.Schumacher: as mentioned in the last paragraph, I got that from the proTeXt DVD.
    • R. Schumacher
      R. Schumacher over 8 years
      If you are using the latest version of proText (ProTeXt-3.1.5-033015.exe 2015-Apr-30 11:10:00 1.8G), then I suspect there may be a file corruption. Assuming you do not have MiKTeX currently installed than I suggest you do a clean install from miktex.org. Do the basic install which is quickest. Then using TeXworks (which installs with MiKTeX) verify a compile works. After that load any needed packages. Note: You will have to install TeXstudio or your favorite IDE after the MiKTeX installation to get the paths correct.
    • 0xC0000022L
      0xC0000022L over 8 years
      @R.Schumacher: alright, apparently I was using ProTeXt-3.1.5-031815.iso (but the file was valid). I now downloaded ProTeXt-3.1.5-033015.iso and while the file name of the setup is setup-2.9.4503-x64.exe the title bar shows the same as before. And the problem remains. Will try the basic installer now instead.