Windows Vista: Troubleshooting and Support

This collection contains information to help IT Pros troubleshoot and resolve specific system errors and events, as well as networking and Group Policy issues. It also provides links to general Windows Vista troubleshooting topics at the Windows Vista Help and How-to Support site and Windows Vista Solution Center site.

Troubleshooting USB Devices

Understanding USB Sleep State Issues in Windows Vista

This article briefly outlines how sleep state works for two different classes of USB devices in a Windows operation system, describes some the unique issues that result from those behaviors in a Windows Vista system, and provides a workaround for those issues.

Troubleshooting Events and Errors

For information on troubleshooting Windows Vista system events and errors, see the following:

How to Troubleshoot Windows Webcast (describes how to use Event Viewer to identify and resolve system errors and events)

Events and Errors (describes how the error and event troubleshooting information is organized)

Core Operating System Components [LHHM] (covering Display Drivers, Plug and Play Devices, Name resolution for peer communication, and Service Control Manager)

Core Security [LHHM] (covering system security functionality, such as authentication, authorization, and access control features, built into the Windows operating system, e.g., BitLocker Drive Encryption, CryptoAPI 2.0, Code Integrity, Kerberos protocol, Software Restriction Policies, and Windows Initialization)

Management Infrastructure [LHHM] (covering system performance, scheduled tasks, remote management)

Reliability Infrastructure [LHHM] (covering operating system components that support reliability monitoring and diagnosis)

Setup Infrastructure [LHHM] (covering installation of optional components, packages, and language packs)

Windows Firewall with Advanced Security [LHHM] (covering the Windows components that help protect your computer from unwanted network traffic)

Windows Defender [LHHM] (covering the Windows security components for detection and mitigation of spyware and other potentially unwanted software)

Windows Media Center Extender [LHHM] (covering the network-attached device that connects to the Windows Media Center PC)

Windows Update [LHHM] (covering the component that runs on each client computer and checks for availability of updates)

Troubleshooting Group Policy

Troubleshooting Group Policy Using Event Logs

Troubleshooting Networking

In Windows Vista, Network Map diagrams the connections between devices on your network to help you troubleshoot connectivity problems. Network computers that are running Windows XP must have the Link-Layer Topology Discovery (LLTD) Responder component installed and enabled before they can appear on the Network Map or respond to the mapping computer's requests.

For more information, see Network Map Does Not Display Computers Running Windows XP.

The above topic instructs you on how to perform the following tasks:

  1. Install the LLTD Responder component onto a computer running Windows XP

  2. Verify the LLTD Responder component is installed and running

  3. Exclude File and Printer Sharing from Windows Firewall filtering

  4. Generate a new Network Map and connect to all network computers

For more information on troubleshooting wireless and wired connections, see:

Troubleshooting Windows Vista 802.11 Wireless Connections

Troubleshooting Windows Vista Secure 802.3 Wired Connections

For information on troubleshooting Windows Firewall, see:

Windows Firewall with Advanced Security Troubleshooting Guide: Diagnostics and Tools

Troubleshooting PKI

Troubleshooting PKI Problems on Windows Vista

This document describes how to use CryptoAPI 2.0 Diagnostics to compile detailed information about certificate chain validation, certificate store operations, and signature verification, thereby simplifying the process of identifying the cause of public key infrastructure (PKI) problems.

General Troubleshooting

For troubleshooting basic issues, see the topics below at the Windows Vista Help and How-to Support site:

Hardware and drivers

Audio and video

Setup and maintenance




Internet Explorer


For solutions to the top Vista issues, visit the Windows Vista Solution Center.