KNOWN ISSUE: pcAnywhere plug-in is problematic on some managed computers

Article:TECH47115  |  Created: 2009-11-19  |  Updated: 2013-11-20  |  Article URL
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Article Type
Technical Solution



After enabling a pcAnywhere Solution plug-in Install or Upgrade policy, that task appears to complete, but behavior from a percentage of managed computers indicates that there are problems.

For example:

  • The error "No such host is known" appears when attempting to initiate a remote control session to a host computer
  • pcAnywhere Settings policies are never applied to the managed clients, leaving the default configuration in place
  • "Invalid login" errors may appear when attempting to authenticate to host computers with anything other than credentials from the local Administrators group, even though alternate credentials were supplied in the pcAnywhere Settings policy
  • Some of the target computers for the Install or Upgrade policies never change Resource memberships. This can be verified by viewing the membership of the filter for the policies.  For example, the computers still appear as members of the filter "Windows Computers with no pcAnywhere plug-in installed" rather than "Windows Computers with pcAnywhere plug-in Installed".
  • pcAnywhere plug-in installation continuously loops due to the Install policy running on a schedule


pcAnywhere Solution 12.5.x




These symptoms can occur because the pcAnywhere Solution agent plug-in failed to register with the Altiris Agent (now called the Symantec Management Agent).  If this registration fails, the Symantec Management Agent does not recognize the pcAnywhere plug-in as installed, even though the pcAnywhere "host" program installs and runs.

The exact steps leading to the failed pcAnywhere plug-in registration are under investigation.  Two scenarios leading to this behavior may be:

  • the pcAnywhere Install policy is applied to a target computer, followed by the Uninstall policy, and again the Install policy
  • running "AeXAgentUtil.exe /clean"


Examine the log files on one or more affected managed computers, located under the following folder:
C:\Program Files\Altiris\Altiris Agent\Agents\SoftwareManagement\Software Delivery\{B364DA8F-1735-4DD3-865A-8B33CA5523CD}\cache

Look for errors in the following files:

  • hostexelog.log
  • Log.log
  • msilog.txt

If the msilog.txt reports the following error:

MSI (s) (3C:4C) []: Product: Symantec_pcAnywhere_plugin_installer -- Configuration failed.

Another version of this product is already installed.  Installation of this version cannot continue.  To configure or remove the existing version of this product, use Add/Remove Programs on the Control Panel.

then try the following suggestions, one at a time, until your issue is resolved:

  1. This is the easiest method for a large number of affected computers. Set the pcAnywhere Uninstall policy to run on the affected computers.  Once this has run on each of the affected computers, disable the Uninstall policy.  Set the pcAnywhere Install policy run on these clients again, and remember to uncheck the "Run once ASAP" option before clicking "Save changes".  It may be necessary to manually run the Task from the Symantec Management Agent on the managed computer to initiate the plug-in installation.
  2. Using Windows Registry Editor(regedit), delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\{32DE07AD-308A-484B-8BFE-740D8F9C80EB}.  Then set the pcAnywhere Install policy to run on the managed computer again, and remember to uncheck the "Run once ASAP" option before clicking "Save changes".  It may be necessary to manually run the Task from the Symantec Management Agent on the managed computer to initiate the plug-in installation.
  3. This option may be best for a small number of affected computers.  This should only be performed if the pcAnywhere host is installed and running, but "Symantec pcA Agent" is not shown as a registered Plug-in for the Symantec Management Agent.  Manually register the pcAnywhere plug-in with the Symantec Manager Agent by opening a Command Prompt (for Windows Vista and Windows 7, open as Administrator) and running the following command:

regsvr32 pcAAgent.dllOtherwise, if the cause of the failure is not apparent from the logs or the above steps do not resolve the issue, then contact Symantec Technical Support for additional assistance.  Click here for support contact options.


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