Windows Support Menu
Microsoft Information Utility (MSInfo)
Overview of MSInfo
MSInfo is simply an application that provides information on the customer's system. Think of it as a form of DMI that actually works and is useful. MSInfo allows you to view system information such as hardware devices installed and device drivers loaded. MSInfo is used to help solve software related issued like driver conflicts, etc...
All information that MSInfo provides is collected from the registry, system.ini, win.ini, autoexec.bat, config.sys, and from the operating system itself - such as what 16-bit and 32-bit modules are running. Instead of using Device Manager to discover conflicts, MSInfo can be used. Although you'll still need DM to actually solve the conflict by adding or removing drivers, MSInfo is much more powerful to discover what the initial problem is.
Starting and Using MSInfo
To start MSInfo, just open a Run dialog from the Start menu, type "MSInfo32", and hit enter.
When MSInfo comes up, it presents a window that is divided into two sections. The section on the left shows the various categories of information that can be provided about the system in outline form, complete with the + and - symbols we're all used to. On the right, the actual information from the category selected on the left is displayed.
The beginning screen displays general system info, including:
The listing of categories on the left is dependant on the hardware installed on the system. Here is list of the categories and subcategories, and what they display:
SYSTEM INFORMATION - Lists the information given above.
Of course, all this information can be exported to a .nfo file by choosing "Save" from the "File" menu. MSInfo can also be used to launch several other Win98 troubleshooting applications via the "Tools" menu.
Points to Remember
Launch MSInfo from the Run dialog.
MSInfo collects information from the Configuration manager, which is not available in Safe mode. Therefore, MSInfo can only report information while in Normal mode. You can sill run MSInfo in safe mode to view previously created .nfo files, however.
MSInfo is best used in conjunction with Device Manager to solve device conflicts.