MSI Installer Problem: can't install 2.4a2 on new install of Win2kSP2

Richard Hanson me at
Wed Aug 25 20:05:53 CEST 2004

Over the last few days, I reinstalled Win2kSP2 to a spare harddrive I
had just swapped into my Fujitsu LifeBook P1120 (long story <wink>).
Subsequently, I DL'ed the newest Python alpha (2.4a2), and when trying
to install it, I immediately got this error:

  This installation package cannot be installed by the
  Windows Installer service. You must install a
  Windows service pack that contains a newer version
  of the Windows Installer service.

(Python 2.4a2 had been working on the LifeBook P1120 before the crash
and subsequent reinstall.)

I immediately tried installing Python 2.4a2 on my older, HP laptop,
and that went fine.

I then went back to the Python alpha page and DL'ed the ~1.8MB file
linked from MS's site. After running the new DL from MS, the Python
MSI installer seemed to run.

However, now Idle wouldn't run, although the Python command line
(console) worked. I tried running Idle using Windows Explorer from
inside my Python installation at:  

  E:\Python24\Lib\idlelib\idle.pyw (and

but those didn't work, either. (E:\ is my Win2k partition and it's a
FAT32 partition.)

I then checked the new 2.4a2 install on the older HP laptop, and there
Idle worked -- from the menu shortcuts, and from launching the
idle.pyw file in Windows Explorer. 

(I note that the HP laptop already had Python23 on it. The HP has
*almost* the same OS: Win2kSP3 -- not a fresh install -- and is using
NTFS for its Win2k partition.)

I also note that the *.pyc files were not created by the installer on
the Fujitsu LifeBook P1120 but were on the HP Omnibook 900B (as may be

Back on the P1120, I used the MSI installer to "repair" the broken
install twice, used it again to completely remove Python, rebooted
<wink>, and then use the MSI installer one more time to reinstall.
Still no go.

Am I overlooking something simple...?

Thanks for any help anyone can offer.

(I'll try to followup as this gets solved -- I've reinstalled onto an
old harddrive, so I may crash again... :-) )

I'll-keep-at-it-and-try-DL'ing-2.3.4-tonight'ly y'rs

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