Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Build installer error code -12 while copying distribution

Go to solution

Hello all you helpful forum-goers!


I am having problems building an installer for my product now that I have upgraded to LabVIEW 2010 from 8.5.1.  My project has an executable build, and then 3 installer builds which put a different value in the registry indicating the permissions level of the executable: Basic, Full, and Ultimate.


When I try to build the Full version, I get the following error: >> >> >> >> >>

Adding files to installer
Done adding files
Preparing to build deployment
Copying products from distributions
Copying distribution 'Williams International - Engine Maintenance Terminal (WI_EMT) Ultimate' from: C:\CP356\WI_EMT Ultimate Installer\ to: C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\National Instruments\MDF\ProductCache\
*** Error: Windows SDK function returned an error. (Error code -12)
The system cannot find the path specified.

*** Error Details:
Error in MDF API function: _MDFDistCopyList_CopyItem
Windows function FindFirstFile returned an error. Error code: 3
*** End Error Report
Done building deployment

The weird part is the "from" path doesn't exist, but C:\CP356\ does contain my project's files (including some sub-directories).  But even if it did, I have no idea why the Ultimate version is referenced when I am building the Full version.  I just tried building the Ultimate installer, and got the same error.

Stranger yet, this error goes away if I stop trying to include NI-VISA Runtime 5.0 in the additional installers section of my installer.  The only other "additional installer" I have checked is the LabVIEW 2010 Runtime Engine.  The VISA Runtime is required for my product, so I can't just leave it unchecked.  Another clue is that the VISA Runtime's Installer Source Location is listed as D:\, my DVD drive.  But even when I put the Device Drivers DVD in the drive, I get the same error when building.

I've tried looking in the Device Drivers DVD, but it says that the VISA Runtime 5.0 is already installed on my computer; I forget the exact path it listed, but I can get it again if that would help someone.  But I couldn't figure out how to change the source location to tell it to get that installer locally.

Based on the posts I've found in this forum for error code -12, I also created a new Build Specification for the Full installer and set all the same options as the previous one, in case something about it got corrupted when I upgraded, but it didn't seem to make a difference.

I would very much appreciate any insight anyone has on how to fix or get around this issue!



0 Kudos
Message 1 of 6

Hi jmorris,


Thanks for the detailed post. Since it seems like the NI-VISA Run-Time is the culprit there are a couple things that we can try. First, I'd recommend taking a look at this knowledgebase article as it has fixed this issue for some customers in the past.


If that knowledgebase article doesn't solve your problem then I'd recommend reinstalling NI-VISA from your machine rather than from the Device Drivers DVD directly. You can copy the contents from the Device Driver DVD to your machine and then install from on the harddrive. This should update the Installer Source Location to the harddrive rather than the 😧 drive.


Let me know if either of these work for you.


Paul M

National Instruments | Applications Engineer |
Message 2 of 6



Thanks for the reply!  I looked at the knowledge base article, and followed it to the .NET 3.5 install page, and from there to the .NET 4.0 install page (figuring the later version the better), downloaded that and selected to "repair" my .NET 4.0 installation.  It looked like it did thing for a while (was something broken? ;-)), but no change to my problem afterwards.


The other item in the article was a particular virus protection software, which I do not use.  McAfee anti-virus is installed on my system, but it is controlled by our IT department and therefore is harder to change than usual.  It has been installed the entire time I have used LabVIEW on my computer with no problems prior to this, but I will contact them to see if they could put LabVIEW on an exception list anyway next.


Since I couldn't do that immediately, I copied the NI-VISA_Runtime folder off of my Device Drivers DVD onto my desktop, used it to uninstall NI-VISA Runtime 5.0, and then reinstalled it.  However, this did not fix the problem, or even change the additional installer properties for that item - it still says the source location is D:\.


Do you have any other suggestions for things I can try?  I very much appreciate your assistance!




0 Kudos
Message 3 of 6

I just had IT turn off my anti-virus software entirely while I tried building again, and got the same error, so that's not it either.  Smiley Sad

0 Kudos
Message 4 of 6
Accepted by topic author jmorris

Hi jmorris,


Rather than reinstalling the NI VISA Run-Time, we actually want to reinstall the entire driver. Go ahead and go to Add/Remove programs and uninstall the NI-VISA entries. Then download the NI-VISA installer from here and install. This should update the path location in the application builder. Then try buildling your application to see if you get the same error.


Paul M

National Instruments | Applications Engineer |
Message 5 of 6



Thank you!  That did the trick.  I am now able to build with no problems, and the distribution source for NI-VISA in the installer properties was changed to a local folder.


It was inconvenient that uninstalling NI-VISA required me to uninstall not only my product, but also LabVIEW RealTime and a couple other modules as well.  I am hoping that reinstalling those doesn't mess up the system again, but I don't think it will.


Regardless, thank you very much for your assistance!  Kudos to you, sir.  Smiley Happy



0 Kudos
Message 6 of 6