Additional Kid Pix 3 and XP Solutions

The following solution(s) was provided to us by a customer who also happens to be a Tech consultant. I have also provided some of my own suggestions. Some or ALL of the following steps/solutions may be required for your computer to run Kid Pix 3. Please note….this isn’t our only page for Kid Pix 3 help. We have another page for Kid Pix 3 technical help located at  http://www.sundaysoftware.com/kidpixhelp.htm    <>< Neil, Sunday Software

 

Kid Pix XP Problems

 

A customer writes:
"Kid Pix would not run on our Dell GX520’s." An error message about the speech api would appear but give the option to continue. After choosing continue, nothing would happen. Note: Kid Pix ran OK on our new XP Pro SP2 laptops. But we received the same speech api message but choosing continue would launch the program.(Neil: You must install sapi 4.0 from the Kid Pix 3 CD to get the Kid Pix speech application to work.)

 

Customer’s Resolution:

After doing some searches on the Internet we had some possible solutions:

 

1)  Run the application in “compatibility mode” for Windows 98/ME

a.      Locate the executable file for Kid Pix on the hard drive (not the shortcut) (it's in c:\programs\broderbund)

b.      Highlight the .exe and right-click, select properties

c.      On the Compatibility tab select "Run this program in compatibility mode for Windows 98 / Windows Me"

 

This allowed the program to start -- but it started “upside down” on the monitor.

 

More research lead us to another possible fix:

 

2)     After the program starts upside down press and hold Ctrl-Alt and then the “Up” arrow.  This is a Microsoft suggested fix.

 

This worked except when we exited the program the display settings had been reset to 800 x 600 and any attempt to start Kid Pix failed – nothing happened it just didn’t start.  More research lead us to the following change:

 

3)     Back to the “compatibility mode” settings as detailed in item 1 above; also select “Disable visual themes” under Display Settings.

 

This fixed the “upside down” problem (so we would no longer have to do the Ctrl-Alt Up Arrow) but when exiting Kid Pix the display settings were still being reset to 800 x 600 and Kid Pix could still not be started a second time. Next we did 2 things that seem to have completely resolved the problem:

 

1)     Upgraded the video driver to the latest version from the manufacturer (Intel) and reduced Hardware Acceleration on the video adapter.

a.      Right click a blank spot on desktop

b.      Select Properties

c.      Select settings tab

d.      Select Advanced

e.      Select Troubleshooting

f.        We moved the Hardware acceleration indicator one notch at a time to the left and then tested each time finally settling on notch 3 of 6

 

(Neil notes: moving the accelerator can cause many other programs not to function properly. You have to move it back to "full" when done with Kid Pix. I recommend updating the videodriver first).

 

There’s another way to work with this “could not start a second time” problem…. When Kid Pix does not start up for a second time after exiting the program, hold down Alt-Ctl-Del keys to view Task Manager. Click “Processes” and look to see if one or more instances of KPD3.exe is still running. End those Processes to allow Kid Pix to start again.

 

What we finally decided to do on each machine was perform the following steps in this order:

 

1)     Update the video driver

2)     Decrease the hardware acceleration to the 3rd setting

3)     Apply the compatibly mode settings for Windows 98 and Disable visual themes.

4)     Download and install the back level speech api so the students would not get the error message and have to select “Continue” when starting the program (some of our younger students aren’t reading yet).

 

UPDATE: Another techie in a public school had the same problem and found this solution:

 

We also had a problem with Kid Pix 3 displaying upside down; I figured I'd pass what we learned on to you since your page is pretty much the definitive KP3 troubleshooting resource on the internet.

 

The upside down thing appears to be caused by certain implementations of the Intel Extreme Graphics chipset; this is used in many budget computers by Dell and other white-box manufacturers.  Basically, when the resolution drops to run KP it also mistakenly rotates the screen.

 

UNLESS you disable screen rotation.  For most people who aren't mounting their monitors to ceilings or on walls, Screen rotation isn't an essential feature.  This beats throttling hardware acceleration as there will be no performance hit.  To do this (with an intel graphics

chipset):

 

1. Right click on the desktop

2. Select Properties

3. Select "Settings"

4. Select "Advanced"

5. Select "Intel Graphics Media Accelerator"

6. Press the "Graphics Properties" Button 7. Select "Display Settings"

8. Uncheck the "Enable Rotation" tab.

 

KP3 will now run in the correct orientation.
Samuel Liston, Network Analyst, Davis JUSD

 

  

Neil :  This problem seems rather isolated to SOME manufacturer's video drivers, in particular, Intel Extreme graphic chips (we suspect) and XP Pro. Continue to look for UPDATED videodrivers from your computer's manufacturer. In the case of a recent error on my own Dell laptop, a recently released video driver cured a problem which other releases had not. The service pack updates from Microsoft may also contain 'the cure' as they are continually addressing problems that come to their attention. For more details about HOW to Update your Video Drivers....go to www.sundaysoftware.com/videocards.htm

 

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