When I right click a file in a lister, I get an hour glass and Directory Opus freezes with CPU usage rising to 95% before I get a message saying the program has stopped responding. I tried reinstalling with version 220.127.116.11 Unicode and it still happens
The only thing that might have affected it that I can think of is that yesterday, I downloaded the latest Windows updates (I am running XP Pro)but other programs work as usual including Windows Explorer.
I should be very grateful for any suggestions!
Check your process list (through the Task Manager) and see if you have a process called "verclsid.exe". This was installed by the latest round of Windows updates and seems to be causing no end of problems, not just with Opus but with Windows in general. If you kill that process you should find the right menu comes back to life again (until the next time verclsid.exe is started by the system).
Currently the only fix seems to be to rename the verclsid.exe file. If you run a google search you will find lots of discussion about this - but in short, it's nothing to do with Opus.
I didn't look for long so it may be a red herring but this thread over at AnandTech seems to suggest certain Spyware may trigger the problem with this new Verclsid.exe component (which is meant to verify that ActiveX controls are not spyware/viruses, by the look of it).
Might be worth running some anti-spyware and anti-virus scans just in case, even if it doesn't turn out to be the cause.
Thanks for your responses. In the end I restored my system drive from a backup that predated the Windows update and now everything is OK. I have no way of knowing if it was that vercslid.exe file or not unless I install the Windows update again (it certainly wasn't spyware or a Trojan - I am paranoid about them and my system is very clean - famous last words?) Having switched off auto updates as soon as I had restored the drive, I now have the update icon glaring reproachfully at me from the tray - I will leave it a while before I give it the go ahead!
After having read of the multiple security issues that the latest Windows update was supposed to correct, I did install it and the right-click context menu promptly stopped working. I verified that it was vercslid.exe that was at issue by killing the process - which restored right-click functionality.
The Microsfot bulletin Jon has pointed to pinpoints HP Share to Web services as the real culprit - since this is not something I use I just renamed the appropriate folder and now the offending program is not launched and all works OK.
Verclsid.exe is part of Microsoft's attempt to comply with a ruling in a lawsuit case brought by Eolas corporation. Eolas (through exclusive license from the University of California Berkeley) own the rights to a U.S. patent that covers any technology that automatically launches a program from within a browser, among other things. Yes a patent was actually granted for this in the early-mid 1990s. The court battle has been going on since 1998, it is still somewhere in appeals and a second trial also looms (the patent had to be reviewed). Microsoft has recently lost a lot of ground in this battle.
To comply with this patent, and to avoid paying an lot of money (going forward) to Eolas in licensing, Microsoft has chosen to break a feature in Internet Explorer (which if you remember from Microsoft's anti-trust lawsuit is integrated with Windows XP). Microsoft released a non-critical software update last month on Microsoft patch day (always the second Tuesday of the month) that implemented their "fix". As such, the non-critical update was not one that would have been auto-updated by Windows Update (one would have to actually go to the Windows Update website). However this month, Microsoft released an IE Security roll-up that includes the updated files from last months optional update.
The "fix" makes IE prompt the user when loading a web page that attempts to auto-launch an ActiveX control (which is legally a program external to the HTML browser), before the ActiveX object is permitted to load. However, this behavior may play itself out in other areas of the Windows XP/2003 operating systems because of the close IE integration.
The behavior of the fix closely resembles the old spyware trick of an ActiveX control prompting you to "fix your PC problems by clicking this button". And as such, is being flagged by many applications as spyware. It also conflicts with a wide array of HP printing and scanning software (which recently has become quite bloated an unwieldy anyway).
When you read about Verclsid.exe on the MS web site, you will not get all of this, they will tell you:[quote="Microsoft"]Verclsid.exe, which validates shell extensions before they are instantiated by the Windows Shell or Windows Explorer[/quote] This "validation" though is more to check whether the user has actually clicked on a dialog or a similar manual device to ensure legal compliance of manually launching the ActiveX control, as opposed to having it launched automatically.
Long story short, instead of Microsoft paying for their patent licensing, they are trying to force everyone else in the industry to change their code to comply with their "fix" (which actually intentionally breaks, or more accurately impedes, their own ActiveX software).
Well... some Nvidia driver packages include 'helper' modules that have shell extension hooks. Presumably these are being affected. The proposed 'fix' from Microsoft seems like a stop gap measure though, as they're simply going to ignore certain 'known' conflicting handlers? So this means as people continue to have similar problems it's anyone's guess as to whether MS have already 'accomodated' XYZ application... and VERCLSID will become part of something we'll ALWAYS need to check for when people reports problems like this...