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Invalid Class error on startup


ksmichaelsross@gmail.com
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My copy of BYE stopped working shortly after upgrading to a paid version (coincidence probably). I'm running Windows 10 Home Edition ver. 19043.1165 and have downloaded the latest copy of the BYE software 3.2.2. I have keys for the trial and the $35 version, and both give me an "Invalid Class" message when I press the validate button. Both were working, the paid version was only used once to verify that it would. " I've uninstalled and reinstalled several times, I've removed the program folder, I've rebooted, I've downloaded fresh copies of the install program and all to no avail. Both the paid the the trial keys behave the same, both display the "Invalid Class" message when I try to validate the license (that was validated at least once). I've used the trial version a number of times without incident, so this is not what I expected. A screenshot of the problem is attached.

<< LICENSE KEY DELETED >>

 

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At this point, you need to purchase another key.  Your previous key has been deactivated.

This said, your trial key is still active.  Start BYE and use your trial key and let's make sure we make it work with the trial key, then purchase a new key once you confirmed it worked.  An invalid class error is either an installation error or a Microsoft .Net error.

BTW, there is no need to uninstall and re-install going from a trial key to a purchase key, all you need to do is start BYE and click the padlock icon in the upper-right corner, and you enter your new key there.

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Changing back to the trial key that had been working was my first thought, but it gave me the same error, and afterwards I lost all thought and posted my key. In the process of preparing the laptop I plan to use for photography, I installed Stellarium, and was trying to get it to talk to my Open Astro Tracker. In that process I installed the several .NET packages (required for Stellarium, the OAT control program, the ASCOM driver for the OAT, and the ASCOM 6.5 suite). I didn't record which .NET versions were installed, but do recall allowing their installation as a prerequisite for the installation of those programs. The laptop is running an updated version of Windows 10 Home Edition.

I just installed BYE and used the trial key on the desktop that I've been using to program the OAT. It has Stellarium, ASCOM, Visual Studio Code,  and BYE works just fine (at least it launched without my camera attached, I didn't test its functionality, but am confident it will work). My desktop is also running an updated version of Windows 10 Home (version 10.0.19042). Sadly it's too big and illuminated to carry out into the night sky.

So....should I try to repair the .NET installation next, and do you have any guidance regarding how I should do that?

Thanks.

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BYE is supposed to detect if the needed .NET software is installed, so I am guessing that .NET is not your problem. In any case .NET is part of Windows, so you would have to repair or re-install Windows.

Admin previously suggested that your issue was a problem with the installation of BYE. He suggested that you re-install BYE to a different folder. Did you try that?

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6 hours ago, ksmichaelsross@gmail.com said:

Changing back to the trial key that had been working was my first thought, but it gave me the same error, and afterwards I lost all thought and posted my key. In the process of preparing the laptop I plan to use for photography, I installed Stellarium, and was trying to get it to talk to my Open Astro Tracker. In that process I installed the several .NET packages (required for Stellarium, the OAT control program, the ASCOM driver for the OAT, and the ASCOM 6.5 suite). I didn't record which .NET versions were installed, but do recall allowing their installation as a prerequisite for the installation of those programs. The laptop is running an updated version of Windows 10 Home Edition.

I just installed BYE and used the trial key on the desktop that I've been using to program the OAT. It has Stellarium, ASCOM, Visual Studio Code,  and BYE works just fine (at least it launched without my camera attached, I didn't test its functionality, but am confident it will work). My desktop is also running an updated version of Windows 10 Home (version 10.0.19042). Sadly it's too big and illuminated to carry out into the night sky.

So....should I try to repair the .NET installation next, and do you have any guidance regarding how I should do that?

Thanks.

You said "BYE works just fine"

Then there is nothing to do. It works. But you should connect your camera before claiming it works... just to be safe.

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Again, the laptop that I can carry into the night sky does not work, the desktop that I cannot carry does. Being able to operate BYE at home doesn't help me, other than to verify that it's possible to make it operate alongside the other software that I need. And, it WAS working on my laptop, it stopped working after the installation of Stellarium, the OAT control program, and the ASCOM bits. The difference was that on my desktop it was installed last, on the laptop, it was installed first.

My experience with .NET is that various programs require the installation of various .NET runtime packages, and there are repair tools for .each of the NET installations. Since the user guide says BYE was developed using .NET 4.0, If changing folders doesn't work, I'll try using the Microsoft supplied .NET repair tool.

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Back in April another user reported a similar error. They were provided some suggestions for troubleshooting, but never responded. They were trying to run BYE on a Mac through Bootcamp. Here is the thread:

I will also say that .NET is part of Windows 10 and as such there are no separate "runtime packages" to install. That said, Microsoft does offer a .NET Framework Repair tool. I have no experience with it except that it is a "use at your own risk" tool. I would think that if .NET were broken that BYE would not load at all and that other applications would also be affected.

You should also be aware that several versions of the .NET Framework can be installed side-by-side. This means that .NET 3.5, 4.0, 4.5, 4.8, and 5.0 can all be installed at the same time.

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Trying the suggestions of the forum folks

1. I uninstalled BYE and reinstalled it into a different (non-default) directory. Same "invalid class" error.

2. I downloaded and ran the Microsoft .NET 4.0 framework repair tool. It sent some logs to Microsoft, but didn't solve the problem.

3. By the installation dates, I saw that the MS C++ runtimes for the 2013 edition and the 2015-2019 editions (both x86 and x64 versions) had been installed at a point where my problems arose, so I repaired all four of those instances. Didn't solve the problem. The RED program (that turns your screen red for nighttime use) works. It appears to me that the issue is associated with the dialog that validates the software, it's been too many hours and changes, but I think it stopped working after I successfully upgraded.

4. I looked through a number of Windows event logs - not knowing what I'm looking for exactly, nothing jumped out, and there were no red flags in apps, system, or security at the time where my validation attempts were failing.

I can't tell if I'm conversing with helpful forum dwellers, the vendor, or one of the developers. I've now invested hours in trying to get this to work. It doesn't seem like it should be this hard.

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'admin ' is the owner/vendor of O'Telescope and also the principal developer of BYE and BYN. Everyone else on the forum are users, like you.

I am a retired software developer and have been a BYE user for 10 years.

If you believe that your issues started when you upgraded BYE, you can re-install older version, as long as they are 3.1.0 and newer. They are all available for download from the Download link at the bottom of this page.

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I started with a trial of BYE3.2 on the laptop in question. It worked on the laptop, connected to my 5Dmkiii and took pictures as advertised. I was planning a big sky trip and didn't know if I'd have Internet with which to validate my trial license, so I purchased the paid version which I understand doesn't require an Internet connection once validated. I did the upgrade, and then installed software for my Open Astro Tracker: Stellarium, the ASCOM suite, an ASCOM OAT driver, and OAT control. After doing that, BYE stopped working and started giving me the "invalid class" error. As an experiment, I installed BYE on my desktop because it already had all of the OAT software (even the Visual Studio Code package necessary to configure the OAT), all of the software works there. It's a totally different machine, but it does have the same Windows OS version and software.

When I changed the key back to the trial version on the laptop, I got the same "invalid class" error.

The Canon EOS software works, and even though it doesn't do what BYE does, it may be my only option at this point.

I can try downgrading to BYE 3.1. I'll do that after I copy the BYE folder from my desktop onto a USB stick and try running it on the laptop from there.

 

 

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I'm the developer of the software.

If it worked before on that same computer and no longer works, it has to be something that has changed on your computer.

It would help to know exactly where it gives you that error?

  • Is it when you start BYE?
  • When you try to connect the camera?
  • Before, during, or after the splash screen?

 

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1 minute ago, ksmichaelsross@gmail.com said:

 

I can try downgrading to BYE 3.1. I'll do that after I copy the BYE folder from my desktop onto a USB stick and try running it on the laptop from there.

 

 

That will never work.  BYE is *not* a standalone application that can be run by simply copying the folder.  BYE must be installed using the installer on the computer it will run on.

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When I start BYE, it prompts me for the software key and my username. When I press the validate key, I get the error on the validation screen and get no further.

Regards "that will never work", I've attached a snip from your documentation. I read this to mean that I could copy the BYE folder in Programs(86) to a USB stick and it would work. If not, I'd suggest rewording your doc. The doc also implies that it doesn't add entries to the registry, but it did on my laptop.

byeinstall.png

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Regards installing an older version of BYE, I installed BYE 3.1.0 in a different folder, got an "not found" error on the validation dialog. I installed BYE 3.1.5 on another different folder, got an "license activation error Internet acess is required to activate a trial key," again on the validation dialog. I'm using the Internet on the laptop to write this, so I'm pretty sure it has Internet access, and did when I was installing BYE.  So...no joy with older versions.

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13 hours ago, ksmichaelsross@gmail.com said:

When I start BYE, it prompts me for the software key and my username. When I press the validate key, I get the error on the validation screen and get no further.

Regards "that will never work", I've attached a snip from your documentation. I read this to mean that I could copy the BYE folder in Programs(86) to a USB stick and it would work. If not, I'd suggest rewording your doc. The doc also implies that it doesn't add entries to the registry, but it did on my laptop.

byeinstall.png

I should remove this fro the manual, this was true for older releases, but no more :(

BYE needs to be installed.

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I believe that the OP has 2 PCs (desktop and laptop). BYE works on the desktop, but he gets the "Invalid Class" error on the laptop.

BYE used to work but after the installation of several astronomy apps, as well as the BYE 3.2.2, BYE started failing on the laptop. I think that he is trying to go back to a previous version to get back to something that used to work for him.

He is really grasping at straws and may have made things worse by trying random remedies.

I wonder if his Anti-virus software is somehow getting in the way.

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No 3.2.2 doesn't work. The copy was another shot in the dark test. I've installed, uninstalled, copied, installed in different folders, installed older versions, installed on different computers (successfully), repaired .NET, repaired C++ runtime x2 ALL in an attempt to make 3.2.2 run on my laptop just like it did before installing Stellarium and Ascom.

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Just to be clear...3.2.2 does work on your Desktop PC, but not on your laptop. Before several upgrades and re-installs of various pieces of software BYE used to work on your laptop. Is that correct?

Also the error does not occur "at startup" as the title of your post indicates. It happens when you try to validate your license.

I help support BYE/BYN in this forum and I help support the ASCOM Platform over on the ASCOM-Talk and ASCOM-Developers forums. I have also installed the ASCOM Platform and Stellarium for friends who also use BYE. To my knowledge there have never been conflicts between BYE and those packages.

I did a Duck Duck Go search for the "Invalid Class" error. What I saw seemed to be related to a problem with Microsoft's Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) subsytem. I have no idea whether BYE uses WMI, but it may. If so, and WMI is broken on your laptop, it could explain the issue. I also read about an upgrade to .NET 4.0 of an app that was targeting x86 that used WMI and started failing because some WMI counters are 64-bit only. For that user changing their app to target AnyCPU fixed the Invalid Class error, but this is not possible for BYE because it uses the  32-bit Canon SDK. A few weeks ago a few ASCOM users started having a problem with the ASCOM Platform and it was traced to an issue with WMI. The ASCOM Platform was re-coded to not use WMI to work around the issue.

I hope some of this helps.

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3 hours ago, astroman133 said:

Just to be clear...3.2.2 does work on your Desktop PC, but not on your laptop. Before several upgrades and re-installs of various pieces of software BYE used to work on your laptop. Is that correct?

Also the error does not occur "at startup" as the title of your post indicates. It happens when you try to validate your license.

I help support BYE/BYN in this forum and I help support the ASCOM Platform over on the ASCOM-Talk and ASCOM-Developers forums. I have also installed the ASCOM Platform and Stellarium for friends who also use BYE. To my knowledge there have never been conflicts between BYE and those packages.

I did a Duck Duck Go search for the "Invalid Class" error. What I saw seemed to be related to a problem with Microsoft's Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) subsytem. I have no idea whether BYE uses WMI, but it may. If so, and WMI is broken on your laptop, it could explain the issue. I also read about an upgrade to .NET 4.0 of an app that was targeting x86 that used WMI and started failing because some WMI counters are 64-bit only. For that user changing their app to target AnyCPU fixed the Invalid Class error, but this is not possible for BYE because it uses the  32-bit Canon SDK. A few weeks ago a few ASCOM users started having a problem with the ASCOM Platform and it was traced to an issue with WMI. The ASCOM Platform was re-coded to not use WMI to work around the issue.

I hope some of this helps.

Yes. BYE works on my desktop but it stopped working on my laptop after installing ASCOM. If I click on the BYE desktop icon, I see the splash screen, then a second or two later the validation dialog. The first time this behavior presented, it was on a validated copy of BYE that heretofore hadn't required validation on every launch. The ASCOM packages were downloaded the day this issue started, so it would seem that I'd have the ASCOM version where the WMI issue had been resolved. My desktop version was downloaded and installed several days earlier, and it works...so go figure.

In any case, I appreciate your help and that you took the time to actually read my (soon to be a novel 🙂 posts it gives me another avenue to pursue. 

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Regards the method I use to enter the key...I had been entering it by typing it from the keyboard character by character taking care to copy both the character and its case. Lately, fearing an onset of carpal tunnel, I've taken to copying it from a .txt file that contains the key and my lengthy email address. Note that I've successfully entered this on my desktop computer, and successfully on the laptop prior to the onset of the issue. I am capable of entering a software key and copying the key to a txt file after removing the '-'s or spaces which I assume would cause trouble should they be pasted into the dialog box(s). At any rate, wouldn't the error be that I'd entered an invalid key should my key entering skills be deficient?

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BYE does not use the ASCOM Platform directly, and it does not use it at all until BYE is started up AND you connect BYE to an ASCOM telescope, focuser, or filter wheel. I do not know of any way for installing the ASCOM Platform to break BYE. That has never ever happened.

Something else happened about the time that you installed the ASCOM Platform? You just need to think about what that may have been.

If you launch the ASCOM Diagnostics tool you should see the version of the ASCOM Platform that you are running. The version number is displayed in bold letters when the Diagnostics main window is first displayed. Is it the same version on both computers? If the versions are the same then it would seem to support my belief that the ASCOM Platform is not the cause of your issue.

Also, I re-read the support thread about the ASCOM WMI issue and it occurred during installation of the ASCOM Platform and was fixed, but the fix has not yet been released since it affected only a very small number of users. Given that, it does not appear likely that you would have the fixed version. Reporting the Diagnostics version number from both PCs will tell. Also, a problem installing the ASCOM Platform would not affect BYE. However, if BYE uses WMI and WMI is broken, it may affect both BYE and the ASCOM Platform installer.

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Both computers have ASCOM 6.5.1.3234, so your thinking seems sound to me. I enabled WMI logging in Windows, and didn't get any error events when launching BYE, so, like you, I agree that it's probably not ASCOM that's causing the problem. At that same time, I installed the ASCOM driver for the Open Astro Tracker, and the OAT control program - neither of which seem likely culprits. 

i'm throwing in the towel. I don't know what your relationship is BYE other than what you've mentioned about support, but you've been the most helpful, and I suspect you don't benefit financially. So...I writing off my $35 for a program that never captured a single night sky image and giving up on the vendor and developer who never bothered to read more than the first sentence in any of my posts, but who nevertheless provided me with grief about not reading their red directions. And recognizing it was boneheaded on my part to post my key (a mistake I recognized seconds after pressing the submit button), having error messages appear on a validation dialog instead of on their own seems a little boneheaded to me. 

I got a 3d printer as a Fathers Day gift, on a lark, I printed the  Astro Tracker and was able to print, assemble, wire and configure the various components to make it work (and it does), including some parts that I had to draw myself in FreeCAD, all to be brought to my knees by trying to make BYE work.

I did a little web searching, found APT, downloaded the free trial, and lo and behold it works on the laptop from hell, it even has an autofocuser, and it's less expensive, so I surrender. BYE was the recommended program for the OAT, but there are others out there. My 70 year old blood pressure will be much better. 

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