Installing Windows Messaging and Microsoft Fax on Windows ME

First read this warning from Microsoft and then come back here when you're ready to continue.

The procedure described below is the one I used and it works. I ran Windows Messaging and Microsoft Fax under Windows Millennium for a couple of years without any obvious problems. (I've since moved on to Windows XP, which has excellent built-in fax support.) The procedure given here is based on the method originally published by Gary Woodruff on the microsoft.public.windowsme.general newsgroup. Gary prefaces his procedure with these remarks:

Here is what I consider the best way to install MS Fax.

* I put together this installation method by putting together information provided by Hal Hostetler and additional suggestions from Mike M. Any thanks should go to them as they did the heavy lifting. :-)

This old but good program is getting old enough that it takes a little extra effort and time to do it right. There are other fax programs available that you may want to consider. But if you want MS Fax here we go.


1. Choose or create an empty folder that you’ll be working from.

2. Find MAPISTUB.DLL in the Windows\System folder and save a copy of it in your working folder.

3. If you have a fax address book (mailbox.pab) and mailbox (mailbox.pst) from a previous installation of MS Fax (they should be in the Windows folder), save copies of them in your working folder.

4. If you have Microsoft Office or Outlook (NOT Outlook Express) installed, save all your settings (including templates, macros, dictionaries, etc) in your working folder and completely uninstall ALL the programs. (This is painful but essential.)

5. Reboot.

6. Install Windows Messaging. Since the copy on the Win98/98SE CD is getting dated, you should download and use "Windows Messaging Update 1" EXUPDUSA.EXE, which can be found at (This version seems to install without some of the problems of the earlier versions.) Unpack the file EXUPDUSA.EXE into your working folder and run it.

Note added 8 March 2001: The Microsoft ftp site given above seems to have problems sometimes and exupdusa.exe may be unavailable. If so, there is a zipped copy of it here: (It's 3,041,904 bytes.) Download the file, unzip and unpack it into your working folder, and run it.

7. Reboot immediately.

8. Run Outlook Express and be sure that the program is still the default mail handler. If necessary, go to Tools > Options to correct this.

9. Reboot.

10. Copy AWFAX.EXE from the Win98 CD folder Tools\Oldwin95\Message\US into your working folder. Rename the file MSFAX.EXE. (This is to get around the "You can not install" error message that you get when you try and install AWFAX.EXE under WinMe.)


 Do not try and install AWFAX.EXE from the CD. It won’t.

 Do not try and install AWFAX.EXE without renaming it. It won’t.

 Do not try and install the international version of WMS.EXE on the Win98 CD. (Doing so can mess up your Windows Media Player installation horribly.)

11. Run the renamed file to install MS Fax.

12. Find and run AWADPR32.EXE. It should be in the Windows\System folder. (You can also do this later if the fax printer doesn’t appear in Printers after the Messaging/MS Fax setup.)

13. Reboot.

14. If you uninstalled Office or Outlook, reinstall them now and restore the settings/files that you saved. Verify that everything is working correctly.

15. During the installation process, MAPISTUB.DLL will probably have been erased from the Windows\System folder. Put the saved copy of it back.

16. If you saved copies of mailbox files from a previous installation of MS Fax, go to the Windows folder and rename mailbox.pab to mailboxorg.pab and mailbox.pst to mailboxorg.pst. Then copy your own mailbox files into this folder. If you did not have a previous installation of MS Fax, you also need to add these two files to your Windows Messaging Profile:

• Start Windows Messaging.

• Tools > Services > And follow the directions on the screen. (Thanks to Mark for pointing this out to me.)

17. Click on the "Inbox" icon on your desktop to start MS Fax and verify that your address book and mailbox are intact. Adjust your settings ("Tools > Options" and "Tools Microsoft Fax Tools > Options") to however you want them. Exit the program.

18. Reboot.

19. If a folder called "Exchange" appears in the root directory, you can delete it and all its contents.

20. After you're sure that everything is working right, delete the working folder.

With grateful thanks to Gary Woodruff, Hal Hostetler, and Mike M. from microsoft.public.windowsme.general!

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