Tech Support for Win95/98/ME versions of:
Magic Folders (MF)
Encrypted Magic Folders (EMF)
This for the Win95/98/ME version
For XP questions click
Keep in mind there are very few problems (if any)
that won't be corrected by uninstalling the program. If you suspect one of our programs is interfering with other
programs or functions then uninstall (using DISABLE on your KeyDisk, or the Uninstall program in the program),
and reboot. If the problem doesn't go away then it wasn't our program that was causing the problem. None of our
programs mess with anything (including the registry or disk structure) that would linger after an uninstall. I
mention this because occasionally we get people who are totally convinced that one of our programs is messing up
their computer, only to find later that it wasn't our program at all. Uninstalling will tell.
If you can't find an answer here then you can request tech support. But please
check here first.
Please select the question or topic that most closely
resembles your question.
or "Need MSVBVM50.DLL" message
You need to install the VB5 runtime files.
Get them -here-.
Get vbrun300.zip and extract it into your \WINDOWS\SYSTEM folder.
Then get either emf3.exe (for EMF) or mfd3.exe
(for Magic Folders), extract the files and then run INSTALL.EXE
Download COMDLG32.ZIP and extract COMDLG32.OCX from it into \WINDOWS\SYSTEM
Any problems with Win98?
EMF and MF work fine in Win98.
I'm using so-and-so disk utilities
- any known problems?
After over hundreds of thousands of downloads the
only disk utility we've found that's stupid enough to delete your hidden folders and files is the one we protect
against and warned you about during installation: CHKDSK We had some errors in McAfee's Virus Scan
we had to work around, but they wouldn't affect your hidden files or folders even in the worst situation.
Something about Mijenix products also makes them incompatible with MF or EMF, but it won't affect your files -
you just have to choose which you want to use - ours or theirs.
What type of encryption does
This is discussed in EMF's "Help" file.
Getting "need vbrun300.dll"
You need to get VBRUN300.DLL and put it in your
Windows directory. Get VBRUN300.ZIP
. Extract VBRUN300.DLL from the .ZIP file and put it in your \WINDOWS\SYSTEM folder and then run MAGIC.EXE.
Not enough memory, or it goes
to DOS, when I run MAGIC.EXE or INSTALL.EXE
You have an old or bad VBRUN300.DLL. Get
VBRUN300.ZIP. Extract VBRUN300.DLL from the .ZIP file and put
it in your \WINDOWS\SYSTEM folder. Then use "Find" to locate any other VBRUN300.DLL files that
may be on your system and delete them. Reboot, and then run MAGIC.EXE.
Any problems with FAT32?
None at all..
My registration no longer works.
If you registered before July 2000: The key to
your registration is a small file called MFD.SYS for Magic Folders, or EMF.SYS for Encrypted Magic Folders. As
long as you have the registration file in your \WINDOWS folder the program will be registered. So restore MFD.SYS
or EMF.SYS from your backups and put it in your \WINDOWS folder and everything will be fine. If you also lost the
program you can get the latest version of EMF or Magic Folders at http://www.pc-magic.com/dl.htm
If you can't find MFD.SYS or EMF.SYS we can verify
your registration and email or mail you a new one for $5. Send email to email@example.com requesting a replacement,
how you want to receive it, which program it is for, your name and address, and authorization to use your credit
If you registered after June 2000: The key to your
registration is the registration number we supplied when you registered. Just select "Register" and then
"Input Registration Number" from within the program. If you've lost your registration number we can verify
your registration and email or mail you a new one for $5. Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org requesting a replacement,
which program it is for, your name and address, and authorization to use your credit card.
Magic Folders registration
doesn't work on EMF?
EMF is not the same program as Magic Folders. Your
Magic Folders registration will not work with EMF. You can upgrade to EMF for $30 (the difference between EMF's
registration and Magic Folders) or you can just uninstall EMF and reinstall Magic Folders which you can get from
http://www.pc-magic.com/mfd.exe Backup your MFD.SYS file (the key to your registration)
and put it in with MAGIC.EXE after Magic Folders is reinstalled. Your registration will be active again.
If you wish to upgrade to EMF, see the next question.
How do I upgrade from Magic
Folders to EMF?
You can upgrade from Magic Folders to EMF for $30,
which is the difference between the two registration fees.
If you wish to update your Magic Folders registration
or upgrade from Magic Folders to EMF then please -click here- Any other method of registering will charge you the full amount.
Err97 message after installing.
Err97 means that MF.EXE isn't being loaded as it
should. Error 97 indicates Magic Folders is not loaded in memory. The first thing to do is get the latest version
from our WEB site: http://www.pc-magic.com/dl.htm
Also check to make sure there is a line in your
AUTOEXEC.BAT file that runs MF.EXE, or whatever you renamed it during installation. Verify that the line points
to the MF.EXE file. Some users move the Magic Folders files without updating the line in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file
that loads MF.EXE. Also check to make sure that part of your AUTOEXEC.BAT file gets executed. Some users have AUTOEXEC.BAT
files that are set up for different boot options and the place where MF.EXE is loaded is one of the sections that
doesn't get executed during the normal boot process.
Also check the [386enh] section in the SYSTEM.INI
file. It should have a "DEVICE=" statement that points to MF.EXE (or whatever you renamed it during installation).
Make sure it either points to a valid MF.EXE file or the MF.EXE is in the Windows folder.
If you need to uninstall use DISABLE on your KeyDisk.
Installation fails with "Unable
to copy all files...." message
EMF: Get the latest version from http://www.pc-magic.com/emf.exe
Magic Folders: Make sure you've extracted MAGIC.EXE
(and aren't running it from within the .ZIP archive as some Zip programs allow). If that still doesn't work then
create a folder called "C:\EMF1435", extract the files into that folder, and then run MAGIC.EXE.
MSCOMM.VBX error when running
MF and EMF: Get the latest version (should fix
the problem) or try copying MSCOMM.VBX to your \WINDOWS\SYSTEM folder and try again.
"Can't open SigFile"
The program attempts to create a small file called
"C:\(C)RSE". This error occurs if it can't create the file. Maybe C: drive is full?
Hot-key not working
We submit our request to establish a hot-key to
Windows. Sometimes it doesn't grant the request. You can set it manually by doing the following:
- Right click on "Start"
- Click on "Open"
- Double click on the "Programs" folder
- Double click on the "Accessories" folder
- Right click on the Encrypted Magic Folders icon
- Select "Properties"
- Click on the "Shortcut" tab
- Change the "Shortcut key"
- Click on "OK" to finish
Windows may not honor your request either, so keep
trying different hot-keys until one works.
How do I install the latest
For EMF get the latest from http://www.pc-magic.com/emf.exe and just extract it over your current version. Currently EMF upgrades are free.
For Magic Folders get the latest from http://www.pc-magic.com/mfd.exe and just extract it over your current version. Updates
are free for 6 months after your registration. After that $10 will extend your free updates for 6 months. If you
don't want to update then click here and
download the latest version that is within six months of your registration and just extract it over your current
Some filenames remain scrambled
in EMF encrypted folders.
EMF Version 97.07 or earlier: Some people have
found that some of the filenames in their encrypted folders have not unscrambled and now have names that begin
with "~^~", for example "~^~abcd.baa".
First, I want you to know that your data is safe
-the files are not encrypted, its just the file names that are scrambled. Here's what to do:
- Get the latest version of EMF from http://www.pc-magic.com/emf.exe
- If you have EMF installed, just extract this new
version over your current installation.
- After rebooting, try removing the affected folder
from your hidden folder list.
- If that doesn't work then try the DECRYPT.EXE
in this new version to see if it will recover the filenames.
- If not, then check the affected folder(s) for
a file that starts ~^~0DIR." and ends with an extension the same as the scrambled files. If it's there, and
bigger than 0 bytes then we can recover your files. If there's a ~^~0DIR.??? file with another extension then we
may also be able to recover. If there are no ~^~0DIR files then you'll have to try and rename them using your backups
(check the file sizes) as a guide. The ~^~0DIR file will have the SYSTEM, HIDDEN, and READ-ONLY attributes set
so make sure Explorer is displaying those files or you won't be able to see it.
- If you find any ~^~0DIR.??? file(s) make backups
of them, and if you wish, send me a copy and I'll may be able to make a translation list telling you what the files
should be renamed.
The older version of EMF that you were using kept
the scrambled filenames in those ~^~0DIR.??? files. But no matter how much we protected them, files are files and
as such were susceptible to corruption. All versions of EMF after and including 97.07a utilize a new filename scrambling
method that doesn't save the original filenames in files and therefore isn't vulnerable to file corruption.
EMF locks up at shutdown,
or when hiding folders.
It's not locked up. It's just scrambling or unscrambling
filenames, but it does take up most of the computer resources while it's doing it so that it may seem like the
computer is locked up. For some reason Win95 slows down significantly when unscrambling folders with a lot of files.
(Win98 fixes this) The best way to get around this is to spread the files over several directories or to disable
As a test we calculated the time it would take
to scramble 1000 filenames on a 486-66. When all the files were in one directory it took a whopping 31 seconds.
When spit into 2 directories (of 500 files each) it took 16 seconds. And when split into 4 directories (of 250
files each) it only took 9 seconds. All for the same number of files.
My password is not working
Make sure you enter your password using the same
case. For example, "password" is not the same as "Password". If you're sure you're entering
your password correctly then the password file got corrupted somehow. Uninstall using DISABLE on your KeyDisk.
Hidden folder list is gone
- or a folder is missing
Sounds like the file containing your hidden folder
list got corrupted somehow. Uninstall using the "Uninstall" function in the program or use DISABLE on
your KeyDisk to uninstall. Reboot. Reinstall.
How do I uninstall?
If MAGIC.EXE is running then use its "Uninstall"
function. If you can't run MAGIC.EXE then use DISABLE on your KeyDisk. If you've lost your KeyDisk then see the
How do I uninstall if I've
lost my KeyDisk?
Here's how to manually uninstall Magic Folders:
- Remove line from AUTOEXEC.BAT that runs MF.EXE
(or whatever you renamed it). If you don't know how, use Notepad, open C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT, make your changes, and
then save the file.
- If you have Win95 then remove "DEVICE=MF.EXE"
line from \WINDOWS\SYSTEM.INI in the [386Enh] section.
- Remove the C:\Z___ folder and all the files in
If you made MF or EMF harder to defeat by manually
implementing any of the options suggested in their "Help" then you'll have to undo those options yourself.
Once completely uninstalled you can re-install
if you wish. I would recommend that you get the latest version from our web site: http://www.pc-magic.com
Some encrypted files remain
after uninstalling EMF.
This probably won't happen if you uninstall correctly
using DISABLE on your KeyDisk, or the Uninstall function in the program, but in any case, all you do is use DECRYPT.EXE to recover the encrypted files.
Sometimes hidden folders are
visible, although not accessible
Many programs keep their directory listings in
memory. So if you have the program do a directory search before hiding your folders the program will continue to
use the old directory information even after you hide your folders. Explorer does this. In many programs, pressing
F5 will force the program to refresh it's listings.
However, to make matters even more complicated
sometimes programs won't refresh their listings even when told to do so. This is probably because Windows notices
nothing has changed in the disk cache so it feeds the same directory information as it did previously. In EMF you
can select "Update Explorer" and "Write to Folders" in the properties menu and see if that
does the trick.
In some cases you can't even force the program
to update it's listings. For example, we did some tests hiding the "Documents" System folder. Sometimes
it would accurately reflect whether it was hidden or not, but sometimes it wouldn't. It would show the list of
documents when they were hidden (although clicking on the document wouldn't work) and sometimes it wouldn't show
the document list even tho it was visible - and we couldn't find any way to force it to update it's listing. We
can only hide/un-hide the files. We can't control how programs react to this.
MAGIC.EXE won't run because
I hid the folder it was in.
Use DISABLE on your KeyDisk to uninstall. Reboot.
I need CHKDSK access to....
(make a Windows recovery disk, etc..)
MF: Go in and click on "Temporarily enable
CHKDSK access" in the Functions menu.
EMF: Go into properties and disable "CHKDSK
Make sure you don't actually run CHKDSK with
the /F option or you could lose all your hidden files. See "Help" in the program for details.
I lost my KeyDisk. How do
I make a new one?
The latest versions of EMF and Magic Folders let
you make a new KeyDisk from within MAGIC.EXE
If you have an older version of Magic Folders then
you'll need to uninstall (using the Uninstall function in the program) and then reinstall to create a new KeyDisk.
Can I hide a system folder
- like "Favorites" ?
You can with the latest version or EMF. Get it
All my hidden folders become
visible after I enter my password.
Frankly I've never really understood this question.
But yes, when you enter your password all the folders (and their files) in your hidden folder list become quite
visible. Likewise, when you hide them they all become hidden. If you only want a subset of your folders to be visible
at any one time then create multiple accounts and put the folders in different accounts and then enter the password
of the account whose folders you want visible.
I've discovered how to defeat
MF or EMF!
There are a variety of ways MF or EMF can be defeated
using the standard installation. For suggestions on how to make the program harder to defeat see "How to make
MF (or EMF) harder to defeat" in the program's "Help".
EMF users should remember that even if EMF is defeated
your files remain encrypted and their filenames scrambled.
If you find that EMF or MF isn't hiding your files
in DOS then make sure the C:\AUTOEXEC.BAT file has a line like:
where "path" is the path to the MF.EXE
file. If MF.EXE (or whatever you named it during installation) is run in the AUTOEXEC.BAT file then your files
will be hidden in DOS as well as Windows.
You shouldn't use Magic Folders or EMF on removable
drives. Although the files and filenames would remain encrypted and scrambled on other computers (if you're using
EMF), the folders and files would not be hidden, for EMF or Magic Folders.
In addition, Magic Folders and EMF don't mark hidden
folders, they just filter file requests against your list of hidden folders. Therefore any removable media with
folders with the same name as the one you hid would have their folders hidden as well, and in the case of EMF,
their files would be encrypted too. We may in a later version include the disk ID or volume name in the hidden
folder list, but we haven't done that yet.
Many backup programs won't backup your hidden folders
unless they are visible. You should test your backup program to see if it requires the folders to be visible. Remember,
if you have multiple accounts you can't make all files visible at once, you can only make the magic folders of
one account visible at a time.
Remember if you're using EMF that because files
are only encrypted within an encrypted folder, copying a file from an encrypted folder to an unencrypted folder
decrypts the file. This is true for backups as well. You can get around this by disabling "Auto-Cryption"
from within the "Properties" menu. This temporarily disables the automatic decryption of your encrypted
files thereby allowing your backup program to copy them to your backup disk without EMF automatically decrypting
them first. You can also use this function to verify that files in your encrypted folders are really encrypted.
You can also use PW.EXE to enter your password
and disable Auto-Cryption from DOS or a batch file in preparation for doing a backup. See EMF's "Help"
Do not use MF or EMF on a file server for a LAN.
Anyone on the LAN will be able to see your "hidden" files and folders. In EMF the files in your "hidden"
folders will still be encrypted but they will be visible and others can delete, rename, copy, move, or modify them.
However, MF and EMF work great protecting files
on your local drives that are not accessible to the LAN.
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