A. Microsoft's Qfecheck utility scans your system for installed hotfixes and ensures that they're up-to-date (i.e., that the system hasn't replaced any files in the hotfix with earlier or incorrect versions). This utility is different from Hfnetchk, which connects to the Internet and checks whether your system is missing any OS, Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE), or Microsoft product updates. Qfecheck just ensures that the hotfixes you've already installed are still intact.

You can find Qfecheck at Microsoft's Web site. This utility is available for Windows XP IA64, XP Professional Edition and XP Home Edition i386, and Windows 2000 i386.

After you download and execute the file, the application installs to the \%systemroot%\system32 folder. To execute Qfecheck, open a command prompt (cmd.exe) and type

qfecheck

You can optionally use the /q (quiet) or /v (verbose) switch, depending on the level of output you require. Verbose mode displays the same information as the normal mode, unless you need to reinstall a hotfix, in which case verbose mode identifies which files you need to update.

If Qfecheck reports that some files aren't valid in a Win2K system catalog, you might need an updated sp2.cat file. This catalog file is available at Microsoft's Web site