WD SSD Dashboard version 3.0.2.37 wont install, strange behavior

I’ve read several articles about WD SSD Dashboard not installing, but most of them seemed to throw an error message back to the user. Mine does not.

First, some unusual things about my computers:
I disable ipv6 with a registry setting, I disable uac with a registry setting, I change the default system and user temp folders to something easier to browse to.
However, I enabled uac and ipv6 again, and the problem still happens.

My problem is:
I am running several computers with windows 10 pro x64 v1909 (and one with Windows 10 v2004).
I downloaded the latest WD SSD Dashboard version 3.0.2.37 of “WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe” from Western Digital website.
When I run “WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe” as administrator, nothing visible happens. EXCEPT that the cursor blue spinning circle shows up and disappears rapidly, repeatedly, and very quickly. This typically indicates that a new process is spawning.
When I first saw this today, I thought it was downloading the update, so I left it running for a few hours (I have a slow connection). Now, I know it was not downloading at all…
Soon my hard drive filled up because a process “dashboardsetup.exe” had made (literally) thousands of copies of “WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe” (or in some cases “DashboardSetup.exe”) in my system’s temp folder in unique folders with names like:
(This sample is over the course of a few seconds)…
c:\temp2\u2kc.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u3po.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u408.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u6hg.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u6zg.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u70g.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u75g.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u75s.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u77k.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u78w.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u79c.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7b8.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7bo.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7c8.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7fk.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7l8.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7rs.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7tc.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7uc.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7vc.0\DashboardSetup.exe
c:\temp2\u7wc.0\DashboardSetup.exe

I also noticed in taskmgr.exe, that “dashboardsetup.exe” process is (rapidly and endlessly) stopping and restarting (changing PID #s).

I find that this same behavior happens on my other computers that have a previous WD SSD Dashboard version v2.5.1.0 already, whether I download WD SSD Dashboard version 3.0.2.37 of “WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe” from Western Digital website, or whether I use the WD SSD Dashboard version v2.5.1.0 automatic update feature.

It seems like there is a glitch in the WD SSD Dashboard version 3.0.2.37 of “WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe”?

So I am going to be contacting WD support to find out about this problem, soon (they’re closed right now).
I want to know how can I get the latest version installed on all of my computers?

ONE BIG COMPLAINT I HAVE IS WHY WESTERN DIGITAL FEELS THE NEED TO USE A STUB INSTALLER THAT DOWNLOADS THE ENTIRE PACKAGE EACH TIME. With slow internet and several computers, this is annoying to me, and I wish there were an official offline installer like other software providers use. I guess Western Digital is probably trying to make sure that everyone gets the latest version, but it still “stinks” when issues like this happen. But I digress… :slight_smile:

So I was able to figure out how to get WD SSD Dashboard v2.5.1.0 manually transferred and installed on a machine that does not have any WD SSD Dashboard, and thought I would share that with the community. I think some of the community members said that they were able to install an old v1.something of the product as well. But here’s how I transferred mine:
NOTE: I have the same WD BLUE 3D SSD drives in each machine. I’m not sure if the same WD hardware is required or not?
(Insert standard registry disclaimer here! Be sure to back up your registry beforehand, and if you’re not familiar with the registry, you should get in touch with someone who is able to help you, etc.)

  1. Copy the contents of “C:\Program Files (x86)\Western Digital” on a machine with working WD SSD Dashboard v2.5.1.0 to “C:\Program Files (x86)” on the machine without WD SSD Dashboard.
  2. On the machine with a working copy of WD SSD Dashboard v2.5.1.0, open the registry, and export the following registry structure to a file: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Western Digital\SSD Dashboard
  3. On the machine without WD SSD Dashboard, DOUBLE CLICK (to import) the exported registry file you created in step 2. Choose yes to integrate those settings into your registry.
  4. Now run program “C:\Program Files (x86)\Western Digital\SSD Dashboard\WesternDigitalSSDDashboard.exe”
    This worked for me!
    I hope it does for you, too!

At least I can run a version of the Dashboard on my machines now. I would prefer it to be the most recent version, but I can settle for now for an older, working version.

Hope this information helps someone out! I hate to figure all this out and not share it!

Please try the 3.0.2.37 installer without changing the default temp folders. Dashboard has had issues installing before when users change their temp folders, it is a bug we thought was fixed with a previous release but the issue must have crept back in.

After Dashboard is installed you can change your temp folders back to your preference. The location only matters for the installation.

Also make sure to use DashboardSetup.exe from the latest link to the installer when attempting to install 3.0.2.37. Older installers you have from previous installations will not work properly. Installer version should be 3.1.2.0 as of today.

When you tried to install did you do it through Dashboard in-app update from 2.5.0.0 or did you do it with a new installer from the site? The in-app update should have handled getting the correct installer for you in order to update, that is why I ask.

WesternDigitalSSDDashboardSetup.exe is the old installer, which had the bug you reference. Please download the latest (DashboardSetup.exe) or upgrade from the Dashboard App, which will download the latest installer…

Thanks for your responses @LostLinuxGuy and @RonW(WDStaff)!
Here’s some answers to your questions, and new information from my further testing, tonight:

NOTE: To reduce detail repetition in this post and thread, I am now informally dubbing this “strange behavior” as the “temp folder bug”. It is characterized by the following symptoms (when I set the Windows temp folders to my desired temp folder (I set them all to the same folder if that matters any)): no application splash screen (instead, the windows cursor icon rapidly changing (between “wait” and “normal”)), process pid rapidly changing, temp folder rapidly filling up with randomly-named folders each containing a ~4MB copy of the stub installer until hard drive is full).

@LostLinuxGuy
TLDR:
Thanks for the tip!
CHANGING THE TEMP FOLDERS BACK TO THE ORIGINAL WINDOWS DEFAULT TEMP FOLDERS FIXED THE PROBLEM (If anyone else needs them, I listed them below)!
However, even in the latest version of the WD Dashboard app, the “temp folder bug” still exists.
SUMMARY #1: It seems like both “dashboardsetup.exe” and “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” exhibit the “temp folder bug”.
SUMMARY #2: It seems like the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 in-app updater is not dynamically downloading the latest installer(?) but is instead hardcoded to download/use “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” maybe? But I have confirmed on my systems that THE IN-APP UPDATE PROCESS definitely still exhibits the “temp folder bug”.

Read on for DETAILS…
(SUCCESSES)
I changed my Windows User TEMP and TMP environment variables back to %userprofile%\appdata\local\temp
I changed my Windows System TEMP and TMP environment variables back to %systemroot%\temp
I ran the DashboardSetup.exe (v3.0.2.37, release date 2020-09-14) I was using on Oct3 and it appears to be working (I received splash screen, which I had not before!)!
(So I cancelled it to do more testing).
Then I ran the current DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08) I downloaded tonight and it appears to be working (I received splash screen)!
(So I cancelled it to do more testing).

(DEFEATS)
Then I changed my my User TEMP and TMP environment variables and my System TEMP and TMP environment variables back to my preferred temp folder.
Then I ran the current DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08) and it exhibits the same exact “temp folder bug” I originally described on Oct3. :frowning:
So there still seems to be the “temp folder bug” in the latest version of DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08).

FYI: To download the latest version of the installer, I go to support.wdc.com, click “downloads”, click “Western Digital Dashboard” and then click the “download” button. On Oct3 and today, this yielded a “DashboardSetup.exe” download.

When I started this topic writeup on Oct3 (with the temp folders set to my preferred temp folder), I also attempted to use the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 “New Application Available” Notification link (what you call the in-app update) and the same exact “temp folder bug” occurred at that time.

By the way, to anyone out there experiencing the same “temp folder bug”, you can easily get it to stop by issuing one of two windows commands: “taskkill /T /F /im dashboardsetup.exe” and “taskkill /T /F /im westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe”. Other ways to get it to stop: maybe logging off / signing off, or definitely by rebooting your computer. But in my opinion, the commands are easier (I put them in a bat file with a “pause” command as the last command and double click it when I need it). I was not able to use task manager (taskmgr) to kill the rogue process, because the rogue process pid changes so rapidly that you cannot focus on it long enough to click the end task button. (That exe terminates and a new one starts, causing your taskmgr selection to lose focus in the exe to kill).

@RonW(WDStaff)
(please also reference discussion just above for some answers to your questions, other answers below)
I tested, and the current DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08) only works when the temp folders are set to windows defaults.
When the current DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08) is set to my desired temp folder, the “temp folder bug” still manifests.

On my Oct3 writeup in this thread, (with temp folders set to my temp folder) I had originally tried to use the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 “New Application Available” Notification link (the in-app update) and the same “temp folder bug” occurred.
I tried it again today while writing this. (With temp folders set to my temp folder) I tried to use the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 “New Application Available” Notification link (the in-app update) and again, after it (seemingly) downloaded something from the internet (with a progress bar) for about 30 seconds (presumably the stub installer) and then I pressed Ok when it prompted, the same “temp folder bug” occurred.

AN OBSERVATION ABOUT WHICH EXE IS BUGGING OUT:
SUMMARY #1: It seems like both “dashboardsetup.exe” and “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” exhibit the “temp folder bug”
SUMMARY #2: It seems like the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 in-app updater is not dynamically downloading the latest installer(?) but is instead hardcoded to use “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” maybe? But it definitely still exhibits the “temp folder bug”.

When I killed the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 in-app “temp folder bug” with my taskkill bat file, I noticed in the console output that there was no “dashboardsetup.exe” process, only “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” process:
((
taskkill /T /F /im dashboardsetup.exe
ERROR: The process “dashboardsetup.exe” not found.
taskkill /T /F /im westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe
SUCCESS: The process with PID 12116 (child process of PID 8568) has been terminated.
))

When I killed the current DashboardSetup.exe (v3.1.2.5 (Installer 4.0.2.0), release date 2020-10-08) “temp folder bug” with my taskkill bat file, I noticed in the console output that there was no “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” process, only “dashboardsetup.exe” process:
((
taskkill /T /F /im dashboardsetup.exe
SUCCESS: The process with PID 9712 (child process of PID 13228) has been terminated.
taskkill /T /F /im westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe
ERROR: The process “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” not found.
))

When I killed the Oct3 DashboardSetup.exe (v3.0.2.37, release date 2020-09-14) “temp folder bug” with my taskkill bat file, I noticed in the console output that there was no “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” process, only “dashboardsetup.exe” process:
((
taskkill /T /F /im dashboardsetup.exe
SUCCESS: The process with PID 9712 (child process of PID 13228) has been terminated.
taskkill /T /F /im westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe
ERROR: The process “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” not found.
))

REPEAT FINAL SUMMARY:
CHANGING THE TEMP FOLDERS BACK TO THE ORIGINAL WINDOWS DEFAULT TEMP FOLDERS FIXED THE PROBLEM (If anyone else needs them, I listed them above)!
However, even in the latest version of the WD Dashboard app, the “temp folder bug” still exists.
SUMMARY #1: It seems like both “dashboardsetup.exe” and “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” exhibit the “temp folder bug”.
SUMMARY #2: It seems like the Western Digital SSD Dashboard v2.6.0.0 in-app updater is not dynamically downloading the latest installer(?) but is instead hardcoded to use “westerndigitalssddashboardsetup.exe” maybe? But THE IN-APP UPDATE PROCESS definitely still exhibits the “temp folder bug”.

By posting this much information, I hope it can help someone else with the problem or even WD programmers to find and fix the “temp folder bug”!