inst.PathName error while viewing the list of running Services

Published: Feb 10, 2005
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When you click View running services link in the Advanced System Information section in Help and Support Center, you may encounter the following error message while collecting Services information.

'inst.PathName' is null or not an object


This happens due to an orphaned Service, whose ImagePath registry value is missing, or if the ImagePath value contains null data. When the Help and Support Center attempts to get the file name (using the Split function) from the ImagePath (which contains the null value), the above error is shown.

To identify the problematic service which is causing the error, you may use my VBScript. Once you run the script, it lists out all the Services whose ImagePath data is null (or ImagePath value is missing) and stores the information in a text file named OrphServices.txt in C:\

Based on the results, you decide whether to remove the Service (if third-party), or to type the correct ImagePath, in case of a valid Windows service. Download ListOrphanservices.vbs

Here is how the output will look like:

Services with missing ImagePath value

Service : Alerter
Display : Alerter
Image Path :

Service : AppMgmt
Display : Application Management
Image Path :