Microsoft Agent 2.0

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Microsoft Agent
AgentSvrIconEnlarged64px.png
MSAgent2.0Build2202PropertiesMenu.png
Screenshot of the Properties menu in Microsoft Agent 2.0.
NameMicrosoft Agent
Developer(s)Microsoft
Initial releaseOctober 12th, 1998 (23 years ago)
Latest version6.1.7600.16426
Latest version release dateSeptember 21st, 2009 (12 years ago)
Written inC++
Operating systemMicrosoft Windows
Discontinued?Yes

Microsoft Agent 2.0 is the latest version and current release of Microsoft Agent. It is an upgrade to Microsoft Agent 1.5, its predecessor. It featured many changes and also revamped the Microsoft Agent API to the point where most code made for Microsoft Agent 1.5 specifically would not run properly or not run at all if Microsoft Agent 2.0 is installed over Microsoft Agent 1.5. This is also the first public release of Microsoft Agent to install itself in the WINDOWS/WINNT directory instead of the Program Files/Program Files (x86) directory. It is also the first public release to use "CHARS" as the name of the folder ACS files go in, as Microsoft Agent 1.5 used a folder named "Characters".

Development

Pre-release and final builds

The first available build of Microsoft Agent 2.0 is in Windows 2000 build 1723. In Windows 2000 build 1701, Microsoft Agent 1.7 was included, which means Microsoft may have skipped 1.8 and 1.9 or they were in the in-between and undiscovered builds. The version of Microsoft Agent 2.0 inside of Windows 2000 Build 1723 is version 2.0.0.1114. This build has a mention of Microsoft Agent 1.6 inside of it and also has the taskbar icon that comes up when AgentSvr.exe is running removed. This build also faces the same issues as Microsoft Agent 1.7 and will cause MASH, BonziBuddy, and other Microsoft Agent programs to crash.

The next available build is Microsoft Agent 2.0.0.1330 which was found inside of Windows 2000 Build 1773. It introduced the character gallery dialog box which is featured in the final release (build 2202) and also added the colored Microsoft Agent logo. However, it still has the same issues as 1114. The next build is Microsoft Agent 2.0.0.1527, and is extremely similar to the previous build with the exception of all the dialog boxes being moved to a DLL and also including the "intl" folder.

The next available build after this is Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2031, which added the Microsoft Speech Recognition microphone icon and removed all mentions of Microsoft Agent 1.6. This build also fixed the issues with 1.5 characters and programs crashing but 2.0 characters and programs would still crash. This also happened in the next build Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2115, where the only difference between the two builds were bug fixes.

The final release build is Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2022, which became available for download on Microsoft's website on October 12th, 1998. It also became the most common and distributed build of Microsoft Agent, distributed in almost every Microsoft Agent program and download link.

Post-release builds

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Despite Microsoft Agent 2.0 already having its initial release with build 2202, builds were still developed after the release. The first build to be released afterwards was Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2209, which only contained bug fixes.

Non 2.00.0.xxxx builds

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Versions of Microsoft Agent present inside of Windows Vista and Windows 7 both had different build numbers instead of the standards 2.00.0.xxxx format. Microsoft Agent 5.2.3790 is one notable example of this in Windows XP x64, and later also Vista. Microsoft Agent 6.1.7600.16426 is also a notable example and is the build that is installed when the user chooses to install Microsoft Agent Hotfix for Windows 7.

Builds

Build Number Earliest known compilation date Source Notes/Issues Link
Microsoft Agent 2.0.0.1114 December 11th, 1997 Windows 2000 Build 1723.1 Mentions Microsoft Agent 1.6, removed 1.x taskbar icon, causes Microsoft Agent 1.5 and 2.0 programs to crash 1114.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.0.0.1330 March 14th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1773.1 Adds the character gallery dialog box, adds 2 colored icons, same crash issue as 1114 1330.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.0.0.1527 April 29th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1796.1 First build to include the intl folder, similar issues to 1527 but some programs do open but crash once an agent is loaded, moves all dialog boxes into a DLL 1527.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2031 September 2nd, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1888.1 Adds microphone icon, removes mentions of Microsoft Agent 1.6, 1.5 Agents and programs work but 2.0 Agents and programs crash 2031.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2115 September 27th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1902.1, Windows ME RTM Bug fixes 2115.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2202 October 2nd, 1998 Microsoft Agent 2.0 setup The most common release of Microsoft Agent, formerly hosted on Microsoft's MS Agent download page, included with most 2.0 applications MSagent.exe x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2209 October 15th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1911.1 Bug fixes 2209.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2317 December 11th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 1946.1 Untested 2317.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2526 December 11th, 1998 Windows 2000 Build 2031.1 Untested 2526.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.2927 June 26th, 1999 Windows 2000 Build 2072.1 Untested 2927.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.3106 September 8th, 1999 Windows 2000 build 2128.1, Neptune build 5111.6 Untested 3106.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.0.3422 October 30th, 1999 Windows 2000, Windows XP (RTM) Untested 3422.zip x86-32 version
3422_amd64.zip x86-64 version
3422.zip IA-64 (Itanium) version
Microsoft Agent 5.2.3790.1240 March 24th, 2005 Windows XP Professional x64 Edition RTM Entire program ported to x64 3790.1240.zip x86-64 version
Microsoft Agent 5.2.3790.1241 November 2nd, 2006 Windows Vista RTM Uses SAPI 5.3 and supports Aero 3790.1241_32-bit.zip x86-32 version
winvistaagent.zip x86-64 version
Microsoft Agent 5.2.3790.1242 February 16th, 2007 Windows XP Professional x64 Edition SP2 Appears to be a more XP-friendly version of 5.2.3790.1241. 5237901242.zip x86-64 version
Microsoft Agent 2.00.3427 April 13th, 2008 Windows XP build 2600.5512 (Windows XP SP3 RTM) Most up-to-date non-SAPI 5 version of Microsoft Agent, gives a user warning when opening a Microsoft Agent 1.5 character agent3427.zip x86-32 version
Microsoft Agent 6.1.7600.16426 September 21st, 2009 Microsoft Agent Hotfix for Windows 7 Latest version of Microsoft Agent, previously available on Microsoft's website 395040_intl_x64_zip.exe (Win7 only) x86-64 version
395039_intl_i386_zip.exe (Win7 only) x86-32 version
win7agent.zip (files that work on non-7 versions) x86-64 version

Trivia

  • Microsoft Agent 2.0 is the default Microsoft Agent installed on old Windows versions.
    • The only known exception to this is Microsoft Agent 1.7, which was in a beta release of Windows 2000.
  • For some unknown reason, early Microsoft Agent 2.0 betas use 2.0.0 at the beginning of their versions while Microsoft Agent Build 2202 uses 2.00.0 at the beginning of its version number.
  • Microsoft Agent 2.0 has the most available builds of any release due to the fact that some of these builds were included in Windows betas.
  • Not all Microsoft Agent builds are available in Windows betas as it appeared that Microsoft only occasionally updated the Microsoft Agent after each build. This is also why some builds may contain the same version of Microsoft Agent before the version number changes again.
  • The most common build of Microsoft Agent 2.0, Build 2202, is over one thousand builds away from the latest build.
  • It is unknown why Microsoft never updated the 2.0 installer to include the newer builds.