PHP on Windows: workaround for a command-line error (MSVCR71.DLL is missing)

I’m currently writing a tutorial on how to install, test and use the PHP symfony framework on Windows Web Server 2008.

In order to install it, I start from a raw Windows Server installation, with IIS role not enabled.

I download Microsoft Web Platform Installer (WebPI) 2.0 RTM from this link, and only select PHP 5.2.11.

WebPI selects all dependencies, and install goes fine.

Execution of phpinfo.php I created in C:\inetup\wwwroot is fine.


When I open a command prompt, CD to \inetpub\wwwroot, type “PHP phpinfo.php”, and get the blocking error:

This application has failed to start because MSVCR71.dll was not found. Re-installing the application may fix the problem.

See picture:     Figure 4.1 - PHP - MSVCR71.DLL not found

If we don’t do anything, the execution of PHP.EXE hangs on the absence of MSVCR71.DLL. It’s annoying, as all symfony commands rely on PHP.EXE command line. So we must find that DLL file, and install it at the correct place.

This MSVCR71.DLL is an old version of the Microsoft Visual C++ runtime, dated back to the 2003 era. It is contained in the .Net Framework 1.1 redistributable package.

To download the .Net Framework 1.1 redistributable package, just go to:

After install, the file we’re looking for is installed in the following directory :

Just copy the MSVCR71.DLL to the following destination:
-on x64 systems: in C:\windows\syswow64 directory;
-on x86 systems: in C:\windows\system32 directory,

You now can uninstall the .Net Framework 1.1.

Then, we can run PHP.EXE from the command prompt without error.



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