KnowledgeBase Content Details

October 23, 2020


Why does the Spotfire Analyst client hang/crash when attempting to render chemical structures?


If you launch the Spotfire Analyst client and open a file containing chemical structures it hangs indefinitely and in some instances causes the Analyst client to crash, the only way to exit is to force quit the application.

Error found in the 'ChemDrawAgentHost.exe.log':


ERROR 2020-10-22 15:42:09,511 Program ChemDrawAgentHost.Program Main ChemDrawAgentHost.Program initialization failed.
System.NotSupportedException: Unable to get the window handle for the 'AxChemDrawCtl' control. Windowless ActiveX controls are not supported.


Assuming you have information links setup you will also see a similar error when/if you launch the Chemical structure search ('Tools' menu > Structure Search).

The root cause of this particular issue and error is a mismatch between the Region and Language settings i.e. if they have been changed from default e.g. from United Kingdom or United States to another setting.

If the Region setting and Regional format setting have been changed from default but the associated Preferred Language setting has not been installed/added then it leads to problems when the ChemDrawAgent host is launched. Whilst the CDAX (ChemDrawActiveX) component itself doesn't check for this, it's enforced by the OS/VS installation.

The solution is to make sure the appropriate Preferred language pack has been installed/added.

In the below screenshot, the Region setting on Windows has been set to 'Belgium' and the Regional Format set to 'English (Belgium)'.


Region Settings


In the below screenshot, the Preferred Language list DOES NOT include the 'English (Belgium)' language pack as an option. In this scenario you might expect to see the error/problem.


Language settings


Click the button to ''Add a Preferred Language pack''. Scroll or search and find the appropriate pack e.g. 'English (Belgium)' in this case and install/add it. It is not necessary to install all components of the language pack so the additional options you are given can remain unchecked.

Once added to the list, try restarting the Spotfire Analyst client and open the file containing the chemical structures, it should now work and load the data/visualisations including the rendered chemical structures.

If this does not resolve the problem please contact the PerkinElmer Informatics Support desk -

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