Frequently Asked Questions

What questions does the FAQ answer?

How should I reference MSBNx?

Please reference the technical report:

C.M. Kadie, D. Hovel, and E. Horvitz. MSBNx: A Component-Centric Toolkit for
Modeling and Inference with Bayesian Networks. Microsoft Research Technical Report MSR-TR-2001-67, July 2001. (Word format, PDF format)

Can I use MSBN3 with C# and other .Net languages? Are there samples?

Yes, .Net languages can use use ActiveX/COM libraries such as MSBN3. This zip file contains the MSBNx sample code in C#:

When I run MSBNx, I immediately get the error message "Run time error '13'; type mismatch." What should I do?

Go to page and install the updated Windows Scripting engine (version 5.5).

When I try to download MSBNx, I get a time out after a long while. What should I do?

Send a note to affirming that you agree to the End-User License Agreement and asking for an alternate download site.

Does MSBNx support influence diagrams?

No, it does not.

Influence diagrams are graphical representations of decision problems. In addition to nodes for random variables, they also include nodes for decisions/actions and utility.

A much older version of our tools did support influence diagrams, but it is no longer supported or available.

What is the difference between "MSBNx" and "MSBN3"?

MSBNx is a application program with a graphical user interface that helps people edit and evaluate Bayesian Networks.

MSBN3 is a library (specifically, an ActiveX DLL) that helps programs edit and evaluate Belief Networks. MSBN3 offers no user interface. MSBNx is built upon MSBN3. MSBN3 can also be used by other programs.

Can I use MSBN3 from C++?

C++ can use ActiveX/COM libraries via the "#import" directive. The documentation for "#import" is here. We don't have example code for using MSBN3 from C++, but this magazine article shows how to use another ActiveX/COM library from C++. For more information, try searching the web for "import directive C++".

What kinds of computers does MSBNx run on?

The MSBNx and its components run on any Windows system version from Windows 98 to Windows XP.

Does MSBNx read the files from the old MSBN32 program?

No. However, the MSBNx installation includes, in the UpdateDsc directory, a Perl script called "" to help convert old-format files into a format the MSBNx understands. For information on how to run the script, read the file "updatedsc.txt" which is also installed with MSBNx.