Pinterest Stumbleupon Whatsapp
Advertisement

How many Windows errors have you seen in the last week? Seeing a message dialogue unexpectedly pop up is a huge pain, as they’re often vague and don’t offer concrete fixes.

Whenever a new Windows version arrives, there are specific errors that crop up 8 Annoying Windows 10 Issues & How to Fix Them 8 Annoying Windows 10 Issues & How to Fix Them The upgrade to Windows 10 has been smooth for most, but some users will always encounter issues. Whether it's a flashing screen, network connectivity issues, or battery drain, it's time to resolve these problems. Read More related to the upgrade. But some PC errors are timeless, and we want to give them a good look. Next time Windows tells you to “contact your system administrator,” you’ll know how to solve these five common errors.

Before You Troubleshoot: Reboot!

Some of the fixes we’ll detail involve some time-consuming troubleshooting. Before you start working on these, reboot your computer! A simple restart fixes many issues Why Does Rebooting Your Computer Fix So Many Issues? Why Does Rebooting Your Computer Fix So Many Issues? "Have you tried rebooting?" It's technical advice that gets thrown around a lot, but there's a reason: it works. Not just for PCs, but a wide range of devices. We explain why. Read More , and only takes a minute. You might find that your problem disappears after a reboot, especially if you haven’t shut it down in a while. It’s a good idea to shut down your PC at least once a week to reduce the possibility of errors like this.

If you’re suffering from an advanced error and can’t reboot normally, check out advanced ways to restart 6 Tips for Rebooting Windows Like a Pro 6 Tips for Rebooting Windows Like a Pro Windows' strength is customization and it doesn't stop at shutting down. You can end your session or reboot your system in various ways, many offering more convenience and control than the Start menu. Read More . Should you reboot and find that the issue persists, read on to discover the solutions behind five frequent errors.

1. Windows Update Error 0x80070057

Sometimes, a specific Windows error code doesn’t give you much help. Recurring errors often spout out a different code each time, making it hard to nail down the exact cause. But there’s one error code that nearly every Windows user knows: 0x80070057. It’s been around since Windows XP and typically shows up when Windows Update runs into problems.

Advertisement

We’ve already extensively covered fixing error 0x80070057 How to Fix Windows Update Error 0x80070057 How to Fix Windows Update Error 0x80070057 This fine Windows error has been plaguing our systems since at least Windows XP. Thanks to its long standing record, many fixes have emerged. Today, we can show you exactly how to solve it. Read More , so we’ll offer a brief summary here. This error usually pops up when a backup or Windows installation fails, or when Windows Update refuses to install updates When Windows Update Is Stuck, Try This When Windows Update Is Stuck, Try This Is Windows Update giving you a headache? We have compiled seven tips to help you get it un-stuck. Read More . Solutions include renaming the SoftwareDistribution folder, editing a few Registry files, and manually replacing the corrupted files.

Windows Update is great when it works, but the errors are a pain to work through. This one is the head of them all.

2. DLL Errors

A Dynamic Link Library (DLL) is a shared file that many programs can call upon to perform some action. These are built into Windows so that every piece of software doesn’t have to create its own method of, say, printing a test page. No matter which printer software you’re using, whenever you click Print Test Page, it calls the default Windows method.

Sometimes when you try to open a program, you’ll see a message that The program can’t start because XYZ.dll is missing from your computer. Your first instinct might be to search for the referenced DLL online and download a fresh copy. However, this isn’t a good idea. For the same reasons you should check for driver updates yourself How to Find & Replace Outdated Windows Drivers How to Find & Replace Outdated Windows Drivers Your drivers might be outdated and need updating, but how are you to know? First, don't fix it if it ain't broke! If drivers do need updating, though, here are your options. Read More instead of using shady update utilities, downloading DLLs from the web can introduce more problems than it fixes. You have no guarantee that DLL sites offer updated versions, and they could sneak malware into them, too.

Even so, DLL errors aren’t often fixed through replacing one file. If you replace one file, the program might continue to throw an error about another DLL. Try a few manual steps instead.

DLL Fixes

You should uninstall and reinstall the program first, which will often solve the problem. If it’s a small program, you can do this in a few minutes. For bigger programs that take a while to reinstall, or programs you’d have to re-adjust a lot of settings for, you can wait on this step until later.

Make sure you haven’t deleted the DLL. Check the Recycle Bin for anything you’ve recently removed, and use a file recovery tool Turn Back Time: 4 Tools & Tips To Restore Deleted Files In Windows Turn Back Time: 4 Tools & Tips To Restore Deleted Files In Windows One of Windows' biggest flaws could be your rescue, should you ever accidentally delete an important file: The Windows file system does not actually delete files. Until they are overwritten, deleted files can be restored. Read More like Recuva if you permanently deleted it. If you’re certain than you didn’t delete anything or can’t find anything using recover, move onto scanning for malware What Security Software Should You Be Using in Windows 10? What Security Software Should You Be Using in Windows 10? Despite being bundled with its own security tool, Windows 10 needs additional software to keep your data secure and make your online experiences safe. But which security software should you choose for WIndows 10? Read More . Sometimes, malware can delete these files or disguise itself as a DLL file, causing errors. Run a scan with Malwarebytes Free to see if there’s foul play.

If you’re still having issues, your next option is a System Restore How System Restore & Factory Reset Work in Windows 10 How System Restore & Factory Reset Work in Windows 10 Space wasted to a recovery partition is a thing of the past. System Restore and Factory Reset have improved in Windows 10. We show you how it works. Read More . This will send your computer’s configuration back in time a few days. Try jumping back to a recent date before you noticed this problem cropping up. Reinstall the program after this if you haven’t already.

When you reach this point, you’ve confirmed that it’s a deep-rooted problem. Check for driver updates related to the software you’re using, like printer or video cards. If those don’t fix it, you should run the system file checker like you would for a corrupt Windows installation How to Fix a Corrupted Windows 10 Installation How to Fix a Corrupted Windows 10 Installation System corruption is the worst that could happen to your Windows installation. We show you how to get Windows 10 back on track when suffering from BSODs, driver errors, or other unexplained issues. Read More .

Right-click the Start Button and choose Command Prompt (Admin). Type this command to run the file checker, which will take a few minutes:

sfc /scannow

The tool will alert you if it finds any errors. If it can’t fix them, you’ll have to take the nuclear option and use the PC Reset option Should You Refresh, Reset, Restore, or Reinstall Windows? Should You Refresh, Reset, Restore, or Reinstall Windows? Ever wanted to reset Windows 7 without losing personal data? Between a factory reset and a reinstall, it was tough. Since Windows 8, we have two new options: Refresh and Reset. Which one is right... Read More to perform a repair of Windows. This will almost certainly fix the problem, but hopefully it doesn’t get this far.

3. Security Certificate Errors

Security certificates are at the center of keeping you securely connected to websites What Is a Website Security Certificate and Why Should You Care? What Is a Website Security Certificate and Why Should You Care? Read More . Website owners that use a secure HTTPS connection must pay a third-party Certificate Authority (CA) like GoDaddy or Norton to obtain a valid certificate.

Your browser keeps a list of legitimate CAs that it trusts. When you visit a secure website and its certificate matches the one your browser expects, everything proceeds smoothly. If there’s a mismatch, you see an error that the website might not be secure.

Sometimes these errors are legitimate. Perhaps the website owner forgot to renew the certificate and its expiry tipped your browser off that something was wrong. Or, if an attacker compromised a website, the certificate might not check out so your browser warns you that it’s unsafe. When these happen, you should use caution when dealing with the website unless you know you trust it. If you see these errors every time you try to visit a website, that’s a different story.

Fixing Certificate Errors

The most common cause of this is that your computer’s clock is wildly off. Because certificates have specific start and end dates, if your computer thinks it’s 2005, it doesn’t see any certificates as valid. Have a look at your computer’s time by right-clicking on the time in the System Tray and clicking Adjust date/time. In most cases, you can let Windows set the time automatically, but you can also sync all your devices with an atomic clock How to Make All Your PC Times Match With an Atomic Clock Sync How to Make All Your PC Times Match With an Atomic Clock Sync How do you ensure that your computer clock is accurate? We show you how your system clock works, how to customize its settings, and what to do if it starts displaying the incorrect time. Read More . Make sure you have the right time zone selected, too.

After you fix the time, reboot your machine. If the clock is wrong again when you boot up, the CMOS battery on your motherboard Why Does My Motherboard Have A Battery? Why Does My Motherboard Have A Battery? Whether you’re using a desktop computer or a laptop, your computer’s motherboard contains an integrated battery. Unlike a standard laptop battery, the motherboard’s battery doesn’t power your computer while you're using it. Quite the opposite,... Read More is likely dead. This little watch battery allows your machine to keep track of the time even when it’s powered off. You can get a replacement battery for cheap, but depending on your computer, it might be difficult to reach. Check Google for your specific PC model to see if it’s an easy replacement.

cmos battery

If you’ve confirmed that the time is correct and still regularly run into these errors, make sure your browser is up-to-date. Run a malware scan as well, just to make sure there’s nothing malicious around.

For an interesting read on how Lenovo abused security certificates, check out the Superfish malware story Superfish Hasn't Been Caught Yet: SSL Hijacking Explained Superfish Hasn't Been Caught Yet: SSL Hijacking Explained Lenovo's Superfish malware caused a stir, but the story's not over. Even if you removed the adware from your computer, the same vulnerabilty exists in other online applications. Read More .

4. Blue Screen Stop Errors

Blue screen errors, known as the Blue Screen of Death (BSoD), are the most infamous Windows errors of all. They occur when Windows runs into a problem that it can’t fix Don't Panic! Everything You Need To Know About Kernel Panics Don't Panic! Everything You Need To Know About Kernel Panics If you’ve used a computer, you will have no doubt encountered the Blue Screen of Death, or a kernel panic, where the machine restarts without warning, costing you all your work. Read More and simply shuts down to avoid damage.

Once filled with technical data that most people couldn’t decipher, Microsoft has revamped the blue screen into a much simpler form for Windows 8 and above. It now contains a frowning face, a basic Your PC ran into a problem message, and an error code.

Blue screens can have so many causes that it’s impossible to analyze them all. It’s important to note that a single isolated blue screen isn’t a big deal. Sometimes Windows runs into a weird problem and hits a blue screen, then never has that same issue again for months. You should only concern yourself with blue screen errors if they’re recurring.

Common Blue Screen Codes

Should you have a big problem with blue screens, there are a few codes that pop up more frequently than others that you should be aware of. If your specific error code doesn’t match any of these, a Google search should bring up more information. You can use the BlueScreenView tool to get a summary of the information Windows dumps when it crashes if you miss it the first time. The Bug Check String is the relevant error code.

windows blue screen error

  • DATA_BUS_ERROR — This error is usually caused by RAM. Check to make sure the RAM in your system is compatible with your motherboard and that it’s not defective.
  • MACHINE_CHECK_EXCEPTION — An error often caused by a faulty CPU or power supply.
  • INACCESSIBLE_BOOT_DEVICE — Occurs when Windows can’t read the hard device that your system boots from. It could have roots in a bad driver, a dying hard drive, or a boot sector virus The 7 Types of Computer Viruses to Watch Out For & What They Do The 7 Types of Computer Viruses to Watch Out For & What They Do While your computer won't need a week in bed and antibiotics, computer viruses can delete and steal your data. Let's take a look at 7 of the most common viruses out there right now. Read More .
  • HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED — Caused by general hardware or driver issues.

No matter what error you see, our general steps for troubleshooting blue screens Windows 8 Crashing? How to Easily Troubleshoot Blue Screen & Other Issues Windows 8 Crashing? How to Easily Troubleshoot Blue Screen & Other Issues Windows 8 isn't perfect. That said, most blue screens and application crashes aren't Windows' fault. Our tips will help you identify exactly what's wrong with your PC and fix it. Read More will help.

5. Access Denied Folder Errors

Not all errors are cryptic. Sometimes when you try to open a certain folder, Windows will bark at you and let you know that you don’t have appropriate permissions Windows File System Woes: Why Do I Get Access Denied? Windows File System Woes: Why Do I Get Access Denied? Ever wonder why you might get an "Access Denied" error message in Windows? It might have something to do with your file-system permissions. Read More . Assuming you’re a PC administrator, you can quickly fix this to let Windows know that you are, indeed, the owner. If you’re using a standard account 5 Tips for Managing Windows User Accounts Like a Pro 5 Tips for Managing Windows User Accounts Like a Pro Windows user accounts have evolved from isolated local accounts to online accounts with various privacy challenges. We help you sort out your accounts and find the settings that work for you. Read More , you can’t view protected system folders and other users’ files by design. Talk to whoever is in charge of your PC or log into an administrator account to access these folders.

Whenever you come across a folder that won’t let you in, right-click it in File Explorer and select Properties. Change to the Security tab, then click the button that says Advanced at the bottom. Look for the field that says Owner: near the top of the window. The name will likely be Unable to display current owner. Click the blue Change link next to this to pick a new owner.

You can choose a specific user who owns the folder, or grant access to a group (like all Administrators, Users, or Guests). Click inside the Enter the object name to select box and type your username or Administrators to let all admins in. Give the Check Names button a tap to make sure you didn’t mistype anything, and the window will throw an error if anything is off. It will also correct Administrators to PCNAME\Administrators, which is normal.

change owners windows

Click OK to accept this, and head back to the Advanced Settings window. Make sure the box that says Replace owner on subcontainers and objects below the Owner text is checked to apply these settings to every folder inside this one. One more press of OK and you’re now the rightful owner!

If you want to keep users on your computer out of certain folders, you can lock down their user accounts How to Lock Down Windows User Accounts How to Lock Down Windows User Accounts Letting people use your computer while you're gone could lead to problems. We show you how to restrict Windows features on standard or child accounts so others can't access sensitive info. Read More .

Which Windows Errors Give You Grief?

Error messages aren’t fun, but you don’t have to fear them. With a bit of thought and the help of internet resources, you can conquer anything that Windows throws your way. This is another good reminder to always keep your PC backed up The Ultimate Windows 10 Data Backup Guide The Ultimate Windows 10 Data Backup Guide Windows 10 makes data backups effortless. We have summarized every native backup, restore, recovery, and repair option we could find on Windows 10. Use our simple tips and never despair over lost data again! Read More . You never know when an error could prevent you from using your machine and force you to reinstall Windows.

Now that you’ve fixed real errors, have a laugh with some of the most ridiculous error messages ever The 12 Most Ridiculous Windows Errors of All Time The 12 Most Ridiculous Windows Errors of All Time You probably see plenty of boring Windows error messages every day. Come enjoy some ridiculous ones, just for laughs. Read More or a few silly reasons users called tech support 10 Silly Windows User Errors That Actually Happened 10 Silly Windows User Errors That Actually Happened Working in tech support is hard. Troubleshooting skills and patience are the corner stones of this craft. But even the most seasoned tech support pros would struggle with these unusual, and occasionally unbelievable, errors. Read More .

If you’ve used Windows, you know errors. Please share your most frequent Windows errors with us in the comments, along with any fixes you’ve found!

Image Credit: I000s_pixels via Shutterstock.com

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *