Ultimate Guide – Fix Rundll32.exe Errors on Windows, 10 Effective Ways

Fix & Repair Solved issue

Question asked by:

Paco S.

Issue:

I keep seeing the 'Rundll32.exe Error' Tips to resolve it?

Hello! I am getting a Rundll32.exe error on my Windows 10 PC now and I don't know how I will be able to fix it... Can you guys help me out?
Fix Rundll32 Now iolo's System Mechanic® will automatically fix your rundll32.exe issues, optimize & protect your whole PC.

Welcome to WindowsGuided, where we untangle the web of Windows errors! Today’s focus is the perplexing Rundll32.exe error, a common yet often misunderstood issue for many Windows users. Let’s break it down together.

The Common Causes for the Rundll32.exe Errors

  • DLL Errors: The usual suspects behind this error are corrupted or missing DLL files1, or a virus-infected shared DLL file. These DLL files are like the backstage crew of a theater; when they’re off, the show can’t go on smoothly.
  • Registry Malfunctions: Incorrect DLL entries in the Windows registry2 can also play a part. The registry is like the brain of your operating system, so when something’s off here, it can cause significant issues.
  • Recognizing the Error: You’ll usually know you’re facing this error when a system alert or warning pops up, indicating a problem with DLL files or registry entries mentioning rundll32.exe.

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Rundll32.exe Error on Windows 10

Quick-Fix Preview & Solutions to Try Now

  • DLL Repair Tool: Let dedicated software handle the complicated stuff.
  • Antivirus Check-Up: Your security software might be a bit overprotective and needs adjusting.
  • Windows Update: Keeping your system updated can ‘magically’ solve many problems.

Stay with us as we dive into these solutions, making the Rundll32.exe error a thing of the past!

How Does the RunDLL32.exe Error Look Like?

Some common messages you might encounter with this error are:

  • rundll32.exe – Bad Image.
  • rundll32.exe Application Error.
  • rundll32.exe could not be found.
  • rundll32.exe could not be installed.
  • rundll32.exe could not be launched. Class not registered.
  • rundll32.exe could not be started.
  • rundll32.exe failed to initialize properly.
  • rundll32.exe has encountered a problem and needs to close. We are sorry for the inconvenience.
  • rundll32.exe is not a valid Win32 application.
  • rundll32.exe is not running.
  • Cannot find rundll32.exe.
  • Error starting program: rundll32.exe.
  • Faulting Application Path: rundll32.exe.
  • The file rundll32.exe is missing or corrupt.
  • Windows failed to start – rundll32.exe.

No matter which one you got, we’ve tested many different ways to fix those errors. Now let’s see some easy and more advanced ways on how to fix these and whether you should download the exe file (if it’s corrupted or missing)?

Should You Download the Rundll32.exe File?

As the exe file version will vary from PC to PC — we do not recommend downloading it from 3rd party sites. Moreover, these .exe files might be unsafe and infected with malware!
It’s better to use the fix software to restore it automatically.

Or try using the SFC tool locally.

5 Easy Steps to Fix Rundll32.exe Errors on Windows PC (Implementation Time: ~7-10mins)

Fix 1: Utilizing a DLL Repair Tool

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For those who find the nitty-gritty of system files daunting, a DLL (Dynamic Link Library) repair tool can be a lifesaver. We recommend “iolo System Mechanic”.

How to Use It:

These tools typically scan for corrupt or missing rundll32.exe files and attempt repairs automatically.
It’s a fuss-free solution, especially for those not keen on delving into system files or registry details.

Download iolo System Mechanic
  • Just download it.
  • Run a scan.
  • And it’s fixed!

Fix 2: Use the SFC Scan Tool

If you’re comfortable using Windows utilities, the “Command Prompt” can be your ally. Running an SFC (System File Checker) scan can address corrupt rundll32.exe files or other system file issues.

Steps to Follow:

Press ‘Windows Key + X’, select “Command Prompt (Admin)”, and type sfc/scannow. This process might take a while, but it’s like giving your Windows system a thorough health check.

Type sfc scannow

Fix 3: Clearing Browser Cache

Sometimes, the rundll32 error occurs due to malware or suspicious sites encountered during internet surfing.

Clear Google Chrome Browsing Data

Clearing your browsing history and cache can eliminate these problems.
It’s like flushing out digital clutter that may be causing the rundll32.exe error.

Fix 4: Checking Antivirus Software

Checking rundll32.exe in Antivirus Software

At times, antivirus programs might incorrectly flag the rundll32.exe as a threat.

Review your antivirus settings. If rundll32.exe is sandboxed or blocked, adjusting these settings or temporarily disabling the antivirus can resolve the error.

Fix 5: Update Windows

Regular Windows updates often include fixes for common system issues. Ensuring your Windows 10 is up-to-date can prevent and fix rundll32 errors.

How to Update:

Press ‘Windows Key + I’, navigate to “Update & Security”, and click “Check for updates”. Installing the latest updates can keep rundll32.exe and other essential components functioning optimally.

Check for Updates

By following these user-friendly steps, you can effectively tackle the rundll32.exe error on your Windows operating system. 

5 Advanced Solutions to Fix the Rundll32 Errors (Implementation Time: ~10-15mins)

Fix 1: Startup Repair for Corrupted Files

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When rundll32.exe has stopped working or becomes corrupt, using “Startup Repair” can be a powerful method to fix the issue.

Access it through “Recovery” option in your “Settings”, and use it to replace the corrupted rundll32.exe file.

Recovery options  Advanced Startup  Restart Now

Fix 2: System Updates and Restoration

Often, the solution to fix rundll32.exe errors lies in simply updating Windows. Try updating your version of Windows to patch any system vulnerabilities.

If you’ve encountered this error after a recent change, using System Restore can roll back your system to a point where rundll32.exe worked correctly.

Steps to Restore:

Press ‘Windows Key + S’, enter “system restore”, and follow the instructions to complete the process. Think of it as a time machine that returns your system to a better state.

Type System Restore
System Restore

Fix 3: Replacing the Rundll32.exe File

If your rundll32.exe file is missing or corrupted, consider replacing it with a file from another Windows 10 PC.

Replacing the Rundll32.exe File

Copy a genuine rundll32.exe file to a USB drive and then transfer it to your affected PC.

Fix 4: Registry Tweaks

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You can make the following Registry Tweaks to resolve Rundll32.exe errors:

  • Open Registry Editor: Press Win + R, type “regedit”, and press ‘Enter’.
Type regedit
  • Navigate to Run Key: Go to: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run
  • Backup Registry: Click “File” > “Export” to create a backup.
  • Review and Identify: Look for rundll32.exerelated entries but do exercise caution.
  • Modify or Delete Entries: Right-click on the problematic entry. Choose “Modify” to correct the path or “Delete” to remove it.
  • Repeat for User Run Key: Navigate to: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run.
Modify or Delete rundll32 Entries in Registry Editor
  • Restart Your Computer: Close “Registry Editor” and restart to apply changes.
  • Check for System File Corruption: Open Command Prompt as admin. Run “sfc /scannow” to repair system files.
Type sfc scannow
  • Monitor System Performance: Observe for any recurring rundll32.exe errors.

Make sure to exercise caution when dealing with registry edits, as they involve sensitive components.

Fix 5: Antivirus and Windows Defender Check

Sometimes, “Windows Defender” or other antivirus programs might mistakenly identify rundll32.exe as a threat.

Check if the rundll32.exe is added to the sandbox or blocked in any way. Adjusting your antivirus or “Windows Defender” settings can often resolve the error.

Manage settings under Virus & Threat Protection
Toggle Off Real-time protection

By employing these advanced methods, you should be able to fix the rundll32.exe error on Windows. These steps require a bit more technical know-how but can be highly effective in resolving this common issue faced by many Windows users.
Remember, always proceed with caution when handling system files and settings.

Is The Error Fixed Now?

Fixing the rundll32.exe error on Windows can be approached in many different ways as you’ve seen by now.
For more persistent issues like the ‘rundll32 has stopped working’ error – you might want to use an auto-fix software offered below.

If you have any other issues or questions – feel free to mention them in the comments below.
Best of luck with your troubleshooting!

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If your rundll32.exe errors are still not fixed — feel free to reach out to us via email and share your problem.

  1. DLL files explained — via Youtube []
  2. Windows registry explanation — via Wikipedia []
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About the author
Ross Zilbert - Expert Author

Ross is an avid author on WindowsGuided.com. He’s been working in the field of software and networks as a technician for more than 6 years.

Now he’s sharing his expertise and awesome guides with the broad public.