[Solved] Fix Cannot Uninstall or Install Software In Windows – Installer Service Not Running

by Abhishek Bhatnagar on June 19, 2012

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Many of our windows users asked us about this strange but really common problem which occur with most of the people, first this problem can occur in any version of windows including windows 7 and windows 8 as well. As per users queries which we get, users see the following error messages when they tried to install or uninstall any software from their PC – “Windows Installer Service could not be accessed” or “Windows Installer is not available”or “The Windows Installer service could not be accessed” when you try to uninstall Microsoft Office.

Cannot Uninstall or Install Software In Windows

Firstly for those who don’t know what windows installer is – Microsoft Windows Installer is a component of your Windows operating system that provides a standard foundation for installing and uninstalling software. Software manufacturers can create their product setup to use the Windows Installer to make software installation, maintenance, and uninstallation straightforward and easy.

Possible Reasons For Windows Installer Not Working are listed below.

  • The Windows Installer files that are on your hard disk are damaged or are missing.
  • You install or remove a program that uses the Windows Installer Microsoft Software Installation (MSI) package file (.msi). For example, this may occur when you try to install Microsoft Office on your computer.

Try These Methods To Fix Windows Installer Not Running

Method 1: Re Install Windows Installer [ XP, Windows 7, Vista ]

To reinstall the Windows Installer, rename the damaged Windows Installer files, and then reinstall the Windows Installer. To do this, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, click Run, type cmd in the Open text box, and then click OK.
  2. Type cd %windir%\system32, and then press ENTER.
  3. Type attrib -r -s -h dllcache, and then press ENTER.
  4. Type ren msi.dll msi.old, and then press ENTER.
  5. Type ren msiexec.exe msiexec.old, and then press ENTER.
  6. Type ren msihnd.dll msihnd.old, and then press ENTER.
  7. Type exit, and then press ENTER.
  8. At the command prompt, type exit, and then press ENTER.
  9. Click Start, and then click Turn off computer or Shut Down.
  10. Select the Restart option, and then click OK, or click Restart.
  11. Log on to the computer.
  12. Download and install the latest version of the Windows Installer. For more information about how to obtain the Windows Installer, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:893803 Windows Installer 3.1 v2 (3.1.4000.2435) is available
  13. Click Start, and then click Turn off computer or Shut Down.
  14. Select the Restart option, and then click OK, or click Restart.

 

Method 2: Re Register Windows Installer [ XP, Windows 7 or Vista ]

To reregister the Windows Installer, verify the location of the Msiexec.exe file on your hard disk and in the Windows Registry, and then reregister the Windows Installer. To do this, follow these steps.
Note Because there are several versions of Microsoft Windows, the following steps may be different on your computer. If they are, see your product documentation to complete these steps.

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  1. Determine the location of the Msiexec.exe file on your hard disk. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. Click Start, click Run, type %windir%\system32, and then click OK.
      Note This step will open the folder where the Msiexec.exe file is located.
    2. Make a note of the location of the Msiexec.exe file. The location of the Msiexec.exe file will be a combination of the value in the Address text box and the Msiexec.exe file name itself.
      For example if the Address text box contains a value of C:\Windows\system32, the location of the Msiexec.exe file will be C:\Windows\system32\Msiexec.exe.
  2. Do the following Editing in Registry [ Follow the steps in this step carefully ]
    1. Click Start, click Run, type regedit in the Open text box, and then click OK.
    2. Expand HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE, expand SYSTEM, expand CurrentControlSet, expandServices, and then click MSIServer.
    3. In the right pane, right-click ImagePath, and then click Modify.
    4. In the Value data text box, type the location of the Msiexec.exe file that you determined in step 1, followed by the value of /V, and then click OK.
      For example, if the location of the Msiexec.exe file is C:\Windows\system32\Msiexec.exe, type the following text in the Value datatext box:C:\WINDOWS\System32\msiexec.exe /V
    5. Click OK to close the Edit String dialog box.
    6. Click the File menu, and then click Exit to close Registry Editor.
  3. Start your computer in safe mode, and then register the Msiexec.exe file. To do this, follow these steps:
    1. Click Start, and then click Turn off computer or Shut Down.
    2. Select the Restart option, and then click OK, or click Restart.
    3. Press F8 before the Windows splash screen appears.
    4. On the Windows Advanced Option menu, use the arrow keys to select the Safe Modeoption, and then press ENTER.
    5. If you use a dual-boot or multiple-boot computer, select the appropriate operating system from the list that is displayed, and then press ENTER.
    6. Log on to the computer.
    7. Click Start, click Run, type msiexec /regserver in the Open text box, and then click OK.
      Note For 64-bit operating systems, you also have to reregister the 64-bit MSI installer. To do this, click Start, click Run, type %windir%\Syswow64\Msiexec /regserver in the Opentext box, and then click OK.
      On 64-bit editions of the Windows operating system, 32-bit binaries are located in%systemroot%\SysWow64 folder. The 64-bit binaries are located in the%systemroot%\System32 folder.
    8. Click Start, and then click Turn off computer or Shut Down.
    9. Select the Restart option, and then click OK, or click Restart.

Method 3: Restart The Windows Installer Service [ Windows 7 or Vista ]

As there are cases when windows installer services in windows is disabled at startup of windows, as startup type property for the Windows Installer service is set to a value of Disable. To check whether the Windows Installer service is set to a value of Disable, follow these steps:

  1. Click Start, click Run, type services.msc in the Open text box, and then click OK.
  2. In the Services (Local) list, right-click Windows Installer, and then click Properties.
  3. If the Startup type drop-down list is set to a value of Disable, select the Manual option from the Startup type drop-down list, and then click OK.
  4. Click the File menu, and then click Exit.

If none of the above methods help in your case, as you cannot fix the problem then download the windows installer registry key from Win Help Online and follow the procedure below to fix this problem.

  1. Download msiserver.zip and save it to Desktop.
  2. Unzip the file and extract msiserver.reg to the Desktop.
  3. Right-click msiserver.reg and choose Merge.
  4. Click Yes when asked for confirmation.
  5. Restart Windows.

Method 4: Fix It Tool To Fix Windows Installer Problem

You can also fix this problem by installing using Microsoft Fix It tool which actually corrects the issue by again fixing the registry, you can download the fix it tool to repair windows installer for this or refer to this microsoft support thread for more solutions.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

simeon June 23, 2012 at 10:32 am

THANK YOU VERY MUCH–YOU ARE GREAT

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