How to Fix Problems When Windows Installer or Uninstaller Doesn’t Work

It isn’t uncommon for something to go wrong when installing, uninstalling, or updating a program on a Windows system. For example, you might get an error message like one of the following:

  • The Windows Installer Service could not be accessed.
  • Windows Installer Service couldn’t be started.
  • Could not start the Windows Installer service on Local Computer. Error 5: Access is denied.

This happens often enough that Microsoft provides a special troubleshooter for fixing this sort of problem. The Fixit can be run at this Microsoft page. The screenshot below shows the Fixit. If you prefer to try to solve a problem yourself, Microsoft also gives instructions for a manual procedure. 

Microsoft Fixit for installer problems

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This tips section is maintained by Vic Laurie. Vic runs several websites with Windows how-to's, guides, and tutorials, including a site for learning about Windows and the Internet and another with Windows 7 tips.

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Comments

by BkWdsDrftr on 3. February 2014 - 18:42  (114218)

Trying to install Steady State on a XP machine for a websurfer build. Couldn't get the Windows Installer to run, tried looking for 3rd party msi installers and while on the UBCD4WIN page saw a link to a freeware list. Thought I'd search the homepage for 'msi' 'installer' to see what comes up, got to this page. Very nice, this helped - Somehow I had the service turned off! I would never have thought to look at that setting. I was about to give up on my carefully hoarded install file and purchase [edit]. You just saved me $45, thanks guys!

by irena.alba on 30. October 2013 - 1:14  (111876)

none of this helps

by marko123 on 8. March 2013 - 19:29  (106056)

this id not wrking

by v.laurie on 8. March 2013 - 19:38  (106058)

Do you mean the link isn't working? I just tried it and it worked fine.

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