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By Eunice Samson | February 11, 2019 |

greater than 12 minutes

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Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) errors like the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE problem can crash your system, putting your tasks on a complete halt. However, they should not stop you from getting your work done.

Also referred to as Error Code 0xC0000218, the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD can cause your system to restart repeatedly. You may be able to restart your computer and access your desktop temporarily. However, after a few minutes or hours, the BSOD will re-appear. If you neglect to address the problem from its root, the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error may cause even bigger issues to your PC. So, when you see the symptoms of the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error, make sure you check out our comprehensive guide to get rid of the issue immediately. In this post, we are going to teach you how to fix the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error. What’s more, we will explain what causes it, helping you prevent it from showing up again.


It is important to get an idea of what causes the error. After all, that detail plays a crucial role in resolving the problem. So, before we share the solutions, we will discuss the possible reasons why you have the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error on your computer.

  • It is possible that you have outdated, corrupted, or incompatible device drivers on your computer.
  • If you recently installed a new software program, it may have corrupted entries or keys in the Windows Registry.
  • Perhaps, you opened a link in your e-mail which brought you to a dodgy website. This is one of the ways that malware can get onto your computer and corrupt the program and system files.
  • Did you recently uninstall a program? If the process was unsuccessful or done incorrectly, the Windows Registry can get corrupted.
  • If there are missing DLL files in your system, the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD error can show up.
  • The drivers in the software you recently installed may come in conflict with existing drivers on your PC.
  • If a new installation of a software program is done incorrectly, crucial system files may get mistakenly deleted.
  • There was a conflict between the drivers after you installed a new piece of hardware.
  • There are damaged or corrupted files on your hard disk or RAM.
  • You have installed a BIOS or Firmware that is damaged or incompatible with your device and operating system.

By now, you might wonder, “What are the symptoms of the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error?” Well, the first thing you will notice is your PC performing slower than usual. It will hang repeatedly, preventing you from accessing the desktop. On the other hand, you may see the BSOD error after a program window crashed. Whatever the reason may be, you can check out this article to learn how to get rid of error 0xc0000218 on Windows 10. Work your way down the list until you eliminate the problem.

Before anything else…

Once your computer has been affected by the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error, it will restart automatically. It can be challenging to resolve the problem, especially since your PC keeps on restarting. As such, the first thing you need to do is to deactivate the automatic restart feature. Here are the steps:

  1. On your keyboard, press Windows Key+E. Doing so will launch the File Explorer.
  2. Once File Explorer is up, go to the left-pane menu and right-click This PC.
  3. Select Properties.
  4. Now, go to the left-pane menu and click Advanced System Settings.
  5. When the System Properties wizard pops up, go to the Startup and Recovery section, then click the Settings button.
  6. In the next window, you will see the System Failure category. Look for the Automatically Restart option and deselect it.
  7. Click OK to save the changes you made.

Once you’ve disabled the Automatic Restart feature, you can proceed to the solutions below.

Solution 1: Booting in Safe Mode

Safe Mode has been a reliable feature for fixing most kinds of errors, including the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD. When you boot your system in this mode, it will load the essential services only, allowing you to determine where the problem is coming from. If the error does not appear after you boot into Safe Mode, then you will know that the error did not come from the system itself. Moreover, this is an indication that third-party programs or certain hardware are causing the issue. To begin, you need to follow the instructions below:

  1. On your keyboard, press Windows Key+I. Doing so will launch the Settings app.
  2. Once the Settings app shows up, select Update & Security.
  3. Go the left-pane menu and select Recovery.
  4. Now, go to the right pane and click the Restart Now button under the Advanced Startup section.
  5. While your system is restarting, you will be asked to choose the next step. Select Troubleshoot from the options.
  6. Follow this path:

Advanced Options ->Startup Settings ->Restart

  1. Once your system has restarted, press F4 on your keyboard to enable Safe Mode.

Solution 2: Using the Blue Screen Troubleshooter

Windows 10 has a built-in troubleshooter specifically designed to fix Blue Screen of Death errors. So, we recommend running that tool to get rid of the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD error. To access the troubleshooter, follow the steps below:

  1. Go to your taskbar, then click the Search icon.
  2. Type “Settings” (no quotes), then press Enter.
  3. On the Settings app, click Update & Security.
  4. Choose Troubleshoot from the left-pane menu.
  5. Now, go to the right pane and click Blue Screen.
  6. Click the Run the Troubleshooter button to proceed.
  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to resolve the error.

Solution 3: Inspecting the External Hardware Devices

As we’ve mentioned, the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD error can be caused by problematic external hardware devices connected to your computer. As such, we recommend unplugging them to identify the culprit. To proceed, follow these steps:

  1. Remove all external hardware devices connected to your PC.
  2. Restart your computer.
  3. If your system boots without any problem, then you’ve confirmed that the problem is coming from your external hardware devices.
  4. Now, you need to determine the particular device that is causing the BSOD error. To do that, you need to plug the devices one by one until you identify the culprit.

You can replace the device with a new one. However, to ensure that the error will not come back, we recommend updating your drivers. We will discuss this in detail in the next solution.

Solution 4: Updating the Drivers

One of the reasons why the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD error occurs is because of conflicts with the drivers, especially when you recently installed a new piece of hardware or device. As such, we suggest that you update your drivers to the latest versions recommended by the manufacturer. There are three ways to do this: using the Device Manager, visiting the manufacturer’s website to download and install the drivers, or automating the process with the help of Auslogics Driver Updater.

Using the Device Manager

  1. Go to your taskbar, then right-click the Windows icon.
  2. Select Device Manager from the list.
  3. Expand the contents of the first category on the list.
  4. Right-click a device under that category, then select Update Driver. Perform this step for the items under all the categories.

Visiting the Manufacturer’s Website

It is worth noting that when you update your drivers via the Device Manager, your system can possibly miss the latest versions of the drivers. As such, it is still advisable to go to the manufacturer’s website to download the right drivers for your PC. Make sure that you find the version that is compatible with your operating system version and processor type. After all, installing the wrong drivers can cause instability issues on your system.

Automating the Process with Auslogics Driver Updater

As you can see, updating your drivers manually can consume a significant amount of time and effort. What’s more, the process can be complicated. As such, we suggest that you opt for the easier and safer method. Use Auslogics Driver Updater, and you will not worry about making any mistakes. After installing this software program, it will automatically recognize your processor type and operating system version. All you need to do is click a button and Auslogics Driver Updater will find the latest manufacturer-recommended drivers for your computer.

Solution 5: Getting Rid of Problematic Windows Update Files

If the error appeared while you were installing a Windows update, then there must be something wrong with the update files you downloaded. In this case, you need to remove the faulty Windows Update files to get rid of the problem. Here are the steps:

  1. Open the Settings app by pressing Windows Key+I on your keyboard.
  2. Now, select Update & Security from the options.
  3. Go to the left-pane menu, then select Windows Update.
  4. Move to the right pane, then select View Update History.
  5. On the next page, click Uninstall Updates.

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  7. Restart your PC, then check if the error is gone.

Solution 6: Uninstalling Recently Added Third-Party Programs

Did you recently install a third-party program? If so, then you should try removing it to fix the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE BSOD error. To do that, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing Windows Key+R on your keyboard.
  2. Now, type “appwiz.cpl” (no quotes) and click OK. Performing this step should launch the Programs and Features window.
  3. Look for the program you installed, then right-click it.
  4. Select Uninstall from the context menu.
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the uninstallation process.

Solution 7: Performing a Full Scan on Your Computer

Once malware finds its way into your system, it will delete files and cause damage to your system. One of the ways to address this issue is by using Windows Defender to perform a Full Scan of your computer. Here are the steps:

  1. Click the Search icon on your taskbar, then type “Windows Defender” (no quotes).
  2. Select Windows Defender Security Center from the results.
  3. In the left-pane menu, choose Virus & Threat Protection.
  4. Now, move to the right pane and click the ‘Run a new advanced scan’ link.
  5. Select Full Scan, then click the Scan Now button.

While Windows Defender can get rid of common types of computer malware and viruses, it can still miss a threat or two. If you want a more comprehensive and reliable malware scan for your system, we recommend using Auslogics Anti-Malware. This tool can detect malware no matter how discreetly it operates in the background. What’s more, you can use it alongside your main antivirus. So, it can function as a security reinforcement that will deal with malware and viruses with an iron hand.

Solution 8: Performing an SFC Scan

The System File Checker (SFC) is a Windows utility that has been designed to locate and repair damaged, corrupted, or missing system files. So, if you want to learn how to fix the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error, you need to know how to perform an SFC scan. Simply follow the instructions below:

  1. Press Windows Key+S on your keyboard, then type “Command Prompt” (no quotes).
  2. Right-click Command Prompt from the results, then select Run as Administrator.
  3. Once Command Prompt is up, type “sfc /scannow” (no quotes), then press Enter.
  4. Wait for a couple of minutes until the process is complete.
  5. Finally, restart your computer to ensure that the changes will take effect.

After restarting your PC, check if the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error is gone. If it is still there, move on to the next solution.

Solution 9: Using the DISM Command-Line Tool

The Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) tool is also useful in repairing corrupted or damaged system files. So, if the SFC scan did not get rid of the error, we suggest using this command-line tool. To proceed, follow these instructions.

  1. Go to your taskbar and click the Search icon.
  2. Type “cmd.exe” (no quotes), then right-click Command Prompt from the results.
  3. Select Run as Administrator.
  4. Once Command Prompt opens, run the command below:

DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

It is worth noting that this process will take longer than the SFC scan. So, you have to patiently wait for it to end.

Solution 10: Using the CHKDSK Utility

If the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error is caused by issues on your hard disk, you can use the CHKDSK utility to fix it. Follow the instructions below to proceed:

  1. You need to open Command Prompt with administrative rights. As illustrated in the previous solutions, you need to click the Search icon on your taskbar and type “Command Prompt” (no quotes). From the results, you need to right-click Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator.
  2. Once Command Prompt is up, paste the text below:

Chkdsk /f /C:

Keep in mind that this command line will fix the C: drive. If your operating system is installed elsewhere, remember to replace it with the appropriate drive letter.

Solution 11: Cleaning your Hard Drive

If your hard drive is filled with unnecessary files and other types of junk, it will eventually cause the system to slow down. When this happens, there will be conflicts when the drivers communicate with each other, causing the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error to appear. Thankfully, you can use the Disk Cleanup utility to free up some space and improve the performance of your PC. To launch that tool, follow the steps below:

  1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing Windows Key+R on your keyboard.
  2. Inside the box, type “cleanmgr” (no quotes), then hit Enter.
  3. The Disk Cleanup utility will inspect your hard drive and assess the amount of space you can recover on it.
  4. After a few seconds, a new window will pop up. Here, you will see all the folders and files that you can delete.
  5. Click the ‘Clean up system files’ button.
  6. Select the files you want to remove. If you’re going to include the Recycle Bin, make sure that you are not keeping essential files there.
  7. Click OK to proceed.

Pro Tip: If you want an easier and more convenient way to get rid of unnecessary files, we suggest using Auslogics BoostSpeed. This tool has a powerful cleaning module that can sweep out all types of computer junk, including user temporary files, web browser cache, unused error logs, and leftover Windows Update files, among many others. What’s more, it will address any issues that affect the speed of your computer. So, after using this tool, you will have resolved the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error and even improve the performance of your PC.

Solution 12: Installing the Latest Updates for Windows

Outdated system files on your computer can cause the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error to occur. So, it is always advisable to install the latest updates that Microsoft officially rolls out for Windows 10. Most of the time, your system downloads the updates discreetly in the background. That said, it can still miss an update or two. As such, we suggest manually starting the download process so that you can install the updates right away. Here are the steps:

  1. Go to your taskbar, then right-click the Windows icon.
  2. Select Settings from the list.
  3. In the Settings app, click Update & Security.
  4. On the next page, select Windows Update from the options in the left-pane menu.
  5. Move to the right pane, then click Check for Updates. If updates are available, download them.
  6. Once the download process is complete, restart your computer to install the updates.

Solution 13: Using the Windows Memory Diagnostic Tool

As we’ve mentioned, corrupted parts in your RAM can cause the error to show up. So, if you want to know how to get rid of the Error 0xc0000218 on Windows 10, you should learn the steps to fixing RAM issues. Once you’re ready, follow the instructions below:

  1. Save all your open files and close all active applications.
  2. Click the Search icon on your taskbar, then type “Windows Memory” (no quotes).
  3. Select Windows Memory Diagnostic from the results.
  4. In the new window, select the ‘Restart now and check for problems (recommended)’ option.
  5. The tool will start testing your RAM to detect memory issues. Once the process is complete, your system will automatically restart.

To see the results of the test, you just need to click the Notification icon on your taskbar.

Solution 14: Bringing Back Your System to a Previous Restore Point

Whenever you make mistakes in life, don’t you wish you could turn back time and undo all the decisions you made? Unfortunately, we still do not have the technology needed to travel through time. Perhaps, the closest thing we have is the System Restore feature in Windows 10. If you’re experiencing issues with your PC, you can always roll your system back to a previous state where the problems did not exist. To proceed, follow the steps below:

  1. Press Windows Key+R on your keyboard to launch the Run dialog box.
  2. Type “rstrui” (no quotes) inside the box, then click OK to open the System Restore wizard.
  3. Click Next to proceed.
  4. Remember to select the ‘Show more restore points’ option to expand your options.
  5. Select a date when the STATUS_CANNOT_LOAD_REGISTRY_FILE error did not exist.
  6. Click Next to proceed.
  7. To launch the process, click Finish.

Note: If you do not have a habit of creating restore points, do not worry. Windows creates restore points automatically. So, you can always choose the restore points your system created for you.

Solution 15: Performing a Clean Install

When all else fails, you can perform a clean install of the Windows operating system. Remember that this should be your last resort, and you should only use this option when you’ve exhausted all the solutions we provided. Before performing the procedure, do not forget to save all your essential files on a safe drive. Since the process is a bit complicated, you can always ask a professional technician to perform the clean install for you.

Are there other Blue Screen of Death errors you’d like us to fix?

Submit them in the comments below and we’ll feature the guide in our next blog post!

Fed up with your slow PC? Tired of waiting for Windows to start up? Take a look at the most common reasons behind poor performance and the best ways to deal with them here.

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