Kernelbase.dll errors are caused by situations that lead to the removal or corruption of the kernelbase DLL file. In some cases, kernelbase.dll errors could indicate a registry problem, a malware issue, like a virus infection, or even a hardware failure.
This error message could apply to any program or system that might utilize the file on any of Microsoft's operating systems, including Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Windows 2000.
There are several ways kernelbase.dll error messages might be phrased, depending on the cause of the problem. Here are some of the more common errors:
- Kernelbase.dll Not Found
- The file kernelbase.dll is missing.
- This application failed to start because kernelbase.dll was not found. Re-installing the application may fix this problem.
- Cannot find [PATH]kernelbase.dll
- Cannot start [APPLICATION]. A required component is missing: kernelbase.dll. Please install [APPLICATION] again.
- KERNELBASE.dll caused an Unknown exception type
- Faulting module name: KERNELBASE.dll
These error messages might appear while using or installing certain programs, when Windows starts or shuts down, or maybe even during a Windows installation.
Noting at what point your kernelbase.dll error shows up is an important piece of information that will be helpful during troubleshooting.
How to Fix Kernelbase.dll Errors
Follow these steps in the order they're given below to try the more likely fixes first.
Do not download kernelbase.dll from one of those DLL download sites. There are many reasons why downloading a DLL file like that is a bad idea. If you need a copy of this file, it’s best to obtain it from its original, legitimate source.
Restore kernelbase.dll from the Recycle Bin. The easiest possible cause of a “missing” kernelbase.dll file is that you’ve mistakenly deleted it.
If you suspect that you’ve accidentally done this, but you’ve already emptied the Recycle Bin, you might be able to recover kernelbase.dll with a free file recovery program.
Start Windows in Safe Mode to complete any of these steps if you’re unable to access Windows normally due to the error.
Scan your entire computer for viruses and other malware. Some kernelbase.dll errors could be related to some kind of malware infection on your computer that has damaged the DLL file.
It's even possible that the error you're seeing is related to a hostile program that's masquerading as the file.
Execute the sfc/scannow command to replace a missing or corrupt copy of the kernelbase.dll file.
Fortunately, the kernelbase.dll file is provided by Microsoft in at least some versions of Windows, so the System File Checker tool (the sfc command) should restore it.
This is the most likely solution to a missing or not found kernelbase.dll error. Please make every effort you can to complete this step after making sure your computer isn't infected with malware.
Use System Restore to undo recent system changes. If you suspect that the DLL error was caused by a change made to an important file or configuration, and System File Checker didn’t help, System Restore should solve the problem.
Update the drivers for hardware devices that might be related to kernelbase.dll. If, for example, you’re receiving a “The file kernelbase.dll is missing” error when you play a 3D video game, try updating the drivers for your video card or network card.
Roll back a driver to a previously installed version if kernelbase.dll errors began after updating a particular hardware device’s driver.
Install any available Windows updates. Many service packs and other patches replace or update some of the hundreds of Microsoft distributed DLL files on your computer. The kernelbase.dll file could be included in one of those updates.
Repair your installation of Windows. If the individual kernelbase.dll file troubleshooting advice above is unsuccessful, performing a Refresh, Startup Repair, or Repair Installation (depending on your version of Windows) should restore all Windows DLL files to their working versions.
Use a free registry cleaner to repair kernelbase.dll related issues in the registry. A registry cleaner program may be able to help by removing invalid kernelbase.dll registry entries that might be causing the DLL error.
We rarely recommend the use of registry cleaners. It's included as an option here just in case it turns out to be helpful, in which case you could avoid the more difficult testing and last-resort options below.
If you’re seeing this error in the Plex Media Server, delete the %LocalAppData% folder that corresponds to that software.
For example, one of these folders:
%LocalAppData%Plex %LocalAppData%Plex Media Server
This is the likely solution if you see this in Event Viewer:
Faulting application name: Plex.exe Faulting module name: KERNELBASE.dll
Test your memory and then test your hard drive. The majority of hardware troubleshooting has been reserved for the last step, but your computer’s memory and hard drive are relatively easy to test and are the most likely components to cause kernelbase.dll errors as they fail.
If the hardware fails any of your tests, replace the memory or replace the hard drive as soon as possible.
Perform a clean install of Windows. This will erase everything and install a fresh copy of Windows. If none of the steps above correct the kernelbase.dll error, this should be your next course of action.
To be clear, all the data on the drive you have Windows installed on will be deleted during this step, so be sure to back up important files if you're able to. Make sure you've made every attempt possible to fix the kernelbase.dll error using a troubleshooting step prior to this one before you take on a clean installation.
Troubleshoot for an unknown hardware problem if any kernelbase.dll errors persist. A clean install of Windows is a fresh start on the software side of the troubleshooting. So, unfortunately, if that didn’t work, your DLL problem must be hardware related.
Need More Help?
If you’re not interested in fixing this problem yourself, see How Do I Get My Computer Fixed? piece for a full list of your support options, plus help with everything along the way like figuring out repair costs, getting your files off, choosing a repair service, and a lot more.