How to Fix Dbghelp.dll Not Found or Missing Errors

A troubleshooting guide for dbghelp.dll errors

Dbghelp.dll errors are caused by the removal or corruption of the dbghelp DLL file. In some cases, these errors could be indicative of problems with the Windows registry, a computer virus or malware issue, or even hardware failure.

Information in this article applies to all Microsoft operating systems, including Windows 11, Windows 10, Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, and Windows 2000.

Dbghelp.dll Errors

dbghelp.dll error message

There are several ways dbghelp.dll errors can show up on your computer:

  • Dbghelp.dll Not Found
  • This application failed to start because dbghelp.dll was not found. Re-installing the application may fix this problem.
  • The program can't start because dbghelp.dll is missing from your computer.
  • Cannot find [PATH]\dbghelp.dll.
  • The file dbghelp.dll is missing.
  • Cannot start [APPLICATION]. A required component is missing: dbghelp.dll. Please install [APPLICATION] again.

The error message might appear while using or installing certain programs, when Windows starts or shuts down, or maybe even during a Windows installation.

How to Fix Dbghelp.dll Errors

Try these steps in order until the problem is resolved:

Do not download dbghelp.dll from a DLL download website. There are several reasons you shouldn't download DLLs from sites like that. If you need a copy of this file, it's best to obtain it from its original, legitimate source.

  1. Restore the deleted file from the Recycle Bin if you suspect you've accidentally deleted it.

    If you've already emptied the Recycle Bin, try using data recovery software to restore the file.

    Recycle bin on the Windows 10 desktop

    Complete this step only if you're sure you deleted it yourself and that it was working fine when you did so. If your antivirus program removed it, it's best to keep it deleted.

    You may need to start Windows in Safe Mode to complete these steps if you're unable to access Windows normally due to the error.

  2. Reinstall the program that uses the dbghelp.dll file. If the error occurs when using a particular program, reinstalling the software should replace the file.

    If you're a software developer, you can get the latest version of dbghelp.dll from Microsoft's Debug Help Library.

  3. Use the SFC /scannow System File Checker command to replace a missing or corrupt copy of the dbghelp.dll file. System File Checker should restore this DLL file since it's provided by Microsoft.

    The sfc.scanow command in the Windows command terminal
  4. Check for and install Windows updates. Many service packs and other patches obtained through Windows Update will update the DLL files on your computer. The dbghelp.dll file could be included in one of those updates.

  5. Scan your computer for malware to see if the error is due to a virus, since some hostile programs masquerade as DLL files.

  6. Use System Restore to restore your Windows PC to an earlier state, hopefully to one where the dbghelp.dll file wasn't causing issues. System Restore will undo recent changes to important system files.

    System Restore on the Windows System Properties menu
  7. Update drivers for hardware devices that might be related to dbghelp.dll. For example, if you see the "dbghelp.dll is missing" error when you play a 3D video game, try updating the drivers for your video card.

  8. Roll back the device drivers to an older version if the errors began after updating a particular hardware device,

    Roll Back Driver option on the Windows hardware properties menu
  9. Perform a Windows Startup Repair or repair installation to restore all Windows DLL files to their working versions.

  10. Use a registry cleaner to repair dbghelp.dll related issues in the registry. This could remove invalid dbghelp.dll registry entries that might be causing the DLL error.

  11. As a last resort, a clean install of Windows will erase everything from the hard drive and install a fresh copy of the operating system.

    All the information on your hard drive will be erased during a clean install.

  12. Some hardware problems can cause dbghelp.dll errors. Use a free memory testing tool or a hard drive testing program to see if the problem is related to the system memory or other technical issues.

    If the hardware fails any of your tests, replace the memory or replace the hard drive as soon as possible. If you're not interested in fixing this problem yourself, you can take your PC to a professional computer repair service.

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