How to Fix Msxml3.dll Not Found or Missing Errors

A troubleshooting guide for msxml3.dll errors

Screenshot of an msxml3.dll error message in Windows


Msxml3.dll error messages may appear while using certain programs, when Windows starts up, or even during a Windows installation. Here are some common ways that you might see msxml3.dll errors:

  • Msxml3.dll Not Found
  • This application failed to start because msxml3.dll was not found. Re-installing the application may fix this problem.
  • Cannot find [PATH]\msxml3.dll
  • The file msxml3.dll is missing.
  • Cannot start [APPLICATION]. A required component is missing: msxml3.dll. Please install [APPLICATION] again.

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

Causes of Msxml3.dll Errors

Msxml3.dll errors are caused by the removal or corruption of the msxml3 DLL file. Msxml3.dll errors could be due to problems with the Windows registry, a computer virus or malware issue, or even hardware failure.

Do not download msxml3.dll from a DLL download website. If you need a copy of msxml3.dll, obtain it from its original, legitimate source.

How to Fix Msxml3.dll Errors

Try these solutions in order until the problem is fixed:

You may need to start Windows in Safe Mode if you're unable to access Windows normally due to the msxml3.dll error.

  1. Download and install MSXML 3.0 from Microsoft. Download the MSXML developer kit and install it on your PC to replace the missing msxml3.dll file.

    Download and install MSXML 3.0 from Microsoft.

    There are several versions of Microsoft XML parser (MSXML), but v3.0 is the only one that provides the msxml3.dll file.

  2. Restore your Recycle Bin. If you suspect that you've accidentally deleted msxml3.dll, you might be able to restore the deleted file from the Recycling Bin. If you've already emptied the Recycle Bin, you can use data recovery software to restore the deleted file.

    Recycle bin on the Windows 10 desktop

    Only recover a deleted msxml3.dll file if you're positive that you deleted it yourself.

  3. Run a virus/malware scan. The msxml3.dll error you're seeing could be related to a hostile program that is masquerading as the DLL file. Scan your computer for malware to rule out this possibility.

    Avira antivirus software
  4. Use System Restore to undo recent system changes. If you suspect that the msxml3.dll error was caused by recent changes made to an important file or configuration, use Windows System Restore to restore your Windows PC.

    System Restore in the Windows System Properties menu
  5. Reinstall the program that uses the msxml3.dll file. If the msxml3.dll error occurs when you use a particular program, reinstalling the software should replace the missing file.

    Uninstall apps in the Windows settings
  6. Install Windows Updates. Some service packs and patches include important updates for the DLL files on your PC, so check for and install Windows updates.

    Check for Windows updates in the Windows settings.
  7. Repair Windows. Perform a Windows Startup Repair to restore all Windows DLL files to their working versions.

    Startup Repair on the Windows Advance Options menu
  8. Clean the Windows registry. Use a free Windows registry cleaner to remove invalid msxml3.dll registry entries that might be causing the error.

    CCleaner Free Windows registry cleaner tool
  9. Perform a clean installation of Windows. Perform clean install of Windows as a last resort to start with a fresh copy of the operating system.

    Windows installation screen

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

  10. Run File CheckerUse the SFC /Scannow System File Checker command to replace a missing or corrupt copy of the msxml3.dll file. If this DLL file is provided by Microsoft, the System File Checker tool should restore it.

    The sfc.scanow command in the Windows command terminal
  11. Update hardware driversUpdate drivers for hardware devices that might be related to msxml3.dll. For example, if you see the "msxml3.dll is missing" error when you play a 3D video game, try updating the drivers for your video card.

    Update driver option on the Windows Device Manager menu
  12. Roll back your drivers. If the msxml3.dll error began after updating a particular hardware device, roll back the device drivers to an older version.

    Roll Back Driver option on the Windows hardware properties menu
  13. Test and replace your hardware. Use a free memory testing tool or a hard drive testing program to check for hardware-related DLL errors. If the hardware fails any of your tests, replace the memory or replace the hard drive as soon as possible, or take your PC to a professional computer repair service.

    Steps for replacing a hard drive
     Maritsa Patrinos / Lifewire