Personal Computer Fixes

How To Resolve STOP: c000021a Blue Screen Error

C000021a Blue Screen Error

The c000021a blue screen error is displayed when Windows loads or shuts down. This error is caused by a failure to load an essential Windows component which is required in the login process of your PC. Using a Windows NT, Windows Server 2003 or Windows XP computer will show this error on a blue screen like the one detailed above.

The error that is displayed is typically like this:

STOP: c000021a {Fatal System Error}
The Windows Logon Process system process terminated unexpectedly with a status of 0xc0000034 (0x00000000 0x0000000)
The system has been shutdown.

What Causes The Stop: c000021a Error?

The c000021a {Fatal System Failure} blue screen error is caused when the Windows kernel detects that either Winlogon.exe or Crss.exe has failed to load or initiate. These are essential processes for the smooth operation of Windows and are used mainly when your computer tries to log you in or attempts to log off. When the Windows kernel identifies this error, it has to “stop” your system from running, which is what causes the error.

Typical causes of this error include, an outdated set of Windows applications, a Service Pack installation failed, you have incompatible 3rd party software on your PC or a virus has corrupted the applications that Windows needs to load.

How To Resolve The STOP: c000021a Error

Step 1 – Identify The Cause Of The Problem

In order to begin fixing this problem, you first need to identify the cause of the issue. This is done by using the “Dr Watson” program in Windows, which is an inbuilt Windows debugging application. You should run Dr Watson, and it will tell you what’s causing the c000021a error. Here’s how to do it:

1) Click Start > Run (search “Run” in Vista & Win7)

2) Type DrWtsn32.exe -l into the box that appears

3) Press Enter

4) Next, type DrWtsn32.exe & Press Enter to run the application

5) Select the following check-boxes inside the application:

  • Append to Existing Log File
  • Visual Notification
  • Create Crash Dump File

6) When you next see the STOP: c000021a error, load run and type DrWtsn32.exe & hit enter

7) Load up the error logs that Dr Watson has, and see what the cause of the problem was

This will help you see what exactly caused the problem.

Step 2 – Change The Gina.dll File Settings

If you’re getting errors caused by Winlogon.exe, the most likely cause is the Gina.dll file, which is a file created to help with various graphical interfaces of Windows. This file is continually being used by your computer to help with opening up a series of different files and settings that programs need to run… but because the file is changeable by other programs, it can often become corrupted or damaged.

If you have recently installed any third party software or drivers, you need to remove them completely from your system. The likelihood is that these installations changed the Gina.dll settings and are causing your PC to become confused when it wants to open a file. If you require the program or driver for your PC to run, you should look for an updated version and try that.

Step 3 – Clean The Registry With A “Registry Cleaner”

Download This Registry Cleaner

The registry is a big database inside the Windows system which stores information and settings for your PC. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the biggest causes of errors for the Windows system as it often becomes corrupted and damaged. This can cause the STOP: c000021a error and in order to rule out the possibility of this being an issue, you should download and run a registry cleaner. You can download our recommended registry tool from the link below:

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