Processes Windows 10

msiexec.exe Windows® installer

Windows Installer (msiexec.exe) facilitates the process of software installation in Windows 10 conforming it to the architectural framework of the operating system.

It is crucial that the process of program installation and configuration is smooth and without issues. For this reason, developers tend to use Windows Installer service to make it easier for their users to install their software. This way vendors minimize the total cost of ownership for their clients.

What is the Windows Installer (.msi) package file

The software installation info is consolidated into so-called installation packages. They contain .msi files with:

  • Database and guidelines for developing an installer for applications and services
  • Transformations, modifications and version control
  • API for remotely accessing installed applications/software

Msiexec process (stands for Microsoft Installer Executable) helps to install third-party applications bundled as an MSI format. Once a user double-clicks the .msi package file, Windows Installer service (msiexec.exe) automatically launches the installation process.

Microsoft Store apps vs Desktop apps

For years Microsoft has been encouraging vendors to use Windows Installer as the primary installation helper. As a matter of security, many users nowadays prefer downloading apps from Microsoft Store to unverified installers found on unknown websites. This way they ensure the application they install on their PC is not a virus and won’t bring any harm to their system.

Why it is beneficial to use Windows Installer

Although there exist other ways to install applications in Windows 10, third parties often go for Windows Installer service and bundle their installation information with this service. One of the reasons – its functions are not limited to installing programs only. Windows Installer can also execute some other important tasks. For example, software vendors use it to advertise their products without users having to install the application first. Also, it is possible to install products on demand as well as customize their features.

Another vital characteristic of Windows Installer is rollback installation. Windows Installer ensures that in case of a failed installation the system will be reverted to its state before installation. This means that all the files which were deleted and overwritten during setup will be recovered. 

Issues related with Windows Installer

Users might come across various issues when working with Windows Installer. Among them is Windows Installer service could not be accessed error. This is quite a widespread problem, so here are 2 possible solutions to it:

Method 1 – Launch Microsoft Installer Service from the Run dialog

1.       Open the Run dialog by using Windows + R shortcut on your keyboard

2.       Type services.msc and hit the OK button

3.       Find Windows Installer option in the list of services in the Service window

4.       Double click the Windows Installer service. It will open to Windows Installer Properties window

5.       Check whether the Service status is active. If it is stopped, hit the Start button and then confirm this modification by pressing OK.

msiexec.exe Windows® installer 

6.       Restart the computer to see if the problem is fixed

Method 2 – Reinstall Windows Installer

1.  Press Windows + R on the keyboard and the Run dialog will pop up.

2.      Type cmd and confirm by pressing OK

3.      Insert these commands one by one:

  • cd %windir%\system32
  • ren msi.dll msi.old
  • ren msiexec.exe msiexec.old
  • ren msihnd.dll msihnd.old

4.  Type Exit command

Once you are done with this process, restart your computer and install the newest version of Windows Installer (find it on Microsoft official website). After this, reboot your computer again.

These simple steps will help you deal with this issue. If this doesn’t solve the problem you might want to dig deeper into the topic on the Microsoft website or go to trusted technical forums.


To sum up, Windows Installer (msiexec.exe ) is of high importance in the process of software installation. Developers package their software into .msi files to simplify the installation and configuration of their products for their customers. The service has a multitude of advantages which make it stand out among its alternatives. However, recently many Windows 10 users are more likely to download applications from Windows Store, so Windows Installer is used less frequently today.

In Winx64 system msiexec.exe can known as msiexec.exe Windows® installer (32-bit)

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