Sheryl Canter

Another Installation Already in Progress (But it’s Not)

I keep encountering an annoying error message as I try to set up my new 64-bit Vista laptop. Often when I try to install a program, I’m told that another installation is already in progress and I must complete that one first. But no other installation is in progress, and simply rebooting doesn’t help.

I googled this problem, and found some complicated advice about failed installations and the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility. But I find that this error occurs when a program installs just fine in every respect except that it leaves the Windows Installer Service running.

There’s a easy way to fix this.

Right-click on the Computer icon, wherever it exists on your system, and select Manage. (I’m using the Classic Start menu, so the Computer icon is on my desktop. If you’re using the new Start menu, the icon is in the Start menu.) This opens the Computer Management utility.

Windows Installer Service

Select Services, right click on Windows Installer in the list and select Properties. If you’re having the problem, the Windows Installer service is started, and the Stop button is disabled. Simply rebooting doesn’t stop the service. Here’s how you stop it.

In the Properties dialog, change Startup type to “Disabled”, click OK, and reboot your computer. This stops the service. After your computer reboots, again open Computer Management (right-click on Computer and select Manage), open Windows Installer Properties, and change the Startup type back to Manual. Now you’re good to go and can start a new installation.


  1. Eugene says:

    Thank you! This worked for us!!!!

  2. Pavel says:

    Thanks, worked for me as well (Windows 7/64bit).
    Though, as pointed out already by someone earlier, the Windows Installer service remained in a running state after the installation ended, which it shouldn麓t, right?

  3. Ron says:

    I confirmed that this one weird trick works with Windows 7/64 bit and VS2013 Update 2.

  4. Balaji says:

    Very helpful post.

    This worked for me.
    In my case a system restart was needed after following the steps.

    Thank you.

  5. kumar says:

    I had installed bluestacks to run android on my pc. it was installed, worked well. but I had to uninstall it to reinstall as it showed malfunctioning. unfortunately now I can not install it again as it gives me message that ” this program is already installed on or machine”. I have removed it from everywhere however it shows the same message. how can I installed again. restoring is also not working.

  6. Sutar.. says:

    I am sorry, Hv tried it but the screen is not highlighted… Startup type- is not highlighted so I cant change it.

  7. John says:

    Thanks … did the trick

  8. Neil says:

    Thanks – I found I didn’t need to restart the laptop on Win8.1, shutting the service off allowed me to start VisualStudio.

  9. Rodney Thomas says:

    The manual pull down screen is not highlighted so I can’t change it.

  10. Doug Heydon says:

    This problem has been dogging me for weeks and nothing seemed to work. Your suggested approach did the trick – Thanks! I’m using Win 7 Ultmate, and this has occurred with several program updates. None of the other ‘gurus’ appear to have mentioned this, so I’m glad I found your blog.

  11. Lyn says:

    Thank you, Sheryl. I thought I would never be able to uninstall a program again! lol. This was awesome, worked like a charm. And it’s the only site with the answer for this problem. I’m going to share a link to your site for others with this issue. Thanks again!

  12. Zoe says:

    I’ve followed this to the letter several times and I am still incurring the problem. I’ve tried various other suggestions on the internet and nothing – massively frustrating. If anyone has any other suggestions I’d be happy to hear them.

  13. Jer says:

    Hi Sheryl,

    Why I can’t change start up to “Disable”. It’s unclickable.

  14. Abiud says:

    Muchas gracias funciono en xp genial 馃榾

  15. Paul Lynch says:

    Another way to fix this is to open Server Manager, click Add Features and then cancel the other install that it believes is currently in progress. I’ve seen this message re-appear following 2 re-boots and cancelling the install fixed it for me.

  16. Wendy says:

    Brilliant … and thank you ! Don’t know why Microsoft couldn’t publish this simple solution instead of that page and a half of useless information stating the obvious. Win8.

  17. Shaylene says:

    Thank you so much, was pulling out my hair trying to figure out how to get rid of the error

  18. Eleonore says:

    Many thanks Sheryl for this very useful way to get rid of this nerve-racking error message. Your effective solution did work reliably and perfectly!

  19. sandun says:

    This is going to be work if you are installing Autodesk product. in the task manager end tank the Autodesk application manager. Then install the autodesk product.

  20. wayne says:

    Hi Sheryl,
    i cant access start up to “disable” it

  21. Dan says:

    anyone with a solution how change the start up from manual it is not highlighted. I’ve seem to have tried all the tricks above without any success

  22. Susan says:

    Thank you thank you!!!
    You have helped a multitude of people since you posted this one simple (but unknown) fix back in 2008. Im thankful google still fines the old stuff.
    Susan in Alaska appreciates you Sheryl!

  23. michael alognon says:

    It works perfectly!
    Thanks a lot.

  24. Albert says:

    Thanks Sheryl.
    It worked like a charm!

  25. Eddy says:

    thanks! it worked immediately!

  26. Lisa Hollenbeck says:

    The startup type is in the gray and won’t let me change it. Any other suggestions?

  27. Michael says:

    Thank you very much – can now remove progs : -)

  28. Larissa says:

    I did this just as you described and it did not work for me : (

  29. abdullah says:

    in the properties the startup type option is disabled what should i do

  30. akshit says:

    Thanks a lot……

  31. Gilles Poulleau says:

    How to deal with “another msi installation already in progress” when all others hints didn’t work :

    In the registry, the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Installer\InProgress will point to a file located under the C:\Windows\Installer directory with an IPI extension (something like f2345.ipi).
    Note that removing the InProgess key even with the Rollback doesn’t solve anything and the key will be recreated as it was by msiexec.

    Opening this file with notepad or any text editor will show a lot of binary content but at some place you’ll find some readable text :
    3 0 8 9 9 8 1 9 – 1 9 8 8 7 3 6 7 2 0 { 6 5 C C 0 4 0 7 – 4 C C 0 – 4 A C 7 – 9 5 2 E – 3 E E F C B A 6 0 2 A } 0 [ 1 ]
    C : \ W i n d o w s \ I n s t a l l e r \ 6 9 6 f 0 . m s i

    The information which is meaningful lies in this file which is the installer for the failed installation (which blocks the other installation).

    Launching this installation (double clicking on the file) will lead to some options like install, repair or remove the product.
    Try using one of them (repair first, as it should solve the problem, then remove) in order to properly end this aborted installation.

  32. Martyn says:

    Works good as a temp workaround but is no sustainable solution for the problem as upon a reboot the problem will return

  33. Someone says:

    I tried this mathhod but i can’t change anything
    the process of Windows Installer takes a lot of RAM in my computer although i don’t install any software

  34. Daniel says:

    This worked a treat. I was having trouble deploying an application using SCCM 2012.
    When I changed the deployment to be not hidden and allow user interaction I could see the dialogue box showing:
    Only one instance of setup may be run at a time
    What was strange was that I could install the application by running the command line – just not via SCCM.
    This solution fixed the issue. Thank you.

  35. Alexis Cantu says:

    Please answer this soon.

    What if I can’t even switch the Manual to Disable? It’s there, but it won’t even let me switch it, or mess with it for that matter.

  36. Rodrigo says:

    You can also do it in CMD, querying the PID and killing it, like this:

    > sc queryex msiserver

    SERVICE_NAME: msiserver
    WIN32_EXIT_CODE : 0 (0x0)
    SERVICE_EXIT_CODE : 0 (0x0)
    CHECKPOINT : 0x0
    WAIT_HINT : 0x0
    PID : 1348
    FLAGS :

    C:\Windows\system32>taskkill /F /PID 1348
    SUCCESS: The process with PID 1348 has been terminated.

  37. kuntal jodder says:

    mam when i opened the windows installation properties the startup type remained uncheked…and i can not disable it.i am using windows 8.

  38. Guru bhullar says:

    Dear Sheryl Canter,
    My self Guru and kindly i would like to say big thank to you for your amazing and kind help.
    I am going to have life changing job interview after few days but i was facing the same reason of Skype log in problem as other people mentioned it above, but fortunately i somehow get to see your useful info. and tried it. It didn’t work first few times but then i thought to give a last shot and i let windows installer disabled for a night and tried next day after putting it back to manual and Hurraaaaaaaaa, Skype got fixed.

    I love you for your work and helping such freak computer user like me.
    I just wanna say that normally i don’t write such comments although i did find few solutions online but for this one i couldn’t stop my self to Thank you. So Dear once i get this job, contact me i might get you some reasonable Airfare. :)

  39. Jon G says:

    Awesome advice! Worked like a charm!



  40. Andrew says:

    Thanks a lot鈥︹

  41. Madhu says:

    For folks on windows 8.1 and having dropdown disabled try this:
    Go to task manager and bring up services.
    Look for msiserver and right click on it. Go to details of that service.
    It will take you to the task associated with it.
    Right click and end process. This will stop the windows installer service.

    Now try to install the new software you are trying to install. It will provide information about the previous installation that failed and ask if you want to proceed with the new install.
    Proceed with the new install and it will try to rollback the failed installation.
    If the roll back does not work just continue.
    It should allow you to install the new program.

  42. Sohaib Furqan says:

    Dear Madhu,
    Out of all the comments posted here, only your solution worked for me. Thanks for the help. I am greatly relieved. Cheers! :)

  43. Josiah says:

    How are you please im facing a problem of installing Autodesk Inventor, its saying

    “Another Autodesk install/update is now occuring on this computer. Please wait for that to complete and then click retry”

    Its now two weeks trying to install it, i tried the above solutions but they are not helping.Please help me im running out of time want to do some work with it.


  44. Lorri says:

    Thank you Madhu, it worked!

  45. Kristin says:

    Thanks!!! Worked like a charm on Windows 7.

  46. adrix says:

    it didnt work i did everything twice and it still didnt work i dont know whats wrong or what

  47. I would like to thank you for the efforts you’ve put in writing this site.
    I’m hoping to see the same high-grade blog posts by you later on as well.

    In fact, your creative writing abilities has encouraged me
    to get my own blog now 馃槈

  48. Jennifer says:

    Yes! Yes! Yes! It worked beautifully. Thank you!

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