Error – Windows cannot start the firewall service

Asked By 140 points N/A Posted on -


I recently updated from windows XP to Windows Vista after I moved into my new home. Back in my old home I had a wireless service and am trying to install one right now in my new home so I am using my LAN cable to connect my laptop to the router. Now the problem I have is that the firewall in my new Windows Vista won’t start and it gives me the same message whenever I start it saying,

“Windows cannot start the firewall service”.

If there is any way I can turn the firewall on please tell me also if it’s a wiring problem like I think it is please inform me.

Best Answer by Michael Corleone
Best Answer
Best Answer
Answered By 0 points N/A #110304

Error – Windows cannot start the firewall service


Hi Pittman,

There are many reasons why a firewall could not start. Some common ones are if you have an Antivirus which also has a firewall and is turned on, or if the windows service(s) that the windows firewall is dependent on is not enabled.

Here are ways to find out and solutions to have the firewall start again.

1. Check your Antivirus – As mentioned above, see if your Antivirus has a firewall service. Antiviruses turn off the windows firewall if theirs is on to avoid conflicts.

2. Windows Services – Check if the Windows Firewall Service is enabled.

  • Click Start > Search bar.
  • Type “services.msc”, press Enter.
  • Look for Windows Firewall Service. Right click and select Properties. Check Startuptype: which should be in Automatic; and Service Status: which should say Started.

3. Windows Firewall Service Dependencies – There are other services that the Windows Firewall Service needs to work. If those services are disabled, Windows Firewall cannot start.

  • Click Start > Search bar.
  • Type “services.msc”.
  • Look for Remote Procedure Call Service and Base Filtering Engine Service.
  • They should be both set to Automatic and Started.

4. Windows Firewall Authorization Driver – We also need to check if the Authorization Driver of the Windows Firewall is running as needed.

  • Click Start>Search bar.
  • Type “devmgmt.msc”, press Enter.
  • In the Device Manager, click View and select Show hidden devices and Show devices by connection.
  • Look for Windows Firewall Authorization Driver, right click and select Properties.
  • Click the Driver tab and check Status: and Type: which should be Started and Demand respectively.
  • Restart your computer.

5. Virus Check – There could be a virus present on your machine; one that slipped by your Antivirus. Viruses and other Malware are known to change settings to allow access to your computer by a remote procedure. If this is the case, the firewall would be one target.

  • Run a full scan of your computer and remove/fix any viruses found.

6. Virus Scan in Safe Mode – There are some virus and other Malware than have been known and programmed to hide themselves from the Antivirus, a good example for this is a Trojan. As the name suggests, it disguises itself as a safe application but does something nasty in the background. Most Malware are not operational in Safe Mode, therefore there is a better chance that the Antivirus or anti Malware can detect these malicious software and get rid of them.

  • Update your Antivirus.
  • Restart your computer and as soon as it lights up hit F8 multiple times until you get to the Windows Advanced Options Menu.
  • Choose Safe Mode.
  • Choose your operating system.
  • Login as the Administrator.
  • Do another scan of your PC.
  • Remove or Fix the infections found.

7. Other Malware – If you have not found any virus and as mentioned above, it may not be a virus at all. It could be a rootkit, spyware, or other malicious software that is changing your settings. Some Antivirus software cannot detect other Malware or at least some of it. You need another layer of protection to make sure your PC is really Malware free.

Try some of these popular Anti-Malware and Anti-Spyware:

  • Spybot Search and Destroy.
  • Malwarebyte’s Anti Malware.
  • Ad-Aware.

Download and install them and run a scan again.

8. System File Checker – This process compares each operating system file with the ones from the on-disk cache. Then it replaces any missing or damaged ones. Have your Windows XP CD ready, System File Checker may need to check it too.

Vista/Windows 7:

  • Click Start > All Programs > Accessories.
  • Right click on the Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator.
  • Put in the password if prompted.
  • In the command line, type in “sfc /scannow”including the space.
  • Have your Windows VISTA DVD ready, System File Checker may need to check it too.

9. Firewall Reset – Using the command prompt, the firewall settings can be reset which may just do the trick.

  • Click Start > All Programs > Accessories.
  • Right click on the Command Prompt and select Run as Administrator.
  • Put in the password if prompted.
  • In the command line, type in “netsh firewall reset” including the space.

10. Vista Startup Recovery – If you have the Windows Vista DVD, it can help you repair most of the errors you encounter.

  • Put in the Windows Vista DVD.
  • Restart the computer.
  • When you see “Press any key to boot from CD or DVD. ” do it.
  • Choose the language, time and keyboard and click Next.
  • Choose Repair your computer.
  • Select the drive where the Vista Operating System is, click Next.
  • Vista will begin searching for errors and try to fix them.
  • If prompted, choose Startup Repair.
  • Your computer might restart several times during the repair process.

11. Also refer to this Microsoft Article for more information: Microsoft Support

Hopefully one or more of these solutions fixes the Windows Firewall. Good luck!

Answered By 574765 points N/A #110305

Error – Windows cannot start the firewall service


If you are having a problem with your Windows Firewall and starts receiving the error “Windows cannot start the firewall service”, maybe there is a problem with the update you did on your operating system. If you switched from Windows XP to Windows Vista, the right procedure is to format your hard drive normally and install the new operating system which is Windows Vista.

When formatting a hard drive, avoid using quick format because it will just erase your hard drive. It is just like doing a simple file delete on the hard drive. While the normal format procedure will perform a thorough check of the hard drive and prepares it for any new operating system installation.

You can use Rizone Security Restore to help fix your Windows Firewall problem. It can be downloaded at It will restore your computers configuration back to default.

Rizone Security Restore supports these operating systems:

  • Windows Server 2003.
  • Windows Server 2008.
  • Windows XP.
  • Windows Vista.
  • Windows 7.

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