Fix “0xc0000005” Error and Have a Hassle-Free Computing Experience

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Hey there! If you’re getting the 0xc0000005 error when trying to launch an app or game, I totally understand how frustrating that can be. As a fellow tech enthusiast, I‘ve helped many users troubleshoot this issue over the years. Not to worry – we‘ll get to the bottom of what‘s causing that pesky error on your Windows PC and have you up and running smoothly again in no time!

Fix 0xc0000005 error

The 0xc0000005 error code generally pops up due to these main reasons:

  • Insufficient RAM
  • Attempts to access corrupted memory locations
  • Conflicts with malware or viruses
  • Corrupted system files or drivers
  • Incompatible or faulty software

Based on my experience as a PC repair technician, the most common triggers are insufficient RAM and corrupted system files. Let‘s explore the tell-tale signs of each so you can get a sense of what might be at play on your computer.

If you notice the error happening when multi-tasking or using memory-intensive programs, insufficient RAM is likely the culprit. 4GB is the bare minimum these days for a smooth Windows experience. Upgrading to 8GB or 16GB can work wonders if you run into this error frequently.

On the other hand, if the error pops up randomly even when your PC seems to have plenty of free RAM, corrupted Windows system files are probably to blame. This happens over time as files get modified, overwritten, or deleted accidentally. The good news is this can be fixed with the built-in System File Checker tool.

Now let‘s get into the nitty-gritty troubleshooting steps to vanquish the 0xc0000005 error for good! I‘ll walk you through all the methods I use that have proven effective through years of trial-and-error.

8 Ways to Fix the 0xc0000005 Error

1. Update or Reinstall Faulty Apps

If you notice the 0xc0000005 error popping up when trying to open a particular program, that application is likely the source of the problem. Try updating it to the latest version or uninstalling and reinstalling a fresh copy. This resolves any installation issues or compatibility bugs that could be triggering that error.

2. Check for RAM Issues

Low RAM or corrupted memory modules can certainly cause frequent 0xc0000005 errors. Here‘s how to diagnose and fix any RAM-related problems:

  • Open the Windows Memory Diagnostic tool to scan for defects
  • Review the scan results for any errors detected
  • If serious memory issues are found, you‘ll likely need to replace your RAM sticks
  • An easy upgrade is to move from 4GB to 8GB or 16GB RAM if you currently have minimal memory

Increasing your RAM is an easy fix that can boost speed and dramatically reduce errors like 0xc0000005.

3. Scan for Malware and Viruses

One sneakier cause of this error is malware modifying system files or memory in the background. I recommend these steps to hunt down and destroy any nasty viruses:

  • Use Windows Security to run a full Microsoft Defender antivirus scan
  • An advanced scan option like Offline Defender Scan is most thorough
  • Delete any infections found
  • Alternatively, use a reputable 3rd party antivirus program to scan the system
  • Malwarebytes and Bitdefender are highly rated choices

You have no idea what kind of chaos viruses can cause in the background – scanning and removing them is always worth it!

4. Update Your Device Drivers

Device drivers essentially allow Windows to communicate properly with all your hardware like your graphics card, CPU, motherboard etc. If these get outdated or corrupted, you can run into errors like 0xc0000005 as Windows has trouble interfacing with components.

Here are a few tips for keeping drivers updated:

  • Open Device Manager, expand categories, right-click each device and select Update Driver
  • Enable automatic driver updates in Windows Update settings
  • Use a driver update utility like Driver Booster to save time updating batches of drivers

Keeping drivers fully updated takes some diligence but prevents so many headaches down the road.

5. Turn Off Data Execution Prevention (DEP)

DEP is a security feature that prevents potentially malicious code from running in protected memory regions. The downside is that some legit programs don‘t jive well with DEP.

Disabling DEP for specific apps is worth a shot:

  • Open System Properties > Advanced > Performance Settings > Data Execution Prevention
  • Select "Turn on DEP for all programs and services except those I select"
  • Add the problematic program‘s .exe to the exceptions list
  • Toggle DEP back on after troubleshooting

You‘ll need to restart the PC for DEP changes to take effect. This tweak can resolve 0xc0000005 conflicts for stubborn programs.

6. Run the System File Checker

Corrupted Windows system files are a common source of 0xc0000005 errors and random crashes. Running the built-in System File Checker can scan for and replace corrupted files with healthy copies.

Here are the steps to run an SFC scan:

  • Open an Admin Command Prompt
  • Type sfc /scannow and hit Enter
  • The scan will run and repair any integrity violations
  • Restart your computer afterwards

I always recommend running SFC scans periodically to fix subtle system file corruptions before they cause bigger issues.

7. Restore Your PC to an Earlier State

If all else fails, performing a System Restore can fix software changes or system modifications that are causing 0xc0000005 errors. This restores your PC back to a time before the problems started.

  • Go to Control Panel > Recovery > Open System Restore
  • Choose a recent system restore point from before the issues began
  • Follow the prompts to complete the restore process
  • Your PC will reboot and be reversed to the restore point‘s state

Just be sure you have a functional restore point saved that predates the 0xc0000005 error.

8. Reset or Clean Install Windows

The nuclear option is completely reinstalling Windows 10 if you can‘t isolate the cause of 0xc0000005. This gives you a blank slate, wiping out any corrupted files or settings.

Before you reset or clean install Windows:

  • Back up any personal data you want to keep
  • Have your Windows license key handy
  • Download the latest Windows ISO file and create bootable media

Resetting or reinstalling Windows takes time but can definitively fix all sorts of stubborn errors, 0xc0000005 included.

Prevent That Pesky 0xc0000005 Error

Once you‘ve conquered the 0xc0000005 error, you‘ll want to avoid seeing it again! Here are a few of my top tips:

  • Update Windows regularly – Keeping Windows 10 completely updated prevents system file corruptions
  • Install enough RAM – 8GB is recommended minimum, 16GB is best for gaming/media creation
  • Use robust antivirus software – Scan for and block malware from wreaking havoc
  • Don‘t install random free software – Stick to trusted programs from reputable sources
  • Update drivers frequently – Especially key components like graphics, WiFi, chipset drivers
  • Run periodic SFC scans – Helps detect and repair system file corruptions
  • Make system restore points – Gives you a backup point to revert to if needed

Well, that about covers everything in my technical toolkit for banishing the 0xc0000005 error! Let me know if any of these strategies do the trick or if you have any other questions. I‘m always happy to help a fellow Windows user get their PC running smooth and error-free. Talk soon!


Written by Alexis Kestler

A female web designer and programmer - Now is a 36-year IT professional with over 15 years of experience living in NorCal. I enjoy keeping my feet wet in the world of technology through reading, working, and researching topics that pique my interest.