What is “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error

To start, javaw.exe is an executable file that belongs to the Java Platform and implements an important function related to Java services. It is also known as Java Web Start Launcher. In fact, this process is not essential for Windows, however, different malfunctions may lead to crashes and errors of apps that are run on Java Platform. After failing to launch a Java-based program, you will be presented with a pop-up message saying

“Windows cannot find javaw.exe. Make sure you typed the name correctly, and then try again.”

Apparently, the problem means that javaw.exe is either missing or corrupted. Sometimes such violations may be caused due to manual or malware intervention that could modify the settings. This is why we have prepared a couple of methods that will help you easily solve the problem and continue using java software without errors.

windows cannot find javaw.exe error

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1. Reinstall or update Java

One of the easiest ways to solve the “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error is updating or reinstalling Java. This will ensure that you install a clean and latest Java version that can be downloaded from the official website. It does not require a lot of time and can be done via the attached instructions down below:

  1. Press Windows + R combination, then paste appwiz.cplto and click OK.
  2. Among the opened list of apps, find and right-click on Java. Then choose Uninstall.
  3. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete removal.
  4. Restart your PC.
  5. After that, go to the official Java website and download the latest version for your system.
  6. Open the downloaded file and click on Install.
  7. Finally, Java has been reinstalled and you can now try to open the conflicting apps.

2. Add the Javaw.exe Path to the Environment Variable Path

Since Windows claims that it failed to find the route of javaw.exe, we can then try to assign the path of the file manually. Rarely Windows fails to identify the location of the file, which needs to be indicated manually as a result. To do this, follow the underneath steps:

  1. Right-click on This PC, then choose Properties.
  2. In the opened window, select the Advanced tab and click the Environment Variables button at the bottom.
  3. After, click the New button under System variables.
  4. Once the New System Variable window appeared, type Path in the Variable name text box.
  5. Then, in the Variable Value text box, paste the path of Java location. If you are not sure where it is located, then you can do the following:
  6. Type javaw into the searching tab next to the Start menu button.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Open file location.
  8. You will then see the path of Java, which you can copy and paste into the Variable Value text box
  9. Once done, click OK to save changes.

Hopefully, Windows will stop failing to find the programs’ path and will finally launch the intended applications without glitches.

3. Scan for malware

As statistics show, malware is now considered one of the most common reasons for many problems on devices. After penetration, it can alter the system settings, therefore, damaging various files that can result in multiple errors. The “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error is not an exception and can pop up due to the presence of malware. This is why we recommend using Norton Antivirus to scan your device for potential threats. Norton Antivirus is high-quality antivirus program that detects malware, causing system problems. Instead of purchasing the program, first you can try free trial version. Periodically scanning your device is highly important to be aware of your system and prevent unnecessary interventions that can put your device under a risk.

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4. Run System File Checker (SFC) scan

Especially after removing malware that could change and damage some settings, Windows offers an in-built feature that is able to scan your device for errors and automatically fix them. To do so, run the following:

  1. Open the Command Prompt by typing cmd into the searching tab next to the Start Menu button.
  2. In the appeared console, you should type the sfc /scannow command and click Enter.
  3. After Windows scans for errors and fixes them, you should restart your computer.

These are the most relevant solutions that can be applied for eliminating the “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error. Most of the steps mentioned in this guide are also effective in solving similar problems since most of the errors are typically related to inner system violations, out-dated, or corrupted software. There are also some utilities that can automatically detect the missing or damaged components and subsequently restore them. However, we insist on downloading such tools only from official/trustworthy websites in order to evade fake offers that can include trojans, viruses, ransomware, and other potentially dangerous malware that can damage your data significantly.

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James Kramer
Hello, I'm James. My website Bugsfighter.com, a culmination of a decade's journey in the realms of computer troubleshooting, software testing, and development. My mission here is to offer you comprehensive, yet user-friendly guides across a spectrum of topics in this niche. Should you encounter any challenges with the software or the methodologies I endorse, please know that I am readily accessible for assistance. For any inquiries or further communication, feel free to reach out through the 'Contacts' page. Your journey towards seamless computing starts here


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