how to fix could not load or run c:\users\ap

November 25, 2010 at 10:53:43
Specs: Windows Vista
Hi. I've been trying to find a solution to this problem but I'm not an expert on computers and I'm at my wits end. everytime a start my pc I get this msg ( could not load or run c:\users\appdata\local\temp\dwm.exe specified in the registry.) can anyone plz help me

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November 25, 2010 at 14:20:33
dwm.exe is normally the Vista Desktop Window Manager (DWM). However it it is normally located in C:\Windows\System32

The fact that this version is supposedly in c:\users\appdata\local\temp is highly suspicious. Having said that it appears not to be found there anyway.

Read more here:

Thus at start up there is something in your registry that seeks to start up this suspicious application but then you get an error because it is not found.
It is possible that you may have run some malware / trojan cleaner software (or similar) which may have deleted the offending file (or you may have inadvertantly deleted it yourself) but not removed the registry entry that seeks to run it at start up.

You could check your registry to see where it is being run from.
If you are sure that you do not need it then deleted the offending entry from your registry.

A free tool call hijackthis found at:
is quite useful for examining the registry for suspicious looking entries.
Be careful of the temptation of using the fix feature. Only do this if you are sure that you want to delete a particular entry in the registry.

DO NOT post a HiJackThis log here unless an expert has requested it. Instead, please ask in plain english about what is wrong with your computer. You also may want to look at the automated HiJackThis analyzer by clicking here:

To search for the offending entry manually in the registry:
start > run, then type regedit in the box that pops up and click OK
A Registry Editor screen will pop up
From here drill down (click on the + symbol) to:

--------------------Click on Run

You may find the offending "c:\users\appdata\local\temp\dwm.exe" listed here
If you are happy you want to delete it then click on that entry on the right hand side part of the screen and right click and select delete to remove that entry.

File > Exit to come out of regedit.

Reboot the PC and you should no longer see the message.

Registry Editor is powerful and useful but has to be used with great care. It is quite easy to mess things up if not used properly

When everything else fails, read the instructions.

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February 20, 2011 at 17:29:14
You can find a little bit more info here including a video to show you how to remove/disable it. dwm.exe

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