Sometimes Google Chrome might not start due to DLL (Dynamic Link Library) errors. One of Chrome’s most common DLL error messages states:
The program can’t start because chrome_elf.dll is missing from your computer. Try reinstalling the program to fix this problem.
That’s an error message numerous users have posted about on support forums. If the elf.dll error arises when you try to launch Chrome, check out some of the potential resolutions below.
Five potential fixes for Chrome’s elf.dll error
1. Run a System File Checker scan
System File Checker is among the most reliable tools for DLL errors as it can repair corrupted DLL files.
- Open Run with the Windows key + R hotkey.
- Enter cmd in the Open box, and click the OK button.
- Then input DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth in the Prompt’s window, and press the Return key.
- After that, input sfc /scannow in the Command Prompt; and press the Enter key.
- If Windows Resource Protection repairs something, restart the desktop or laptop.
2. Copy elf.dll into Chrome’s Application folder
- Click the File Explorer taskbar button.
- Open Chrome’s Application folder in File Explorer.
- The default path for that will be something like this:
- C: > Program Files (x86) > Google > Chrome > Application.
- Then click the folder with the version number title, which will be something like 79.0.3945.130.
- Right-click chrome_elf.dll and select Copy. If you can’t find an elf.dll there, you can get a replacement from DLL-Files.com as outlined in the next resolution.
- Return to Chrome’s Application folder.
- Right-click an empty space within the Application folder and select Paste.
- Open Chrome from its Applications folder.
3. Get a new elf.dll from DLL-Files.com
- It is generally discouraged to download DLL files from websites, but DLL-Files.com is one source user reviews confirm helps fix missing DLL errors. Open the elf.dll page on DLL-Files.com.
- Click download for the elf.dll file that matches your Chrome version.
- Also note that you must download a 32 or 64-bit file that matches your 32 or 64-bit Chrome browser.
- Double-click the downloaded ZIP for the DLL file.
- Click the Extract all button.
- Click Browse to select a path for the extracted file.
- Click the Extract button.
- Move the elf.dll from the extracted folder into Chrome’s directory.
- If that doesn’t fix the issue, move the elf.dll file into either C: > Windows > SysWOW64 (32-bit DLLs) or C: > Windows > System32 (64-bit DLLs).
- Restart Windows after moving the DLL.
4. Roll back Windows with System Restore
- System Restore might also come in handy for fixing the elf.dll error. Right-click Windows 10’s Start button and select Run.
- Input rstrui in Run’s Open box, and click the OK option.
- Click the Next button to open the restore points list below.
- Select a restore point that predates the elf.dll error on your desktop or laptop.
- If you’re not sure, select the earliest restore point.
- Click the Scan for affected programs button, which opens the window shown directly below.
- Click the Next and Finish buttons on the System Restore window.
5. Reinstall Google Chrome
- Open Run.
- Enter appwiz.cpl in Run, and click the OK option.
- Select Chrome in the Programs and Features applet.
- Click Uninstall.
- Press the Uninstall button on the dialog box.
- Restart Windows after uninstalling Google Chrome.
- Click Download Chrome on the browser’s page to get the installer for the latest version. Then reinstall the browser.
Those resolutions will probably be enough to fix the elf.dll error for a lot of users. In addition to those, try scanning for malware with Malwarebytes or Windows Defender.
Which of the above procedures worked for you? Leave your answer and any other questions or suggestions in the comments area below.