McAfee client always shows the system state as inactive

Vladimir Popescu
by Vladimir Popescu
Managing Editor
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Client always shows the system state as inactive - McAfee

A large number of people have complained on different online forums that their McAfee client isn’t working properly. The application always shows the system state as being inactive, no matter what changes they make in the settings of the software.

This issue can be frustrating over time, as it doesn’t allow you to be sure that you are being protected from online threats. The error we’re discussing can be caused by either the Windows Boot Loader or Boot Manager not working properly, or a disk space problem.

The McAfee Drive Encryption [DE] process is the source of this error message, and we will need to use an elevated command prompt to fix it.

In today’s fix article we will discuss the best method to apply in this situation, and get back to exploring the online realm without any security risks. Read on to find out more.

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How do I fix the McAfee system state error?

McAfee website - Client always shows the system state as inactive

You will need to open up an elevated command prompt and run the commands listed below to solve both of the possible causes of this error. Depending on the version of McAfee that you use, the solution to the problem will differ, as it is being caused by different elements.

In one of the cases, the problem is caused by the Boot Loader, and in the other case, it is caused by not having enough free hard disk space available on the drive that you’re trying to encrypt. Read on to find out the solution.

Note: To find out what caused the problem in your case, please see the MfeEpe.log on the client records.

1. Windows Boot Configuration Data problem

Laptop close-up - Client always shows the system state as inactive

  1. Press the Win+X keys on your keyboard to open the Start sub-menu.
  2. Choose the Windows PowerShell (Admin) option.
  3. Copy-paste this command inside the command prompt window: Bcdedit /set {default} path \Windows\System32\Winload.efi
  4. Press Enter to run the command.
  5. Copy-paste the following command: Bcdedit /set {bootmgr} path \Efi\Microsoft\Boot\Bootmgfw.efi
  6. Press Enter to run the command.
  7. Close the PowerShell window and restart your PC

Note: If you want to get a full understanding of this problem, you can visit the official McAfee Knowledge Center.

Windows Powershell has stopped working? Don’t worry, we’ve got the right solution for you.

2. Drive encryption error relating to disk space

Computer in the dark - Client always shows the system as inactive

  1. Defragment the hard-drive that doesn’t have enough disk space available (See this link for more details).
  2. Press the Win+X keys and choose the Windows PowerShell (Admin) option.
  3. Inside the elevated command prompt, run this command: CHKDSK /r
  4. After the process is completed, please restart your system.
  5. Manually shrink the drive that’s causing the problem using the Microsoft Disk Partition tool named DISKPART (Click here for more information about how to do this).

Note: For a more detailed description of the problem and to see the actual error message, please visit the McAfee Knowledge Center.


In today’s fix guide we explored both of the possible causes for the McAfee error that doesn’t allow the software to show the correct system state, and we offered a quick solution for each of them.

Because this can expose your system and data to various risks online, it becomes an even more important issue if it is left unsolved for a long period of time.

We hope that this guide offered you a solution to the problem you encountered. Please feel free to let us know if this article helped you, or if you have any suggestions. You can contact us by leaving a comment in the box found under this article.

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