Is the cng.sys file missing on your Windows PC? Full guide to fix this

Milan Stanojevic
by Milan Stanojevic
Deputy Editor
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If you’re not familiar with what cng.sys is, it’s a next generation, Windows Operating System file found in your computer.

When this file goes missing, there is a high chance that other Windows related files are missing as well.

Some of the most common reasons for the cng.sys error include:

  • A virus attack
  • Driver conflicts
  • Faulty memory
  • Corrupt registry
  • Hardware failure

The cng.sys file isn’t a threat to your computer though, and as a part of Windows OS, you shouldn’t delete or prevent it from loading each time you start up your computer. This would cause other unexpected errors, or even cause Windows to stop working.

Before you try any solutions, take note of the following because they hinge on the solutions:

  • The make and model of your machine
  • When you received the cng.sys error
  • Whether you have any recently made changes to your computer settings
  • Any recent changes to your computer’s hardware
  • Whether you installed any third party security app

If you’ve received cng.sys related errors such as cng.sys missing, here are some solutions you can try to fix it.

How to fix errors on Windows 10

1. Restore earlier version of Windows

This is one of the fastest ways to resolve the cng.sys error but you have to do it within the 10 days window after upgrading to Windows 10.

This means that if you had an earlier version of Windows prior to the upgrade, then you performed the upgrade, you can only revert to your previous version within that period. Otherwise you’ll have to make do with the new version.

Here’s how to roll back to your previous Windows version to continue enjoying your webcam:

  • Go to Settings
  • Click Updates and Security
  • Click Recovery
  • Select the Go back to an earlier build tab
  • Click Get started
  • Click Next when asked why you have chosen to revert your software

Once you do the above, follow the instructions to return to the previous version for your computer.

2. Download and install pending updates on your computer

Downloading and installing Windows updates (pending) may help to resolve the issue.

install windows 10 pending updates

3. Run a full scan of your computer

If you have the Microsoft Security Scanner, run a full scan of your computer and check if it helps.

Any infected data files may be cleaned only by completely deleting the file in its entirety, meaning there is a possibility of losing data.

You can also use a dedicated tool to remove malware for good.

4. Restart in Safe Mode

The cng.sys file is critical to the functionality of Windows, so any corruption or damage on this file can create serious system errors, which come as the Blue Screen of Death.

In this case, you can restart your computer in Safe Mode to fix the error.

Safe mode starts up your computer with limited files and drivers but Windows will still run. To know whether you’re on Safe mode, you’ll see the words at the corners of your screen.

Here’s how to start your computer in safe mode:

If the cng.sys issue persists, check whether it occurs while your computer is in Safe mode.

There are two versions:

  • Safe mode
  • Safe mode with Networking

The two are similar, though the latter includes network drivers and other services necessary to access the web and other computers in the same network.

Run a System Scan to discover potential errors

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Follow these steps to start your computer in Safe Mode:

  • Click on Start button
  • Select Settings – the Settings box will open up
  • Click Update & Security
  • Select Recovery from the left pane
  • Go to Advanced startup

cng.sys is missing

  • Click Restart now
  • Select Troubleshoot from the choose an option screen, then click Advanced options
  • Go to Startup Settings and click Restart
  • Once your computer restarts, a list of options will come up.
  • Choose 4 or F4 to start your computer in Safe Mode

A quicker way to get into Safe Mode is to restart your computer then do the following:

  • From the Choose an option screen, select Troubleshoot>Advanced options>Startup Settings>Restart
  • Once your computer restarts, a list of options will come up.
  • Choose 4 or F4 to start your computer in Safe Mode

If the cng.sys problem isn’t there while in Safe mode, then your default settings and basic drivers are not contributing to the issue.

Once you start your computer in safe mode, do the following:

  • Right click Start
  • Select Device Manager
  • Expand Display adapters
  • Right click the listed adapter
  • Select Uninstall device
  • Choose the Delete the driver software for this device box
  • Select Uninstall
  • Reboot your computer

Once your computer reboots, click Start, choose Settings, then select Update & Security>Windows Update>Check for updates.

How to exit Safe Mode:

  • Right click Start button
  • Select Run
  • Type msconfig
  • A pop up will open
  • Go to the Boot tab
  • Deselect or uncheck Safe Boot option box
  • Restart your computer

ALSO READ: 10 Best Registry Cleaners for Windows 10

Solution 5: Run disk clean up

Before doing this, ensure you have sufficient disk space on Windows drive.

Here’s how to run disk clean up:

  • Click Start
  • In the search field box, type disk cleanup
  • The disk cleanup drive selection box will appear.
  • Click Ok to set off the disk space calculation process
  • Go to Properties>Tools>Error checking

cng.sys is missing

  • Check the box and click Run

6. Perform a Startup Repair

Blue screen errors associated with cng.sys file can occur if a serious problem causes Windows to shut down, or reboot unexpectedly. Such errors occur due to hardware and software problems.

If you added new hardware before you got the cng.sys error, shut down the computer, remove the hardware, and then reboot (you can also boot in Safe Mode).

Here’s how to use Startup Repair to fix the cng.sys missing error:

  • Tap on F8 key on your computer
  • Do this until you reach Advanced Startup Options menu
  • Choose Repair your computer
  • Click Startup Repair

If these steps didn’t fix the issue, try the steps below:

  • Restart your computer
  • Boot to Advanced Startup Options menu
  • Select Disable automatic restart on system failure

ALSO READ: Operating system version is incompatible with Startup Repair [FIX]

7. Perform an SFC scan to fix cng.sys missing error

This is another great tool for repairing missing or a corrupted .dll file.

Here’s how to perform an SFC scan to fix the cng.sys missing file error:

  • Press Windows + X keys at the same time
  • Click Command Prompt (Admin) to open a command prompt
  • If prompted for permissions, click Yes
  • In Command prompt, type sfc/scannow

sfc scannow

  • Press Enter

8. Visit your computer’s manufacturer website

This is more of a last resort if all else fails. Visit the manufacturer website and install the latest drivers available for your version of Windows (or latest).

Share with us whether any of these worked for you.


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