Kernel Security Check Failure: How we fixed this error

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
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  • The meaning of the Kernel Security Check Failure in that one or several files failed a compatibility or integrity check and you have to update or replace it. The most common reason for this are the outdated drivers when you upgraded Windows to a new version.
  • System File Checker is a utility in Microsoft Windows that allows users to scan for and restore corruptions in Windows system files. Read everything about it in our complete guide.
  • We wrote extensively about Windows 10 errors. If you experience any other issue please refer to our hub.
fix Kernel Security Check Failure errors
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10 quick solutions to fix Kernel Security Check Failure

  1. Enable legacy advanced boot menu
  2. Use System File Checker and Memory Diagnostic
  3. Check the memory slot
  4. Check your hard drive
  5. Update your PC
  6. Scan your PC
  7. Check your disk for errors
  8. Kernel Security Check Failure after overclock
  9. Run System Restore
  10. Run Safe Mode

If you are reading this article, it means that you have gotten the Kernel Security Check Failure Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) error.

Many other users who upgraded their operating system toWindows 10 have experienced this issue. Indeed, Kernel Security Check Failure on Windows 10 install occurs more frequently than you might think.

Fortunately for you, by reading the lines below you will get a clue as to why you have this issue and what you need to do to fix this Windows Kernel BSOD onWindows 10.

Kernel Security Check Failure
The Kernel Security Check Failure PC error can occur for various reasons like memory issues, virus infections, and more.

However, the most common reason is that the drivers you were using for the previous Windows version are not compatible with the new Windows version.

As a result, the OS gives you the Kernel Security Check Failure error message followed by the 0x000000139 error code.

In this article, we’ll explain why this issue occurs and how you can fix it.

There are two possibilities to this issue, either you can get into your Windows 10 PC and from time to time you get the “Kernel Security Check failure” Blue Screen of Death, or you simply cannot log in to your operating system and your device gives you this error message every time you power it up.

The annoying Kernel Security Check Failure error often occurs in the following situations:

  • Kernel Security Check Failure after sleep
    • This error may occur after waking your PC from sleep.
  • Kernel Security Check Failure after RAM upgrade
    • Users report that this error message sometimes occurs after they insert a new RAM card.
  • Kernel Security Check Failure when playing games
    • If there is one thing that gamers hate, that is getting interrupted when playing their favorite games.
    • If you’re a gamer, you probably already encountered this error quite a few times.
  • Kernel Security Check Failure when using particular apps and programs
    • It seems that particular apps and programs trigger the kernel security error more frequently than others.

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If you cannot log in at all into Windows 10 then follow the steps below:

We’ve written extensively about Kernel security issues before. Bookmark these guides in case you need them later.

How do I fix Kernel Security Check errors?

1. Enable legacy advanced boot menu

  1. Restart your computer and insert a Windows 10 bootable media into the optical media drive. For more information on how to create a Windows 10 bootable media, check out this article.
  2. On the displayed Windows Setup box, click Next
  3. On the next page, click on Repair your computer
  4. On the Choose an option screen, click TroubleshootKernel Security Check Failure
  5. Click on Advanced optionsKernel Security Check Failure fix
  6. Now select Command PromptKernel Security Check Failure fix error
  7. On the newly opened Command Prompt window, type C: and hit Enter.
  8. On C: prompt, type the following command and press Enter to enable legacy advanced boot menu:
    • BCDEDIT /SET {DEFAULT} BOOTMENUPOLICY LEGACYKernel Security Check Failure fix
  9. Once the command executes successfully, type EXIT to close the Command Prompt window.
  10. Go back to the ‘Choose an option’ screen, click Continue and start your computer normally.

If this method didn’t fix your blue screen Kernel Security Check Failure issue, use the solution below.

2. Use System File Checker and Memory Diagnostic

  1. If Windows 10 fails to start correctly, go to Settings , select Advanced Startup to open the ‘See advanced repair options’ menu
  2. In the new window, left click or tap on Troubleshoot
  3. Go to Advanced Options and click or tap on Startup Settings.Kernel Security Check Failure fix
  4. Left-click the Restart button located on the lower right side of the screen.
  5. Your operating system should boot with the minimum system requirements.
  6. When your PC has booted, move the mouse over to the upper right side of the window.
  7. Left-click the Search feature located on the menu.
  8. In the search box, type cmd.
  9. Launch Command Prompt as an Administrator.kernel check failure fix
  10. Type the following command: sfc /scannow and hit Enter.Kernel Security Check Failure fix
  11. Wait until the scanning process completes. Type Exit to close the Command Prompt window and hit Enter.
  12. Move the mouse cursor again over to the upper right side of the screen.
  13. Go to the Search feature.
  14. In the search box, type memory, and select Windows Memory DiagnosticKernel Security Check Failure fix
  15. Run as administrator and select Restart now and check for problemsKernel Security Check Failure fix
  16. After reboot, the OS will automatically check your RAM and display the possible reasons as to why you get the Blue Screen of Death error.
  17. Reboot your PC normally.
  18. Check to see if the Kernel Security Check Failure BSOD error persists.

Learn everything about System File Checker and your nightmare with Windows errors will end!

3. Check the memory slot

Don’t forget to check the memoryslot to make sure it’s properly placed into the socket and functioning correctly.

It is always a safe bet to try and replace the memory slot or change the slot in which it is plugged into the motherboard. Reboot your PC to see if the stop code Kernel Security Check Failure persists.

4. Check your hard drive

Make sure that your hard drive functions correctly. More specifically, make sure that it is plugged in correctly into your device. If you have a spare hard drive, try changing it to see if it starts correctly.

Now, if your operating system starts and only gives you this Windows Kernel error occasionally, continue with the following steps below.

Editor’s Note: This article continues on the next page with more solutions to fix Kernel Security Check Failure BSOD errors. If you want to read more about Blue Screen of Death errors, check out our collection of guides.

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Editor's Note: This article was originally published in October 2017 and was revamped and updated in November 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.
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  • Hi. i get this problem when i try to play Animal Jam on my Samsung Laptop. when i log in to play it scrolls down and shows me that message…. uhmm….. help?

  • It’s true. No where does it say you have to pay until you waste 15 minutes letting it scan, then it randomly asks for a key to repair the problems…..

  • hi i have windows 10 installed and microsoft support has told me that i have an video driver problem and the computer shuts off just for no reason i have tried to do an repair install windows 10 and shuts off every time it finishes and its while it is searching for updates it shuts off most of time in full screen apps or games (this did not happen in windows 7 ) if any one knows how to fix this please let me know

  • I’ve only had this show up when i tried to get into the programs and i needed for work AFTER i hardwired my computer to my modem (which my job requires), why is that? I was using them for over a month beforehand until i attempted this

  • I get these almost weekly on this Windows 8.1 laptop I bought back in August. (And got freshly wiped last month.)

    Did a memtest which returned no errors…

    • well dont take what i said. it appears again. im taking action now lol
      but the driver reviver software is paid. anything that is free and safe, tell me.

    • I am also having this problem with a fresh install on an older Dell inspiron N7010. I can’t install windows 7/8/10. But it will boot an old version of vista that we have on an older hard drive……

  • Hi there, just wondering how to confirm if I need to replace the hard drive or RAM? Is it if the same error shows up after all those steps? Or is there another check?

    I have an ASUS UX501J Notebook running Windows 8.1 (64-bit) with 512GB SSD, 16 GB DDR3 Ram. I had some issues with the NVIDIA driver (I currently run version 361.75), which I think I fixed with the CCleaner Registry fix. Running a McAfee scan now – I don’t think there are any problems.

    I’m still worried about the blue screen though, because this is a relatively new computer (less than a year old) and I had done a system reset last month, because it was caught in an auto recovery loop.

    I can start up my computer fine for now, but the kernel security check failure has me worried about a hard drive/RAM failure. Any ideas?

    • Happening to me too, ASUS as well. It seems that it is the network adapter for me. It’s crashing and causing errors within windows.

    • ^^^^^^^^^^^^^ Read this ^^^^^^^^^^

      You are the man! You saved my life, I was sweating bullets because I thought my 3000$ laptop was doomed…

      • right click on my computer, go to manage, navigate to device manager (left pane), open display adapters (right pane), now right click on your nVidia device and open properties, go to driver tab, the third button there is “roll back driver”.

        if you can’t roll back, then uninstall the driver from control panel, restart your computer, and install the older version of your graphics driver.

        • I can’t roll back the driver… How do I know what’s the previews version of it and how do a download it?

        • I followed up your clear insturctions thnx! For now the BSOD is gone when i open photoshop. For the driver of NVidia is it updating automatically? Where can i controll when updates are done or are the update included from windows updates? And where can i see when it was updates. I have 801 and PS6 working fine for months before is got this BSOD suddenly.

          • Welcome,
            The nVidia drivers updates method differs by the version of windows.
            for windows 10, it is done through windows update which is pain in the butt because although you can delay it, it will finally install.
            but for windows version like vista, 7, 8, 8.1 the nVidia application (called as geforce experience) updates the drivers. it is controllable mean you can choose not to update the drivers.

      • I do not remember, Windows 10 was automatically updating my drivers so I had to format my PC and install Windows 8. Windows 10 was released in June 2015 so any driver before that date would work fine. hope it helps

  • I get the same message when I want to open a video on youtube in fullscreen…
    I think the problem stated after installing drivers for a wireless d-link wifi antenna AC1200 (for windows 10).
    can these drivers get in conflict with eachother or something like that?

    • The same problem I had. After almost having a heart attack, I then thought about updating (manually) all my lappy drivers… Voilá, problem solved… until tonight :o((( Now I got this “Kernel Sec Check Failure Error” And all these crap is happening after I upgraded to Windows 10 (which I’m in love with) Will try the fix here and see how it goes ;o) Did you get to fix your problem?


    There is an issue with the latest GEFORCE driver (361.43) on some systems particularly with but not inclusive to applications that use OpenCL hardware acceleration.

    Rolling back the NVIDIA graphics driver to the previous stable version is recommended until the issue is fixed.

      • Go to devicemanager, screenadapters, and look up your graphics card. Right click your card, click properties. Switch to driver tab, there you will see a button that says, “rollback to previous version”. A warning will pop up, click ok to rollback. Wait a few secs as your screen will flash/turn black. After a while it’s done and you got previous version.

    • OKAY! no bluescreen when launching premiere this time i’ll do some test to see if the problem really was fixed just by installing the earlier december 2015 geforce driver. wow thanks a lot dude I had kinda crossed the graphics card out already since it was up to date.

      And for victor you can find the old drivers from nvidiacom/Download/index.aspx by searching your card and choose the last stable version before the latest one. then just install the driver over the latest one (delete old one etc. google a tutorial)

    • I should thank you, because I have resolved my problem with the same method. Uninstalled GeForce 361.43, and re-installed GeForce 359.06 then BSOD ‘Kernel Security Check Failure’ is no more. Thanks a lot.

  • I have ‘Kernel Security Check Failure’ problem in my Windows 10, when I start Photoshop. I did everything that was in the instructions, but it did not help. What can I do?

  • I have ‘Kernel Security Check Failure’ problem in my Windows 8.1, in my case BSOD came up almost as soon as I run ACDSee Pro 8. I get this error as soon after I run the application for the second time after resetting my PC. Before going through this the previous origins of the problem isn’t the same where it came up during shut down or restart moments. As a decent user I had no idea other than resetting my PC, but in the end it persists. I would be grateful if this doesn’t continue.

  • Guys can you please help me?! I’m a digital drawer, and my main program is photoshop. But just in the start of december it just started making my computer/laptop crash! Now i’ve done some of these solutions, but none of them work. Another thing is that it’s only this adobe program that makes it crash, and rarely it wanna start up. If any experts in this subject are seeing this, plz help!

    • Exactly, I’m also a digital artsit and this as been a new issue for my Photoshop as well. I’ve even replaced PS2014 with 2015, and still it crashes ONLY when I try to use PS.

      • Okay, so i know that this solution already have been written about earlier in this thread, but try going to iobit’s website, and download the program, run a full scan and driver booster. Restart your computer, and you should be good to go 🙂 it worked for me, so it probably also works for you

  • Here’s my issue when I log in I get a message saying critical error: start menu and cortana aren’t working we’ll try to fix it for you next time you sign in and if I sign out and try to shut down it gives me the blue screen thing and doesn’t ever let me shut down if anyone can help me thanks a lot

  • Even me getting the same error there is no issue with memory or RAM as mine is 8GB & 500GB HD I installed through bootable pen drive

  • I replaced my RAM ,HDD, even motheboard also then also i m getting same error and cant able to install windows for first time also what should i do now.

  • How can I do any of this when as far as I get when turning laptop on is blue with the kernel error for 3 seconds and then try to reboot and does it again all day if you want to sit there and watch it.
    1 of the fixes was to insert the bootable media how can it be done when every one got windows 10 on a free download. Please explain

  • Somebody else’s fix to the problem won’t necessarily fix yours. It could be that their graphics card drivers are the issue but, it could be something completely different with your system. Iobit has a free driver update program, this could also help to check drivers are up to date throughout the system.

  • well i had this error as you said drivers not compatible my last wifi update not stable at all and when i run the diagnostic for it it crashed

  • i replaced my mobo to test pc and then put it back in. Since then i got numerous BSoDs but i switched my memory slots about and now randomly my pc crashed with this Kernel error, it is the only one which i get now. However this happens at random, in the last hour it has happened twice, but the previous four days there wasn’t a single occassion where this happened. what would be the best course of action for me?

  • Makes no sense to go to the ‘advanced repair options mentioned in step 1 if you can’t log on! WHERE are these advanced repair options when you only see a blank screen!

  • This is garbage, why are telling us to download Driver Reviver? You can use Driver Pack Solution on-line, without installing shit programs. You already finished off someones computer with Method 3…

  • I did Method 3 and it has seemed to severely reduce the frame rate on my PC across the board on all games and programs I run. How can I fix this?

  • Im getting one of those Kernel_security_check_failures on a new laptop, 2 months old, Im getting them everyday and then the computer reboots… Ive scans for malware and viruses and tried to use ccleaner to scan for registry problems and Ive also done chkdsk scan on c: with out finding any problems, is there any solution to this regular deaths screens, they happen at random when there’s hardly any application running and Ive still no solution to it?

    • Mine’s about the same problem but it only happens occasionally, I’m worried that this might affect the overall longevity of my laptop :s

    • reinstall your drivers all of them to make sure
      make sure you downloaded the right one from your laptop website
      i had the same problem my last wireless driver update gave my the same failure every time i run a diagnostic just i reinstalled the old driver