Full Fix: SESSION4 INITIALIZATION FAILED error in Windows 10

Milan Stanojevic avatar. By: Milan Stanojevic
8 minute read

Home » Full Fix: SESSION4 INITIALIZATION FAILED error in Windows 10

There are many causes for SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED Blue Screen of Death error, and sometimes it can be hard to fix this error. This error will crash Windows 10 and restart your PC in order to prevent damage, so it’s crucial to fix this error as soon as possible.

Fix SESSION4 INITIALIZATION FAILED BSoD error

  1. Update your drivers and Windows 10
  2. Run the BSOD Troubleshooter 
  3. Run the SFC scan
  4. Run DISM
  5. Check the hard drive
  6. Remove problematic software
  7. Reset Windows 10
  8. Check your hardware

Fix – SESSION4 INITIALIZATION FAILED Windows 10 error

Solution 1 – Update your drivers and Windows 10

Keeping your drivers up to date will ensure that your hardware is working properly with Windows 10. If certain driver isn’t fully compatible with Windows 10, you won’t be able to use that hardware properly and you’ll encounter a SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED or any other BSoD error.

In order to avoid all these problems, it’s advised to update your drivers and make sure that you’re using the latest ones. Downloading the latest drivers is fairly simple, and you can do that by visiting your hardware manufacturer’s website and downloading the latest drivers for your device.

Some users prefer downloading drivers by using Device Manager, and while using Device Manager to download drivers is more straightforward, it might not be the most reliable solution. Users reported that Device Manager doesn’t always download the latest drivers, and if you wish to use the latest drivers you should download them directly from the manufacturer’s website.

In addition to downloading drivers, it’s also crucial to download Windows updates. By using Windows Update you’ll get the latest features along with many improvements regarding both hardware and software. BSoD errors are often caused by hardware and software issues, and in order to ensure that your computer is error-free and stable, we strongly advise that you update Windows 10 regularly.

Update drivers automatically

Searching for drivers on your own can be time-consuming. So, we advise you to use a tool that will do this for you automatically. Using an automatic driver updater will certainly save you from the hassle of searching for drivers manually, and it will always keep your system up to date with the latest drivers.

Tweakbit’s Driver Updater (approved by Microsoft and Norton Antivirus) will help you update drivers automatically and prevent PC damage caused by installing the wrong driver versions. After several tests, our team concluded that this is the best-automatized solution.

Here is a quick guide on how to use it:

  1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updaterdriver updater starting window
  2. Once installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
    scanning proccess of Tweakbit driver updater
  3. Upon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
    Automatically Update complete
    Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Solution 2 – Run the BSOD Troubleshooter 

The next thing we’re going to try is Windows 10’s built-in troubleshooting tool. This tool can be used when dealing with various system problems, including the BSOD issues. So, it’s likely to resolve the SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error.

Here’s how to run Windows 10’s built-in troubleshooter.

  1. Open the Settings app
  2. Go to Update & Security > Troubleshoot.
  3. Select BSOD from the right pane and click Run the troubleshooter.
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the troubleshooter.

Solution 3 – Run the SFC scan

Another troubleshooter that could be helpful here is the SFC scan. This is a command-line tool that scans your system for potential flaws, and resolves them, if possible. So, it could also resolve the SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error.

Here’s how to run the SFC scan in Windows 10:

  1. Go to Search, type cmd, and open the Command Prompt as Administrator.
  2. Enter the following line and press Enter: sfc/scannow
  3. Wait for the scan to complete (it will take a while)
  4. The tool will automatically resolve the problem, if possible.
  5. Now, close the Command Prompt and restart your computer.

Solution 4 – Run DISM

And the third troubleshooting tool we’re going to try is DISM. Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM), as its name says, re-deploys the system image, and resolves potential issues along the way. So, it could also resolve the SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error.

We’ll walk you through both standard and the procedure that utilizes the installation media below:

  • Standard way
  1. Right-click Start and open Command Prompt (Admin).
  2. Paste the following command and press Enter:
      • DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
  3. Wait until the scan is finished.
  4. Restart your computer and try updating again.
  • With the Windows installation media
  1. Insert your Windows installation media.
  2. Right-click the Start menu and, from the menu, choose the Command Prompt (Admin).
  3. In the command line, type the following commands and press Enter after each:
    • dism /online /cleanup-image /scanhealth
    • dism /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth
  4. Now, type the following command and press Enter:
    • DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth /source:WIM:X:SourcesInstall.wim:1 /LimitAccess
  5. Make sure to change an X value with the letter of the mounted drive with Windows 10 installation.
  6. After the procedure is finished, restart your computer.

Solution 5 – Check the hard drive

BSoD errors can be caused by corrupted files on your hard drive, and in order to fix this issue it’s advised to run chkdsk scan. To run a chkdsk scan, you need to do the following:

  1. Enter the Advanced Startup (Restart your computer while holding the Shift key).
  2. Choose Troubleshoot > Advanced Options.
  3. Select Command Prompt from the list of options.
  4. When Command Prompt appears, enter the following lines and press Enter after each line in order to run it:
    • bootrec.exe /rebuildbcd
    • bootrec.exe /fixmbr
    • bootrec.exe /fixboot
  5. Some users are also suggesting that you need to run additional chkdsk commands as well. To perform these commands, you need to know drive letters for all your hard drive partitions. In Command Prompt you should enter the following (but remember to use the letters that match your hard drive partitions on your PC):
    • chkdsk /r c:
    • chkdsk /r d:

    This is just our example, so keep in mind that you have to perform chkdsk command for every hard drive partition that you have.

  6. Restart your computer and check if the issue is resolved.

Solution 6 – Remove problematic software

Software can be a common cause for BSoD errors, and if you installed any new software before this error started appearing, be sure to uninstall it and check if that fixes the problem. If the problem still persists, it might be due to a recently updated application or a driver. If you updated any drivers recently, you might have to uninstall them and revert to the previous version. To uninstall a driver, do the following:

  1. Press Windows Key + X to open Power User Menu. Select Device Manager from the list.
    device-manager
  2. Once Device Manager opens you need to find the driver you wish to remove, right click it and select Uninstall from the menu.
  3. If available, check Delete driver software for this device and click OK.
    confirm-uninstall-driver

After you remove a certain driver, restart your PC. After Windows 10 automatically installs the default driver, check if the problem is resolved. If there is no SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED BSoD error, you can continue using the default driver or you can update it, but be sure not to install the same version of the driver that you were previously using.

In addition to drivers, your antivirus software can also cause these types of errors, therefore it’s recommended that you uninstall any third-party antivirus programs that you have installed. Just uninstalling antivirus software might not fix the problem, therefore you need to use dedicated removal tool. Almost every major security company has a dedicated removal tool for its software available for download, so be sure to download it and use it.

Another way to find problematic software is to perform a Clean Boot. To do that, you can do the following:

  1. Press Windows Key + R and enter msconfig. Click OK or press Enter.
    msconfig
  2. Once System Configuration windows opens, select Selective startup and uncheck Load startup items.
    system-configuration
  3. Navigate to Services tab, check Hide all Microsoft services and click the Disable All button. Click Apply and OK to save changes.
    system-configuration-services
  4. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  5. Navigate to Startup tab and right click any item on the list. Choose Disable from the menu. Repeat this step for all entries on the list.
    Task-manager-disable
  6. Once you’re done, close Task Manager and restart your computer.

If the problem is fixed, it means that SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error was caused by certain software. In order to find the problematic software you’ll have to repeat the same steps and enable Services and applications one by one until you find the one that is causing the crash.

Solution 7 – Reset Windows 10

If the SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error is caused by a software, you can easily fix that problem by performing a Windows 10 reset. Resetting Windows 10 will delete all files from your C drive, therefore be sure to create a backup before you start this process. To reset Windows 10, you need to do the following:

  1. Restart your computer while it boots. Repeat this process few times in order to start Automatic Repair. Alternatively, you can just hold the Shift key and click the Restart button.
    restart
  2. Choose Troubleshoot > Reset this PC.
  3. Select Remove everything > Only the drive where Windows is installed > Just Remove my files and click the Reset button.
  4. Follow the instructions and wait for reset process to complete.

If the BSoD still appears even after you performed a reset, it’s most likely that the error is caused by a faulty hardware.

Solution 8 – Check your hardware

Blue Screen of Death errors are often caused by your hardware, and if you installed any new hardware recently be sure to remove it because it might not be compatible with your PC. Most commonly these types of errors are caused by your RAM, therefore you need to check if it’s working properly.

Users reported that this issue might be caused by your SSD, and according to them, after reinstalling Windows 10 on a hard drive the SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error was fixed. It’s worth mentioning that almost any hardware component such as your motherboard, graphic card or network adapter can cause this issue, therefore be sure to perform a detailed hardware inspection.

If you’re still having issues after the inspection, we strongly recommend you to download this tool (100% safe and tested by us) to fix various PC problems, such as hardware failure, but also file loss and malware.

SESSION4_INITIALIZATION_FAILED BSoD error is often caused by hardware issues, and usually the simplest way to fix this error is to check your hardware. However, before checking and replacing your hardware, we urge you to try few other solutions from this article.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in June 2016 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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