This is what you can do if Windows cannot find javaw.exe

Matthew Adams By: Matthew Adams
3 minute read

Home » Fix » This is what you can do if Windows cannot find javaw.exe

Javaw.exe is a process that launches Java programs. However, a “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error message can pop up for some users when they try to launch Java software.

The full error message states: Windows cannot find javaw.exe. Make sure you typed the name correctly, and then try again. These are some of the best fixes for that error message.

Potential Fixes for the Javaw.exe Error

1. Scan for Malware

The “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error can be due to malware. So, a malware scan with Malwarebytes could be a potential resolution. Click the Free Download button on the Malwarebytes website to download and install that software.

Then open the software, and press the Scan Now button. Malwarebytes will quarantine anything the scan detects.

2. Add the Javaw.exe Path to the Environment Variable Path

The javaw.exe error often arises because Windows can’t find the Java program. So, adding the exact javaw.exe path to system variables often fixes the “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error.

Follow the guidelines below to add a new javaw.exe system variable path.

  • Press the Windows key + R to launch Run.
  • Input ‘sysdm.cpl’ in Run and click OK to open the window shown directly below.

  • Select the Advanced tab.

  • Press the Environment Variables button to open the window in the snapshot below.

  • Click the New button under System variables to open a New System Variable window.
  • Enter ‘Path’ in the Variable name text box.

  • Then input the exact path of your javaw.exe file. The default javaw.exe path would be something like C:Program Files (x86)Javajre7bin or C:Program Files (x86)Javajre8bin on 64-bit Windows platforms.
  • If you’re not sure what path to enter, press the Windows key + Q hotkey to open Cortana. Then enter ‘java’ in the search box.

  • Right-click javaw and select Open file location.
  • Thereafter, File Explorer will open the folder that includes javaw.exe. Enter the folder path open in File Explorer into the Variable value text box on the New System Variable window.
  • Press the OK button on the New System Variable window.
  • Click OK on the Environment Variables window.

3. Reinstall Java

  • Reinstalling Java might also fix the javaw.exe error for users with antiquated Java versions. To reinstall Java, enter ‘appwiz.cpl’ in Run and click OK.

  • Select Java and click Uninstall.
  • Select the Yes option on the dialog box that opens.
  • Restart Windows after uninstalling Java.
  • Open the Java download page in a browser.

  • Then click Windows Offline or Windows Offline (64-bit) to download the Java installer. Users with 64-bit Windows platforms should select to download both installers if they utilize both 32 and 64-bit software versions.
  • Click the Java installer file to open the setup window below.

  • Press the Install button on that window.

Those are three resolutions that will probably resolve the “Windows cannot find javaw.exe” error for most users. Then users can open their Java programs with the javaw.exe error fixed.

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