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Intuit
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Fix Error 1904

Learn how to fix Error 1904 when you install QuickBooks Desktop.

If you see a message about "Error 1904: [file path / name / extension] failed to register," don’t worry. Your accounting data and company files are in good shape.

Follow these steps to fix Error 1904 and get everything back on track.

Before you start

If any of these apply to you, skip to the special cases section at the bottom.

  • You use Bitdefender
  • You recently installed Adobe Flash
  • The Error 1904 message mentions QBversionTool.dll

Step 1: Run the QuickBooks Install Diagnostic tool

Did you recently upgrade to a new version of Windows? If so, run the QBInstall Diagnostic tool to fix Error 1904. Otherwise, skip this step.

  1. Select Ignore in the message window and finish installing QuickBooks.
  2. Don’t open QuickBooks. This is very important.
  3. Restart your computer.
  4. Download and run the QuickBooks Install Diagnostic Tool.
  5. Restart your computer again.

Now open QuickBooks. If you can open and work in QuickBooks, everything is fixed.

If you still see Error 1904, move on to Step 2.

Solution 2: Manually fix Windows components

If QBInstall and the update didn’t fix the error, you can repair specific Windows components yourself.

However, you should only do these troubleshooting steps you’re an IT professional, confident Windows user, or working with the experts from Microsoft support.

If you can install and open QuickBooks, you’re good to go. If you still see problems, move on to Solution 3.

Step 3: Change your Windows account settings

Switch to the Windows Administrator account to change some settings.

Switch to your Windows Administrator account

  1. Open the Windows Start menu.
  2. Type “CMD” into the search. When you see the CMD Run icon, right-click it and then select Run as administrator.
  3. Type “net user administrator /active:yes” in the command window and press Enter. When the command is complete, close the command window.
  4. Open the Windows Start menu and select sign out.
  5. Select the account that says Administrator and sign in. You won't need a password.

Change your user permissions

  1. Open the Windows Start menu.
  2. Type “File Explorer” into the search and open File Explorer.
  3. Search for C:\Program Files\Common Files.
  4. Right-click the Common Files folder, and then select Properties.
  5. Go to the Security tab, and then select Edit.
  6. In the “Group or user names” section, select Users.
  7. In the “Permissions for Users” section, turn on the following permissions: Modify, Read & execute, List folder contents, Read, Write.This is an image of your permissions for common files for your Windows operating system. You will need to set them for the Users group.
  8. Select Apply and then OK.

Reinstall QuickBooks and sign out

  1. Follow these steps if you need detailed instructions for installing QuickBooks Desktop. This shouldn’t impact any existing company file data.
  2. When the install is finished, open the Windows Start menu and sign out of the administrator account.
  3. Sign in to your usual user account.
  4. Open the Windows Start menu.
  5. Type “CMD” into the search. When you see the CMD Run icon, right-click it and then select Run as administrator.
  6. Type “net user administrator /active:no” in the command window and press Enter. This hides your administrator account.

If you can open QuickBooks with your regular account, you're good to go.

If you still see Error 1904, we recommend reaching out to an IT professional. There may be a general issue with your computer.

Special Cases

If one of these special cases applies to you, follow its specific steps.

You need to add QuickBooks Desktop to your Bitdefender exclusion list. Disabling Bitdefender won’t fix the error.

  • If you have a 32-bit Windows operating system, add “C:\Program Files\Common Files.”
  • If you have a 64-bit Windows operating system, add “C:\Program Files\Intuit (C:\Program Files(x86)\Intuit.”

Check out this Microsoft article if you’re unsure which operating system you have.

  1. Download and run the QuickBooks Install Diagnostic Tool.
  2. When it’s finished, open the Windows Start menu.
  3. Type “Control Panel” into the search and open Control Panel.
  4. Select Uninstall a program.
  5. Select Adobe Flash Player ActiveX from the list and then select Uninstall.
  6. Follow the onscreen instructions to uninstall.
  7. Download and reinstall Adobe Flash Player again.

Follow the first two sections of this article to run the QuickBooks Install Diagnostic tool and change your admin settings.

Then, follow the steps in the following sections until the issue is fixed:

Test your permissions

If you still see Error 1904, run this test to determine if something else is causing the issue:

  1. Open the Windows Start menu.
  2. Type “Notepad” in the Search field. Open Notepad.
  3. Type in “QBTEST” in the note.
  4. Go to the File menu and select Save As. Save it to either “C:\Program Files\Common Files” or “C:\Program Files(x86)\Common Files.”

If you can’t save the note to the folder, you need to sign in and install QuickBooks as an administrator.

Install QuickBooks as an administrator

  1. Open the Windows Start menu and select sign out.
  2. Select the account that says Administrator and sign in. There shouldn’t be a password.
  3. Install QuickBooks as an administrator.

If you still see Error 1904, you should contact an IT professional. There may be a general issue with your computer.

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