Steps to Remove STOP 0xC000021A {Fatal System Error}

One of our readers was facing this problem that when he tries to shutdown the PC, he gets a blue screen with this error message.

Causes of this error:

This error occurs solely when either the process Winlogon.exe or Csrss.exe fails to load. This error is a way used by the Windows Kernel to notify that these processes failed to run and this can be due to:

•    Installation of hardware or software that interfered with these processes.
•    Improper installation of Service Pack.


1.    Without trying something technical, the first step should be to “Restore” the system (I have seen this step solving the problem). Restore the system to a state some 3-4 weeks ago when the system was working fine. Remember to restore it to a state some 3-4 weeks before (2-3 days would not work).

All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> System Restore

2.    Using Dr. Watson as the default system debugger.
•    To configure it, type “Drwtsn32.exe” in the run dialog and select following options:

Append to existing log file
Visual Notification
Create crash dump

•    Now when the error occurs next time, just log in to the system and view the Dr. Watson log to check out the cause of the problem. (The log file path can be known from the dialog that appeared during configuration).

•    The log file will give you the actual cause of the problem, so just remove the cause.

•    If the problem occurred after you have installed some application, then uninstalling it should fix the problem.

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