Error 1603: Fatal Error During Installation [FIXED]

Jonny Lin, in Common error Tags: Windows

You may encounter an error with a code of 1603 when you are attempting to install something on your Windows. The error message is basically something like “Error: -1603 Fatal error during installation.” It usually occurs when you are using a Windows Installer package to install the program.

You can try the methods below that can be help you fix the error.

1) Change installation location

2) Completely uninstall the same program installed

3) Start and re-register Microsoft Installer service

4) Acquire full permissions on the drive for installation

1) Change installation location

You may encounter an error 1603 because the installation location is you choose is not available due to various reasons — such as being encrypted. You can use another installation folder to install the program and see if the error is gone.

2) Completely uninstall the same program installed

If you have previously installed the same program (or its earlier version), the error can occur when you try to install the application again. If you want to install your program successfully, you need to perform a clean uninstall of the one installed on your computer. This means you need to remove all the temporary files and preferences it leaves in addition to the major program.

Sometimes you may lose the desktop shortcut of a program due to some reasons and therefore you may forget that you have installed it. In this case you can go to Control Panel to check if it is still on your computer:

Press Win + R, and enter “control“;

Find and open Programs and Features;

Then you can check if the application is listed here. If it is, uninstall it.



3) Start and re-register Microsoft Installer service

There may be something going wrong with Microsoft Installer service and therefore resulting in error 1603. You can fix the problem by (re)starting and re-registering Microsoft Installer service.

To start Windows Installer service:

a) Press Win + R and enter “services.msc“;

b) Find and double click on Windows Installer;

c) Hit Start button under Service status and hit OK. (If its service status is running, you should click on Stop first and then hit Start.) 

To re-register Windows Installer service:

a) Press Win + R, type “msiexec /unregister” and hit Enter.

b) Press Win + R again and enter “msiexec /regserver“.



4) Acquire full permissions on the drive for installation

It is possible that the error 1603 occurs because you don’t have full permissions on the file location. Try getting the permissions on the drive you are installing your application to and see if this fixes the problem.

a) Open File Explorer, right click on the drive containing the installation location and select Properties.

b) Go to Security tab and click on Edit.

c) Single click on SYSTEM and ensure that the Allow box of every item in Permissions for SYSTEM is checked (if it is checkable). Do the same check for Administrators.

d) Click on OK to go back to Properties dialog. Then click on Advanced.

e) Click on Change Permissions.

f) On Permissions tab, double click on Administrators.

g) Select This folder, subfolders and files for Applies to field and tick all the available basic permissions. After that hit OK.

h) Do the same operation above for SYSTEM.

i) Click on OK all the way out. Now you have acquired full permissions on this drive. Try installing your application and see if the issue is fixed.

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