XAMPP Apache won’t start on Windows 10 — a fix

At work yesterday I discovered that the localhost Apache web server on my PC wouldn’t start; it was running XAMPP.

Each time I tried to start Apache from the XAMPP control panel I got these error messages in the console:

08:59:34 [Apache] Attempting to start Apache app…
08:59:35 [Apache] Status change detected: running
08:59:35 [Apache] Status change detected: stopped
08:59:35 [Apache] Error: Apache shutdown unexpectedly.
08:59:35 [Apache] This may be due to a blocked port, missing dependencies,
08:59:35 [Apache] improper privileges, a crash, or a shutdown by another method.
08:59:35 [Apache] Press the Logs button to view error logs and check
08:59:35 [Apache] the Windows Event Viewer for more clues
08:59:35 [Apache] If you need more help, copy and post this
08:59:35 [Apache] entire log window on the forums

Fix

Reinstalling XAMPP didn’t fix the issue. But this did, spotted on the ever-wonderful Stackoverflow:

  1. Press Windows + R to bring up the Windows Run… dialog.
  2. Type services.msc and click OK.
  3. Scroll down the list of services to find World Wide Web Publishing Service.
  4. Right-click it and select Properties.
  5. Change the Startup type to Manual.
  6. Click Stop and wait for the service to stop.
  7. Click OK.
World Wide Web Publishing Service properties dialog
This is the naughty culprit

That fixed it. Now Apache is running, as evidenced by the green light on the XAMPP control panel:

XAMPP Control Panel
Both Apache httpd and MySQL are running

Published by

Gareth Saunders

I’m Gareth J M Saunders, 47 years old, 6′ 4″, father of 3 boys (including twins). Scrum master at Vision Ltd, Dundee. Latterly, web architect and agile project manager at the University of St Andrews and former warden at Agnes Blackadder Hall. Enneagram type FOUR and introvert, I am a non-stipendiary priest in the Scottish Episcopal Church, I sing with the NYCGB alumni choir, play guitar, write, draw and laugh… a lot.

11 thoughts on “XAMPP Apache won’t start on Windows 10 — a fix”

    1. same here, I ended up renaming previous xampp install so it could install to c:\xampp and everything works now.

      So, when I switch between them (I have an old php 5.2.9 install that I need for some legacy stuff) I’ll just rename the dirs appropriately.
      Bit of a pain, but oh well, I needed php7.

    1. I’m sorry that didn’t work for you. Are you using the latest version of Xampp? In the past I’ve also found that it didn’t work because it was clashing with port-allocation resources such as Skype—changing the port that Skype uses (i.e. moving away from port 80) resolved things.

    1. It only displays if you have the “Internet Information Services” feature of Windows installed.

      You can see if you have or not by going to Control Panel > Programs and Features > Turn Windows features on or off and checking if there is a tick next to “Internet Information Services” and its sub-items.

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