How to Fix "Access Denied" Error When Using Msconfig

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You can disable certain programs by using msconfig. This command allows you to temporarily disable programs that may be causing problems. This feature also serves as a very useful diagnostic tool. If you have or share HP printers, especially the HP PSC 2100, 2200, 4100 and 6100 series, you may receive an error that reads: "An Access Denied error was returned while attempting to change a service." The HP printer software may load a service named PML Driver HPZ12, which is added to the services section of msconfig. This service handles many functions pertaining to the communication between the computer and the printer. However, many of these functions are not related to printing, so you can fix the “Access Denied” error by disabling the service.

  • Click on the Start button, located on the bottom-left corner of your screen. Click "Run" and then type regedit. Click "OK." This will open the Registry Editor.

  • Navigate to the registry key named HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\ System\CurrentControlSet\Services\ PML Driver HPZ12. Click the pluses (+) for each desired section until you reach the registry key. You may need to scroll down to navigate to the "PML Driver HPZ12" entry.

  • Look in the column to the right-hand side for the the entry labelled "Start." Double-click on this entry. this will open a dialogue window labeled "Edit DWORD Value."

  • Change the value in the "Value Data" text box from 2 (Automatic) to 3 (for Manual). Click the OK button.

  • Close the Registry Editor once you have done this. Restart your computer. You should now be able to use the msconfig utility to make changes without having to deal with the “Access Denied” error.

  • Try reinstalling your HP printer software to see if the error occurs every time you install the program.

Tips & Warnings

  • *The complete statement of the “Access Denied” error will state: "An access denied error was returned while attempting to change a service you may need to log on using an administrator account to make the specified changes." This Windows error may occur even if you are logged into an administrative account, or if you have only one account on the PC.
  • *Installing a Deskjet 6600 or 6800 and the PhotoSmart printers may also cause the error. Installing some Windows updates are another cause for receiving the error message.
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