How To Fix The Error: Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript” For Script

The Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript” For Script… error message may occur when you try to run a program that uses VBScript – a Microsoft programming language modeled on Visual Basic. I encountered this message whilst testing a desktop shortcut which used VBScript to automatically create a system restore point.

VBScript relies upon a specific file (vbscript.dll) being present and correctly registered in Windows. We will review two possible solutions to resolve such an error – the first is to re-register the vbscript.dll file and the second is to repair a specific registry setting.

Re-register The Dll File

1. Open an elevated (admin) command prompt – both options open up a Command Prompt window:

  • XP – click Start \ All Programs \ Accessories \ Command Prompt
  • Vista/Windows 7 – click Start \ All Programs \ Accessories then right click on ‘Command Prompt’ and click on ‘Run as administrator’

2. Carefully type the following, pressing Enter after each line:

cd %windir%\system32
regsvr32 vbscript.dll

You should see a message that the operation succeeded – press OK then close the Command Prompt window.

Tip: if the operation says that vbscript.dll was not found (and you’re sure you ran the command from the system32 folder as above) then try to replace the missing vbscript.dll file by using System File Checker.

3. Run the program that uses VBScript again and see if it works – if it still produces the same Script Engine error, proceed to the next section.

Repair VBScript Language Registry Setting

Be careful when editing the registry – create a system restore point first for safety or take a backup e.g. with the registry backup utility.

1. Open the Registry Editor:

  • XP – click Start \ Run and type regedit into the Run box then press OK
  • Vista/7 – click Start and type regedit into the Search box then press OK

2. In the Registry Editor, browse to the following key:


The entry called (Default) should have a value of C:\Windows\system32\vbscript.dll as shown below (ignore the Default Engine and ThreadingModel entries – you may have different ones):


Correct value of (Default)

However, an old/corrupt antivirus may have set the value of (Default) to something different as shown below:


Incorrect value of (Default) – set by old antivirus (Avast, since uninstalled)

If the value of (Default) is not correct then double click it and change its value to C:\Windows\system32\vbscript.dll and press OK.

Note: if you get an ‘Error Editing Value’ error message when you press OK, you need to change the permissions of the InprocServer32 registry key then try again.

3. Close the Registry Editor and restart the computer.

4. Run the program that uses VBScript again – if the registry setting was the cause of the error it should now work.

Why Is The Registry Change Required?

The (Default) value defines the file to be used by VBScript – by default this is vbscript.dll

Some antivirus programs change it to point to their own .dll file so they process the scripts and can check for signs of malicious behavior – a good thing.

However, this becomes a problem if the antivirus is uninstalled (so it deletes its own .dll file) but does not also change the (Default) value back to the original vbscript.dll location…

In this case, VBScript continues to look for the antivirus .dll file that no longer exists – causing the error message that it can’t be found:



There can be many causes for VBScript error messages but this particular one is often caused by a badly coded uninstall of an antivirus program.

I have seen Avast! uninstallation cause this problem and some people suggest McAfee may also be responsible – doubtless there are several others.

23 Responses to: "How To Fix The Error: Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript” For Script"

  1. CropdusterXX says:

    Thank You…Thank You…Thank You !!!!!! ( for taking the time to post this…)

    In my case, it was an un-install of McAfee that left the remnant in the registry….
    Spent 2 days troubleshooting….wish I would have found this earlier…

    Again….thanks so much,


  2. palissade says:

    thank you. It fixed my problem quickly and properly.

  3. Suzanne says:

    Great info, clear instruction I got this problem when I uninstalled mcaffee to install bullguard but there were 4 files when I opened regedit, so which one do you edit?

    • Joe90 says:

      the one with the name of (Default) assuming it points to some old Mcafee file instead of the correct vbscript.dll file

      • Suzanne says:

        The default values are either blank or it says “value not set”. I tried changing them all but then my laptop would not start normally so I had to start in safe mode, revert the default values to blank and restart the computer again…

  4. Shamel says:

    Just wanted to thank you for the help with this problem I have had. The suggestions and solutions you gave has been fantastic and has helped me immensely. I have been goggling the net for help in this for a while now and you are the first one who has given the correct and real solution.
    The steps and guidelines you gave were easy to follow and very clear and precise.
    Thank you again and best regards

  5. Steve says:

    Exactly what I needed. Relieved some serious frustration!

  6. Ken Mul says:

    this helps me a lot, thank you very much!

  7. Eryk T says:

    Thanks for this information, however it did not work on my windows 7 64 bit machine.
    The first part said it succeeded but my installation file still said Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript”
    so I went on to the next part in the registry, did a FIND on value Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript” and do not have that key apparently. :( So I’m still stuck.

  8. dan says:

    did all of this and still having the problem.

  9. Matthijs Hofstede says:

    It is possible you have multiple instances of this key: HKCR\CLSID\{B54F3741-5B07-11cf-A4B0-00AA004A55E8}\InprocServer32 in that case check all of them.

  10. sayedjamil nami says:

    I did your guidance step by step.
    Thanks for this information, however it did not work on my windows 7 64 bit machine.
    The first part said it succeeded but my installation file still said Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript”
    so I went on to the next part in the registry, did a FIND on value Can’t Find Script Engine “VBScript” and do not have that key apparently.

    • Roy says:

      @sayedjamil – not sure what you’re trying to find there? Just browse down to the registry key given to find the (Default) value

  11. Tony says:

    Stupid Avast after uninstalling leave a link back to scripting in the registry.

    Excellent repair instructions. Thank you!!!!!

    I gave insight “AhAScr.dll” in the Windows registry and deleted all “…….. \ Avast \ AhAScr.dll” and replaced the “C:\Windows\system32\vbscript.dll”

    Thanks for the instructions.

    Excuse my bad translation.

  12. Christian Delgado says:

    I cant find the registry key

    Can someone help me

    • Roy says:

      @Christian – HKCR stands for HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT
      Under that folder you’ll find CLSID (need to scroll down a long way as it does NOT have a full stop before it)
      Within the CLSID folder you should find {B54F3741-5B07-11cf-A4B0-00AA004A55E8} and then the InprocServer32 key within it

  13. AAR says:

    Perfect solution. Thank you.
    and for the record, I uninstalled McAfee before this error. so it was caused by McAfee.

  14. Ralph says:

    I cannot change the value on my laptop.
    A window pops up saying “Error writing
    the value’s new contents”.
    What to do? Any suggestions?

    • Roy says:

      @Ralph – see the Note at the end of section 2 of Repair VBScript section above (the link in blue which says “change the permissions” of the InprocServer32 registry key.

  15. FuriousRanger says:

    Hey Guys! The Very easy way:
    1.Open Notepad.
    2.Put in this:

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    “Default Engine”=”C:\\Windows\\system32\\vbscript.dll”

    3.Save and Exit
    4.Rename it: VBSRepair.reg – (required)
    5.Open the reg file. After that restart your pc.
    That’s it…

    Sorry for bad English :)