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Google Chrome – "Missing file error – Cannot find locale data files – Please reinstall"

The error you’re seeing is simple: Google Chrome can’t be loaded because it doesn’t have access to the files required for it to work.

While this can be caused by a number of potential issues, the core of the problem is that your chrome.exe application is missing or has the wrong name, preventing Chrome from being able to load.

To fix the problem, you need to make sure that you can recover the missing file or repair any of the damaged references it may have. There are several possible ways to do this, which I’ll detail in this article.

Causes

  • corrupt files
  • incompatible version
  • Duplicate files with incorrect names
  • Corrupted plugins, etc.

The main cause of the error is that chrome.exe cannot be accessed.

This will be caused by the file being renamed (likely due to a recent system restore) or the file being corrupted. In any case, there are two ways to solve it: rename the file or reinstall Chrome (which will change it automatically).

There are also other possible causes, such as Windows not having specific DLL files available, or your computer suffering from viruses, among other problems. The steps to problem solving are to work through the various potential solutions, ensuring that each potential problem is resolved.

That is how…

Step 1 – Rename Chrome.exe

The first step is to rename chrome.exe to make sure Windows can read it.

To do this, you need to find the following folder:

  • C:UsersAppDataLocalGoogleChromeApplications

Inside here, especially if you’ve done a recent system restore, you should find a reference to chrome.exe. If this file exists, there may be another one called new_chrome.exe.

If there is another Chrome file in the folder, you will need to delete it by selecting it and pressing Delete. This will send it to the recycle bin, where it can be restored if deleting it doesn’t fix the Chrome error.

After doing this, restart your PC and see if Chrome will work again. If not, continue to the next step.

Step 2 – Reinstall Chrome

The most reliable way to resolve this issue is to reinstall Chrome.

Not only does this ensure that Windows has all the correct settings in order, but it also replaces any damaged or corrupted Chrome files that may be causing potential errors.

To do this, you need to follow the steps given below:

  • Click “Start” > “Control Panel” > “Add or Remove Programs” (Windows 7)

  • Right-click “Start” > select “Apps & Features” (Windows 10)

From here, you’ll need to scroll through the list of apps until you find Google Chrome. After right-clicking on the icon, select “Uninstall”. This will remove the app, after which you need to restart your computer.

After restarting, you will be able to download a new version of Chrome using Microsoft’s default web browser (Internet Explorer or Edge), which will allow you to install the most up-to-date version of the application.

If, after this process, Chrome does not work, it suggests that you have a deeper problem with Windows. The solution for this could be to use a registry cleaner to repair any potentially corrupted or missing registry errors (unlikely), or to make sure Windows is running properly by updating it.

Step 3 – Windows Update

If the error persists, you should update your system.

To do this, you must follow these steps:

  • In Windows 7, please click “Start” > “Control Panel” > “System and Security” > “Windows Update” > “Check for updates”

  • In Windows 10, click the “Start” button, select the “Settings” cogwheel in the “charms” menu on the left, and then click “Update & Security”

  • On both systems, you need to click “Check for updates”

If the errors persist after following the steps above, you’ll want to see how to resolve any potential issues Windows may have with your core settings. To do this, you really need to get the opinion of an experienced expert, who will be in a much better position to give a one-on-one diagnosis of the system.

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