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Step By Step Guide To Fix QuickBooks Error 15271

QuickBooks Error 15271

What is QuickBooks Error 15271?

QuickBooks Error 15271 typically appears with one of the following messages:

  • “Error 15271: The payroll update was not completed successfully. A file cannot be validated.”
  • “Error 15271: The update was not completed successfully. A file cannot be validated.”

This error mainly occurs during the update of payroll or QuickBooks Desktop software when the system fails to validate a particular file. It indicates issues with file validation, which might be due to improper software installation, outdated software components, or interference from background applications.

Causes of QuickBooks Error 15271

Identifying the root causes of QuickBooks Error 15271 is essential for effective troubleshooting. Here are the primary culprits:

  1. Incomplete Installation: If QuickBooks installation is incomplete or damaged, this error may be triggered.
  2. Windows Registry Corruption: Changes in the software might corrupt the Windows registry, leading to this error.
  3. Outdated Software: Not keeping QuickBooks updated is a frequent cause of many errors, including 15271.
  4. User Account Control (UAC): Sometimes, Windows’s UAC can interfere with the update process, particularly if it restricts the software’s ability to modify certain files.
  5. Background Processes: Certain applications running in the background can conflict with QuickBooks processes, resulting in errors.
  6. Damaged Files: Corrupted or damaged QuickBooks files can also lead to error 15271.

Understanding these triggers helps in applying the correct solution strategy to resolve the issue efficiently.

Step By Step Guide To Fix QuickBooks Error 15271

Follow these detailed steps to resolve Error 15271 and get your QuickBooks running smoothly again:

Step 1: Disable User Account Control (UAC)

Disabling UAC can help prevent it from interfering with QuickBooks operations:

  1. Go to the Start menu, type Control Panel, and press Enter.
  2. Click on User Accounts and then Change User Account Control settings.
  3. Slide the slider to Never Notify and click OK.
  4. Restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

Step 2: Update QuickBooks Desktop

Ensure that you have the latest version of QuickBooks Desktop:

  1. Open QuickBooks Desktop.
  2. Go to Help > Update QuickBooks Desktop.
  3. Click on the Update Now tab.
  4. Check Reset Update and then click Get Updates.
  5. Once the download completes, restart QuickBooks and accept the option to install the new release.

Step 3: Clean Install QuickBooks

If updating doesn’t work, a clean install might be necessary:

  1. Download and install the QuickBooks Clean Install Tool from the Intuit website.
  2. Uninstall the QuickBooks application.
  3. Run the Clean Install Tool to remove the old QuickBooks installation folders.
  4. Reinstall QuickBooks Desktop.

Step 4: Repair QuickBooks Installation

Repairing the existing QuickBooks installation can fix underlying issues:

  1. Backup your QuickBooks data.
  2. Go to the Control Panel and select Programs and Features.
  3. Find QuickBooks in the list of programs, select it, and then click Repair.
  4. Follow the prompts and let the repair process complete.
  5. Restart your computer after the repair.

Step 5: Run QuickBooks File Doctor

QuickBooks File Doctor can repair damaged files and resolve the error:

  1. Download and install QuickBooks Tool Hub.
  2. Run the QuickBooks File Doctor from the Tool Hub.
  3. Select your company file from the drop-down or browse and select manually.
  4. Click Check your file and then Continue.
  5. Enter your QuickBooks admin password and click Next.


Encountering QuickBooks Error 15271 can be frustrating, but with the right steps, you can resolve it and prevent future occurrences. Regular updates, periodic backups, and minimizing interference from other applications can keep your QuickBooks environment healthy. Should the error persist, reaching out to QuickBooks support or a professional advisor is recommended to ensure your business operations run smoothly without further disruptions.

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