NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue: 7 Solutions to Fix the Error

Are you trying to install a new NVIDIA graphics card driver only to be stopped by the persistent error “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue”? This error message is troublesome because it will continue to reappear until you solve the root issue. Don’t get too frustrated because this troubleshooting guide contains seven proven solutions to fix the error. Continue reading to learn how to solve this problem and complete the driver update for your GPU. 

Nvidia GeForce Experience

NVIDIA GeForce GPUs include a companion software called GeForce Experience. This software is intended to simplify a user’s experience with NVIDIA products. GeForce Experience makes it easy to apply updates for an NVIDIA graphics card and can be set to remind the user when a new version comes out. In addition, GeForce Experience can optimize game settings and even has an in-game overlay for video recording and streaming gameplay. 

Some users report recurring issues with GeForce Experience, and some consider it unnecessary, but the software is useful for less technical gamers. NVIDIA continues updating GeForce Experience to improve performance, reduce bugs, and add new features. 

What does the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error mean?

The “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error appears when users are trying to install new driver updates for their graphics card. The installer may prompt you to try the installation again, but the installation will continue to fail until the underlying cause is resolved. 

NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue error message

Below are different error message variations that also occur with GeForce Experience and in relation to this issue:

  • GeForce Game Ready Driver Installation Cannot Continue
  • GeForce Experience Driver Installation Cannot Continue
  • GeForce Installation Cannot Continue
GeForce Game Ready Driver installation cannot continue error message

Why does the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error happen?

Generally, the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error is due to a handful of issues, including:

  • Incompatible drivers
  • Corrupt drivers
  • Disabled graphics card
  • Background NVIDIA process running
  • Incorrect device ID for GPU
  • Antivirus interactions

Keep reading to learn how to fix the causes of the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error. 

Note: When installing drivers, you will need to use administrator privileges. Make sure you have administrator privileges for the device in question if you want to resolve the problem successfully. Additionally, when installing drivers, make sure all background programs are closed. Don’t try to run any software or other processes during installation. Ideally, the only software that should be open is GeForce Experience.

7 Solutions to the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error

Below are seven solutions that have proven to solve the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error. You’ll start with the simplest and quickest solutions before moving on to the more technical methods. Each solution contains step-by-step directions and screenshots to help you follow along.

1. Disable antivirus

Sometimes antivirus or antimalware software can interfere with legitimate applications in unexpected ways. To ensure that this type of software is not impacting your driver installation and triggering the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error, you should disable your antivirus software temporarily before trying any of the following solutions. Be sure to re-enable your antivirus or antimalware program when you have finished with this guide and have installed your driver. 

The process for disabling your antivirus or antimalware software will depend upon the specific software installed on your device. Search online for step-by-step instructions for your antivirus or antimalware software. 

2. Close all NVIDIA processes

It’s a good idea to check your Task Manager to see if you have any NVIDIA processes running in the background when trying to install the new driver. You definitely don’t want duplicates of the same process.

  1. Right-click on the Windows button and select Task Manager from the menu.
  2. Make sure you have the Processes tab selected. Then scroll through the process, looking for any that are identified as belonging to NVIDIA.
Close all NVIDIA processes
  1. You want to close every single NVIDIA process so that you have a fresh slate to open GeForce Experience and start your driver install. Right-click on each process and select End Task from the menu. 
End task
  1. Once all NVIDIA processes are closed, you can try to reinstall your graphics card driver using GeForce Experience. If the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error resurfaces, you can move on to the next solution. 

3. Enable NVIDIA graphics card

Next, it’s smart to make sure your NVIDIA graphics card is enabled. Most CPUs include integrated graphics hardware, the exception being CPU models that end in ‘i’. Integrated graphics are onboard graphics that share the memory with the CPU. Integrated graphics is generally enough for the average computer user, but if you intend to play recent AAA titles or want high performance, a dedicated graphics card is a must. To ensure you have your dedicated graphics card enabled, you need to navigate to Device Manager:

  1. Right-click on the Windows icon and select Device Manager from the menu.
Windows menu
  1. Once Device Manager opens, find and click on Display Adapters. The list will show all graphics cards recognized by your system.
Device manager display adapters
  1. Right-click on your dedicated graphics card, and if the dropdown menu gives the option to Enable Device, your graphics card has somehow been disabled. Please select this option and restart your computer. If the dropdown menu only gives you the option to Disable Device, then it’s enabled already, and you can continue to the next method.
Enable your GPU to fix the NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue error

4. Update NVIDIA graphics card driver within Device Manager

Most drivers can easily be updated, uninstalled, installed, or rolled back using Windows Device Manager. Windows will automatically search for any available driver updates. 

  1. Right-click on the Windows icon and select Device Manager from the menu.
  2. Once Device Manager opens, find and click on Display Adapters. Your graphics cards that are recognized by the system will be shown here.
  3. Right-click on your graphics card and select Update Driver from the drop-down menu.
Install NVIDIA driver from Device Manager
  1. In the new window, under “How do you want to search for drivers?” select “Search automatically for updated driver software.” Windows will search your device and the internet for any updated driver software.
Let Windows search for the latest NVIDIA driver update
  1. If this process finds an update, please install the update. Then restart your system.
  2. If no updated drivers are found, proceed to the next method.

5. Manually apply NVIDIA graphics card driver update

The next solution involves manually updating the NVIDIA GPU driver for your system. NVIDIAs website hosts all drivers for all existing NVIDIA graphics cards. You can search by your GPU model and download the most up-to-date driver available. Sometimes GeForce Experience is not working properly and has outdated driver information. 

  1. Visit NVIDIA’s website. Select Products from the menu at the top of the page. In the dropdown menu, find GPUs and then click on GeForce.
NVIDIA products
  1. Once you have been redirected to the GeForce graphics card page, select Drivers from the menu.
  2. Now you are on the GeForce drivers webpage. Scroll down until you see Manual Driver Search. You need to enter all pertinent information for your specific graphics card. If you are unsure about this information, you can find your GPU model within Device Manager: 
    1. Click the Windows icon and enter Device Manager into the search bar. 
    2. Open the Device Manager app. 
    3. Find and double-click on Display Adapters
    4. The device listed there is your graphics card. For example, GeForce RTX 3080 means you will fill out the Manual Driver Search as follows:
      Product type: GeForce
      Product series: GeForce RTX 30 Series
      Product: GeForce RTX 3080

      Note: For Download Type, you can choose either option. GameReady Driver is tailored more for gamers, while the Studio Driver option is for content creators and digital designers. 
  3. Once you’ve entered all information into the form, click Start Search. Scroll down to see the available drivers for that GPU model. 

    Note: WHQL means that the driver has been tested and passed Windows Hardware Quality Labs testing.
NVIDIA driver search results
  1. Find the most recent driver update and click Get Download. When prompted, click Save File.
  2. Once the download is complete, navigate to the folder where the driver executable was saved and double-click to open.
  3. Follow the installer prompts until the GPU driver has been installed. If you encounter the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error again, continue to the next solution.

If you need more assistance with applying the driver update, please read our dedicated article on how to update NVIDIA graphics drivers.

6. Rename the NVIDIA Corporation folder

If the solutions above have failed, some users have reported success with renaming their NVIDIA Corporation folder located in Program Files. You don’t need to delete, backup, or move the folder at all. Instead, when you rename the folder and then try to download a new driver using GeForce Experience, the software will look for the NVIDIA Corporation folder. When it can’t locate a folder with that name, it will create a completely new NVIDIA Corporation folder. This method helps if there are any corrupt or missing files within the NVIDIA Corporation folder, contributing to the “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error:

  1. Navigate to your PC’s local disk, usually C, as this is where your operating system and system files are installed. Double-click to open.
System drive C
  1. Scroll down until your find the Program Files (x86) folder and double-click to open it.
  1. Now, locate NVIDIA Corporation from the list. Right-click and select Rename. You can rename the folder anything, but I’d suggest a name that is still identifying as the old NVIDIA Corporation folder. 
  2. Re-open GeForce Experience and try to reinstall the drivers. If successful, you’ll notice that a new NVIDIA Corporation folder has been created.

7. Perform a clean driver install

NVIDIA’s Graphics Driver installer provides a “Clean Install” option. This option restores all NVIDIA settings to the default and removes any preexisting drivers. If you have corrupt settings, profiles, or drivers that are preventing a new driver version from being installed, this can fix your problem. To perform a clean driver install:

  1. Repeat steps 1-6 from solution #5. 
  2. Follow the installer prompts until you are on the Installation options window. 
Perform a clean driver install to fix the NVIDIA Installer cannot continue error
  1. You have two installation options: Express (Recommended) is what you’ve likely been using up to this point. Instead, select Custom (Advanced). Click Next.
  2. Now, you are on the Custom installation options window. Leave all driver components that are already selected alone. Underneath these selections, you’ll find an option, Perform a clean installation. Check this box. Click Next.
  3. Continue following all prompts until the installation is complete. Restart your computer.

NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue error solved

The “NVIDIA Installer Cannot Continue” error can cause major stress. Graphics cards are an expensive investment, and you want to get the best performance and usage out of this hardware. Thankfully this guide can help you navigate seven solutions for fixing this error message. NVIDIA’s GeForce Experience is a great software that NVIDIA fans really enjoy, but sometimes issues arise. 

To troubleshoot this issue, make sure your antivirus software is disabled, no NVIDIA processes are running in the background, and your graphics card is properly enabled. If all that looks good, you’ll learn how to check for driver updates using Windows Device Manager and how to manually install NVIDIA drivers found on NVIDIA’s website. You can rename the NVIDIA Corporation folder or try a clean install using GeForce. Other users have reported great success using these methods, and you should have your driver installed in no time.

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