Fix: Alienware Command Center not Working

Alienware Command Center may not work if you are using an outdated version of Windows or system drivers. Moreover, the corrupt installation of the Command Center or Windows may also cause the error under discussion.

The issue arises when the affected user launches the Alienware Command Center, but the application fails to launch or launches with a spinning circle in it but does not load. For some of the users, the application launched, but some of its components/plugins could not be accessed. The issue is reported on nearly all Alienware systems, usually after an OS or Command Center update. Following are the type of messages received by the user:

No supported AlienFX devices were detected.

System.Management.ManagementException: Not found

System.NullReferenceException:

Could not load file or assembly 'Alienlabs.UpgradeService, Version=1.0.49.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=bebb3c8816410241' or one of its dependencies. This assembly is built by a runtime newer than the currently loaded runtime and cannot be loaded.

Object reference not set to an instance of an object.

System.TypeInitializationException: The type initializer for AlienLabs.ThermalControls.Controller.Classes.ThermalControlsTaskbarIcon' threw an exception. --> System.Null.ReferenceException: Object reference not set to an instance of an object.
Alienware Command Center Not Working

Before proceeding with the troubleshooting process to fix Alienware Command Center, make sure your system supports the Alienware Command Center. Moreover, it will be a good idea to power off your system and open your system’s cover. Now reseat all the hardware connections, especially your graphics card. Furthermore, if the command center asks to install/update applications or drivers, let it install/update.

Additionally, make sure your antivirus is not interfering in the operation of the Command Center. Keep in mind there can be two programs with the same name as Command Center, one for peripherals, and the other for controlling lights, so make sure you are using the right application. Also, delete any themes from the AlienFX or similar locations until the issue is resolved. Moreover, try to right-click in the spinning circle of the Command Center as some users were able to solve the issue this way. Last but not least, update your Windows & system drivers, especially the touchpad driver and Alienware gaming peripheral driver, to the latest build after completely draining the power of your system.

Solution 1: Change the Start Up Type of AWCCService to Automatic

The Command Center might stop working if its service (i.e., AWCC.Service) is not configured to startup automatically, leading to delay responses from the Command Center (if any). In this case, setting the start-up type of AWCCService to Automatic may solve the problem.

  1. Exit the Alienware Command Center (if possible) and right-click on the Taskbar of your system, and in the resulting menu, click on Task Manager.
    Open Task Manager
  2. In the processes tab, make sure no Command Center process (you might see Alienware Command Center and AWCCService processes) is running by right-clicking it and then clicking on End Task.
  3. Then navigate to the Services tab and near the bottom of the window, click on Open Services.
    Open Services
  4. Now, in the Services window, right-click on AWCCService, and in the menu, click on Properties.
    Right Click AWCCService
  5. Then, open the drop-down of the Start-Up type and change it to Automatic.
    Change Start Up Type of AWCCService to Automatic
  6. Now, click on the Apply and OK button and then restart your system.
  7. Upon restart, check if your system is clear of the error.

Solution 2: Remove / Disable 3rd Party Applications

In a Windows environment, applications coexist and share system resources. You may encounter the error under discussion if any of 3rd party applications interfere in the operation of the Alienware Command Center. In this context, removing or disabling 3rd party applications may solve the problem.

  1. Right-click on the Windows button, and in the resulting menu, select Apps & Features.
    Open Apps & Features
  2. Now expand MSI Afterburner and then click on the Uninstall button. If you do not want to uninstall, then clean boot your system and make sure none of the problematic applications load at the startup.
    Uninstalling MSI Afterburner and Rivatuner
  3. Then confirm to uninstall and follow the prompts on your screen to uninstall MST Afterburner.
  4. Now follow the same procedure to uninstall all the problematic applications (RivaTuner is also known to create the issue, or you can create a profile in Riva Tuner for the Command Center) and then check if the issue is resolved.

Solution 3: Repair the .NET Installation

The Alienware Command Center may not work if the .NET installation of your system is corrupt. It makes use of this framework in its internal operations. In this context, repairing the .NET installation of your system may solve the problem.

  1. Launch a browser and download the .NET framework repairing tool.
    Download Microsoft .Net Repair Tool
  2. Now, launch the downloaded file with administrative privileges and follow the prompts on your screen to repair the .net framework.
  3. Then check if the Command Center is working fine.

The Alienware Command Center might not work if its installation itself is corrupt. This can occur if the installation was hindered or the installation files were moved from the original directory. In this case, using the Windows built-in functionality to repair the Alienware Command Center’s installation may solve the problem.

  1. Right-click on the Windows button, and in the displayed menu, click on Settings.
    Open Windows Settings
  2. Then, select Apps and expand Alienware Command Center.
    Uninstall the Alienware Command Center
  3. Now click on Uninstall and then select the Repair option.
    Repair the Alienware Command Center Installation
  4. After repairing the installation, check if Alienware Command Center is clear of the error.
  5. If not, try to use the built-in administrator account to repair the Alienware Command Center installation by following steps 1 to 4.

Solution 5: Reinstall the Alienware Command Center

The Alienware Command Center may not work if its installation itself is corrupt, and none of the solutions discussed above could fix the issue. In this context, reinstalling the Alienware Command Center may solve the problem.

  1. Exit the Alienware Command Center and make sure no process related to it runs in the Task Manager of your system (as discussed in solution 1).
  2. Then download/install the latest version of Alienware Command Center over the current installation (without uninstalling it) and check if the issue is resolved.
  3. If not, click in the Windows Search bar and type Control Panel. Then (in the results) select Control Panel.
    Search and open Control Panel
  4. Then click on Uninstall a Program (under Programs).
    Navigating to Uninstall a Program
  5. Now, in the list of installed applications, select Alienware Command Center and click Uninstall.
    Uninstall the Alienware Command Center
  6. Then follow the prompts on your screen to uninstall the application.
  7. Now, repeat the same process to uninstall the OC Controls application and .NET Framework (you may have to use Turn Windows Feature on or off option) versions (3.5, 4.0, and 4.5). Also, make sure there is no Alienware application is installed in the Microsoft Store. Moreover, it will be a good idea to remove any of the Microsoft Visual C++ versions.
    Uninstall Microsoft Visual C++ from Your System
  8. Then, restart your system, and upon restart, download and install .Net Framework 3.5 and 4.5.
  9. Now, make sure there is no pending Windows update except hardware driver updates, and then restart your system.
  10. Then launch the File Explorer of your system and navigate to the following path:
    %appdata% as a Run command
  11. Now delete the Alienware folder there (if any).
  12. Then, navigate to the following path:
    %programdata%
    Open %programdata%
  13. Now, delete any Alienware Folder there (if any).
  14. Then navigate to the following path:
    C:\Program Files\Alienware\
    
    Or
    
    C:\Program Files (x86)
  15. Delete the Command Center folder.
  16. Now, navigate to the Documents folder and delete the following folders:
    AlienFX
    
    Alienware TactX
    Delete AlienFX and Alienware TactX Folders
  17. Now, delete your system’s temp files and then open the Run command by pressing Windows + R keys and type Reg Edit.
  18. Then, in the results shown, select Reg Edit (right-click and then click on Run as administrator) and backup Registry of your system.
    Open Registry Editor as Administrator
  19. Now navigate to the following path:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Alienware
  20. Delete the following folders:
    AlienFXMediaPlugin
    
    Alienware AlienFX
    
    CCPlugins
    
    Command Center
  21. Now, navigate to the following path:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\WOW6432Node\Alienware
    Delete Alienware Folder from Registry
  22. Then delete the following folders:
    AlienFXMediaPlugin
    
    Alienware AlienFX
    
    Command Center
  23. Now restart your system, and upon restart, download and install (use custom install) Alienware Command Center (for your particular system’s model) with administrative privileges (if it asks for any missing components, follow the prompts to install the components) and check if the issue is resolved.
  24. If not, then try to repair the Command Center’s installation, as discussed in solution 4, and check if the Command Center is working fine.
  25. If it still doesn’t work, repeat the same process through the built-in administrator account (it will be better to disable UAC) of your system (you may have to enable the built-in administrator account) and then check if the issue is resolved.
    Use the Built-in Administrator Account of Your System
  26. If the issue persists, then try to use a 3rd party uninstaller/registry cleaner (proceed at your own risk as these applications may harm your system and data) to clear out any remnants of the installation and then reinstall to check if the application is operating fine.
  27. If not, uninstall the Command Center through the built-in administrator account and then reinstall it using the Microsoft Store (you may have to install 5 to 6 applications) to check if the issue is resolved.

Solution 6: Restore Your System to an Earlier Date

You may encounter the error at hand if any of the recent OS updates or installation of 3rd party applications have broken the operation of Alienware Command Center and reinstalling the application did not solve the problem. In this case, restoring your system to an earlier date when things worked fine may solve the issue.

  1. Restore your system to an earlier date when the Command Center was operating normally.
    System Restore
  2. Then check if Alienware Command Center is working fine.

Solution 7: Reset Your System to the Factory Defaults or Perform a Clean Install of its Windows

If none of the solutions were able to fix the issue, then most probably, the issue resulted from a corrupt installation of Windows of your system. In this case, resetting your system to the factory defaults or performing a clean install of Windows may solve the problem (but do not forget to back up the data/information essential for you).

  1. Reset your system to the factory defaults and then check if the issue is resolved.
    Resetting with Keep My Files Settings
  2. If not, then perform a clean install of the Windows and check if the issue is resolved.
  3. If not, use the built-in administrator account of your system to uninstall Alienware Command Center (as discussed in solution 6) and restart your system.
  4. Upon restart, reinstall the application using the same account, and hopefully, the command center issue is resolved.

If the issue persists even after the Windows reinstall, then you may have to revert to an older version of Windows or the Alienware Command Center (you may have to stop automatic updates) or contact Dell support for any hardware troubleshooting.

(Advanced Users) Update the BIOS of Your System to the Latest Build

The BIOS of your system is updated regularly to pace with the latest technological advancements. The Alienware Command Center may fail to operate if your system’s BIOS is not updated to the latest build that may lead to compatibility issues between the system modules. In this scenario, updating the BIOS of your system to the latest build may solve the problem.

Warning: Proceed at your own risk as updating the BIOS of your system requires a certain level of experience, and if done wrong, you may brick your system and cause a non-recoverable loss to your system/data.

Before updating, it will be a good idea to reset your BIOS to the factory defaults and then check if any of the customized BIOS settings was the reason for the issue. If not, update your system’s BIOS by following the instructions specific to your make and model.

After updating the BIOS of your system and then check if the Command Center is operating fine.

Kevin Arrows
Kevin is a dynamic and self-motivated information technology professional, with a Thorough knowledge of all facets pertaining to network infrastructure design, implementation and administration. Superior record of delivering simultaneous large-scale mission critical projects on time and under budget.

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Fix: Alienware Command Center not Working

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