Fix: Validation Task Deadline

An error with the Validation Task Deadline is signaling that this particular scheduled backup task has become corrupted. Some users have been reporting problems with the ValidationTaskDeadline task in association with opening the Task Scheduler. Usually, they are prevented from opening Task Scheduler entirely while seeing one of the following three error messages:

  • Task ValidationTaskDeadline: The task image is corrupt or has been tampered with.
  • Task validation task: the task image is corrupt or has been tampered with.
  • Task image is corrupt or has been tampered with.

The error seems to occur solely on Windows 7 computers after a failed activation or failed upgrade to Windows 10. After doing some investigations on the issue, it turns out that the problem is caused by the Windows Activation Technologies folder. It seems like the ValidationTaskDeadline task is checking if the user is running a genuine copy of Windows 7. In other words, it runs the ValidationTaskDeadline in order to confirm if the Windows 7 copy is genuine, preparing the ground for a future upgrade to a newer Windows version.

Note: Keep in mind that the Windows Activation Technologies folder does not represent the ValidationTaskDeadline task alone – it’s a collection of activation and validation components, as well as some fairly aggressive anti-piracy features.

Although we were able to identify false positives, the Validation Task Deadline error is almost always caused by a pirated copy of Windows 7. But we did manage to identify some occurrences where users running on legitimate copies of Windows 7 got stuck with this error after the update validation process failed for various reasons.

If you’re currently struggling with this issue and you own a legitimate copy of Windows, we have a method that seemed to be successful in helping other users that were in a similar situation as you. Please follow the steps below in perfect order until you manage to resolve your issue.

Note: If you get this error on a pirated Windows copy, the steps below will not resolve your issue. In this case, the only way to remove the error and use Task Manager again is to go legit.

How to fix the ValidationTaskDeadline error

The most popular fix for this particular issue is to re-import the two validation tasks (those that are causing the problem). Start by following the steps below in order to extract ValidationTask and ValidationTaskDeadline, then re-import them into Task Scheduler:

  1. Go to C:\ Windows \System32 \ Tasks \ Microsoft \ Windows \ Windows Activation Technologies.
    Hit Yes if asked to provide the access permissions.
  2. Select both tasks in that folder and copy them somewhere else. We placed them on the Desktop. Next, hit Continue when asked to provide administrative permissions in order to be able to move the files.
  3. Once both tasks are safely saved in a different location, return to the Windows Activation Technologies folder and empty its contents.
  4. Next, open a Run window (Windows key + R), type “taskschd.msc” and hit Enter to open Task Scheduler. Since the tasks that have been causing issues are deleted, Task Scheduler should open just fine now.
  5. In Task Scheduler, use the left pane to navigate to Task Scheduler Library > Microsoft > Windows > Windows Activation Technologies.
  6. Once you open the Windows Activation Technologies folder, right-click anywhere on the middle pane and choose Import Task.
  7. Next, use the Open window to browse to where you previously saved the two tasks and import them back into Task Scheduler individually. When prompted with the Create Task window, simply click OK.
    Note: If you manage to re-import both files successfully, your problem should be resolved after you reboot your computer. In the event that you get the “A task or folder with this name already exists” error, continue with the steps below.
  8. Return to  C:\ Windows \System32 \ Tasks \ Microsoft \ Windows \ Windows Activation Technologies. You’ll probably find that the two dreadful tasks have magically re-appeared in the Windows Activation Technologies folder.
  9. Since the two files where automatically re-generated by Windows, the only way to prevent this from happening again is to rename them with the “.old” extension. Right-click on each file, choose Rename and add the “.old” extension at the end of each name.Note: The .old extension will serve as an indicator for your OS – telling it to ignore this file as a newer version has been created.
  10. Now return to Task Scheduler and re-import the two tasks as done in steps 6 and 7 to resolve your issue.

If you’re still having problems related to the Validation Task Deadline task, consider using a System Restore point to revert your system to a previous point (preferably before the activation process failed). If you don’t know how to do this, follow our in-depth article (here) about creating and using System Restore points.


Kevin Arrows

Kevin Arrows is a highly experienced and knowledgeable technology specialist with over a decade of industry experience. He holds a Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist (MCTS) certification and has a deep passion for staying up-to-date on the latest tech developments. Kevin has written extensively on a wide range of tech-related topics, showcasing his expertise and knowledge in areas such as software development, cybersecurity, and cloud computing. His contributions to the tech field have been widely recognized and respected by his peers, and he is highly regarded for his ability to explain complex technical concepts in a clear and concise manner.