How to Fix IPCONFIG.EXE Flashing and Popping up on Startup

IPCONFIG.exe is a system file that hardly appears during your normal use of your PC. This is because this file is not essential in order for your PC to run. However, it is sometimes needed for applications that need to set up network configurations of your device.

Several users have complained on windows forums that this application has become a nuisance with its frequent pop up. Most have reported a brief flash of a black command prompt screen. Some have had an actual window popping up with an error until they click “ok” or “cancel”, just to have the pop-up return. Either way, the frequency of the pop ups are too high and annoying.

This page will give you information on what IPCONFIG.exe is and its use on Windows. We will then delve into why the application pops up every time on your PC and how to solve the problem.

What is IPCONFIG.exe and what does it do?

The ipconfig.exe file is a software component of Microsoft Windows Operating System by Microsoft. In computing, IPCONFIG (internet protocol configuration) in Microsoft Windows is a console application that displays all current TCP/IP network configuration values and can modify Dynamic Host Configuration Protocol (DHCP) and Domain Name System (DNS) settings.

Microsoft’s Internet Protocol configuration utility has been incorporated into Windows since the release of Windows XP. Accessible through the command prompt, this utility allows you to display IP information, as well as release it, renew it, and other options. This utility replaced the previous winipcfg.exe file.

Several programs especially PC Games with networking or online games might make use of this configuration executable. Information about your connection is collected and even modified for networking game mode to function. That is why you might see a cmd screen flashing when your game loads.

Why IPCONFIG.exe keeps popping up.

Is IPCONFIG.exe pop-up a virus? If it is a normal file, why does it pop up so often? Here are some of the known reasons behind this annoying pop-up.

  1. Incomplete windows update or missing windows components and files

This is the most common reason why you get IPCONFIG.exe pop ups. Most of the people started getting this error after an update. While some updates might have completed, most of the users said that they shut down their computer before the download was completed.

In the event of an incomplete download, Windows will install only the files it already has. This means some components will be missing, and some of these may be associated with IPCONFIG.exe. When IPCONFIG runs, it is unable to complete its task, and keeps on retrying in order to flag the task as complete. This is why you see a black cmd screen with IPCONFIG.exe written at the top flashing every now and then.

If some windows components are missing (deleted, infected or corrupt), then the result is the same as above.

  1. Corrupt or bad registry

If your registry is corrupt or has been altered, then the IPCONFIG.exe might be a victim. EXE registry is a protocol that gives permission to executable files; dictate what they have permission to and how they access these components. So if IPCONFIG has been denied access to your network devices and configuration files, then it might be forced to keep on trying till it is successful. You might also get an error pop-up window with the IPCONFIG.exe title.

  1. Bad or outdated drivers

IPCONFIG.exe gets it network configuration data from network devices like WLAN, LAN and even your Bluetooth card. It can then alter these configurations and return them to your network cards. In case you have bad network drivers, your devices will keep returning erroneous data or no data at all. This will force IPCONFIG to keep on trying until it is successful.

  1. Virus attack or malware

If a virus gets embedded in your IPCONFIG.exe file, it might run the file indefinitely with the aim of collecting data on your IP configuration. Malware that is usually in form of shareware and freeware can also run the IPCONFIG executable frequently for the same purpose of collecting your IP configuration data. This kind of data is usually sent over the internet by these viruses and malware to their makers. This will leave you vulnerable to hacks.

Some viruses might imitate the name of IPCONFIG.exe as their title. They will throw pop-ups in order to get you to click on them in order to spread the virus or give them permissions to your system.

If your system has been infected, most antivirus programs will identify IPCONFIG.exe as malware – for instance Kaspersky identifies it as HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Generic, and McAfee identifies it as RDN/Generic.dx!d2r.

Solutions to Fix IPCONFIG popup

If your antivirus has scanned your system and not found any malware or virus and your drivers are up to date, then it probably means that you are missing some windows files or some files are corrupted. This could have been after an update or quarantine after a system scan or even a hard disk failure.

Method 1: Scan the system using Malwarebytes

Installing this antimalware software will find any viruses and malicious installations on your PC and fix them. Click (here) to view the guide on how to download, install and use Malwarebytes to clean your system from the malware triggering IPCONFIG.EXE popups.

Method 2: Repair Windows

Repairing windows will reinstall all windows files including IPCONFIG.exe. The good part of repairing is that you will not lose any of your personal data. Only windows files will be replaced.

Follow steps (here) to Repair Windows 10 and (here) to Repair Windows 7.


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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Expert Tip

How to Fix IPCONFIG.EXE Flashing and Popping up on Startup

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