Performance counter registry hive consistency check when installing SQL Server on Windows

Like I mentioned last week, I’ll be covering different SQL Server installation related problems and different troubleshooting tips to resolve the problem. Last week we discussed how to manage SQL Server stopped working error and went through different steps to fix it. So this week I’m discussing about another common error that you get while troubleshooting SQL Server 2008 R2 / 2012, and that is about Performance counter registry hive consistency check error. Let’s discuss a little background of this error message.

Performance counter registry hive consistency check failed

Basicallywhen we try to install SQL, it will run some rules to check if your system meets all the requirement to run the SQL Server 2008 successfully. During that process as you can see in the screenshot the installation will fail at this point. You cannot proceed further.

Performance counter registry hive consistency check

You do not need the Performance counter in all cases, in some you can just skip it. During the installation, a set of performance counters will be used to monitor the performance of the data flow engine.

According to TechNet the best example is as of the “Buffers spooled” This counter is to determine whether data buffers are being written to disk temporarily while a package is running. But like I said some application that runs with SQL doesn’t really need these. It’s mostly used for stand alone SQL on a data server which requires a lot of monitoring. So if you want to just skip the Performance counter  consistency check you can start the SQL Server install with the following switch value.

C:\Downloads\setup.exe /ACTION=install /SKIPRULES=PerfMonCounterNotCorruptedCheck

Replace the location with where you have the installation files.

Rebuild the Performance Counter

Once you start the setup with this switch value it should skip that step and continue with the installation. So this is one way to get around this error message. The other way which is also mentioned in the Microsoft KB is to Rebuild the Performance Counter.

  • Click on Start and type in CMD
  • Right click and click on Run as administrator
  • Then type in lodctr /R:PerfStringBackup.INI and press Enter
  • Now reboot the system and attempt to install SQL Server again.

I have seen this working onolder version of Windows like XP and Server 2003but I hardly seen this working on new generation operating system. Still it’s worth a try. There is a Microsoft way of manually rebuilding the Performance Counter, please refer the KB300956.

Then there are situation where the desired registry key itself is missing. Such cases we have to find what key is missing then manually create it. The best and easiest way. There is a small application I found someone posted in MSDN forums that will tell you which key we need to create. You can download it from here – this console application is developed by  Rafael Candido I think so. Now before we proceed further we need to create a backup of your registry.

Once you have the key we need to go toregistry and create the new key.

  • Click on Start and type in Regedit
  • Right click and click on Run as administrator
  • Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Perflib
  • Then Right click on Perflib and click on new key
  • Then type on the value you got when you ran the console application


  • Then you may have other keys under Perflib like 009 etc.
  • You need to copy those info and put it under the newly created key

The best way to do this is just export the key alone (In my case 009) then save it to the Desktop as PCFix.reg. Right click on the PCFix.reg and click on Edit. Then change 009 with the value you got on the console. Then save it and close it. Just double click on the key to take effect. Once you have done just restart the computer to take effect.

To conclude one of these steps should be able to resolve the problem that you are facing with Performance counter registry hive consistency check when installing SQL Server.

I hope you find this article helpful.

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Shyam aka “Captain Jack” is a Microsoft MVP alumnus and a Windows Enthusiast with an interest in Advanced Windows troubleshooting. Suggestions made and opinions expressed by him here are his personal one's and not of his current employers. He blogs at