How to fix “Kernel-mode hardware-enforced stack protection off” security issue in Windows 11

In short.
To fix “kernel-mode hardware-enforced stack protection turned off” security issue in Windows 11, try to modify registry, enable virtualization using UEFI settings, uninstall conflicting software like anti-cheat program or reset your PC.

If you have recently encountered the “kernel-mode hardware-enforced stack protection off” issue on your Windows 11 computer, you are not alone. Several users have reported experiencing the same issue, and some have even received a ‘Review driver incompatibility’ error when trying to enable the option. Rest assured, there are solutions available to deal with this problem, even for those who are new to computer troubleshooting.

Before diving into the steps to solve this problem, it is necessary to understand what causes it. This information will help you to take preventive measures and avoid the problem in future.

What is “kernel-mode hardware-enforced stack protection off” error?

Hardware-enforced stack protection is a security feature available in modern operating systems such as Windows 11. This feature uses CPU hardware to protect an application’s or game’s code, primarily by protecting the system’s memory stack where the code is stored during execution. It is designed to work in conjunction with other security features such as Local Security Authority Security (LSA).

On newer computers, this protection feature is hardware-based and may not be compatible with some older applications or drivers, such as some anti-cheat software or keyboard/mouse drivers.

Unfortunately, the Windows Security app is currently not that effective at detecting incompatible drivers, making it difficult for users to troubleshoot the issue. Microsoft is working on improving the detection and flagging of incompatible drivers.

Here are some simple and effective ways to solve “Kernel-mode hardware-enforced stack protection is off” issue on your Windows 11 PC.

1. Modify the Registry

First, go to the Start menu and type registry to search. Then, from the search results, click on the ‘Registry Editor’ tile.

After that, type or copy+paste the below address in the address bar and press Enter to navigate to the directory.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management

Now, double-click on the ‘FeatureSettingsOverride’ file from the right part to open its properties.

If no such DWORD file exists, right-click on a blank space and hover over the ‘New’ option. Then, click on the ‘DWORD’ option to proceed further.

Finally, rename the file to ‘FeatureSettingsOverride’. Then, double click on it.

On the Properties window, overwrite the ‘Value’ to ‘9’ and click on the ‘Ok’ button to save the changes.

Once done, restart your PC and check if the problem is resolved.

2. Enable Virtualization Using UEFI Settings

First, go to the Start menu and click on the ‘Settings’ app tile. Alternatively, press the Windows+I keys on your keyboard simultaneously to open the app.

After that, make sure you have selected the ‘System’ tab from the left sidebar.

Then, click on the ‘Recovery’ option from the right side of the window.

Next, click on the ‘Restart now’ button to proceed. This will bring up a prompt on your screen.

Afterward, click on the ‘Restart Now’ button to restart your PC immediately.

After the PC restarts, click on the ‘Troubleshooter’ tile.

After that, click on the ‘Advanced options’ tile to continue.

Next, click on the ‘UEFI Firmware Settings’ tile to proceed, your PC may restart.

Then, on the BIOS Setup menu, use the arrow keys to highlight the ‘BIOS Setup’ tile and press ‘Spacebar/Enter’ to continue.

After that, click on the ‘Configuration’ tab from the left sidebar. Then, click on the checkbox before the ‘Virtualization Technology’ option.

Finally, click on the ‘Save’ button or press the ‘F10’ key on your keyboard to save and exit the screen.

3. Uninstall conflicting software

As mentioned earlier in this guide, there could be anti-cheat software that could also be the culprit of the problem. You just need to uninstall them (sometimes you’ll also need to uninstall the games that came with them), and that will likely fix the problem.

Some games known to cause this problem are:

  1. matters
  2. Destiny 2
  3. phantasy star online 2

If you have any of these games installed on your computer, we recommend uninstalling them and checking if they are indeed the cause of the problem. If so, then you can wait for the next update and let the game developers know about the issue using their support email address, or even an official forum thread.

4. Reset Your PC

Resetting your PC will remove all programs you have installed on your computer. However, no personal files and folders will be deleted. All Windows settings and preferences will also be returned to factory settings. If nothing else works, this is your best bet.

First, go to the Start menu and click on the ‘Settings’ tile.

After that, from the Settings window, make sure you have selected the ‘System’ tab present on the left sidebar.

Next, from the right part of the window, scroll down to find and click on the ‘Recovery’ tile to proceed.

Then, on the ‘Recovery’ settings screen, locate the ‘Reset this PC’ tile and click the ‘Reset PC’ button on the far right edge of the tile to proceed. This will open a separate window on your screen.

Now, from the separately opened window, click on the ‘Keep My Files’ tile to proceed. If you want to delete all your personal files as well while resetting, click on the ‘Delete everything’ option.

On the next screen, you will need to choose a method to reinstall the operating system on your machine. As there may be an issue with the copy that is already on your system, it is recommended that you click on the ‘Cloud Download’ option.

Comment: ‘Cloud Download’ will require an active internet connection and will consume over 4 GB of data.

After that, Windows will list the settings you selected. If you want to change any of these, click on the ‘Change Settings’ option to continue.

If you choose to change the setting, on the next screen, select ‘Restore pre-installed apps?’ Option to bring it to ‘No’ position. You can see the ‘Download Windows?’ You can also switch from Clodu download to local install by clicking the toggle switch under . Option. After adjusting to your liking, click on the ‘Confirm’ button to proceed.

After that, click on the ‘Next’ button from the main window to continue.

If your PC was recently updated, you will receive a message on the screen that you will not be able to roll back after resetting the PC. To continue, click on the ‘Next’ button.

After that, Windows will list all the effects that resetting your PC has on your system. Read them carefully and click on ‘Reset’ to start the resetting process.

That’s all, people. If you are facing the error on your Windows 11 computer then you can use the above mentioned methods to fix it.

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