How to Fix HTTP Port 80 in Use (XAMPP) on Windows 10

Your XAMPP HTTP server won’t start because of the port 80 in use?

Do you want to fix it without changing the HTTP port?

This is the ultimate fix tutorial.

In this tutorial you will discover the different causes of Apache not starting and why – sometimes – the system (kernel) can itself reserve port 80 in services such as World Wide Web Publishing and Windows Activation Process.

If you are using Vmware Workstation and you have the error 443 in use, then uninstall Vmware and things will work again.

Let’s go!

How does the Error Look Like?

The error is long and it ends with: Error: Apache shutdown unexpectedly.

In this tutorial we will first uncover the cause of the problem then we will fix it step by step.

If you were able to fix the problem please leave a comment below to thank me. Thanks.

1. Discover the Source of the Port 80 in Use Error

Analyzing the Processes Using the Port 80

Open a new Command Prompt as administrator from the Start menu and type in this command:

netstat -aon | findstr :80

You will see many lines of TCP and sometimes UDP protocols, copy the last number, here it’s 4.

Knowing the Process Responsible for Locking the Port 80

Use this command to know the name of the process responsible for this issue:

tasklist /fi "pid eq 4"

As you can see in the screenshot below, it’s the system that is blocking the port. Let’s deal with it!

2. Disable Services Using the HTTP Port 80

Open Run using the Windows+R keyboard shortcut, type in services.msc and hit Enter.

Stop the following services:

  • Windows Process Activation Service (WAS)
  • World Wide Web Publishing Service (W3SVC)
  • BranchCache (PeerDistSvc)

And double-click on them and set their “Startup type” as “Disabled“.

Try to start your XAMPP now, if it works leave a comment. If not continue reading.

Uninstall the Services Blocking the Port 80

Open your Start menu and search and open the Control Panel.

Click on “Programs and Features“.

Click on “Turn Windows features on or off“.

Uncheck the following entries:

  • Internet Information Services
  • Internet Information Services Hostable Web Core
  • Windows Process Activation Service

Click “OK“.

Wait for a couple of seconds…

Click “Don’t restart” and continue reading.

3. Disable the Hidden HTTP.SYS Service

Open the Command Prompt (CMD) as administrator.

Type in the following command and hit Enter:

net stop http /y

You will notice a world of services that have been stopped.

To disable the HTTP service run this command:

sc config http start= disabled

4. XAMPP is Working Again!

Restart your computer if necessary, your XAMPP should be working again!

If yes, leave a comment below!

Thank you for reading, if you like this tutorial please share it everywhere!

If you have a question don’t hesitate to ask it in the comments below.

The author:

Soufiane is a young computer scientist and specialist in web design, knows a lot of things in the computer world. This enthusiast enjoys helping people innovate and learn more about the IT world...

  • Annie says:

    It worked with the first step..although branchcache must be hidden, it still got xampp going. Thanks so much. :D

  • Raymond Owusu says:

    everything works the first step works


  • Marc says:


    es hat super funktioniert, vielen Dank für Ihr Tutorial!

  • says:

    it’s works for me, Thanks, :love:

  • Arjana says:

    I try this but … when I need to restart apache when I start my new project I get the same problem that I have…. :( “Error: Apache shutdown unexpectedly”

  • Ehtizaz Ahmad Khan says:

    it worked. thanks.

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