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How to Fix QuickBooks Error 15271? (Maintenance Releases & Update Error)

QuickBooks Error 15271

QuickBooks error 15271 encounters when you are trying to update QuickBooks payroll. This error is caused when the installation is incomplete or the file is invalidated. The solutions to perform are to update QuickBooks, turn off the UAC, delete junk documents from the system, and in the end still facing issues then perform a QuickBooks clean install.

QuickBooks Error 15271 occurs during payroll update or software update. You may receive two different messages depending on the underlying cause. The best way to fix this error is to turn off User Account Control (UAC) settings in Windows so that QuickBooks can easily download the update and install it without interference from any other service or program. User account control settings can be activated once again after you’ve updated the software.

Once you’ve turned off user account control, you can also try to start your system in selective startup mode to eliminate any program that may interrupt the update process. Some security programs can also cause QuickBooks Error 15271, so you need to turn off any such programs that may be stopping the download from starting in the first place.

In this post, you’ll learn how to fix QuickBooks Error 15271.

About QuickBooks Error 15271

Error Code:Error 15271Developer:Intuit Inc.
Error Description:Error 15271: The payroll update was not completed successfully. A file cannot be validated.Software:QuickBooks
Symptoms:Unable to approve a record, Windows run very slowlyApplies to:Windows 10, and Windows 11
Cause:Incomplete installation of QuickBooks Pro software or corrupt download, Due to an invalidated file the payroll update is not successfulSolution:Update QuickBooks Service, modify The System Registry In Your Computer

Intuit releases payroll updates to enhance the existing features and new features that will help in the smooth running of the business. But there are scenarios when the QuickBooks payroll update/upgrade remains incomplete due to some reason and an error occurs.

  • Error 15271: The payroll update remains incomplete. A file cannot be validated.
  • Error 15271: The update fails to complete successfully. A file cannot be validated.

QuickBooks Payroll Update Error 15271 indicates that the payroll update was not completed because a file cannot be validated. It signifies when the user tries to update the respective payroll subscription or QuickBooks Desktop the following error messages crop up: The major error occurs when a file cannot be validated.

Error Scenarios

  • Incomplete installation of QuickBooks Pro software or corrupt download
  • Due to an invalidated file, the payroll update is not successful
  • Error crops up due to maintenance releases whenever you attempt to update QuickBooks
  • While updating the QuickBooks versions and encountered the error code 15271

What are the major indications of QuickBooks error 15271?

  • Unable to justify a document with wrong or incorrect payroll update
  • Unable to approve a record
  • Windows run very slowly
  • Delay response to mouse or keyboard 
  • System freezes sometimes
  • Crashes the current windows

Things need to be considered before fixing the issue

Before proceeding with a troubleshooting process, it is highly recommended to take a backup of the company file.

Here are the steps:

  • Firstly, open your QuickBooks Desktop
  • Locate file option
  • Hit on the backup company
  • After this click on Create a Local backup
  • Now read and follow the on-screen instructions to make a backup of the company file

QuickBooks Payroll Tax Table Out Of Date

How to Fix QuickBooks Payroll Update Error 15271

Solution One: Manually Update Quickbooks

You can manually update QuickBooks to fix this error code.

For that, you need to choose the option you need below:

  • QuickBooks 2014 or 2015
  • QuickBooks 2013

At times the error can also be resolved by turning off the UAC (User Account Control) in Windows and then update the payroll software once again.

Follow the steps listed below to turn off the UAC in your Windows:

1. For Windows Vista Users:

  • Go to Windows
  • Choose Control Panel
  • Type UAC in the search box
  • Click the option Turn User Account Control, ON or OFF
  • Click to clear the UAC and turn off the UAC
  • Click OK
  • Restart your system

2. For Windows 7, 8, & 10:

  • Move to the Control Panel
  • Go to the search box, enter UAC
  • Click on Change UAC settings
  • Turn off UAC -> click ok
  • When prompted admin password -> enter the password and provide confirmation
  • Reboot your computer
  • In case you want to turn on the UAC, move the slider when you want to get the notification
  • Click Ok

In case you fetch the same result you can restart your QuickBooks application and when the QuickBooks restart Window is displayed -> Click Later and update QuickBooks with the latest product release updates.

  • Click Help at the top menu
  • Select the updated QuickBooks application
  • Message – “Update Complete” is displayed
  • Close the program and re-open it
  • Once installation is over reboot your computer

Solution Two: Update QuickBooks Service

  • Firstly restart the system
  • After this, a message will appear on the screen
  • Hit on the Install Later button and then follow the below steps to  reset the QB release update :
    • Discover at the top menu option
    • Hit on the Help button
    • Select Update QuickBooks
    • Once done Hit on Update Now
    • Now click on the Get Updates option that appears near to Reset Update
    • Once the Update Complete message displays hit on Install Now
    • Wait till the installation process finishes
    • After that restart the system

Solution Three: Do A Clean Installation Process Of QuickBooks With Selective Startup Mode

  • Initially, hit and hold the Windows button+R appears on the keyboard
  • It will display the run window
  • You have to write MSConfig
  • After this click on the OK button
  • Now locate the General option in the main menu
  • Choose the selective button
  • Once done click on the Load System Services tab
  • Afterward, discover the Services and then click on Hide all Microsoft Services
  • Now disable all the options and then you need to uncheck the box named Hide all McrosoftService
  • Ensure that you have marked the Windows Installer if not you can place a checkmark on the service list
  • If not marked then place a mark
  • After that hit on OK button
  • Now locate the system configuration and then hit on the Restart option
  • Wait till your computer completes the booting process
  • After this uninstall or uninstall or reinstall the features of QuickBooks

Solution Four: Modify The System Registry In Your Computer

  • Firstly click on Apply any registry repair system to fix the registry entry errors related to the accounting software
  • Hit on the Start option
  • Write the command in the appeared dialog box without hitting on the enter button
  • After this press the Ctrl+Shift buttons
  • Now Click on the Enter key
  • Choose the Yes option in the permission dialog box
  • It will display a window with a blinking cursor
  • Now write Regedit and after this choose a suitable button to press enter key
  • The users will need to choose the failure 15271 that appears in a registry editor
  • Choose the Export button from the main file option
  • Now choose the folder that contains a backup
  • Hit on the Save button
  • Make sure that the chosen branch is between an export range
  • Now resolve the malware errors with the malware expulsion system
  • At last, remove all garbage records from your system

Solution Five: Clear All The System Junk Documents

  • Firstly, conduct a full malware scan on your computer
  • Click on Clean the junk files
  • Afterward, update instantly the PC device drivers
  • Set new system changes
  • Now uninstall the QuickBooks and reinstall the software with the error code 15271
  • After this, you need to run the Windows system file checker to fix the system errors like blue screen issues. Here are the steps you need to follow:
    • Press the Windows button+X button to open the main option
    • Hit on the Command prompt to open it with an administrator mode
    • Once the command prompt window gets displayed on the screen
    • Write sfc/scannow and after this hit on the Enter button
    • It will start the repair process in the system
    • Ensure that you don’t close the command prompt till the repair process complete
    • So wait patiently until the SFC scan finishes  
    • After that restart the system


  1. What are things needed to perform before starting to fix QB payroll update error 15271?

    Before you start troubleshooting the error, there are certain things you need to perform. The very first, create a backup of your company file.

    To do so, you have to follow these steps:

    💠 Initially, launch your QuickBooks Desktop
    💠 Next, go to the File option
    💠 After that, click on the option named “Backup company”
    💠 And then hit the option “Build Local Backup”
    💠 Finally, execute the on-screen procedures to create a backup of a company file.

  2. What are the indications of QuickBooks payroll update error code 15271?

    Check out all the possible signs and symptoms of QuickBooks payroll error 15271:

    💠 When you encounter an error then immediately you’ll receive an error message that pops up on your computer screen
    💠 Windows starts running slowly
    💠 Computers freeze from time to time for a few seconds
    💠 PC crashes after encountering this error
    💠 Windows also responds slowly to the given input from the keyboard or mouse

  3. Is turning off UAC help us in resolving QuickBooks payroll update error code 15271?

    Yes, if you turn off UAC on your computer may help you to get rid of QuickBooks payroll update error code 15271.

  4. How do we turn off UAC on my computer?

    Follow the steps to turn off UAC on your computers:

    💠 Initially, press together Windows + R key from your console
    💠 Now, you can see a run box appears
    💠 Next, enter the Control panel in the search bar and then hit the “OK” button
    💠 After that, go to the “User Accounts” and again hit the “User Accounts” option
    💠 Once done with the above steps hit the “Change user account control settings”
    💠 Using the drop-down. Choose the option “Never Notify”
    💠 Finally, press the “OK” button and then restart your system

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