SOLVED! “Shutdown Reason: Kernel API”

Overall, computers shutting down/restarting out of the blue is one of the last things that Windows users want to use. To return their device to normal, people have no choice but to locate the root cause and take care of it. Your PC also shuts down suddenly from time to time and Event Viewer keeps logging an entry about “Shutdown Reason: Kernel API”? In that case, this article is for you.



For your information, Microsoft releases updates for its Windows operating system every now and then to refine features, fix bugs, … If you keep your version of Windows up-to-date, it should run smoothly in most of the cases. On the other hand, if you neglect the updates, there is a good chance that your Windows PC would experience issues in the course of operation. Thus, once it comes to Event Viewer logging “Shutdown Reason: Kernel API”, you should consider obsolescence.

Fast Startup

All in all, Fast Startup is a handy feature but it could lead to errors as time passes by too. Your computer keeps shutting down/restarting as you use it? Then it’s strongly recommended that you give Fast Startup some thought.

Power Settings

Windows allows users to apply changes to the power settings depending on the situation. Still, if people mess up the power settings, it’s possible that their computers would go haywire. That is why you should take power settings into account while deducing the reason behind the appearance of “Shutdown Reason: Kernel API” in Event Viewer.

How To Bring The Computer Back To Normal 


In the beginning, it’s wise to update the Windows operating system of your computer. To update Windows, you need to go through the steps down below:

  • Step 1: Press the Windows + I, select Update & Security and choose Check for updates.
  • Step 2: In the case that an update is available, download and install it.
  • Step 3: Restart your computer.

Disable Fast Startup 

Fast Startup is a combination of shutdown and hibernate which could complicate performance on occasion. Therefore, it’s a good idea to disable Fast Startup if computers don’t work as expected.

  • Step 1: Go to Search bar, type power setting and hit Enter.
  • Step 2: Select Additional power settings, choose Choose what the power buttons do and Uncheck Turn on fast start-up.
  • Step 3: Click Save changes, close everything and restart your computer.

Command Prompt

Via Command Prompt, you could run a number of repair tools: CHKDSK (Check Disk), Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) and System File Checker (SFC). The tools could address a wide range of issues on PC including random shutdowns/restarts.


  • Step 1: Go to Search bar, type cmd, right-click Command Prompt and pick Run as administrator.
  • Step 2: In Command Prompt (Admin), type chkdsk /r and hit Enter. Allow the scan to run all the way to the end.
  • Step 3: Exit Command Prompt and restart your computer.


  • Step 1: Go to Search bar, type cmd, right-click Command Prompt and pick Run as administrator.
  • Step 2: In Command Prompt (Admin), type sfc /scannow and press Enter. Wait for the scan to complete.
  • Step 3: Proceed to type DISM /online /cleanup-image /restorehealth and hit Enter.

Change Power Settings

“Shutdown Reason: Kernel API” is an Event Viewer entry that involves the kernel power manager. As a result, you have to consider changing the power settings here and there.

  • Step 1: Go to Search bar, type power setting and hit Enter.
  • Step 2: In Power & Sleep, choose Additional power settings under Related settings.
  • Step 3: In Power Options, select Change when the computer sleeps.
  • Step 4: Click Change advanced power settings.
  • Step 5: Expand Hard disk and turn off hard disk after. Ensure that On battery and Plugged in are both set to Never. In the case that Never is not available, type 0 and change to Never.
  • Step 6: Expand Sleep and Sleep after and make sure that On battery and Plugged in are set to Never.
  • Step 7: Lastly, select Apply and choose OK.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the characteristics of the Kernel API error?

Whenever the Kernel API error occurs, there can be a sudden power loss, system crash or unresponsive desktop. The error could appear when Windows starts up and it detects that the previous shutdown was incorrectly done.

Could hardware issues lead to Kernel API error?

In some cases, yes. This Kernel API error can emerge if the rear section of your Power Supply Unit (PSU) gets oxidized. Replace the PSU to restore normal computer operation.

What is the role of Kernel in my computer?

The Kernel deals with memory management, process handling, file system administration, networking and device control.

Tips And Tricks

  • Use Power Options in your Control Panel to create the ideal power plan. That will let your Windows computer work at optimum levels and handle system-level operations at high speeds.
  • Disable programs that run at startup via the Startup tab in your Task Manager to reduce the load on your system’s Kernel.
  • Keep track of Kernel’s operations through Resource and Performance Monitor. You could get to it if you type perfmon /report in Run then hit Enter.
  • Update your Windows computer once every six months through Check for updates. By doing so, you could keep everything up-to-date, avoid bugs, improve the performance of features, etc.
  • Open Task Manager and Services to grasp operations that run on your PC. If you notice lags, stop some of the processes or services to speed up your PC.


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