How to fix Windows 8 HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED error

Last month, I downloaded a Microsoft Windows 8 “Developer Preview Mode” at the Windows Dev Center. But since it is still on the “Developer Preview” mode, I presume its filled with lots of bugs and incompatibilities with other softwares. Instead of installing it on my hard disk, I just resort to installing it on a virtual machine.

Well, I’m out of luck.

The above image depicts the ever popular “Blue Screen of Death” or BSoD, quite common in the Windows 95 to Windows ME era. On the later versions (Windows 2000 and up) the stop screen seldom appears. On Windows 8, the stop screen is more user friendly.

The installation error “HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED” appeared while I was installing Windows 8. I tried it on Microsoft VirtualPC 2007, Oracle VirtualBox 4.1.4, and VMWare Workstation 7.1.4. So I thought indeed Windows 8 is incompatible with 3rd party softwares, even on machine emulators.

Below are the possible fix for the Windows 8 “HAL_INITIALIZATION_FAILED” error:

* Use the latest VMWare virtualization software (version 8 as of writing). Download the evaluation version here.

* When using the Oracle VirtualBox, make sure to use the latest version (download here). Set the processors option to 2 (Dual CPU), and set the initial operating system type to Windows 7 64bit.

* Remove any USB appliance that can cause conflict with the virtual machine

* Check if your host machine passes the requirements

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