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Spotify Error Code 18 – Explained and Fixed

The Spotify error code 18 occurs when a user tries to install its desktop version. There are Spotify installation files already present on your computer. This error occurs when the Installer is unable to modify these installation files because they are either already in use or the installer doesn’t have enough permissions.

Spotify error code 18 (main error image)

This issue is most common amongst the Windows users of Spotify and several users have reported this issue.

Why Does this Occur?

Before getting to its solution, let’s check the reasons for this issue because they will help in a better understanding of this error message.

  • This issue mostly occurs because of the leftover Spotify files from a different Spotify version.
  • Third-party applications conflict with the Spotify installer, which might cause this issue.
  • Corrupted Windows services can also cause this error message.

How to Fix Spotify Error Code 18?

Before applying the solutions, we recommend checking the tips mentioned in the ‘Prerequisites’ section. If the prerequisite tips prove useless, try the main solutions.

Pre-requisites

  1. Check whether any ‘Spotify’ process is running in the background or not. If yes, then end all the Spotify-related processes and re-launch the ‘Spotify’ installer to check whether this technique has fixed your issue or not.
  2. You can also check for ‘Spotify’ residuals in the ‘AppData’ directory by typing ‘%appdata%’ in the ‘Run’ dialog box.
  3. Try running the installation as an administrator. This will help start the installer process with elevated privileges.

Deleting Spotify Residuals in ‘Safe Mode with Networking’

For Windows Users

verified solution

If you face the ‘Spotify won’t download error code 18’ issue while trying to download Spotify, we recommend removing the residuals of Spotify first. First, you will have to remove the residuals by booting your computer in ‘Safe Mode with Networking.

  1. First, boot your computer into ‘Safe Mode with Networking.

Important: We have already created a comprehensive guide on different techniques to boot a computer into Safe Mode. So, whichever method you select, you must choose the ‘Safe Mode with Networking’ option.

  1. Once your computer boots into the Safe Mode with Networking, search for Spotify-related files on your system and delete them.

    Searching for ‘Spotify’ in ‘File Explorer’ to discover all the stored files related to ‘Spotify’

Important: Alternatively, you can also check the ‘AppData’ directory for the ‘Spotify’

Opening the ‘AppData’ directory from the ‘Run’ dialog box
  1. After deleting all the Spotify-related files, boot your computer in normal mode.
  2. Then, download and install ‘Spotify’ again from the Windows Store to check whether the error message persists or not.

    Downloading and installing ‘Spotify’ from ‘Windows Store’

After following the steps of this solution, if you have successfully downloaded and installed Spotify, then good for you. Otherwise, try the next solution.

Removing the Conflicting Third-Party Application(s)

Tested for Windows Users

verified solution

If you face the ‘Spotify error code 18′ issue and it is related to your Firewall, it might be due to some conflict with a third-party application. So, we recommend removing the conflicting application(s) before downloading and installing Spotify again. We found the following applications that are tagged as conflicting:

  • iTunes
  • Comodo

Steps for Removing the Traces of ‘Spotify’ Application

  1. First, open the ‘Run’ dialog box (by pressing the ‘Windows+R’ keys).
  2. Then, type ‘%appdata%’ in the search box and click on the ‘OK’ button to open the ‘AppData’ directory.

    Opening the ‘AppData’ directory from the ‘Run’ dialog box
  3. Now, locate the ‘Spotify’ folder in the ‘AppData’ directory and delete it.

    Locating and deleting the ‘Spotify’ folder from the ‘AppData’ directory

Steps for Removing the Conflicting Application(s)

  1. Open ‘Control Panel’ and choose the ‘Uninstall a program’ option under the ‘Programs’ category.
    Opening ‘Control Panel’ via ‘Start menu’

    Clicking on the ‘Uninstall a program’ option under the ‘Programs’ Category inside the ‘Control Panel’ window
  2. Then, locate the conflicting application(s) (‘iTunes,’ ‘Comodo, etc.) and select it.
  3. After that, click on the ‘Uninstall’ option.

    Selecting the ‘iTunes’ application and clicking on the ‘Uninstall’ option
  4. The system will display a confirmation message. So, click on the ‘Yes’ button to confirm the uninstallation procedure.

    Confirmation message for iTunes uninstallation
  5. Now, follow the on-screen instructions to complete the uninstallation.

Important: You can follow the same procedure for uninstalling some other conflicting application(s) as well

Steps for Rebooting the System

  1. Once you have uninstalled the conflicting application(s), restart your system by clicking on the ‘Start’ < ‘Power’ < ‘Restart’ options.

    Restarting the system

Steps for Installing the ‘Spotify’ Application

  1. Now, download and install the ‘Spotify’ application again from Windows Store.

    Downloading and installing ‘Spotify’ from ‘Windows Store’
  2. After that, install the (uninstalled) conflicting application.

Check whether Spotify is working fine or not. If Spotify is not working fine, try the next solution.

Exiting ‘Steam’ and Installing ‘Spotify’ Again

For Steam Users

verified solution

Both Steam and Spotify use the same technology to prevent a system from hacking attempts. So, if you are trying to install Spotify while some Steam process is running in the background, you will face the Spotify download error code 18. This issue occurs because the ‘Steam Client Service’ might be using the ‘SpotifyWebHelper’ and ‘SpotifyHelper’ files in the background. We recommend closing the ‘Steam’ application completely and installing the ‘Spotify’ application (afterward).

  1. First, open the ‘Task Manager’ and check whether any Steam-related process is running in the background or not.
    Opening the ‘Task Manager’ from the ‘Start menu’

    Indicating the Steam-related processes in the ‘Task Manager’
  2. If yes, then close all the Steam-related processes.

Note: If no Steam-related process is running in the ‘Task Manager, this solution is not for you. So, try some other solution

  1. Now, ‘follow the first two steps of Solution # 2’ to reach the ‘AppData’ directory.
  2. Then, locate the ‘SpotifyWebHelper’ and ‘SpotifyHelper’ folders in the ‘AppData < Roaming’ directory and delete them.
  3. After that, try to install the ‘Spotify’ application again.

Check whether the error message persists or not. If yes, try the next solution.

Restarting related Services

verified solution

As mentioned earlier, corrupted services might be the reason for the Spotify error code 18. So, if this is your case, we recommend re-enabling all the ‘Services’ and trying to install the ‘Spotify’ application again.

  1. First, open the ‘System Configuration’ application on your system.

    Opening the ‘System Configuration’ application from the ‘Start menu’
  2. Then, switch to the ‘Services’ tab and click on the ‘Disable all’ button.

    Switching to the ‘Services’ tab and clicking on the ‘Disable all’ button
  3. Now, apply the changes by clicking on the ‘Apply’ < ‘OK’ buttons.

    Applying the changes after clicking on the ‘Disable all’ button
  4. The ‘System Configuration’ application will prompt you to restart the system. So, click on the ‘Restart’ button.

    Clicking on the ‘Restart’ button to restart the system after disabling all the services
  5. Now, your computer will act a bit weird after boot up as it won’t have any internet access. So, this behavior is entirely fine.
  6. Then, repeat the first two steps of this solution. However, click on the ‘Enable all’ button this time.

    Switching to the ‘Services’ tab and clicking on the ‘Enable all’ button
  7. After that, apply the changes again by clicking on the ‘Apply’ < ‘OK’ buttons.

    Applying the changes after clicking on the ‘Enable all’ button
  8. Again, the ‘System Configuration’ application will prompt you to restart the system. So, click on the ‘Restart’ button.

    Clicking on the ‘Restart’ button to restart the system after disabling all the services
  9. Doing this will enable all the disabled services. So, when your computer boots up (normally), try to install the ‘Spotify’ application and check whether the problem persists or not.

If the problem persists, read the ‘Conclusion’ section. Otherwise, good for you.

Talha Saeed

I am a BSCS graduate and a technology nerd who now loves working and writing about computers and other tech-related stuff. In my free time, I like watching Netflix and playing Cricket 22 and The Witcher 3 (Wild Hunt).

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