HP Photosmart C7280 driver install fails with an error registering hpbmiapi.dll failed to register

March 2, 2009 at 12:12 am 48 comments

Recently, my mom’s troublesome Brothers MFC-3360C All-In-One printer finally died. The printer was just pure evil. Dust would collect around the tray and make it impossible to remove the paper tray. The ink cartridge would run dry every couple of months even though no one printed anything because it continuously self-clean. I was not unhappy to see it go.

I replaced it with a HP Photosmart C7280 All-In-One. The printer looked solid and I hope that it will last longer than the Brothers, but our relationship soured quickly when I attempted to install the drivers. The driver failed with the following error:

Fatal error during Installation
Module C:\Windows\system32\hpbmiapi.dll failed to register. HRESULT -2147221164. Contact your support personnel.
Please go to http://www.hp.com/support for troubleshooting information about "Fatal Error" and "MSI.dot4wrp".

Since the CD install didn’t work, I downloaded the latest drivers from HP and they didn’t work. I tried to unzip the drivers and locate the hpbmiapi.dll and manually register the dll, but I ran out of disk space. I tried google and notice that many HP owners of a different printer had similar issues, but was resolved by a patch from HP.

I called HP customer support in hopes that they will have a patch for the C7280, but they were less than helpful.  I mentioned that various other people on the HP forum had the same issue, but they told me that no one has reported this issue. After trying a few things, they declared that the problem was Microsoft’s fault and that I should call up Microsoft since they will know what the problem is. They wouldn’t escalate the issue because it was a Microsoft problem. Right…

This post gave me a clue:


The hpbmiapi.dll registration failed because of a dependency. Apparently hpbmiapi.dll is dependent on atl.dll (Active Template Library) to be registered. When it wasn’t, the install blew up when it failed to register hpbmiapi.dll. What the error message should have mentioned was the dependency.

To fix the problem, do the following:

  1. Check if atl.dll exists in your system directory. It’s usually in C:\Windows\system32. If it exists, go to the next step. If it does not, you may be able to install it by downloading and installing the Visual C++ 6.0 runtime at:
  2. Once it’s there, you can register it by running the following command in a command window (you must be an admin of the system):

    regsvr32 C:\WINDOWS\system32\atl.dll

  3. Now install the driver again. This time the install should work.

I am hoping that this article will help someone save a few hours of frustration. Sadly, I have had good luck with HP in the past. It’s clear that they are no longer the company they used to be.


Entry filed under: Hardware, Windows.

Testing eboostr on an older machine HP Photosmart C7280 Driver Install Tips

48 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Mike  |  March 3, 2009 at 3:02 pm

    Ran into this today on one of the computers on our network I was setting up. Thanks for the fix. It should be noted that if the file is there, you do not need the download. Just execute the regsvr32 from start–>run. Also, there is a space after the regsvr32 and the location of the file.

    Thanks again!

  • 2. Gerald  |  March 16, 2009 at 2:29 pm

    Thank you very much. This was very helpful.

  • 3. Mike  |  May 18, 2009 at 9:17 pm

    Thanks, man! This saved the day. I tried registering it by hand too and I also tried using the Regdd.zip utility too. Was about to take the Officejet 6500 back to the store when I googled hpbmiapi and found your post. I registered atl.dll like you said and voila, the installation CD was able to install my HP AIO software.

    Sending good karma your way.

  • 4. Leonard  |  July 9, 2009 at 8:07 pm

    If you’re willing to pay more than $250.00 for this HP Officejet 6500 printer, you’ll be paying too much! Right now, there is an online seller offering this beauty for $70.00! I located the site (one in over 100 sites) in less than a minute of search time! That’s how I find all of my bargains; by using the Genie bargain finder software tool downloaded free from:

  • 5. Tom Law  |  July 17, 2009 at 2:35 pm

    Thank you so much – that worked brilliantly.

  • 6. Robert  |  August 27, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    Thanks! Worked perfectly. You are amazing.

  • 7. Sue  |  September 26, 2009 at 1:41 pm

    Thank YOU…. You’re a life saver.. been going out of my mind with HP support trying to get my printer to work.. continued to get this install error.. after 3 support people and total of 5 hours on the phone, they said.. ‘we can’t help and we need to escalate to tier3 support’. after a quick qoogle search, came across your suggestion and had my issue fixed and the printer working within 30minutes.

    Maybe you need to go work for HP.. god knows they could use people that know what they are doing..

    Thanks for posting your solution.

  • 8. Ben  |  October 24, 2009 at 11:50 am

    Thank you very much for this help.

    I have bought a HP Photosmart C4680 All-In-One and it was impossible to install driver. I tried all the solution described on the Hp web site but none of all worked.

    After a quick research on internet I found your article. I follow your instructions, reinstalled the driver and it worked !!!!!!

    thank you very much !

  • 9. Manfred  |  December 27, 2009 at 5:35 am

    You are awesome!!!!
    After spending 2 days reading a lot of bullshit in other blogs and forums, mainly HP written, this was a simple solution.
    It worked immediately and simple with my old W2K PC.
    You saved me buying a new one – thanks.

  • 10. Joe  |  January 6, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    Amazing that it is so simple and HP makes it so hard….Thank you for your simplistic solution….you should do this for some big companies.

  • 11. Yoe  |  January 10, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    Thanks a lot from Spain!. Very easy and clear… not as HP 😦

  • 12. Alicia Gill  |  June 4, 2010 at 9:42 am

    I want to THANK the person who originally posted the fix for this issue…. and just as a buyer’s note… my office purchased the HP Officejet Pro 8500 wireless, and we had this same issue with registering the atl.dll file…. so beware of this with any of these HP printers……!

  • 13. Stephen  |  October 2, 2010 at 5:30 am

    What foolish thing is that? why won’t you let me download the drivers of hp photosmart c7280 printer all-in-one

  • 14. Tonya  |  October 2, 2010 at 8:24 am

    I love you!!!

    Ok… that’s only teasing a little bit. I have been trying for HOURS to fix my printer and of course haven’t found an answer to this issue until NOW.

    Even though I have an HP Deskjet F4240 All in One this was the issue with it!

    I did exactly what you said found the atl.dll file in my system32 file so went in and registered it, and it’s installing beautifully.

    Thank you so much for this post!

    I have so much work to catch up on after it’s installed. 😉

    Happy Home schooling Mommy!

  • 15. Zenon Pylyshyn  |  July 26, 2011 at 10:15 pm

    The solution did not work for me. In fact I got several fatal error messages and then my computer would not reboot (well it did after about 15 minutes of apparently sitting there). It seems, according to one fatal error message) I have a problem with Adobe Flash although the URL did not work. So it seems that HP has done nothing about this common error after several years. It just confirms what I always believed abut HP — I had the same kinds of problems with an earlier version of a printer-scanner and eventually had to settle for a work-around that required that I reboot the computer before each scan!

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    En Français. Après 3 jours de recherche je viens de réussir à installer HP C4580 sur Vista.Imprimante achetée en 2009.hpboid.dll failed to register. Effectivement en copiant dans le registre comme indiqué plus haut atl.dll, l’installation s’effectue normalement.Merci à l’initiateur de cette solution.
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