Watch Dog Initialization Error Fix – AVG and Windows 10

Over the last couple of months, my wife’s work computer has been plagued with an issue upon booting Windows 10, where a screen pops up showing the text below:

Phase 0: Starting Watch Dog Initialization: Phase 0: Loading Config…(roots, krnl, setup) Phase 0: Pre-initialization events. Phase 0: Creating Watch Dog dynamic key list. Phase 0: Subsystems initialization. Phase 0: Finished. Phase 1: Initialize components… Phase 1: Starting reactor… Phase 1: Starting components… Phase 1: Starting internal subsystems… Phase 1: Starting command channels… Phase 1: Srm start actions… Phase 1: Starting external subsystems… Phase 1: Finished…

The computer would then simply freeze, never getting past this point. At times, the system would simply have to be restarted and it would work, while other times it would take an hour of restarting to be able to access safe mode and get Windows booting again.

A bit of a side topic, but I really do miss the simplicity of getting into safe mode with previous versions of Windows. Gone are the days of simply mashing F8 and selecting your option; you now have to wade around a myriad of options to be able to find the safe mode boot option. This, in general, seems like a huge oversight in Windows 10, removing simplicity and replacing it with a completely asinine process. Several times, I actually found that mashing F8 to get into the recovery screen of Windows 10 only worked sometimes and definitely not every time. Granted, it probably would have been much simpler had I been onsite with a recovery thumb drive or disc. But back to the bigger issue.

After a couple of weeks, the problem seemed to completely go away, so we decided to pause the uninstallation of AVG since we were no longer having the issue.

Then, on Sunday, my aunt called with the same issue. It took a bit of work, but we were able to get Windows booted into safe mode. I looked around and couldn’t find any similarities between the two machines. We again chalked it up to a conflict in Windows 10, possibly due to a recent update and AVG itself. We rebooted and for the next two hours were unable to get safe mode, the recovery dashboard, or Windows 10 to boot. I was temporarily defeated, especially once we did get safe mode to boot and have Windows report that we couldn’t use the current user to install AVG, that it needed to be an admin account – even though this account was and is.

Then I asked a question I should have asked in the beginning: “Is anything plugged into the USB?” Her answer was yes, she had her USB wireless mouse receiver plugged in. We removed it, and the system instantly booted into Windows. We restarted, put the USB in, and lo and behold, the system hung itself again. Issue figured out. In the morning, I asked the wife if her computer used a Logitech mouse. Her reply was no, but they did use a Logitech Keyboard. However, since the issue on the wife’s computer hasn’t resurfaced, I am unable to definitively say the issue lies with AVG, Windows 10, and Logitech’s line of mice/keyboards.

So, if you have this issue, simply unplug the Logitech device, restart, and you should be able to boot back into Windows again. Then, worst case, you can uninstall AVG and install a different antivirus solution.

To uninstall all AVG, head over to AVG and download their removal tool:

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