Eclipse failed, Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369

Eclipse suddenly started to hang when starting up around “Loading Workbench” 805306369. Eclipse stopped responding and you get the dialog to close the program. “Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369”

Eclipse failed, Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369

The error shown afterwards: “Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369”

Eclipse failed, Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369

If you are running java 1.6u21 then look at Eclipse Bug 319514 and The Oracle/Sun fix on Eclipse wiki site.

This however wasn’t the problem as I was running Java 1.6.0_31b05. Tried to uninstall and reinstall Java but no success. Tried to look through the plugins I was using but nothing.

Solution Corrupt Workspace

The error was due to a corrupt workspace. As I disable the workspace check in the startup I couldn’t select another workspace since Eclipse wouldn’t start. Rename the workspace e.g. to “workspace1”. Eclipse will start and create a new uncorrupted workspace and work without any problems. Afterwards you can import your project into your new workspace and in the end remove the old corrupted workspace.


The error message “Java was started but returned exit code=-805306369” usually occurs when there is an issue with the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) or the Eclipse installation. Here are a few steps you can try to resolve this issue:

  • Check Java installation: Make sure that you have Java installed and it’s in the system’s PATH environment variable. To check if Java is installed, open the command prompt or terminal and run the command “java -version”. If Java is installed, you should see the version information. If Java is not installed, download and install the latest version from the official Java website.
  • Check Eclipse installation: Make sure that Eclipse is installed correctly and all the required components are installed. Try running Eclipse as an administrator and see if it resolves the issue. You can also try to reinstall Eclipse to ensure that all the necessary components are installed correctly.
  • Check Eclipse.ini file: Sometimes, the issue can be with the Eclipse configuration file, “eclipse.ini”. Open the file and make sure that the correct Java installation path is specified in the “-vm” option. If the “-vm” option is not present, add it to the file and specify the correct Java installation path.
  • Increase heap size: If the issue persists, you can try increasing the heap size of the JVM. Open the eclipse.ini file and add the following lines at the end of the file:

-Xms512m -Xmx1024m

This will allocate a minimum of 512MB and a maximum of 1024MB of memory to the JVM.

If none of the above steps work, you may want to try updating your Java version to the latest available version, or check if there is any compatibility issue with your operating system. Additionally, you can check the Eclipse log files to get more detailed error messages that can help in troubleshooting the issue.