Application has been blocked to accessing graphics hardware

Matthew Adams
by Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
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  • The Application has been blocked from accessing graphics hardware is an error message that can appear at the bottom right of the Windows 10 desktop. The error message appears when some users try to play Windows or browser games.
  • The error can be due to corrupted graphics card system files, so the System File Checker, which scans for and repairs corrupted system files, can potentially resolve the issue.
  • System errors are usually pretty serious so don't delay the intervention. Read our article from the  System errors section for possible solutions.
  •  If an error is nagging you, go to our Windows 10 errors Hub for a quick solution.
How to fix Application has been blocked from accessing graphics hardware

What to do if apps have been blocked from accessing GPU

  1. Run a System File Checker Scan
  2. Reinstall the Graphics Card Driver
  3. Update the Graphics Card Driver
  4. Roll Windows 10 Back to a System Restore Point
  5. Edit the Registry

The Application has been blocked from accessing graphics hardware is an error message that can appear at the bottom right of the Windows 10 desktop.

The error message appears when some users try to play Windows or browser games.

It is a graphics issue that stops games running. These are some of the resolutions that might fix the Application has been blocked issue in Windows 10.

How can I fix Application has been blocked errors?

1. Run a System File Checker Scan

The Application has been blocked error can be due to corrupted graphics card system files. So the System File Checker, which scans for and repairs corrupted system files, can potentially resolve the issue.

This is how users can run an SFC scan within Windows 10.

  1. Open the Win + X menu with the Windows key + X keyboard shortcut.
  2. Click Command Prompt (Admin) to open the Prompt’s window.
  3. Input ‘DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth’ within the Command Prompt, and press the Enter key.
    No Task Manager Windows 10
  4. Thereafter, enter sfc /scannow and press Return to initiate an SFC scan that might last for about 20-30 minutes.
  5. Restart Windows if the system file scan fixes files.

2. Reinstall the Graphics Card Driver

The Application has been blocked error often arises as a consequence of an incompatible or corrupted graphics card driver. Some users have stated that the error message pops up after a Windows 10 build update.

So the graphics card driver might be misconfigured after an update Thus, reinstalling the video card driver might resolve the issue. Users can reinstall the graphics card driver as follows.

  1. Press the Windows key + X keyboard shortcut, and select Device Manager on the Win + X menu.
  2. Double-click Display adapters to expand that category.
    Device Manager
  3. Right-click the graphics card and select the Uninstall device.
  4. Select the Delete the driver software for this device option on the dialog box window that opens.
  5. Then click the Uninstall button.
  6. Press the Scan for hardware changes button to reinstall the driver.

3. Update the Graphics Card Driver

Alternatively, try updating the graphics card driver with Driver Booster 6. DB 6 scans and lists outdated, faulty, or missing device drivers. Then users can select to update drivers for listed devices.

Click the Free Download button on Driver Booster 6’s webpage to add that software to Windows. The software automatically scans when users launch it.

Press the Update Now button if the display adapter driver needs updating. Restart Windows after updating the driver.

Driver Booster

4. Roll Windows 10 Back to a System Restore Point

System Restore can fix numerous issues as it undoes system changes after a selected restore point.

So that utility might also fix Application has been blocked error if users can select a restore point that will roll Windows 10 back to a time when the error message did not pop up on the Windows 10 desktop.

This is how users can roll back to the previous version of Windows 10.

  1. Open Run with its Windows key + R keyboard shortcut.
  2. Enter ‘rstrui’ in Run, and click the OK button.
  3. Click the Next button on the System Restore window that opens.
  4. The System Restore window might include a Show more restore option. Select that option if you can expand the restore point list.
  5. Choose a restore point to roll Windows 10 back to.
  6. Click the Next and Finish buttons.

Note that users can’t roll Windows 10 back to previous build versions with System Restore. However, the Settings app will temporarily include an option to restore the previous version.

Then users can still restore a previous Windows 10 version for about 10 days after a build update.

To do that, click the Type here to search button on the taskbar. Then enter update in the search box, and select Recovery options to open Settings.

Press the Get started button under the Go back to previous Windows 10 version subheading.


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5. Edit the Registry

Increasing the TDR (Timeout Detection and Recovery) time is another potential resolution for the Application has been blocked error. Users can raise the TDR time to about eight seconds.

To do that, edit the registry as follows.

  1. Enter regedit in Cortana’s search box.
  2. Right-click regedit and select Run as administrator.
  3. Then browse to the ComputerHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMControlSet001ControlGraphicsDrivers or ComputerHKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMControlSet002ControlGraphicsDrivers registry key path.
  4. Select the GraphicsDrivers key on the left of the window.
    Registry Editor
  5. Right-click an empty space on the right of the window and select QWORD (64-bit) Value. Alternatively, select DWORD (32-bit) Value if you have a 32-bit Windows platform.
  6. Type TdrDelay as the QWORD or DWORD title.
  7. Double-click TdrDelay to open the window shown directly below.
  8. Then enter 8 in the Value data text box, and click the OK button.
  9. Restart the laptop or desktop.

Those resolutions might kick-start games that the Application has been blocked error message pops up for. If anybody has another resolution that fixes the same issue, feel free to share it below.

FAQ: Read more about the Application has been blocked error

  • What do you mean by graphics hardware?
Graphics hardware is computer hardware that generates computer graphics and allows them to be shown on a display, usually using a graphics card (video card) in combination with a device driver to create the images on the screen.
  • How do I fix application has been blocked from accessing graphics hardware?

The first thing you should do is to run a System File Checker scan. If that doesn’t solve the problem, follow our step-by-step guide in solving this issue.

  • Does graphic card use RAM?
Stand-alone graphics cards have their own memory to use but an integrated graphics processing unit (GPU) uses the system’s memory instead. Therefore, the video card will use a portion of the available memory for graphics processing.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in January 2019 and has been since revamped and updated in May 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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