Problem with initialising Direct3D in Windows 10 [GAMER’S GUIDE]

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
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solve Critical error Start Menu not working on Windows 10

One of the worst things that can happen to you if you’re a PC gamer is that you cannot start your favorite video game.

Some users have reported an error message saying that there has been a problem initializing Direct3D in Windows 10, and if you’re a gamer with this problem, you might want to check the following solutions.

Problems with Direct3D will prevent you from enjoying your favorite video games. There are various Direct3D problems that can occur, and in this article, we’re going to cover the following issues:

  • Initialization of Direct3D device failed – This is a common problem with Direct3D on Windows. However, you can easily fix this issue by using one of our solutions.
  • Failed to initialize Direct3D with current settings – Another common error that can occur with Direct3D. To fix the problem you might have to reinstall the necessary Visual C++ Redistributables.
  • Error initializing Direct3D device is not available – Few users reported a message saying that the Direct3D device isn’t available. This problem usually appears due to issues with your drivers.
  • Cannot initialize Direct3D device – This is just a variation of the previous error, and it’s most likely caused by your drivers.
  • Initializing Direct3D VirtualBox – This error can appear in Windows, but it can also appear while using virtualization apps such as VirtualBox.
  • Direct3D error code 38 – Several users reported Error code 38. This can be a big problem, but you should be able to fix it by using one of our solutions.
  • Direct3D unable to create the device, set display mode – Some users reported that Direct3D is unable to create a device or to set display mode. To fix this issue, be sure to check your graphics card drivers.
  • Direct3D out of memory – This is also a relatively common problem with Direct3D. If you’re getting this error, make sure that the application you’re trying to run is installed properly.
  • Direct3D could not be correctly initialized – Another error that can occur with Direct3D. This error can be a big problem since it will prevent you from accessing the desired applications.

How can I deal with problems when initializing Direct3D on Windows 10?

  1. Run inbuilt Hardware & Device troubleshooter
  2. Update your graphics card driver
  3. Check for display driver updates in Optional Updates
  4. Uninstall and reinstall the display driver
  5. Install an older driver
  6. Change the game’s resolution
  7. Reinstall Visual C++ Redistributables
  8. Remove the problematic update
  9. Rename the problematic DLL file

Solution 1 – Run inbuilt Hardware & Device troubleshooter

This is a pretty simple solution, and it will automatically check if your new hardware installed properly.

  1. First, press Windows + S keys on your keyboard to open the search option.
  2. Enter Troubleshoot and click Troubleshoot.
    Cannot initialize Direct3D device troubleshooter system settings
  3. Click on Hardware and Devices and then click on Run the troubleshooter button.
    Initializing Direct3D VirtualBox run the hardware and devices troubleshooter
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the troubleshooter.

After the troubleshooter is finished, check if the issue still persists.

If the Troubleshooter stops before completing the process, fix it with the help of this complete guide.

Solution 2 – Update your graphics card driver

Sometimes problems with initialising Direct3D can be caused by your graphics card driver. To fix the issue, you need to update your driver by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + R. In the Run prompt, enter devmgmt.msc and then press OK button.
    Initialization of Direct3D device failed device manager
  2. In Device Manager, you need to find Display adapters section and click it to expand it.
  3. Find your display driver from the list, it should be the only one available, and right-click the display driver and then click Update driver.
    Failed initialize Direct3D with current settings update gpu driver
  4. Select Search Automatically for Updated Driver Software.
    Error initializing Direct3D device is not available search automatically for updated driver software
  5. Windows will now search and update the selected driver automatically.

Want the latest GPU drivers? Bookmark this page and always stay updated with the latest and greatest.

Once your driver is updated, the problem with Direct3D should be fixed.

Update drivers automatically

In case you don’t have the necessary skills to update your drivers manually and you risk to damage your computer by downloading the wrong driver version, we strongly recommend to do it automatically by using Tweakbit’s Driver Updater tool.

This tool is approved by Microsoft and Norton Antivirus. After several tests, our team concluded that this is the best-automatized solution. Below you can find a quick guide on how to do it.

  1. Download and install TweakBit Driver Updater
  2. driver updater starting windowOnce installed, the program will start scanning your PC for outdated drivers automatically. Driver Updater will check your installed driver versions against its cloud database of the latest versions and recommend proper updates. All you need to do is wait for the scan to complete.
  3. driver updater diagnozingUpon scan completion, you get a report on all problem drivers found on your PC. Review the list and see if you want to update each driver individually or all at once. To update one driver at a time, click the ‘Update driver’ link next to the driver name. Or simply click the ‘Update all’ button at the bottom to automatically install all recommended updates.
    driver updater scan finished
    Note: Some drivers need to be installed in multiple steps so you will have to hit the ‘Update’ button several times until all of its components are installed.

Disclaimer: some functions of this tool are not free.

Did you know that the majority of Windows 10 users have outdated drivers? Be a step ahead using this guide.

Solution 3 – Check for display driver updates in Optional Updates

  1. Open the Start screen/menu and type Windows Update.
  2. Click on Settings on the right side and then select Install optional updates from the left results.
  3. Windows Update control panel should open and then all you need to do is to click Check for Updates on the top left corner to in order to receive the latest updates.

After downloading the necessary updates, the issue should be fixed.

The Check for updates button is missing? Don’t worry, this step-by-step guide will help you get it back.

Solution 4 – Uninstall and reinstall the display driver

  1. First, open Device Manager.
  2. Find Display adapters and click to expand it.
  3. Right-click the display card driver and click Uninstall device in the context menu.
    Direct3D error code 38 uninstall device
  4. Windows will ask you to confirm the removal of the device, so click Uninstall to remove the driver. If available, be sure to check Delete the driver software for this device option before you uninstall your driver.
    Direct3D unable to create device delete driver software uninstall device GPU
  5. After the uninstallation is complete, you’ll need to restart the computer in order to load the default display drivers.
  6. Now you just need to visit your graphics card manufacturer’s website and install the driver for your graphics card

Windows can’t automatically find and download new drivers? Don’t worry, we’ve got the right solutions for you.

If you want to completely delete all files associated with your graphics card, you might want to check our guide on how to use Display Driver Uninstaller. This is a free tool that will remove all files and registry entries associated with your display driver.

Updating drivers manually is very annoying, so we recommend you to download this driver updater tool (100% safe and tested by us) to do it automatically. Thus, you will prevent file loss and even permanent damage to your computer.

Solution 5 – Install an older driver

If you have problems initialising Direct3D while trying to run certain games, you might want to install an older driver for your graphics card.

Simply uninstall the currently installed driver and download the older version from the manufacturer’s website.

Installing the latest drivers is usually better, but some older games might have issues with them, so try installing older drivers and see if that helps. This is a simple solution, so be sure to try it out.

Solution 6 – Change the game’s resolution

Sometimes problems with initialising Direct3D can be caused by your game’s configuration. Several users reported that they were unable to start their game while using a specific resolution.

To fix the problem, simply change the game’s resolution from its configuration app and try to run it again. If that game doesn’t have a configuration app, try changing its resolution in configuration files or in the registry.

This isn’t the most user-friendly solution, but few users reported that they solved the problem by using this method.

Several users also reported that they fixed the problem by setting the game to run in Windowed mode. After enabling Windowed mode the issue should be completely resolved.

Want to know how to create custom resolutions? Check out this guide and learn how to do it like an expert!

Windows won’t let you change your display resolution? Take a look at this article and fix the issue quickly.

Solution 7 – Reinstall Visual C++ Redistributables

To fix this problem many users are recommending to reinstall your Visual C++ Redistributables. This is relatively simple, and you can do it by following these steps:

  1. Press Windows Key + S and enter Control panel. Select Control Panel from the list of results.
    Error initializing Direct3D device is not available control panel
  2. When Control Panel opens, click on Programs and Features.
    Cannot initialize Direct3D device
  3. List of all installed applications will now appear. Double click the desired Redistributable in order to remove it.
    Initializing Direct3D VirtualBox uninstall redistributables

You can’t open Control Panel? Take a look at this step-by-step guide to find a solution.

After removing the problematic Redistributable, you need to reinstall it again. You can download all Visual C++ Redistributables from Microsoft’s website for free. Many games also come with Visual C++ setup files, so you don’t have to download anything.

Simply open the installation directory of the game you want to run, locate vcredist directory and install all files from it. After doing that, the issue with Direct3D should be resolved.

It’s also worth mentioning that sometimes you don’t have to reinstall Visual C++ Redistributables. Sometimes you might not have the necessary Redistributable installed, and you just need to download it or install it from vcredist directory to fix the problem.

Download and install the latest Visual C++ Redistributables from right here!

Solution 8 – Remove the problematic update

Sometimes you might have problems initialising Direct3D due to problematic updates. If this error started occurring after installing a Windows 10 update, be sure to remove it. To remove a problematic update, you need to do the following:

  1. Press Windows Key + I to open the Settings app.
  2. Now navigate to the Update & security section.
    Direct3D out of memory update & security
  3. Click on Update history.
    Direct3D could not be correctly initialized update history
  4. Now click on Uninstall updates.
    Initialization of Direct3D device failed uninstall updates
  5. Locate the problematic update and double click it to uninstall it.
    Failed initialize Direct3D with current settings uninstall updates windows 10

If removing the update fixes the issue, you might want to prevent this update from installing automatically. We already wrote a guide on how to block automatic Windows updates, so be sure to check it out for detailed instructions.

If you’re having trouble opening the Setting app, take a look at this article to solve the issue.

Solution 9 – Rename the problematic DLL file

If you have issues initializing Direct3D, the problem might be a specific DLL file. Users reported this error while trying to run certain games, and in order to fix this issue, you just need to rename a single file. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Go to the game’s installation directory and locate d3d9.dll and d3d11.dll.
  2. Right-click d3d9.dll and rename it to oldd3d9.dll.

After doing that, the game will be forced to use d3d11.dll and the issue should be resolved. Keep in mind that this is a crude workaround, so it won’t work with all games.

Need alternatives? Here are 14 of the best file rename software tools available right now!

Just like many other issues, initializing Direct3D in Windows 10 problem is probably caused by incompatibility between a graphics driver and Windows 10, but just like most of those incompatibility issues, we expect to see them patched soon.

If you have any other Windows 10-related issues you can check for the solution in our Windows 10 Fix section.

For any more suggestions and questions, go to the comments section below. You’ll find us there and we’ll continue the talk


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in August 2015 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

  • Nice solution tips! My Windows 10 computer also had similar problems, I had checked the possibilities which will make this problem. However, I couldn’t have a idea. Finally, I tried to update the display driver for my Windows 10 computer with a tool named Driver Talent. This problem was fixed. Amazing !