How to fix the missing ddraw.dll error in Windows 10/11

by Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things... read more
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  • The ddraw.dll error can occur from various causes, like malware infection or corrupted Registry.
  • When ddraw.dll message pops-up in Windows 10, make sure to scan your computer.
  • To easily fix the ddraw.dll error or other DLL issue, you can use a third-party software solution.
  • If nothing works for you, restoring the system to a previous date can solve the issue.
how to solve ddraw dll error

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Ddraw.dll is a Dynamic-Link Library file that DirectX needs for 2D graphics. It is a shared system file that is essential for multimedia software.

If that file ever gets deleted or corrupted, you’re bound to encounter some software issues.

Missing ddraw.dll errors are among the more common DLL issues that return an error message stating, This application can’t start because ddraw.dll is missing from your computer.

Another error message is DDRaw.dll_Unloaded that can occur in your browser when playing a game.

If you ever encounter the above message or one along similar lines, some of your multimedia programs aren’t going to run.

These ddraw.dll errors can be due to malware, corrupted or invalid registry entries, outdated DirectX version, corrupted system files or a deleted ddraw.dll file.

As such, there are numerous potential fixes for the missing ddraw error. These are a few resolutions that will probably fix the missing ddraw.dll error in Windows 10.

How do I fix ddraw.dll is missing on Windows 10? 

1. Run a third-party DLL fixer

Restoro is a great tool that can help you address various computer issues in a timely manner. You can use it for DLL errors, BSoD problems, or when your computer often freezes.

Restoro repair

Restoro is a reliable third-party DLL fixer which uses a built-in automated system and an online library full of functional DLLs to replace and repair any files that might be corrupted or damaged on your PC.

All you need to do to resolve your PC’s problems is to launch it, and simply follow the on-screen instructions to start the process, as everything else is covered by the software’s automated processes.

This is how you can fix registry errors using Restoro:

  1. Download and install Restoro.
  2. Launch the software.
  3. Wait for it to scan your PC for any stability issues and possible malware.
  4. Press Start Repair.
  5. Restart your PC for all the changes to take effect.

After this process is completed your PC will be as good as new, and you will no longer have to deal with BSoD errors, slow response times, or other similar issues.

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Disclaimer: This program needs to be upgraded from the free version in order to perform some specific actions.

2. Run a System File Checker scan

  1. Press Windows + S to open Windows Search bar.
  2. Type cmd.bcrypt.dll windows 10
  3. Right-click on Command Prompt and run it as an administrator.
  4. Next, enter the command below  and press the Return key:
    DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth
  5. Enter sfc /scannow and press Return to initiate the System File Checker scan.
  6. The SFC scan could take up to half an hour. Restart Windows if the WRP does repair some files.

Note: If malware has indeed corrupted the ddraw file, the System File Checker might also repair it. The tool will scan system files and replace any corrupted ones with a cached copy. 

3. Scan for malware

DLL files are a frequent target for malware. As such, malware might be responsible for the missing ddraw.dll error. To purge malware from Windows, add an anti-virus utility to the OS.

Eset Antivirus is one of our top picks for security software because it offers great security against all threats, including malware, ransomware, and phishing attacks. It has a large and constantly updated threat database that ensures a very high detection rate.

Expert Tip: Some PC issues are hard to tackle, especially when it comes to corrupted repositories or missing Windows files. If you are having troubles fixing an error, your system may be partially broken. We recommend installing Restoro, a tool that will scan your machine and identify what the fault is.
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This antivirus has a pretty small footprint and you can leave it open and allow you to protect your device in real-time against intruders.

To scan your PC for malware, just open ESET Antivirus, click on the Computer scan button in the sidebar and then select Scan your computer. Wait for the process to complete, let it remove any threat found, and restart your PC.

4. Re-register the ddraw file

  1. First, press the Cortana button on the Windows 10 taskbar.
  2. Enter cmd in Cortana’s search box.
  3. Right-click Command Prompt and select Run as administrator to open it.cmd
  4. Enter regsvr32 /u ddraw.dll in the Prompt’s window, and press the Return key.
  5. Then input regsvr32 ddraw.dll and press Enter to re-register the DLL.

Note: Regsvr32 is another Windows tool that can come in handy for fixing DLL errors. It might be the case that the ddraw file has broken registry references, which regsvr32 can fix.

5. Scan the registry

  1. Download CCleaner’s installer to Windows.
  2. Open CCleaner’s installer to add the utility software to Windows.
  3. Click the CCleaner icon to open the software’s window.
  4. Click Registry to open CCleaner’s registry cleaner shown directly below.ccleaner
  5. Note that the registry cleaner includes a Missing Shared DLLs check box. Select Missing Shared DLLs along with all the other checkboxes for the most thorough scan.
  6. First, click the Scan for Issues option, which will scan for registry issues.
  7. Then press the Fix selected issues button to repair the registry entries listed.
  8. A dialog box opens that asks to back up the registry. Click Yes to create a backup, choose a folder for the file and press the Save button.backup registry
  9. Then press the Fix All Selected Issues button to give further confirmation to repair registry.

Note: The registry can often be the source of DLL file errors. It might be the case that there are invalid registry entries for ddraw.dll. You can scan and repair registry entries with third-party utility software such as CCleaner. 

6. Reinstall the software

  1. Open Run by pressing the Win key + R hotkey.
  2. Enter appwiz.cpl in Run and press Enter to open the Control Panel tab shown directly below.uninstall a program
  3. Select the program that’s returning the DLL error.
  4. Press the Uninstall button to remove the program.
  5. Click Yes on the Programs and Features dialog box to confirm you’re sure about removing the software.
  6. Thereafter, reinstall the program with its setup wizard.uninstall a program

Note: If one specific program is returning the missing ddraw.dll error, reinstalling the software could fix the issue. The missing DLL error message also suggests that you reinstall the program. 

7. Save a new ddraw.dll to Windows

download dll

The error message states that the ddraw.dll is missing, so it might indeed be the case that the file has been deleted.

The easy way to check is to enter ddraw.dll in the Cortana search box, which should find the file as shown in the snapshot directly below. If the file has been erased, you can download another copy.

ddraw.dll is one of the more reputable websites for DLL files. The site includes a repository of DLL files for 64 and 32-bit Windows platforms. You can save a new ddraw.dll to Windows from that site. 

After you have saved and unzipped the file, move the ddraw.dll to the folder:


You might also need to register the ddraw file by entering regsvr32 ddraw.dll in the Command Prompt.

8. Rollback Windows

  1. Enter rstrui in Run and click OK to open the window directly below.system restore
  2. Click Next to open a list of restore points.
  3. Select a restore point that predates the missing ddraw error.
  4. To check what software will be lost after restoring Windows, press the Scan for affected programs button. That option will open the window below which shows you software added after the selected restore point.system restore
  5. Press the Next button, and click the Finish and Yes options to confirm your selected system restore point.

Note: System Restore provides one of the best fixes for DLL errors. This will undo changes made to system files and roll the registry settings back to a selected restore point date. 

Those are some of the best remedies for the missing ddraw.dll issue. Aside from those resolutions, DLL fixer software such as DLL Suite, DLL Tool, and DLL-files Fixer might also resolve the issue. 

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