FIX: WoW high latency and frequent disconnects

by Madalina Dinita
Madalina Dinita
Madalina Dinita
Windows & Software Expert
Madalina has been a Windows fan ever since she got her hands on her first Windows XP computer. She is interested in all things technology, especially emerging technologies... read more
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  • If you're having World of Warcraft latency issues, verify that your drivers are up to date.
  • Ensuring that the server you're using is working properly can help pinpoint the problem.
  • Many reported that removing or updating certain add-ons solved latency issues.
WOW high latency

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World of Warcraft is one of the most popular online multiplayer games in the world. Launched in 2004, WoW has millions of active players, ready to complete various quests.

Over the years, the game got several expansions that have enhanced almost every aspect of the gameplay and added new content.

However, certain issues are still present, and most notable are the network-related ones that cause your game to lag.

In today’s guide, we’re going to show you how to fix WoW latency issues as well as other network problems that might interfere with your gameplay sessions.

What happens when you experience latency?

Latency is the time that it takes for data from the server to reach the client. This applies especially to online games since high latency will negatively impact your gaming experience.

Latency workflow

This is also true for all types of web content and not just games, so if you’re having latency issues, certain websites might be slow to respond.

What is normal latency in World of Warcraft?

Any latency that is lower than 100ms is ideal for gaming, especially for MMORPGs such as WoW. The latency between 100 and 150ms might cause some minor issues, but most users won’t notice.

If it gets any higher, especially over 200ms you’ll begin to notice slowdowns and slower responses when performing certain actions. The game will be fully playable, but your response time will be affected.

How can I fix World of Warcraft latency issues?

1. Make sure that your drivers are up to date

  1. Visit your network adapter manufacturer’s website.
  2. Go to the Drivers section.
  3. Locate your model on the list and download the latest driver for it.
  4. Install the drivers and check if the problem is resolved.

If WoW keeps disconnecting, it’s rather likely that your network driver is the problem, so be sure to update it with a dedicated tool such as DriverFix.

2. Check the server status

  1. Visit the Realm Status page.
  2. Locate your server on the list.
  3. If the status is set to anything else other than a green check mark, that means there’s an issue with the server.

In case you’re having high latency in WoW but the Internet is fine, the issue is most likely server-related, so you’ll have to wait for the Blizzard to fix it.

3. Reset the game’s user interface

  1. Exit the game completely.
  2. Now uninstall all addon managers.
  3. Open the World of Warcraft installation directory.
  4. Now navigate to the folder of the version that is giving you this problem (_retail_, _classic_era_, or _classic_).
  5. You need to locate the following folders:
    • Cache
    • Interface
    • WTF
  6. Right-click the first folder and choose Rename from the menu.
  7. Change its name to CacheOld.
  8. Do the same for the remaining two directories.

Now start the game again and check if high ping in WoW still occurs. For more information, we suggest reading our guide on how to reset the World of Warcraft user interface.

In some cases, removing or updating certain addons can help, so we suggest you try that as well.

4. Use PowerShell

  1. Press Windows Key + X and choose PowerShell (Admin) from the menu.
  2. Now run the following commands:
    ipconfig /release
    ipconfig /renew
    ipconfig /flushdns
  3. Start the game and check if the issue is still there.

5. Install the latest Windows updates

  1. Press Windows Key + I to open the Settings app.
  2. Navigate to the Update & Security section.
  3. Click on Check for updates button.
  4. Windows will now install the missing updates.

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After updating your system, start the game and check if random disconnects in WoW still occur.

6. Optimize your connection

  1. If possible, try to use a wired connection instead of wireless since the latter is prone to higher latency.
  2. Close all applications that can access the Internet or download online content since they might interfere with your connection.
  3. Always use a broadband connection for gaming since it’s usually more stable.
  4. Optional: Turn off your modem for 30 seconds and turn it back on.

7. Disable proxies

  1. Press Windows Key + R, type inetcpl.cpl, and press Enter.
  2. Navigate to the Connections tab and select Never dial a connection if available.
  3. Click on the LAN settings button.
  4. Uncheck Use a proxy server for your LAN option.
  5. Optional: Try toggling Automatically detect settings checkbox if the previous option is already disabled.

8. Scan for malware/disable your antivirus

  1. Perform a system scan and check if there’s no malware on your PC.
  2. Press Windows Key + S and enter window security. Select Windows Security from the list of results.
     
  3. In the left pane, pick Virus & threat protection and select Manage settings.
  4. Disable Real-time protection.

Go back to the game and check if WoW latency issues are still there. In case the problem persists, you might want to consider using antivirus software for gaming PCs.

Keep in mind that this solution applies only to Windows Defender. If you’re using a different antivirus software the disabling process will be different.

What causes high latency in online games?

There are several factors that can cause latency, and the first one is the game server. If there are any issues with it, they will manifest in slowdowns.

Next up is the infrastructure between you and the server. In case there are problems between you and the server, you might experience network issues.

Your ISP can also cause slowdowns, and if you suspect that’s the problem, you might want to try using one of these gaming VPN applications.

Lastly, there’s your network equipment and your PC settings, and if certain services, apps, or ports are blocked by your firewall, you’ll have problems.

How can I find the latency of any server?

  1. Press Windows Key + X and select PowerShell (Admin).
  2. Now enter the following command: ping google.com
  3. You’ll now see the average latency for the server as well as the packet loss ratio.

Do keep in mind that this method works with any URL or IP address.

These are some of the solutions that you can try if you’re experiencing high ping in WoW. In most cases, the issue is server-related, so you can’t do much about it.

In case your PC is the problem, just make sure that no applications are interfering with the game, and adjust your settings accordingly.

Since you want the very best gaming experience, also take a look at these budget laptops for World of Warcraft. They include Solid State Drives that will shorten the loading times and have amazing displays.

Did you find a solution to this problem on your own? If so, feel free to share it with us in the comments section below.

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