User contributed common solutions

Common Problems, Solutions and Ideas to Consider


Microsoft Resources

Game Not Starting / Incorrect Operation

Restart Steam.

Having problems; restart steam. Not seeing game updates or hotfixes? Restart steam.

If steam has been running awhile, has been downloading for hours, or you have been playing other games or have been cruising the store pages or discussion boards, and you now want to start a critical gaming session? Why not restart steam; it isn’t going to hurt.

Unlike most windows applications, the tittlebar button at the upper right that appears as an X does not close steam. It only closes the window, not the application. The steam icon appears in the notification area or the hidden notification icon area. You must choose the exit steam menu item to close the steam application.

To start steam, use a desktop shortcut if you have one. On Windows 7 or earlier, you can also bring up the start menu and go to “all programs”. From there, select the steam folder and then click the steam application.

Note: you may have also chosen to participate in beta versions of the steam client (check the steam settings under account). The beta version could be causing issues.

Verify Grim Dawn Game Files Using Steam.

When you install a game, steam downloads all game files automatically, and by default, automatically downloads updates when it notices them. Sometimes, something goes wrong and a few files are missing or corrupted. If an update occurred, maybe part of the update is missing.

Open up the steam window. Select Library. Find Grim Dawn and bring up the context menu by right clicking. Choose Properties. Select the Local Files tab and click the Verify Integrity of Game Cache button. This will bring up a dialog box that shows progress. It can take some time. If steam finds that there are any missing files or files that don’t match its master copy, it will queue them for download. If this occurs, wait for the files to be downloaded before starting grim dawn.

Install Recent Video Card and Sound drivers.

If your drivers are more than a year (or maybe 6 months) old, you should install more recent drivers. Typically, video card drivers are more important than sound drivers. Sometimes an old video card can benefit by continuing to use an old but stable driver. Games utilize more features of a video card in more demanding ways than the desktop and office applications. Sometimes the latest driver or a beta driver will have a problem and one will have to uninstall that driver and install a slightly older version.

Download official drivers from reputable locations. For video cards, this is usually Nvidia, ATI, or Intel’s website. For sound cards, go to the company’s website. For integrated audio, go to the website of your laptop, prebuilt computer, or motherboard. If you know what company or chip is used to provide integrated sound, you can also use a generic driver provided by that company – this driver may be more up to date, but in some cases, may be missing some special customizations what allow microphones, speakers, or audio ports to work as intended on your computer. In general, I don’t recommend using windows update to install video or audio drivers.

Install/reinstall Dependencies

Games sometimes require other software components that need to be installed. Normally, steam downloads these when you install the game and then installs them the first time you run the game.

Sometimes things can go wrong with the installation of the dependencies. You may be able to resolve the problem by manually installing these dependencies. If not, error messages might appear that would be useful.

First, why not verify the game files. In fact, why not verify the game files before starting the first time?
Verifying the files make sure the install files are there and correct.

To manually install the game files for Grim Dawn, you should use an administrator account. Using the windows (file) Explorer, go to the install directory for Grim Dawn. This is usually, C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Grim Dawn. The subdirectory, _CommonRedist contains the dependencies. Install the following items:

vcredist_x86.exe in subdirectory _CommonRedist\vcredist\2010
vcredist_x86.exe in subdirectory _CommonRedist\vcredist\2012
DXSETUP.exe      in subdirectory _CommonRedist\DirectX\Jun2010

If the installer detects that the item is already installed, it may ask you to either repair or cancel. If you hit repair, you may want to check for windows updates.

Are You Current with Windows/Microsoft Update?

Manually check for updates. Go to the control panel and bring up the windows update. If you receive updates for windows only, you should consider also receiving update for other Microsoft products. The dialog box indicates that you can receive updates for other Microsoft products and has a link to learn more.

Install critical and important updates. Install optional “updates” if those are updates or fixes to windows components or Microsoft applications that you already have and are not some extra stuff that you don’t want.

If you have downloaded and installed a bunch of updates, reboot. If the update was only an update to Microsoft security essentials virus updates, you can probably skip the boot.

A person reported an issue while playing Grim Dawn (related sound and multiple sound devices) on a system installed with Windows 7 without Service Pack 1. Installing Service Pack 1 for Windows 7 resolved the issue.

Run The Grim Dawn Repair Tool

The Repair.exe utility could solve your crashes on launch.

It is normally located at:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn

When Needed, Create Directories for Grim Dawn Settings and Save Data.

If you have tried other suggestions to allow grim dawn to start and it still does not, and there are no obvious error messages or crashes to report, then look at the following, especially if a window is being generated and it is black or appears to be the wrong size or at an incorrect location on screen.

Go to your user’s Document (or My Documents) folder. Look for a “My Games” subdirectory. Then look for the “Grim Dawn” subdirectory in that directory and finally the “Settings” subdirectory in the grim dawn directory.

If these some of directories don’t exist, create them under your user’s Documents (or My Documents) folder. You should end up with “My Games\Grim Dawn\Settings”.

If you created some of these directories, try to start Grim Dawn again.

If the directories already existed or after trying to start grim dawn again, take note if there is an options.txt in the Settings subdirectory described above.

You may need a boot strap options.txt. Download and place it in the Settings directory. Try to start Grim Dawn.

If you needed to perform any of these actions, the problem should be reported. A DxDiag.txt file would be helpful.

Antivirus/Firewall/Security Product Issues.

If the security product has a way to temporarily disable it or a way to temporarily disable realtime protections, that might be an easy was to check if it is an issue before entering trying to enter exclusions.

Antivirus/firewawall/security products interfaces often have a way to exclude the applications/game executables and game data save areas from realtime protections. Excluding the game install from periodic virus scans and scans when game downloads/updates occur might also be necessary. Your security product might not be able to provide separate exclusion settings for real-time protections and antivirus/anti-malware scans.

It is possible that you will have to try entering exclusions and then test the game. If exclusions do not resolve the problem, it is best to remove them.

Note: once you change settings in your antivirus to resolve the issue, it is recommended that you verify the integrity of the Grim Dawn’s game cache by using options within Steam.

Antivirus programs often delete suspect files or move them to a quarantine location. Security products can fail to restore files even when the user indicates they are to be allowed. Verifying the game cache will detect any missing files and download them again.

Firewalls may, of course, block network communications to and from Grim Dawn. When Grim Dawn supports multiplayer, one may need to check to see if the settings are correct.

Grim Dawn (B19) does not appear to be compatible with Microsoft Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit 5.0. (EMET 5.0)

Windows User Account Control UAC

Under normal conditions, Grim Dawn installs and runs fine with Windows User Account Control on the highest setting.

It has been noticed that Grim Dawn can be sensitive to interruption while loading. If for some unknown reason UAC felt the need to put up its prompt while Grim Dawn is running or loading, it could impact Grim Dawn and cause a hang or crash. If the situation does occur, it may be caused by some other software or utilities on your system.

Avoid Extraneous Events During the Initial Load

During the alpha, it was noticed that Grim Dawn can be sensitive to extraneous events during the initial load sequences. The game could hang or crash. Don’t click on the window, or desktop or attempt to adjust other application windows when Grim Dawn is loading. People have also indicated that using keyboard multimedia controls, such as those that adjust the volume of audio output, can cause problems as well. It has been noticed that the problems are more prevalent when using windows 8.1.

Alt Tabbing Away – Loss of Full Screen Focus

If the game is running in full screen mode, every time it loses focus, it loses exclusive access to the graphics card/GPU and many of the resources it has prepared or sent to the GPU. The game must recognize the device was lost and cleanup any bookkeeping on the resources it lost. When it regains access, it has to load and prepare the resources it needs again. Theoretically, it should all work but bugs can cause crashes or memory leaks.

When it does work fine, it is possible that performance could be better. The reason lies within the clearing out of resources when the device is lost and the reload and repreparation of the ones needed at this moment in the game.

The user can switch to the desktop or other windows in several ways and other programs and utilities could steal focus or somehow temporarily cause focus to be lost.

Overclocking the CPU or GPU

You knew it was risky, right? Errors caused by overclocking and overheating can be unpredictable and inconsistent. Heat isn’t the only problem.

When you overclock and things seem to work, you may forget that you did it or start to think it cannot be the problem.

Does anyone have a clue but you? No, unless they guess you overclocked something.

Performance Problems

Check Grim Dawn Requirements

OS: Windows XP / Windows Vista / Windows 7 / Windows 8
Processor: x86 compatible 2.0GHz or faster processor
Memory: 1 GB RAM
Graphics: 512MB NVIDIA GeForce 6800 series or ATI Radeon X800 series or better
DirectX: Version 9.0c
Hard Drive: 5 GB available space
Sound Card: DirectX 9.0c compatible 16-bit sound card

OS: Windows 7
Processor: x86 compatible 3.0GHz or faster processor
Memory: 2 GB RAM
Graphics: 1.5GB NVIDIA GeForce 500 series or ATI Radeon 6000 series or better
DirectX: Version 11
Hard Drive: 5 GB available space

If your monitor has resolution significantly greater than 1920×1080, you may need a more powerful graphics card or you may need to reduce in-game video options or reduce the resolution the game plays at.

Developers have indicated that if you can run Titan Quest or Titan Quest Immortal Throne, you should be able to run Grim Dawn with medium settings. Some intense fights, however, may experience greater slowdowns than Titan Quest. The general statement was aimed at the final release.

Install Recent Graphics and Sound Drivers

As mentioned in Game Not Starting / Incorrect Operation.

Alpha And Beta

During the alpha and beta period, users may experience bugs or optimization issues that significantly impact performance.

Having hardware that exceeds the stated requirements can keep the framerate at a comfortable level.

Bugs or nonoptimal algorithms may cause the framerate to degrade over time. This is an issue that can be reported but the information provided by you may not be sufficient to find and correct the issue quickly.

By completely quitting and restarting the game at convenient intervals, one can often avoid the worst of such issues in the meantime. The procedure may also reduce the occurrence of other bugs or crashes. During the alpha and beta periods bugs and problems should be reported.


If you are using a laptop that has more than one video adapter device/GPU, use options available to indicate that the Grim Dawn should run on the more powerful GPU.

If your laptop contains an Nvidia GPU, create a profile for Grim Dawn via the procedure in the “Create a Game / 3d Application Profile to Set Performance Options” below and be sure to set the option “Select the preferred graphics processor for this program” to “High Performance NVIDIA processor”

When running the game on a laptop, try running the laptop on AC power to see if that improves performance.

Laptops may also have control panels or taskbar notification area controls to change power management modes for the system in general (including CPU, disk…)

Also look at creating a game profile in the video adapter (Nvidia or ATI/AMD “Catalyst”) control panel to set any further performance options.

Desktop context menu options such as Run With Graphics Processor may not have an effect if the game is started indirectly through a program such as Steam and/or via a game (configuration) launcher program.

Also see: Create a NVidia Game Profile for Grim Dawn

Note: As of Grim Dawn, Build 20 (B20), the in-game options menu has been enhanced with the ability to select output graphics render devices. Depending on your system, this may provide the essential control needed. Creating a game profile, may be still necessary for some systems and/or may provide some additional benefits or controls.

Power Options Windows Control Panel

Microsoft Windows has a Power Options control panel. You can choose a different power plan such as High Performance when running Grim Dawn. You can also change a plan’s settings. The control panel can be used even on desktops where power management might not be as great an issue.

Create a Game / 3d Application Profile to Set Performance Options

It is possible that the GPU is staying in low power mode or switching power modes while playing.

Go to the control panel for your (Nvidia, ATI/AMD) video adapter. Add a game or 3d application profile for Grim Dawn.

For Nvidia, this performed in the Program Settings tab of Manage 3D Settings. Click to add a new profile.

Grim Dawn is normally installed under “C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\steamapps\common\Grim Dawn”.

If you can’t remember where you installed Grim Dawn, start up steam, and right click Grim Dawn in the Library and open up properties. In the Local Files Tab, choose Browse Local Files. An explorer window will open that will identify the location.

Then, for Nvidia, select the Power Management Mode feature and select Prefer Maximum Performance.

Also see Create a NVidia Game Profile for Grim Dawn

Lower In-Game Video Options

You may be able to achieve good performance by lowering various combinations of options or disabling certain features. If you are having trouble deciding where to start, use the following as a suggestion.

Use the native resolution of your monitor in full screen mode unless you have a very high resolution monitor and know via other games a resolution to use.

If you have a very high resolution monitor and know you need to reduce your resolution but don’t know where to start, using 1920×1080 (or 1920×1200 if your monitor has a 16:10 aspect ratio) would be reasonable, if your monitor or TV supports that resolution. Otherwise, consider using a supported resolution approximately 2/3 of the horizontal and 2/3 of the vertical resolution. If outputting to a (non-CRT) TV, one should probably use progressive rather than interlaced output mode.

Turn off Antialiasing. Choose a low level of anisotropic filtering (2x-4x).

Turn off triple buffering and vsync.

If that doesn’t yield good performance and if not as important as other options, turn off depth of field and/or post processing effects.

If that doesn’t yield good performance change other settings to medium.

If that is not ok, then turn off post processing and depth of field.

If that is still not ok, consider changing the options to low. At this point, you may want to lower or turn off anisotropic filtering.

Finally consider lowering the resolution the game plays at. This might make the game look significantly worse depending on your monitor and the resolution you choose.

When you have achieved acceptable performance, one can change some of the options to higher levels. If one hasn’t lowered the resolution on a monitor at resolution ~ 1920×1200 or lower, start by increasing the texture quality.

Turning off general options, Target Outline and Camera Shake could help deal with low FPS situations.

Free System Resources and Stop Multitasking

Close other programs, browsers, video players, chats…

Clear as many warning or pending actions by windows update, antivirus or the action center as possible.

Close any unnecessary task bar / notification area items that you can.

Try using the Indexing Options control panel to exclude the “My Games” directory and subdirectories for your userid (if not for all users).

Outside Questions - Possible Clues

Do you have multiple monitors? Have you plugged in or removed a monitor recently?

Are you running at your monitor’s preferred resolution?

Have you asked windows to enlarge items on screen or perform color correction?

Have you used the graphics adapter control panel to change scaling, desktop appearance, or default 3d graphics options? Try resetting them.

Disk Maintenance

You can perform some of the following actions to help maintain disk performance.

Use chkdsk to check for filesystem errors (usually caused by removing power before shutting down) and attempt to correct them. Click you system drive (normally C:), right click to bring up the context menu and select properties. Then select the tools tab and then press the check now button under error checking. See that automatically correct errors is checked and scan for bad sectors is not and hit start. A dialog box will say it cannot do it now; click to schedule a disk check at next boot. Reboot and let the check run. After that, check the other disks on your system especially if you use them to store games or steam. Normally, you will not have to reboot.

Use cleanmgr to clean off temporary files, logs and other data that you probably don’t need. Go to the control panel and open up Performance Information and Tools. Select Open Disk Cleanup. Choose your disks one at a time starting with your system disk (usually C:). Choose the items you want to clean and start the process. You can click clean up system files; this gives you more options to clean. Each type of item to clean has a description. Most items can be cleaned with minimal issues. There are a couple of items in windows 8.1 that relate to windows update and drivers that are best left unchecked – the tool tips are useful.

Then defragment your disks. Clearing out temporary files and internet browser caches help speed up the process. Right click you a drive in the windows file explorer to bring up the context menu and select properties. Then select the tools tab and then press the Defragment Now button under Defragmentation. Defrag the system drive and any disks you have steam or games on. Don’t defragment solid state drives or flash disks. If you open up an administrator command prompt you can invoke defrag with the /h /u /v options against the drive(s) you want.

Why not do this before you install a large game?

It is not recommended to defragment a solid state disk.

General Windows Operation

TweakGuides has some System Guides that can help users understand how to operate the windows operating system.

There are some guides that include some material on how to use Nvidia and ATI/AMD driver control panels – these have not been updated recently but have information and explanation that new users will find helpful.

The Nvidia GeForce Tweak Guide has been updated recently.

Tuning and Tweaks

Tweaks may or may not provide a benefit and could remove functionality you find useful.

  • Turn off Enhance Pointer Precision in the mouse control panel. Pointer trails could be a problem.

  • Check out the Ease of Access Center. Decide if you want do disable any key combinations that invoke accessibility options. (Region and Language, keyboard and languages, change keyboards also has some key combos, and ink input methods).

  • Do you have many programs or taskbar items starting when you boot? Turn the ones you don’t need off. (resolution requires some expertise)

  • If you are using windows 8.1, have you looked at[/li] and

  • ]Have you considered uninstalling the gadget platform and tablet component windows features on Windows 7?

  • Look at control panel->sound->playback->default device->properties->advanced->default format. Have you considered changing to a 44100 hz sample rate while playing grim dawn?
    Note: As of Grim Dawn, Build 20 (B20), the in-game options menu has been enhanced with the ability to select the audio output device. Adjust which device you look at accordingly.
    If you are using HDMI audio or a digital audio output, the connected audio device would need to support the 44100 sample rate. In addition you probably have to go to the control panel, open up properties for the digital/hdmi output and go to Supported Formats to enable the 44.1 kHz sample rate; if you do not, it may be converted.

  • Do you need steam community features for this game? If not, turn it off,

  • Close the steam window before playing a game. (This doesn’t cause steam to exit)

  • On Windows 7, have you tried running Grim Dawn using an Aero Theme and a Windows 7 Basic Theme? Is System control panel -> Advanced System Settings -> Performance -> Enable Desktop Composition option on or off?

One user has reported that Grim Dawn unexpectedly starts in stereoscopic 3D mode. In that case, the game was rendered using the Anaglyph 3D (red/cyan) technique.

Options in the Nvidia control panel did not indicate that stereoscopic 3D was enabled.

Proposed Workaround:

At this time, we don’t know exactly what causes the issue. If you perform these steps, you will lose stereoscopic 3D support and will lose NVidia settings made previously. You will also lose GeForce Experience functionality.

Go to the Programs and Features control panel. Uninstall the Nvidia graphics card driver and NVidia graphics related items. At the time of writing, the following list shows the items to be concerned with. I believe the correct way to uninstall these programs, is to uninstall the graphics driver last.

  • NVIDIA GeForce Experience
  • NVIDIA PhysX System Software
  • NVIDIA 3D Vision Controller Driver
  • NVIDIA 3D Vision Driver
  • NVIDIA HD Audio Driver
  • NVIDIA Virtual Audio
  • NVIDIA Graphics Driver

If you own a computer with an Nvidia motherboard or chipset, do not uninstall any software for other parts of your system (including the storage system).

Download a recent driver, preferably a WHQL certified one. Start the installation and choose Custom (Advanced) installation.

Choose the following items to install.

  • Graphics Driver
  • PhysX System Software

If you use HDMI audio, also select

  • HD Audio Driver

At the current time, we don’t think it is causing the issue.

Then check the option to perform a clean install.

Proceed with the installation. When the installation is complete, reboot.

Test the game.

Note you will lose any/all custom NVidia game profiles. You will have to recreate them.

Post any discussion about this solution on the (bug) thread in the history section. In fact, we want to know how many people have this problem.

Uninstalling and reinstalling GeForce drivers with all components should restore functionality lost by this procedure.

Note: As of Grim Dawn, Build 20 (B20), the in-game options menu has been enhanced with the ability to select output graphics render devices. Depending on your system, this may provide the essential control needed in many cases. Creating a game profile, may be still necessary for some systems and/or may provide some additional benefits or controls.

Right click an empty place on the desktop to bring up the context menu and select the NVidia control panel.

If the menu item is not there, go to the control panel and bring up the NVidia control panel. If the control panel cannot be found, you may need to install NVidia drivers from the At this time, we do not recommend using windows update to install NVidia drivers.

Click manage 3D settings at the left and then select the program settings tab.

If you don’t already have a profile for Grim Dawn.exe, click the Add button.

If you have started Grim Dawn recently, the control panel might already know where the game executable is. If so, select it and hit add selected program.

If Grim Dawn was not in the list, hit the Browse button.

Find the Grim Dawn.exe executable and select it. The typical location is C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Grim Dawn. Hit the open button after selecting Grim Dawn.exe.

You can now change NVidia 3D graphics settings for Grim Dawn.

One option that might be useful is the Power management mode. Selecting Prefer maximum performance may be beneficial. It is possible that power saving features could be keeping the GPU at a low power state or could cause it to transition back and forth between power saving and performance modes while playing.

If you own a laptop that has a low power integrated GPU and a more powerful NVidia GPU, you may be able to select which GPU is used when running the game.

(this picture was manufactured)

Nvidia game profiles have settings that may be similar to in-game video settings. Usually, it is recommended to try utilizing the in-game video settings first. Nvidia game profile settings typically override in-game settings. Nvidia setting overrides might have a different effect than the in-game setting.

(Note that the display of the option description can be a bit inconsistent)

Note: Settings in the Nvidia control panel could be a factor in any bug that occurs while playing the game. When reporting a bug, it can be important to include the options you changed.

I eyeball such things on my own computer but when I saw this on a starbound forum, I thought it might help someone.

Proposed Fix

Note: Parts of this fix involve using the windows registry editor. While using the editor, take care, so that you do not unintentionally or incorrectly make changes. The correct operation of Windows is dependent on many values contained in the registry.

  1. Close the game and exit steam. Note that you should choose steam’s exit menu item because steam’s X tittlebar button only closes the window, not the application.
  2. Go to your Steam install folder. This is usually C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam. Find the Steam.exe executable and bring up its properties by bringing up the context menu via a right mouse click and then selecting the properties menu item. Choose the compatibility tab. Uncheck all compatibility options, including run as administrator.
  3. Do the same for the Grim Dawn.exe executable. Usually, Grim Dawn is installed in the directory C:\Program Files (x86)\Steam\SteamApps\common\Grim Dawn
  4. Start the registry editor, regedit.exe. On Windows 7, click the start button and type regedit and hit enter in the start menu search box. If you are using windows XP, open the start menu and click the Run… menu option. From there, type regedit and hit enter. If you are using some other version of windows, note that regedit.exe typically exists in the SystemDrive \Windows directory.
  5. Go to key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers and delete any entries for Steam or Grim Dawn executables.
  6. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers and do the same thing. Delete any entries for Steam or Grim Dawn executables.
  7. If you are running a x64 bit version of windows, check if HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\AppCompatFlags\Layers exists. If so, delete any entries for Steam or Grim Dawn executables.
  8. Close regedit and recheck that no compatibility options are shown for Steam or Grim Dawn as in step 2.
  9. Start Steam and launch the game to see if the performance has improved. It is possible that you may have to reboot to see an effect.

Note: once you change settings in your antivirus to resolve the issue, it is recommended that you verify the integrity of the Grim Dawn’s game cache by using options within Steam. Open up Steam, right click the Grim Dawn game entry in your game library. Select properties and then the local files tab. Click the verify the game cache button and wait for it to finish. It is possible that you will need to be connected to the internet.

Note that antivirus programs may remove suspected files from their install location and place them in a quarantine location, very quickly, or may even intercept them as they are downloaded from steam. The game will not run or will encounter problems if files are missing from its installation. Performing a virus scan may not report files that have already been quarantined.

To find out where Grim Dawn is installed via Steam, perform the following steps. Open up Steam, right click the Grim Dawn game entry in your game library. Select properties and then the local files tab. Click the browse local files button. A windows (file) explorer window will open. Normally the path is shown near the top of the window. You may also right click a file, such as Grim Dawn.exe, and choose properties. The general tab shows the location of the file.

General Notes

Note:A virus or trojan “signature” is a loose metaphor for a data pattern within the code/files or a pattern of behavior while executing. It is not the same as (cryptographically) signed executables.

Antivirus vendors have an incentive to quickly discover viruses/malware and provide high detection methods before users machines are compromised. It is a complex situation in which mistakes can be made and antivirus vendor policy decisions may provide both benefits and negative consequences to various users. Antivirus programs have an ongoing problem with false positives. At least some users will need to do something at some times to resolve issues.

Antivirus, antimalware and antispyware program can conflict. Gamers should not install more than one without checking that they are compatible with each other. Such programs often have various (kinds of) runtime performance penalties. Check reviews for low impact (for real-time check costs as opposed to the cost or speed of disk scanning). The installation of multiple products increases the likelihood a significant impact. Sometimes a product does not uninstall properly.

Also note that some (other) nifty utilities/tools/applications may trigger real-time checks by antivirus programs that incur a performance cost. (They do things that are checked and they are running in the background, have hooked into the system, or will hook into applications/processes that run.)

Gamers should also fresh install a new version of windows rather than upgrading windows. Then, install a recent version of the antivirus program that supports the new version of windows. Also, upgrading windows with third party antivirus products installed is risky.

An antimalware program with real-time protections is a significant addition to the system. Be leery of old versions of products as they may not be the primary focus of ongoing bug and compatability fixes. Also consider that a product install that has undergone, perhaps several, upgrades to new versions, may not be as in good a shape as a fresh install with the latest version.

Once a system is compromised by a virus or malware, it is possible that the system will not be able to detect the virus/malware regardless of what you may attempt. This would require sophistication on the part of the virus/malware. It is in the interest of the virus/malware to remain undetected but it’s ability to may or may not sufficient depending on the methods and tools you use.

Correctly, safely, and completely removing virus or malware after it has infected the system may not be possible – even if it is a market feature of your antivirus product. For gamers, a clean install of windows, including the reformat and/or repartitioning the disks should be considered. If you use windows install media to reformat or repartition the disks, you may want to reboot the install media after the cleaning phase. Check your disk’s partition alignment requirements and remember to only quick format solid state disks. Quick format install disks again, during the normal install phase. Delete applications on other disks that you will reinstall. Scan saved files or those existing on other disks before using them.
(If you have windows install media that checks for upgrade requirements, you may need to temporarily install the prior version of windows after cleaning. Upgrade checks are performed early, so one can quick format the drive to effect a clean install during the install of the final version of windows).

Antivirus reviews: with can check and scan files against several virus products and present the results.

The Microsoft SysInternals web site contains some advanced utilites (Process Explorer and SigCheck) that integrate with virustotal services. They can also be used to show and verify executables that are cryptographically signed. You may also want to use the System File Checker tool (SFC.exe) that is included with windows.

What’s it like to be on the front lines:

Open source antivirus with windows support: (that also has Windows Antivirus - Immunet 3.0, powered by ClamAV).

Users and forum members have become aware of the problem with false positives and most have been able to resolve issues with some effort. The following information has not been updated recently:

Current VirusTotal Status

Grim Dawn.exe v0.2.3.4 (b17)

BullGuard security product

One user indicated that a BullGuard security product did not allow Grim Dawn to enter full screen mode.

(StrikerShane 11/2013)

The user changed a setting within the security product to allow Grim Dawn to enter full screen mode.


One user indicated that Grim Dawn.exe (B16) was
infected with: Trojan.Fakealert.58481 and deleted the file.

The user let BitDefender restore the file. The choice was saved.

Another user has reported that he cannot run the game, because the executable is vanishing, however, uninstalling BitDefender did not resolve the issue. It is unclear what is causing the problem. It could be a virus, malware or remnants of a previously installed antivirus product.

Users may have been able to resolve issues with BitDefender 2014 easier than BitDefender 2013.


One user has indicated that false positives occur when using AVG and BLUR.

Resolution steps were not specified. It was not confirmed that the issue was experienced with Grim Dawn.


The user told F-Secure to allow the application, but the game did not start. Notice within the security product indicated:

“Harmful file was not downloaded. Computer security removed a harmful file that it found in your network traffic, you can continue to use your computer normally. Infection name: Exploit:W32/CVE-2010-1088.C.”

The user was initially able to get around the issue by using DeepGuard’s compatibility mode, but later, the product had issue with Grim Dawn despite the setting.

F-Secure also doesn’t like the anonymous reporting.

The user was able to resolve the issue by excluding the Steam folder completely as far as F-Secure scanning it for viruses/spyware/malware. Here are the steps if anyone else is having a problem with it.

  1. Open the F-Secure program and go to Computer Security
  2. Open settings in computer security
  3. Click on Virus and Spyware Scanning
  4. In the Virus and Spyware section, click on the link on the bottom to exclude certain folders
  5. Click on the Object tab in the middle and add the necessary folder.

Game is now launching properly again.

VirusTotal indicates that Grim Dawn.exe (B16) is no longer detected by F-Secure (update 20140211).

A user has reported that if he pauses the game and the computer goes into sleep mode, Grim Dawn crashes when the computer resumes sleep and the application is made active.

The user’s version of Windows and hardware configuration are unknown.

It is unknown if the game is running in windowed or full-screen mode.

Proposed Workaround:

One workaround is to disable sleep mode or change the timeout value in your windows Power Plan.

If you are using a version of Windows similar to Windows 7, perform the following steps. Navigate to Control Panel > Power Options > select “Change plan settings” next to the currently selected power plan (usually either “Balanced (recommended)” or “Power Saver”), then change the option for “Put the computer to sleep:” to “Never”.

This will cause the computer to not go to sleep or take longer to do so. This could negatively affect battery life on a portable computer.

Alternatively, one could temporarily select a different power plan (such as High Performance) while playing. Check the plan’s sleep setting and change it if necessary. It is possible that some portable computers may utilize too much power and/or have thermal issues while the High Performance plan is in effect.

One could try temporarily changing your current Power Plan’s sleep setting.

Possible Solutions:

Resuming from sleep can require cooperation from Windows, device drivers, and the hardware devices themselves. Sleep and powersaving features have been a source of various issues for Windows as noticed by viewing Microsoft knowlegebase articles.

With specific information, maybe one could identify an existing windows fix could resolve the issue. Given the variety the hardware available, and the fact that drivers that are largely outside of Microsoft’s control, you may have to live with the issue.

Carefully upgrading all drivers on your system is probably the best thing to start with.

If you have a fancy screen saver, disable it.

Another solution is for the application or a utility to temporarily indicate that the system should remain active. It is also possible that the game must respond to some condition and does not handle the situation correctly.

(Also, in general, it has been noticed that hibernation can create various issues with windows. Hibernation can be disabled and enabled by the powercfg command.)