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Fix: Modern Warfare 2 Crashing On PC 2023

In this guide, we will be taking a look at how to fix Modern Warfare 2 crashing on PC. If you are having issues with the game and it keeps crashing to your desktop, freezing, or perhaps it just won’t load on your Windows 10/11 PC, then don’t panic.

I have been really excited to play the latest COD game. I did get to try the MW2 Beta which was great fun! And if you pre-ordered the game, we had early access to the campaign on PC. So we completed and enjoyed the game before the mayhem of the full game and online multiplayer was released!

But you are not here to read about the game you want to know how you can fix MW2 crashing and not working, so you can get back to playing. So below I have put together different methods you can do that should fix the game on your computer.

Why does MW2 keep crashing on PC?

There can be many things that cause COD MW2 to not work on your Windows computer and why it keeps crashing. The game may crash on startup, in the middle of a Match, or may give you an error and crash to the desktop saying “The application has unexpectedly stopped working“.

Call of Duty HQ Crash Handler message saying "The application has unexpectedly stopped working" in MW2.

If you have overclocked your hardware this could cause issues, especially if it has not been done correctly.

Or if one of the game files has become corrupted or missing then will cause many issues, and in fact, stop the game from loading. Or even having an out-of-date graphics card driver can cause errors.

How to fix MW2 crashing on PC

Below are the different methods for fixing Call of Duty MW2 crashing on startup and mid-game on a Windows 10 or Windows 11 PC or laptop. You will need to do each method until one fixes the issue you are having.

Related: MW2 lag & connection issues on PC.

Fix 1: System requirements

If your system does not meet the minimum requirements to play the game then you are going to have crashing on startup problems in MW2.

Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 PC minimum system requirements:

  • OS: Windows 7 / Windows 8 / Windows 10 (64-Bit)
  • CPU: Intel Core i3-4340 / AMD FX-6300
  • Memory: 8GB RAM
  • Storage: 80GB HDD space
  • Graphics card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 670 / GTX 1650 / AMD Radeon HD 7950
  • DirectX Version: DX11
  • Network: Broadband Internet connection

Fix 2: Update system

Next, ensure you have the latest Windows 10/11 updates installed on your computer.

Windows 10:

Right-click on the start menu icon and click on Settings
Go to Update and Security and then Check for updates

Windows 10 check for updates button.

Windows 11:

  • Right-click the start menu icon and go to Settings
  • Click on Windows update and then Check for updates
Windows Update check for updates button in Windows 11.

Fix 3: Graphics driver

Check if there is a new driver available for your AMD, Intel, or NVIDIA graphics card:

Fix 4: Update DirectX

Make sure you have the latest version of DirectX installed on your computer.

DirectX setup window saying installation complete.

Fix 5: Run as an admin

Try running the game with administrator privileges.

  • Go to the location where you installed the game right click on the cod.exe and select Run as administrator
Windows context menu when right clicking executable showing Run as administrator.

Fix 6: Turn off

Turn off your computer and leave it for 60 seconds. Then turn it back on again as it could just be your system/ Windows is having a funny moment.

Fix 7: Background programs

Close down all background programs/apps in case one of them is conflicting with MW2 and causing it to crash and not launch.

Fix 8: Unplug devices

If you have a headset, microphone, controller, USB, etc plugged into your computer unplug all of the devices except for your keyboard and mouse then launch the game as one of these could be causing MW2 to crash.

Fix 9: Clear DirectX cache

Deleting cache files can remove any files that may have become corrupted, so try clearing your DirectX Shader cache in Windows:

  • Open the start menu and search Disk Clean-up and select it
  • Now select your C: Drive
  • Deselect everything except DirectX Shader Cache > Press OK then Delete Files
Windows Disk Clean-up showing DirectX Shader Cache option selected.

Fix 10: Clear cache files

Remove NVIDIA cache files and also remove AMD cache files, depending on what graphics card you have.

Clear NVIDIA shader cache & files:

  • Open File Explorer > Type %localappdata% into the address bar > Press enter
  • Find the NVIDIA folder and open it
  • Open the DXCache folder first and Delete all the items in this folder
  • Go back and open the GLCache folder and Delete all the items in this folder
NVIDIA DXcache and GLcache folder locations
  • Now go back to the %localappdata% folder
  • Find the NVIDIA Corporation folder
  • Open the NV_Cache folder and Delete all the files in this folder
NVIDIA NV_Cache folder location in Windows

Clear AMD shader cache & files:

  • Open the AMD Software: Adrenaline Edition
  • Click on the Settings cog in the corner of the program
  • Select the Graphics tab and expand Advanced
  • Click on Perform Reset next to Reset Shader Cache
AMD graphics card reset and clear shader cache option in AMD Software: Adrenaline Edition program.

Fix 11: Restart the Shader cache

Within Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2, you can restart the shader cache files for the game. Doing this can resolve many problems including graphics issues:

  • Launch the game then go to Settings
  • Now select the Graphics tab and ensure you are on the Display tab
  • Click Restart Shaders Optimization

Fix 12: Overclock

If you have overclocked any of your system’s hardware then remove these overclock settings if you are able to and know how, as it could be causing the game to crash.

Fix 13: Profile settings

  • Open up File Explorer and go to your Documents Folder
  • Right-click on the Call of Duty folder and rename it to Call of DutyBK

Fix 14: Game files

If one of the game files has become corrupted or missing this will stop COD MW2 from launching and also cause it to crash. Luckily, we can check if there is a problem with one of the files.

Steam:

  • Open Steam and find MW2 in the list in your Library
  • Right-click on it and then go to Properties
  • Select Local files and then click on the “Verify integrity of game files” button
Verify integrity of game files in Steam.

Battle.net:

  • Open Battle.net app
  • Now select the Games tab and find MW2
  • Click the Settings cog then select Scan and Repair
  • Then Begin Scan
blizzard launcher scan and repair in game settings

Fix 15: Reinstall

If you are still having issues with the game and MW2 is crashing or restarting your PC, then try uninstalling the game and then reinstalling it again.

It may also be worth trying to install it onto a different hard drive, in case there is something wrong with the one you are currently using.

I hope one of the above methods helped fix the MW2 crashing PC issues, and you can now enjoy the game and smash out that campaign!

If you did like this guide and found it helpful then we are sure you would like our other gaming guides.

Check out our YouTube video here on Fix Modern Warfare 2 crashing & not launching on PC if you are getting stuck.

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Christian

Christian is a technical writer and IT Technician who loves anything to do with tech new or old, He specializes in fixing issues with computers. In his own time, he enjoys gaming, movies, and exercise.