What can we do if the computer freezes when playing games? Every time you jump into your computer games after a busy day of work, your computer freezes for no reason, all sound stops, no inputs work, even though you’ve launched the game just for a few minutes.

We truly know how it feels when this issue occurs and don’t worry, we’re here to help. Try the methods in this post and you’ll sort it out.

  1. Restart your computer
  2. Lower the in-game settings
  3. Turn off background programs
  4. Update your graphics driver
  5. Run the Memory Diagnostic Tool
  6. Run the System File Checker
  7. Delete temporary files
  8. Increase Virtual Memory
  9. Perform a system restore

Before we start, please make sure that your computer meets the minimum system requirements of the game if it’s the first time you playing it. Then, let’s go through the following tips in detail.

1. Restart your computer

Although restarting your computer is a very basic method, it’s the first thing you should do so far when your computer freezes.

A restart can simply flush the temporary files and shut down some background processes, which might be interfering with your gameplay. However, after you restart your PC, you should try disabling some programs that run automatically at startup.

To do so:

  1. On your keyboard, press Ctrl, Shift, and Esc together to open Task Manager.
  2. From the top menu bar of Task Manager, select the Startup tab. Then select the programs which you don’t want them to run automatically, and click the Disable button at the bottom right.
  3. Restart your computer again.

If the problem persists after you try this method, please move on to the next one.

2. Lower the in-game settings

Another reason for your game freezing issue is the inconsistent frame rates in-game settings. High image quality and high-resolution textures might push your hardware too hard, so try to lower them down to medium or low.

After that, check if the problem persists. If so, move on to the next tip.

3. Turn off background programs

Too many background programs can consume too much of your CPU or RAM, and thus cause your game or the entire computer system to freeze.

To resolve this, follow the steps below to open Task Manager and disable certain background programs:

  1. On your keyboard, press Ctrl, Shift, and Esc together to open Task Manager.
  2. Click More details if it shows at the bottom to reveal background Windows processes.
  3. Click Options in the top menu bar, then select Always On Top.
  4. Once you’ve identified any program as non-critical and you’ve saved what you were working on it, then select it and click End Task at the bottom right.

Please note that closing any process related to your system can make your computer unstable.

After that, check if the issue is resolved. If not, read on to see what else we can do.

4. Update your graphics driver

When your computer freezes when playing games, one of the first things you should do is to update your graphics card driver since an up-to-date graphics driver always ensures the best gaming performance and fewer bugs.

To update your display card driver, here’s what you can do (please note that the following screenshots are taken on Windows 11, but the instructions work on Windows 10 as well):

  1. On your keyboard, press the Windows key and X at the same time, select Device Manager.
  2. Double-click to expand the category Display adapters. Then right-click your graphic card driver and click Update driver (the name of the device can be different on your computer).
  3. Then click Search automatically for updated driver software.
  4. Wait for Windows to find the latest driver available for you.
  5. When the driver update is done, restart your computer for the change to take effect.
  6. Then check and see if the problem is fixed.

If Windows says that it’s already found the latest driver for you, so no newer drivers are found, then you should consider updating your graphics driver in a different way with the help of Driver Techie.

Its ever-growing driver database allows you to always have access to the latest device drivers that you need. More importantly, Driver Techie simplifies the driver update process, so all it takes is just 3 clicks (for Pro users), and all your drivers are updated.

To use Driver Techie to find you the latest drivers:

  1. Download and install Driver Techie, then launch it.
  2. Click Scan Now.
  3. After the scan, select all the drivers you need to update and click Update All. Then all your drivers will be updated automatically without you having to do anything else.

Please note that Update All is available for Pro subscribers only, otherwise, you can only manually update the driver one at a time. To see how to manually update the drivers one by one, please check this post.

If you’re a Pro user of Driver Techie, and need our technical support to help with the PC freezing problem when playing games, please feel free to contact <support@drivertechie.com>.

If the problem persists, move on to the next method.

5. Run the Memory Diagnostic Tool

If a physical memory issue is suspected to cause the game freezing issue, you can use the memory diagnostic tool to scan and fix it.

To run a memory check, follow these steps:

  1. On your keyboard, press the Windows key and R together to invoke the Run prompt. Type mdsched.exe and press Enter to launch the Memory Diagnostic Tool.
  2. If you’re prompted to decide whether to restart your computer or not, save all the important work on your PC, then click Restart now and check for problems (recommended).
  3. Upon reboot, perform a basic scan, or go for the Advanced options like ‘Test mix’ or ‘Pass count’. Press F10 to start the test.

The memory diagnostic tool will scan and fix the bad sectors in your memory module, resolving the PC freezing issue when playing games on your device. If it turns out that no memory errors are detected, or the diagnostic tool fails to resolve the issue, please refer to the next fix.

6. Run the System File Checker

If there are any corrupted system files or integrity violations that cause your computer to freeze when playing games, you can try using the built-in system repair tool, SFC, to fix them. Follow the steps below to run an SFC scan:

Caution: Do not interrupt the SFC scan until the verification is complete, or it may break your system.
  1. On your keyboard, press the Windows key and R together to invoke the Run prompt. Type cmd and press ShiftCtrl and Enter together to open the command prompt as an administrator.
  2. Type each of the following commands and hit Enter, then wait until the scanning completes.
    sfc/ scannow
    DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
    DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth
    DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth
  3. Once complete, restart your computer for changes to take effect.

If the problem persists, kindly move on to the next fix.

7. Delete temporary files

Sometimes the built-up temporary files can cause your computer to lag or freeze. Try deleting the temporary files to fix the computer freezing issue when playing games. (You’ll need administrative permission to proceed with this step.) To do so:

  1. On your keyboard, press the Windows key and R together to invoke the Run prompt. Type %temp% and hit Enter.
  2. In the come-up folder, select all the subfolders by pressing the Ctrl key and A together, and then select Delete.
  3. Again, invoke the Run prompt and type temp, and then hit Enter. (Click Continue when you’re prompted to get permission to access the folder.)
  4. In the come-up folder, select all the subfolders by pressing the Ctrl key and A together, and then select Delete.
  5. Once cleared, go to your Desktop and right-click the Recycle Bin, and select Empty Recycle Bin.
  6. Restart your computer.

By doing so, all of the temporary files on your PC will be cleared out. If this fails to resolve the freezing issue, move on to the next tip.

8. Increase Virtual Memory

Although 8GB of virtual memory is enough for most gamers, it’s better to add more if you’re playing a heavy game. Therefore, your computer will get enough virtual memory to temporarily save files.

To increase the size of virtual memory:

  1. In the Search box, type View advanced system settingsand hit Enter.
  2. Under the Advanced tab, click the Settings… button in the category Performance.
  3. Once the Performance Options page pops up, click the Advanced tab, and then click the Change… button.
  4. On the Virtual Memory page, uncheck the Automatically manage paging file size for all drivers checkbox. Select Custom size, and input the Initial size and the Maximum size as you wish. Once done, click the Set button and then the OK button.
  5. Click OK if you’re prompted to restart your computer.
  6. Back to the Performance Options page, click the Apply button, and exit the settings page.
  7. Restart your computer for changes to take effect.

Check if the problem persists. If so, move on to the next method.

9. Perform a system restore

If it happens that you’ve created a system point when everything is going well on your PC, you can try to perform a system restore to roll back to the previous version. Otherwise, doing a repair reinstallation of Windows 10 is also a good choice.

To perform a system restore:

  1. In the Search box, type control panel and select Control Panel (Desktop app) from the results.
  2. Search Control Panel for Recovery, and select Recovery > Open System Restore Next.

  3. Choose the restore point, and then select Next > Finish.

Please note that doing a system restore won’t affect your personal files, but it will remove apps, drivers, and updates installed after the restore point was made. If you’ve never created a restore before, see how to do a repair reinstallation as below.

To do a repair reinstallation of Windows 10:

To resolve the freezing issue when playing games, you can use the in-place upgrade tool. It’s a process of reinstalling Windows without touching any of your applications or personal files.

To start with, you’ll have to download an ISO file of Windows 10 on your computer. To do so:

  1. Download the Media Creation Tool in this guide: http://aka.ms/DownloadW10ISO
  2. Make sure that you’re signed in or have the administrator rights to proceed with the repair install, all peripheral devices are unplugged (except for your mouse, keyboard, and LAN cable), and any third-party anti-virus program is shut down.
  3. In the download path location, double-click to run the MediaCreationTool.exe file.
  4. If you’re prompted to confirm to Use Account Control, click Yes.
  5. When the Windows 10 Setup screen opens, read the license terms and click Accept.
  6. Select Upgrade this PC now and then click the Next button.
  7. After a few moments, you’ll be ready to install. Click Install to proceed. (It’s recommended not to change the default settings so that you won’t lose any important files.)
  8. Wait until the installation is complete.
  9. Once done, sign in to your account to start the new system.

Hopefully, your computer will go back to normal and the freezing issue will be resolved. Enjoy your gameplay and please feel free to leave a comment if you have any questions or any other methods that worked for this issue. More importantly, if you’re a Pro user of Driver Techie, and need our technical support, please feel free to contact <support@drivertechie.com>.