Common Fixes for Tech Problems with Skyrim

The Elder Scrolls V: SkyrimHaving a few problems with getting Skyrim to play properly? Here are a few common problems, and a few common fixes for those problems. While none of these fixes should seriously mess up your computer, keep in mind that it’s possible that they will. Proceed at your own risk.

“TESV.exe” stops working causing Skyrim to crash while launching

Open up Control Panel -> Hardware and Sound -> Sound
Click on your default sound device, click properties and then choose the Advanced Tab.
Change the default sound format to 44.1Khz 16-bit if it is not already. Click “Ok.”
Open up Elder Scrolls Skyrim and see if that fixes the error.

Skyrim’s first dungeon crashes computer

This problem is experienced by a lot of users who are crashing while playing Skyrim. Unfortunately, you will have to wait for a patch on this one, unless a work around arises.

Skyrim install fails/cannot install

A lot of users are experiencing a crash and/or failure while installing Elder Scrolls V Skyrim. This is usually due to to a problem with the Microsoft Visual C++ Package. This can generally can be resolved by re-installing the Microsoft Visual C++ Package.

Note: Sometimes if you have both the x86 and x64 version there can be some problems. For most cases we recommend x86.

Skyrim crashes upon opening/loading

Reinstall DirectX. Make sure you install the latest version.
Update your video drivers. The easiest way is to just have Steam do it for you.
Try the sound fix listed above.
Try playing in window mode and using just one monitor if you have several.
Verify Skyrim’s integrity by using Steam’s integrity check function.

Mouse is inverted

This can be a mouse acceleration problem.
Just navigate to your SkyrimPrefs.ini file in steam. Change its bMouseAcceleration=1 value to “bMouseAcceleration=0″ (no quotes).

Skyrim graphics are glitching

Update your video card drivers. The easiest way is to have Steam do it for you.
Turn off V-Sync.
Verify that your video card is not overheating, this can can commonly be done from your video card’s drivers, or with a number of other utility programs.
Run a memorytest program to verify your ram is ok.
Disable SLI/Crossfire to see if it fixes your problem. Download the latest profile for them
Elder Scrolls V Skyrim : Forcing Off V-Sync

Keep in mind that if graphical glitches or “artifacts” are persistent with most of the games you play, this could be a sign that your video card is either overheating or going bad.

V-sync lowers game performance

Navigate to your SkyrimPrefs.ini file in steam. Change its “iPresentInterval=1″ value to “iPresentInterval=0″ (no quotes). You can find it by going to your

Stream Directory -> Steamapps -> common -> skyrim -> Skyrim

Mouse is invisible

Check your game options to see if Xbox Controls are enabled or disabled. Disable them.

Audio/sound don’t work

If you are using a 7.1 or 5.1 sound system / PC speaker setup, then set your configuration through Windows to 5.1 or 2.1 respectively. If this doesn’t help then undo the changes.

Conversely, if you just have a normal speaker setup, then you’ll want to try going to Start -> Run -> DXDIAG -> DirectX Features. Try lowering your Hardware Sound Acceleration and Sample Rate Conversion Quality, as this may fix the problem.


Update: Bethesda is hard at work on some patches to fix as many bugs as they can. Pete Hines, VP of PR and Marketing at Bethesda, has tweeted a string of messages about the patches including: “We will fix as much as we can for your platform. I don’t know if it will fix “your” bug. Takes a while to test/fix/regress. Hang in there.” and “Patches/updates take a little time. We can’t turn it around quite that fast. It’s been three days. Calm down. We’re working on it.”

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