How to Fix: Display Driver has Stopped Responding and has Recovered

How to Fix: Display Driver has Stopped Responding and has Recovered

/ James Masterson

Sometimes our incredibly complex computers can run into problems related to the coordination of internal tasks. This can happen no matter what kind of operating system you use. This error will state that the “Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered” and can occur when Windows believes that your graphics card (or its driver) has taken too much time to do its job.

More technically a Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered error indicates that your graphics card caused a Windows Timeout Detection and Recovery Error and Windows attempted a reset, without success. It could have been the result of a highly unusual circumstance and might not happen again after you reboot your computer.

If it does happen again, or if you wish to take proactive steps to prevent it from happening again, you can try the following steps to ensure that your graphics card responds in a timely fashion.

Reasons for Display Driver Stopped Responding and Has Recovered Error

There are several reasons why you might experience a “Display Driver Stopped Responding and Has Recovered” error. Most of the time it happens when you are running a software or playing games.

When there are too many programs, software and applications that are running at the same time on your PC. You need to make sure to turn off unnecessary apps or programs.
When the display driver is not updated, missing, or corrupted. When available, make sure to update your display driver.
When the GPU has overheated. An overheated GPU will cause issues when running your PC.
When your graphics driver is taking more time to load graphics into your monitor.
When you have a defective or old graphics card. Make sure to get a newer graphics driver or at least make sure that it can support the kind of applications or games that you want to use.

Fix #1: Running too Many Applications could cause a “Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered Error”

Exit all applications except the one you were running when the error occurred. Help your display driver and graphics driver perform better by completely closing the unnecessary applications. Here is how you can co

If there are applications that have been minimized, hover over the icon in the taskbar at the bottom (minimized applications are signified with underlining of the icon in Windows 10).

close out applications

Step 1:

Right Click on Each Underlined Icon

Step 2:

Then, Click “Close Window

Save any work that you want to save as the window closes (it will ask you if you wish to save it)

If the error does not occur again, you may have temporarily corrected the problem. However, it may return if you again run and minimize multiple applications as you did before.

If you need to have multiple applications running and/or minimized at the same time, then you might also consider one of the following, more permanent, fixes below.

Fix #2: You May be Running a Highly Graphics-Intensive Application

Realistic games can make heavy demands on your graphics drivers. If the demand gets too much, you could get a Display Driver Stopped Responding and has a Recovered Error. Try closing the most graphics-oriented application that you are currently running, to see if the error no longer occurs. If it does, it is likely that you need to upgrade your display driver card to support your choice of games.

Engineering and scientific software can also be highly graphics-intensive and will require a lot of work from your display drivers. Even if they don’t display graphics images (some use the much faster graphics processor to process mathematical calculations).

If this works, but you still need to use the graphics-intensive application, then you might consider one of the following methods to fix it more permanently.

See Also: Geforce Experience Won’t Open

Fix #3: Try Changing the Windows Visual Effects settings

Another reason why you might get a display driver stopped responding error is because you have an incorrect Visual Effect settings. You can also try disabling some of the Windows visual effects to reduce the demands on your graphics card:

Step 1:

Click Start. Then click Settings.

Step 2:

Look for the search box on the dialog box that pops up and then type: Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows, and then click on the same phrase in the results box below.

Adjust the appearance and performance of Windows

Step 3:

Click on the Visual Effects Tab

Click on the Visual Effects Tab

Step 4:

Click the circle next to Adjust for Best Performance

If you don’t like the effects of this setting, you could try checking some of the features below to arrive at a custom configuration. Just remember that each one increases demand on the Graphics card again. Check if the display driver stopped working error is fixed.

Fix #4: Change Your Timeout Detection and Recovery Setting To Fix Display Driver Error

For a more technical fix for the Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered Error, check if your registry incorrectly done. For example, your Nvidia display driver might take time to load graphics to your monitor. This might trip the timeout detection settings in your registry.

Change the time-out detection setting in your registry so that Windows gives the graphics card more time before it triggers this error. Since this setting is typically set as default, a new configuration needs to be added to the Registry as follows.

DANGER: Improper modifications to your Registry can permanently and severely damage your Windows operating system. You could lose all of your work and all of your files. Have this step done by a professional unless you are qualified to perform it. Always back up your Registry before making such a change especially after a Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered error.

Step 1:

Exit all Windows applications.

Step 2:

Click on Start and look for the “Search” box:

Windows Search Box

Step 3:

Enter “regedit” in the Search box. A search will be performed as you type.

Step 4:

Find regedit.exe in the search results and Double-Click on it to bring up the Registry Editor:

registry editor

Step 5:

Find the Graphics Drivers registry subkey by clicking down the path given below:HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlGraphicsDrivers:


Step 6:

While GraphicsDrivers is highlighted (as shown), Click on the Edit menu and then on New.

Step 7:

Click on the correct choice (for your operating system) in the drop-down menu, as follows:

For 32 Bit Windows

  1. Select DWORD (32-bit) value.
  2. Type TdrDelay as the Name and then select Enter.
  3. Double-click TdrDelay and add 8 for the Value data and then select OK.

For 64 Bit Windows

  1. Select QWORD (64-bit) value.
  2. Type TdrDelay as the Name and then select Enter.
  3. Double-click TdrDelay and add 8 for the Value data and then select OK.

Step 8:

Double-click on the new “TdrDelay” entry and choose Modify to bring up the edit box:

modify tdrdelay

Step 9:

Close RegEdit and restart your computer.

Check if the display driver stopped working error is still happening. With an improved time out detection settings, this shouldn’t be a problem anymore. If so, try the next fix.

Fix #5: There may be a problem with Your Graphics Card

Update your display driver to the latest version, this is an extremely common cause of the dreaded Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered Error. This can happen when you have neglected to upgrade your card drivers for too long.

Step 1:

Determine the manufacturer of your graphics card and the model number.

  1. If your graphics card is a separate card installed into an expansion or upgrade socket, inspect the part of the card that you can see from outside (the monitor will likely be connected straight to it) for labels, stamping, or printing.
  2. Check the Windows Device Manager for information on the graphics card (AKA “display adapter” in the Device Manager)

Click on Start and type “Device Manager” into the search box:

device manager on the list

Step 2:

Click on “Device Manager” (subheading “Control Panel”) to start the device manager.

Step 3:

Click on “Display adapters” and inspect what is expanded below it. The make and model of your graphics card will often be given here.

display adapters

Step 4:

Visit the manufacturer’s website and look for “downloads” or “drivers” or “support.”

Step 5:

Download the latest driver for your graphics card.

Step 6:

Install the driver by double-clicking on the driver file downloaded. Follow all instructions given during the driver install. This should remove the Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered Error

If your installation fails read how to fix it here.

Fix #6: Your Graphics Card Hardware may be Failing

It does happen. A failing graphics card is not surprising since they often run at high temperatures and “crunches” an amazing amount of numbers during normal operation. A Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered Error message may indicate a burnout card. In this situation, you may have no choice but to replace your graphics card or upgrade to a new graphics card.

Hopefully, after reading this article, you have a better idea of what has caused your Display Driver Stopped Responding and has Recovered error message and how to fix it. If you still need help, drop us a comment below!

James Masterson
Meet the author

James is a software engineer and an information architect with keen attention to detail. He focuses on data-driven decisions, making sure that all decisions are backed up by reliable facts. His key interests include enhancing find-ability and usability of our content related to Windows 10; troubleshooting errors; and tech news. Robert is also enthusiastic about structured data, which he believes will help the world make better sense of their information in the digital age.