World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Errors, Crashes, Freezes and Fixes

By   /   Dec 7, 2010

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm has been released today. With fanbase of over over 12 million, one would expect a tough day for the Blizzard Support team with random game issues. Refer to the troubleshooting guide below if you are experiencing any issues in installing or playing the game.

World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Troubleshooting Guide

Info extracted from Blizzard Support Pages and Forums

1# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Installation Error 2, 5, 38 and Error 121, Error 124, Error 131, Error 132, and Error 134 Fix
Read the detailed instructions on this thread to resolve these errors.

2# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Stuck at Loading Screen
If the default server (or one that you select) has a queue, canceling and picking another server will leave you stuck at “Logging into game server”. If this happens to you, cancel out all the way to the login screen and log back in.

3# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Display Driver Crash
Follow the steps below for detailed instructions to resolve this issue.

  • Completely exit World of Warcraft.
  • Go into the World of Warcraft folder.
  • Go into the WTF folder.
  • Open the file with Wordpad/Notepad.
  • Add this to it: SET fixedfunction “1”.
  • Save the file.
  • Close the file and folder(s).
  • Log onto the game and it will run fine.

4# Error 132 0x85100084 “Fatal Exception”

  • Right click on the World of Warcraft icon on your desktop, select Properties. If you see the -opengl at the end of the line in the Target field, take it off.
  • Next, go into the World of Warcraft folder.
  • Go into the WTF folder.
  • Open the file with Wordpad/Notepad.
  • If you have this: SET gxAPI “opengl”
  • Delete it and save the file.
  • Update video card drivers, and start the game. Hopefully will run fine.

5# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Loading Screen Crash

6# Crashing in New Areas – Cataclysm
Refer to World of Warcraft Crashes in certain zones under general troubleshooting guide.

7# Can’t Login – World of Warcraft: Cataclysm – Can’t Join Server
Forward your ports for World of Warcraft. See the instructions in Step 4 – World of Warcraft Connection Fix under general troubleshooting guide.

8# Lost Connection
Refer to instructions in Step 4 – World of Warcraft Connection Fix under general troubleshooting guide.

9# Graphic Errors, and Bugs ATI Fix
If you are on ATI video card and experiencing weird and buggy graphics. You can try the following workaround:
1. Right click on your desktop, open up Catalyst Control Center.
2. If you do not have Advanced options to begin with, make that happen.
3. In the upper right hand corner of the window, go to Options.
4. Go down to Preferences.
5. Select Restore Factory Defaults.
6. Try playing the game again using your usual settings.

10# Unable to open WoW Update
If you come across this issue, revert and repair the game. See the detailed instructions in ‘How to Revert back to Previous Patch’ in ‘Can’t Apply the Patch’ under World of Warcraft General troubleshooting guide below.

11# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm “Failed to initinalize WoW.mfil”
This error is caused by two common reasons.
1. Another launcher is already running in the background.

  • Hit Ctrl+alt+del and go to Task Manager.
  • End any processes associated to WoW such as Launcher.exe.
  • Try the patch again.

2. You are unable to download the mfil file due to something like a proxy, a public connection, or a security program.

  • Go to the Control Panel and open up Internet Options.
  • Click on the Connections tab.
  • Click the button called “LAN Settings”
  • Uncheck all of the options on that screen.
  • Then try again.

If that does not work, go back in and check the box to “Automatically Detect Settings” and test once more.

12# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Error #132 Fix
Remove all addons.

13# ATI Textures Bugged – Fix
On ATI cards if some of the Catalyst Control Center settings get changed, it results in bugged textures. Try setting them back to default or use something like Driver Sweeper to uninstall your video drivers for a clean reinstall.

14# World of Warcraft: Cataclysm Disabled Graphic Options
If you are unable to raise the detail level in your graphic options.
1. Look for these lines in your file (located in World of Warcraft\WTF).

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SET gxAPI “opengl”
SET fixedfunction “1”

2. If either is there, delete them. You’ll need to use an editor like Notepad or Wordpad to do that.
3. If the opengl one is there, also check the desktop shortcut.
4. Right click it, select properties, then look at the Target line. If it has -opengl on the end, remove it.
5. Now try the game again.

World of Warcraft: General Troubleshooting Guide

Info extracted from Blizzard Support Pages and Forums

1# Can’t Apply the Patch (3.x to 4.x)
Make sure you have run the Blizzard downloader with administrator privileges. Or right click on your World of Warcraft shorcut, and run it as administrator. Make sure you have disabled your antivirus and firewall.

Or have added the downloader and game in the exceptions list. If you are still having issue revert back to the previous patch, and try updating again.

Or you can use repair utility in World of Warcraft which allows the patch to run properly. It can be found in the World of Warcraft folder, or your Start Menu -> World of Warcraft.

How to Revert back to the previous Patch
(Only valid for patching 3.x to 4.x, not 4.x to anything else) Reverting the game to a previous version may also assist with the troubleshooting process.  In order to revert the game to a previous version, please try the following steps:
1.  Open your World of Warcraft directory (This is commonly located at C:\Program files\World of Warcraft)
2.  Open the folder called “Data”
3.  Delete the Patch.MPQ, Patch-2.MPQ and Patch-3.MPQ file
4.  Run the repair.exe utility found in the World of Warcraft directory
5.  Click the button “Reset and Check Files”
6.  The repair utility will say, “World of Warcraft is seriously damaged and will need to be reverted to an earlier version.  After it has been reverted you may need to patch up to continue playing.”
7.  Once the repair utility has completed, you will need to reapply the patch to enter the game. If you are having problems with the patch actually updating the game, this is most commonly corrected by uninstalling the game, then reinstalling, and trying the patch procedure again with no other programs running.

2# World of Warcraft Crashes in Certain Zones
Make sure you meet the minimum requirements of the game, and you are not on Integrated Graphics Chipset.  If you indeed using the onboard video card, try this.
Typing the in-game command “/console fixedFunction 1” into your chat pane may help resolve this by disabling some of the new features that unsupported integrated graphic chipsets cannot handle. The command “/console fixedFunction 0” will re-enable those features.

Note. Disabling these features can severely reduce performance on higher-end supported video cards that will handle the new graphical features normally. This in-game command should only be attempted as a work around for systems with unsupported integrated graphic chipsets.

Fix World of Warcraft Crashes, Freezes and Errors

If the crash issue persists, please try the steps in each section below until you find the one that resolves your specific issue.

Step 1. Removing Temporary Files
With the game closed try moving or deleting your WTF, CACHE, and INTERFACE folders out of your World of Warcraft directory. These are temporary cache files that will be recreated by the game the next time you start the game and log into a character. However back up these folders as they also contain your macros and other key bindings.

Note. By moving or deleting these folders you will remove UI mods and many saved setting preferences you may have added.

Step 2. Updating Drivers
Make sure you have the latest video, sound, network card and motherboard drivers.

Step 3. OpenGL and -nosound
Try running the game in openGL mode and without sound. Command line options appended to the desktop shortcut will not take effect unless “Show Launcher” is enabled at the login screen.
1. Right click on the World of Warcraft icon.
2. Click Properties.
3. In the Target field, add ‘-opengl’ and ‘-nosound’ after the last quotation mark.

Example: “C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Launcher.exe” -opengl -nosound

4. Click OK
5. Launch the game with your modified executable.

You can also try running the game in a window by adding “-windowed” (without quotations) to the line as explained above. You can also enter all three options at the same time, but make sure that there is a space between each of them.

Step 4. Background Applications
An application running on your operating system may be causing the conflict, so close applications before running the game.

Step 5. Reinstallation and Memory Test
Try uninstalling the game, and then deleting the entire install folder from the hard drive. Then, reinstall the game and try it again. Sometimes fully and simply re-establishing the data files this way can resolve general game issues.

If you have Windows Vista or Windows 7, these already has a Memory (RAM) Diagnostic Tool that you can use. Using this tool will require a reboot so please save any documents you have open.

  • Click Start.
  • In the Start Search field type in Memory and hit Enter.
  • The first option you see should say Memory Diagnostic Tool.
  • Run the Memory Diagnostic Tool – A window will pop up asking you if you want to reboot and check for problems not or check for problems the next time you restart.
  • If you choose to restart now, Vista will reboot into the memory diagnostic utility.

3# Can’t Apply Patch World of Warcraft Patch on Mac ?
This issue commonly arises due to permission corruption. If you problems applying the new patch, try the following workarounds.

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Repair File Permission Settings
1. Navigate to /Applications/Utilities/ and open Disk Utility.
2. Select the hard drive the game is installed on.
3. Select the First Aid option.
4. Click on the Repair Disk Permissions button.

Repair Directory Procedure
1. Shut down the computer.
2. Power up holding Cmd (Apple) +s until you get a black screen with white type.
3. At the cursor please type the following: /sbin/fsck -f -y and press return.

Note. Some of the procedures will look like they are frozen, but are actually taking a long time i.e. checking hierarchy.

4. If anything had to be repaired, repeat step 3. Do this until it says “The Volume appears to be OK.”
5. Once things are repaired type exit and press return
6. Computer will boot into Mac OS

Reset Permissions on your WoW Folder
1. Select the World of WarCraft folder.
2. Press Command + I.
3. In the World of Warcraft Info box, go to the Sharing & Permissions (Ownership & Permissions if on 10.4) section.
4. Click on the lock and unlock it, entering your admin password when prompted.
5. Make sure you have Read & Write permissions.
6. Click on the Burst icon (cog wheel) and select Apply to enclosed items.

Note. If using Mac OS 10.4.11, just click on the Apply to Enclosed items button. (No cog wheel)

Remove Temporary Files and Repair
Check under Errors, Crashes, Freezes Step 1. You can do that by following the steps below.
1. Navigate to /Applications/World of WarCraft/
2. Delete or move the WTF, Cache and Interface folders.
3. Run the World of WarCraft repair tool in /Applications/World of WarCraft/
4. Launch WoW.

4# World of Warcraft Connection Problems Fix
Resolve your connection issues in the game by following the steps below.

Step 1. Server Status Check
Check Realm status page, as well as the Service Status Forum and check the status of the game servers before continuing moving on to step 2.

Step 2. IP Release/Renew, Flush DNS
You may need to release and renew your IP address as well as flush your DNS cache to resolve your connection issue. Follow the instructions below to do this.

Windows Vista/Windows 7
Windows Vista requires that you run the command prompt (DOS shell) in Administrator Mode to perform these functions. To start the DOS shell in admin mode:
1. Go to Start/Programs/Accessories and locate the “Command Prompt” shortcut.
2. Right click Command Prompt shortcut and select “Run as Administrator” from the drop down menu.
3. Continue with the Windows XP/2000/98 directions below at step 2.

Windows XP/2000
1. Go to Start then Run and type the word “cmd” (without quotation marks) in the Run box. A DOS window should open on screen.
2. Type: “ipconfig /release” (without quotation marks) in the DOS window.
3. Wait a few seconds for a reply that the IP address has been released.
4. Type: “ipconfig /renew” (without quotation marks) in the DOS window.
5. Wait a few seconds for a reply that the IP address has been re-established.
6. Type: “ipconfig /flushdns” (without quotation marks) in the DOS window.
7. Close the DOS window and attempt to make a connection.

Apple OS-X
1. Open the Network Status menu: Apple>System Preferences>Network>Network Status.
2. Select “Built-in Ethernet” from the Network Status menu and click “Configure”.
3. Click “Renew DHCP Lease”. This process may take a few minutes.
4. Close the Network Status window.
5. To flush the DNS cache, open the Terminal. (Go > Utilities > Terminal)
6. For Leopard (10.5), type:

dscacheutil -flushcache

7. For Tiger (10.4) and Panther (10.3), type:

lookupd -flushcache

Step 3. Hard Reset
Turn off your modem/router and computer. Restart after 60 seconds. It may help resolve connection issues.

Step 4. Port Forwarding
If you are using any type of firewall, router, or you are sharing your internet connection between multiple computers, you may need to set your system up to allow access to the game servers.

The firewall or router will need to allow unrestricted communication on TCP and UDP Port number 3724, 6112, 6113, 6114 and 4000. World of Warcraft game client utilizes TCP while the Voice Chat features use UDP.

For further help you can refer to Blizzard Network Assistance.

Step 5. Update Check
Update drivers for your router, modem and install operating system updates.

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Step 6. Diagnose Your Internet Connection
Running a Trace Route can help identify where the connection problems are occurring.

How to Run the Trace Route Command

Windows XP/2000
1. Click Start and then Run.
2. Type “command” and press Enter.
3. In the command window, type ‘tracert > C:\tracert.txt’ (without the quotes) and press the Enter key.

Windows Vista and 7
1. Click Start and in the “Start Search” field type “command” or “cmd”.
2. Right click on the CMD icon and select Run as – Administrator to start the Command window.
3. In the Command window, type ‘tracert > C:\tracert.txt’ (without the quotes) and press the Enter key.

A file will be created on your C: drive called tracert.txt that contains your trace route information. Email your tracert.txt to along with the other steps you have tried in regards to your connection issue for further assistance.

World of Warcraft Graphics Errors, and Distortions
If you are experience different graphics bugs, and errors. You can try the follow steps to resolve these.

Step 1. DirectX and Video Driver Updates
World of Warcraft: Cataclysm requires the latest version of DirectX. You can make sure you have the latest version of DirectX from Microsoft’s official website.

Also, it is important that your video drivers are up-to-date and compatible with the latest version of DirectX. Outdated or incompatible video drivers can cause a variety of video and gameplay issues.

Note. If your computer is a laptop, you may need to obtain your drivers from the laptop manufacturer directly. Please contact your system manufacturer for detailed instructions on updating your video drivers.

Step 2. Changing Display Settings in
To resolve these problems turn Specularity and Pixel Shaders to “0”.

1. Open the World of Warcraft folder on your hard drive. This is normally at C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft
2. Open the WTF folder.
3. Open the file using a text editor, like Wordpad.
4. Change SET specular “1” to SET specular “0”
5. Change SET pixelShaders “1” to SET pixelShaders “0”
6. Save the file and start the game again.

Running the game in ‘OpenGL’ mode may cause certain graphical effects not to display properly. Switching the rendering mode of the game from ‘OpenGL’ to ‘Direct 3D’ can resolve some display issues.

1. Open the World of Warcraft folder on your hard drive.
2. Open the WTF folder.
3. Open the file using a text editor, like Notepad.
4. Change SET gxApi “opengl” to SET gxApi “direct3d”
5. Save the file and start the game again.

Also, some video cards may require you to disable the ‘UI Acceleration’ feature.

1. Open the World of Warcraft folder on your hard drive.
2. Open the WTF folder.
3. Open the file using a text editor, like Notepad.
4. Change Set UIFaster “x” where x equals one of the following numbers:

0 – This turns off all UI acceleration
1 – For Internal Use Only – DO NOT USE!
2 – Enables partial UI acceleration only.
3 – Enables all UI acceleration.

5. Save the file and start the game again.

It is recommended to first try option 2 in order to correct the problem. If this does not solve the issue, then use option 0 to disable all UI Acceleration.

Step 3. Motherboard Chipset Drivers
Download and install the latest chipset drivers for your motherboard. Only recommended for advanced users.

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Step 4. Overheating and overclocking
Revert back your system to factory settings, if its overclocking is coming at the expense of overheating. Too much overheating can cause all sorts of graphical bugs.

5# World of Warcraft ERROR #131 (0x85100083)
The installation is corrupt, either re-install the game or change the media you installed the game from. If you have downloaded the game digitally, re-download it. If you have the retail version, replace the disk if its repeatedly giving the same error.

6# World of Warcraft Blue Screen Error “IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL” (“STOP 0x000000D1”)
This error arise due to bad drivers conflicting with the application. So, updating your drivers will most probably resolve it. You can use the steps below to find out which device is causing these errors.
1. Click Start.
2. Highlight Programs.
3. Highlight World of Warcraft without clicking on it.
4. Right click on the World of Warcraft icon.
5. Click Properties.
6. In the Target field add -opengl after the quotation mark

Example: “C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Launcher.exe” -opengl

7. Click OK.
8. Try the game now with the modified executable.

You can also try running the game in a window by adding -windowed to the line as explained above. You can also put all three options on at the same time, just make sure there is a space between them.

You can also make these changes through the file:
1. Open the World of Warcraft folder on your hard drive.
2. Open the WTF folder.
3. Open the file using a text editor, like Notepad.

If you do not see any of the lines below you can add them manually:

OpenGL Mode
SET gxAPI “OpenGL”

No Sound
SET Sound_EnableAllSound “0”

Windowed Mode
SET gxWindow “1”

7# World of Warcraft NV4DSP.DLL Error
Update your video card drivers.

Caused by driver or hardware failure. Mostly updating the device drivers will fix the issue.

9# World of Warcraft Black Screen Fix
1. Make sure you have latest video card drivers.
2. Try playing in the open GL mode. If it plays well, it means you need to re-install your DirectX drivers. You can setup the game in Open GL mode by following the instructions below.
1. Click Start.
2. Highlight Programs.
3. Highlight World of Warcraft without clicking on it.
4. Right click on the World of Warcraft icon.
5. Click Properties.
6. In the Target field add -opengl after the quotation mark

Example: “C:\Program Files\World of Warcraft\Launcher.exe” -opengl

7. Click OK.
8. Launch the game with modified executable.

10# World of Warcraft Error #121- Version Mismatch
Use the repair utility to revert back to the previous patch, and then update the game to the latest patch. Check how to revert back to previous patch for detailed instructions.

11# World of Warcraft “Error #0”
Video card related issue, can be resolved by updating your video card drivers.

12# Game Crashes with Voice Chat Enabled
If you are facing this issue, follow the instructions below to fix it.
1. Open the main menu by clicking the Windows button (Start button) on screen, or by pressing the Windows key on your keyboard.
2. Click on Control Panel to open it.
3. Click on Hardware & Sound.
4. Click on Manage Audio devices.
5. Click on the recording tab at the top of the new window.
6. Double click on the listing for the Microphone that you have installed in your system (if you have multiple microphone, repeat these steps for each).
7. Click the advanced tab at the top of the Microphone properties window.
8. Change the default format to 16bit, 44100 Hz (Cd Quality) or lower. You can select this for either 1 or 2 channels depending on your microphone setup. The important part is the 44100 Hz.
9. Click Ok, and Restart the game and test it once more.

If you face any other issue, let us know. We will try to help you out.