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DirectX Management Tool \windows\system32\dxdiag.exe

Test, diagnose, and tweak DirectX drivers.

To Open

Command Prompt dxdiag


DirectX is the system that allows applications, usually games, to directly access graphic, audio, and input devices to maximize performance. Unless you’re experiencing a problem with DirectX or a program that uses DirectX, you should never need to use the DirectX Management Tool. If you do indeed encounter a problem, such as poor performance, an apparent glitch in a game, an error message, or some other compatibility problem, use the following steps to diagnose and treat the condition:

  1. DirectX relies on hardware drivers, so the first thing you should do whenever you encounter problems with DirectX is make sure you have the latest drivers for your display adapter, sound card, and game controller (if applicable).

  2. Next, go to http://www.microsoft.com/directx/ and see if there’s a more recent version of DirectX than the one installed on your system. To determine the currently installed version of DirectX, open the DirectX Management Tool and read the DirectX Version on the bottom of the System tab. The initial release of Windows XP ships with DirectX 8.1.

  3. If you’re experiencing problems only with a certain application or game, check with the manufacturer of that software to see if there’s an update or compatibility issue with your specific hardware. Often, manufacturers will post workarounds, patches, or other fixes on their web sites.

  4. If you wish to start exploring troubleshooting options, choose the appropriate tab (e.g., display, sound, etc.) in the DirectX management tool and try running the tests. Some of the pages have options that can be turned on or off. You may wish to try disabling certain DirectX features to see if it solves the particular problem you’re having.

  5. Choose the More Help tab to try one of the interactive troubleshooters, each a series of questions designed to help diagnose and solve DirectX-related problems.

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