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League of Legends Troubleshooting Guide

Written by: April M. Reid
LOL Troubleshooting Guide

You’ve decided that today is the day you’ll finally grind it out in ranked and join the grueling battle for LP. For the past month, you’ve been mastering your last hitting in the practice tool, watching pro streams every night and brushing up your macro in preparation.

You take a deep breath, plug in your latest-gen Razer mouse, and open up the client. But before you can even queue up in ranked solo/duo, you’re met with an “attempting to reconnect…” pop up.

You restart the client. It doesn’t load up. You restart it again. And again. Now, you’re tilted beyond belief, and your plans of climbing – along with all your hard work – have gone down the drain.

Yep. League might be one of the most successful games in the world, but even LoL can’t escape the connectivity problems and bugs that so often plague online multiplayer games. But don’t worry – you won’t have to abandon the climb just yet; in this guide, we’ll cover the solutions for the most common issues in LoL, from client crashes and lag, to error codes like DirectX and Maestro.

Try the Hextech Repair Tool and Reinstall the Client First

Riot Games has created an automated repair tool that can help troubleshoot and fix many issues with the LoL client. You can download the Hextech Repair Tool for Mac or Windows here [1].

It’s always worth trying this method first before anything else – it could save you hours of troubleshooting! Nevertheless, if the Hextech Repair Tool proves unsuccessful, we have plenty more solutions below for your particular issue or error code.

Dealing With Lag and Packet Loss and How to Improve Them

Sure, your allies might use lag as an excuse for all their missed skillshots and failed flashes, but lag is a genuine problem that many LoL players are plagued with. A whole host of issues can cause lag, but the most common causes are high latency and packet loss.

High latency: Latency (ping) is the time it takes for the game’s data packets (information) to travel between the server and your device. The lower the latency (travel time), the smoother and more responsive your gameplay will be.

Packet loss: Packet loss is when these data packets go “missing” along the way and never make it to your computer or the server. When packet loss happens, the data has to be transmitted all over again, bringing about a noticeable delay (lag).

You can check your latency – and the stability of your connection – by using the dedicated LoL lag report tool [2]. The main fixes for high latency and packet loss include:

  • Reboot router: Regularly rebooting your router keeps it in working order; it clears out the short-term memory and refreshes the connections [3]. Rebooting also helps to keep the router secure from hackers.
  • Network congestion: Too much traffic can overload your network, leading to sluggish connection speeds. Prevent network congestion by closing unnecessary bandwidth-hogging applications in the “Task Manager.” If possible, you should also limit the number of devices connected simultaneously.
  • Use an ethernet cable: Ethernet isn’t prone to interference and degradation like a wireless connection is, reducing the chances of high latency and packet loss by tenfold. Make sure to buy a length-appropriate ethernet cable, and opt for one from a reputable brand [4].
  • Set up Router’s Quality of Service (QoS): This setting lets you configure which devices or applications (ahem, League) the router should prioritize first. Put simply, it means you’ll always get enough bandwidth, even if your roommates are binge-watching Netflix. Here’s a quick, step-by-step tutorial covering how to set up QoS [5].
  • Check which LoL server you’re in: Always make sure you’re playing on the LoL server nearest your location. The further away you are from the server, the further the data packets will have to travel (meaning higher latency). You can check what server you’re on – and change the server if necessary – in the client. Simply go to “store,” then click on the “account” icon at the top right.
  • Check hard drive: A corrupted disk fragment can cause performance issues – you can run a scan to check if your hard drive is corrupted here [7].
  • Invest in a new ISP (or package):Sadly, if none of the methods above have worked, it’s likely that your current package is in need of an upgrade. Opt for a download speed greater than 25 Mbps, and an upload speed between 5 to 10 Mbps. Choose fiber optic if possible – it’s quicker and more stable than broadband [6].

How to Improve FPS and Fix Drops

League of Legends is a competitive and fast-paced game, where every FPS counts. Even the occasional FPS drop can make the difference between you losing or winning a match. There are a few measures you can try to crank up your FPS in game.

  • Optimize LoL settings: We all want to appreciate the Rift in its full beauty. However, if your PC can’t support the high-quality settings, your FPS is going to pay a hefty price. There are several LoL settings you can enable to  instantly improve your FPS, including “low spec mode,” “close client during game,” “increased graphics performance,” and “hide eye candy.” You should also disable “anti-aliasing,” which can be found under the “video advanced” settings. Anti-aliasing removes jagged edges in the game, but often puts more strain on your GPU.
  • Check screen resolution: The game resolution should match your monitor’s resolution. If the resolution is set to higher than your monitor can handle, you’ll experience FPS drops, among other performance issues.
  • Adjust frame rate cap: Set the LoL frame rate cap (60FPS or 144FPS) to your monitor’s refresh rate. You can adjust the frame rate cap in the client settings – go to the “video” category.
  • Update graphic card drivers: Updating the graphic card drivers can improve performance and potentially help with FPS issues, especially if you have a new GPU. Updates usually include bug fixes or new ways to optimize the drivers.
  • Disable Windows game mode: Windows game mode has been known to bring about FPS drops – even though it was initially designed to prevent them! You can find (and disable) game mode in the Windows settings menu, under the “gaming” tab.
  • Turn off Windows game bar: This is another Windows program that can eat up resources and contribute to FPS drops. Windows game bar is also under the “gaming” tab. Simply disable the following settings: “record game clips, screenshot, and broadcast using game bar” and “record in the background while I’m playing a game.”
  • Keep device cool: An overheating device will thermal throttle and transform your gameplay into a stuttering mess. Ways to keep your device cool include clearing out dust, ensuring there’s sufficient airflow and reapplying old thermal paste. You might also need to invest in a new cooling system. If you’re a laptop user, keep the device out of direct sunlight and use a laptop cooling pad.
  • Check for malware: Undetected malware can wreak havoc on your device’s performance (and FPS). Use antivirus software and run scans regularly.

Since lag and FPS drops often come hand in hand, it’s worth trying out the methods we’ve discussed earlier on too.

Client Crashes or Doesn’t Open at All

From corrupted files to a poorly configured firewall, there are several things that can cause the LoL client to constantly crash or refuse to open.

  • League of Legends server status: Just like any online game, LoL experiences server outages from time to time. You can check the server status (and any recent client issues) here [8].
  • Check system requirements: It might seem obvious, but you should double check if your device actually meets LoL’s minimum system requirements; Riot recently increased them in patch 11.17 [9].
  • Temporarily disable firewall: A firewall protects you from viruses, malware and hackers, but if it’s been improperly configured it can block your connection to LoL. The quickest way to determine whether your firewall is the culprit is to temporarily disable it [10]. If the League client opens after this, you’ll need to add the following executable paths to your firewall’s exception list [11]: “C:\Riot Games\League of Legends\LeagueClient.exe, C:\Riot Games\League of Legends\LeagueClientUx.exe, C:\Riot Games\League of Legends\LeagueClientUxRenderer.exe, C:\Riot Games\League of Legends\Game\League of Legends.exe, C:\Riot Games\Riot Client\RiotClientServices.exe.”
  • Temporarily disable antivirus software: Your antivirus software can also wrongly identify LoL as a “threat” and block your connection to it. Temporarily disable your antivirus software and see if it resolves the issue. If it does, you’ll need to adjust the software’s settings to allow LoL to pass through.
  • Update drivers and Windows: Out-of-date drivers often cause the client to crash or not open at all, so make sure you’ve definitely got everything up to date [12]. Not having the latest Windows update can cause similar problems.
  • Disable programs that use overlays: Discord, Steam, Blitz.gg – all of these programs use overlays that can cause the client to crash. It’s worth closing them to see if it fixes the issue.
  • Repair corrupted files: Sometimes, LoL’s files can become corrupted, especially after a new patch update. The Hextech Repair Tool should restore corrupted files. If you can access the client, you can also initiate a full repair: go to the “general” client settings, then under “troubleshooting” select “initiate full repair.”

Fix Disconnection Error

There’s nothing more tilt-inducing than the “attempting to reconnect” pop up and seeing your ms spike to 5000 – especially when you’re playing ranked. The disconnection error is usually a result of connectivity issues, which we’ve covered solutions for throughout this guide. However, if every other game appears to be working fine, there are a few more things you can try.

  • Turn off proxy or VPN: Although proxies and VPNs protect your privacy, they have been known to cause the disconnection error in League. Always switch off proxies and VPNs before loading up the client.
  • Update network drivers: To update your network drivers, click on the “start” button and type “device manager.” Open “network adapters” and right click each one, then and select “update driver software.”
  • Configure DNS: If your ISP’s DNS servers aren’t set up optimally, manually changing your DNS server to a public one can improve your connection and stop the client from crashing. Configuring your DNS settings can be difficult. Follow this video guide to ensure you go about the process properly [13].
  • Release and renew IP Address: Run the Windows command prompt – type “cmd” in the start menu – as administrator. Once command prompt opens, type “ipconfig /release,” then press enter. Next, type “ipconfig /renew” and press enter again.
  • Flush DNS cache: After you’ve renewed your IP address, you’ll next need to flush the DNS. Simply type “ipconfig /flushdns” in the command prompt. Flushing ensures the DNS cache receives and uses the updated information.

Fix PvP Patcher Kernel Error

The PvP patcher kernel error usually occurs due to corrupted patch files. As we mentioned earlier, you can use the Hextech Repair Tool to restore corrupted files. If your files are all in working order, you’ll need to do the following steps:

  • Run LoL as administrator: Right click on the application, select “properties,” then click “run this program as an administrator” under the “compatibility” section. Apply the changes.
  • Close LoL in Task Manager: The PvP Patcher Kernel error can also happen if the LoL client failed to shut down properly the last time you opened it. You can shut the application fully in the “Task Manager” – look for all the League of Legends processes, right click on them and then select “End Task” to terminate them.
  • Check disk space: The latest patch can’t download if your storage is full – make sure you have ample disk space, and delete any unwanted applications or files if necessary.

RADS Error on Windows 11, 10 and 7

The RADS error prevents you from connecting to League’s servers. It typically happens after a failed patch update. Common fixes include running LoL as administrator, ensuring your firewall isn’t blocking access, and changing the DNS server to a public one. Another possible solution is to tweak the system.cfg file:

  • Go to “Riot Games,” “League of Legends,” “RADS system,” then right click the “system.cfg” file. Open it with the Notepad application. Delete the text, and replace it with the lines:
  • DownloadPath = /releases/live, DownloadURL = l3cdn.riotgames.com, Region = NA
  • Save the file, restart your PC and then launch the client.

If none of these fixes work? You’ll need to follow the step-by-step guide below:

  • Disable all antivirus and firewall software.
  • Uninstall the League of Legends client and remove all traces of the game – you can use the program “Revo Uninstaller” to do this effortlessly [14].
  • Next, use “CCleaner” to clean up corrupted files and the registries [15].
  • Download “DirectX End-User Runtime” [16].
  • Reinstall the LoL client.
  • Before opening the client, install the following Microsoft tools [17]: “Visual C++ Redistributable Packages for Visual Studio 2013, Visual C++ Redistributable for Visual Studio 2015, Microsoft .NET Framework 4.6.1 (Web Installer) for Windows 7 SP1, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, Windows 10, Windows Server 2008 R2 SP1, Windows Server 2012 and Windows Server 2012 R2.”

Maestro Error

This is another error that tends to be caused by a lack of administrator permissions or LoL’s connection being blocked. You can find the fixes for these issues here:

  • Lack of administrator permissions: Solution discussed in “fix PvP patcher kernel error” section.
  • Configure firewall: Solution discussed in “client crashes or doesn’t open at all” section.
  • Disable antivirus software: Solution discussed in “fix disconnection error” section.
  • Lower or switch off User Account Control (UAC): Another cause of the Maestro error is poorly configured UAC settings. To disable the UAC setting, type “UAC” in the Windows taskbar. Next, select “user accounts” and go to “change user account control settings.” Drag the slider bar to “never notify.”

DirectX Error

This error code prevents you from opening up the LoL client, and usually occurs due to graphic instabilities. Fortunately, the fix is rather simple. You’ll either need to update your graphic drivers or delete the game.cfg file. You can find the game.cfg file under “configs” in the “League of Legends” folder.

Reinstall the LoL Client

While time-consuming, a clean reinstallation of the LoL client can fix many issues and error codes:

  • Open the “control panel” and uninstall the “League of Legends” application.
  • Using file explorer, find and delete the folder under “C:/Riot Games.”
  • In the Windows Explorer top bar type “%localappdata%.”
  • Find and delete the Riot Games folder.
  • Restart your PC, and then reinstall the game – make sure to select “run as administrator” when installing.

If All Else Fails? Contact Riot Support

If none of the solutions above have worked, your next step is to contact Riot Games Support directly – they have a dedicated tech support team who can help you troubleshoot and fix the issue [18]. If you need help with anything else, whether with how the game works or how to navigate the client, have a read of our LoL beginner’s guide.

[1] https://support-leagueoflegends.riotgames.com/hc/en-us/articles/224826367-Automated-Troubleshooting-Hextech-Repair-Tool

[2] https://lagreport.na.leagueoflegends.com/en/faq

[3] https://www.familyhandyman.com/article/this-is-how-often-you-should-be-rebooting-your-router/

[4] https://venturebeat.com/product-comparisons/best-ethernet-cables-for-gaming-reviews/

[5] https://www.howtogeek.com/75660/the-beginners-guide-to-qos-on-your-router/

[6] https://www.otelco.com/resources/a-guide-to-fiber-optic-internet/

[7] https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2641432

[8] https://status.riotgames.com/

[9] https://www.leagueoflegends.com/en-us/news/game-updates/updated-min-and-recommended-specs-for-lol-tft/

[10] https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/turn-microsoft-defender-firewall-on-or-off-ec0844f7-aebd-0583-67fe-601ecf5d774f

[11] https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/add-an-exclusion-to-windows-security-811816c0-4dfd-af4a-47e4-c301afe13b26#ID0EBF=Windows_11

[12] https://www.pcgamer.com/uk/how-to-update-drivers/

[13] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9BD264pKWzc

[14] https://www.revouninstaller.com

[15] https://www.piriform.com/ccleaner/download

[16] https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=35

[17] https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/search.aspx?q=redistributable+package

[18] https://support-leagueoflegends.riotgames.com/hc/en-us/requests/new