Zwift Keeps Freezing On Me

I contacted Zwift a few weeks ago about an issue I had been having with laptop freezing while running Zwift. I’ll be midway through a workout and the screen will just freeze, and my only option is hold down the power button and force a restart. After viewing the log files I sent them, it was suggested that the problem could likely be that my graphics drivers, and that I should update them. I’ve since updated all that needed updated. But the laptop froze on me again this morning.

I really need to figure out what is causing this problem, whether the laptop simply isn’t able to keep up with the demands of the Zwift program, or it is Zwift itself. This has been a problem that I have experienced on occasion ever since using Zwift, but I’ve noticed it more frequently now that I am using Workout mode. I don’t know if that has anything to do with it or not.

The laptop is a Toshiba Satellite C55-C with an Intel Core i5-5200U CPU @ 2.20 GHz. It has 8GB or RAM. It is a 64bit Windows 8.1 operating system. Is this sufficient?

Upon starting Zwift, I put Norton Security Suite in “Silent Mode” which insures that there are no background tasks running while I am on Zwift.

I have the laptop set on a stand beside me while on the bike, and an HDMI cable from it plugged into the back of my Samsung flat screen television positioned in front of me.

I am not Wi-fi, but instead connected via Ethernet cable directly to the cable modem. However, could brief internet drops cause this screen freeze issue?

I am at a loss. I’ve adjusted the computer and graphics setting for “performance” in hopes that it will help handle the program. Not sure what else to do.

Any advice?

What resolution setting are you using within the Zwift program? I would drop it down to the lowest setting and see if that helps.

The laptop is probably close to the bare minimum in terms of specs to run Zwift. 

Hi Derek, a full computer lockup isn’t something software can typically directly cause so it most likely points to one of two things. 

  1. The graphics driver is not being updated by the manufacturer, and has bugs that cause the hardware to lock up.  This was not totally uncommon in graphics drivers from 2014 and earlier.  Given your machine is from 2015 and you’ve updated the drivers, this probably isn’t it.

  2. The machine is overheating.  This could be due to dust in the vents, insufficient cooling underneath the laptop (try making sure air can flow underneath, or buy a ‘cooling pad’ they sell for laptops for this exact purpose), or simply because the machine wasnt designed to run sustained 3d graphics like a game might need.

Is there decent air flow under and around the machine?  If not, maybe give that a try? 


Paul, I’ve run it at the 1080 for a long time, but knocked it down to 720 a good while back when it froze up on me a couple time; I figured it might be something like that, so I thought I’d give it a shot. Perhaps now I should knock it down to the lowest setting. But when I do that it looks blurry to me on the television.

Jon, yes, the overheating thing could be an issue. I’ve just put a couple old brake pads underneath it to let some air flow under. I’ll see if that helps.