How to Fix Physxloader.dll Is Missing or Not Found Errors

A troubleshooting guide for physxloader.dll errors

Screenshot of a physxloader DLL error message in Windows
physxloader DLL error message.

Physxloader.dll error messages may appear while using certain programs, when Windows starts up, or even during a Windows installation. Here are some common physxloader.dll error messages:

  • Physxloader.dll Not Found
  • This application failed to start because physxloader.dll was not found. Re-installing the application may fix this problem.
  • Cannot find [PATH]\physxloader.dll
  • The file physxloader.dll is missing.
  • This program can't continue because physxloader.dll is missing from your computer
  • Cannot start [APPLICATION]. A required component is missing: physxloader.dll. Please install [APPLICATION] again.

Information in this article applies to all Microsoft operating systems including Windows 10Windows 8Windows 7Windows VistaWindows XP, and Windows 2000.

Causes of Physxloader.dll Errors

Physxloader.dll errors are caused by the removal or corruption of the physxloader DLL file. This particular DLL file is associated with the PhysX physics engine from NVIDIA. Physxloader.dll errors could be due to problems with the Windows registry, a computer virus or malware issue, or even hardware failure.

Do not download the physxloader.dll file from a DLL download website. If you need a copy of physxloader.dll, obtain it from its original, legitimate source.

How to Fix Physxloader.dll Errors

Try these solutions in order until the problem is fixed:

You may need to start Windows in Safe Mode if you're unable to access Windows normally due to the physxloader.dll error.

  1. Install the PhysX System software. Download the PhysX System software from NVIDIA and install it on your PC to replace the missing or corrupted physxloader.dll file. Be sure to restart your computer after the installation.

    PhysX System software download page

    If the error occurs while playing a particular game, check the game's installation folder for a version of the PhysX System software.

  2. Restore your Recycle Bin. If you suspect that you've accidentally deleted physxloader.dll, you might be able to restore the deleted file from the Recycling Bin. If you've already emptied the Recycle Bin, you can use data recovery software to restore the deleted file.

    Recycle bin on the Windows 10 desktop

    Only recover a deleted physxloader.dll file if you're positive that you deleted it yourself.

  3. Run a virus/malware scan. The physxloader.dll error you're seeing could be related to a hostile program that is masquerading as the DLL file. Scan your computer for malware to see if this is the case.

    Avira antivirus software
  4. Use System Restore to undo recent system changes. If you suspect that the physxloader.dll error was caused by recent changes made to an important file or configuration, use Windows System Restore to restore your Windows PC.

    System Restore in the Windows System Properties menu
  5. Reinstall the program that uses the physxloader.dll file. If the physxloader.dll error occurs when you use a particular program, reinstalling the software should replace the missing file.

    Uninstall apps in the Windows settings

    Most physxloader.dll issues are caused by problems with the Steam client. If reinstalling Steam doesn't fix the problem, the Steam Community forum has instructions for repairing Steam game files.

  6. Update hardware driversUpdate drivers for hardware devices that might be related to physxloader.dll. For example, if you see the "physxloader.dll is missing" error when you play a 3D video game, try updating the drivers for your video card.

    Update driver option on the Windows Device Manager menu
  7. Roll back your drivers. If the physxloader.dll error began after updating a particular hardware device, roll back the device drivers to an older version.

    Roll Back Driver option on the Windows hardware properties menu
  8. Repair Windows. Perform a Windows Startup Repair to restore all Windows DLL files to their working versions.

    Startup Repair on the Windows Advance Options menu
  9. Clean the Windows registry. Use a free Windows registry cleaner to remove invalid physxloader.dll registry entries that might be causing the error.

    CCleaner Free Windows registry cleaner tool
  10. Perform a clean installation of Windows. Perform clean install of Windows as a last resort to start with a fresh copy of the operating system.

    Windows installation screen

    All the information on your hard drive will be erased during a clean install.

  11. Test and replace your hardware. Use a free memory testing tool or a hard drive testing program to check for hardware-related DLL errors. If the hardware fails any of your tests, replace the memory or replace the hard drive as soon as possible, or take your PC to a professional computer repair service.

    Steps for replacing a hard drive
     Maritsa Patrinos / Lifewire