How to fix the Shaders Optimization bug in Modern Warfare 3

COD MW3 Shaders Optimization – Experiencing the “Shaders Optimization” bug in COD Modern Warfare 3? Don’t worry, we got you.

What is “Shaders Optimization” in Modern Warfare 3

According to Infinity Ward:

Shaders work alongside your installed drivers and display adapters to improve your in-game performance and guarantee all textures are displayed correctly, offering you the best gaming experience.

Shader Optimization cannot progress while in a lobby and might occur during a gameplay if needed.

There are currently two icons or indicators for this setting:

  • Optimization is currently running in the background
  • Optimization is causing performance issues

Shader Optimization Indicators in Modern Warfare 2

Basically, before Modern Warfare 3, COD games used to have something called ‘Shader Compiling’. Infinity Ward has just changed its name.

What is this ‘Shaders Optimization’ bug all about

It is a bug, that a lot of PC users are experiencing at the moment, where players are getting a message in the top-left corner of their screens that says “SHADERS OPTIMIZATION”, followed by the percentage of the process.

And different people are witnessing different variants of this bug. For users, Shaders Optimization is stuck at 0% and for some, the message is showing up every time they restart COD MW 3, right before they enter the Main Menu, even after the installation has been completed once.

And then they are getting an error message called “Restart Required”, where the game is asking them to restart the game.

Let me tell you, I was experiencing this issue myself when I was trying to test the performance of COD MW3 on different GPUs. And at one point, this bug got me so frustrated, that I literally pressed Alt+F4 and stopped my test completely for that moment.

How to fix this bug

If you have played all the COD games since Modern Warfare, then you should know that this bug comes back now and then. No matter how many times you fix it, it would show up again after a patch download.

If the optimization process is stuck at 0% for you, then there could be two reasons for that:

  • It is actually bugged.
  • You do not have a powerful enough PC where the optimization process would be much faster.

I personally tested this game on two systems and swapped between 4 GPUs. The first one is my personal pc, which has a Ryzen 5 5600x, paired with RTX 3070 and a WD Black SN77 NVMe, and the other one I used had an i5 10400F and GTX 1650 (No SSD). Then I swapped the RTX 3070 with a 3060 Ti, and tested again.

Obviously, the installation on the 5600x PC was flawless and much faster. Yes, the message popped up for me plenty of times, but it reached 100% in less than a minute, and then I was able to play the game normally.

On the other hand, the optimization did get stuck on the 10400F PC, and all we did was restart the game. After the restart, the installation did take some time, but it was completed.

But if the ‘Shaders Optimization’ message is popping up repeatedly in COD MW3 even after you have completed the installation once, then this is what you need to do:

  1. Start Modern Warfare 3.
  2. Go to your Settings, and click on the ‘Display’ tab.
  3. Scroll down until you find the option called ‘Restart Shaders Optimization’ to the bottom of the Display
  4. Click on it
  5. And wait for the installation to be completed

The Restart Shaders Optimization setting will delete your shaders cache and reoptimize all shaders from the beginning. You will have to do this every time you update your driver.

If this doesn’t end up working, then there is another fix for this. Just upgrade or downgrade your GPU driver. You see, when you make changes to your GPU driver, Modern Warfare 3 has a habit of initiating the Shaders Optimization process from the beginning.

If you think this guide has helped, then let us know in the comment section below. And for more Modern Warfare 3 guides, keep an eye on Frondtech. We will be covering every single technical issue and bug of the game. Good luck!

That’s all, folks!

Last Updated on November 3, 2023

22 thoughts on “How to fix the Shaders Optimization bug in Modern Warfare 3”

  1. Shaders stuck at 6% on PC. Performance requirements not an issue. Restarting shaders doesn’t work. Reinstalled game, updated all drivers. When I hit play button nothing happens. Any ideas?

  2. Are you using battle net? Once I changed my location to the USA everything worked. They may be trying to stop players from joining servers in other regions.

      1. Same problem, stuck at 6% and the play button does not work
        13th Gen Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-13700KF
        Gtx 3080 ver: 526.61

          1. Sorry I meant RTX 3080. So Finally found a solution after going through so many blog websites. So all you have to do is exit the game, click Manage install. Then add the language French and Arabic, but keep English as your Preferred language. Click ok/apply and it will update approx 5GB after that just start the game and it will fix the the shaders optimization stuck at 6%

  3. Loaded the game and was very unimpressed with the graphics. It was honestly awful. Found out about this issue and this post seems to have solved the problem. My game no longer looks like a ps2 game 🙂

  4. Same problem, it stays at 97% and I installed the game again and made a repair and nothing.

    rtx 3070
    ryzen 7 5700x
    16gb de ram a 3600
    could you help me? 🙁

        1. If the installation is getting stuck at 97%, it means that there is a file that is stopping the game from reaching 100% progress. If upgrading or downgrading your Nvidia driver doesn’t work, then your best bet is to reinstall the game in a different location.

          1. OK thanks; I have another normal game problem and after half an hour of the game everything crashes, first the sound goes away, then the one from Discord and now dps of 3 min is where it crashes and I don’t understand why I already installed it and reinstalled it and it shows I did the repair, reinstalled the nvidia drivers and nothing persists the crash

          2. Have you tried checking your temperature? Make sure that your CPU or GPU is not overheating.

  5. Si, tengo refrigeración líquida y la temperatura no sube a más de 68 y ahora ultime me está dando pérdida de datos y se suben a un número que ni entra en la pantalla, y sigue apareciendo el crasheo de directx, ya instale los drivers anteriores e igual sigue le cambie de disco la instalación y sigue. No tienes un Discord para comunicarnos mejor @shoaib?

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