Flight Simulator 2020 – Lag Fix, Crashing and Stuttering

Microsoft Flight Simulator is not a new name in the gaming industry, it has been here for a long time. If I remember correctly, it is one of the oldest titles in the gaming industry, the game also runs via Azure Cloud because it’s way too large to be stored on a computer. Flight Simulator X was released 14 years ago, the same game with improved graphics and stuff is now available to be downloaded.

You can access the game via Game Pass for a mere $1, or you can purchase the title separately via Steam $59.99 for the standard version, $89.99 deluxe version or, for even more of those, the $119.99 premium version.

The beta version did gather some good reviews from the critics but the game similar to the 14 year old version has performance issues. In this article, we will cover a few tweaks that can help you with that. Continue reading to find out.


Flight Simulator Lag Fix

Flight Simulator System Requirements

Minimum

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel i5-4460 | AMD Ryzen 3 1200
  • Memory: 8 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 770 | AMD Radeon RX 570
  • Storage: 150 GB available space

Recommended:

  • OS: Windows 10
  • Processor: Intel i5-8400 | AMD Ryzen 5 1500X
  • Memory: 16 GB RAM
  • Graphics: NVIDIA GTX 970 | AMD Radeon RX 590
  • Storage: 150 GB available space

The game was demanding back in the day, and that hasn’t changed. Your PC configuration should fall in between or higher than the recommended settings to run the game smoothly. If that is not the case, you might have to compromise with graphics and FPS obviously.


Continue reading and let’s tweak to make the game run better.

Change Graphic Card Settings

Below are the settings for AMD and Nvidia graphics card users, apply these settings for the best performance.

For Nvidia Users

  • Open up Nvidia’s Control Panel. Right-click on desktop > click Nvidia control panel
  • Click Manage 3D Settings > Program Settings
  • Find “Flight Simulator”, you can manually add the game if it’s not in the list
  • Now, make the following changes:

Monitor Tech: G-Sync (If available)
Maximum Pre-rendered frames: 2
Threaded optimization: On
Power Management: Prefer Maximum Performance
Texture Filtering – Quality:  Performance

For AMD Users

  • Anti-Aliasing Mode: Use Application settings
  • Anti-aliasing Method: Multisampling
  • Morphological Filtering: Off
  • Anisotropic Filtering Mode: Use application settings
  • Texture Filtering Quality: Performance
  • Surface Format Optimization: On
  • Wait for V-sync: Off
  • OpenGL Triple Buffering: Off
  • Shader Cache: AMD optimized
  • Tesselation Mode: Override application settings
  • Maximum Tesselation Level: Off
  • GPU Workload: Graphics
  • Chill: Off
  • Frame Rate Target Control: Disabled

These settings should be good enough for you. Try tweaking a bit with the priority of the application, this also tends to give a little FPS boost.


Update Device Drivers

Whenever a new game makes it’s arrival, especially when it’s a AAA title, Nvidia is known for pushing their optimized updates for the best performance with their graphic cards. I am not sure about AMD because I’ve never used an AMD card. Below are the links for downloading the latest drivers.

Since this is a AAA title, I am sure Nvidia will be pushing an update with compatibility for this game. Make sure to keep an eye on your device driver updates.


Flight Simulator 2020 Stuttering Fix

Another thing to check is, open up the task manager and check your memory and disk usage. Close all applications (non-windows) that are eating your memory and using disk drive. If you are still stuttering with everything looking fine then you should probably wait for the hotfix update, which should be pushed out shortly.

These problems are mostly caused due to high disk usage and can be fixed immediately by moving the game to SSD or closing apps that are using “disk”.


Disable Full-Screen Optimization & High DPI in Windows 10

Full-screen optimization and DPI settings come pre-configured with Windows 10. These are known for causing trouble with games leading to several issues. To disable:

  • Locate the game installation
  • Find the .exe file of the game
  • Right-click > Properties > Compatibility Tab
  • Tick the “Disable Full-Screen Optimizations” tab
  • Now, click the “Change high DPI settings” button
  • Tick “Override high DPI scaling behavior” and select “Application” from the drop-down menu
  • Save Settings.
Example of BF5.

Tone Down Game Settings

The general rule of thumb for every game is if you are lagging it is always recommended to tone down the settings. Play around a little bit with the settings, turn down shadows and textures, this should help.


Turn off Game Mode

Windows says that the Game mode helps in optimizing all-around windows processes, windows updates and other windows related stuff while running games if you have the game mode enabled. But this isn’t factually true, the game bar has been known for causing issues related to FPS. So it’s better to turn it off if you are not using it.

  • Click Start > Settings > Gaming
  • On the Game Bar, set “Record game clips, screenshots, and broadcast using Game bar” to off.
  • Now head to the Captures tab set the “Record the background while I’m playing a game” to Off.
  • Lastly, click on the Game Mode tab, and turn it off.

P.S. Nvidia’s Shadowplay is better for capturing game clips.


Update Windows

The recent couple updates were weird and broke a lot of games, to fix those issues, Windows has already pushed out hotfixes and you can download them right away. If you are running an older version of Windows, I’d recommend you to download the updated version.

There was also an update that caused windows to use up a lot of RAM for its search bar’s function called Cortana. This also has been fixed, you just have to update.


Disable Discord in-game overlay

If you are using Discord like me, then I’d recommend you to change a few things. One such thing is, discord overlay, it’s not really something you need at all times. I use a two-monitor setup, so the overlay is useless for me. It is known for causing FPS related issues.

Disable Hardware Acceleration in Discord

  • Open Discord
  • Click on User Settings > Appearance
  • Click on the Hardware Acceleration radio, this will turn it off.

Disable Discord in-game Overlay

  • Open Discord
  • Go to Overlay under App Settings
  • Click on the “Enable in-game overlay”, this will turn it off.

Increase Game Priority

This is an old-school method of boosting FPS in certain games, this only affects the CPU relying Games.

  • Press CTLR + Shift + ESC to open task manager
  • Find Flight Simulator and right-click > go to details
  • Now right-click on the process’s .exe file and set priority to “high”.

This will prioritize your game over other windows applications and provide you with a little boost.


Flight Simulator Crashing Issue Fix

The Servers are Overloaded

Note: Some of the game stuff is delivered via Azure Cloud, in the starting few hours you might face a few issues.

The game just released and so many people are trying to access it at the same time. This is also leading to long loading times and black screens as reported in another article. I had to restart my game a couple of times to get rid of this issue. This should be fixed within a few hours if Microsoft takes action.

Disable Overclocking

For me the culprit was my overclocked GPU, I went ahead and disabled MSI Afterburner, changed all the settings to stock and my game went running smoothly.

The game is also lagging a lot on RTX 2060, I was only getting 50 FPS with Ultra settings. The game system requirements have GeForce GTX 1060 as recommended but still, there are multiple issues. Also, the game currently looks blurry with jagged edges all around.


If you are still lagging then I’ll advise you to check Task Manager for any applications that might be conflicting with the game. You can also turn off your antivirus while playing the game. There can be multiple reasons why the game might be lagging for you, after applying all the optimizations given above, the performance should be better.