SOLVED! Games For Windows Live Freezes On Login

While it’s no longer in mainstream use, Games for Windows Live (GFWL) remains a must-have if people want to play certain legendary titles on PC. Still, the lack of support means that GFWL is susceptible to a wide range of errors, especially during the login process. Games for Windows Live freezes on login and you don’t know what must be done? In that case, this article is exactly what you need.

The Usual Suspects


Since Microsoft has discontinued GFWL, it’s wise to take compatibility into account as you troubleshoot problems. Back in the days when GFWL still saw active service, the most commonly used operating systems included Windows 7, 8, and Vista. Hence, running GFWL on Windows 10 and 11 usually leads to compatibility issues.


All in all, following the closing of GFWL, there is no way for people to get updates. That being said, you should make sure you have the last version of GFWL. If your version of GFWL is outdated, Games for Windows Live freezes on login is one of the consequences.


In case you don’t know, to run smoothly, GFWL requires a couple of applications. For example, several games need Windows Live Sign-in Assistant for login procedures and redistributables must be installed to ensure stability as well. It’s noteworthy that users have complained about redistributables for GFWL not working on 64-bit versions of Windows. That is understandable as 32-bit redistributables were prevalent back while GFWL was still in service.

Game Servers No Longer Support GFWL

With GFWL closing up shop, more and more games have decided to end their support for it. The reason is a no-brainer: no game producer would ever want to limit their products to a dying game service.

Getting GFWL To Work: Advice

Uninstall And Reinstall

Making sure your application is up-to-date is crucial for troubleshooting. With Microsoft pulling the link for GFWL from its website, it may be difficult to get GFWL installers. Fortunately, you can still find an url from Microsoft containing the download link for the last updated version of GFWL here.

Standard computers nowadays run on Windows 10 and 11 Vista while GFWL was built for Windows 7, 8 and Vista. Hence, if you notice that Games for Windows Live freezes on login, consider running it as an administrator in compatibility mode.

  • Step 1. Perform a clean uninstall for your current GFWL.
  • Step 2. Download GFWL setup file from the provided link.
  • Step 3. Right-click gfwlivesetup.exe then select Properties.
  • Step 4. On the Compatibility tab, tick the “Run this program in compatibility mode for” box then select “Windows 7” or “Windows 8” from the list.
  • Step 5. Tick the “Run this program as an administrator” checkbox.
  • Step 6. Hit Apply and then OK.
  • Step 7. Now run the installer and follow the steps to install GFWL.

Think About The Apps

Being as old as it is, GFWL requires apps as well as redistributables to work properly. Thankfully, the PCGamingWiki community has compiled all the necessary setups into a single package. Perform a clean GFWL uninstallation and then reinstall using this package may resolve the problem.

The package includes:

Switch Apps To 32-bit

In layman’s terms, old programs such as GFWL don’t work well on 64-bit operating systems despite saying 64-bit is supported. Rest assured that there is no need to reinstall your OS as Windows 64-bit is capable of running 32-bit applications. All you need to do is swap the application’s main files from 64-bit into their 32-bit counterparts. To do so:

  • Step 1. Go to C:\Windows\SysWOW64 (Note that C:\ here means the Windows installation drive. Yours may be different.)
  • Step 2. Locate xlive, xlive.dll,, xlivefnt.dll, xliveinstall.dll, xliveinstallhost.exe files.
  • Step 3. Move these files to C:\Windows\System32.

Now the files used by the app should be regarded as 32-bit. Once the files are loaded, GFWL itself will be 32-bit as well.  After you finish, run GFWL again and see how things turn out. If the freezing persists, copy the files and paste them into where your game directory is located.

Look Around For News

Let’s be honest, the only reason you are still using GFWL is likely because you are stuck with it. The store doesn’t work, the services have been shut down and you can’t even redownload the games you own on it. Hence, in the case that GFWL acts up, it won’t hurt to search the Internet for news. Your games have moved to other mainstream game services such as Steam or Epic Games Store.

The changing of service will invalidate the need for GFWL. You likely have to repurchase games but you no longer have to pull your hair out every time Games for Windows Live freezes on login.

I’ve Purchased My Game From Steam But It Requires GFWL. What’s Going On Here?

A couple of old games still require GFWL for specific functions such as achievement, leaderboard and so on. As you install legendary titles on Steam, Steam redistributes the version of GFWL that was around when the game came out. As a result, you may not be getting the actual latest version of GFWL. If you are having issues with GFWL, try updating it to the latest version.

Why Can I Not Contact GFWL Customer Support?

Microsoft stopped customer support service for GFWL titles a long time ago. You can still contact the game’s customer support if you need additional help regarding GFWL-related issues.

Where Can I Get Games For Windows Live Marketplace?

Games for Windows Live Marketplace was the store for GFWL where you could purchase and download games. As with many services related to GFWL, it is no longer available. If you wish to purchase games from Microsoft, you’ll have to use the successor to GFWL which is the Microsoft Store.

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