I just tried installing Diablo II on my girlfriend's laptop so that she can get caught up on the gameplay in preparation for playing Diablo III together...except that it won't launch on Windows 7. I remember I did something to get it working before, but I couldn't get it working by just setting compatibility mode to Windows 98.

How can I get Diablo II to run on Windows 7?

  • 3
    Install Torchlight instead
    – Nick T
    Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 1:01
  • 8
    @NickT Except I can play Diablo II with her. Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 1:20
  • LAN or Bnet cough reddit cough?
    – fschl
    Commented Jan 24, 2012 at 21:33

7 Answers 7


In order to run Diablo 2 on my windows 7 PC, I did the following (and this should work for Vista as well):

  • Have the compatibility mode set to Windows XP (Service Pack 3)
  • Run in 256 colours
  • Disable Desktop composition
  • Run this program as an administrator

If you still run into issues, try keeping the Screen Resolution menu opened as you play. This may sound odd, but I've seen a few people say this solved their problems when playing.

  • 2
    This was the solution I used. It made it run well enough to get the patch, which solved most of the other problems with colors and such. Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 1:20
  • 2
    I'm actually running Diablo II in Vista without the first two steps (compatibility mode is not checked and colors were not changed). I do have UAC off, but I'm an administrator on my PC anyway, and Diablo II is running under me. Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 1:59
  • 1
    I didn't have to do squat on Win7. I have UAC disabled fwiw (which I actually DON'T recommend, but I have an application that simply won't work unless it's off, so this could be the same)
    – Shinrai
    Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 18:13
  • 1
    @Shinrai Ditto. Install, VidTest, Run, done. Commented Aug 24, 2011 at 11:33
  • @Shinrai I've heard the same thing from other people. It seems it's just hit or miss.
    – Wipqozn
    Commented Aug 24, 2011 at 12:11

I'm not sure if this helps but it works perfectly for me on Mac + Windows 7; I've downloaded the clients through the Blizzard portal/store by adding my games. Think I had issues using the actual CDs because you couldn't patch them properly to begin with, etc.

If you have the CD keys you can just hop onto the website and add your games and download the clients for free:


If you're planning to play over anything other than battle.net, you'll be able to download the client on multiple machines using the same CD key and play locally/over hamachi/whatever without any issues.

  • 4
    This worked for me with no issues in Win 7 x64.
    – Fambida
    Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 0:21
  • Can you or someone else elaborate on this solution? I've downloaded both the D2 and D2:LOD clients from Battle.net, and neither of them 'do' anything - running Installer.exe and clicking on "Play" from either does nothing at all. Commented Sep 4, 2014 at 2:37

Windows Vista/7 and Diablo II by Skie_m

Windows Vista and 7 have known compatibility issues with Diablo II/LoD ... to fix them, take the following steps:

Right-click your Game.exe file and in the compatibility view, make certain you are running the game under Windows XP SP2/3 mode, and DISABLE DESKTOP COMPOSITION. This should allow your game to start normally, but you will probably have serious lag spike issues that need to be resolved.

On your Desktop, hit Control+Alt+Delete and open your Task Manager program. Select the "Services" tab, and click the "services" button at the bottom of that screen to access your services manager. (you can close your Task Manager now) Scroll down the list until you find "Windows Media Player Network Sharing Service". Stop this service, then right-click it and select "properties" and then DISABLE this service.

This will fix your lag issues and compatibility issues with D2 in Windows Vista (6.0+) and Windows 7 (currently release candidate version 7.1.00)


When I installed on Windows 7 I was getting Unhandled Exceptions and couldn't get past the first menu. I found that installing the latest patch from Battle.Net seemed to fix everything.

Diablo II Patches


Add the key to your blizzard account. Download a working version from Blizzard.

  • 9
    Mind adding a bit more information? :)
    – badp
    Commented Aug 23, 2011 at 18:43

make a shortcut, and in the target after the quotes add a screen resolution ie "shortcut.address" -h 1080 -w 720

Hope this helps, oh and you can do this for most old games. even ones that open but lag. almost an instant fix.

  • That might work for a windowed mode. This question is about running Diablo 2 on Windows 7.
    – Frank
    Commented Jan 20, 2013 at 4:06

Start the game first then minimize it. now open the task manager kill explorer.exe. AGAIN RUN THE GAME......

  • Hi @user46490, welcome to Arqade! Could you try adding a little more detail to your answer? Perhaps a numbered list of steps would get your point across a little better.
    – EBongo
    Commented Apr 6, 2013 at 21:01

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