Grand Theft Auto IV

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Grand Theft Auto IV
Grand Theft Auto IV cover.jpg
Release dates
December 2, 2008
Grand Theft Auto IV at WineHQ
Grand Theft Auto IV at SteamDB
 Grand Theft Auto IV at Wikipedia
Grand Theft Auto
Grand Theft Auto 1997
Grand Theft Auto 2 1999
Grand Theft Auto III 2002
Grand Theft Auto: Vice City 2003
Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas 2005
Grand Theft Auto IV 2008
Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City 2010
Grand Theft Auto V 2015

Key points

Information Shares many similarities with Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City in terms of its engine and performance.
Advantage Extensive modding community, along with Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City.
Advantage Ability to import your music for your own custom radio station.
Disadvantage Reports indicate this title is a poor port.[1][2]

General information

More information Rockstar Support
More information GTA Modding - A wiki hosting mod information for the GTA series.
More information GTAForums - Grand Theft Auto IV Discussion
More information GTA Network - A huge network of fansites all dedicated to the Grand Theft Auto series
More information Steam Community Discussions
More information Steam Users' Forums for game series


Source DRM Notes Keys
Retail Availability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation Complete Edition
Direct2Drive Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation
GameStop Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation Complete Edition only
GamersGate Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation Steam key.
Green Man Gaming Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation
Humble Store Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation
Steam Availability Table Icons - Steam.svgAvailability Table Icons - GFWL.svgRequires online activation
Information All versions require Games for Windows - LIVE and SecuROM.
Information Online features require Rockstar Games Social Club.
Information Complete Edition includes Grand Theft Auto: Episodes from Liberty City.

Essential improvements[edit]

Skip intro videos[edit]

Fix Instructions

Apply the GTA IV Intro Patch.


Advantage Since patch Rockstar Social Club is no longer required to run the game.[3]

Downgrade to[edit]

Information Some mods work only with this version. This version is also claimed to improve game performance.[4][5]
Disadvantage Multiplayer won't work with older versions.

Fix Apply old patch[6]

  1. Download the original update and install it.
  2. Rename the folder where you have installed the game (usually "Grand Theft Auto IV" or "GTA IV").
  3. Download Rockstar Games Social Club and install it.
  4. Merge back the content of your renamed folder to the GTA IV folder this latest installer will have created.

Flash Player[edit]

Information Flash Player is required to use the Social Club TV features. Flash Player for Internet Explorer is the version that needs to be installed.

Fix Install Flash Player

  1. Download and install the latest version of Flash Player for Internet Explorer.

Game data[edit]

In-game general settings.

Configuration file(s) location[edit]

Windows %LOCALAPPDATA%\Rockstar Games\GTA IV\Settings\SETTINGS.CFG
Disadvantage Configuration files are encrypted. For an alternative, see Command Line.

Save game data location[edit]

Windows %LOCALAPPDATA%\Rockstar Games\GTA IV\savegames\<user-id>\
Information %LOCALAPPDATA%\Microsoft\XLive must also be backed up as the save data is bound to the Games for Windows - LIVE profile.

Save game cloud syncing[edit]

System Native Notes
Steam Cloud No native support
GameSave Manager Native support

Video settings[edit]

In-game video settings.
Graphics option Option WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution Native support WSGF WS Gold.svg
Multi-monitor Native support WSGF MM Silver.svg
4K Ultra HD Native support WSGF Incomplete.svg
Field of view (FOV) Hackable Use Ultimate Camera Control.
Windowed Hackable See Command Line.
Borderless fullscreen windowed Hackable Use Windowed Borderless Gaming.
Anisotropic filtering (AF) Native support Up to 16 samples.
Anti-aliasing (AA) Hackable Can be forced through the NVIDIA Control Panel/AMD Control Center.
Vertical sync (Vsync) Native support In-game Vsync locks the frame rate to 53-55 FPS.[7]
60 FPS Native support
120+ FPS Native support No frame rate or refresh rate cap.[8]

Input settings[edit]

In-game key map settings.
In-game keyboard/mouse settings.
In-game gamepad settings.
Keyboard and mouse Native Notes
Remapping Native support
Mouse acceleration No native support
Mouse input in menus Native support
Mouse Y-axis inversion Native support
Controller support Native support See DirectInput Controller support
Full controller support Native support
Controller remapping No native support Can only switch between pre-set layouts.
Controller Y-axis inversion Native support


Disadvantage Recoil seems to be inexistant with the mouse whereas it works properly with a gamepad. This makes the game much easier and shooting less realistic with a mouse over a gamepad.[9] This is fixable with the Bullet Spread/Recoil Fix mod.

DirectInput Controller support[edit]

Fix Launch the game with -usedirectinput parameter[10]

Fix Option in Controller Settings

  1. In the game, go to Options then Controls then Controller Options and click Enable DirectInput


Information The command line argument has been added in patch[11] and the Enable DirectInput option has been added in patch[12]

PS3 Controller Buttons[edit]

If using a PS2/PS3 controller, you might want to change the Xbox 360 buttons to the PS2/PS3 buttons. In order to do so, follow the instructions below.

Fix Instructions

  1. Download the file buttons_360.wtd and frontend_360.wtd located here.
  2. Go to the installation folder.
  3. Go to <path-to-game> and navigate to PC\textures\.
  4. Drag and drop the file you recently downloaded into that folder.

Audio settings[edit]

In-game audio settings.
Audio options Native Notes
Separate volume controls Native support SFX & Music.
Surround sound Native support Up to 5.0 output[13]
Subtitles Native support
Closed captions No native support
Mute on focus lost Native support


Language UI Audio CC Notes
English Native support Native support Native support
French Native support No native support Native support
German Native support No native support Native support
Italian Native support No native support Native support
Spanish Native support No native support Native support
Russian Native support No native support Native support


Information Social Club website stat tracking and leaderboards have been shut down. All other online features are unaffected.[14]

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
LAN play Native support 32
Online play Native support 32

Connection types

Type Native Notes
Matchmaking Native support
Peer-to-peer Native support
Dedicated No native support
Self-hosting Native support
Direct IP No native support


Protocol Port(s) and/or port range(s)
TCP (outbound) 53, 80, 3074
UDP (outbound) 53, 88, 3074

VR support[edit]

3D modes Native GG3D Notes
Nvidia 3D Vision Native support GG3D bronze.svg
TriDef 3D Native support GG3D silver.svg
iZ3D Native support GG3D bronze.svg
Devices Native Notes
Oculus Rift Hackable See RiftEnabled.

Issues fixed[edit]

Information Game uses Games for Windows - LIVE. Make sure you are running latest version and refer to the concerning page if you have further problems

Fatal error RMN20 upon attempted launch[edit]

Fix Run game in compatibility mode

  1. Go to the installation folder.
  2. Right click on GTAIV.exe and enter its properties screen.
  3. Under the compatibilty tab, set the compatibility mode to Windows Vista (Service Pack 2) and click OK.

Fix If using Windows 7, Vista or XP, update your Windows to the latest available service pack[15]

Stuttering and other performance issues after running the game for a while[edit]

Fix Force maximum available memory[16]

  1. Create a file named commandline.txt in your root installation folder.
  2. Depending on your texture quality, enter one of the following codes in to the newly created file:
    • Low textures (256 MB VRAM): -memrestrict 209715200
    • Medium textures (512 MB VRAM): -memrestrict 314572800
    • High textures (1 GB+ VRAM): -memrestrict 629145600
  3. Save the file and launch the game.

Fix Make sure Steam Overlay is enabled[17][citation needed]

Game minimizes after clicking start[edit]

Information If the game minimizes after selecting between GTA IV base and EFLC and can not be made full screen again it may be a problem with PunkBuster. It can be fixed by stopping it from running.

Fix Stop PunkBuster

  1. Press Ctrl+ Shift+Esc
  2. Click PnkBstrA.exe in Processes.
  3. Click End task to stop it from running.

Game will load with minimal graphic settings and won't let you change them[edit]

Information For some video cards the game will run but won't let you change the graphics settings to anything better. In order to force the game to allow the changes, load the .exe with the extra parameter: -norestrictions. If running Windows 7 or Windows 8.1, run the game in compatibility mode for Windows Vista (SP2)[citation needed].

Fix Bypass graphics restrictions on Steam version

  1. Open up your Steam library.
  2. Right-click on Grand Theft Auto IV and select Properties.
  3. Press the Set Launch Options... button.
  4. Enter -norestrictions into the text field, press OK.
  5. Start the game.

Fix Bypass graphics restrictions on other versions

  1. Go to <path-to-game>.
  2. Create a new text file in this directory and name it commandline.txt.
  3. Open it and add the string -norestrictions to it.
  4. Save the file.
  5. Start the game.

AMD Radeon water fix[edit]

Information There is a problem where the water loses its features and details after a while.

Fix Instructions

  1. Download the file waterTex.fxc located here.
  2. Go to the installation folder.
  3. In <path-to-game> navigate to common\shaders\win32_30_atidx10\ and rename your original waterTex.fxc file.
  4. Drag and drop the file you recently downloaded into that folder.
  5. After the previous step has been completed navigate out of that folder and now to common\shaders\win32_30_low_ati\ and rename your original waterTex.fxc file.
  6. Drag and drop the file you recently downloaded into that folder.

Algonquin Bridge lag issue[edit]

Fix Description

If you're experiencing significant FPS drops only on the Algonquin Bridge with an Intel i7 processor.

  1. Launch GTA 4.
  2. Launch Task Manager and click Details (in Windows 8 and above) or Processes (in Windows XP, Vista or 7).
  3. Right click gtaiv.exe and click Set affinity.
  4. Make sure only Cores 0, 1, 2 and 3 are checked. Uncheck everything else and click OK.


Information This must be repeated each time the game is started.

Invisible fonts glitch[edit]

Information An invisible fonts glitch may occur which involves game menu text disappearing.

Fix Instructions

  1. Download the files fonts.dat and fonts_r.dat located here.
  2. Go to the installation folder.
  3. Drag and drop the files into common\data\ in <path-to-game>.

2GB+ VRAM is wrongly recognized[edit]

Fix Force increase video memory[18]

  1. Open <path-to-game>\commandline.txt (create if it doesn't exist).
  2. Put -availablevidmem 2.0 in a new line (or replace 2.0 with your VRAM).

Other information[edit]


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9
Shader Model support 3
64-bit executable No native support


Middleware Notes
Physics Bullet Physics Library, Euphoria
Interface Flash
Cutscenes Bink Video
Multiplayer Games for Windows - LIVE, Rockstar Games Social Club


Information It is strongly recommended to make a backup of any files modifications may replace or amend in the event of corruption.


Information XLiveLess enables modding.
Information XLiveLess disables all multiplayer functionality to prevent cheating.

Custom Music[edit]

Grand Theft Auto IV allows users to play their own music on a custom radio station, Independence FM.[19]

Information Simply place any audio files / folders or create shortcuts in the %USERPROFILE%\Documents\Rockstar Games\GTA IV\User Music folder, and tune into the station in-game.
Information Supported formats are MP3, WMA, M4A. Other formats and extensions are not recognized.
Information QuickTime or iTunes needs to be installed for M4A support.
Information FLAC is not supported. Convert to WMA Lossless to use in-game.
Information Use shortcuts to audio files / folders to save disk space and improve performance.
Advantage Supports High-resolution audio files. Up to 96 kHz / 24 bit.
Advantage Supports Surround audio files. Up to 6 channels.
Disadvantage Monaural audio files not supported.

Command Line[edit]

By creating a file called commandline.txt and saving it to your root installation folder you can alter the way your game runs. If you are using Steam; go to the game in your library, right-click and click Properties, select Set Launch Options... and enter the commands separated by spaces.

The table below describes the majority of commands usable in the command line file.

Command Line Definition Example Usage
width sets the horizontal resolution -width 1280
height sets the vertical resolution -height 720
texturequality changes texture quality low/med/high (0-2) -texturequality 1
shadowdensity adjusts shadows thrown up by car lights (0-16) -shadowdensity 3
renderquality adjusts the render quality of the game (0- 4) -renderquality 3
viewdistance adjusts the view distance (0-99) -viewdistance 25
detailquality adjusts the detail distance (0-99) -detailquality 30
norestrictions removes memory restrictions on graphic settings -norestrictions
novblank removes good ole v-sync -novblank
safemode runs GTA 4 with everything set to as low as you can go -safemode
fullscreen runs GTA 4 fullscreen -fullscreen
windowed runs GTA 4 windowed -windowed
availablevidmem allocates some system ram as additional vram -availablevidmem 1.5
percentvidmem how much vram of your gpu GTA 4 can use, 1.0 will be all of it and 0.5 will be half -percentvidmem 0.5
frameLimit limits your frame rate to the refresh rate -frameLimit 1
refreshrate adjusts the refresh rate (oddly enough) be careful do not set a refresh rate your monitor can't do -refreshrate 60
fullspecaudio enable high-end cpu audio -fullspecaudio
minspecaudio enable low-end cpu audio -minspecaudio
noprecache turns precache off -noprecache
nomemrestrict turns all memory restrictions off -nomemrestrict
benchmark starts the in game benchmark and then quits the game -benchmark
help lists the commands and usage but doesn't look as snazzy as this -help

Performance improvement[edit]

Fix Launch the game with -norestrictions -nomemrestrict parameters[citation needed]

System requirements[edit]

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS)
XP SP3, Vista SP1
Processor (CPU) AMD Athlon X2 64 2.4 GHz
Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8 GHz
AMD Phenom X3 2.1GHz
Intel Core 2 Quad 2.4GHz
System memory (RAM) 1.5 GB 2.5 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 16 GB 18 GB
Video card (GPU) ATI Radeon X1900
Nvidia GeForce 7900
256 MB of VRAM
DirectX 9.0c compatible
ATI Radeon HD 3870
Nvidia GeForce 8600
512 MB of VRAM
DirectX 9.0c compatible
Sound (audio device)
5.1 Channel Audio Card
Information Online play requires log-in to Games for Windows - LIVE.


  4. Patch vs Patch - GTA Forums
  5. [REL|III|VC|SA|IV] Project 2dfx - GTAForums
  6. [HowTo]Downgrade of the steamversion of GTAIV to - GTAGaming Forums
  7. Tested by Blackbird
  8. New 120Hz Games Report
  10. Currently Supported Controllers for GTA IV PC - Rockstar Support
  13. PC Gaming Surround Sound Round-up
  14. Effect of GameSpy Closure on Past Rockstar Titles – Rockstar Support
  15. GTA IV: Error Code RMN20 - Rockstar Support
  16. How to use -memrestrict to fix stuttering - GTA Forums
  17. How do i get over 60 fps in GTA 4 ?? - Steam Community Discussions
  18. Issues with GTA IV showing video cards with over 2GB as under spec – Rockstar Support
  19. Independence FM (User radio) in GTA IV - Rockstar Support