Disable Hardware Acceleration

Is the performance of your Outlook and other office application slow and laggy while typing? There are a number of suggested solutions out there to improve performance, but I have found one easy setting that can be changed that makes a vast improvement. This setting is called Disable Hardware Acceleration and it can be found in the setting in all of your Office applications. The idea of Hardware acceleration is to move all graphics and text rendering from the Central Processing Unit to the Graphics Processing Unit, thereby getting better performance.

Example of high CPU usage and GPU usage. Open your Task Manager and look at gpu-engine. You will notice: GPU 0 – 3D

In this instance, it is mostly caused by Hardware acceleration.

What is Hardware Acceleration? “Hardware graphics acceleration in Office enables the computer hardware to perform graphics functions to increase performance so that making a user in an enjoyable experience”

Though hardware acceleration is good in most situations, it can sometimes cause issues where your Microsoft Office product will freeze or crash. In those cases, you can turn off hardware acceleration within your Office product.

How to Disable Hardware Acceleration

1. Open any Office app for example Word, and create a blank document, click FILE.

2. Next, click Options in the following screen:

3. Moving on, in the below-shown window, select Advanced in the left pane. Then in the right pane, scroll down and look Disable hardware graphics acceleration under the section Display. Check this option and click OK.

You may now close Office (Word2013 and reboot the machine. After restarting the system, you’ll find the issues you were facing in Office is resolved now.

If you work in a corporate environment and you would like to make this change for everyone in your organisation you may want to deploy the change in Group Policy. The setting can be found under Office \ Miscellaneous.

Select “Do not user hardware graphics acceleration” : Enabled

You can also look at making a change in the registry.

DWORD: DisableHardwareAcceleration
Value: 1 to disable

Where did this option go?

Microsoft is removing this option from some of their apps, and you may not be able to find this option. Try the Options in other Office applications, I think it remains in some and the setting works on all Office apps.

If this is the case, unfortunately you will need to find an alternate solution to your Office pereformance issues.


Hardware acceleration is great, but It can cause some serious lag in your Office apps. Disabling it, if you have the option still, will resolve it.

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