Windows Usernames Stopping Some From Playing GTA V


You can play Grand Theft Auto V for PC right now. Provided you’re not at work or school that is, and that the game is actually letting you launch or even install it. Before lighting torches and coming up with abuse to hurl at Rockstar, however, know that a fix is already underway and that a temporary solution has been provided.

Rockstar Support (via PC Gamer) reports that some users are seeing an error message that says “the Rockstar update service is unavailable (code 1).” The offending cause is surprisingly simple and unexpected: Windows usernames.

“We have identified an issue where players with Windows usernames that include characters not found in the table at the bottom of this page will likely run into difficulties when attempting to download, install, or play GTAV. We are currently working on a fix for this issue.”

The valid characters are strictly alphanumeric, that is A–Z and 0–9 without any diacritical marks and the like. Chances are most people are in the clear but if you’re affected and the problem hasn’t been fixed by the time you read this, here is the official workaround.

Note that renaming your Windows user account will not work.

  1. Create a new Administrator User Account.
  2. Only “letters A to Z, a to z or numbers 0-9 from the basic roman alphabet” allowed.
  3. Restart your PC and log in using the new account.

Here are Microsoft’s guides if you need more detailed instructions: Windows Vista, Windows 7, and Windows 8.1.

Those who purchased Grand Theft Auto V digitally and didn’t start pre-loading have another, far more basic problem to face: the 60GB install size. You can probably imagine what the download size for something that humongous is probably like. On the bright size, think of those high-resolution textures just waiting.

Keep in mind that this is launch day, and PCs are such a varied operating environment that we’ll likely hear about more problems affecting some users soon.

Not all is doom is gloom though, so here’s the first-ever video made in the Rockstar Editor by 8-Bit Bastard. If there’s a single reason to want to own GTA V on PC, this would be it. And mods. Probably mods. Think of the shenanigans.

Grand Theft Auto V is available through Steam for SG$74.90.


Ade Putra

Ade thinks there's nothing quite like a good game and a snug headcrab. He grew up with HIDEO KOJIMA's Metal Gear Solid, lives for RPGs, and is waiting for light guns to make their comeback.