A common error many of the Minecraft players face is the Minecraft OpenGL error. It shows on your game’s player chat as “OpenGL Error: 1281 (Invalid value)”. It ends up being unpleasant for most users because of its constant spam alerts in the chat.
However, it does not take too much effort to be fixed and is not fatal to your computer. But before we get into the solutions, let us talk about what OpenGL is and what its connection is with Minecraft.
OpenGL is an application program interface program that allows better rendering of your game, it removes the load on your GPU by rendering only the images that the user is directly viewing.
What’s different between Minecraft and OpenGL is; Since a majority of the graphics cards support OpenGL, this particular game comes with the OpenGL option preselected. You do not get to choose whether you want to play your game with OpenGL or not.
Why does the OpenGL Error 1281 happen?
While in some users’ case, the error is not a major issue (other than the spamming alerts).
In other cases, it has been reported to cause black screens and make the game actually unplayable. From what we have gathered from users, the error can potentially occur because of the following reasons:
- Outdated Graphics card Drivers: Although the most obvious reason, most of your graphics related errors are caused by outdated drivers, this one is no different.
- OpenGL incompatibility with some graphics cards: If you have a comparatively older computer system, there is a high chance that your graphics card does not support OpenGL.
- Incompatibility with the installed Mods: Some of the installed modifications may be causing conflict in your game. You might have to go through them one by one to pick out the one that is.
- Conflict with High-Performance Shaders: Your high-performance shader packs might be incompatible with some of your modifications (most likely a dimension mod).
- Outdated OptiFine: OptiFine is a Minecraft based game optimization tool. If you have an outdated version of OptiFine (or even one with a lot of errors). Your Minecraft may be showing errors because of it.
- Potential Java issues: Minecraft uses java by default, any outdated or faulty file may be the cause of the error you are seeing.
How do you Fix the Minecraft OpenGL error?
The causes of the error may range from being very obvious to very discreet. But trust us when we tell you that this error is not a problem and can be easily fixed.
Just go through all our solutions below one by one, and you might just find the one that works for you. If all else fails, you do have the option of reinstalling the game from scratch:
#1 Update all your Windows or your graphic card drivers
Updating windows and downloading the latest drivers of the graphics card has been known as the most common solution to this error.
To update your windows all you have to do is:
- Open “Windows Settings” by pressing Win+I.
- Navigate to “Update & Security”.
- Go to “Windows Update” (1) and hit “Check for updates” (2) and your windows will be updated.
If your graphics drivers are not present on your windows update, you are going to have to download them manually. To do that, go to your driver manufacturer’s official website and look for the latest available versions of your device-specific drivers.
#2 Turn off Show GL Errors
If your Minecraft is not showing any noticeable issues, you do not necessarily have to look for a fix. You can simply just disable the Show GL Errors from the game’s setting. To do that all you have to do is:
- Launch Minecraft and go to options.
- Click on video settings and then navigate to others
- Click on video settings and then navigate to others
- Click on Other.
- On the bottom right, you will see “Show GL errors: ON”, click on that to set it to OFF.
- Save your settings.
Launch Minecraft again and check whether you are seeing the error or not. You will most likely not see the error.
#3: Change in-game Video Settings
Before going to the more complicated fixes, try to tweak the in-game video settings to see if something changes. Some settings may work for your version of the game and may stop showing the OpenGL error message.
Although lowering your graphics is most likely going to make your playing experience less engaging.
Try to lessen the render distance, disable the VBO, lower the in-game resolution, change your fps, modify clouds, shadows, etc.
#4: Remove all the Shaders
Shaders add visual appeal to the usual block-like style of the game. But there are times when your shaders show some sort of visual conflict with the game modifications, which in turn causes the OpenGL error.
There have been extreme cases where the player faces a black screen in addition to the error being shown, making the game very unstable.
Removing shaders has worked for most of the users that have different shader packs installed. You might have to give up on some visual appeal, but your game will resume working smoothly.
If you are still reluctant about removing all of your shaders. You can try disabling them one at a time to pinpoint the exact one causing the errors.
If the error still persists, your problems might be mods and not shaders.
#5: Turn off your Mods
Mods, just like shaders, are your game’s extras. But unlike shaders (that are largely visual), mods are custom in-game items that you can download and add. These items range from blocks, mobs, tools, and even custom food.
So, if solution 4 has not worked for you. Your game is likely bugging because of mod incompatibility. The fix is quite simple and similar to the previous solution. All you have to do is disable all of your mods and launch the game to see if you are still seeing the error message.
Then you can individually go through all your mods to identify which one is faulty.
#6: Update your Java Version
Minecraft, like many other massively successful services and applications, uses java coding. Everything in Minecraft including modding is done by java-coding. This brings us to our next solution.
Minecraft, by default, comes with java files. But if, for some reason, your java files are missing, outdated, or faulty. Your Minecraft will not run properly.
You are going to have to download the files manually from Java’s official website to fix the problem. Just follow the on-screen prompt step by step after you have downloaded them and you will have the latest version of Java in no time.
Do the essential restart of your system and launch Minecraft to see if the error has stopped coming up.
If the issue persists, try out the next fix.
#7: Update your OptiFine
OptiFine, as we mentioned before, is a third-party Minecraft optimization tool. It allows your game to have advanced in-game video settings, different from the game’s original version (known as the Vanilla version among players).
The tool enhances the game’s video settings and allows users to have a better and faster experience, all while using different mods and shader packs. It optimizes the game accordingly and increases its fps considerably.
So, what do you do when OptiFine becomes the problem instead of the solution? You check the root of the problem. And the root of the problem in most cases is an outdated or incompatible version of OptiFine.
To fix this, you need to check the version of OptiFine currently installed in your computer. Update it if you are using an outdated one (the latest one is going to be on OptiFine’s official website) and try opening Minecraft again to see if it has worked.
#8: Reinstall Minecraft altogether
If none of the solutions above has worked for you, uninstalling and reinstalling the game is going to do the trick for sure. You will not only fix the OpenGL error. You are going to fix other problems that might cause potential errors in the future.
(Save a copy of you game files beforehand to prevent progress loss)
We do hope that one of our solutions has worked for you. The Minecraft “OpenGL error 1281” may not be very worrying, but it sure is inconvenient for the average player. Do leave us a comment below if you have any queries and we will be sure to get back to you.