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I found a way to fix the Flight Simulator “stuck on loading” issue for PC users

Content of the article: "I found a way to fix the Flight Simulator “stuck on loading” issue for PC users"

Hi gamers,

I wanted to play Flight Simulator 2020 with the Xbox Game Pass but it didn't want to start. After downloading the files, the game was stuck on the blue loading bar (about one third of it being complete) or on the "checking for updates" screen. I looked online for fixes but didn't find anything that worked. I came up with a fix that works, and there are two good news:

  • you don't have to re-download the 100+ Gb of data
  • you can play the game even if it's located on another disk than the Xbox app, contrarily to what some articles were saying.

The issue

1. Description

The game launches, but there is a loading screen that is never complete. Either that, or the "checking for update" screen is displayed forever.

2. Cause

For me, the issue was that my Flight Simulator data was stored in another directory than my user data. When I went to C:/Users/, Flight Simulator was not in my personal directory.

My fix is about this specific use case. Reading some posts online, I figured that some people had the same issue.

What actually caused this issue was the fact that my Windows admin username had an accent. My Windows admin account was named Clément, and unlike every other software I've ever installed, Flight Simulator decided to store my data not in C:/Users/Clément but under C:/Users/Cl@~ment. This is of course a Unicode issue that replaced the accent with some other characters. In 2020, every piece of software overcomes this issue but the Flight Simulator developers must have let it slip.

3. What Happens

When you launch the game, it goes to fetch some information in your User directory. However, since it checks another directory, it doesn't work out. If you delete the false directory (in my case C:/Users/Cl@~ment), the game will simply recreate it.

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The Fix

The fix is quite simple: you have to uninstall the game (you don't have to delete the 100 Gb of data, just go to the Xbox / Microsoft store app and uninstall it) and rename your Windows Account to a name that has no special character.

1. Uninstalling the game

You have to uninstall the game. Open the Xbox App or the Microsoft store. Go to the Flight Simulator page, right-click on it and choose "Uninstall". Normally, this should only delete the launcher and keep the huge data files on your hard drive.

2. Rename your user account and folder

Unfortunately, you can't just re-name your User directory. There is a workaround that allows you to do that (by searching for it, right-clicking it and renaming it) but it's not enough: the game will look for the environment variable containing your name, and this is not related to the name of the user directory. So you have to rename your Administrator account.

I found an

that explains how to rename your account. In case it gets deleted from YT, allows me to resume how to do it:

  • Open the command prompt as administrator (go to the search line at the bottom left corner of your desktop and type cmd or powershell. Right click on the result and choose "run as administrator")

  • Type the following: net user Administrator /active:yes and press enter. Note: if you don't use Windows in English like me, you have to replace "Administrator" by the word in your language (for me, Administrateur).

  • The prompt should tell you "the command completed successfully"

  • Go to the start menu at the bottom left corner and click on your user picture. Log out from your profile. Log in as Administrator, that should now appear among the users of your computer.

  • Windows will ask you to configure the profile, just choose no to everything until you end up on the desktop. If Edge opens, close it.

  • Right-click on the start button at the bottom left and choose "Computer Management". In the left column, go to Local Users and Groups > Users. Right-click on your old profile (the one you want to rename) and choose a name that includes no accent or special characters. You can close this window.

  • Open the File Explorer and go to your Users folder (for instanced C:/Users. Right-click on your old user folder and rename it with the same name that you chose above. (If you didn't create the Administrator profile, you wouldn't be able to do this).

  • Go to regedit by pressing Win+R and typing "regedit" and pressing enter. Go to the following directory: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionProfileList. Find the entry that was created today by looking at the Data value in the third column of the main window. Double-click on it and rename it to the same name that you've chosen.

  • Log out of Administrator by going to the start menu, clicking on the user icon and choosing "sign out". Log in to your previous account that has now been renamed.

  • If you want, you can deactivate Administrator by opening the command prompt and typing net user Administrator /active:no.

  • Reboot the PC just in case.

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3. Reinstall the game

You have to reinstall the game like you've done it in the first time, from the Xbox app or the Microsoft store. Once done, launch the game. After the logos, the first screen will ask you to select the data path. Select the folder in which your data files are located. It doesn't matter if it's on another drive, contrarily to what some articles said.

The game will check the directory you've put, and notice that the game data is already present there. If not, it will simply download the 120 Gb of data to the folder you've chosen.

And voilà! The game should work. At least, this did the trick for me.


For me this work. I now have to buy better hardware to run FS but that's another story. My conclusion: always check unicode or encoding formats when you're about to deploy an app.

Thank you for reading, I couldn't find this fix online. I tried to contact Microsoft but they haven't answered yet. I hope I was able to help some people. If there's something you don't understand or if my English is bad, feel free to comment.


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