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Colin McRae: DiRT 2

From PCGamingWiki, the wiki about fixing PC games
Colin McRae: DiRT 2
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 cover
macOS (OS X) Feral Interactive
OS X Feral Interactive
EGO 1.0
Release dates
Windows December 1, 2009
macOS (OS X) September 9, 2011
Metacritic 89
Monetization One-time game purchase
Modes Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Controls Direct control
Genres Racing, Simulation
Vehicles Automobile, Off-roading
Art styles Realistic
Series Colin McRae Rally
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 on HowLongToBeat
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 on IGDB
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 on MobyGames
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 on Wikipedia
Colin McRae Rally 1998
Colin McRae Rally 2.0 2000
Colin McRae Rally 3 2003
Colin McRae Rally 04 2004
Colin McRae Rally 2005 2004
Colin McRae: DiRT 2007
Colin McRae: DiRT 2 2009
DiRT 3 2011
DiRT Showdown 2012
Colin McRae Rally (2014) 2014
DiRT Rally 2015
DiRT 4 2017
DiRT Rally 2.0 2019
DIRT 5 2020


For Games for Windows - LIVE on Windows 8 or later, install the latest Games for Windows - LIVE software.

Key points

The game features full keyboard support but an Xbox 360 Controller is recommended.
Includes benchmark.

General information

Steam Community Discussions


Source DRM Notes Keys OS
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
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SecuROM DRM disc check.
Disc check (requires the CD/DVD in the drive to play)
macOS (OS X)
Games for Windows Marketplace (unavailable)
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Steam (unavailable)
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Install the demo with steam://install/44300
All Windows versions require Games for Windows - LIVE DRM.[Note 1]
No longer available due to licensing reasons.[2]
Demo is available. The demo will install GFWL which can be uninstalled afterwards and replaced by dropping a replacement xlive.dll in the installation folder. The demo does not require an internet connection or Steam.

Essential improvements


The latest version is Patch 1.1 (March 2010, ~350 MB).

Skip intro videos

Replace video files

Apply the DiRT 2 intro skip.

Play without Games for Windows - LIVE

Play without GFWL[citation needed]
  1. Download the replacement xlive.dll.
  2. Extract into <path-to-game>


This cuts most online content.
This works for almost all GFWL games.
Previous made saves can not be read and are treated by the game as corrupt saves (the prompted creation of a new save may overwrite the player's progress).
This disables connection in LAN multiplayer.

Disable bloom

Modify persistentdatarender.xml
  1. Go to <path-to-game>\frontend\ and open persistentdatarender.xml in any text editor.
  2. Search for <Param name="bloomAmount">*.*</Param> and change *.* to 0.0.
  3. Save persistentdatarender.xml file and play the game.

Game data

Configuration file(s) location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\DiRT2\hardwaresettings\hardware_settings_config.xml
macOS (OS X)
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/12840/pfx/[Note 2]

Save game data location

System Location
Windows %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Games\DiRT2\savegame\
macOS (OS X) ~/Library/Application Support/Feral Interactive/DiRT 2/Savegame
Steam Play (Linux) <Steam-folder>/steamapps/compatdata/12840/pfx/[Note 2]
The files in %LOCALAPPDATA%\Microsoft\XLive\ contain your unique offline profile ID.

Save game cloud syncing

System Native Notes
Requires enabling backup of the Documents folder in OneDrive on all computers.
Steam Cloud


Graphical settings
Graphical settings
Graphical settings (continued)
Graphical settings (continued)
HUD Options
HUD Options

Graphics feature State WSGF Notes
Widescreen resolution
4K Ultra HD
Field of view (FOV)
See Field of view (FOV).
Toggle with Alt+ Enter.
Borderless fullscreen windowed
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anisotropic filtering (AF)
See the glossary page for potential workarounds.
Anti-aliasing (AA)
2x-8x MSAA, 8x QCSAA.
Vertical sync (Vsync)
Not true Vsync.
If enabled, locks to 60 Hz.
60 FPS and 120+ FPS
Instant replay and flashback are affected by framerate.
See Run the game at screen refresh rate.
High dynamic range display (HDR)
See the glossary page for potential alternatives.

Field of view (FOV)

Default chase (close) camera and FOV.
Default chase (close) camera and FOV.
Chase (far) camera with a vertical FOV of 60. A background texture is temporarily missing at this FOV.
Chase (far) camera with a vertical FOV of 60. A background texture is temporarily missing at this FOV.
Higher FOVs can expose occasional texture pop-in glitches.
Use Dirt3FovChange[3]
  1. Perform a search in the installation folder for the cameras.xml files.
  2. Select them all (fifty in total) and open their properties.
  3. Uncheck the read-only box and click OK.
  4. Download Dirt3FovChange.
  5. Extract the files from the archive into any folder.
  6. Run Dirt3FovChange.exe as administrator.
  7. Manually point Dirt3FovChange to your DiRT 2 installation folder.
  8. See the Notes section below for what the settings do, adjust their values to your liking and click Start.
  9. If it asks if you're sure you want to run binXml.exe, uncheck the box for Always ask before opening this file and click Run.
  10. Launch the game and test your settings in a race. If you want to further adjust the settings:
    1. Exit the race and Alt+Tab to Dirt3FovChange.
    2. Click Restore to restore the default settings. Tweak the values you previously entered and click Start.
    3. In DiRT 2, start a new race to test your settings. Repeat until you're happy with the result.


  • Vertical FOV: a larger number will translate into a wider field of view.
  • Adjust FOV for: selects the in-game camera or cameras you want to edit.
  • Head Offset: affects the position of the head-cam (cockpit view). A modification of 0.1 will yield a noticeable change. It is to be noted that the point of view can be placed outside of the car.
    • X: affects the lateral position. A positive value will move the point of view to the left.
    • Y: affects the vertical position. A positive value will move the point of view upward.
    • Z: affects the front/back position. A positive value will move the point of view closer to the dashboard.
  • Head Tilt Change: affects the vertical angle of the camera. Compared to the position values, the tilt value works on a different scale: a modification of 1 will yield a barely noticeable change.
    • A positive value will tilt the camera up.


Keyboard and mouse State Notes
Mouse acceleration
Mouse sensitivity
Mouse input in menus
Mouse Y-axis inversion
Controller support
Full controller support
Keyboard required for editing the names (player, car-setup)
Controller remapping
Controller sensitivity
Controller Y-axis inversion
Additional information
Button prompts
Controller hotplugging
Haptic feedback
Simultaneous controller+KB/M
Mouse in general not available; Not possible to remap both inputs, one will be reset


Audio Options
Audio Options

Audio feature State Notes
Separate volume controls
Speech, Music, Effects and Engine
Surround sound
Closed captions
Mute on focus lost
See Mute on focus lost.
EAX support
Royalty free audio


Language UI Audio Sub Notes
Only available in Polish retail copy. For digital versions download this.

Mute on focus lost

Set mute in background[citation needed]
  1. Install Special K by following the Special K Unofficial Guide.
  2. Start the game and press Ctrl+ Shift+← Backspace to toggle Special K's Control Panel.
  3. Expand "Window Management" and "Input/Output Behavior"
  4. Enable "Mute Game" under "Background Behavior" and close the Control Panel.
  5. Press Ctrl+ Shift+O to toggle Special K's On-Screen Display.


Online features require a Microsoft account (optional for offline play).

Multiplayer types

Type Native Players Notes
Local play
LAN play
Online play
8 DirtNET service has been discontinued, making Ghosts in Time Trials and Tournaments unavailable, discontinuing the achievements attached to these.

VR support

3D modes Native GG3D Notes
Nvidia 3D Vision
Officially supported game, see official vorpx game list.
Devices Native Notes
Supports: Yaw, Pitch, Roll, X, Y, Z.

Issues fixed

Run the game at screen refresh rate

Fullscreen mode only runs at 60 Hz, even if the in-game option is set higher than that.
Set screen refresh rate[citation needed]
The flashback uses frames to calculate time. With a shorter amount of time available as the framerate goes higher, the feature becomes less useful. Around 120 FPS this makes it impossible to rewind out of a terminal damage crash.
  1. Install Special K by following the Special K Unofficial Guide.
  2. Start the game once and close it to allow the configuration file of Special K to be created.
  3. Open <path-to-game>\dxgi.ini or %USERPROFILE%\Documents\My Mods\SpecialK\Profiles\dirt2_game.exe\SpecialK.ini depending on the installation method you used.
  4. Change RefreshRate=-1 to RefreshRate=0 under [Render.FrameRate].
Set screen refresh rate[citation needed]

For Nvidia owners with G-Sync display

  1. Turn on Vsync in game options and turn off Vsync in Nvidia driver
  2. Turn on G-Sync for DIRT 2

Other information


Technical specs Supported Notes
Direct3D 9.0c, 11
Executable 32-bit 64-bit Notes
macOS (OS X)


Middleware Notes
Audio OpenAL, Rapture3D
Cutscenes Bink Video
Multiplayer Games for Windows - LIVE, Quazal

System requirements

Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) XP, Vista, 7
Processor (CPU) Intel Pentium D 3.0 GHz
AMD Athlon 64 X2
System memory (RAM) 1 GB
2 GB (Vista)
Hard disk drive (HDD) 12.5 GB
Video card (GPU) Nvidia GeForce 6800
ATI Radeon X1500
DirectX 9.0c compatible
Sound (audio device) DirectX compatible
macOS (OS X)
Minimum Recommended
Operating system (OS) 10.6.7
Processor (CPU) Intel 2.0 GHz
System memory (RAM) 2 GB
Hard disk drive (HDD) 8 GB
Video card (GPU) 128 MB of VRAM


  1. Games for Windows - LIVE DRM features: SSA activation, supports local profiles.
  2. 2.0 2.1 File/folder structure within this directory reflects the path(s) listed for Windows and/or Steam game data (use Wine regedit to access Windows registry paths). Games with Steam Cloud support may store data in ~/.steam/steam/userdata/<user-id>/12840/ in addition to or instead of this directory. The app ID (12840) may differ in some cases. Treat backslashes as forward slashes. See the glossary page for details.


  1. DiRT 2 - Games for Windows (archived) - last accessed on 19 August 2022
  2. Verified by User:Mars icecream on 2016-11-25
    Email received from Codemasters customer service.
  3. NoGripRacing Forums - View Single Post - Changing FOV
  4. Overclockers UK Forums