Gamemaker Studio not opening due to FIPS

If you are experiencing issues with Gamemaker Studio not opening it may very well be related to having FIPS cryptography enabled in Windows 7.

My copy of Gamemaker Studio would not open on one of my computers with Windows 7 installed. It installed and updated just fine. But when I went to open it nothing happened. I would just double-click the icon and nothing. Right-clicking the icon and selecting Open still produced nothing. Right-click the icon and Run as Administrator….nothing. I tracked down the trace.log for Gamemaker. Most likely it will be at C:\Users\YOURUSERNAME\AppData\Local\GameMaker-Studio. I opened the file trace.log using notepad and found that it was hitting an unhandled exception whenever I tried to open it.

The error read:

System.Reflection.TargetInvocationException: Exception has been thrown by the target of an invocation. ---> System.InvalidOperationException: This implementation is not part of the Windows Platform FIPS validated cryptographic algorithms. at System.Security.Cryptography.MD5CryptoServiceProvider..ctor()

I knew this was a lot to throw into a Google search, but I thought, “What the hell.” A quick search indicated that this is an exception thrown when you have FIPS encryption enabled on your system. Apparently Gamemaker will not run on a system with FIPS encryption enabled.

Now, the computer I was using at that time employed group policy that enables FIPS cryptography. I have administrative rights to this computer, so I should be able to disable FIPS. You can do this many ways. The easiest is to create the registry edit as I have outlined below. You may be able to hit Start and type secpol.msc to open the security policy snap-in. Then you can go to Local Policies > Security Options then you can select System cryptography: Use FIPS compliant algorithms… from the right-hand pane. You can see in my screenshot below that I have already disabled FIPS but had I taken this route to do so, the option would have been grayed out. If your selections are not grayed out like mine, it is as simple as selecting disabled and clicking Apply and OK. You should now be able to run Gamemaker.

 

Gamemaker FIPS Encryption

 

The easiest way to fix this error and the one I recommend is a registry file. Since my FIPS is a group policy and will likely be re-enabled every time I reboot my computer, a registry file will make it a simple fix every time. Just open a blank notepad document and paste the following:

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Lsa\FipsAlgorithmPolicy]

"Enabled"=dword:00000000

Then click save the document as fipsFix.reg and keep it in your documents. To run it, double-click it and it will warn you then run it if you allow. Now every time I go to use Gamemaker on this computer all I have to do is run the registry file first.

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