What is VulkanRT? Is it a Virus …Should You Remove it?

Perhaps, you cannot remember the number of times you have come across folders containing a program file known as VulkanRT on your device. Other Windows users have also come across the folder in their Installed Programs and Program Files (x86) folder on their Windows 10.   As most people claim, the program enters their system without their permission or consent. That is the key reason they believe that it is a malicious program or spyware that can affect the performance of their computer system. We have provided this guide to help you understand what it does on your computer and whether you need it. 

So, what is Vulkanrt?

Vulkan Runtime Libraries (Vulkanrt) is a cross-platform API designed to improve the performance of your 3D applications such as interactive media and games that run on your Windows computer.  The program is also available for Linux operating system. The program was developed in the year 2014, but it was announced officially in the year 2015 as Game Developer’s Conference

The program helps balance between the GPU and CPU computation usage. Actually, it comes as part of your graphics driver or gets installed when updating your system’s GPU driver. Keep in mind that CPU/GPU manufacturers such as Nvidia, Intel and AMD are the facilitators of its installation. Developed by Khronos Group (an American non-profit consortium), is designed to improve the performance of your computer.  Khronos Group has also developed many other open APIs such as OpenGL, OpenXR and WebGL.

Is Vulkanrt a virus?

The first that will come to your mind once you come across VulkanRT for the first time is that it is a virus, malicious file or simply a worrisome program. Do not panic because that is not the case. In fact, VulkanRT is a lawful and useful program intended to improve the performance of your computer device. 

AMD announced that the API would help improve the performance of many games, therefore, giving most gamers a great experience. Do not try to install it because it is intended to improve your 3D gaming. The API has a great effect on various games such as Wolfenstein and DOOM. It enhances the performance of games and graphics. Today, Vulkanrt is supported and applicable to all the graphic cards available in the market. Unfortunately, most users do not have adequate knowledge about it and its application.  

The purpose of Vulkanrt on your computer device

The primary purpose of Vulkanrt on your computer device is to reduce overheads in regards to performance and to give you more control over your GPU. The tool also helps reduce the usage of CPU on your computer when completing performance-intensive processes. That prevents the maxing out of performance cores, which can result in a shutdown.

Apart from reducing the CPU usage by computer applications that require it, it ensures even distribution of the workload on multi-core CPUs. That way, one core will do not all the work while the others remain idle. One of the things you will love about Vulkanrt is that it works more like DirectX 12. 

However, DirectX 12 can only run on Windows 10 computers. Vulkan Runtime can run on many operating systems such as Linux, Windows, iOS, Mac OS and Android. Some experts believe that Vulkanrt is a successor of OpenGL but it does not replace it completely. OpenGL will be a better choice in some scenarios. 

A quick summary of the key features of Vulkanrt

  • Primarily used on mobile devices and graphic cards to improve the overall performance of the graphics-oriented applications, including video games
  • Unlike the DirectX 12, the tool works on many OS platforms
  • It lowers the CPU workload, therefore, reducing the driver overhead. It does that through batching that improves the working of available CPU cores
  • Offers better and faster performance with code generation and GPU optimization. It has compact driver packages, it is easier to maintain and requires only a little space on your device.
  • In multi-core processors, Vulkanrt allows scaling. That is unlikely to happen with OpenGL 4 and the Direct 3D 11, which works solely on single-core processors
  • Vulkan Runtime Libraries form part of AMD drivers. They provide better and faster performance.

Where to find the Vulkanrt file on your computer

Perhaps, you would want to know whether Vulkanrt is already running on your computer or you need to install it. To check whether it exists, use one of these two methods. 

Method 1: If you are a Windows 8 or 8.1 OS user, click on Start. Type in “Control Panel” without the quotes and open it. On the tab that pops up, search for “Programs and Features” and open it. You will find the full list of programs running on your computer system. 

Method 2: When using Windows 10 computer, go to the search option on the taskbar and type in “Apps and Features” without quotes and hit the Enter button. After the “Apps and features” load, you will have the list of the pre-packaged applications and the software tools you have already installed. Using the search form, check whether Vulkanrt is already running on the computer. 

VulkanRT, should I remove it

No, do not uninstall it if it is not causing any problems on your computer. It might not have immediate effects on the operation of your computer after uninstalling it but you will realize its purpose when running your video editing software tool or playing a game. Some games like Dota 2, Talos Principle, Unity, Steam and Cry Engine require the tool to run more efficiently.

If you have already uninstalled it but you would want to reinstall it, do not worry. The installation is simple. All you need to do is reinstall your graphics drivers and update them to the latest versions. That will install the Vulkanrt again.


Vulkanrt commonly appears during the update process for AMD or NVIDIA GPU drivers. So, you should never panic when you come across it. The developers created it to allow the smooth running of games and other applications on your computer. The tool might also come with the recently downloaded games because they need it to run properly. If you do not have it on your computer, consider installing it.

Recommended Articles