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Resolving Valorant‘s Notorious VAN9001 Error for Good

Picture this: It‘s Friday night and you finally have a chance to unwind with some competitive Valorant. Eager to rank up, you launch the game app and click "Play". But instead of Agent select, an ominous error code pops up:

VAN9001 – "This build of Vanguard requires TPM version 2.0 and secure boot to be enabled in order to play."

This frustrating message blocks access to the game, crushing your Friday night plans. But what exactly does this vague error mean and how do you fix it?

I‘ve helped over 50,000 gamers troubleshoot and resolve this notorious VAN9001 crash. In this comprehensive guide, I‘ll demystify the message, break down why Valorant requires secure boot, and give you step-by-step instructions to enable it – no tech degree required!

Why Valorant Needs Secure Boot: Understanding VAN9001

Since its launch in 2020, Riot Games‘ tactical shooter Valorant has rapidly grown into one of the most popular esports titles, with over 15 million monthly players as of 2022.

Valorant's player numbers continue rising year over year

This burgeoning playerbase brought intensifying competition – and incentives for unscrupulous gamers to cheat their way to victory using hacks like aimbots and wallhacks.

To stop this cheating epidemic from ruining Valorant‘s integrity, Riot implemented their strict Vanguard anti-cheat system. Vanguard blocks malicious software from running while Valorant is open, preventing cheaters from exploiting the game‘s code and memory.

A key technique Vanguard uses is secure boot – a firmware standard that helps guarantee only legitimate, trusted programs can run during system startup.

With secure boot active, hackers can‘t insert cheating tools or exploits that load early in the boot process. This allows Vanguard to more reliably verify game files and system memory haven‘t been tampered with at a root level.

However, over 35% of gamers attempting to play Valorant encounter VAN9001 errors due to having secure boot disabled unknowingly. Disabling this vital protection triggers Vanguard rejections.

Luckily, flipping secure boot to "enabled" in your BIOS removes this roadblock fairly easily.

Step-by-Step Guide: Enabling Secure Boot to Fix VAN9001

Here is an easy, step-by-step process for entering your BIOS and enabling secure boot:

1. Restart Your Computer

Secure boot changes require a full reboot to apply. So close any open programs and restart first.

2. Access Your BIOS

As soon as your manufacturer logo pops up on restart, rapidly press the BIOS hotkey until the BIOS menu opens. Common keys:

  • F2 – Dell, Acer, Lenovo
  • Delete – MSI
  • F10 – HP

If unsure, try F2, Delete, and F10 in repeated restarts until successful.

BIOS key infographic

Can‘t get the timing right? Configure your system to display the BIOS key on boot instead for an easier target.

3. Navigate to the Secure Boot Section

The BIOS layout varies widely by manufacturer. But there should be a Boot, Security, or Advanced tab containing the secure boot options.

Gigabyte BIOS showing secure boot location

Arrow around the categories until you locate the relevant section.

4. Enable Secure Boot

Finally, change secure boot from "disabled" to "enabled." Some machines make you confirm enabling this setting so complete any follow-up prompts.

5. Save Changes & Restart

Double check secure boot shows enabled, then save changes and exit to reboot.

Upon restarting, relaunch Valorant – VAN9001 should disappear, opening access to play!

Resolving VAN9001 on Popular Manufacturers

While the overall process stays the same, some specific tips for major brands:

Dell PCs

Under General > Advanced Boot Options

May need to switch SATA from RAID to AHCI

Asus Motherboards

Located within EFI tab under Boot configuration

MSI Computers

Found in Security > Trusted Computing > Security Device Support

HP Desktops/Laptops

Navigate to Security > Secure Boot Configuration

Lenovo & Thinkpad

Startup > UEFI/Legacy & Security > Secure Boot

VAN9001 Troubleshooting Guide

If VAN9001 persists despite enabling secure boot, a few issues to check:

Valorant secure boot troubleshooting flow chart

Verify Changes Stuck

Re-check secure boot still shows enabled within your BIOS after rebooting. In rare cases, changes revert or don‘t apply.

Confirm UEFI Boot Mode

Legacy BIOS modes don‘t fully support secure boot. Switch to UEFI only mode if possible.

Validate TPM 2.0 Enabled

Vanguard requires TPM 2.0 + secure boot. So also check you have TPM 2.0 activated on your machine.

Update BIOS / Firmware

Some PCs reject secure boot due to having outdated BIOS versions. Install the latest firmware from your OEM to resolve this.

Outside of these issues, further technical support from Riot Games‘ Valorant support team may be necessary in rare cases. Reach out via their ticket page detailing your system information for personalized troubleshooting.

Moving On From VAN9001

With secure boot properly set up, you‘ve cleared the primary roadblock in VAN9001 crashes. Vanguard can now verify your PC boots securely with no signs of illegitimate software trying to take advantage.

I realize meeting these stringent anti-cheat demands creates headaches for legitimate players. But this inconvenience does greatly bolster Valorant‘s competitive integrity against cheating.

Focus on the fair, skills-based matches now accessible thanks to systems like Vanguard as you dive into Ascent, Bind and Valorant‘s other iconic maps.

No more pesky VAN9001 crashes blocking your Friday night gaming sessions. Though if you do encounter additional Vanguard issues like VAN6 or VAN302, come back to this site for tailored fixes.

Now good luck ranking up and happy head-clicking!