The crystalline disordered phase obtained by mechanical alloying of elemental 75 at. % Ni and 25 at. % Al powders has been investigated. The stability of this phase with respect to the thermal reordering process leading to the L12 structure has been analyzed by means of x-ray diffractometry, scanning electron microscopy, and differential scanning calorimetry. Atomistic simulations on an Ni3Al model, reproduced via molecular dynamics using a many-body potential, have been used to interpret experimental data. The ordering transformation takes place in an extended range of temperature (from 320 to 600 °C) and occurs simultaneously with the release of internal strain. Numerical simulations performed under different conditions show that the activation energy of the Ni-vacancy migration mechanism responsible for the ordering process depends on the local state of strain, thus suggesting an explanation for the considerable lowering of this energy in samples obtained by ball milling.