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  1. #1
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    Windows won't let you install unsigned drivers

    I have researched the problem of Windows 8.1 requiring drivers to be signed. Does anyone know of a permanent solution to disable this requirement?

    The only solution I have requires going thru the following steps each time you boot up system:

    Click on the "Change PC Settings" charm
    Go to "Update & Reccovery" section
    Click on recovery option on left side side which takes you to advanced startup section on the right side. Then you click "restart now"

    When computer reboots, choose the Troubleshoot option, then on Advanced Options, then Startup Options. You then must restart computer again.

    On re-boot, you will see a selection to choose from.
    Scroll down to "Disable driver signature enforcement" and select it.

    When the OS comes up, you can now install unsigned drivers.

    However, each time you reboot, you have to go thru the above steps again.

    My only solution is to stay booted up - disconnect internet and allow computer to sleep. This is a real pain.

    Does anyone know of a permanent solution for this?
    Last edited by TeresaRaye; 2015-05-09 at 20:01.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    It should be the same method as that outlined here for the Server version of W8: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/emberger/arc...d-drivers.aspx

    EDIT: It does look like 8.1 is different, try this: http://community.spiceworks.com/how_...-1-2012-2012r2
    Last edited by satrow; 2015-05-09 at 20:06.

  3. #3
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    Thanks Satrow for quick response

    Quote Originally Posted by satrow View Post
    It should be the same method as that outlined here for the Server version of W8: http://blogs.msdn.com/b/emberger/arc...d-drivers.aspx

    EDIT: It does look like 8.1 is different, try this: http://community.spiceworks.com/how_...-1-2012-2012r2
    The first link is the one I posted above and is what I am using. The second one does not work for me. When I enter the commands which are accepted and try to install unsigned drivers, Windows does not give me the option of installing or not installing the drivers.

    Hopefully, someone will soon provide a hack to permanently resolve this problem. It is so frustrating when Microsoft tries to dictate exactly how you may use their OS.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaRaye View Post
    It is so frustrating when Microsoft tries to dictate exactly how you may use their OS.
    Just taking a leaf out of Apple's book.

    cheers, Paul

  5. #5
    Super Moderator RetiredGeek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaRaye View Post
    It is so frustrating when Microsoft tries to dictate exactly how you may use their OS.
    I'm no Microsoft apologist but you do have to look at it from their perspective sometimes. Just think what a support nightmare it is trying to offer support to millions of users when each can have an untested driver on a different hardware configuration. The permutations boggle the mind! Forcing the use of signed drivers at least lowers the numbers a bit.
    May the Forces of good computing be with you!

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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaRaye View Post
    The first link is the one I posted above and is what I am using. The second one does not work for me. When I enter the commands which are accepted and try to install unsigned drivers, Windows does not give me the option of installing or not installing the drivers.

    Hopefully, someone will soon provide a hack to permanently resolve this problem. It is so frustrating when Microsoft tries to dictate exactly how you may use their OS.
    A rogue driver has the potential to take your system down, with all the negative consequences that may result from that. IMO, it's not Microsoft that is to blame, as they have the responsibility to ensure that your system will be as stable as possible, but the manufacturer that didn't sign the driver and distributed it.
    Rui
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  7. #7
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    The problem I have with Microsoft is that they do not give you an option to download unsigned drivers. they could give a warning that it is unsigned and proceed at your own risk.

    A lot of expensive, reputable software, comes with unsigned drivers.

    I bought a Qosmio X75-A7170 eight months ago. Everything was great. About 2 months ago, a Microsoft update caused my audio to disappear!. It will not recognize most of the Toshiba drivers which appear to be unsigned. These drivers came with the computer. However, the only one affected is audio. Microsoft does not have a signed driver that will allow it to recognize my factory installed audio devise.

    While trying to resolve the above, I checked my 2 hard drives. Microsoft, without notification to me or obtaining my permission, changed the drive types from primary, etc. to one drive being logical and one is GPT. Disk 1 (which was Disk 0) is now named (MBR) and all partitions are Logical type and my Recovery, System, and OS is on Disk 2 and named GPT(which was Disk 1) and all partitions are GPT type

    In one of my attempts to correct audio problem, I backed up everything onto an external drive and tried to do a recovery to factory condition. Windows could not find the Recovery drive. The Recovery drive is there, but Windows will not recognize it.

    SO, I now have an image system backup of both drives on an eternal drive in case of a disaster crash. However, I will still have the "unsigned drivers" problem for which I have a work-around which is time consuming. The solution is in my first comment. Each time you boot, you have to go through the work-around.

    Until someone discovers a permanent hack to the "unsigned drivers" problem, I just disconnect from internet and put my computer to sleep.

    I appreciate all the input from everyone. Fingers crossed that some "geek" will find a permanent solution to the problem in near future and post it on internet.
    Last edited by TeresaRaye; 2015-05-10 at 13:06.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by TeresaRaye View Post

    I bought a Qosmio X75-A7170 eight months ago. Everything was great. About 2 months ago, a Microsoft update caused my audio to disappear!. It will not recognize most of the Toshiba drivers which appear to be unsigned. These drivers came with the computer. However, the only one affected is audio. Microsoft does not have a signed driver that will allow it to recognize my factory installed audio devise.
    The moment you noticed the update caused your audio issue, you should have reverted the update. It could take some time to identify it, but it could have been done.

    I am even more cautious and I take a full image backup (using a 3rd party imaging app - Acronis True Image), before I allow Windows to update. Like this I always have a stable point to go back to, in case Windows Update causes any issues.
    Rui
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  10. #9
    jwoods
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    I'm not sure where you're getting the audio driver, but a check of the Toshiba Support site for the Qosmio X75-A7170 shows that you can filter for drivers specifically for Win 8.1, 32 and 64-bit...

    http://support.toshiba.com/support/m...ext=1200007471

  11. #10
    Super Moderator bbearren's Avatar
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    I haven't done this in a while, so I'm working from memory. This method won't work with packaged self-extracting driver installation ".exe" files. The ".inf" file for the driver must be "unzipped" from the package and selectable.

    Go to Computer > Properties > Device Manager and Right-click the device for which you wish to install the unsigned driver. Select Update Driver Software. Next click "Browse my computer for driver software". Click "Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer". Click the "Have Disk..." button. Browse to the location of your driver of choice, select the ".inf" file and click OK. You should get a warning that the driver is unsigned, and asked if you want to install it anyway.
    Create a fresh drive image before making system changes, in case you need to start over!

    "The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Savvy?"—Captain Jack Sparrow "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware.
    Unleash Windows

  12. #11
    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    Or just right click on the .inf file and select install.

    Jerry

  13. #12
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    The procedures you are using are correct: unfortunately however, the boot procedure has changed as you've already posted; more unfortunately it appears that there isn't a permanent fix.
    --- How does the computer run when you don't go into Driver signature enforcement?
    --- It's probably too late now but can you try a System Restore?
    --- This is beyond my capabilities but maybe you can find out how to run a startup script to do what you want it to do.

    The computer is only 8 months old: do you have a warranty you can use to have your computer factory restored?

  14. #13
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    Driver signing started precisely because vendors were tasked with creating them and doing a very poor job. At one point one-third of all problems reported to Microsoft were traceable to driver problems. And since MS brought the drivers into Ring 0 for performance reasons, driver failures became a very serious matter.

    At this stage vendors should not be creating unsigned drivers. Not for any reason I can think of. Contact those vendors and get a signed driver. If they complain, tell them you cannot run their unsigned driver.

  15. #14
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    @BHarder "Contact those vendors and get a signed driver. If they complain, tell them you cannot run their unsigned driver." That's an excellent point

    @TheresaRaye Have you contacted Toshiba? The computer is only 8 months old. It's Toshiba's fault the drivers are unsigned.

  16. #15
    jwoods
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    I have two different Toshiba laptops running Win 7, and both have Conexant audio drivers that are signed.

    The OP hasn't logged in since the last post on 5/10, but as mentioned previously, you can filter for drivers specifically for Win 8.1, 32 and 64-bit, on the Toshiba Support site.

    I would be a little surprised that Win 7 audio drivers are signed (as least for Conexant), but not for Win 8/8.1.
    Last edited by jwoods; 2015-05-13 at 03:38.

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