For several days I am successfully upgraded to Windows 10. Contrary to the experience of some of my family members and friends, who got black screens or even a total failure while updating to Windows 10, my upgrade proceeded extreme smothly. And as much Windows 10 inspires me with it’s new features, there still remains a vexed issue. How to install unsigned drivers under Windows 10? (For Windows 8 and 8.1, I had already written a guide.) Since the release of Windows 10, a few steps in the click sequence have changed, so there is this follow-up article now, which describes how to install unsigned drivers on Windows 10. And here’s how you do!
Install unsigned drivers with Windows 10
In general there are two approaches to install unsigned drivers in Windows 10. Either you enable the test mode in Windows or you restart the computer in a certain mode. I will put the test mode alternative on the sidelines for this article, as it has the unpleasant peculiarity, that after activation of the test mode, a label “test mode” and some other information remain permanently on the Desktop. Therefore we want to take a closer look at the “traceless” variant by restarting.
First, the compter must be restarted into the so-called “options menu”. The easiest way to get there is via the “Run”-dialog, which is opened by means of the key combination Win+R. The command you have to enter, to boot into the Options menu is as follows:
shutdown.exe /r /o /f /t 00
Caution: This command starts the reboot process immediately! No ifs, no buts! If you still have programs open, save everything from the stuff you want to save, before you execute the command.
Because nobody likes to executes commands, he does not know, you’ll find the explanation of the individual parameters below:
- shutdown.exe – It’s a Command-Line application which is inclusive with Windows. It does various kinds of restarts and shutdowns.
- /r – means “restart”
- /o – means “the PC should start in the Option menu”
- /f – means “restart directly and close all opened programs immediately”
- /t 00 – shows the time until the restart happens (in seconds). In this case 0 seconds, which equals an immediate restart
After you have successfully rebooted into the “Options menu”, click “Troubleshoot” and then “Advanced options”.
Now click on the “startup settings”-button and the press “reboot”.
After another reboot, you’re at the startup settings page. Here you can choose between various options, which can be entered by pressing the respective number key. For our needs, you have to click option 7 – “Disable driver signature enforcement”. This deactivates the driver check and enables you to install unsigned drivers in Windows 10.
In the last step and after another restart, you are able to install unsigned drivers by using Windows “Device Manager”. Don’t get confused. There still will be a question in the beginning, as you can see in the screenshot above, but nevertheless the installation of the driver will be possible without problems.
One last advice:
Please keep in mind that the functionality of Microsoft’s signed drivers was implemented for a special reason. A bad or broken driver can cause instability and dysfunction of your system. Therefore only install unsigned drivers, if you know the source and/or the publisher and if you are able to evaluate the risk. If you want to be on the “safe side”, simply set an system restore point.