You may receive an error message when you try to install a device driver on a computer that is running an x64-based version of Windows

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Article ID: 896454 - View products that this article applies to.
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SYMPTOMS

When you try to install a device driver on a computer that is running an x64-based version of Microsoft Windows, you may receive the following error message:
The specified location does not contain a compatible software driver for your device. If the location contains a driver, make sure it is designed to work with the Windows x64 Edition operating system.

CAUSE

The behavior typically occurs when a device driver is not written for an x64-based version of Windows. This behavior can also occur if the device driver is correctly written for an x64-based version of Windows, but the installation .inf file is incorrectly decorated.

For more information about .inf file requirements for x64-based computers, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/driver/install/64INF_reqs.mspx

RESOLUTION

To troubleshoot this problem, use one or more of the following methods:
  • Verify that you are using a driver that is designed for an x64-based version of Windows.
  • Obtain new or updated drivers that have correctly decorated .inf files. Visit the Windows Update Web site or the device manufacturer's Web site to obtain these drivers.
  • Manually decorate the .inf file. However, we do not recommend that you manually decorate the driver .inf file. Instead, we recommend that you contact the device manufacturer for an updated device driver.
You cannot modify a 32-bit driver .inf file for compliance with .inf file decoration requirements. x64-based versions of Windows require 64-bit driver files.

STATUS

This behavior is by design.

MORE INFORMATION

For more information about .inf file decoration requirements for 64-bit versions of Windows Server 2003, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
888728 A description of the device driver .inf file decoration requirements for Windows Server 2003 x64 Editions and Windows XP Professional x64 Edition

Technical support for Windows x64 editions

Your hardware manufacturer provides technical support and assistance for Microsoft Windows x64 editions. Your hardware manufacturer provides support because a Windows x64 edition was included with your hardware. Your hardware manufacturer might have customized the Windows x64 edition installation with unique components. Unique components might include specific device drivers or might include optional settings to maximize the performance of the hardware. Microsoft will provide reasonable-effort assistance if you need technical help with your Windows x64 edition. However, you might have to contact your manufacturer directly. Your manufacturer is best qualified to support the software that your manufacturer installed on the hardware.

For product information about Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/64bit/default.mspx
For product information about Microsoft Windows Server 2003 x64 editions, visit the following Microsoft Web site:
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/64bit/x64/editions.mspx

Properties

Article ID: 896454 - Last Review: October 11, 2007 - Revision: 3.6
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard x64 Edition
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional x64 Edition
Keywords: 
kbtshoot kbprb KB896454

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