A plug and play error message may appear when a user inserts a smart card on a computer that is running Windows 7

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Article ID: 976854 - View products that this article applies to.
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SYMPTOMS

When a user inserts a smart card into a smart card reader on a computer that is running Windows 7, Windows 7 tries to download and install the smart card minidrivers for the card by using Plug and Play services. If the driver for the smart card is not available at any of the preconfigured locations such as Windows Update, Windows displays an error message in the notification area that states that the driver software was not found.

CAUSE

All smart cards require additional software to work in Windows unless there is an inbox driver that lets the user use the card without installing additional software. The Windows Smart Card Framework was improved in Windows 7 to enable automatic download for smart card minidrivers from Windows Update or from other similar locations, such as a WSUS server, when the smart card is inserted into the reader. All smart cards that successfully pass the logo requirements, as published by the Windows Logo Program, benefit from this feature.

However, if the software that is required to use a smart card in Windows is not logoed or is of a type that differs from a minidriver, such as a PKCS#11 driver, a custom CSP, middleware, or an ActiveX control, the automatic download option fails because Microsoft certifies only smart card minidrivers. Therefore, if the user inserts a card for which a custom CSP is not already registered, the user receives an error message that states that the driver software is missing for the smart card device even though the user can use the smart card through additional software that was installed on the user's computer from a custom installation.

WORKAROUND

You can safely ignore this error message. If you do not want to receive this message in the future, disable the driver detection for this smart card. To do this, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, type devmgmt.msc, and then press ENTER to start Device Manager.
  2. In Device Manager, right-click Smart Card under Other devices, and then click Disable.
  3. When you see a Smart Card dialog box, click Yes.
Important You must repeat these steps for any new smart card that you plug into the card reader on this computer.
Note This is a "FAST PUBLISH" article created directly from within the Microsoft support organization. The information contained herein is provided as-is in response to emerging issues. As a result of the speed in making it available, the materials may include typographical errors and may be revised at any time without notice. See Terms of Use for other considerations.

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Article ID: 976854 - Last Review: August 16, 2011 - Revision: 3.4
APPLIES TO
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Enterprise N
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Home Premium N
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Professional N
  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Windows 7 Starter N
  • Windows 7 Ultimate
  • Windows 7 Ultimate N
Keywords: 
kbsurveynew kbprb KB976854

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