Getting the Windows Vista/7 64-bit to play with unsigned drivers

When Microsoft introduced Windows Vista 64-bit and later Windows 7 64-bit they implemented a security feature that will only allow signed drivers to work with the operating system. This is a way to ensure that only the proper driver can be installed with the hardware device to ensure stability and security but for regular consumers this can be a big hassle. A 64-bit operating system is needed to address more than 4GB of RAM (32-bit operating systems can only address a maximum of 4GB) so if you have less than 4GB RAM I would stick with 32-bit as the hassles of 64-bit isn’t worth it.

In order to get unsigned drivers to work use Driver Signature Enforcement Overrider. I managed to get it working with the bmobile’s 1st Generation 3.5G HSDPA Modem as show below

bmobile's 1st Generation 3.5G HSDPA modem

bmobile’s 1st Generation 3.5G HSDPA modem

Just follow the following steps:

  1. Disable User Access Control (UAC) (Vista | Windows 7)
  2. Run DSEO and click the “Enable Test Mode” button
  3. Click the “Sign a File” button and specify the location of the driver / sys file (location of the file can be found in “Device Manager”, device’s “Properties”, “Driver” tab, click “Driver details”)
  4. Reboot the computer and things should work

Now I wouldn’t recommend disabling UAC as it is a form of security that would prevent possible malware but if you need to use the hardware and don’t want to spend money to get compatible hardware or don’t want to downgrade to a 32-bit operating system of Windows then I guess it’s one of the choices you have to make.

Windows 7 Home Premium Retail Version Promotion

So there’s a Windows 7 Home Premium Retail Version Promotion for B$168 that Concepts and Netcom seems to be offering. Today is Concepts last day while Netcom is only for order, you can’t pick it up now so you’ll have to wait if you do order. The following is one of these Home Premium retail pack. Notice that it is valid for Distribution and Activation in Southeast Asia only.

Windows 7 in Brunei

With Windows 7 being released in Brunei tomorrow I tried contacting several computer shops here in Brunei (CF King, Concepts, Netcom) to ask about pricing and availability. It seems that they have no information and are waiting upon Microsoft distributor, Tech One Global for the hard information. The typical response from the retailers is that they are not sure on when they are getting the stock and will only known in the coming days of the price and availability.

I called Tech One Global and was told that they cannot disclose any information yet as Windows 7 is not officially released yet. He said that there will be a standard pricing throughout Brunei and information will be giving to retailers starting tomorrow. There is no official event to launch Windows 7 so end users will just have to wait for the prices tomorrow. Will keep the Brunei community updated on any news regarding the prices and upgrade paths. But in the mean time check out QQeStore prices below (strange enough, when you click on the item there is no price available *shrug*):

Windows 7 Prices:

  • Home Basic: B$258.00
  • Home Premium: B$298.00
  • Professional: B$458.00
  • Ultimate: B$488.00

Windows 7 prices from QQeStore

Update 1 [22nd Oct 1020AM]: Called Tech One Global and they mentioned that Home Basic, Home Premium, Professional and Ultimate will be available to end users. No family pack is available in Brunei and upgrades may come later. So consumers are left with the expensive retail prices for now (whatever they may be).

It seems that there was a briefing for retailers/resellers yesterday but as of this time Netcom, CF King and Concepts are still unsure of retail date and prices for Windows 7. Netcom did mention that there was a staff training on Monday which could mean they are selling it next week.

So does that mean the country manager is wrong as it states in
the news article:

WINDOWS 7, the successor to Microsoft’s Windows Vista operating system (OS), will go on sale in the Sultanate in tandem with the official international release on Oct 22, the country manager of Microsoft Brunei said yesterday.

Update 2 [22nd Oct 1038AM]: It seems Yappe at least has the prices though it’s not available for pick up now, just on order basis. Prices are:
Home Basic: B$230
Home Premium: B$264
Professional: B$409
Ultimate: B$430

Update 3 [26nd Oct 11AM]: Seems that with Concept’s advertisement in the Borneo Bulletin today that the shops actually have Windows 7 available for pickup. Called them up and only Netcom is currently not selling Windows 7.

Windows 7 prices that are available to be bought now (prices in B$)

Home Premium Professional Ultimate
Yappe

$264 Retail

$279 OEM

CF King $249 Retail
(includes installation)
Concepts

$198 OEM

$258 Retail

$258 OEM

$378 Retail

$338 OEM

$398 Retail