Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Driver broken, can't uninstall or overwrite

  1. #1

    Driver broken, can't uninstall or overwrite

    So I installed win8 RP yesterday and ran into a problem installing the very first driver -- the network adapter driver. I got an error saying that the installation had failed, but when I looked at the device in device manager, it did have a driver installed. however, the driver was damaged and couldn't allow the device to connect to any networks. Running the network connection trouble shooter tells me there's something wrong with my driver.

    I tried uninstalling the driver but the uninstaller just runs continually (for over four hours) until I finally have to end task it. I tried overwriting the driver but I get a time out error after between 5 and 15 minutes.

    I tried refreshing the system, which deleted the graphics driver, but not the wifi driver.
    I tried reinstalling from the pc settings panel, which deleted the graphics driver but not the wifi driver.

    I just tried reinstalling using a usb key, but it says I have the wrong version of windows -- running in compatibility mode for Windows 7 gave me the same error.

    I saw one hint on another forum about deleting the driver from the registry, but I don't know how to do that.

    Any suggestions?

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2

    Ok, so I tried this:

    First you need a good search tool, like agent ransack.

    Once you have a good search tool, search your entire C : \ WINDOWS folder for all files that contain:


    Organize the results by date. Starting with the most recent, open each file and read through it. These are just text files and can be read in a wordpad or notepad. Usually the comments right at the top of the file will tell you what it is.

    Once you find the right file, cut and paste it into a safe temporary location, such as C : \ temp. You can delete it later when everything is working. Now you need to find the matching PNF file. Say you just cut and pasted a file called "oem43.INF", well now you need to search for "oem43.PNF" and move that to the c:temp folder also. Once these files are moved, reboot and install your hardware.

    Dont stop after just one set. Search for "oem*.pnf" and look at the dates. That will tell you when they were installed.
    source: Remove Broken Driver - AnandTech Forums

    But trying to install the driver gives me this error: Windows found driver software for your device but encountered an error while attempting to install it: The system cannot find the file specified.

    I thought that maybe I had inadvertently deleted a file out of my driver files, but I reextracted the driver so it would be complete and get the same error.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    This still isn't solved. I downloaded the driver from three different sites to see if one or two of the drivers themselves were broken. I reinstalled windows several times. I manually deleted the drivers, then uninstalled what was left of them -- which was the only way I could use the uninstall function in device manager without having it crash -- and still the network adapter was broken.

    I finally went out and got a USB mini network adapter. Hopefully the full version of eight will fix this problem for me.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

Driver broken, can't uninstall or overwrite
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