SECDRV.SYS Not Loading in Windows 10; this will break thousands of older games.

Hello,

I have discovered an unfortunate problem with Windows 10.

Many games from the early-mid 2000's used Macrovision's SafeDisc (version 2) as a means of copy protection. At game startup, Windows loaded SECDRV.SYS to verify an original game disc was in the drive, after which the game would start.

When you try to run ANY game which uses this SafeDisc form of copy protection in Windows 10, the following happens:

 - You get an error window that tells you to log in with Administrator Privileges and to try again. This happens on any account, even those with Administrator access. The game fails to start.

 - If you then set "Run as Admin" compatibility mode on the game's startup file, the message disappears, but the game doesn't start.

 - Keeping a window open for C:\WINDOWS\SYSWOW64\DRIVERS shows SECDRV.SYS appearing at the moment you try to start the game. Based on its size, it appears to be the file that is present on the game disc (tested across several games), even though I see no disc activity and cannot find the file elsewhere on my system.

 - The Windows event log shows that SECDRV.SYS failed to load.


 - This happens both with an upgraded install (Windows 8.1 > Windows 10) and with a fresh Windows 10 install, with one of the games being installed immediately upon the fresh install completing.

 - On my Windows 64-bit 8.1 system, C:\WINDOWS\WINSXS has a folder called amd64_macrovision-protection-safedisc_31bf3856ad364e35_6.3.9600.16384_none_4e6b3758913c9240 with a SECDRV.SYS in it, presumably the one that ships with Windows. Windows 10 had such a folder in early builds, but it is missing from the release build. It appears SafeDisc support is missing entirely.

OTHER TESTING I HAVE DONE:

 - I updated one of the games to a version that no longer required the CD check, and it started immediately and ran perfectly once the check was removed. However, this is possible only with a very limited number of games, or resorting to fixes that violate the game's EULA or put the user's system security at risk.

 - I tried disabling driver signature verification and installing one of the games again; same problem.

 - Multiple compatibility modes; same problem. XP (Service Pack 3) mode and / or Run as Administrator mode make the error message go away, but the games still fail to launch.

SIGNIFICANCE:

Unless this is fixed in Windows 10, a massive catalog of older games will cease to function in Windows 10 for the simple reason that they cannot pass the SafeDisc copy protection check. I am accustomed to some games breaking with every new version of Windows as technology progresses (for example, the loss of the ability to run 16-bit programs in 64-bit Windows), but this seems to be an unnecessarily harsh change.

|

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

Civilization IV Complete has the same error...

26 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

Freelancer has the same issues and that's a Microsoft game! (an old one true)

6 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

I have the free version of AOL so I don't know if it makes a difference . Also the problem I'm having is different in that if I click on "mail " it simply drops me off and asks me to sign in again over and over !! I never get to mail in the AOL home page to begin with !! . Interesting enough,  I can read and send AOL from the start window " mail " ( blue mail box )  as well as the Google search menu bar( aol ) at the top of the google search page . As for Susans fix , My AOL  desktop  doesn't even look like her example and there is no " startup-settings "  to click on the bottom right ?? Just for the heck of it I decided to jump ahead just to see if I could see " aol desktop 9.7 "  or any AOL file for that matter on the C: drive files / program (x86) and I don't find AOL in any files !!! . Obviously AOLl is buried somewhere in my C: drive otherwise I wouldn't even be able to get on it . Thinking of going back to windows 8 because not only is there this aol problem but windows 10 is not compatible with my MS flight simulator 2004 .

4 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

Reply In reply to deleted message
I recommend avoiding the link in the post just above mine (which begins "I had a similar problem and finally solved it by purchasing a new key from"); a "key" would not solve the problem described in this thread, which is a driver support issue. It's probably a malware link.

6 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

Yes, come on Microsoft.  It's been 2 weeks since the Windows 10 release and this issue was reported almost immediately.  At least let us know your position on this.  Other posts indicate that this driver was present in pre-release versions of Windows 10.   Strange that it would be removed in the RTM release.

My issue occurs on a new laptop running Windows 10 right out of the gate.  Even paid extra for an external DVD drive just to run these games.  It is very frustrating that Microsoft appears to have dropped support for this.  I understand if it is simply a bug in the new OS but then MS should acknowledge the problem at least so people know where they stand on the issue.  Their silence on these forums is maddening.

I have three more machines to update at home but will certainly wait to see how MS responds to this.

7 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

I would really appreciate a reply from Microsoft on this one.

I appreciate its probably now an unsupported driver, but it in the spirit of ensuring compatibility it really should be addressed.

By not addressing this situation Microsoft are essentially leaving people with 2 options

  • not upgrading to Windows 10
  • downloading a "cracked" pirated copy of the software it is causing problems with

I don't think they should be encouraging either.

3 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

Please fix this. I love everything about windows 10 it's a great release but I will have to stay on windows 7 if we don't get this driver back.

6 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

I googled secdrv.sys. It does have vulnerabilities that could be used by a virus. Perhaps this is why it was not included in Windows 10.

However, Microsoft should reply to this thread if it has a reason it wasn't included.

5 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

Yes but those vulnerabilities were fixed in 2007. It has been deemed safe to be in windows all the way up to 8.1 so I don't see why it is blocked from loading in windows 10.

2 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

well that's good to know. site I saw didn't mention was fixed. so why doesn't Microsoft respond?

2 people found this reply helpful

·

Was this reply helpful?

Sorry this didn't help.

Great! Thanks for your feedback.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback, it helps us improve the site.

How satisfied are you with this reply?

Thanks for your feedback.

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

* Please try a lower page number.

* Please enter only numbers.

 
 

Question Info


Last updated May 13, 2021 Views 240,206 Applies to: