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Windows update disables SafeDisc DRM in Windows Vista/7/8

Earlier this year, it was discovered that Windows 10 doesn’t support SafeDisc or SecuROM DRM software, which also means that games or software using those forms of DRM won’t run without some tinkering. Microsoft did this for security purposes as these forms of DRM aren’t entirely secure. Now, a similar update has disabled SafeDisc DRM on Windows Vista, 7 and 8 as well.

The security update began rolling out earlier this month to those using older versions of Windows. Here is the update’s description: “In addition to the changes that are listed for the vulnerabilities that are described in Microsoft Security Bulletin MS15-097, this security bulletin addresses a defense-in-depth update for the secdrv.sys driver, a third-party driver. The update turns off the service for the secdrv.sys driver. This may affect the ability to run some older games.”


SecuROM protected games and software will presumably be able to run as normal, since only SafeDisc makes use of the secdrv.sys driver. Since there are people out there who would still like to be able to play some of their games without needing a crack, Microsoft has provided a workaround, though it also wants to make it clear that using it will make your PC less secure.

The update switches off the secdrv.sys driver but it doesn’t remove it- to turn it back on you just need to go to your command prompt and enter: ‘sc start secdrv’, then to stop it, you can use the command: ‘sc stop secdrv’. Problem solved.

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KitGuru Says: If you happened to be playing any games using SafeDisc DRM on an older version of Windows, and you rely on automatic updates, then you can get your games working again. If you don’t feel like entering command prompts, then there may be cracks out there, though circumventing DRM falls in to some legal grey area, as ridiculous as that is in this case. 

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