Register with Windows Hardware Developer Program

Ready to get started publishing Windows drivers?’s EV Code Signing certificates offer Windows 10 kernel-mode code signing and an instant SmartScreen reputation boost, all for as low as $240.00 per year. They are delivered on secure YubiKey FIPS USB tokens with two-factor authentication.


Time needed: 30 minutes

This how-to will show you how to register with the Windows Hardware Developer Program. Registration with the Hardware Developer Program is required to sign both kernel-mode and user-mode drivers in Windows 10. To get started, you will need an EV code signing certificate and access to a global administrator account for your company’s Azure Active Directory.

  1. Navigate to Hardware Developer Program registration page.

    Navigate to the Hardware Developer Program registration page. Review the requirements, then click the Next button.
    Registration page

  2. Sign into Azure AD.

    Next, you must sign into your company’s Azure Active Directory with a global administrator account. Click the Sign into Azure AD button and login to the account.
    Sign in to Azure ID

  3. Enter your account details.

    Enter your account country, company display name, and personal contact info, then click the Next button.
    account details

  4. Make sure you have an EV code signing certificate.

    You will need an EV code signing certificate from an authorized CA (such as to register. Make sure you have your certificate ready before going on to the nest step. When you are ready, click the Next button.
    Get a code signing certificate

  5. Download the signable file.

    Click the link to download the signable file now.
    Download a signable file

  6. Make sure signtool.exe is installed.

    signtool.exe is part of the Windows SDK. Download and install the SDK if you haven’t already.
    Download the signing tool

  7. Sign the file.

    Sign the file you downloaded in the previous step with your EV code signing certificate. For instructions on signing code with signtool.exe, please refer to’s how-to, Using Your Code Signing Certificate.
    Code sign the file

  8. Upload signed file.

    Drag your signed file to the labeled area on the page, or use the browse your files link to navigate to it.
    Upload signed file

  9. Success!

    If everything has gone correctly, you should see a page showing information from the EV code signing certificate you used to sign the file provided by Microsoft. Review the information for correctness before completing your registration.
    registration - review

  10. Troubleshooting

    If there is a problem with your signed file, you may be shown a message that “Your certificate’s CA root cert is not in the approved list of root certs.” If this happens, you should make sure that your code signing certificate is from a Microsoft-approved provider of EV code signing certificates. If you have multiple code signing certificates installed on your computer, you should make sure to specify an EV one to use for signing. Note that if your certificate is installed on a secure hardware token and you are not prompted to enter your PIN, it is a good sign that an incorrect certificate has been used for signing.
    Certificate not in approved list of root certs

  11. Next steps.

    Now that your organization is signed up with the Hardware Developer Program, you can start assigning roles to staff members and submitting drivers. Please see Microsoft’s documentation on Managing User Roles, Hardware Submissions, and Attestation signing a kernel driver for public release for more information.’s Kernel-Mode Code Signing FAQ also includes answers to common questions about signing kernel-mode drivers.

If you’re not sure which type of code signing certificate you need, please read Which Code Signing Certificate do I Need? EV or OV? If you have any other questions, please contact us by email at, call 1-877-SSL-SECURE, or just click the chat link at the bottom right of this page. You can also find answers to many common support questions in our knowledgebase. And, as always, thank you for choosing!

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