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what you will require:

widcomm drivers (search the forums and locate the ones of your choice in this
guide, i am using version obtained from:
widcomm patcher v2 (obtained from:
optional: your original bluetooth drivers
step 1 (preparation)

first things first, if you have some bluetooth drivers already installed, you
should find out who the manufacturer of your device is. this is because
widcomm/broadcom 'broke' compatibility with other manufacturer's devices from
version onwards. if you are not sure, i would recommend downloading just to be sure

next step is to obviously uninstall your current drivers (if you have any), which
can be done from the add/remove programs bit in control panel. also, remove any
bluetooth device drivers by using device manager in system (found in control
go to control panel, double click on 'system'
click on 'hardware' tab, then 'device manager'
in there, expand any bluetooth devices and right click and select 'uninstall'
(repeat for all bluetooth)
now you may unplug your bluetooth device while we proceed.

step 2 (preventing windows native bluetooth stack)

then, you should remove prevent the windows native bluetooth working:

make sure that you have enabled viewing of hidden/system files:

press windows key + 'e' key at the same time (windows explorer pops up)
click on tools (menubar) > folder options... > view (tab):
enable 'show hidden files and folders'
uncheck 'hide extensions for known file types'
uncheck 'hide protected operating system files (recommended)' - you might get a
warning, click yes/ok
click on ok to exit.
now, go to c:\ drive, windows directory, 'inf' folder, in there you will find two
files, bth.inf & bth.pnf.

rename both of these to bth.inf.old & bth.pnf.old (in each case, confirm with the
pop up box). (left click to highlight the file and press f2 to edit the filename)

now restart your computer.

step 3 (getting your usb bluetooth drivers ready)

the next step is to find out if you have the original drivers for your bluetooth
adapter. if you do, get them and on the cd, look for a file called 'btwusb.inf'
which contains the information required to install your bluetooth adapter later
on. if you get that file, copy it into the win32 & win64 folders of the widcomm
drivers folder. it should ask you if you want to overwrite, select yes.

if you don't have your original bluetooth manufacturer drivers and you can't get
them off the internet, then here is what i did:

first of all plug in the adapter and let windows discover the device and let
windows try to install it, but it will fail. uncheck the 'don't ask me next time'.
go to control panel, double click on 'system'
click on 'hardware' tab, then 'device manager'
in there, locate the unknown (yellow) hardware device, expand it and double click
on it.
click on the 'details' tab and in there you should see a line similar to this:
the numbers might be different, but what we are interested in are the
vid_***x&pid_***x (***x = 4 digit number).

make a note of them and then in the widcomm drivers folder, under win32 folder,
open the btwusb.inf for editing (prefereably in notepad). now we will manually add
our device.

first things first, in the btwusb.inf file, do a quick search for your vid number
(e.g. 13dd) and see if there are already matching entries for your device - make
sure that the vid number and pid number are both correct.

if so, then you don't need to edit the file. to search (if you are in notepad,
press 'ctrl' (key) + 'f' key at the same time and type in your vid number and
click on 'find next')

if you haven't located your device, then proceed:

there are three lines to add:

-in [controlflags] section:

-add a line: excludefromselect=usb\vid_***x&pid_***x (change the ***x with the
numbers from your device)

-in [widcomm.ntx86.5.1] section:

-add a line: %****.devicedesc%=btwusb, usb\vid_***x&pid_***x ; my bt usb dongle

where the **** is a string or single word in capitals (e.g. your manufacturer's
name itech) and the ***x's are the same numbers as before (vid & pid

finally, in [strings] section:

- add a line: ****.devicedesc="my bt usb dongle"

where **** must be the same word used in the previous step (again in capitals) and
the bit between the quotes can be anything you like - it will be used to display
whatever your bt adapter is called in device manager. try to stick with just
spaces and letters.

now you can save the file and proceed with installation.

step 4 (installing the widcomm drivers)

now you are ready to install the widcomm drivers, once again, under the folder,
double click on setup.exe and the process should begin. confirm whenever it pops
up with the 'warning, not digitally signed, continue?' box and mid way through
when it says no bluetooth adapters found, just click cancel to proceed anyway.
once it has finished, you must restart the computer in safe mode to patch the
bluetooth drivers.

step 5 (patching the widcomm drivers)

restart your computer and while it's booting up (you can see the black bios screen
where it detects your cpu, hard drives, etc), press the f8 key repeatedly, maybe
once every half a second, keep doing this and instead of windows loading up, you
will see a list of options. select the option at the very top 'safe mode' and
press enter. on entering safe mode, select 'yes' to continue.

now locate the widcomm_patcher_v2.exe program and double click on it. you will see
three little dots next to 'btstackserver.exe', click on those three dots and then
navigate to (c: )local disk > program files > widcomm > bluetooth software. in
there you will see a file 'btstackserver.exe'. double click on it and the file
should begin patching. (select ok to continue)

next, another file appears, do the same as above, but this time the file is called
bttray.exe. again, click ok once it's been patched.

the third file to be patched is found in (c: )local disk > windows > system32.
it's a .dll file, but it's the same process as the above two steps. the forth step
is also in the same location (another .dll file).

once this is done, you may reboot your computer again.

step 6 (installing your bluetooth usb drivers)

you should notice that you have a 'my bluetooth places' desktop icon as well as a
little bluetooth icon in the system tray (that's red). we are nearly there. all we
need to do now is to plug in your bluetooth device and windows should pop up with
a 'new hardware found' box. click on advanced install and uncheck everything
except for 'search this specific folder' (not the exact words), and click on
browse. the in the new window, navigate to c: drive > program files > widcomm >
bluetooth software > bin, then click on ok and it should begin installing your
device automatically.

once that is done, you should notice that your bluetooth icon in the system tray
has now turned from red to white. you can double click on the icon and it should
pop up with a wizard to guide you through the initial bluetooth setup process. now
you can start using pairing and using your bluetooth devices!

some faqs

q: i can't be arsed to read this whole thing, is there a shorter way?

a: probably, but this is what i did and it works.

q: where can i get the latest widcomm drivers from?

a: search the forum. (tip: search for word 'widcomm' in this bluetooth forum)

q: i don't have/lost my bluetooth drivers, can i still use this guide?

a: yes, check second part of step 3

q: i've done everything, but bluetooth seems to be flaky and i'm having problems
with my bluetooth devices.
a: check who the manufacturer of your bluetooth device is by right clicking on the
bluetooth icon in the system tray, select 'bluetooth configuration' and then click
on the 'diagnostics' tab. in there, it will tell you the manufacturer of your
bluetooth device. if it says 'cambridge silicon radio' (csr for short), then it's
best to stick with the widcomm drivers versions or lower. later
versions are known not to work very well with csr manufactured devices as well as
others. reinstall with another version of the widcomm drivers.

q: i can't get into safe mode!

a: hit the f8 button a bit quick multiple times as your computer is booting up
(right from the very second you push the power on button). the menu should appear.

q: i can only see btwusb, not btwusb.inf?

a: make sure that 'hide extensions for known file types' is turned off as per step
2 instructions.

q: how do you open .inf files for editing in notepad?

a: right click on the file and select 'open with...' in the list, scroll down to
notepad, left click on it and then set if you want notepad to open .inf files all
the time, then select ok. notepad should open the inf file now.

q: there is a licence patcher (widcommlicensepatcher), what does it do and how do

i use it?
a: i don't know how to use it, maybe someone can contribute. however, i know that
in effect it's supposed to authorise your usb bluetooth device to use the widcomm
drivers, as outlined in step 5. you can do either or, you do not need to do both
to get things to work.