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Get a code signing certificate

Before you can establish a Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard account, you need to get a code signing certificate to secure your digital information. This certificate is the accepted standard for establishing your company’s ownership of the code you submit. It allows you to digitally sign PE binaries, such as .exe, .cab, .dll, .ocx, .msi, .xpi and .xap files.

Step 1: Determine which type of code signing certificate you need

  • Microsoft accepts standard code signing and extended validation (EV) code signing certificates from Symantec and DigiCert. If you already have an approved standard or EV certificate from one of these authorities, you can use it to establish a Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard account. If you don’t have a certificate, you’ll need to buy a new one.

  • The table below provides the details of the Certificate requirements for each of the dashboard services.

 

Dashboard service/permission Code signing certificate requirement

Bug management

Standard or EV

DDC – Driver Distribution Center

Standard or EV

Device Metadata

Standard or EV

Report Data

Standard or EV

Submissions (including HCK/Download Signatures)

Standard or EV

WRD – Windows Remote Debugging

Standard or EV

LSA

EV

UEFI

EV

Note: UEFI will enforce this requirement beginning August 15, 2014

Code signing certificates for Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard

There are two types of code signing certificates available today:

Standard Code Signing

  • Provides standard level of identity validation

  • Requires shorter processing times and lower cost

  • Can be used for all Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard services except LSA, and UEFI file signing services.

  • In Windows 10 Technical Preview for desktop editions (Home, Pro, and Enterprise), standard code signing cannot be used for kernel-mode drivers.

Extended Validation (EV) Code Signing

  • Provides the highest level of identity validation

  • Requires longer processing times and higher cost due to an extensive verification process

  • Can be used for all Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard services, and is required for LSA and UEFI file signing services

  • In Windows 10 Technical Preview for desktop editions (Home, Pro, and Enterprise), all kernel-mode drivers must be signed by the Windows Hardware Dev Center Dashboard and the Windows Hardware Dev Center Dashboard requires an EV certificate.

Step 2: Buy a new code signing certificate

If you don’t have an approved standard or EV code signing certificate, you can buy one from one of the certificate authorities below.

Standard code signing certificates

Extended validation code signing certificates (required for UEFI, kernel-mode drivers, and LSA certifications)

Step 3: Retrieve code signing certificates

Once the certificate authority has verified your contact information and your certificate purchase is approved, follow their directions to retrieve the certificate.

noteNote
You must use the same computer and browser to retrieve your certificate.

Next steps

  • If you’re setting up a new Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard account, follow the steps in Establish a new company.

  • If you’ve already set up a Windows Dev Center hardware dashboard account and need to renew a certificate, follow the steps in Update a code signing certificate.

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