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 How to Update or Reinstall PunkBuster in v3.0+ 


Private First Class
Posts: 208
Joined: 27 Sep 2009

      Posted: 19 Oct 2009 15:21 Profile Germany


I got PB issues too, but it started today. Until now I didnt get any problems.

My configuration:

these problems are really annoying.
I hope they fix it as soon as possible.

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Non-US Veteran
Non-US Veteran
Posts: 1681
Joined: 29 Oct 2002

      Posted: 04 Nov 2009 22:05 Profile Sweden

Well I tried what was stated in the orgenial post.However when I do the update I get this error page

Error #0100:ERROR: The update attempt failed because the file "" is missing on the update servers. Please try again later.

As you know,If I used that link I will get back to the orgenial page where I got the update from in the first place.

Any ideas of what to do?

Former Swedish Soldier current US Marine.


Private First Class
Posts: 94
Joined: 28 Mar 2004

      Posted: 01 Dec 2009 02:25 Profile Australia

I have been playing aa3 with win 7 x64 with no problems, that is up until Sat 20th Nov 09. Log on, PB is up to date, select posiiton, game starts I get PB kicked and returned to main window with this:

You were removed from the server by Punkbuster, Please verify your PB installation and that PB is enabled using Multiplayer internet server browser. aa3.launch log has more details.

Doesnt really tell me much except right at the end it says unable to retrieve invalid player name. I havent changed my name so whats the go.
Anyone got a clue, left a ticket at evenbalance. AA2 is looking good at present.
Ps, have not installed any new software, enabled programmes through firewall and have even tried today with Nod 32 disabled, just to be on the safe side.


Posts: 1
Joined: 13 Dec 2009

      Posted: 13 Dec 2009 03:09 Profile

Outlawstar15a2 wrote:

I have Vista, with 3.0.6 Steam client. Been installed on my system two days now and still can't get PB to initialize. I tried uninstalling/reinstalling, I tried the PB update utilitiy from the link on the first page. I can get as far as PB initialization but after that AA3 freezes and I have to manually force the game to terminate via Task Manager. I am this close to uninstalling it from my system.... Any advice? And I cant use the Deploy client because I get the "Program too big to fit in memory" error and I have 2 Gigs so I definitely meet the minimum requirement....

i got that same problem.. after this Punkbuster intiaization and my game crashed... and im back to my desktop, i've been try all those tips what here is, like updating manualy, deleting pbsetup and reinstaling, also been reinstalling game and hole steam... nothing works.. been fixed my firewall and virus soft.. please help me Smile

Windows xp
3d gard Nvidia 8800gts
processor: Dualcore E 7400 2.80 ghz
Ram: 3GB ddr2 800mhz


Private First Class
Posts: 94
Joined: 28 Mar 2004

      Posted: 14 Dec 2009 03:44 Profile Australia

I have my problem fixed, put in a ticket to pb and they were very helpful. however i had already did what they asked me to do plus i have also enabled pb in windows defender. So at this stage i don't know if what even balance told me to do fixed the problem or telling defender to leave pkbster.exe alone. okay first download pbsvrc.exe, use it to uninstall pb reboote use it to reinstall pb reboot, then set up windows defender in tools, options, excluded files and folder and add PnkBstrA.exe and PnkBstrB.exe. hope this helps


Posts: 6
Joined: 26 Dec 2008

      Posted: 15 Dec 2009 03:54 Profile

For people who still encounter punkbuster "autoupdate" problems after reinstalling the services:

cf to -=[RBF]=-SnipeKill's post:

for me it helped after *cleanly* reinstalling pb (with rebooting in between and cleaning up registry) to first delete the "pnkbstrb.exe" and "pnkbstrb.xtr" in the "WINDOWS\system32" directory and then SWITCH OFF the punkbuster button in americas army at the multiplayer host selection list.
restart the game and switch it on again.
after that i had a look into the punkbuster logfiles located under "WINDOWS\system32\LogFiles\Punkbuster" while connecting to servers and now pnkbstrb.exe has the correct entry (AAV3) instead of (bf1942).
seems like (after installing punkbuster services via pbsvc.exe and testing them) the program installs a pnkbstrb.exe for bf1942 as a standard - which cannot be used by aa3 of course..
so if you delete the old version of pnkbstrb.exe and force pnkbstra.exe (by switching the pb button off and on and connecting to servers) to create a new pnkbstrb.exe, the new one will be the correct version.

for me this worked after i could not connect to servers (handshake stuff) and was kicked after trying to validate the punkbuster initialization right before even selecting a team.

i hope this helps the people with similar problems.

btw: this problem occured all of a sudden for me - i cant really say why it came up but since it came up the first time, it was present in all of my next tries to connect to any pb using servers.



Posts: 3
Joined: 17 Dec 2009

      Posted: 17 Dec 2009 13:41 Profile

The following is predicated on WIN XP HOME, but the theory remains the same

I have been fighting this battle with the help of EVENBALANCE now for almost six
(6) weeks. I have read everything online I can find which is actually quite little, and NO WHERE have I found a definitive answer. I did finally solve it though. All I can tell you is what PB was telling me, something is interupting the PnkBstrB.exe file. It can be ALMOST ANYTHING. In my case, it was my Logitech USB headset... the same one that I have been using and playing with for more than 2 years. Why now? I have no idea... but I will say this... the instructions you receive about updating PB manually, and other aspects of PB operations are not all that clear, and it is easy to make a mistake and have *that* actually cause your problem.

When you run PBSETUP, and you go BACK in for instance... if you do NOT see the name of the game listed... you have not done it correctly. Also, you should see it update, and the names of the files go by. I read online that the Logitech G-15 keyboard had macros that interfered with PB... and guess which keyboard I am using...??? Yup... and they then specified it was the older "blue" version, not the new orange type... same here. I switched out to an old antique serial board just as the guy in the post said... and it didn't change anything for him, nor me. That was not the problem. I use "MAGIC JACK" voip phone, and it caused a conflict with my headset, and I think that may have been what started things down the wrong path. Try unplugging EVERYTHING USB, and see if that helps you. I have since started using MAGIC JACK again, and no problems with the game... but if I plug in that headset (and it WORKS fine) I will get the standard "heartbeats stopped" or PnkBstrB.exe failed to initialize" within 5 minutes.

I have a current open ticket with PB sitting at 35 notes.... most of which are mine. They had me send them logs and files from my machine, but nothing ever came of it. I think honestly, they just don't know. You can try signing on with a new account, etc... but it will not change the problem. I constantly read about guys uninstall-reinstall the GAME, PB...etc... and *if* it did any good (it was rare) it didn't last past the next boot cycle. I must have uninstalled-reinstalled PB 30-40 times. You can hit ctrl-alt-del and go to PROCESSES and see both the "A" and "B" files there, so what... if something is interupting them while you are playing, then your "heartbeats stopped" You can go to Administrative Tools/Services, and scroll down and see both the "A" and "B" files, you can start and stop them them there... but if they are there (and I bet they are) you are still fighting the interuption somewhere else.

I saw in reading that this problem goes back as far as 2005 when the game was NEW... but there are few current answers... this thread was one of the more recent, and it is 2+ months old. I was SO incredibly frustrated that I had to atleast try to help some other guys out there that are ready to pitch the whole thing. When you work with PB... they will help you a couple of times, but once your Notes get up around 10-12... fhey feel that they have done all that they can do. They will tell you that 99% of the time, it is your Anti-Virus Program, or your FIREWALL.... and that you need to go INTO the program and list the PnkBstrA.exe and PnkBstrB.exe file as EXCLUSIONS so that they are not scanned etc... also the same with your firewall. Go to CONTROL PANEL and click on the next to last icon, the red brick FIREWALL and see... and I bet you a cold one.. that the PnkBstrA.exe and PnkBstrB.exe file are there with the boxes checked... because PB does that for you. I completely UNINSTALLED my Anti-virus software (McAffee) because it was name *specifically* as a MAJOR cause of the problem, I turned OFF my firewall... and I STILL had the problem. This finally caused PB to start asking me to send them log files, and run the tests etc. All they ever said about it was... "well... obviously.. these are not causing the problem so we need to find what is interupting the files." I asked them... "if the anti-virus and the firewall cause 99% of the problems, what causes the other 1%???"

I found it by accident.... and noticed it by accident... and I have been playing kick free for a couple of weeks now.. there is no question that was the problem. I am stil working with PB to see WHY my headset is causing the problem (no hope of that I am afraid) and PB is pretty much tired of me asking questions particularly when I am able to play again. Then too... (I play BF-2 primarily) I get to see the blatant hackers that use the $25.00 a month hacker software, and triple the score of all the other players (impossible) and wonder what PB really does for us... all I can say is hang in there, and try EVERYTHING you can think of to strip down your system until you find the problem.


Sergeant Major
Posts: 7172
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      Posted: 17 Dec 2009 13:53 Profile United States

LoosMoose wrote:

....You can hit ctrl-alt-del and go to PROCESSES and see both the "A" and "B" files there, so what... if something is interupting them while you are playing, then your "heartbeats stopped" You can go to Administrative Tools/Services, and scroll down and see both the "A" and "B" files, you can start and stop them them there... but if they are there (and I bet they are) you are still fighting the interuption somewhere else....

Unless you were playing the game and checking the processes, File "B" is not on until you play a game that enables PB. Also, you haven't mentioned this, but is the "K" file unblocked from your AV program and firewall?

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Posts: 3
Joined: 17 Dec 2009

      Posted: 20 Dec 2009 15:11 Profile

Atleast in my case PnkBstrB.exe would remain in the PROCESSES after you initiated the game. I don't know if this is correct or not, and EB never made mention of it. When you uninstall/reinstall, the "B" file is not there...(active in PROCESSES) but you are correct that once you initiate the game then it is loaded. If you alt-tab out of the game you can verify this, and when I was kicked I would verify this again, it was there but something (we still do not know what) is/was interfering with it.

You can also "manually" load the "B" file going through ADMIN TOOLS/ SERVICES.

The "K" file is indeed unblocked, and you can see that when you run the TEST as it accesses and removes it and then gives you the TEST COMPLETED WITH NO ERRORS message.


Posts: 4
Joined: 24 Jan 2010

      Posted: 01 Feb 2010 11:41 Profile

-=Maj.Woody=- wrote:


also try manually enabling PB by opening you console(F12) and typing

PB_CL_Enable (case sensitive)

this fixed my problem, thx alot


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Posts: 218
Joined: 22 Jun 2007

      Posted: 08 May 2010 09:44 Profile

I installed punkbuster, checked for updates, then reinstalled/repaired punkbuster, then uninstalled punkbuster, then reinstalled punkbuster, and I'm still getting kicked from servers.

Oddly enough, some servers actually let me on, all of them being punkbuster enabled servers. For example, TAW server lets me on and I played on it but most other servers I get kicked for PB problems, usually in the same amount of time it always takes.

AthlonT X2 6000+
AVC Silent AMD CPU Fan and Heatsink
9600GT 512 MB
Windows Vista HP 64 Bit


Posts: 17
Joined: 07 Dec 2010

      Posted: 07 Dec 2010 15:10 Profile Canada

ok i know this is an old post but im having alot of trobles with pb when i enter a server it works fo about a minute and then it kicks me off the server. when i run pbsvc the test shows this

Starting PunkBuster Service Tests (v0.989) (12/07/10 15:06:11)
Checking OS
Windows NT 6.1 (build 7600) 64-bit
Checking PnkBstrA service status RUNNING
Checking PnkBstrA Version OK (1032)
Extracting "PnkBstrB.exe" to:
Checking firewall settings OFF
Checking if PnkBstrB is running RUNNING
Manually stopping PnkBstrB STOPPED
Getting port for PnkBstrA OK (44301)
Opening socket for packet send OK
Sending version packet to PnkBstrA SENT
Receiving version from PnkBstrA OK
Received 6 bytes from
Response = 9002 (ms) Version = v1032
Getting PnkBstrB install instance OK
Sending start packet to PnkBstrA SENT
Waiting for packet from PnkBstrA OK
Received 3 bytes from
Response = 13729 (ms) PnkBstrB started.
Watching for PnkBstrB instance change (4) CHANGED (5)
Getting port for PnkBstrB OK (45301)
Sending version packet to PnkBstrB SENT
Receiving version from PnkBstrB OK
Received 5 bytes from
Response = 3292 (ms) Version = 2202
Checking PnkBstrK driver status NOT FOUND
Manually stopping PnkBstrB STOPPED
Removing test PnkBstrB file OK

Tests finished.

the windows im running is windows 7. plz help

edit: i pressed the "test services" button

after first edit: the console command " PB_CL_Enable" works Cheesy Grin Cheesy Grin Very Happy im happy now

after second edit: i still get some kicks but some how i sometimes get it to work

 How to Update or Reinstall PunkBuster in v3.0+ 

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