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Windows 8 and “Legacy” Cisco VPN Client Software

As I recently started using Windows 8 for my day to day desktop, I ran across an issue using my Cisco VPN Client that I can see affecting many users based on the significant number of customers we have requiring the use of Cisco VPN Clients. In my particular case I am running version due to a client requirement.  When trying to initiate any VPN connection the tunnel opens, and then once you enter a password the tunnel is closed immediately with the following error:


While I am sure Cisco will have an updated version of their VPN Software that will correct this issue, for those of us that don’t have access to Cisco updates or have to use a specific version as I did due to a customer requirement that does not offer a solution. After spending some time on the phone with a Cisco Engineer, it turns out there is a rather simple work around that can be used to allow Windows 8 to function properly with the “Legacy” Cisco VPN Clients.

You apply this small workaround as follows:

  1. Open Registry editor by typing “regedit” in a Run prompt
  2. Browse to the Registry Key “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\CVirtAclip_image004
  3. Select the REG_ZW titled “DisplayName” and modify the value removing all the leading characters up to the "%;" directly before Cisco Systems
    1. For my 64bit Windows 8 Machine:  "@oem8.inf,%CVirtA_Desc%;Cisco Systems VPN Adapter for 64-bit Windows” becomes "Cisco Systems VPN Adapter for 64-bit Windows”
  4. Try connecting again and you should have no errors and be able to use your VPN connection as you could with Windows 7

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Tyson Beatty

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