Disable DEP to install some pesky applications/drivers

I decided to wipe out my ACER laptop and rebuild it with Vista Business 64bit SP1. All went well and all the applications and back and running.

I suddenly realised that an integral part of my set up was to be able to use my Vodafone 3G mobile card. I downloaded the latest software off the Vodafone site. Then I plugged in the modem. Got a BSOD immediately. After the reboot, the modem appeared to be installed, but I could not get connected to the Vodafone network. I kept getting a RAS Error Code 633. Vodafone support was unable to help (Get your support guys up to date PLEASE! “It should work with Vista” is not a helpful response).

Anyway, after some searching, I discovered some discussion on Data Execution Prevention (DEP) in relation to installing the device. After uninstalling the Vodafone software and drivers, I disabled DEP with the following command.

bcdedit.exe /set {current} nx AlwaysOff

Then I installed the Vodafone software, rebooted, and plugged the modem in. No BSOD. Got the pleasant “Your device installed successfully” message.
Then I tested and was able to connect to the Vodafone network.

Rebooted once more, and then I re-enabled DEP.

bcdedit.exe /set {current} nx AlwaysOn

Tested the connection again. All OK šŸ™‚

Word of WARNING: Do not disable DEP to install drivers unless you are sure the drivers are safe. Also, make sure you have a backup, unless you are prepared to lose data.

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