Friday, March 25, 2011

PunkBuster Handshake failures

I started getting "PunkBuster kicked player ... Restriction: Service Communication Failure: PnkBstrB.exe handshaking failed" errors after a minute or two of Battlefield 1942 online game play which resulted in me getting kicked from the server. (I was kicked before that with an error message about loosing key packets.) This started occurring about a week ago and after some research it looks to be caused by Microsoft Security Essentials.

If you are getting this error and are running Microsoft Security Essentials (MSE) you just need to exclude the entire battlefield directory from MSE to get PunkBuster running again. To do that:

  1. Open Security Essentials
  2. Click "Settings" tab
  3. Click "Excluded files and locations"
  4. Click "Browse"
  5. Go to or Type: "C:Program Files (x86)\EA Games\Battlefield 1942" for 64bit systems
  6. Go to or Type: "C:Program Files\EA Games\Battlefield 1942" for 32bit systems
  7. Click "Add"
  8. Click "Save Changes"
Now relaunch your program (in my case battlefield) and there should be no "handshake failure".

Updated on 7/15/2011:
I ended up removing Microsoft Security Essentials because it still had problems on one of my systems after making this change. I'm not sure why I would work sometimes and not other times. I installed AVG (which is free) and now I have no problems. 


Anonymous said...

Worked great...Thanks

Chris Kenst said...


Anonymous said...

This worked but I still get kicked while the map is loading on a lot of servers..

Joshua Smith said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
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