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Using the Microsoft Wireless Gaming Receiver in 64-bit Windows 7 or Vista

Getting your receiver to work as it should

A few days ago, I picked up a Microsoft-branded wireless receiver to use my XBOX 360′s steering wheel on my PC. To my horror, I discovered that the drivers included on the bundled disc were not compatible with 64-bit versions of Windows Vista or Windows 7. Here’s how I managed to get the thing going.

Download the “drivers”

Yes, there are drivers, but they don’t work as well as they should. They basically install a simple GUI that tells you if your controller is connected, and I assume drop some setup .inf in your Windows directories somewhere. To download these drivers, head to Microsoft’s Windows 7 driver support page. From the pulldown menus, select Controller, Microsoft Xbox 360 Wireless Controller, Windows 7 (or vista) 64-bit, and the language of your choice.

Download and install as prompted, then move on to the next step.

Selecting the driver

Plug in your wireless receiver if you have yet to do so. The driver installation is a little deep within several of Windows’ layers, so follow this guide carefully. This is assuming you’re running Windows 7 X64, but Windows Vista should have very similar menu structures.

  1. Go to your Control Panel
  2. Click on Hardware and Sound
  3. Click on Device Manager under Devices and Printers
  4. Scroll down the list to Other devices
  5. Double-click the Unknown device
  6. Click on the Hardware tab
  7. Click on Update Driver
  8. Select Browse my computer for driver software
  9. Select Let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer
  10. Scroll down and select Microsoft Common Controller for Windows Class and click on Next
  11. Select Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver for Windows and click on Next
  12. When the warning message appears, select Yes

Testing everything

You’re done! The driver will now install. Try and sync up your wireless controllers now. To test them out, hit the Guide button on your controller and the Windows guide should appear on your screen.

Good luck!

Updates and clarifications

I’ve noticed an issue with this method. It seems to be impossible to turn off wireless controllers connected this way. You’ll need to pull our your battery packs if you’re using a controller, or disconnect the steering wheel’s power supply.

I’ve tested this method and was successful in using the wireless control, racing wheel and wireless headset with no major issues. However, force feedback on the steering wheel is still unsupported. Not the fault of the drivers, though. The Microsoft Developers were supposed to work on it, but they dropped the project all together a while back so unfortunately, unless someone from the community decides to pick it up, it’s never going to happen.

How-to Windows Xbox 360

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  1. bulletbill
    September 5, 2010 at 1:18 PM

    I must have come back to this post at least a dozen times between formats now. Thank you so much for this clear write-up. It’s been enormously helpful!

  2. d4niel
    February 3, 2011 at 10:13 AM


  3. Nathaniel
    February 12, 2011 at 9:01 PM

    i dont have other devices on my devices manger screen

  4. Chad Thompson
    March 14, 2011 at 12:21 AM

    You’re a life saver, been messing with this for like 2 hours tonight and this got it fixed in 30 seconds. Thanks.

  5. Xavier
    March 27, 2011 at 10:36 AM

    Thanx a lot!!! It Worx!

  6. tylyn
    April 21, 2011 at 2:21 PM


  7. Andris
    July 16, 2011 at 3:11 PM

    Thanks for your advise,all works excellent…you are best in the world!!!

  8. Ben
    July 20, 2011 at 12:52 PM

    Great Guide. Helped alot. Thanks.

  9. Aquarion
    October 2, 2011 at 4:58 AM

    Thanks, this was exactly what I was looking for.

  10. Adam
    October 26, 2011 at 8:50 AM

    Thank you so much!!!!!!

  11. gamesgurugill
    December 2, 2011 at 4:33 PM

    Been getting very frustrated with this.Searched high and low for answers, you sir, delivered.

  12. Eric Woll
    December 3, 2011 at 1:21 PM

    Thanks alot for this article. Completely necessary! Nothing on Microsoft’s site even suggests this from what I could find. Just bought a new 64bit Win7 laptop and was worried that the reciever had been damaged some how. o_O

  13. Damien
    January 10, 2012 at 6:33 AM

    Step 10 confuses the hell out of me.. what do i do there? where do i find this microsoft common controller for windows class?

  14. Joe Johnson
    February 3, 2012 at 10:48 PM

    Thank you so much. I really appreciate your help.

  15. SweStars
    February 10, 2012 at 5:08 AM

    You saved my life!
    Great thanks!

  16. Jan Ole Peek
    March 2, 2012 at 7:50 PM

    Thanks for writing this up, it worked great!

  17. PaNKiO
    March 6, 2012 at 12:39 PM

    no other devices in my cp. but i’ve seen that you do not answer that another guy that has same prob. so why do i actually care?

    • Steel Frog
      March 7, 2012 at 8:22 AM

      I’m not really sure why the device isn’t showing up. By default, it should appear as an unknown device in the Device Manager. Maybe check under other tabs and see if it hasn’t been picked up with other drivers that were already present in your machine.

  18. Michael
    March 15, 2012 at 4:37 PM

    The first light on the controller comes on when I press the Guide button to turn my controller on. But when I press the Guide button again to test if the computer detected it, nothing happens :( does anyone have any ideas what to do?

  19. Joey
    April 4, 2012 at 6:16 PM

    You’re the man!!

  20. Mark
    May 17, 2012 at 2:10 PM

    My god, i have tried so many times to sort this out. since my wired one broke and i got the reciver about a year ago. was about to bin it when i though i would try one more look on the web. I know this is a old post but thanks so much. was too stressed over a little problem that shouldnt happen thank you again

    • Steel Frog
      May 17, 2012 at 2:29 PM

      It might be an old post, but I’m still around! I’m glad you’ve found this useful!

    • Mark
      May 17, 2012 at 3:28 PM

      Sorry,,, scratch that, still not working? im sure im one step closer. i never even had it reconize the control. Now it does, i though that was it, but the analog sticks arnt working. only the buttons and maybe the triggers, if your still about an have came across this one please let me know. starting to think a wired one wouldnt do me any harm

  21. Ryan
    July 7, 2012 at 6:11 PM

    Thanks so much for the clear write up. It helped enormously. As for the problem with force feedback on the wheel, is there any update since 2010 as to drivers coming out be either Microsoft or someone in the community? I would really like to have the force feedback. Any further help would be appreciated. Thanks again for the clear write up.

  22. Cody
    July 15, 2012 at 8:04 PM

    I checked several different sites looking for a way to solve this issue, because I had no idea why my controller wasn’t syncing. You were the only one that gave clear enough instructions, thanks man!

  23. jago
    August 11, 2012 at 4:11 PM

    Thank you so much! saved me a lot of time!

  24. Caio
    August 30, 2012 at 2:30 PM

    Man, it totally works! Great job!

  25. dert
    October 2, 2012 at 1:19 AM


  26. Mark Salieri
    October 13, 2012 at 12:58 PM

    Please help me! I followed your guide and I did connect my controller, but it disconnects every 30 seconds or less… is there a way to fix this?

  27. Blacky
    November 17, 2012 at 9:29 AM

    Hey! I don’t know why no one said thanks, but i’m doing it!
    Took me ages to find out how to do it first time, but with this guide was instant!

  28. maqes
    November 27, 2012 at 11:43 AM

    Thanks ;__;

  29. Davie
    November 28, 2012 at 12:00 PM

    Thanks bro, works like a charm.

  30. kevin b
    December 12, 2012 at 7:28 PM

    You freakin rock! I even bothered to add my email just to leave this post to let you know :D

  31. keaturtle
    January 1, 2013 at 5:45 PM

    My “Microsoft Common Controller for Windows Class” did not show in my list of device drivers. Does anyone know why?

  32. Brendo11
    January 2, 2013 at 1:33 AM

    im not sure which device driver to use. Since i have 2 device drivers. i used the one dated in 2009 (Xbox 360 Wireless Receiver for Windows Version: [13/08/2009]). and my controller wont connect. any suggestions?

  33. Rafael Sousa
    January 9, 2013 at 8:00 AM

    Tks, for help!!!!

  34. Eric
    January 22, 2013 at 4:32 PM

    i can follow this tut until part 10 cuz when i get to the window that ask me wich driver to use Microsoft Common Controller for Windows Class is not in the list neither in the list if i click to show all units, some help would be apreciated im running windows xp SP3 32bit

  35. Donny Osman
    January 28, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    Hey, you know, this is great, thanks Donny.

  36. ali mune
    February 2, 2013 at 8:51 AM

    thank best explanation,
    u r the best

    thanks again

    works perfect

  37. Jonathan
    February 3, 2013 at 7:14 AM

    Hello, i used all these steps but i simply don’t have common controller part to choose. Any idea how i can install it? I have Windows Vista 64 Bit Home Premium. Would be nice if i get reply :)

  38. James
    February 4, 2013 at 2:12 AM

    Thanks very clear and helpful

  39. Jan
    February 8, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Thank you.

  40. Jonatan
    February 8, 2013 at 12:38 PM

    Well i somehow managed to do it myself. After i installed updates it showed under show all drivers etc. Anyway thx

  41. Li
    February 9, 2013 at 11:19 AM

    Thank you!!! :D

  42. Madromark
    February 18, 2013 at 12:37 PM

    Thank you very much, it helped a lot :)

  43. Aqua
    February 20, 2013 at 12:13 PM

    Thanks this works perfectly!!

  44. soulreaver99
    March 28, 2013 at 1:20 AM

    If it doesn’t work for you, don’t give up yet. There is a small button on the top left side of the controller that you need to press. It took me while to figure out. You need to press that and the sync button on the receiver then it will work!

  45. Rodrigo!
    April 9, 2013 at 10:06 PM

    thank you soooo much!!!!! it worked perfectly!!!

  46. Renier
    April 10, 2013 at 2:41 PM

    Thanks for the tutorial. I want to know if the force feedback still not works using the receiver.

    Thanks you in advance

  47. Happy Spanners
    April 11, 2013 at 11:07 AM

    Thank you so much! :D

  48. sam
    April 21, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    Thanks so much, I’ve been trying to get it to works for 2 days. Now it works perfectly.

  49. Harry
    April 25, 2013 at 4:12 PM

    Microsoft Common Controller for Windows Class does not appear on my list?

  50. futurismnews.Com
    May 6, 2013 at 5:43 AM

    Have you ever thought about adding a little bit more than just your articles?
    I mean, what you say is fundamental and everything.
    But think of if you added some great pictures or video clips to
    give your posts more, “pop”! Your content is excellent but
    with pics and videos, this website could undeniably be one of the greatest in its field.
    Superb blog!

  51. Bender
    May 24, 2013 at 10:16 PM

    Amazing! I bought one of these off of e-Bay and the disk was broken. It couldn’t find the drivers, and the Microsoft site kept bringing me to a page that wasn’t helping! I thought I was screwed until I found this page! Lesson Learned ;) And thanks!! I’m surprised Microsoft doesn’t have this on their site somewhere, but maybe they do and I didn’t see it… Thanks again!!

  52. Rotem
    June 26, 2013 at 3:26 AM

    Thank you very much!

  53. Tom
    July 7, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    Thanks for the guide as Rotem said I spent hours on Microsoft’s website looking for a solution I thought I had purchased an expensive paperweight.It was by chance I discovered your blog cheers for the help much appreciated :).

  54. tommy
    July 24, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    THANK YOU! you saved me lol…. the disc dident work witht the drivers you saved me thank you :D

  55. Tibbe
    July 25, 2013 at 5:56 PM

    Spending several hours getting Thrustmaster 458 Italia to work on a Dell Alienware. PlugNPlay did NOT work, do I need to say that? :) Downloading driver from Thrustmaster did NOT work. That’s a lot for this article!

  56. Robert Taylor
    October 18, 2013 at 12:46 PM

    cannot get it to work at all. and i see that you only reply when people say it does work, so thanks for nothing

    • Steel Frog
      October 18, 2013 at 12:50 PM

      Whoa there. I rarely – if ever – update this site any more. If I don’t reply it’s simply because I don’t know. There aren’t many points where this fails so beyond these steps, there’s little I can offer in terms of assistance. What exactly is the issue? Saying “it doesn’t work” doesn’t give me much to work with.

  57. Byron
    October 22, 2013 at 5:11 AM

    Great guide, works well even with the unofficial receivers.

  58. Anon
    October 28, 2013 at 8:35 AM

    This worked for me.

  59. Ori
    January 1, 2014 at 12:05 AM

    I tried this, theres no unknown device in my device manager list

    • Maxwell Edison
      January 23, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      I’ve just spent half a day trying to get it to work and none of the solutions worked for me at first, since it didn’t show up in the unknown devices. It DID, however, show up in the “USB controllers” section, but only when I plugged it to a certain usb port. So if it doesn’t show up anywhere for you, you can try this:

      1. Try plugging it in all your USB slots, until it shows up in the usb controllers section.
      2. Right click and Uninstall drivers
      3. Unplug it and plug it into a different usb slot.
      4. It should now show up in unknown devices and you can follow the tutorial in the blog.

      Haven’t found this solution anywhere so could work

  60. Having problems
    February 3, 2014 at 2:13 PM

    Doesn’t work, i installed it correctly through the steps, and the green circle on my controller just keeps spinning…

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