How To Fix Your Cisco VPN Client on Windows 8/Server 2012

I’ve been waiting for Windows Server 2012 to be released so I can try it out on my test environment. I already have Windows 8 installed on my test workstation but I wasn’t using it that much as compared to my Windows Server machine. I took that plunge last weekend and upgraded my Windows Server 2008 R2 machine to Windows Server 2012. The first thing that I needed to do was to test the Cisco VPN client. After reinstalling the Cisco VPN client, I tested connectivity to our internal network. Unfortunately, I hit an error message that looks something like this

Secure VPN Connection terminated locally by the Client.

Reason 442: failed to enable Virtual Adapter

Poking around the Windows Event Log, I found this error message

The application (Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client, from vendor Cisco) has the following problem: To function properly, Cisco AnyConnect VPN Client must be reinstalled after you upgrade Windows.

Now, I just did a reinstallation so I’m sure this wasn’t going to be a resolution. After a quick search using the keywords “Cisco VPN Client Windows 8” I saw this forum thread about a bug in the Cisco VPN client. All that is needed to make it work was to change some registry keys. On my Windows Server 2012 installation, the registry key is


If you look at the DisplayName key value, you may see some weird characters that have been inserted at the beginning of the line.

@oem8.inf,%CVirtA_Desc%;Cisco Systems VPN Adapter for 64-bit Windows

Simply remove the weird characters and try connecting to your VPN client. I’m guessing it’s the same for Windows 8 but I haven’t tried yet. I’ll install the Cisco VPN client on my Windows 8 workstation and see if I hit the same bug.

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5 thoughts on “How To Fix Your Cisco VPN Client on Windows 8/Server 2012

  1. Thank you for posting your solution

    I had the same problem with Windows 8 and the Cisco Anyconnect client 2.5
    I had to correct the displayname for registry key: