Moving a DCS Installation

So, I’m building a new PC and I’d quite like to transfer my DCS installs from the old box to the new. Internet speed is pretty terrible down here and the thought of having to re-download everything over again makes me grumpier then @Bogusheadbox thinking about how he’s not going to get a DCS F-111 for at least five years…

I know that there have been some techniques that have worked on earlier installs (@SkateZilla had some pointers over at the ED forums) but has anyone tried this in the 2.5 era? Any advice?



You could start out by copying all of it over and then export all the relevant bits from your windows registry using regedit

Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Eagle Dynamics\DCS World ← is where its at.

You may have to edit that a bit after importing it on the new box.

If your DCS now acts weird or refuses to run, make sure to run a repair. Easiest way to do that is using the skatezilla tool.

Also don’t forget to copy the relevant bits of C:\users\you\saved games\DCS such as your controls files.

Good luck mate!


Don’t forget to ‘de-license’ (is that a word?) first before shutting down the old PC for the last time, as it will want to reactivate the starforce keys if the hardware changes.

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Do you happen to have a link to how that is actually done fearless? I’m preparing to do the same thing shortly and have not yet started researching how one does that.

Here you go:

How can I deactivate the products (modules) in order not to lose the available activations?

You can deactivate the module directly from the Module Manager in DCS World, by clicking on the DRM button.

The number of deactivations is limited to ten attempts.

How to manually deactivate the product:

Run the <product name>_protect.exe file, which is located in associated
product folder into DCS World\Mods\aircraft or terrain or tech folder\bin.

Select the deactivate application command as displayed in the
window, then press the Next button.

Press the Deactivate link in the displayed window (the Serial Number used to
Activate the application is indicated in this window by default).

After pressing the deactivate link a window requesting deactivation
confirmation is displayed.

Press the Deactivate button; the following message is then displayed.
Press Yes button to begin the deactivation process.

Confirm the application deactivation with the OK button.
The Automatic Deactivation is now complete.

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Thanks @fearlessfrog how many products still use the Starforce activation count? I thought most are account-based now?

About from the time of the AV/8B pre-order onwards is the ‘keyless’ purchases that are tied to your dcs-world account. You can tell which have the keys with the ‘DRM’ button on the Module Manager:


Thank you fearless.

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So this didn’t work. I can get DCS to load but it wont let me get access to any of my modules. Tried fettling it, repairing it and cleaning it but no dice.

Guess I’ll see you guys in a week or two…

no no not yet

try running the DRM activation thing.

they’re found in …\DCS World\Mods\aircraft\Your plane\bin\

For example …\aircraft\A-10C\bin\a10_protect.exe should allow you to activate the thing.
It’s a pain but that should do it for the things with “bad old DRM”.

For the new ones, try finding the module manager icon and make sure you are logged onto your DCS account.

Good luck and please report back.

So I tried activating the DRM manually, it seems to complete (as did the repair and cleaning processes earlier)i but when I fire up DCS I still get an error when I try to navigate to the modules menu.

Happy to accept I goofed, but am tired, and need to kick off the update If i’m going to have a hope of getting all this downloaded over this weekend.


Allright. Too bad we couldn’t suss it out.

@schurem a small consolation; DCS’s downloads folder contains a “Mods” folder with the same structure as the one which contains all the official aircraft, campaigns and terrains in a normal installation.

I took the Mods folder from my old install and put it into the .downloads on my new one, hopped into DCS and told it to install my modules.

After a couple of minutes of this:


DCS detected the old modules, calculated the delta and went off to recover the 100 MB of files it didn’t like the smell of.

Saved me another 30+ hrs of downloading.