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How to fix the firmware installation issues with Surface Book and Surface Pro 4

Microsoft recently began rolling out fresh new firmware updates for its Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book. The new release includes major fixes and improvements that users have been waiting to see for a long time.

The April 2016 firmware update for the latest model of the Surface tablets brings improvements for Windows Hello, fixes for screen flickering, auto-rotate problems, and a lot more. However, it appears that the installation process is not going as smooth for everyone.

On the Surface subreddit, users are reporting some issues trying to install the new update and that it's even causing a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) in certain situations.

Reddit user Zac_l, a developer from the Windows team, has noted that the company is aware of the issue, and it's working on a fix. The software giant also said that the issue is already fixed in the Redstone update.

Microsoft officials on Reddit also explain that the company is unable to publish the instructions to resolve the issue, because the fix is "literally" different for each computer.

However, a general set of instructions already surfaced to help users to point them in the right direction to fix the issue.

Warning: Only use these steps as a reference. Trying to fix the current problem installing the latest firmware update for Surface Pro 4 and Surface Book may cause other issues. Make sure to make a full backup of your system before proceeding.

  1. Open the Setupapi.dev.log file located on C:\Windows\Inf with Notepad or another text editor.
  2. File the error Failed to install device instance.
  3. Above this error, you will see which inf file has caused the install to fail. For example: oem90.inf, but this error is likely to be different on every machine.
  4. Use the Windows key + X to open the Power User menu and select Command Prompt (Admin).
  5. Type the following command pnputil -d oem90.inf and press Enter.
  6. Try to run Windows Update one more time.

Keep in mind that these are general guidance to point you in the right direction to resolve the issue.

Currently, Microsoft officials on Reddit are asking for those affected by the April 2016 firmware update for Surface Pro 4 and Surface Pro 4 to upload the C:\Windows\inf\setupapi.dev.log file to OneDrive or another service and send them the link so you can receive the specific instructions to resolve the issue on your machine.

Have you come across this issue with the latest firmware update? Were you able to fix the problem? Tell us your experience in the comments below.

Source Reddit, Blackforce

Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.

32 Comments
  • Woh so if hundreds of users logging there errors to one drive it might take a long time for the developers to resolve each one of them Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • #FAIL
  • It's kind of sad, really. I mean, it's Microsoft. You know -- the company that employs the rock stars who wrote the OS and driver model, and has access to all the source code and tons of area experts to help debug issues? But the driver quality on the Surface products has always been terrible, like they are outsourcing it or something. The Surface Book was a buggy mess until sometime in January. Don't get me wrong, I think Microsoft supports their PCs better than anyone else in the market. But if they expect people to pay premium prices for these things, then maybe they should assign a few premium engineers to the team to make sure they don't have glaring issues out of the gate.
  • It solved all my remaining SP4 sleep issues. No problem installing. Really bad MS that these install issues occur. Don't you test these properly.
  • No problems with installing here (not running insider builds on my SB though)
  • Nadella & Terry use Mac Books and couldn't care less.
  • I was able to install on sp4 and almost got frozen when I tried to shut down. All the text in my start screen live tiles went away which just looked like bank squares and rectangles. Luckily I was able to press and hold the start button and restart without issue. I wasn't using a type cover.
  • since the last Insider build, my Windows Hello don't work and when I go in the controle panel to reset it or remove it, it's loding non stop and don't work, I can't to a reset my device to, windows said there is a probleme with your system... how can I fix this?
  • Don't install am insider build on your main device. Simple Posted from Windows Central for Windows 10
  • it is not my main device... I use it like a tablette, but now how do I fix it, I can use it , it is juste I have to use my passeword to log in my device, I realy like the Hello fonction
  • Ah, I see. Sorry for pre-assuming. Ask on the forums. I'm sure there will be an answer
  • Ironically enough, this is the first firmware update for my Surface Book that actually installed with zero errors. Every previous update resulted in at least one failed device driver that needed to be rolled back and manually installed. The first one after Christmas tried and failed to install the UEFI firmware every time I rebooted until the next update. I love the hardware and the new direction of the company, but QA has definitely suffered since Nadella took over.
  • "Microsoft officials"... You're making it sound as if it wasn't just Zac trying to help people out
  • The fix did it for me (oem135.inf was the culprit). Thanks a lot for the post!
  • QA is so bad it seems. Do they not take a hundred or so SB and SP4 devices and test this, rollback and test again?
  • You should clarify the steps. It is entirely possible and likely that a lot of people have multiple failures in this file. What users should really do is to go to the very bottom of the file and work up to find  Also, there will likely be two INF files in that line, the one they want is: Enclosed in parens Begins with oem Finally, File in step 2 should be Find.
  • There always seems to be a mega showstopper bug that normal consumers have no idea how to fix. It's remarkable how consistent this trend is. No wonder the average person throws their hands up and just buys a Mac.
  • And then, once they have the same problems with a Mac they say "Well, it must be me" and don't blame Apple.  
  • It's no different for any other OS, there will be issues like this
  • The average consumer doesn't buy a Mac. The entry price is too high. Most people are looking for a $500-$600 machine. Those have a short lifespan because of the low specs, but it's what people want.
  • Lol try modbook
  • Hmm didn't know Modbook existed. $3,000 for the high end model seems like a lot when their storage capacity is misleading. You get 620GB of storage, but 120GB is internal storage and the rest is an external HDD. It only has 4GB of RAM. I'm not sure how they can call their product the most powerful tablet in the world. I'll stick with my SP4 with 256GB internal, microSD slot, and 8GB RAM all for less than half the cost of a Modbook.
  • Sounds like the SP4 were manufactured with early samples of the silicon and they don't all meet spec.
  • Mine is oem0.inf, and running the pnputil command gives me this result: Deleting the driver package failed :One or more devices are presently installed using the specified INF.
  • I get the same on my Surface Book.  Can't delete the oem4.inf  
  • I figured it out -- if you scroll further up, you'll find a line that reads something like this: ndv: Driver package 'C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\Temp\{9cb2a9d4-1230-4c4f-a6b6-ad27cf89b697}\SkcController.inf' exists under 'C:\WINDOWS\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\skccontroller.inf_amd64_b8fa66e3cad9164f\skccontroller.inf' (oem137.inf). I ran the pnputil -d command for oem137.inf and re-ran WUpdate; worked great. Had to repeat for the Surface Dock, which failed on oem136.inf. So even though it says "  InfFile     - C:\WINDOWS\INF\oem0.inf", ignore that and scroll up a bit on your log to find the corrupt/offending file.
  • I forwarded this to my grandma and wished her luck.
  • My screen went dark on my SP4, but I used the power and volume button to restart it. The update progress bar appeared, and Windows Update doesn't show any available updates.
  • This is what I saw.  This is a pretty generic build of Windows Enterprise 10 ver 1511 that seemed to have some issue installing the updates.  It seemed stuck on the Surface screen.  Several reboots and resets with power and volume button and it seemed like the issue was resolved.  Until all the updates installed it was really flaky with screen flicker etc.
  • I updated two SP4 tablets. Had to reboot one of them to get all the updates. No issues
  • Worked for me; one of the driver updates had failed. After running this process now it says I'm up to date.
  • Green cmdline font?