PIVKey Admin Installer

Note: The PIVKey Admin Installer is needed only on those systems where certificates have to be loaded onto the card, or where the User PIN needs to be unblocked. The PIVKey Admin Installation is typically not required on end user systems.


The Admin Installer is required to manage the PIVKey: to load certificates and to map those certificates to PIV Certificate Slots. It should be installed on the Admin enrollment station, or on a central server.

The download is a zipped file called "pkadmin", usually found in your Downloads folder.  Right-click this file and choose Extract All.  This will create a folder also called "pkadmin" (possibly inside another folder of the same name, depending on the defaults for folder extraction in Windows).  

This folder will have the following:

  • a folder containing the CA Root Certificates (you will only need these if you decide to use the default PIVKey certificate that comes on your PIVKey)
  • a folder with the End User Installer (for deployments that require the PIVKey software on each client machine)
  • PIVKey Installer-Admin installer application
  • VSEC_CMS_2.0 installer application
  • PIVKey release notes

PIVKey Admin Installer

The PIVKey Admin Installer installs the PIVKey Smart Card Minidriver (for integration of the PIVKey into the Windows Base Smart Card CSP) and creates a folder called "PIVKey Installer", usually in C:\Program Files (x86).  That folder will have folders called "PIVKey Admin Tools" and "PIVKey Manual Install".  Most users will be interested in the "PIVKey Admin Tools" folder.  It contains the PIVKeyTool command line tool application, two example batch files, a Read Me file (updated version coming soon!), and a dynamic-link library (.dll) file required by the PIVKey software.

The batch files are provided simply as examples, you can use any text editor to view their contents.  They perform as follows:

WARNING:  If you double-click the batch file names, they will run.  Only double-click them if you want to perform the described functions, or if you have customized them for your own purposes.  Right-click and choose Edit to view.


The VSEC_CMS_2.0 installer installs VSEC_CMS_2.0 an application from Versatile Security Sweden AB (www.versatilesecurity.com).  It provides a graphical user interface application to do things such as:  

  • unblock the user PIN using the Admin Key
  • change the user PIN or Admin Key (be sure you read this article to avoid future problems)
  • list the certificates on the PIVKey

For more information on vSEC_CMS see this article.

What's next?

After downloading, if you aren't sure what to do next, check out the Getting Started article for an overview of how PIVKeys are typically used and where to look next for more information!


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