Forcing the install

How to install unsigned Windows 10 apps using PowerShell

When you come errors trying to install an app on Windows 10, it could be that appx package is unsigned. Here's how you can get around the this problem.

Installing unsigned apps on Windows 10

Windows 10 apps are built and installed differently than traditional desktop applications. While with desktop applications, you need to go through various installation steps, with an appx package, you only need to click one button.

These new apps, part of the Universal Windows Platform (UWP), are usually available through the Windows Store, but there will be times when you’ll have to install them outside of the Store.

Depending on how you acquired the app, you’ll come across apps with a digital signature, which is a requirement before they’re submitted to the Windows Store, and those that might still under development and are unsigned.

While you can install digitally signed Windows 10 apps with a single click from the Store and different sources, you cannot install unsigned apps that easily. If you try to install an unsigned appx package, you’ll get the “Ask the app developer for a new app package. This one isn’t signed with a trusted certificate (0x800B0100)” error message. However, the installation isn’t impossible, you just need to change the installation settings and use the PowerShell command-line tool.

In this guide, you’ll learn the steps to install unsigned Windows 10 apps on your computer.

How to install an unsigned appx packages on Windows 10

It’s important to note that in most cases, you shouldn’t install unsigned apps on Windows 10, as they may cause harm to your computer. However, if you’re are a developer or let’s say, you’re trying to install a new Windows 10 app that has leaked onto the web, you can use the following steps to install the unsigned “.appx” package.

How to enable Developers mode

If the app doesn’t have a digital signature, you have to enable the “Developer mode” on your computer.

  1. Open Settings.

  2. Click on Update & security.

  3. Click on For developers.

  4. Under “Use developer features”, enable Developer mode.

    Enable Developer mode on Windows 10
    Enable Developer mode on Windows 10
  5. Click Yes.

  6. Restart your computer to complete the task.

How to install unsigned Windows 10 apps using PowerShell

Once you have enabled the Developer mode, now you can proceed to install the unsigned packages.

If you are trying to install an app that wasn’t not packaged, meaning that you have a folder with all content, instead of a single *.appx file, you will need to use the following instructions:

  1. Open Start, search for Windows PowerShell, right-click the result, and select Run as administrator.

  2. Type the following command and press Enter:

    Add-AppxPackage -Path PATH-TO-APPXFILEFOLDER\AppxManifest.xml -Register

    PowerShell command to install unsigned appx package on Windows 10
    PowerShell command to install unsigned app using AppxManifest

If you obtained an *.appx file, you can simply double-click it, and click the Install button. Or to avoid running into any issues, you can use the following PowerShell command:

  1. Open Start, search for Windows PowerShell, right-click the result, and select Run as administrator.

  2. Type the following command and press Enter:

    Add-AppxPackage -Path PATH-TO-APPXFILE\APP.appx

    PowerShell command to install signed appx package on Windows 10
    PowerShell command to install unsigned appx package

Now you can simply open Start and launch the app like any other application.