Windows 8

by GRAPHISOFT and Marton Kiss · updated: 01.13.2016

Microsoft has ended support for Windows 8 on the 12th of January 2016

Microsoft has ended support for Windows 8 on the 12th of January 2016. GRAPHISOFT recommends to update all Windows 8 systems running GRAPHISOFT products either to Windows 8.1 or to Windows 10.

Compatibility notes to ArchiCAD on Windows 8

Please note that ArchiCAD 16 is the last release of ArchiCAD to support Windows XP and any 32-bit operating system. The next major release of ArchiCAD will be 64-bit only, and will support only 64-bit Operating Systems, including Windows 7 and Windows 8. Read more: Discontinued32BitSupport

GRAPHISOFT products are supported on Pro and Enterprise editions and are compatible with Home and Educational editions.

Compatible ArchiCAD versions

Supported versions

ArchiCAD 15 ArchiCAD 16 ArchiCAD 17, 18 and 19
Full/Edu Start Solo Full/Edu Start Solo Full/Edu Start Solo
Windows 8 32-bit * * * (./) (./) (./)
Windows 8 64-bit * (./) (./) (./) (./)


* This version of Windows is capable of running ArchiCAD, but is not officially supported by GRAPHISOFT

Not supported versions

  • ArchiCAD 15 and older version may be run on Windows 8, though these were designed to work with older versions of the operating system. As a result of this there is no official support for operating system specific problems.


  • ArchiCAD 16 running on Windows 8

Compatible ArchiCAD versions

BIM Server and BIMcloud:

  • BIM Server v18 and BIMcloud are compatible with Windows 8 (64-bit)
  • BIM Server v17 is compatible with Windows 8 (64-bit)

BIMx Desktop Viewer:

  • BIMx Desktop Viewer 17 and 18 are compatible with Windows 8 (32-bit and 64-bit)

Windows 8 versions

Windows Pro

  • ArchiCAD 17 and 18 versions are supported and tested by GRAPHISOFT on Windows and 64-bit platforms. ArchiCAD 15 and ArchiCAD 16 versions are supported and tested by GRAPHISOFT on Windows Pro 32-bit and 64-bit platforms. Please note that ArchiCAD 16 is the last version that supports 32-bit operating systems. (And the last version that supports Windows XP.) Based on this it is strongly recommended to use the 64-bit version of Windows 8, which of course requires 64-bit compatible CPU (e.g. Intel Core 2 Duo and newer).

Windows 8, Windows 8 Enterprise

  • Windows 8 and Windows 8 Enterprise differ in features that do not affect the correct functionality of ArchiCAD. These editions were not tested officially.
  • More about Windows 8 editions on Wikipedia.

Windows RT

  • Windows RT is a Windows 8 version that will be only available as preinstalled OS for ARM based devices, such as tablet PCs (e.g. Microsoft Surface). ArchiCAD does not support ARM based devices.

Upgrade checklist

  • Study the Windows 8 article for any known issues, difficulties
  • Back up all of your data, including ArchiCAD / BIM Server specific data before upgrading the operating system. When switching from 32-bit to 64-bit, you need to perform a clean install of Windows. This means that you have to re-install all your software applications and migrate all your data after installing the system.
  • Upload all downloaded Software keys to the License Pool
  • Return all borrowed licenses before upgrading the OS
  • Allow yourself enough time for the upgrade, do not upgrade the OS close to a deadline
  • Install Windows.
  • Install ArchiCAD. Your ArchiCAD install DVD includes both 32-bit and 64-bit version of ArchiCAD, and the correct version will automatically selected when you run the automated installer wizard.
  • Install all updates for the new operating system
  • Install all updates for GRAPHISOFT products
  • Install the Windows 8 compatible protection key driver
  • Test ArchiCAD and the BIM Server

Known issues

Wibu/CodeMeter driver compatibility

  • The first version of the CodeMeter driver that supports Windows 8 is version 4.50. You can find the latest GRAPHISOFT tested CodeMeter drivers here.The Wibu-Key driver that is available on the same page works well if you use a Wibu key locally – directly connected to the computer. If you would like to run a Wibu Server on Windows 8 / Windows Server 2012 you need to wait until Wibu-Systems releases a compatible driver (6.10).

.NET Framework

  • ArchiCAD 15 and older versions require .NET Framework 2.0, which is no longer part of the the default Windows installation. During the installation Windows offers the installation of the latest .NET Framework, make sure you choose Download and install this feature there./!\ Not doing so may lead to not working features in ArchiCAD like the Movie Player or the ArchiCAD YouTube channel.
    • dotnet.png

Cannot find PDF file or viewer

  • Issue:
    • PDF files such as the ArchiCAD Reference Guide cannot be opened directly from ArchiCAD’s help menu. ArchiCAD gives Cannot find PDF file or viewer error message.


    • Windows 8 has a built in PDF reader called Reader that runs on the so called Windows 8 user interface. ArchiCAD cannot trigger that reader and even if you install a third party PDF reader like Adobe Reader the default will remain the built in Reader.


    • As a workaround browse for the PDF documentation in a file manager and then open the files with any PDF reader. You can find the documentation in this folder: C:\Program Files\GRAPHISOFT\ArchiCAD 16\Documentationpdf.png

Missing Start Menu items

  • Issue:
    • The traditional Start Menu items are missing.


    • With Windows 8 the Start Menu has been discontinued. Applications can be run using the new Windows 8 user interface. This interface only lists executable applications, as a result some previous Start Menu items are not listed.


    • All of the files can be directly accessed through a file manager. Some examples:
      • Readme first: C:\Program Files\GRAPHISOFT\ArchiCAD 16\Read Me First.htm
      • ArchiCAD Help: C:\Program Files\GRAPHISOFT\ArchiCAD 16\Help\ArchiCAD Help.htm
      • BIM Server Reference Guide: C:\Program Files\GRAPHISOFT\BIM Server\GRAPHISOFT BIM Server Reference Guide.pdf

Cannot open the Read Me

  • Issue:
    • The Read Me cannot be opened from the Installation Front End.


    • Browse in the file system for the Read Me file:
      • Open File Explorer
      • Select the optical drive under Computer
      • Right click on it to reach the context menu
      • Open
      • Open Read Me First.html

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