The Fix: BF4 kicked by PunkBuster bug

  • Battlefield 3 and 4 have only recently hit Steam, and it’s more than a welcome sight for whining fans.
  • But for many players who have taken the opportunity to collect their titles on the Steam platform, frustration is high.
  • Punkbuster regularly kicks players about 30 seconds into a match.
  • This is due to the fact that PunkBuster isn’t packaged correctly in Battlefield titles; it includes an older version of PB that doesn’t work well with servers.
Updated February 2024This tool will stop these errors and fix common problems: Get it at this link
  1. Download and install the software.
  2. It will scan your computer to find problems.
  3. The tool will then correct the issues that were discovered.

You Have Been Kicked By Punkbuster

Battlefield 4 gets booted from PunkBuster for a number of reasons, including corrupted files, out-of-date versions, and blocked installers.

Punkbuster Kick

As you’ve been playing America’s Army Proving Grounds, you’ve actually been enjoying it a lot. However, today is your lucky day, you get kicked for some stupid punkbuster error. In this post, I’ll give you a quick fix for Punkbuster, or almost permanent…until the game is updated and punkbuster too…I guess it’ll still work…anyhow, let’s get started:

During gameplay in games such as Battlefield 4, there’s an error message stating “kicked by PunkBuster – you have been kicked.”. Using PunkBuster will allow you to identify players who are using something illegal to improve their performance.

Fans who have been disappointed by the PC Origin platform for one reason or another will be delighted by the release of the Battlefield 3 and 4 tracks on Steam.

Battlefield 2042 Keeps Kicking Me Out

It has been crashing to desktop constantly for me over the past three days with Battlefield 2042. If Battlefield 2042 crashes or freezes, try using the “verify integrity of game files” tool on Steam if you’re having problems with it. I assumed I would have to wait for the first patch, but there may have been an easy fix all along. 

What Is Punkbuster Bf4

It detects players who use anything to enhance their performance in-game illegally by using the PunkBuster engine (including Battlefield 4) in many games. Some users, however, do not use any cheats at all. They receive a message that says “Kicked by PunkBuster” without any explanation. However, PunkBuster sometimes backfires and causes problems even if they do not use any cheats.

Punkbuster Bf3

The PunkBuster software is used in online games to detect cheating software. By scanning the memory contents on the local computer, it can detect cheating software. Computers identified as cheating may not be allowed to connect to protected servers. Even Balance, Inc. develops and publishes PunkBuster. Its aim is to isolate cheaters so that they do not interfere with legitimate games.

The PunkBuster kicks BF4 problem can be caused by a malfunctioning service, a firewall, a malfunctioning antivirus program, and a malfunctioning firewall.

Added to the fact that the games come with free DLCs to ensure the remaining player base won’t break further, the games are also likely to boost the number of servers above the 6,9,000 it sees during a typical weekday. Weekends and evenings see much higher numbers. Players who have picked up their titles on Steam are frustrated, however, because Punkbuster kicks them out about 30 seconds into a match, which causes them a lot of frustration.

Punkbuster Setup

PB Setup is a utility that allows you to update PunkBuster. The PunkBuster Setup homepage can be found here.

The game has been disconnected due to an error: PunkBuster kicked player ‘dropbearGSH’ for a period of 0 minutes… RESTRICTION: Disallowed Program/Driver [89262]

If PunkBuster is set to manual, you will have an issue. You will need to change it to automatic by pressing Windows + R and going to service. 

While Steam reviews have included complaints from fans frustrated with the game because they didn’t get a chance to play a little Battlefield, the problem can be quickly fixed. Due to the fact that PunkBuster is not packaged correctly in Battlefield titles, it does not work well with servers because it is an older version of the game.

What is the cause of the BF4 Kicked by PunkBuster error on Windows?

What is the cause of the BF4 Kicked by PunkBuster error on Windows?

We have compiled a list of causes we’ve found to be fairly simple to solve. Check out the list below for these causes that have been confirmed by others.

Battlefield 4 Kicked By Punkbuster

After joining a game, I am allowed to play for 15 seconds before getting kicked:

PunkBuster is not working – the recommended solution to this problem is to reinstall PunkBuster and update to the latest version. Malfunctioning software is one of the most common causes, and many users have benefited from uninstalling the current version and installing the latest version.

The PunkBuster service is not working properly – The PunkBuster service should run continuously and should reopen as soon as it is closed. This can be set in the properties of the service and is an easy fix.

If your Windows Firewall or third-party antivirus software interferes with the PunkBuster service, you may encounter the Battlefield 4 kicked by PunkBuster error. To resolve this, add the game and PunkBuster to your security programs’ exclusions list:

Windows Defender Firewall – The program may be blocked by the Windows Defender firewall and we recommend that you make an exception for the executable!

How do I fix the BF4 Kicked by PunkBuster error on Windows?

Updated: February 2024

We highly recommend that you use this tool for your error. Furthermore, this tool detects and removes common computer errors, protects you from loss of files, malware, and hardware failures, and optimizes your device for maximum performance. This software will help you fix your PC problems and prevent others from happening again:

  • Step 1 : Install PC Repair & Optimizer Tool (Windows 10, 8, 7, XP, Vista).
  • Step 2 : Click Start Scan to find out what issues are causing PC problems.
  • Step 3 : Click on Repair All to correct all issues.


How do I fix the BF4 Kicked by PunkBuster error on Windows?


A few options are available if multiplayer isn’t available:

Update Steam

The Steam app has been updated to fix this problem. If you haven’t started it recently, you may not have it yet. To update Steam, follow these instructions:

  1. Once you’re able to play Battlefield 4, leave the game.
  2. Make sure Steam is completely turned off.
  3. Make sure Steam is updated by restarting it.
  4. It might be worth a try again to play Battlefield 4.
  5. Having problems with Battlefield 4? Try fixing it via Steam if it is still causing issues.

You will have to manually install PunkBuster

You can also try manually installing Punkbuster if the solution above doesn’t work.


You are either missing Punkbuster or it hasn’t been installed yet.

  1. Battlefield 4 can be found in the program files (x86)Origin GamesBattlefield 4 folder (by default).
  2. The _Install folder can be found in the root of your computer.
  3. You will find a folder called Punkbuster in this folder.
  4. Redist should be opened.
  5. Punkbuster can be updated or repaired by running pbsvc.exe.

I do not have these files

  1. The Even Balance website has the direct download link for PunkBuster.
  2. All Windows games will be installed with the selected version.
  3. Launch pbsetup.exe after you have downloaded the file.
  4. The EULA must be accepted.
  5. Update PunkBuster as instructed.
  6. You can now add a game by clicking Add Game.
  7. The menu will drop down to let you select Battlefield 4.
  8. You can now add a game by clicking Add Game.
  9. In order to restart Battlefield 4, click on Check for Updates.

In the event that you are kicked out of the game with the error: PunkBuster kicked the ass of the player “your name” (for 0 minutes). RESTRICTION: Service failure: PnkBstrA.exe, reinstalling Punkbuster manually will still work.

RECOMMENATION: Click here for help with Windows errors.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Go to the Battlefield 4 installation folder (by default C: Program Files (x86)Origin GamesBattlefield 4).
  2. Go to your _Install folder.
  3. In this folder, open your Punkbuster folder.
  4. Open the redist folder.
  5. Find pbsvc.exe and run it to update or repair Punkbuster.

Make sure your antivirus program is not blocking Punkbuster, also check your Windows firewall.

If you found PunkBuster on your computer, it is always running. (Check the "Services" or "Task Manager" menu and you might see the PnkBstrA.exe file). However, PunkBuster probably doesn't consume a lot of resources - if any - and it's not a virus. It is 100% safe to install on your computer.

Type "services" (without quotation marks) and press "Enter" to open the "Services" window. In the "services" window, scroll down and double click on "PnkBstra" or "PunkBuster". In the "Startup Type" window, click "Disabled" and then click "OK" to save your changes. PunkBuster will be removed from the startup stage and will no longer work.

Website | + posts

Mark Ginter is a tech blogger with a passion for all things gadgets and gizmos. A self-proclaimed "geek", Mark has been blogging about technology for over 15 years. His blog,, covers a wide range of topics including new product releases, industry news, and tips and tricks for getting the most out of your devices. If you're looking for someone who can keep you up-to-date with all the latest tech news and developments, then be sure to follow him over at Microsoft.