Medal of Honor: Airborne won’t install? Blame Ageia/Nvidia’s PhysX drivers

March 25, 2009

I’ve just bought the 18-month old Medal of Honor: Airborne game  – PC version – and felt I would share my disappointment with the situation I was faced with: the game would not install. And give you a way out.

If you had or have the same problem – it could very apply to other games -, read on!

First of all, yes, I noticed,  the game is not brand new – I had been waiting for a price drop… in France (everything coming a while later in the European Gaming market… Rock Band 2 instruments, anyone? – and this makes the post even more relevant.

So, back to what is happening: you insert the DVD in the tray, launch setup, enter your serial number. Ageia’s (not Nvidia’s at that time) drivers start installing and… that’s it. Nothing else happens, not even a warning message saying the installation has been aborted. That, you have to notice it by yourself, and that is quite frankly the easy part :)

When such a thing happens, you can either use your brain or Google; I used Google. Reading a few forums posts eventually got me on track: the PhysX drivers were to blame. What precisely happens is the installation wizard notices a newer version of the PhysX drivers and rather then (a) skipping the install of the drivers (b) downgrading silently, in case of an hypothetical compatibility issue that would impede the game to run with newer drivers or (c) notifying the user of the situation… the game installation is just canceled, how lame?

So, ‘what should I do?’ you might ask? Piece of cake:

  1. Uninstall the PhysX drivers,
  2. Install the game and therefore an old version of the PhysX drivers,
  3. Update the PhysX drivers – recommended if you want to ensure the newer games will play properly

That’s it, you’re good to go!

But I’m not. I just felt like I would add a few lines.

I sincerely hope the developers of such softwares will be – or rather have been since MOH: Airborne’s release –  smart enough to improve the user experience. Even Microsoft got it right with DirectX, didn’t they? Is it so hard to think that newer versions of the software will come out and test the current installation process against it? Programming 101, right?

This kind of issues really makes me envy the simplicity of console systems sometimes.




  1. This blog’s great!! Thanks :).

  2. thanks for your help :)
    worked for me!

  3. I’m glad it worked :)

    Thanks for having left a comment!

  4. The internet is full of people who can’t find the Physx entry in their “Remove Programs” list. Including me. So uninstalling won’t work.
    Any other idea?

  5. Hello karatedog,

    I haven’t been faced with this problem myself but there are a few things you could try I guess.

    1) I assume you looked thoroughly in ‘Add/Remove Programs’, checked at Ageia and Nvidia. My actual entry is named ‘Ageia Game System Software’.

    2) Have you tried to install the latest version of the drivers? Doing so might (1) overwrite any existing file and (2) create the missing entry.

    3) Some softwares are dedicated to software (clean and complete) removal. You could give a try at driversweeper.

    Please let me know if any of the above solution work for you or if you find a viable alternative. I’ll update my post consequently :)



    Just spent three hours trying my best to get this installed… Googled the problem and found your solution. Thanks a lot.
    I removed the program through control panel and away we go. Thanks – good job these sites are more helpful than EA’s own website!!!

  7. Hi Philip. I’m glad I could help. Have fun playing!

  8. The Physics drivers are installed when you update your graphics card drivers, so to uninstall the Physics drivers, you may have to uninstall your graphics card drivers, and then install an older driver.

    nVidia has had this problem before when they’ve updated their drivers, the updates will cause older programs not to work, incompatibility with older versions of Physics, etc.

    If you don’t see a Physics listing in “Add/Remove” look for nVidia driver listing, and then uninstall that. After you have installed an older driver and know that Airborne works, reinstall the newer version of the drivers and test to see if will still run.

  9. Thanks for your input John. Still, if I remember correctly, you have two separate entries, one for PhysX, one for Nvidia. Did any of you try World at War by the way?

  10. I just had that same problem. Thank you for this post. It was just in time before I scratched the disc and threw it against a tree…

  11. hey! i have that problem to. but in my add/remove list o only have NVIDIA PhysX not Ageia. is that the same thing? because i dont want my graphic card to crash. :P

  12. Hello Fredrik,

    You can proceed as described, no worries. What I implied by “Ageia’s (not Nvidia’s at that time)” is that Nvidia took over Ageia and re-badged the software (PhysX). But it works the same way :)

    Tell us if you experience any unexpected difficulty – though I think you won’t!

  13. Thanks, i have one more question. What would happen if i install wrong PhysX drivers ? I want to be sure ^^

  14. Anyways i install it and it was no problem, so thanks for the help :)

  15. I found the same solution on another site i’m playing the game with the physx provided on the DVD.
    I found an alternative which I haven’t tried yet here. The first link is to a forum, scroll down until you see a post by misternicky. In his post he provides a link to a download for a fix. Here they are:

    post: http://forums.nvidia.com/index.php?showtopic=73215



    hope that helps.


  16. The easy way is to open the disc by clicking on my computer then right clicking on the disc drive with MOHA in the drive, select open then open the physx folder on the disk and install the driver from there. Then auto run the game to install as normal. No need to uninstall reinstall and then update.

  17. thanks man, that did the trick,first time i have had this problem, not good, but thank you

  18. Dude i cant see Ageia physx on Add/Remove Programs , revo uninstaller , and orbit uninstaller D: pls help

  19. @ Yuh Honjo : browsing through old comments and replies, consider that (1) Nvidia took over Ageia and re-badged the software (PhysX) and (2) you should look for nVidia driver listing, and then uninstall that.


  20. An alternative way of installing MOHAB is like this:

    1) Run Medal of Honor Airborne_code.exe in the ‘Support’ directory of the DVD and enter a code.
    2) Go to Start->Run (or Press Win+R)
    3) Type: “cmd”
    4) Type X: where X must be replaced with the DVD letter
    5) Type “msiexec /package autorun.dat
    6) Enjoy installation

  21. I have installed MOHAB in my HP HDx18. But when I open the game message comes see if you installed Physx Driver properly. I will try your solution. What Physx Drivers update release would you recommend me for my windows Vista. If possible reply me at my email nadeemuz@hotmail.com

  22. @Nadeem: Did you try reading the post just above yours? It has a working fix…

  23. Easiest way to do this if you cant find Physx in your remove entries list, is get an advanced uninstaller like with the likes of iolo@s system mechanic – otherwise its trying to find the msi entry which can be a real pain, their are lots of free advanced uninstallers but iolo is a paid for service, well worth the $15.

  24. Regarding MOH Airborne – this worked perfectly! thanks so much!

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