Troubleshooting Guide: How to Fix the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' Error While Signing Your Files

This guide will help you resolve the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' error that you might encounter while signing your files using the SignTool utility in Windows. Follow the step-by-step instructions to fix the issue and ensure successful signing of your files.

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SignTool is a command-line tool that digitally signs files, verifies signatures in files, or time-stamps files. It is included in the Windows Software Development Kit (SDK) and can be used by developers to sign their applications and ensure their integrity. However, you might encounter the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' error while trying to sign your files using this tool. This guide will help you resolve this issue and successfully sign your files.


Before you proceed with the troubleshooting steps, ensure that you have the following prerequisites in place:

Step 1: Verify the Installation of the Windows SDK

The first step is to ensure that the Windows SDK is installed on your computer. To do this, press Win + X and click on 'Apps and Features.'

Scroll through the list of installed programs and look for 'Windows Software Development Kit.' If it is not installed, download and install the latest version of the Windows SDK.

Step 2: Locate the Signtool.exe File

  1. After verifying the installation of the Windows SDK, locate the Signtool.exe file on your computer. Open File Explorer and navigate to the following directory:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\

Inside the 'bin' folder, you will find folders named after different Windows build numbers (e.g., 10.0.19041.0). Open the folder corresponding to the installed Windows SDK version.

Inside this folder, locate the 'x86' or 'x64' folder, depending on your system architecture. Open the folder, and you should find the 'signtool.exe' file.

Note: The exact path to the 'signtool.exe' file may vary depending on the Windows SDK version and system architecture.

Step 3: Add the Signtool.exe Directory to the PATH Environment Variable

Press Win + X and click on 'System.'

In the 'System' window, click on 'Advanced system settings' in the right sidebar.

In the 'System Properties' window, click on the 'Environment Variables' button.

In the 'Environment Variables' window, under 'System variables,' scroll down and select the 'Path' variable. Click on the 'Edit' button.

In the 'Edit environment variable' window, click on 'New' and paste the directory path where the 'signtool.exe' file is located (e.g., C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\10.0.19041.0\x86).

Click 'OK' to save the changes, and close the remaining windows.

Step 4: Verify that the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' Error is Resolved

Open a new Command Prompt or PowerShell window.

Type signtool and press Enter. If the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' error is resolved, you should see the SignTool utility's command reference.

You can now use the SignTool utility to sign your files without encountering the 'Signtool.exe Not Found' error.


Q1: How do I check the version of the Windows SDK installed on my computer?

To check the version of the Windows SDK installed on your computer, navigate to the directory C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\ and check the folder names inside the 'bin' folder. The folder names correspond to the Windows SDK build numbers (e.g., 10.0.19041.0).

Q2: Can I use SignTool on a non-Windows platform, like macOS or Linux?

SignTool is a Windows-based utility and is not available for macOS or Linux. However, you can use alternative tools like osslsigncode for Linux or electron-osx-sign for macOS to sign your files.

Q3: How do I determine whether my system is x86 or x64?

To determine your system architecture, press Win + X and click on 'System.' In the 'System' window, under 'Device specifications,' check the 'System type' field. It will display either '32-bit Operating System, x86-based processor' (x86) or '64-bit Operating System, x64-based processor' (x64).

Q4: Can I have multiple versions of the Windows SDK installed on my computer?

Yes, you can have multiple versions of the Windows SDK installed on your computer. Each version will have its own folder inside the C:\Program Files (x86)\Windows Kits\10\bin\ directory, named after the corresponding build number.

Q5: What is the difference between the SignTool utility and other signing tools like openssl?

SignTool is a Windows-based utility specifically designed for signing files, verifying signatures, and time-stamping files. It supports multiple signature algorithms and is compatible with various file formats. On the other hand, OpenSSL is a more general-purpose cryptography library and toolkit that provides various cryptographic functions, including signing and verifying files, but may not have the same level of compatibility and support for specific file formats as SignTool.

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