I've been fighting to get chirp working with my father's baofeng radios. The only computer that he has access to has Win 7 installed. The manufacturer drivers won't work with win7. I tried using the profilic drivers (did the whole install, etc.) and haven't had any success.

Chirp is giving the following error message: could not open port : [Error 3] The system cannot find the path specified.

Any help is appreciated.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Please specify what brand and model of cable you are using. Usually the USB chip is in the cable. $\endgroup$
    – Kevin Reid AG6YO
    Jul 19, 2015 at 20:19
  • $\begingroup$ It's this one. The included driver cd does not load, it just spins around in the drive for a while and then fails to open. $\endgroup$
    – Urge
    Jul 22, 2015 at 10:46
  • $\begingroup$ That error is most likely a cable problem. Amazon is really good with returns. You might want to exchange it. Mine worked on my Win7 box without any extra drivers. The CD probably just contains a copy of CHIRP. $\endgroup$
    – SDsolar
    Jan 2, 2017 at 17:53
  • $\begingroup$ There is a comment on that Amazon page that discusses this: "I bought a cable and it worked fine, the problem is that the CD that they send with the programming cable didn't work with the radio. But I just went to the Baofeng site and downloaded the free programming program.." Perhaps the Baofeng software includes a driver. Once loaded, you could then just use CHIRP. $\endgroup$
    – Lance
    Mar 25, 2017 at 0:27
  • $\begingroup$ It may be DOA, sure. But remember that it is just a regular FDMI circuit in the USB plug pod. Most machines should support it natively. If you get a "this USB device is not recognized", then you start to suspect the cable. i trust everybody knows not to bother allowing your system to waste time searching the web for an answer, unless they are running Win10. $\endgroup$
    – SDsolar
    May 29, 2017 at 5:37

3 Answers 3


Drivers are not required for the radio, but for the USB cable, as it has to provide a serial port via USB.

A long workaround could be:

  • Download a Linux distro that can run from a USB drive in persistent mode, like Ubuntu.
  • Download and install CHIRP on Linux.
  • Let Linux handle it for you.

I'm saying this because in my case it worked right away on Linux without any problem.

  • $\begingroup$ Yeah I can see how that would be tempting, unfortunately this setup is for my parents who hate learning to new versions of Windows. I just can't see them being comfortable with switching to Linux. $\endgroup$
    – Urge
    Jul 22, 2015 at 16:21
  • $\begingroup$ They don't need to switch to Linux, they need to configure the radio just once... so... $\endgroup$
    – 9F48
    Jul 22, 2015 at 22:03

You might have some luck with Zadig: http://zadig.akeo.ie/

It's a Windows tool for replacing installed drivers with generics compatible with common devices. If the baofeng cable is just be a serial-USB adapter, it might work.

Also, I bought a cable from Amazon that was DOA. Most are cheaply manufactured, it might just be a bad cable.

  • $\begingroup$ I'm with the DOA idea. And fortunately, Amazon is really good about returns. $\endgroup$
    – SDsolar
    Jan 2, 2017 at 17:56
  • $\begingroup$ This is interesting but I don't see mention of FDMI. How did you run across this? $\endgroup$
    – SDsolar
    May 29, 2017 at 7:00

I know this is an old question, but I recently had to setup Chirp again on a new computer and have long since lost the driver CD that came with my cable... thus I was having the same problem. The issue is that it's not really a USB cable per say. What your computer is doing is emulating an analog COM port through the USB cable, and it has to have special instructions (i.e. software drivers) that tell the hardware (the USB port) how to do that.

I solved it by going directly to the Baofeng website driver page. They only have one driver installation for Windows, and although I am using Windows 10 and you asked for Windows 7, they have this note:

*Includes the following version of of the Windows operating system: Windows 7, Windows Server 2008 R2 and Windows 8, 8.1, Windows server 2012 R2, Windows Server 2016 and Windows 10

What you will need to know is if your dad's computer is running off of 32 bit or 64 bit software. Your computer will not run the opposite type. Also, make sure you download the setup executable file (link on the righthand side) and not the link under the "Processor Architecture" table, as that file is really just the source code for the drivers. I doubt you want to compile the drivers yourself!

Once I installed the drivers, I just restarted Chirp and the USB appeared as a COM port when I tried to export to the radio.

Chirp screenshot showing Emulated COM Port


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