The DS4Windows is one of the simplest yet most powerful applications for remapping your PlayStation controller to your Windows 11 or 10 PC. If you are a new user then this is a getting started guide for DS4Windows, consisting of a complete detailed guide on how to download and set up DS4Windows and what are the things required on your Windows PC to run it.
What is DS4Windows?
DS4Windows is popular software that enables Windows users to use their PlayStation controller with their PC. In short, DS4 Windows makes it possible for you to use the PlayStation as well as Nintendo controllers on your Windows 10 and 11 PC by emulating the Xbox controller.
The software comes with options to remap or change the keybindings to suit your preferences (keyboard + mouse, joysticks, buttons, etc.) and allows you to play more games using your controller. You don’t need to buy an approved controller or play with only the mouse and keyboard. Use DS4Windows now and enjoy your controller on your Windows PC.
Requirements for DS4Windows
There are some pre-requirements that are needed to be met in order to make the DS4Windows work on your Windows PC. Here’re the things:
- Windows 10 or Windows 11 (Windows 8.1 or older are not supported)
- Microsoft .NET 5.0 or newer
- Visual C++ 2015-2019 Redistributable (x64 or x86).
- ViGEmBus driver latest driver (DS4Windows will install it automatically for you)
- Sony DualShock 4 or any other supported controller. See the list of supported controllers here.
- Connection of the controller with PC via:
- USB cable
- Sony Wireless Adapter
- Bluetooth 4.0 or newer. You can use an external Bluetooth dongle for Bluetooth connection or can use the built-in Bluetooth of your PC.
- Make sure to disable Xbox Configuration Support or PlayStation Configuration Support if you’re using Steam to play games.
How to Setup DS4Windows on your Windows 11 & 10 PC
The DS4Windows is a simple controller remapping software for Windows that enables users to use their PlayStation controllers with their PCs. DS4Windows provides users to use the PlayStation controller either wired or wirelessly and I’ll show you how you can in both ways.
But before that, you’ll need to set up the DS4Windows on your PC along with the prerequisites that are needed along with the DS4Windows application. Let’s begin.
1. Download & extract DS4Windows
Before doing anything in order to use your PlayStation controller on PC, you’ll need to get your Windows PC ready with DS4Windows installed. Here are the things that you’ll need in order to get started with the process:
- DualShock 4 controller
- Micro USB cable
- DS4Windows application – download the zip file from here.
- Bluetooth USB dongle (its optional and can be skipped if you have Bluetooth on your PC)
- File archiver utility e.g. WinRAR.
Once you are all set with all these things on your Windows PC, follow these steps to install DS4Windows and make running on your PC.
- The very first thing to start with is the DS4Windows zip file that you have downloaded. Right-click on the zip file, click on the Open with… option and finally select WinRAR or any other archiver utility that you have from the list.
- A WinRAR window will open. Select the DS4Windows folder and click on Extract to.
- Now, select the destination where you want the DS4Windows to be extracted, and finally click on OK.
- Once the extraction is done, your PC is successfully loaded with the DS4Windows software that can be loaded anytime when needed.
- Once the installation is done, your PC is successfully loaded with the DS4Windows software.
Now that your PC has the DS4Windows PC, now is the time to set it up on your PC to work properly. DS4Windows requires a number of things like ViGEmBus Drivers, .NET Framework, etc. to function properly on the PC. Let’s now begin the setup process.
2. Setting up DS4Windows
Let’s start with the wired connection first. There are controllers that offer wired connections via the micro-USB cable. Here’s how you can use the wired connection to pair the controller to the PC and use it in DS4Windows. Let’s begin.
- Do you remember the DS4Windows folder that you extracted previously? It’s time to head over to that folder. Open that DS4Windows folder, and double-click on the DS4Windows.exe file to launch the DS4Widows application.
- It will ask for the Microsoft .NET Framework to install if you have not already installed it. Hence click on Yes and it will bring you to the download page of the latest version of the .NET framework. But you’ll have to download the .NET v5.0 SDK. You can directly download it from here.
- Once done, again open the DS4Windows application. It will ask where you want the DS4Windows profiles and settings to be saved. You select either of the two options but I’ll recommend you select Program Folder just to maintain consistency.
- After selecting the location to save the settings and profiles, click on Yes on the User Account Control prompt window to enable the administrative rights for DS4Windows.
- And finally the Welcome to DS4Windows window will appear on the screen. Now, click on the “Step 1: Install ViGEmBus Driver” button to install it. It will download the required ViGEmBus driver and open its installer. Install it by following the on-screen instructions.
- In the next step if you’re on Windows 7 you’ll need to install the 360 Driver. To do so, you can click on the “Step 2: If on Windows 7, install 360 Driver” button.
- You can also complete the optional Steps 4 & 5. Once done, click on the Finished button to complete the DS4Windows one-time setup.
A big congratulations to you as you have successfully installed, extracted, and set up the DS4Windows application on your PC. Now, the only thing that remains is pairing your PlayStation controller to your PC. The controller offers wired (Micro-USB) and wireless (Bluetooth) connection facilities to establish the connection with your PC.
3. Pair PlayStation Controller to PC
DS4Windows can detect both wired and wireless controller connections and here is how you can pair your PS controller to your PC and use it on your DS4Windows application to configure it.
- Once you have clicked on the Finished button on the last step and have completed the DS4Windows configuration, you can simply connect your controller to your PC via the Micro-USB controller.
- If you want to connect your controller via Bluetooth, go to Settings > Bluetooth & devices > Add Device. Click on Bluetooth on the Add a device window and quickly press and hold the Share and PlayStation buttons on your PS4 controller for 3 seconds to make it discoverable.
- Once the Controller is discoverable, it will be displayed in the list of available Bluetooth devices on your PC. Click on it to pair it to your PC. After a successful pairing, the light bar of the controller will light up green and the controller will also get listed in DS4Windows under the Controllers tab.
And that’s it. You have successfully paired the Controller with your PC and that has been detected by the DS4Windows application as well. Now, you are good to go to personalize the controller and use it on your PC.
Personalizing the DualSense 5/4 Controller using DS4Windows
As I have told you, you have done all the parts that are needed to connect and use the PS4 controller to your Windows 10/11 PC. You have downloaded, extracted, set up, and paired your controller that is recognized by DS4Windows too.
Now, you are free to use the controller on your Windows the way you want. You have full control of your controller and you can customize the functioning of each and every component of your controller by using the DS4Windows application. For e.g.
- You can change the name of the controller.
- You can increase/decrease or on/off the controller rumble.
- You can change/adjust the controller light.
- You can set the controller to flash the light when its battery level reaches your set level.
- you can change the key mapping of the whole controller.
- You can customize or assign macro.
- And much more.
Use PlayStation Controllers on Windows like a Pro
So, that’s it. This is how you use the DS4Windows application on your Windows 11 or Windows 10 PCs to use your PS4 controller with it. In this guide, I have illustrated the complete procedure using the DS4 controller and Windows 11.
But using it on Windows 10 with other controllers like DualShock 4, DualSense 5, SwitchPro, and JoyCon controllers are also quite similar. I hope this guide was helpful and made it easier for you to use the DS4Windows to use your PlayStation controller on your Windows PC.