What are drivers and why update them
Even though this article is about updating your video drivers. There is the generic information about all drivers.
Drivers are small pieces of software which go between the peripheral hardware (your video card) in this case and your operating system. They allow different devices (peripherals) work with different operating systems.
The operating system writer publishes an interface specification and the device manufacturers knowing their own hardware properties write the device driver to talk to both the hardware and the OS.
There are many reasons that the device driver may need be updated. These include:
Changes made to the operating system – new service packs may need upgraded drivers.
Bugs discovered in the drivers themselves – perhaps your video card driver does not work with a certain game which uses a feature in other video drivers but not that of this manufacturer.
Security holes are discovered – and you know that chances are someone will use those security holes to get into your computer.
How to manully update your video card driver
Before updating your video drivers I recommend that you save your curent drivers (you may have more than one for the graphic subsystem) and set a restore point. If you do not know how to do that I do not recommend that you update your video driver manually.
1. When updating your video card driver manually you first open your control panel.
2. Next open the display properties and select the settings panel.
This will show you the video card model and manufacturer:
3. Next go to the video card manufacturer’s site
Now that you know the model and manufacturer of your video card go to the manufacturer’s web site. Use your favorite search engine to find the manufacturer’s site.
Next navigate the site (typically it is downloads first then select model number and ultimately operating system).
Then download the new driver and run it by clicking on the driver. The whole process takes less than fifteen or so minutes. The problem is that if things go wrong they can really go wrong.
And suppose you mess up your sound card driver you lose your sound, but you can still restore your driver. But if your video card driver update goes wrong you may end up having no video and then where are you.
I imagine you can still boot up in the safe mode but I for one would rather not find out.
A simpler method which costs money is to use an automatic updater. This is much simpler and fool proof but does cost a little money. However, it may well be worth it as a friend made some mistakes in updating her computer and it cost her four hundred dollars to make her computer to run again.
You can always download these for free and scan the computer to tell you each of the drivers that need be updated. Then you can decide if you want to buy the product or not.
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