Your computer contains all kinds of hardware such as floppy drives, DVD / CD-ROM drives, network adapters, sound and video cards, and external devices such as printers, keyboards, monitors, and USB drives. P>
When you install an operating system (OS) such as Windows or Linux, that OS must be able to interact with the hardware on your computer to display items, play sounds and videos, and write or read data from the hard drive. as well as other tasks.
This is where drivers come in. A driver is a small piece of software that acts as a translator between the device and the OS and the programs that use the device. The driver tells the OS and installed programs how to communicate with your computer’s hardware.
For example, when you buy a printer, it usually comes with a driver on a CD (or, in recent years, a URL to download the latest driver software from the Internet) that tells the OS how to print the information on each page. Without a driver, the printer will not know how to interpret the data sent to it, even if the data enters the printer.
NOTE. Many drivers, such as keyboard drivers and mouse drivers, are already installed with the OS when you buy your computer.
View drivers in Device Manager
The drivers installed on your system that interact with hardware devices are managed using Device Manager. To access Device Manager in Windows, type device manager in the search box on the Start menu.
All categories of your hardware, such as audio I / O, video adapters, DVD / CD-ROM drives, network adapters, mice and other pointing devices, are listed, and specific devices are listed under each heading.
If you are having problems with your device, it is helpful to know the version of the driver currently installed on your system. You may need to send this information to the manufacturer via email or telephone. It is also useful if you yourself are trying to find a solution on the Internet at various sites and forums.
To check the driver version, right-click it in Device Manager and choose Properties from the pop-up menu.
In the Properties dialog box, click the Driver tab. The list includes the driver vendor, date, version, and signer. Additional driver information can be obtained by clicking the Driver Details button.
Note that you can also update the driver from this tab, disable the driver, uninstall the driver, and even roll back the driver software to a previously installed version if the update caused a problem with the device.
NOTE. You can also update the driver software using the Update Driver Software option in the pop-up menu shown in the previous image.
You can also download updated drivers directly from the manufacturer’s website for a specific device, such as a video or sound card. When you download drivers from the manufacturer, the driver software comes as an installable file with a wizard that walks you through the installation. In this case, you are updating the driver directly and not through the device manager.
It is generally not advisable to fix something that is not broken. If your computer is working fine, chances are you don’t need to update your drivers. In my previous post on whether you should update your BIOS, I came to the same conclusion.
You should only try to do this if you have a problem with your device. However, graphics cards may be an exception. If you are using an NVidia or ATI / AMD graphics card, updating to the latest version from the manufacturer instead of using the generic driver that comes with Windows can significantly improve graphics speed and quality.
Make sure you are using the correct drivers for your devices. In most cases, this is more important than using the latest drivers. Sometimes Windows will automatically install device drivers. However, you can prevent Windows from doing this
You can back up your device drivers in case you ever need to reinstall Windows on the same computer. If you are installing Windows on a different computer, you will need to install the latest drivers if the computer has different hardware. There are several useful tools that make it easy to back up or update device drivers on your computer. Enjoy!