View Full Version : How to update drivers

Peter M
23-05-2006, 10:19 PM
Is there such thing as a programme to run that will search all the drivers on my PC & download & instal any required updates for me? If not then what is the best way to search for updates and how do you actually get them to instal in the right place? Never done this before so treat me like a newbie on this topic. I am running Win XP on HP Pavilion PC. Thanks.

Speedy Gonzales
23-05-2006, 10:53 PM
Well with brands like Dell, or HP/Compaq, its better to go to the HP site, for HP and Compaq systems, and do a search for your model. Or the Part / serial #.

And then download the BIOS / video drivers, and whatever else u need.

Thats one reason I dont like brands like HP and Dell. Too many models to search for just to get updates. I'll rather make a system up, with a mobo like an ASUS. it'd be easier for me to get drivers etc for it.

You can usually see whats missing (if u format), and if u have no cd or hidden partition. Just go to device manager and see whats got a ? beside it.

Windowsupdates would most probably pick up drivers it needs, BUT the drivers on this site usually stuff things up. So, DON'T rely on the Windowsupdate site.

Most of the drivers etc have setup.exe files in them, and zipped. So, you usually have to unzip the file and then run the setup.exe file.

Or if the files / whatever are small (usually less than 100k or 1mb). They may also be zipped, and there's an inf file in them.

With these kinds of files, you can go to device manager, click on the device that needs updating point it to the folder u unzipped the file to, and point it to the inf file. Then it'll load the drivers / files, for whatever device.

Or if u want XP updates, go to the windowsupdate site.

BUT if u buy something separate (something that wasnt part of the system), you go to the manufacturer's site. And do a search for the model/brand of whatever it is.

Download the drivers and install them.

Peter M
24-05-2006, 10:15 PM
Thanks for that detailed reply Speedy. Good info. I was thinking more along the lines that my system is probably about 4yrs old and you always hear things like " make sure you have the latest drivers installed". Was kinda hoping there was some programme I could run that would scan all the drivers on my PC and say these ones need updating because there is an updated one available. There are no problem devices showing on Device manager. Just want to keep my system in best possible order.

24-05-2006, 10:25 PM
If your computer is running fine, then you really don't have to update any drivers. The only ones I would look for is perhaps your video card driver and motherboard driver, but as I said if it works perfectly fine now ... ;)

Do not update your BIOS unless you have a specific problem that is resolved in that update. A bad BIOS flash (update) runs the risk of losing your motherboard.

25-05-2006, 06:18 PM
If you go to www.driveragent.com, you can download a small application (free) that will interrogate your pc and tell you which drivers are out of date. You then have two choices. You can join their club for $30 US a year and then download the new drivers from their site, or you can go to the manufacturers web site for the particular driver that needs updating (probably the better option for a one-off). It seems to work well and I have found it saves a heap of hassles.

Graham L
25-05-2006, 06:24 PM
I'm with Jen: If it's not broken, don't fix it.

That mantra: "install the latest driver" is mostly rubbish. True, installing the latest driver will often fix a problem. So will installing the original driver. That's because installing the driver fixes the wrong settings which were the real problem. :D If hardware works with a driver, and it stops working, it's usually the settings that have been clouted. The driver software doesn't stop working all by itself. It needs help.

Speedy Gonzales
25-05-2006, 07:40 PM
Thats true. Like I think the ATI drivers for the videocard here, (from the CD), are from 19/1/05, according to device manager.

And the latest v of the drivers from the ASUS site are from 21/4/06. And at 121mb I dont think I'll be getting these updates in a hurry.

On dialup lol. Those drivers and the ATI drivers from the ATI site, are pretty useless.

And to install either one, u need .Net 1.1 which itself sux.

After downloading 3 versions of the latest drivers previously, and it not keeping the settings, and freezing everytime (not freezing the system but it took too long, to get into the config screen), I gave up.

I'll rather use the old drivers. At least its one click to select the TV button, and it stays there.