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I'm building my first computer with a friend's older parts. I seem to be having driver problems. Do I need a driver specific to my cpu + mobo? I'm on Win7 and I'm seeing CPU spikes every few seconds which freeze my system for a few seconds.

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closed as not a real question by Nifle, 8088, Sathya Sep 11 '11 at 12:14

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
How the bleep are we supposed to know what motherboard you have? –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Sep 10 '11 at 6:50
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well actually the question is: "do I need drivers". It sounds like perhaps the answer is "yes"? –  MedicineMan Sep 10 '11 at 7:33
    
You always need drivers. What you should be asking is "Do I need additional drivers that aren't included with Windows 7 for my XXXX motherboard?". –  Ignacio Vazquez-Abrams Sep 10 '11 at 7:41
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Well, to be fair on MedicineMan, there was a 'CPU driver' for AMD processors on Windows XP and 2003 that fixed a timing problem with some apps, but I do not believe one is needed for Windows 7. –  Linker3000 Sep 10 '11 at 7:57
    
Considering Microsoft's ridiculous efforts towards backwards compatibility, I would be shocked to know that the driver is still required. . . –  surfasb Sep 10 '11 at 8:57

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

I had similar problems when I first moved to Windows 7 running a similar processor/motherboard. The problem probably is driver-related, but probably not for your cpu/motherboard. Instead, look at your graphics and audio devices. Windows Vista/7 brought a new architecture for driver development for both audio and video devices. A lot of hardware manufactures did a poor job of preparing new Windows 7/Vista compatible drivers for this old audio and video hardware. In my case, it was the graphics card that was causing the problem and I actually ended up needing a new card to solve it.

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Thanks Joel, after looking at the problem for a few days, it does seem to be some problem with drivers. Now that I have indications that it is not cpu / mobo, not wifi card related, it does seem to be coming down to video or audio. It's good to hear that others have run into similar problems as well. –  MedicineMan Sep 12 '11 at 6:20

First, for Windows 7 you won't need CPU drivers. The idea is that most of the problems which were common in that era are now solved. Some of them were different tick counts (read-outs from time stamp counter) on cores of the same processor, power states new and so on. Application developers too were encouraged to move away from time measuring systems which relied on non-hibernating computers with single core and constant clock frequency so that removes some of the reasons why additional CPU drivers were required in that era.

As for the motherboard, it's usually a good idea to download the newest drivers from the chipset manufacturer. Motherboard manufacturers often have outdated drivers on their websites! If you don't know which chipset you've got, get a program such as CPU-Z and use it to obtain the needed info.

Finally, we've come to the CPU spikes problem. While getting newest drivers is considered good practice, there's no guarantee that you'll get rid of the CPU spikes. It could be a badly programmed application that's putting load on the processor or something similar. You could use a program like Process Explorer to see which programs are causing problems.

So update the drivers and post results and we'll see what to do next.

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