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I have a Lenovo ThinkPad T410 running a fresh install of Windows 7. A Windows 7 DVD was used for the installation, rather than the factory recovery procedure.

The current specs I have are:

  • Intel Core i5 CPU M520 @ 2.40GHz
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64-bit / (x86)32-bit

I plan on using it mainly for a local server running an Apache/MySQL config w/8GB RAM upgrade for Adobe CS6 capability.

Are there specific drivers I should install from the list provided by Lenovo to prevent compatibility issues?

Would it be wise to install recent subscription updates only?

Do I need older drivers to update from?

And should I install both 64/32-bit drivers since an (x86) sub directory exists?

Thanks for your help.

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Is the Win7 install from a MS DVD or from the Lenovo recovery procedure? –  sawdust Aug 10 '12 at 1:40
    
It's an MS DVD with a custom install, not an upgrade, so all partitions were erased previous to install. –  dcd018 Aug 10 '12 at 2:08

2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

[I did something similar with my Thinkpad. Before the Win7 install, I downloaded all of the most recent drivers and utilities, and put them on a USB flash drive. I installed the OEM drivers before performing repeated *Windows Update*s. BTW activating Win7 with the product key off the sticker required a phone call to Microsoft.]

Are there specific drivers I should install from the list provided by Lenovo to prevent compatibility issues?

Inspect the Device Manager for any devices tagged with big yellow question marks. When you are done, there should be no more Q marks. These devices are probably security or asset related devices, e.g. fingerprint reader, or non-standard devices like the "ThinkVantage" button. The tricky part is that Device Manager often cannot fully identify the device and tell you what kind of device is missing its driver.

Ideally you would want to install the manufacturer's version of all device drivers (rather than use Microsoft's default or a generic version) to ensure that you'll be able to utilize any enhancements the OEM may have installed/enabled for those devices. You may have to sort through the driver list to download just the most recent version of each driver for the HW installed in your PC. Fortunately the Windows driver installer will alert you if you try to install a driver "older" than what is already in use or if the device is not installed at all (e.g. you pick the wrong network driver).

Would it be wise to install recent subscription updates only?

Don't know what you mean by "subscription".

Lenovo, like other manufacturers, include a bunch of utilities with their PCs, such as wireless network configuration and battery monitoring programs. Theses utilities are sometimes available for download. It's up to you if you should install these, as they often duplicate existing Windows functionality; these OEM utilities are supposedly "more user friendly".

Do I need older drivers to update from?

No, you should be able to just install the latest version of each driver regardless of the currently installed version.

And should I install both 64/32-bit drivers since an (x86) sub directory exists?

No, just the 64-bit drivers should be installed. The OS is 64-bit, and it's just the userland programs that can run in 32-bit mode. (Actually that's an educated guess on my part, since there is no practical way that an OS can share one device between two drivers. In this case the 64-bit driver should be aware of the 32-bit mode if it's necessary.)

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Besided the excellent answer from sawdust, I would make sure that the 1) Lenovo Update is installed and 2) Lenovo Thinkvantage.

  1. simplifies updates regarding Lenovo/Thinkpad specifics
  2. has good tools for keeping track of System history, System tests etc. (Basically it is the PC doctor software).

Since you will be using the computer as a server, you can skip Access connection, which is great if you move between different networks and locations.

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