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There is this feature in Windows 7: Search automatically for updated driver software. I have used it in hope that Windows will automatically find ADB drivers for Android-based phone. Unfortunately, everything I get is Windows was unable to install your ADB.

From what I remember this feature has never worked for me, even in times of Windows XP.

To make it a real question (and not only a complain):

  • How to make Windows to automatically download a driver? (e.g. Is there something that needs to be turned on somewhere in Control Panel?)
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closed as not constructive by grawity, Dave M, Nifle, 8088, Renan Feb 16 '13 at 21:40

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One second. What's ADB? – pratnala Feb 16 '13 at 14:19
ADB is "Android Debug Bridge" - this is helpful when you are developing applications for Android phones. – smbear Feb 16 '13 at 14:22
Aren't ADB drivers a part of the SDK? – pratnala Feb 17 '13 at 11:54
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Yes, it works – as long as the manufacturer has submitted the drivers to Windows Update.

If the manufacturer hasn't done so (for example, they almost never submit drivers for debug/reflash interfaces), then it's not like Windows can just download the first result from Google...

To see a complete list of what's available through Windows Update, visit the Microsoft Update Catalog site in IE, install the ActiveX control and search for ADB drivers:


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I'll accept this as an answer. Maybe you know if there is a list of devices that have drivers published on Windows Update? – smbear Feb 16 '13 at 14:27
I'm not sure if there is a full list (although there used to be). Look for "WHQL certified devices". – grawity Feb 16 '13 at 14:29
In fact, I think debug/reflash drivers cannot be on Windows Update because they wouldn't be allowed by WHQL. – grawity Feb 16 '13 at 14:35
@smbear: "Maybe you know if there is a list of devices that have drivers published on Windows Update?" - See updated answer above. – Karan Feb 16 '13 at 14:56

If you go to start, "Devices and Printers" there could be a yellow bar at the top that asks you to enable automatic driver downloads.

However, ADB drivers for Android phones are mostly not found when doing automatic driver downloads. I had some printers, keyboards and mice where Windows found drivers by automatic download. For your ADB drivers, take a look at the manufacturers website, XDA-developers or search Google for "devicename ADB driver".

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Installing the driver is not a problem. I only hoped that this can be done automatically by Windows - to save some mouse clicks. :) And it ended with a question here - no clicks were saved. ;) – smbear Feb 16 '13 at 14:25
I understand you. I had several Android devices, no ADB drivers were found automatically for any of those. – chrki Feb 16 '13 at 14:27

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