This the first problem most new technicians run into when first getting involved in working with installations of Windows OS.
Retail Windows installation discs (not OEM discs) don't include every driver ever made, which includes some drivers for the hardware on your particular system. OEM discs (like one from HP or Dell) includes all the drivers for your particular system, and many times includes the Windows product key, so activation and installation is very simple. If you have an OEM disk specific to your model, use it.
You can do one of two things:
- Download all the missing drivers from another computer with an internet connection, and transfer them over with a USB drive (or a CD).
- Download only the network adapter drivers to a USB drive (or CD) and once you have an internet connection on the PC you're working on, download the remaining missing drivers.
Most experienced technicians download the ethernet drivers before doing the reinstall, that way getting the rest of the drivers is just a matter of a Google search.
If you're not sure of which drivers to download:
Go to the manufacturer's website. Search by your model number, Windows version, and it will list all the current drivers for your hardware.
If the manufacturer's website doesn't work there are other methods for finding drivers:
Sometimes Windows can automatically search for drivers and install them on its own. In my experience, this is rare.
For graphics cards, if you know the model of the card (sometimes it is written on a label physically on the card), you can go to the manufacturer's website and download the latest driver.
For mostly every other device, I use pcidatabase.com to search by the vendor and device ID. To find the vendor and device ID:
Open Device Manager, right click the device with the missing driver (usually marked in yellow), then click Properties. Click the Details tab, then click the dropdown and select the Hardware ID property. The value will have the terms VID followed by four characters (this is the vendor ID), and PID followed by four characters (this is the product or device ID). You can search on pcidatabase.com for the device name, and it usually includes a download link to drivers.