Drivers are the middleware that allow computer programs to use resources of a specific hardware device.

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Windows 10, 'System' process taking massive amounts of RAM

Since I upgraded to Windows 10, my system has been consuming RAM excessively I've been reading a bit and determined it's likely a driver leaking memory. So I got myself the Windows Driver Kit and ...
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7answers
8k views

Why do printers require drivers?

I've always wondered why I need a 500+ MB printer driver installed on my computer every time I set up a new printer. Why can't computers simply send the file that needs to be printed to a printer and ...
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3answers
3k views

What exactly is a laptop “display audio” driver?

I've downloaded an Intel HD Graphics driver for my Dell laptop and the installer's welcome screen says it will install the following components: Intel Graphics Driver Intel Display Audio Driver ...
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1answer
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What is the difference between the different nVidia Quadro drivers?

I have a nVidia Quadro FX 1700 graphics card and there are different drivers offered at the nVidia driver page: Quadro ODE Graphics Driver Quadro Performance Driver Quadro Partner Certified Driver ...
27
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3answers
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“reload” mac audio drivers without rebooting

I have an external audio interface (M-audio fast track c400). In order to get my macbook to recognize it (display in audio/midi setup), I have to reboot, which is a hassle. I have had other m-audio ...
27
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8answers
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What's the reason behind “Stereo Mix” becoming a missing option?

Several newer computers I've worked on (Dell, mainly) are using IDT or Realtek drivers which lack the Stereo Mix option in audio recording devices. I've tried all kinds of methods including ...
26
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14answers
118k views

Why does Windows 7 ask for additional drivers when installing from a USB 3.0 drive?

I just bought a new config ( ASUS p8z68-v lx, i5-2500k + ram and new graphic card ). Coming back and installing it in my old computer, I just saw that my DVD player was on IDE (yup…). So, I needed to ...
25
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6answers
21k views

Why should I install hardware drivers if my computer is working fine?

I've just installed Windows 7 on my PC. I went online to look for drivers. For my motherboard, Foxconn offers LAN drivers, on-board audio drivers, and chipset drivers. And for my graphics card, ...
25
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3answers
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How to mount read-write an ext4 partition on Windows?

I want to use ext4 on my external HDD, but it must be cross-platform. (At least Linux, Win7 & WinXP). Unfortunately, I haven't found any proper driver allowing Windows to WRITE to ext4. I've ...
23
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3answers
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Why must I install drivers BEFORE plugging in a new peripheral?

I've always found this to be curious about installation instructions for computer peripherals; most commonly, installation of USB hardware in Windows XP. Installation instructions typically insist ...
22
votes
2answers
979 views

Does the BIOS have some sort of generic 'drivers'

How does the BIOS control I/O devices without any form of drivers? For example how is an image displayed whilst the computer is booting if the BIOS doesn't have any drivers for the graphics card. ...
20
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8answers
4k views

Why do my headphones not require drivers?

When I plug a new mouse or printer into my Mac, I need to install a new driver. However, I recently plugged new head phones into my computer, and they just worked. Why don't I need to install a ...
20
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5answers
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Where should I find drivers for my laptop if it didn't come with a driver disk?

I had to reformat my machine because I had a virus. My machine did not come with a driver disk. How can I install drivers after having reinstalled windows?
20
votes
6answers
34k views

Play audio over network with Windows 7?

I have seen software for Linux systems that allows me to send the audio from one system to another over the network, is there such a software (a driver likely) for Windows, specificly XP but Vista and ...
19
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3answers
34k views

Enable/disable Windows 7 device via command line

I have a device that I often enable and disable using the Device Manager. I'd like to write a script to do this programmatically (that is, using the command line). I saw a program called devcon that ...
18
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8answers
201k views

When installing additional printer 32-bit drivers fails on Windows 7 64-bit I get the error “Selected printer driver not found”, what should I do?

I've successfully installed Windows 7 (x64) and drivers for my Canon MP510, and have no problem printing with this setup. There is another PC in the network running XP SP3, and I want to share the ...
18
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7answers
194k views

How can I disable my laptop's built-in keyboard in Windows 7?

I have a HP Compaq Presario C700 laptop with Windows 7 installed on it. My laptop's keyboard is not working properly; some keys never work and some keys will keep on pressing. I've formatted the OS ...
17
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4answers
10k views

Is there any point in installing a monitor driver?

I'm guessing that most of the world's PCs are running with a default "Plug & Play Monitor" driver which seems to work well enough, and having just swapped to a 2005FPW, installed the driver and ...
17
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3answers
30k views

How to diagnose Blue Screens in Windows 7 (64bit)

Using programs like WhoCrashed and BlueScreenView you can see the BSOD and the errors but how do you tell exactly what's causing the BSOD? I'm not sure if it's because of bad hardware, bad driver ...
17
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6answers
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What is a UFR II printer driver and why might I use it in preference to another type?

A new printer recently showed up at work. There are an abundance of possible drivers for it applicable to my system (Windows 7, 64 bit) including PCL5, PCL5e, PCL6 and UFR II. I'm familiar with PCL, ...
17
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1answer
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Windows 8.1 Black screen and no safe mode [closed]

PROBLEM Cannot run Windows 8.1 due to black screen. No mouse pointer. Sometimes white cursor in top left. Cannot enter safe mode: get black screen but with a row of blue pixels at the bottom or a row ...
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3answers
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How to restart a video card driver in Windows 7?

Some times my video card driver (Intel GMA X4500HD) crashes and gets restarted automatically. But more often (almost every time I watch a flash-powered online video for a period of time) it just gets ...
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2answers
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How to completely remove printer from Windows 7

I'm having some issues with my Canon Pixma IP1900 printer - it doesn't respond to any OS requests. I am using Windows 7 x64 with additional Canon drivers and the printer used to work ok, but recently ...
16
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3answers
27k views

Can I safely delete the files created by NVIDIA display drivers?

Every time I install a NVIDIA driver the files get unzipped into C:\NVIDIA\DisplayDriver. I assume the setup copies the files to another location and this unzipped data is only useful for the ...
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3answers
98k views

How to add drivers to Windows 7 installation DVD?

How I can bundle newer or missing drivers to Windows 7 DVD?
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4answers
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Synaptics - Windows 8.1, updating Synaptics failed

On Windows 8.1, I tried to install the latest Synaptics Touchpad Driver v17.0.19 and it failed for some unknown reasons. Turns out it's problem with Synaptics, not Windows. Synaptics did not "Sign" ...
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6answers
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Virtual audio driver for Windows? [closed]

Is there any (possibly free or open-source) virtual WDM audio driver for Windows, with additional processing plugins, which would add one more layer between windows applications and actual sound card'...
14
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5answers
11k views

How can I emulate a 'fake' printer (driver) in Windows?

For testing, my application needs to send a document to the printer. I don't really want to print this out, so I am looking for a 'fake' printer driver which could essentially print to nothing. I know ...
14
votes
5answers
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Remove NVIDIA Update and UpdatusUser

Does anyone know how to remove the UpdatusUser user created by installing the NVIDIA driver? Or better yet, how to install the drivers in such a way that UpdatusUser won't even be created? I have ...
14
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5answers
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Issue installing BootCamp drivers for Windows 10

I installed Windows 10 on my 15" Retina Macbook Pro. Once installed, I attempted to install the BootCamp drivers but it keeps getting hung up on the Realtek audio driver. I even left it overnight ...
14
votes
2answers
12k views

How to get a list of active drivers that are statically built into the linux kernel?

While I can use lsmod in order to show currently active kernel modules, how can I see which drivers are statically built into the kernel AND currently active?
13
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2answers
9k views

How to find vendor and model of unknown drivers

I reinstalled windows on a new machine and the drivers are not present for the product network card. When in device manager all I get is the question mark and I am unable to figure out the actual ...
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5answers
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Automatic driver search & update on Windows? [closed]

I have a Dell laptop issued by my employer, and I always find it a real pain to search for, download and maintain their drivers. It baffles me that there does not seem to be a nice way (product, ...
12
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8answers
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How to enable AHCI in Windows XP without reinstalling

This question is part of a larger list of things I'll need to do before installing a new SSD drive, but I think it deserves its own question. Current setup: A dual-boot machine with Windows XP ...
12
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3answers
717 views

What is different about GPU drivers from other device drivers, that allows for performance optimizations?

It seems like the big two GPU makers are constantly releasing updated drivers that have a small performance boosts here and there. When they're for the same game, I bet it adds up over time. With ...
12
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3answers
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2 identical PCs - can I swap a single hard drive between and expect Windows 7/XP to work?

I currently work in 2 different locations, traveling between the 2 every few weeks or so. I currently have screens, kb, mouse etc... in both locations, so I just pick up my tower case when I want to ...
12
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3answers
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50 USB webcams in a single computer. Is that really possible?

Theoretically an USB HD webcam working at 15 FPS consume a bandwidth nearing 18MB/s - 1280 (width) x 960(height) x 3(RGB channels) x 15(FPS) - without compression. An USB 2.0 controller have a ...
11
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3answers
484 views

Why does simple plug and play hardware sometimes include drivers?

I have about 7 devices (speakers, mouse, etc.) that are all USB. They all came with CD's containing drivers for it. My question is, why do they? All 7 of these devices have run just fine on every ...
11
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4answers
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Difference and relation between firmware and device driver

How are firmware and device driver different and related? I think both control devices? Is firmware always self-booting, while driver must be run/booted by OS?
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Screen is black at login screen if display driver is enabled

I have a Lenovo x200 and recently its screen didn't work, so I took it to a repair lab. The guy told me they replaced the screen inverter. I powered up the laptop and the ThinkPad logo was shown, so I ...
11
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10answers
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Multiple monitors broken with Windows 10 upgrade

I have a HP ENVY 17-3200 (switchable graphics: Intel HD 4000 + AMD Radeon HD 7800M) with a triple monitor setup: Laptop's builtin LVDS 1080p display DisplayPort WQXGA display DisplayPort 1080p ...
11
votes
1answer
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Difference between a device driver and module?

Question: What is the difference between a Device Driver and a Module (or Kernel module) in the context of both Linux and Windows specifically? I understand the purpose of a device driver, can you ...
11
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2answers
1k views

Windows cannot enter very low-res video mode with modern graphics cards/drivers

NEW! I was trying to post here yesterday, but it kept giving me an error. I have discovered that it actually is not using DirectX at all, but GDI or whatever is the non-DX graphics in Windows (not ...
11
votes
1answer
4k views

Dell Latitude E6420: Dell Wireless 375 bluetooth constantly choppy

My configuration: Hardware Dell Latitude E6420 laptop Core i5 2520M with on-chip integrated graphics 8 GB DDR3 1 TB Samsung 850 Pro SSD Dell Wireless 375 Bluetooth Module (USB; VendorID 413C; ...
10
votes
3answers
30k views

Prevent Windows 10 from installing/updating a specific driver?

It seems that the recent Synaptics driver update for Synaptics SMBus TouchPad on Windows 10 (build 100049) somehow doesn't see my middle-button. Uninstalling, and installing an older driver for ...
10
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1answer
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How do I delete folders from the Windows 7 DriverStore?

I am having a problem getting a specific device to work, and I am trying to start from square one by making sure there are absolutely no leftover files from driver installs on my system. Specifically ...
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3answers
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Are drivers part of the operating systems?

I have difficulty in understanding what's included in an OS and what's not. Is a device driver such as a printer driver or graphic driver part of an OS? Thinking about the definition of an OS I ...
10
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2answers
459 views

should you install specific drivers from your motherboard / video card manufacturer, or let Windows do the job? [duplicate]

I have a computer which is working fine after a windows re-install. However, I did not install any drivers at all, they seem to have been installed via Windows Update. Back then, I remember I had to ...
10
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3answers
14k views

Finding hardware information on linux without lspci

I have an ARM device running ArchLinux. The device doesn't appear to have any PCI bus, even though it has USB. [root@alarm ~]# lsusb Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0002 Linux Foundation 2.0 root hub ...
10
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8answers
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How do I solve an unidentified network issue? It can't connect to the Internet

I basically have a problem with Windows 7 connecting to my home network. It keeps identifying my home network as unidentified, and it continually does "identifying" until it simply say cannot connect ...