One of the most attractive things about a desktop PC is the ability to add or remove hardware according to your preference. This means you can swap out any old or malfunctioning hardware with new parts. When you attach a new piece of hardware to your device, that device needs to be recognized by your operating system for proper functioning.
What Are Device Drivers?
For recognizing any hardware that is connected to your computer, your operating system needs a specific set of instructions. Drivers refer to these lines of code that instruct your operating system to communicate with your connected hardware.
With appropriate drivers installed, the drivers operate your hardware, making them function exactly how they are supposed to. Drivers also control how certain hardware behaves, therefore controlling the hardware itself.
Without appropriate drivers, your computer will not be able to send the intended instructions to your hardware, and you will see your hardware malfunctioning. Hence, missing or corrupt drivers will cause your hardware device to misbehave, giving you the impression that there might be something wrong with your device.
How To Handle Corrupt Or Missing Drivers?
Knowing the implications of missing drivers, updating your device drivers to the latest version is one of the most basic troubleshooting steps in solving many errors. In Windows, there is a built-in device manager that houses all the actions you can perform on your hardware drivers.
The Update driver action is a complete solution to many errors including missing, corrupt, or outdated device drivers. The action will scan the driver version that is currently installed on your computer, and then install the latest version on your computer.
There are many sections in the Device Manager console corresponding to the different hardware installed on your computer. Simply follow these steps for updating your device drivers:
- Open a Run You can use the keyboard shortcut Win + R.
- In the editor, type devmgmt.msc and press Enter in order to launch the Device Manager console.
- Here, you will find all your installed hardware components, along with the device drivers for the same.
- In the list of available hardware, locate the hardware that is misbehaving.
- Expand the device section, by clicking on the small arrow next to the device name.
- Right-click on your device, and select Update driver from the revealed context menu.
There are many different sections, each corresponding to a different device and driver. To solve different issues, you will need to expand different sections of the Device Manager.
- For solving errors regarding graphics devices, you need to expand the Display Adapter section, where you will find the integrated and discrete graphics hardware.
- For solving errors regarding your speakers and microphone, you will need to expand the Audio Inputs and Outputs
- To solve errors regarding your installed peripherals like your mouse and keyboard, you will find the appropriate sections titled similarly.
How To Install Generic Drivers For Hardware?
In Windows 10, the Windows Update handles the driver updates. However, there are times when the Windows Update fails to find any drivers online, or it is the latest version of the driver that is incompatible with your hardware. In such situations, you can instruct Windows to install the generic drivers for your device.
To install generic drivers for your device, you can follow these steps:
- Open the Device Manager console and expand the appropriate section using the steps shown above.
- Right-click on your malfunctioning device, and select Uninstall device from the context menu.
This will remove the drivers from your computer.
- If possible, unplug the hardware and insert it into your computer again. Or else, restart your computer.
- Upon restart, Windows should automatically install the generic drivers that came bundled with your device, or from the Microsoft servers. However, if there are no changes made, follow the next steps to induce this manually.
- Now, open Device Manager
- Click on Action in the top ribbon menu.
- From the context menu that appears, click on Scan for Hardware changes.
- The Device Manager console will look for any missing hardware drivers, and the generic version will be installed.
Device drivers are generally coded by the manufacturers, but sometimes Microsoft also codes for some drivers. These drivers help your device in performing optimally and are this very important for your computer. Comment below if you found this article helpful, and share this with others who might need some insight on how to update device drivers.