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How to Update Device Drivers in Windows 10

It is important to know how to update device drivers in Windows 10. Some device drivers are automatically updated in Windows 10, but sometimes it’s necessary for you to update device drivers manually in Windows 10. In this guide, you will learn 2 different methods on how to update device drivers on Windows 10. 

 how to update device drivers on windows 10

Let’s get started. 

What is a Device Driver?

A device driver is an essential piece of code that allows Windows 10 to detect and interact with a specific piece of hardware (graphics card, hard drive, or network adapter), as well as peripherals. 

Are device drivers important? Yes. It’s critical to always ensure that your device drivers are up to date. An outdated device driver can cause crashes or hardware failures. Besides, it can lead to work loss. If you’re experiencing some problems with your PC, a simple driver update can save you from visiting your technician.

Windows 10 usually detects and installs drivers automatically using the array of product drivers built into the system. However, at times, you may have to update a device manually for different reasons. For instance;

  • When a piece of hardware isn't recognized automatically or stops functioning after an upgrade,
  • When Windows Update installs a generic package, or
  • If you need to access a new feature or do a bug fix. 

These are just some reasons that may force you to find another way to install or update your driver. Fortunately, Windows 10 has different ways to help install and update device drivers.

How to Install or Update Device Drivers in Windows 10

Typically, Windows 10 usually installs device drivers as needed when there is an update. This isn’t always the case, however, and sometimes the device drivers that get installed can malfunction. Windows 10 helps you install or update device drivers through Windows Update, Device Manager, and Auto-Update Assistants from device manufacturers. In most cases, these methods will keep your device drivers installed and updated properly.

How to Update Drivers Using Windows Update

Although it takes some manufacturers a while to make their latest driver updates available in Windows Update, this is the recommended way to download and install device drivers in Windows because these packages have been tested, verified, and signed by Microsoft. This means you can mostly be sure they will work. Notably, though, this isn’t always the case as some updates can make your PC to malfunction due to compatibility issues. 

Using windows update is a relatively easy and fast way to check for driver updates and to install them. To quickly update device drivers using Windows Update, do this:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Update & Security.Update and security
  3. Click on Windows Update.
  4. Click the Check for updates button.Windows update

 

If a driver is missing after an upgrade or clean installation, or if a new driver has been introduced to improve an older version, Windows 10 will download and install automatically. If this works, you’re golden. It worked like it’s supposed to work.

How to Update Drivers Using Device Manager

You can also update drivers for a printer, wireless adapter, monitor, and other components using Device Manager. To update a device driver with Device Manager in Windows 10 follows the steps below:

  1. Open Start.
  2. Search for Device Manager from the search bar.
  3. Double-click the category with the device you want to update.
  4. Right-click the device, and select the Update Driver option.
  5. Click the Search automatically for updated driver software option.

If there is a newer update available, Device Manager will download and install the package automatically in the same way as the Windows Update.

Installing a Driver from the Manufacturer

Sometimes Windows 10 doesn’t have an updated driver for you. In this case, you need to install it directly from the manufacturer. This means you download the driver from the manufacturer’s website and install it yourself. The updated driver might be too new to be in Windows so you need to get it at the source. Here’s how to update via manufacturer:

Download the install package, zip file, or .exe file from the manufacturer of the device driver you want to install, then do this:

  1. Open Start.
  2. Search for Device Manager.
  3. Double-click the category with the device you want to update.
  4. Right-click the device, and select the Update Driver option.
  5. Click the Browse my computer for driver software option.
  6. Select the main folder with the content you have extracted earlier.
  7. Click the OK button.
  8. Check the Include subfolders option to allow the wizard to find the correct "inf" file with the instructions to update the driver.
  9. Click the Next.

This should do the trick. You could manually run the install package yourself in the same way you would install any piece of software, but this method is the preferred method.

How to Update Graphics Drivers

Although you don’t really want to bother updating drivers unless you experience issues that require you to do so, graphics card manufacturers often roll out updates to improve the experience and support of displays and to fix problems with PC games. You may want to stay on top of graphic card driver updates for this reason. 

If you need the most recent update for your graphics card, you can use the graphics control panel available from Nvidia, AMD, and Intel to download and install the most up-to-date driver. You can often download and install these drivers from the official websites of your graphics card manufacturer that will give you advanced control over your graphics card and drivers. Typically installation will be done through a wizard.

Remember, If you use an integrated graphics card from Intel, computer manufacturers can modify drivers to limit or expand their functionalities. If you have a desktop, laptop, or tablet from a company like Dell, HP, Asus, etc., get the latest update from their support website instead of from the Intel website. If you don’t, your device might miss features and configurations or experience problems.

How to Check If a Driver Has Been Updated

Once you’ve updated your driver, you need to be sure if the driver has been updated. Here’s how to see if your device driver is up to date in Windows 10:

  1. Open Start.
  2. Search for Device Manager.
  3. Double-click the category with the device you want to update.
  4. Right-click the device, and select the Properties option.
  5. Click the Driver tab.
  6. See the "Driver Date" and "Driver Version" information.

This will give you the information about the currently installed driver. Compare it with the information from the manufacturer to see if you have the latest version of the driver.

If you have any more questions, issues, or troubleshooting to do, feel free to return to us! Our dedicated Windows 10 section is filled to the brim with useful articles. You can learn more about Broadcom in Windows 10 here.

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