Why do I need to check and update my drivers?

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anita65

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What is the advantage of checking and updating my Drivers? Can I do this free of charge?
 

Tanis

Shane
Joined
May 29, 2006
Messages
4,148
It is generally considered good practice to keep drivers etc. up to date.

During use, bugs and problems can be found in sets of drivers. As a manufacturer identifies and fixes these bugs an updated version of the drivers is normally released to resolve the problem.

I have never come across a company that charges for driver updates, generally speaking they are obliged to fix 'bugs' in their own software code. If, however, they are releasing a big change / update to a program (MS Office, Windows etc) then that is more likely to have a fee attached as they need to cover their development costs.

Windows itself will keep its own sotware up to date as part of the Automatic Updates process. For specific hardware drivers (graphics cards, network cards, sound cards, etc) then it is generally better to check the manufactures website for driver updates as Windows often lags a fair bit behind in that area.

The advantages are a little subjective depending on who you talk to :) Some people will say that if you aren't haveing any problems with your system then why bother, back to the old analogy of 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'. However, if you think you have a problem with your system one of the first things to check is for driver updates as your problem may be a know issue and an update exists that will fix it.

Hopefully that makes some degree of sense and I haven't waffled too much :)
 

anita65

Thread Starter
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
4
It is generally considered good practice to keep drivers etc. up to date.

During use, bugs and problems can be found in sets of drivers. As a manufacturer identifies and fixes these bugs an updated version of the drivers is normally released to resolve the problem.

I have never come across a company that charges for driver updates, generally speaking they are obliged to fix 'bugs' in their own software code. If, however, they are releasing a big change / update to a program (MS Office, Windows etc) then that is more likely to have a fee attached as they need to cover their development costs.

Windows itself will keep its own sotware up to date as part of the Automatic Updates process. For specific hardware drivers (graphics cards, network cards, sound cards, etc) then it is generally better to check the manufactures website for driver updates as Windows often lags a fair bit behind in that area.

The advantages are a little subjective depending on who you talk to :) Some people will say that if you aren't haveing any problems with your system then why bother, back to the old analogy of 'if it ain't broke, don't fix it'. However, if you think you have a problem with your system one of the first things to check is for driver updates as your problem may be a know issue and an update exists that will fix it.

Hopefully that makes some degree of sense and I haven't waffled too much :)
No that very clear thankyou. Your reply was very helpful.
 

flavallee

Frank
Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 12, 2002
Messages
83,255
You list yourself as a "Beginner", so I don't know how computer-knowledgeable you really are.

If all the devices in your computer are working properly, there's no compelling reason to update a driver.

If you attempt to update a wrong or incomplete driver, you can wind up with a non-working device and a blue screen error.

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anita65

Thread Starter
Joined
Nov 4, 2011
Messages
4
O thanks for that. I have just restored the factory settings and I keep coming accross prompts to check device drivers. The computer is working OK just now so I will leave well alone. Although I cannot re install my wireless network adapter. The software will load but the computer does not recognise the actual adapter. I have tested it on another machine and it is definitely working.I have been told to check that my plug and play is enabled. I am in work at the moment so that will be my next task when I get home. Have you any ideas on that problem please?

Thanks again
 

flavallee

Frank
Trusted Advisor
Joined
May 12, 2002
Messages
83,255
Whether you're referring to an external USB wireless adapter or one that comes built into the computer, its driver needs to be installed before it'll work.

You say you've done a factory restore and that the adapter works on a different computer, so I have to assume it's an external USB model.

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