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What Hardware Device Drivers Should Be Updated?

Below is a listing of general reasons why computer hardware devices should have drivers updated or why updated versions of drivers may need to be installed.

  1. Enable the device to function with a computer.
  2. Compatibility with a new or different Operating System.
  3. To correct issues that may exist with older versions of drivers.
  4. Updated reliability for the hardware device.
  5. Work around hardware issues that may exist with the hardware device.
  6. Improve the overall stability of a computer.

Below is a listing of our recommended hardware devices that you should make sure are updated. Updating your computer's drivers and other updates can resolve problems you may be having with your computer and help improve the performance and overall stability of your computer and/or hardware devices.

bullet BIOS updates
bullet CD or DVD drive drivers and firmware
bullet Controllers
bullet Display drivers
bullet Keyboard drivers
bullet Mouse drivers
bullet Modem drivers
bullet Motherboard drivers and updates
bullet Network card drivers
bullet Printer drivers
bullet Removable media drivers
bullet Scanner drivers
bullet Sound card drivers
bullet Video drivers

BIOS updates

Computer BIOS updates should only be run when you are having compatibility issues with your hardware or you feel that your computer hardware is not performing as it should. Visiting your computer manufacturer or motherboard manufacturer page will enable you to quickly see if any BIOS updates are available for your motherboard and what the updates will fix.

CD or DVD drive drivers and firmware

Updating the drivers for your CD-ROM, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD, or other CD device may help with the overall performance and compatibility of the drive. We recommend you visit our CD driver page for a listing of manufacturers and their driver update pages to obtain the latest drivers.

Some manufacturers may also have firmware updates available for their CD drives. Firmware updates will help resolve any hardware related issues you may be experiencing with the CD drive such as being unable to read some CD Discs or may update the region code on your DVD drive. Unlike a driver update, these updates should only be performed for users who are experiencing hardware related issues with their drives. Most firmware updates are accessible through the manufacturer's CD driver page, see our CD driver page for a listing of these links.

Controllers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for your computer controllers can help with the reliability of the computer as well as reliability and performance of the drives connected to the controller. If you are using a controller separate from your computer motherboard, see our controller driver page for a listing of controller manufacturers and drivers. If you are not using a separate controller card and are using the controller on your computer motherboard, you can obtain the latest controller drivers from your motherboard and/or computer manufacturer. See our motherboard driver page for a listing of motherboard manufacturers and links to their drivers.

Display drivers

Unlike other hardware devices, display devices such as a computer monitor, or flat panel displays are often automatically detected and setup by the Operating System.

If you are looking for a video driver, see our below video drivers section.

Keyboard drivers

Unless your computer keyboard contains special function buttons such as an e-mail button, Internet button, etc. your keyboard should not require any drivers and should be setup by the Operating System.

Note: Users using a USB or Firewire keyboard may need drivers for their Operating System for the keyboard to work and/or may need to verify that USB and/or Firewire is properly working in their Operating System.

Mouse drivers

Unless you are utilizing a unique mouse that contains additional buttons or features not found with a standard one or two button mouse, you should not require any drivers and the mouse should be automatically setup by the Operating System.

Modem drivers

Updating the computer modem drivers can help improve the reliability of the modem and in some rare cases may even improve the speed of the modem. We recommend you visit our modem driver page for a listing of manufacturers and their driver update pages to obtain the latest drivers.

Some modem manufacturers may also have firmware updates that upgrade the modem to support new standards such as V.90 or correct hardware issues with the modem. Firmware updates should only be run if your computer or modem manufacturer recommend you update the modem or if you believe a firmware update will correct your issue. When updating your modem's firmware, verify you are using a firmware update designed for your modem. Updating the firmware with an incorrect version may cause the modem to no longer work. Firmware updates are usually also available through the modem driver page.

Motherboard drivers, firmware, and updates

Updating the computer motherboard and/or motherboard chipset drivers can help with the compatibility, reliability, and/or performance of the motherboard and the hardware installed in the computer. See our motherboard drivers page for a listing of links to motherboard chipset drivers as well as links to many of the motherboard manufacturers drivers pages.

Network card drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a computer network card may help with the reliability of the network card in the computer. A listing of computer network card drivers can be found on our network drivers page.

Some network card manufacturers may also have firmware updates. Firmware updates may resolve issues relating to the compatibility of the network card or resolve other hardware issues. Firmware updates should only be run if your network card or computer manufacturer recommends an update. These updates can also be found through the manufacturer's network driver page.

Printer drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a computer printer may help with the reliability and compatibility of the printer. A listing of computer printer drivers can be found on our printer drivers page.

Removable media drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a removable media device such as a tape drive may help with the reliability of the removable media device. A listing of computer removable media drivers can be found on our removable media / tape drive drivers page.

Scanner drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a scanner may help with the reliability and compatibility of the scanner. A listing of computer scanner drivers can be found on our scanner drivers page.

Sound card drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a sound card will help with the compatibility, reliability, and/or the performance of the sound card. A listing of computer sound card drivers can be found on our sound card drivers page.

Video drivers

Updating or installing the latest drivers for a video card will help with the compatibility, reliability, and/or the performance of the video card. A listing of computer video card drivers can be found on our video card drivers page.

Some video card manufacturers may also have firmware updates. Firmware updates may resolve issues relating to the compatibility of the video card or resolve other hardware issues. Firmware updates should only be run if your video card or computer manufacturer recommends an update. These updates can also be found through the manufacturer's network driver page.

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