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Updating your PC drivers not only improves performance, but also helps you avoid stability problems and make your PC run a little easier. For these reasons, experts advise PC users to update their device drivers as soon as a new version is available.
When it comes to updating device drivers, Windows users have a number of options to choose from. You can use software to automatically search and update obsolete drivers, manually download and install the latest version, or use the Windows native Update Driver feature, which sometimes helps you update the device drivers available through Windows Update.
Before visiting the manufacturer’s website, you should know the version number of the currently installed driver to avoid downloading the same version again. Since not all installed drivers appear in the programs and features, checking the version of an installed driver is not an easy task for beginners.
Updating your drivers is essential to maintain performance, security and access to new features. If you block automatic updates, remember to manually check critical driver updates from time to time.
Follow these steps to check the current version of your driver:
You can find the version number of a driver installed in the Device Manager, as well as other information published on the driver.
- Click Start, right-click My Computer (or Computer), and then click Manage.
- In the Computer Management window, on the left, click Device Manager.
- Click on the + sign in front of the device category you want to check.
- Double-click on the device for which you want to know the driver version.
- Select the Driver tab. The version of the currently installed driver is displayed on this page.
List of all installed Windows drivers
Fortunately, there is an integrated utility that displays a list of all installed drivers, and it couldn’t be easier. All you have to do is open a command prompt and type the following:
You will get a list of drivers and the corresponding date. If you need more information, such as the current driver file, you can use the /V command, which you should associate with | more to prevent it from passing.
There are a number of other options that print the results in a CSV file format or tell you which drivers are signed. You can use / ? as a command to see how they work.
Examining the driver’s date is a good first indication of whether or not you have a current driver. If you see that the pilot is more than 1-2 years old, it is a good idea to check if there is a later version of the pilot. Once you have visited the hardware manufacturer’s driver page, you can determine if you have the most recent driver by comparing the version available on the website with the version on your computer.
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