We all know that no software can run without a proper collection of essential hardware. In fact, the software will not even get loaded if there is a major problem in any part of the related hardware. In most cases, this hardware problem is attributed to the respective driver program that might not be the required one.
Generally, each hardware piece or device such as keyboard, mouse, and port has its own driver without which you cannot perform any task on your PC. This means that the device drivers have a critical role to play while executing any computer task. As a result, it is essential for any computer owner to update the device drivers on a regular basis to ensure that the latest or required drivers are installed.
But before we move on to how to update device drives in Windows Vista, let us first know what actually their role is so that all those who are unaware of the hardware terminologies can recognize the importance of updating them.
What Exactly is a Device Driver?
In simple terms, you can consider a device driver as an intermediary between the installed programs and hardware devices. Its role is to facilitate communication by transforming the user-level commands from a program into the machine-level ones so that the hardware can effectively work with the software to generate and display the desired output.
For instance, a word-processing program interacts with the keyboard and mouse via their installed drivers to generate the desired text or movement. Generally, a driver is specific to the device, motherboard type, and operating system. This means that the drivers tend to differ on different machines according to these three criteria.
Why Update a Device Driver
An update aims at fixing any bugs in your hardware device, which results in boosting the overall performance of your computer. So, it is vital for you to update the drivers. Now, let’s explore the most famous ways of updating device drivers in Windows Vista.
What are the Ways to Update Device Drivers in Windows Vista
In Windows Vista, there are actually two main ways to update device drivers namely, via Windows Update that is a built-in utility for downloading the updates automatically or manually from the manufacturer’s site and via the Device Manager.
To Update Drivers Manually in Vista Via Windows Update
1. Select Start --> All Programs --> Windows Update for opening Windows Update. You might have to face the UAC control here.
2. Click the Check for updates option in the left pane.
3. Click the View available updates option to know whether any updated drivers are present. Now, Windows Update tries to show a list of available updated drivers for the devices installed on your computer.
4. In case you see any updates, select the desired driver for installation and click Install. Now, a UAC control might appear again for admin password.
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To Update Drivers Automatically in Vista via the Recommended Updates of Windows Update
1. Open Windows Update.
2. Click the Change settings option in the left pane.
3. Click the Install updates automatically (recommended) option.
4. In the Recommended updates section, tick the check box for including the recommended updates. You might be now prompted for the admin password.
To Update Drivers Manually Via Device Manager in Vista
1. Open the Command Prompt.
2. Type devmgmt.msc and press Enter. This will open the Device Manager. You might see your UAC control for confirmation or admin password.
3. Spot the driver that needs to be updated by expanding the respective device’s node.
4. Double-click the driver for opening its properties dialog box.
5. Select the Driver tab.
6. Click the Update Driver button and proceed according to the instructions.