HOW TO: Install Device Drivers in Microsoft Windows 2000

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Article ID: 320929 - View products that this article applies to.
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SUMMARY

This step-by-step article describes how to obtain and install drivers for hardware devices on a Microsoft Windows 2000-based computer.

Step 1: Determine the Hardware Manufacturer

If you do not know the manufacturer of the device for which you want to install the driver, follow these steps to determine the manufacturer:
  1. On the desktop, right-click My Computer, and then click Manage.
  2. Under System Tools, click Device Manager.

    The devices that are installed on the computer are listed in the right pane.
  3. In the right pane, expand the category of the device that you want to configure. For example, expand Display adapters.

    NOTE: The device may be listed under Other devices.
  4. Right-click the device for which you want to install the driver, and then click Properties.

    NOTE: The device may appear as Unknown device or as a generic device.
  5. Click the General tab. Make a note of the manufacturer and model of the device.
  6. Click Cancel, and then quit Computer Management.

    NOTE: If the device is not displayed in Device Manager, or the device is listed as an "Unknown device," contact the computer or device manufacturer to obtain more information about the device. For information about how to contact hardware manufacturers, click the appropriate article number in the following list to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    65416 Hardware and software vendor contact information, A-K

    60781 Hardware and software vendor contact information, L-P

    60782 Hardware and software vendor contact information, Q-Z

Step 2: Obtain the Driver

To obtain the latest driver, use the following list of possible sources for the driver, in the order in which they are presented.

Original Computer Manufacturer

If the device was installed by your computer manufacturer, contact the manufacturer of your computer to find out how to obtain, download, and install the latest drivers for the device.

For information about how to contact your computer manufacturer, click the appropriate article number in the following list to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
65416 Hardware and software vendor contact information, A-K

60781 Hardware and software vendor contact information, L-P

60782 Hardware and software vendor contact information, Q-Z

Device Manufacturer

Contact the manufacturer of the device to inquire about how to obtain, download, and install the latest drivers for the device.

For information about how to contact hardware manufacturers, click the appropriate article number in the following list to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
65416 Hardware and software vendor contact information, A-K

60781 Hardware and software vendor contact information, L-P

60782 Hardware and software vendor contact information, Q-Z

Chipset Manufacturer

Contact the chipset manufacturer of the device to find out how to obtain, download, and install the latest drivers for the device. It is best to first contact the manufacturer of the device for the drivers before you contact the chipset manufacturer.

For example, if your display adapter uses a NVIDIA chipset, first contact the manufacturer of the display adapter. If you cannot contact the display adapter manufacturer or if the manufacturer does not have a driver, contact NVIDIA.

Some examples of chipset manufacturers (and their Web sites) include: For information about how to contact hardware manufacturers, click the appropriate article number in the following list to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
65416 Hardware and software vendor contact information, A-K

60781 Hardware and software vendor contact information, L-P

60782 Hardware and software vendor contact information, Q-Z

Installation CD or Floppy Disks

If you have the original driver CD or floppy disks that were included with the computer or device, and if no other source for the drivers is available, use the original driver that is included with the computer or device.

NOTE: Whenever possible, try to first contact the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM), device manufacturer, or chipset manufacturer to obtain the latest version of the driver.

Step 3: Install the Driver

The driver files that you download from the OEM, device manufacturer, or chipset manufacturer differ depending on how the driver is packaged by the manufacturer.

If the file is an executable program, run the program to extract the files. If the file is in .zip format, you can use a third-party utility such as WinZip to extract the files. For more information about how to extract the driver files, see the instructions that are provided by the manufacturer of the driver.

The driver may use a setup program. The driver package may contain raw driver files, or it may contain only raw driver files. Some examples include .inf files, and .sys files. To install the driver, use one of the following methods as appropriate to your situation.

Driver with a Setup or Installation Program

If the driver uses a setup or installation program, run the program to install the driver. For more information about how to do this, see the documentation or contact the driver manufacturer.

Device Is Displayed in Device Manager

  1. On the desktop, right-click My Computer, and then click Manage.
  2. Under System Tools, click Device Manager.

    The devices that are installed on the computer are listed in the right pane.
  3. Expand the category of the device that you want to configure. For example, expand Modems.

    NOTE: The device may be listed under Other devices.
  4. Right-click the device for which you want to install the driver, and then click Properties.

    NOTE: The device may be displayed as Unknown device, or as a generic device.
  5. Click the Driver tab, and then click Update Driver.

    The Upgrade Device Driver wizard starts.
  6. Click Next.
  7. Do one of the following:
    • Click Search for a suitable driver for my device (recommended), and then click Next.

      -or-
    • Click Display a list of the known devices for this device so that I can choose a specific driver, and then click Next. Click Have Disk, click Browse, locate the .inf files that you downloaded in Step 2: Obtain the Driver, click an .inf file, and then click Open.
  8. Follow the wizard instructions to install the driver.
  9. Restart the computer.


Device Is Not Displayed in Device Manager

Use the Add New Hardware wizard in Control Panel to install drivers for non-Plug and Play devices. You may have to use this method to install certain modems, serial ports, or printer ports.
  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Double-click Add/Remove Hardware.
  3. Click Next.
  4. Click Add/Troubleshoot a device, and then click Next.
  5. Do one of the following:
    • Click Yes, search for new hardware, and then click Next.

      -or-
    • Click No, I want to select the hardware from a list, and then click Next.
  6. Follow the wizard instructions to install the driver.
  7. Restart the computer.

REFERENCES

For additional information about how to troubleshoot unknown devices in Device Manager, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
244601 How to troubleshoot unknown devices that are listed in Device Manager in Windows 2000
125174 Explanation of error codes fenerated by Device Manager
The third-party products that are discussed in this article are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding the performance or reliability of these products.

Microsoft provides third-party contact information to help you find technical support. This contact information may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this third-party contact information.

Properties

Article ID: 320929 - Last Review: May 7, 2007 - Revision: 3.4
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Advanced Server
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Edition
Keywords: 
kbhowtomaster KB320929

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