Device drivers in Windows Vista


This article describes device drivers and provides information about how to obtain the correct drivers for your hardware.

More Information

A driver is software that Windows uses to communicate with hardware devices. Without drivers, hardware that is connected to the computer does not work correctly. For example, if a video card or a printer does not have the correct driver installed, that device may not work correctly.

How to obtain and install device drivers

Usually, drivers are included with Windows, or you can install them from the Microsoft Update Web site. If Windows does not have the correct driver for your device, you can install the driver from the disc that was included with the device. If you do not have a driver disc, check the manufacturer's Web site.

Windows automatically searches for and installs device drivers after the new hardware is detected or when you use the Add New Hardware Wizard in Control Panel. If Windows detects an updated driver for a device, the Update Hardware Wizard starts and then prompts you to install the updated driver. If you have previously been connected to the Internet, Windows may prompt you to check for the latest drivers on the Microsoft Update Web site.

Contact the manufacturer

Contact the manufacturer of the device for more information about drivers: