What are the device drivers?
A driver is software that allows your computer to communicate with hardware or devices. A device driver operates or controls a particular type of device that is attached to a computer. Without drivers, the hardware you connect to your computer—for example, a video card or a printer—won't work properly.
When you buy a branded pc or laptop, many device drivers are built into the product. However, if you later buy a new type of device, then you have to install the new device driver for this device.
A device driver typically communicates with the device through the computer bus or communications subsystem to which the hardware connected. It provides commands to device from application software or operating systems or receives data from the device.
Why Device Driver Required?
Computers and their operating systems may not be able to know how to control every device. That’s why every product comes out with new device drivers. The operating system “calls” the driver, and the driver “drives” the device.
When a new hardware device is added to the computer, such as a CD-ROM drive, a printer, or a sound card, its driver must be installed in order to run it. If the peripheral device is changed, the driver must also be changed. Depending on your operating system drivers are 8-bit, 16-bit, 32-bit, and more recently, 64-bit. A new version of the driver is then written and released by the manufacturer of the device
Explanation of Device Driver:
A device driver is the basically a translator. Its input consists of high-level commands, and its output consists of low-level, hardware-specific instructions, which are utilized by the hardware controller, which interfaces the I/O device to the rest of the operating system.
In Windows you can use Device Manager to see the devices installed on your PC, update driver software for your devices, check to see if hardware is working properly, and change hardware settings.
- To open Device Manager in Windows 7 and 8, type “Device Manager” in the search box and then tap or click Device Manager.
- In the Run dialog box, type devmgmt.msc and click OK.
Now Device Manger window will open. Here in the list of device types, click the small arrow on the left side of device to see the details.
To Check for Device Driver Problems:
In the above Device Mangers, double-tap or double-click a device category to expand it. If there's a yellow warning icon that shows there might be a device problem on the name of a device, there might be a problem with it.
Enable or Disable Device:
If you want any device to be disable, then right click on the device driver list in device manager and click disable.
To enable it again, right click on device driver and click enable.
Update Device Driver:
If you have a hardware device that isn't working properly with your computer, you probably need an updated driver. There are many ways to update a driver:
In the Device Manger, right click on the device
Use Windows Update. You might need to set Windows Update to automatically download and install recommended updates.
If your device came with a disc, then installs a driver for the device from this disc.
Download and update the driver yourself. Use this method to install a driver that you download from the manufacturer's website.
Roll Back a Driver:
Device Driver Roll Back reinstalls the driver you were using previously and restores any driver settings that were changed when you added the new driver.
- In the Device Manager, Right-click the device that you want to work with, and then click Properties.
- On the Driver tab, click Roll Back Driver.
- Click Yes when you receive the following message: Are you sure you would like to roll back to the previous driver?
- The previous device driver is restored. Click Close.