Hardware and Software on a computer
In order to understand how to update drivers on your PC, you need to first understand how computers themselves work. The computer that you are using to read this article, (including Smartphones) is made up of hardware and software, which work together to enable you to carry out the wide variety of things. Below is a list of some of the hardware components that can be found on a computer;
- Universal Serial Bus Controllers
- System devices
- Storage controllers
- Sound, video and game controllers
- Software devices
- Disk drivers
- Bluetooth Devices
- Audio inputs and outputs
A good example of software on a computer is the Word Processing program, Microsoft Office Word, which is being used to type out this article. Another example of software is the Operation System. In my own case, my computer is running on the Windows 10 Operation System.
So, how do the two components that make up a computer communicate with one another? This is where drivers come into play. Computer drivers are a form of software that has been designed specifically for the purpose of enabling communication between a computer’s hardware and its Operation System.
Without them, computers would be nothing but expensive pieces of hardware and software. As an example, this article would not be there without the drivers that tell the computer’s Operation System when keys on the keyboard are being pressed. Every other hardware component; including printers, mice, sound cards, network devices, and many more, would be non-functional without drivers.
What Happens When Windows Encounters Driver Errors?
Problems with any of the drivers that are on your PC are usually easy to diagnose; you printer, mouse, modem or any other piece of hardware may start working erratically. In the worst of situations these devices may even stop working altogether, as the communication channel (the drivers) that exists between them and your computer’s O.S breaks down.
Diagnosing Driver Problems
There are many things, besides the drivers, that can go wrong with computers. So, how can you tell if, as an example, the issues that you have been encountering with your printer are being caused by driver errors?
The answer to this question can be found in the Device Manager. You can read the article in the following link to learn more about the Windows Device Manager and how to open it.
How to Update Drivers on Your PC
Once you have diagnosed drivers as the cause of the problems that you have encountered with any of the hardware components that make up your computer, you can easily resolve the issue by updating your PC’s drivers. So, how do you update drivers on your computer.
Through Device Manager
You can update drivers on your computer by right clicking on the faulty driver in Device Manager and clicking on “Update Driver Software.” Windows gives you the option to either make the update from a location on your computer (you would, in this case, already have downloaded the drivers), or from the internet. If you choose to have Windows look for the drivers on your behalf, the OS will automatically search for them on appropriate sites.
Manually look for the drivers from the internet
It is also possible for you to update drivers on your computer by manually looking for newer versions from the internet.
Manufacturers of devices such as printers and other hardware components are constantly refining the drivers that go with their devices to keep up with changes in the Operation System.An example of this is HP, which posts on its website the drivers that are needed by the thousands of devices that it manufactures.
Use Driver Management Utilities
There are hundreds of utilities on the internet that have been designed to automatically update drivers on PCs. This is, definitely, a hassle free way through which you can keep your computer going. Click on the image below to try out System Mechanic, one of the PC performance utilities that we recommend to our readers.