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Posts Tagged ‘Vista’

How To Access Device Manager in Windows Vista

January 11th, 2010 No comments

The Device Manager is a part of Microsoft Windows Vista. It gives you an organized view of all recognized devices installed on your computer. The Device Manager is used to change options, manage your drivers, enabling and disabling your devices, such as your hard disk drives, USB devices, keyboards, sound cards and more.

To access the Device Manager in Windows Vista:

  1. Click the Start Menu
  2. Type “Device Manager” and hit return
    screen_start_type_device_manager

OR

  1. Click the Start Menu,
  2. Click the Control Panel,
    btn_control_panel
  3. Click the Device Manager Icon
    icon_device_manager

NVIDIA GPU driver v191.03 released

September 28th, 2009 No comments

NVIDIA has released it’s newest driver revision for GeForce 100, 200, 6000, 7000, 8000, 9000 GPUs. The download is approx. 100MB, this beta Windows XP/Vista/7 driver delivers the following changes:

  • Adds support for OpenGL 3.2 for ION, GeForce 100, 200, 8000 and 9000-series GPUs.
  • Big anti-aliasing or SLI performance improvements for a handful of titles.
  • For graphics cards supporting multiple clock states, 3D clocks correctly return to 2D clocks after exiting a 3D application. This will have big power savings for impacted users.
  • Adds support for DirectX 11’s DirectCompute (Compute Shaders) API on GeForce 8000, 9000, 100 and 200 GPUs.
  • Added support for 3D Vision Discover, a feature to enable stereoscopic 3D for games.

This is a fairly important release, particularly due to the inclusion of the DirectCompute API. Note that this does not mean the compatible GPUs are DX11-ready; DirectCompute merely requires stream processors, and all recent GPUs have them. It can be expected that ATI will do the same thing with their next driver release.

Download

Windows Vista & 7 x86-32: Here
Windows Vista & 7 x86-64: Here
Windows XP x86-32: Here
Windows XP x86-64: Here

Tools to Troubleshoot Vista system drivers

March 26th, 2008 No comments

You have probably experienced problems with your drivers if you are running Microsoft Windows Vista. Most of these problems have to do with the drivers on your device being incompatible with Vista. Although it seems that many companies are coming out with driver updates to solve this problem, you might still have problems with this. Here’s how to troubleshoot your driver problems:

If you are looking for detailed device information on a specific driver, you can go to your Device Manager, select the device from the list, and then view the device’s property sheet. This works great if you know which specific driver you are having issues with. However, if you are not sure which driver is causing the problems, this way is very time consuming. Instead,  you can use a command-line tool called Driver Query.

Using Driver Query

Driver Query (Driverquery.exe) is a command-line tool  that is designed to provide you with a detailed list of all the device drivers installed on a local system or on any system on a network. To do its job the Driver Query provides you with a series of command-line parameters. (You can use the Driver Query command without any parameters, but using them allows you to get more specific details as well as format the results.)

For example, using the /si parameter provides information on just the signed drivers. Using the /v parameter (verbose mode) provides more details. Using the /fo parameter allows you to format the results as a list or to save the results in a CSV file (Comma Separated Values) so you can open them in a spreadsheet application such as Excel. (If you want to do any type of detailed analysis, you should save the results as a CSV file.)

To create a spreadsheet file containing information about only the signed drivers, you would open a Command Prompt window and type the command:

Driverquery /fo csv /si > signeddrivers.csv

To create a spreadsheet file containing detailed information about all the installed drivers, you would use this command:

Driverquery /fo csv /v > alldrivers.csv

Vista Driver Problems – How to Troubleshoot

February 24th, 2007 No comments

Are you having errors, struggling with your computer locking up, or even seeing the “Blue Screen of Death”? If you are running Windows Vista, the problem can probably be attributed to a third-party driver that is faulty. The device drivers that come with Microsoft Windows Vista have a digital signature that tells you that the driver has met a certain level of testing and that it has not been altered. Any hardware that carries a “Certified for Windows Vista” logo om it will come with drivers that have a digital signature from Microsoft which indicates that the product was tested for compatibility with Windows Vista.

That being said, not all third-party hardware manufacturers are willing to take the time and effort to submit their products to Microsoft for certified testing and aren’t really interested in having the digital signature from Microsoft assigned to their drivers. Because of this, uncertified drivers are a big problem for Vista users.

Lucky for you, Windows Vista comes with a great utility called “Driver Verifier Manager”. It is not a new utility, (it came with Windows 2000 and Windows XP) but the version that comes with Vista has some new features which make it easier to use.

Vista comes with two versions of the Driver Verifier Manager — a command-line version and a GUI (Graphical User Interface) version. This tutorial will cover the GUI version.

Once enabled, the Driver Verifier Manager will go to work in the background and will perform a series of extreme stress tests on the selected driver(s) in an attempt to cause the driver(s) to fail. (The tests that the Driver Verifier Manager performs will occur as you use your system over time,under normal circumstances. It might take some time to identify a problem, if there is one at all. Don’t expect immediate results.)

If the driver does fail, it will cause a BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) and a “Stop Error Message” that will contain information that you can use to determine and eliminate the problematic driver. If after a few days, the driver doesn’t fail and cause a BSOD, then the driver may not be the cause of the problem. Either way, you will have to disable the Driver Verifier Manager once you are done troubleshooting. ***Once you enable it, the Driver Verifier Manager will remain active in the background until you disable it.***

To launch the Driver Verifier Manager, click the Start button, type “Verifier “in the Start Search box, and press [Enter]. When you do, you’ll encounter a UAC (User Account Control) and will need to respond accordingly. You’ll momentarily see a Command Prompt window and then the Driver Verifier Manager will launch and display a wizard-based user interface.
driver_verifier1

The “Create Standard Settings” option is selected by default, and in most cases this option is the best way to start. When you use this option, the Driver Verifier Manager selects a standard set of driver verification options. (If you later decide that you want to perform more specific tests, you can select the “Create Custom Settings” option, which will display all the available driver verification options and allow you to select the ones that you want.)

Remember, when you are done troubleshooting, you need to to disable the “Driver Verifier Manager”. To do so, use the “Delete Existing Settings” option.

Selecting the “Display Existing Settings” option will show the driver verification options that have been activated and will list the drivers being tested.

Once you enable it, the Driver Verifier Manager remains active and performs its stress tests in the background. If you select the “Display Information About The Currently Verified Drivers” option, the Driver Verifier Manager will display statistics on the utility’s current actions.
driver_verifier2

The Driver Verifier Manager provides you with several options for choosing which driver you want to test. Usually, it is the unsigned drivers which are most likely to be causing you problems. Select the ” Automatically Select Unsigned Drivers” option and click “Next”, you’ll see only those drivers installed on your system that are not digitally signed by Microsoft. If there aren’t any unsigned drivers, an error message will appear.

If you suspect that signed drivers designed for a previous version of Windows may be installed on your system and causing problems, select the “Automatically Select Drivers Built For Older Versions Of Windows” option. If you select this option and click Next, you’ll see a list of drivers that are digitally signed by Microsoft but are designed for previous version of Windows — most likely Windows XP. If there aren’t any signed drivers for an older version, an error message will appear.

While not really a very sensible option when it comes to standard troubleshooting practice, you can select the Automatically Select All Drivers Installed On This Computer option. If you select this option, the Next button will change to Finish and you’ll be prompted to reboot your system. (As a general rule of thumb, it is better to troubleshoot a single or a small set of possible problems as it will be easier to determine the cause.)

If you want to see all the drivers installed on the system and be able to pick and choose which ones to test, choose the “Select Driver Names”

Select the “Automatically Select Unsigned Drivers” option and click “Next”. Here is where you will see the list of drivers installed on your system that are not digitally signed by Microsoft. Next, click “Finish” and then restart your system.

verifier3