Driver Detection Programs?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by Birdman, Oct 2, 2006.

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  1. Birdman

    Birdman Registered Member

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    Can someone please recommend a good Driver Detection software for XP (that checks installed drivers and shows newer/updated versions)?

    I've been using one called Driver Detective but have ditched it due to poor customer service (the worst) and wrong driver update listings.

    Which is the BEST on the market for this purpose?

    Thanks.
     
  2. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    IMHO, its better to just download the latest drivers from the manufacturer.
     
  3. ErikAlbert

    ErikAlbert Registered Member

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    Indeed, it's predictable that such softwares can't be up-to-date and complete.
     
  4. TheQuest

    TheQuest Registered Member

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    Hi, Birdman

    MyDrivers are very good, it will can also back up all the drivers on a system just in case you need to reinstall.

    The latest version is: MyDrivers 3.11.

    Or there are these of which are similar, but I have nerver tried: Driver Genius Professional

    Take Care,
    TheQuest :cool:
     
  5. Birdman

    Birdman Registered Member

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    Thanks. I've also heard and read that DriverGuide Toolkit is pretty good as well.

    I'm trying to decide between DriverGuide Toolkit, MyDrivers and Driver Genius Pro.

    Anyone care to recommend 1 out of those 3 based on personal experience? thanks.
     
  6. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Wow, interesting idea! I used to believe as WSFuser, however, Nvidia and Soundblaster have presented quite a challenge. Wouldn't it be something if the program really could find the "right" drivers. (which I doubt even exist!). I may give it a shot!

    -HandsOff
     
  7. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    what do you mean?
     
  8. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Oh, they are both notorious for their bad drivers, and worse still, there are at least a dozen drivers out there for both of them.

    The word I've heard is that that the creative drivers for SB Live R3 that I have are so bad that you are recommended by some to use xp's built-in drivers instead of any from creative. I guess creative adds a lot of features that cause problems, most notably an annoying intermittent Popping from the speakers.

    NVidia GForce4 4400ti drivers are notorious for causing shutdown problems (actually SB drivers are too!). I've installed at least a dozen drivers for these cards but now I've just learned to put up with the symptoms...and dream of a new computer...I'd really like to get a good sound card with a "breakout box" with analog inputs, but Not sure which one I like.


    -HandsOff
     
  9. WSFuser

    WSFuser Registered Member

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    i dont have a sound card, let alone one by creative, but i do have two computers with nvidia graphics.

    ive used numerous drivers and only a few (91.31 and 91.33) gave me problems. im now happily using the latest 92.91 beta.
     
  10. Alphalutra1

    Alphalutra1 Registered Member

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    What I wish is that windows would incorporate a better driver management system that would automatically update drivers, but that would be too easy and too much like Linux wouldn't it :eek: :D (because remember, everything is just a pacman -Syu away :cool: )

    Alphalutra1
     
  11. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Actually, I'm not so sure automatic is good...If something works I just let it be. For instance creatives drivers seem to get worse and worse.

    WFSuser- I had to be the first one on the block to have the Geforce4. It was a landmark event of sorts, and I'm not sure what upgrades apply to my specific card, actually. And the driver itself does fine for my needs, but they do have a reputation for causing shutdown problems, and guess what? I've got shutdown problems! That doesn't mean it's NVidia, but it's not the kind of reputation I'd want to have, either.

    I also have to say that I briefly like the semi transparent windows and window resizing, and so on, but they seemed to cause problems so now I don't use those features.

    -HandsOff
     
  12. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    I don't favor updating drivers - unless you have the original ones for backup - but if you really must, only the updates from the manufacturer. Even if they are bad, they are still better than various unofficial drivers.
    Mrk
     
  13. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Mr. K -


    I would say that I am mostly in agreement with that statement. The problem with video cards, especially, with NVidia chips is: Who is the manufacturor? My Nvidia GForce4 4400ti was sold through gateway computers. I am not sure that they did not customize the card...maybe even assemble it. Gateway only ever listed 2 drivers for their card. Microsoft Hardware updates listed many more (after analysing during automatic updates). Then you look at NVidias own sight and there are countless drivers. None of these sources indicate why the driver was upgraded, or what problems and old driver may have. I asked gateway should I try the updated drivers and they said they don't support them. Now that doesn't answer the questions of are they applicable or not. Basically, the message is, try random drivers to fix unknown problems whether real or imagined, either way you are on your own! Thanks Gateway, M$, and Nvidia! It is such a pleasure working with you guys!

    I mean shouldn't it be just a little easier to make a driver selectiono_O If there is a driver upgrade can't the say what the upgrade concerns?

    -HandsOff
     
  14. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    U can get DriverGenius free.

    https://www.wilderssecurity.com/showthread.php?t=152279
     
  15. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    I think one of the major problems when buying a PC is not really knowing what's inside it. In a way, it's like buying a car. You end up being solely dependent on your garage to work it out for you.
    Luckily, you have a choice with computers. I like to buy hardware from companies that I'm comfortable working with, assembling my machines piece by piece, even if it may cost a little more.
    But then, I'll be sure my manufacturer is someone I can relate to, at the very least through their support online - even if it's only just help htmls.
    As to drivers and M$ - they are not the only ones. You can go for Linux. And never buy a prebuilt preinstalled machine. In the long run, it's less worth it. Go through the catalogue and have the machine custom-built. You don't even have to do it alone - they will gladly take extra cash to put it together.
    Mrk
     
  16. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Hi Mrk, what about writing a guide ""how to construct ur own DeskTop( esp one that have both windows and linux compatibility and specific software compatibility like ATI which has problems on mmany systems).
    Thanks
     
  17. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    I'm listening. Do elaborate a bit.
    Mrk
     
  18. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Nothing much, just a guide with poinyts about choosing write hardware combo for a desktop, Motheboard, HD, processor, graphics, memeory etc with personal experience about different manufacturers, addressing linux compatibility at the same time( like Nvidea versus ATI). It will be good for those who never made a system themselves.
    I know there are many articles on different sites but to me they are more theory. I like to hear the practical experience from users. When U post it, then other users here who construct their own system can give more feedback. It might be interesting. Just an idea, may be some time later when u havre plenty of time( if ever), or may be after Vista launch otherwise the guide might become partially obsolete very soon.
     
  19. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    You do realize that it is a very difficult issue.
    The number of possibilities is huge. Let's say you have 3 cpus, 2 mobos, 2 types of ram, 3 types of gpus, 3 hard disks, and 2 types of operating system, that alone, and this is being hugely generous about the number of options, that alone gives you:
    3 x 2 x 2 x 3 x 3 x 2 = 162 possible setups.
    In reality, the mix is close to several thousands.
    Then you have printers, cameras, and more.
    Then, sometimes issues stem from software installations.
    The thing is hardware is rather specific. Operating systems are general. It is much more logical to look in flaws in operating systems vs hardware then the other way around. Because when a hardware issue occurs, there could be a million reasons to the incompatibility.
    My personal experience with hardware - compared to software experience, it's rather limited. You change hardware once every 3-4 years while you test hundreds of programs in that time.
    Most often, hardware setups very little change - usually they are completely replaced.
    I've had / used / tortured maybe 20 PCs in my lifetime at home, plus maybe another 20-50 machines that belong to other people, like hard disk swaps, network cards, ram swaps, cdrom swap etcs. That's hardly enough to draw anything conclusive. Especially since I did not try to keep track of what I was doing in an analytic sort of a way.
    Luckily, I have successfully avoided hardware problems so far. Cunning or chance, I'm not quite sure.
    And now the punchline, I have never used ATI cards. I've always went for Nvidia.
    I would like to help - but as much as I'd like to be all-knowing, I'm not one and I'm not the best hardware man you find.
    Cheers,
    Mrk
     
  20. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    Ya, U are right. It,s quite a long list to go.
     
  21. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    I used to imagine it would be hard to assemble a computer. Now I don't. The reason being in the interval between buying my current computer vintage 2001 gateway and now I have discovered you can make an end run around a lot of hype by getting info from fellow computer users.

    To Gateways credit, I have bought my last two computers from them and they were both very balanced systems. I chose them because they used brand name components, not generic, and had open specifications. I have since learned that manufacturers like Gateway are apparently free to do just about whatever they want, including substituting parts, and lying about specs, and the courts will not hold them accountable. Gateway won in lawsuits, but the publicity killed them as a legitimate choice. I now feel I have to build my own. If companies can actually advertise computer a, then sell you computer b, the only way to get computer a is to assemble computer a.

    I haven't worked out whether I will buy the parts online, or go down to the local Fry's and pick up sale items. It's a ways off though, so no rush. There is no way I am going to let them install any software other than o/s and drivers. and only that so I know that everythink works, then I will reinstall everything. I am even toying with the idea of getting one of those monstrosity alien looking giant modded cases. I have sort of a strange sense of humor...

    ****
    A- I downloaded the drive genius, what the heck, it's free! I'm undecided about running it. My computer runs just fine with the exception that it will always reboot, instead of shut down. Almost surely a driver issue, though probably not a simple one. Anyway, I've learned to live with it.


    -HandsOff


    HandsOff
     
  22. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    U are pretty tolerant. I can,t go along with this.
     
  23. Mrkvonic

    Mrkvonic Linux Systems Expert

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    Hello,
    HandsOff, I would advise you not to let them to do any installations whatsoever! Tell them, "Hands off me computer!"
    Do it yourself. Don't let them scar the machine with incompetence.
    Mrk
     
  24. HandsOff

    HandsOff Registered Member

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    Realistically, windows is very complex and vast portions are undocumented. All of the xp installs in the world probably have problems. Some of the problems we don't see are much more significant than the little quirky falterings that catch our eye. In fact, I sometimes wonder if M$ purposely generates noticeable, but trivial problems just to distract us from the important ones beneath the surface.

    At any rate take a look at your event logs. let he who is without errors cast the first stone!

    Anyway- in more detail, my solution to the shut down thing on the rare times i actually want to shut down is to click shut down, wait for the "windows is saving settings" screen. When the hard drive stops writing, I hold the power key down to kill the power. Not a big problem


    Mr. K. -

    LOL - It is the sort of thing I might do if my back was against the wall. There is a chance that it is a very good program. It's potential for being a spy tool, however, is intimidating though. A program that examines your configuration and then connects to the internet? I would like to think such a program would work in a mode where it simply downloads driver database files and then identifies issues and tells you what you need (with an option for idiot one push operation). Somehow I doubt that's how it works. I hope I'm wrong. A legitimate program working the way that I outlined would be a huge benefit. WHO WANTS TO BE THE GUINEA PIG?


    -HandsOff
     
  25. aigle

    aigle Registered Member

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    I really hate this thing. I hardly manage one problem/ issue when I find another. Though all are mainly trivial but as I said I can,t go along with issues so these thinngs always bug me, esp with lack of knowledge.
     
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