How To Install a Device Driver

Level of difficulty: Easy

A device driver when taken in the context of computer technology simply refers to a program (software) normally developed by the hardware manufacturer to allow it to interact with the computer system. This driver program is used by the different components and applications in the machine to execute a specific task like printing, DVD reading and writing, or connecting to the Internet among others. Device drivers are generally specific to the underlying Operating System and hardware dependent which means that the correct version must be installed to ensure proper operation of the supported device. In most cases, a new hardware is accompanied with its own device driver and in other instances the manufacturer provides a downloadable (often updated) version from their own website.

Materials Needed:
- Computer
- Internet connection
- Optical drive
- Removable storage
Step 1
There are various ways how to install a device driver. To download from a website, proceed to the next step. To install from an optical media, go to step 4. To use other removable storage types, jump to step 6.
Step 2
Launch your web browser and go to the website of the manufacturer of your hardware or use any search engine like Google or Yahoo! to search for the appropriate device driver.
Step 3
Save the file to a folder in your hard drive. Upon completion of the download process simply run the device driver to install it.
Step 4
To install a device driver from the accompanying CD media, simply insert it into the CD or DVD drive of your machine.
Step 5
An installation program will be launched which will initiate the process. Simply follow the prompts that will appear on the screen to complete the setting up of the appropriate device driver. The installation program will also terminate automatically once the process is completed.
Step 6
Device drivers may also be distributed using removable storage like flash drives. These types usually represent driver updates to take advantage of functions in newer Operating System platforms. Insert the flash drive in the appropriate port.
Step 7
Wait for the Operating System to recognize the removable storage media. The process may start immediately the installation process.
Step 8
If the installation does not begin automatically, simply open the explorer program and navigate to the appropriate drive. Locate the executable file which will launch the device driver application.
Step 9
Make sure to choose the correct version which corresponds to your Operating System. Follow the onscreen prompts until the process is completed.
Step 10
In all device driver installation procedures, make sure to scan the files with your protection software before beginning the process. Once the device driver has been successfully installed into the system, reboot the machine to ensure all changes are reflected in the Operating System.