Sometimes it can be hard to find the right drivers for your computer, especially if you update your operating system and suddenly find that half your devices need new drivers. To that end, there are programs out there like Driver Detective that can automatically scan your computer and find the drivers you need. While these programs can save you a lot of time and stress, there are a few downsides to them as well.
Advantages of device drivers
The first advantage, as stated above, is that an automatic driver search program will handle all of your driver updates without you doing anything except running the program. Normally, you’d have to update each driver one at a time, but these programs do it all at once. They generally work by searching a huge database of drivers for the ones your computer needs, then downloading and installing them. You don’t have to deal with the individual install programs, either—the program usually does all of that for you, too.
Another helpful thing a program like Driver Detective does for you is that is can find missing drivers that you didn’t know about. Sometimes, you may only lose one file or two, and that file may not be one of the critical drivers for a device. These automatic driver programs will double-check all the drivers to see if any are missing, and if any are, they will download replacement drivers. This can help prevent computer errors or crashes from occurring.
Device driver software
These programs are usually pretty quick about doing their work, too. Driver Detective, for example, has been noted for taking less than ten seconds to compile its list of missing drivers and searching its database for updated files. Many of these programs have extra tools bundled with them, such as the option to copy all of your driver files to a CD or USB device so you have a backup.
Disadvantages of device drivers
So what kinds of disadvantages could a program like this have? Well, there aren’t that many, but there are a few. Sometimes, the wrong information gets entered into the search software’s database. This can lead to the wrong drivers being downloaded and installed, leaving you with devices that don’t work as they should. There’s also the fact that, no matter how many different drivers are listed in the updater’s database, there’s no way they can contain drivers for every possible piece of hardware. That means you may still end up searching the internet for drivers, especially if your hardware is fairly old.
The final issue with using automatic driver search software is that you have to be certain that the software is valid. With a large number of viruses, spyware, and other dangerous programs out there, you always have to beware of what you download. The best way to know your program isn’t full of viruses is to check for reviews online. If you can find a few reviews from legitimate websites, there’s a good chance the program will work as it should.