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View Full Version : Upgrading drivers in W7 - "on-top" or driver sweeper?


Xophile
10-05-09, 03:32 PM
Does it really matter which way I go?

Thanks

shilk
10-05-09, 04:21 PM
I don't think Driver Sweeper is catching all of the new entries. Don't quote me on that though.

I haven't had any issues by uninstalling it through the control panel and then reinstalling after a reboot.

BelligerentBill
10-05-09, 11:52 PM
I uninstall and use Driver Sweeper with each new versioning. Going from the 191.07 betas to WHQL I just installed over the top since they're supposably the same. No issues.

You're probably probably fine installing new drivers over old in most cases, but I'd rather be safe than sorry.

LBJM
10-12-09, 10:25 PM
driver sweeper has not been updated, so it does not work as well as it used :(

hirantha
10-15-09, 02:41 PM
i dont know but i've been trying CCleaner to clean all the registry entries after uninstalling the drivers.

first uninstall, then restart in normal, run the CCleaner registry cleanup (run it twice to make sure) then install the new drivers.

shilk
10-15-09, 04:48 PM
Yeah. A lot of people are using CCleaner to clean out the excess stuff left after an uninstall now. Not to mention how the new PhysX install in a completely different place now, there needs to be some updates methinks.

BelligerentBill
10-19-09, 08:48 AM
I consider myself a pretty advanced user so I'll tell you guys how I do it EVERY time I swap or upgrade drivers and I really think this is the best way without having to dig out too much garbage. Since I'm running Windows 7 and the default WDM 1.1 drivers reinstall for cards supported at RTM there is an extra unnecessary step that probably doesn't need to be done but I do it anyways. Better safe than sorry.

1). Uninstall Nvidia Physx via Programs (Program and Features in Vista)
2). Uninstall Nvidia drivers via Programs
3). Reboot when prompted
4). Upon reboot run Driver Sweeper with Display and Physx checked
5). Reboot when prompted
6). Upon reboot remove the following registry keys
----HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Nvidia Corporation
----HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Nvidia Corporation

Note: if you have an Nvidia motherboard chipset and Nvidia chipset drivers installed removing these keys could cause problems and should probably be left alone. If you want to be absolutely certain you're performing a clean driver installation you may wish to uninstall the chipset drivers and reinstall them during this procedure which is probably the best bet especially if you're having specific problems that have motivated you do perform a clean installation in the first place.

7). Now dig into HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Contro l\Video\ and expand all the keys. There will be several but the ones you'll be interested in will have a string Service and a value nvlddmkm. There may be more than one, I have two because I have an 8800 GTS for PhysX. Once you've identified these keys delete the parent key labelled as {xxxxxxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxxxxxxxxxx}.

Note: it might be wise to export the whole HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Contro l\Video\ key before deleting just in case you accidentally select the wrong one and delete it that way you can restore it ;)

8). Now you can install the drivers and PhysX package if your PhysX package is separate. Reboot when prompted and you should be all set.

rflair
10-20-09, 05:13 AM
Having a few PC's with Nvidia and ATI cards in them I have NEVER used a driver cleaner, have always installed over top, even in Windows XP.

Even now the only people I see complaining about drivers going screwy are the ones using some sort of driver cleaner and the cleaner itself screwing things up.

Driver cleaners IMHO are a waste, always were.

nekrosoft13
10-20-09, 12:28 PM
Having a few PC's with Nvidia and ATI cards in them I have NEVER used a driver cleaner, have always installed over top, even in Windows XP.

Even now the only people I see complaining about drivers going screwy are the ones using some sort of driver cleaner and the cleaner itself screwing things up.

Driver cleaners IMHO are a waste, always were.

yap, same here

just except i, uninstall old drivers before installing new, but never use sweeper/cleaner etc..

rflair, check your C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository

if you install over, all old driver versions are kept here, like a backup.

Kaguya
10-20-09, 03:54 PM
yap, same here

just except i, uninstall old drivers before installing new, but never use sweeper/cleaner etc..

rflair, check your C:\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository

if you install over, all old driver versions are kept here, like a backup.

Wow, really? You don't use a cleaner? That's neat. If anything, I trust you to know the score so I won't be so scared to install over top anymore (though I do uninstall first).

I have started uninstalling the PhysX drivers as well as the nVidia Display drivers - is that a good plan?

BelligerentBill
10-22-09, 11:59 AM
The thing about NOT performing clean installations is that old settings frequently get left behind, settings which you may not want as they could cause potential problems especially if an architectural change has been made within the driver code itself without removing old values. Nvidia has changed it's uninstall routine with the 19x.xx series of drivers so cleanup is much less necessary.... but I've been in this industry far too long to trust developers to properly remove software when a user specifically requests an uninstallation. The Windows registry is, unfortunately, it's Achilles heel, and until MS requires developers to remove all traces during uninstallation the potential for problems will never be corrected.

Years ago wrote a very thorough manual driver cleaning and installation guide for DriverHeaven.net before driver cleaning applications existed (my guide helped give birth to them). I have been performing clean installations upon every install for 8 years or so and have never once had a problem as a result. I have however had problems arise when installing new drivers over old. As a rule of thumb it's probably quite safe to update over existing installations if the release is of the same series but if you're going from 18x.xx to 19x.xx for example, don't be surprised if something does go wrong. Most likely it won't but if you have the technical know how, it's better to be safe than sorry.

turdhat
10-24-09, 09:47 AM
Having a few PC's with Nvidia and ATI cards in them I have NEVER used a driver cleaner, have always installed over top, even in Windows XP.

Even now the only people I see complaining about drivers going screwy are the ones using some sort of driver cleaner and the cleaner itself screwing things up.

Driver cleaners IMHO are a waste, always were.

The only time I have ever had to use a driver cleaner was going from an ATI card to and Nvidia card. Plus I believe that perhaps this used to help things but hasnt been needed in a long time. IF your drivers get screwy then a driver cleaner can come in handy.

tornadog
10-29-09, 10:20 PM
uninstalling drivers is an unneccessary waste of time IMO, especially if you are installing all the drivers beta or WHQL. No amount of uninstall, software or manual cleaning is going to 100% remove all the stuff. Only guarantee is to format and reinstall OS. I wonder how many people go that an*l!!!!