How to Find Drivers for Unknown Devices in Windows?

Sometimes many users find themselves in a situation where they are unable to install the specific driver for their Computer or laptop either due to a missing installation disk or unable to detect the type of driver that is actually needed for their system. Device drivers are the fundamental building block of any computer system. Usually, when you buy any hardware the drivers come along with it on a disc. Upon knowing the type of driver needed, you can download the specific driver from the manufacture’s website. But, what if when you are not sure about the manufacturer of the hardware. Windows does not tell the above information directly, but here is the way you can get it.

windows drivers

Every device has a Vendor and Device ID associated with it. If you can find this ID, you can find the manufacturer. In Windows it’s easy to find the vendor and device ID.

Follow the Process discussed below to know the drivers for unknown devices in windows.

  1. Right click on “My Computer” and select “Manage”. Launch the device manager under computer Management window or you can also find it by going to Control Panel then System, and then Hardware. On clicking hardware a system properties window opens, click on the Device Manager tab.
  2. If you have any device with its driver missing, you will be able to see the device labeled as “Unknown Device” with a yellow exclamatory sign.
  3. Right click the unknown device you wish to find details for and click properties.
  4. Now, navigate to the Details tab and select the “Device Instance Path” form the drop down list.
  5. You will be able to see the Instance path similar to the example given below.
    Ex: PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_3B2F&SUBSYS_040C1028&REV_05\3&11583659&34F0 device instance path
  6. Now, copy the Vendor ID and Device Id of the device in a notepad. The number besides VEN is the vendor ID and the one besides DEV is the device ID.
  7. Now, all you need is to open PCI DATABASE and enter the above details to find the vendor and device build type. PCIdatabase
  8. Now, Google search the Vendor name and Device model to download the specific drivers for the device.

No doubt this is the best way to find details about the unknown drivers in our system and has never failed till date. Another alternative way to fix the yellow warning shown in the driver is given in the link. The drivers are the functional unit for any type of hardware to interact with the system or say they are the software programs responsible for smooth functioning of the hardware. Once you find out the respective driver for your system you can download it and then install it in the system. Upon installation the system will be functioning properly.


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