Saturday, June 28, 2008

How to find drivers for Unknown Devices

Usually, when you buy any hardware the drivers come along with it on a disc. If you lose the driver disc you can always download the necessary drivers from the manufacturer's website. But what do you do when you are not sure of the manufacturer of the hardware? This is quite a possible situation and blogger Vinod Chandramouli provides an excellent trick to deal with it.

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.

  1. Open Device Manager (Control Panel>System>Hardware>Device Manager)
  2. The hardware whose drivers are missing will appear as Unknown device, so it's easier to locate the device.
  3. Right click on the unknown device and click on Properties.
  4. Under the Properties window click on Details tab and select Device Instance Id from the drop down box.
  5. You should see a code similar to this

    PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_27DC&SUBSYS_30868086
    &REV_01\4&1E46F438&0&40F0

  6. The portion of the code highlighted in RED is the Vendor ID and the portion highlighted in GREEN is the Device ID. In this example:

    Vendor ID = 8086
    Device ID = 27DC

  7. Once you have obtained both the IDs, proceed to PCI Database. There you can either search for the vendor from the vendor ID or directly get information about the device along with the vendor name by searching with the device ID.

Great isn't it? Now you will never have to go hunting for correct drivers.

51 comments:

  1. the internet is full of them - benjamin

    ReplyDelete
  2. google is also a good tool - Michael

    ReplyDelete
  3. That's how you find the Vendor ID and Driver ID, but that doesn't guarantee you will get a driver for your device. I didn't have much succes with this strategy, so I advise you not to get your hopes too high...

    ReplyDelete
  4. After you get the manfacturer's name you have to go to their website to download the drivers. If you can't get the drivers even from the manufacturer's site, which is unlikely, nobody can help you.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Never ever lose a disc. NEVER!!!
    It's just so much easier. Anyway, if you have old devices like that you probably could use something shiny and new - remembering to keep the disc safe. DON'T lose it.

    (from a computer illiterate idiot)

    ReplyDelete
  6. halfdone.org

    does the work for you

    ReplyDelete
  7. i saw another post on this, it's easy
    http://geekytips.com/blog/how-to-install-hardware-drivers-easily

    ReplyDelete
  8. NICE READING

    VISIT MY BLOG - http://w-i-n-d-o-w-s.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm guessing you're colorblind, not that thats an excuse when you can write code. #FF0000 or red is red.

    #EA5412 is orange.

    ReplyDelete
  10. @Tomas: Ah, a real geek! :)
    Just to clarify, #FF0000 and #00FF00 didn't look great and so I used a different shade. But it's still RED and GREEN for the normal human eye.

    ReplyDelete
  11. AWESOME POST - I accidentally deleted my CD ROM driver and need to replace it, will use this post over the weekend, thanks!

    Keith Johnson
    Hallandale, Florida
    http://greatdocuments.net

    ReplyDelete
  12. Yes, hardware ID is a great way to find out the device. You can also just use a program like radarsync, which relies on HWID and other internal file ID information to find the device and driver for you.

    ReplyDelete
  13. yeah you could do all that.
    or you could:
    1. run a linux live cd (makes no change to your system).
    2. at the command prompt type:
    lspci
    press enter.

    http://bloglinux.org/

    ReplyDelete
  14. but i did not find any color.
    plz find below what i got.
    ACPI\IFX0102\1

    ReplyDelete
  15. Just use the freeware program "Unknown Devices". This is the quickest easiest way.

    ReplyDelete
  16. This site is a very informative site. You'll like the content of this site. If you have some time, please feel free to visit and read the content of this site. Thank you for your time and good day.

    http://www.squidoo.com/MPI

    ReplyDelete
  17. in device instance id it show USB\VID_0000&PID_0000\5&200B6B02&0&2
    mean both 0 so what to do?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thanks, I didnt know. Very usefull

    ReplyDelete
  19. or you could get vista so it finds its own drivers....

    ReplyDelete
  20. The problem is I have an quest to find a driver that isnt supported on the original computer manf. page... So wtf should I do?

    ReplyDelete
  21. Thanks...its a good write & very useful for me...

    ReplyDelete
  22. Ya, its good man. Some laptops have same devices of different vendors.For ex:for ethernet there are realtek or atheros and so on. So we cant think which manufacturers drivers we have to download. For me its a good idea and thanks a lot

    ReplyDelete
  23. hi thanks for the help

    ReplyDelete
  24. Much easier to use DriverAgent.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Awesome resource, was helpful

    ReplyDelete
  26. LOSE THE DISK? INSTALL LINUX! now all driver problems will be solved...

    ReplyDelete
  27. This site is good and they gives good informations

    ReplyDelete
  28. i had problem finding drivers for win XP and i found this it was very helpful. http://geeks-help.blogspot.com/2011/01/how-to-find-and-install-drivers.html

    ReplyDelete
  29. The easiest, and by far most reliable, as crowd-sourced, is DriverMax. It gives two drivers per day for free.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Searching only by Vendor and Device ID is *not* the way to go. It will fail miserably on laptop modems; older AC'97 Audio; and some laptop graphics.

    Better than DriverMax, is http://DriverZone.com => it is all free. No 2-drivers-per day limitation

    And you can chat with real DriverZone staff in real time to get even the trickiest problem solved

    ReplyDelete
  31. Thanks for the great tip.

    ReplyDelete
  32. ACPI\NSC1100 WINXP driver http://www.ziddu.com/download/16464386/TPM.zip.html

    ReplyDelete
  33. Hi can someone please tell me if there is a driver for: Device Id 0000 Vendor Id 0000 ??

    ReplyDelete
  34. I have a cd for the driver but it can only be installed with windows 98 it wont let me do it on xp or 7 help please?

    ReplyDelete
  35. Device and Vendor ID cannot be 0000

    Drivers for Win98 and WinXP won't work with Win7. Download supported drivers from the manufacturer's website.

    ReplyDelete
  36. that was really helpful
    thnx a lot

    ReplyDelete
  37. thanks, i translate this topic :)

    http://www.moffed.in/2012/01/how-to-find-drivers-for-unknown-devices.html

    ReplyDelete
  38. Great job, always wanted to know how to id missing drivers for hardware

    ReplyDelete
  39. DriverZone.com is good, but I found more helpful website with drivers for free:

    www.magicdriver.com

    ReplyDelete
  40. Thanks! This helped me.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Thanks a Lot.It is a Great help to locate the appropriate device driver :) Thanks Man

    ReplyDelete
  42. please tell me a device without a device driver in linux.. or how can i find the list of such devices?

    ReplyDelete
  43. A very simple way (and time saver for busy PC techs) is Driver Robot!

    YT vid here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dkp84-ukoIA&feature=plcp

    ReplyDelete
  44. excellent info, I was breaking my head on missing drivers...

    ReplyDelete