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In my experience, most computer hardware & software issues can be fixed by updating the drivers installed on your computer. While the device manager promises to update your drivers, it seldom achieves proper results.
So if the device manager is not doing its job, then maybe you should find a software program that finds missing drivers, outdated drivers and does all this automatically or at a scheduled time.
The good news is there are a lot of programs that download drivers … and I mean, a lot. Here are (some of) the ones that are actually worthwhile.
Driver Booster – Free & Premium
This driver downloader is perhaps my personal favourite, and you should definitely look into this driver updater if you want something decent for free. In my experience, it’s got everything you need to get your laptop/PC back into full upgraded mode. Once the installation is complete, it scans for everything and tells you which drivers need updating. You can update them all in one go or pick and choose and do them one by one. If a reboot is required, it will let you know. I did not go for the paid version initially because the free one was doing everything I needed it to do. But then I did get the premiere version. For just $22.95/Yr for 3 PCs (which is cheaper than everyone else on this list), users get priority over others to driver updates, improved download speeds, and customised driver tweaking to optimise PC gaming (if that’s your thing). If you are looking for a solid and all around powerful experience, Driver Booster 4 comes highly recommended.
DriverEasy – Free & $29.95/Yr
DriverEasy is another of the immensely popular programs for downloading drivers, and for good reason. DriverEasy offers a couple of different versions, including a free version. The program does exactly what you think it does, which is keeping your drivers up to date. That’s more or less all the free version does, but the premium version offers all kinds of options. With the premium version, you can backup and restore drivers, one-click download all drivers, and it even offers a multi-language interface. DriverEasy also claims to be faster than a Windows update, which we unfortunately did not have time to test.
It offers the similar features as DriverEasy; it too restores drivers and automatically schedules for automatic update check. DriverNavigator also supports Win 10 systems like the rest, but the biggest drawback we found was the price tag, at $89.95/Yr DriverNavigator is substantially more expensive than its competitors. It is currently on sale for $39.95 USD so if you want to get this one, now is the time… but if you think you will miss the sale, trust us, this is just a marketing gimmick – $39.95 is the price since two years 🙂
Also, DriverNavigator gives many licences right, so for 1 PC its $29.95 and the above price of $39.95 is for 3 PCs. They have a dropdown for 5, 10 and 50 PCs also.
UpdateStar Drivers 9 – $29.95/Yr
This is one of the lesser known programs for updating drivers out there, but it is still worth mentioning. Why? Well for starters you can download the program for free and run a scan for missing or outdated drivers. Then if you want you can buy their driver downloader for $29.95 (for 1 PC) and $59.95 (for 3 PCs). It functions in many ways like the others on our list and is compatible with Win 10 systems, though, in my opinion, the interface is a little cleaner and easier to follow.
DriverMax – Free & Premium $10.39/Yr
DriverMax is a great choice to update drivers because of its free option. It does everything a driver downloader should, but it is totally free. You can scan and download new drivers and updates, as well as backup drivers to a compressed file (which is handy when reinstalling Windows). There are a few conveniences only available for pro members, but the free version should be more than enough for anyone looking for a free alternative to other programs for safely updating drivers. There is a catch to the free version, the software will catch all the outdated driver stuff but you are allowed to download only 2 drivers in 24 hours… I know, that’s cheeky, but if you wait 24 hours, the option to download any 2 drivers will open again. All the paid plans are for 1 PC only… so the prices are $10.39/Yr, $8.95/Month, $14.51/2 Years and a lifetime plan of $29.80 are all available at DriverMax
These are just a few of the many driver downloaders that are available on the internet. While it ultimately comes down to personal preferences on these programs, they all beat digging out drivers one at a time and leave the default device manager years behind, right? But that’s just our opinion…
If your laptop is pre-installed with manufacturer’s updating software and it too is behaving like device manager, then know that purchasing a driver downloader is a good investment.
What did you think of our list? Which driver downloader would you recommend? Let us know in the comments.
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