An Introduction to Drivers


Maintenance & Performance



What is a driver?

A device driver (sometimes simply referred to as driver ) is a software program that tells your computer’s operating system how to communicate with a particular piece of hardware. Examples of hardware that require drivers include graphics cards, Wi-Fi, and network adapters.


What is an Intel® generic driver versus a computer manufacturer customized driver?

A generic driver provided by Intel® is a driver version that is not customized for specific variants of hardware sold by different computer manufacturers. When available, Intel recommends using drivers from your computer manufacturer.

Intel offers generic versions of drivers, while computer manufacturers:

  • May have pre-installed customized drivers with altered features.
  • May have verified these drivers for use with the devices on that particular system.

What to do when you get an error while trying to install a driver

Check out the following articles related to error messages. If you can't find the error message you're seeing, notify us by using the Give Feedback widget button at the bottom of most Intel Support pages.

  1. Errors Reported By Microsoft for Graphics Drivers
  2. Computer Manufacturer Graphics Driver Detected
  3. Minimum Requirements Error Message when Installing Intel® Graphics Drivers
  4. Error Codes for Intel Graphics Driver Versions and Older
  5. Error Codes for Intel Graphics Driver Version and Newer