How to Replace USB Drivers in System32

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Windows installs drivers every time you connect a device to your computer. If the drivers don't install or are installed incorrectly, the device will not work on your system. The drivers for your USB devices are stored in the system32 folder of your hard drive. You can use the Device Manager to see which driver files in the system32 folder correspond to which USB devices. You do not want to manually delete these files from the system32 folder though, but instead should use Windows or the manufacturer's program to update them.

  • Click "Start," type "Device manager" (without quotes) in the search bar and click on "Device Manager."

  • Double-click on "Universal serial bus controller" to expand the list of USB devices. Other USB storage devices will be listed under the "Disk Drives" option. Right-click on the USB device you want to check, and then select "Properties."

  • Click the "Driver" tab and click "Driver Details." You will see all the driver files installed for this device, including the folder location of "C:\windows\system32\drivers." This page will also tell you the driver version number so you can see if you have the most recent version.

  • Determine if your USB device drivers are best updated using the Windows automatic updater or a manufacturer version online. Some USB device manufacturers use a custom program to install, update and remove drivers from your Windows system. Check online at the manufacturer webpage for your USB device to see if you need to download the software. If software is available, download and run that program instead of the Windows updater. It will come with its own instructions.

  • Navigate back to the Device Manager main window if there is no third-party software for the device. Right-click on the device and select "Update Driver Software."

  • Choose "Search automatically for updated driver software." The Device Manager will recommend updating drivers if it finds newer ones. Click "Yes" to update.

References

  • Photo Credit Ryan McVay/Photodisc/Getty Images
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