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Windows 7: Is it necessary to uninstall old AMD/NVidia drivers before updating?


19 Dec 2011   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 
Is it necessary to uninstall old AMD/NVidia drivers before updating?

Hello everyone my question is very clear that "is it necessary to uninstall AMD/Nvidia Graphics driver before updating? or we can simply download and install and overwrite the existing drivers? i read alot of different comments and views. Some people say that they Uninstall the drivers first than restart and use softwares like Driver Sweep or Cleaner to remove any registry files and than install new Version of the driver where on the other hand some people say that now a days new drivers can be installed without removing the older one and simply upgrades to the new version.

Well i used to Uninstall the drivers before installing the new version and some years ago i used to use Driver Cleaners as well but than i felt that they are'nt compulsary to use. I wanna know what kind of problems we can face if we upgrade the drivers without removing the old one? Will there be glitches, BSOD etc? i made this thread to clearify the concept of the Upgrading and Removing Procedures for both AMD and Nvidia Graphics Drivers and people who search on google dont find much info regarding this issue


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19 Dec 2011   #2

Microsoft Windows 8.1 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Hey Bilal,
You can install over the old ones and for the most part, you will be fine. But the best option is always to uninstall the old ones first, even going so far as to delete the old folders and files after the uninstall. This way it can be installed clean and in pristine shape. This may even go so far as to increase graphic card performance in some cases.
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19 Dec 2011   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit
 
 

Personally, I always unload old drivers before installing newer ones.

In most cases you can leave things to Windows 7, which now has a huge driver database, and Windows Updates to get what is best for your system.

Driver sweepers, finders, cleaners and the like can cause you problems and for that reason I never use them.

As ever, it's a personal choice so just go with whatever is best for you.

One thing you should bear in mind is that manufacturer's drivers may be configured differently to OEM system builders' drivers, which helps to explain why downloading and installing a manufacturer's latest driver can sometimes cause you problems.
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19 Dec 2011   #4
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

No you don't need to uninstall first. AMD's installer has since shortly after the release (and Nvidia's more recently) when installing the new driver, has uninstalled the old before installing the new.

You can uninstall first if you wish, but it is basically an unnecessary step.

Quote:
One thing you should bear in mind is that manufacturer's drivers may be configured differently to OEM system builders' drivers,
Not as far as desktop video card drivers go. At most what you get with the "manufacturer's" goes it the card maker's name showing up in the install windows. There is nothing any different in what they have over the reference AMD or Nvidia driver, and in fact a lot of the card maker's just link right back to AMD or Nvidia.

Laptop video drivers on the other hand can be different from the reference drivers, but only as far as how they work with whatever power scheme or the display that the laptop manufacturer may have used. The basic driver though is still the same as what is from the GPU manufacturer's.
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19 Dec 2011   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stormy13 View Post
No you don't need to uninstall first. AMD's installer has since shortly after the release (and Nvidia's more recently) when installing the new driver, has uninstalled the old before installing the new.

You can uninstall first if you wish, but it is basically an unnecessary step.
this sounds good to me
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19 Dec 2011   #6

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 64-Bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by boogieboy View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by stormy13 View Post
No you don't need to uninstall first. AMD's installer has since shortly after the release (and Nvidia's more recently) when installing the new driver, has uninstalled the old before installing the new.

You can uninstall first if you wish, but it is basically an unnecessary step.
this sounds good to me
You may need to choose the Custom install when prompted.
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19 Dec 2011   #7
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

No idea about that with the Nvidia installer but you don't with the AMD, it does it automatically. A custom install with the AMD driver package is just to allow you to pick and choose which parts of it get installed.

Also why in most cases there is no restart required when updating AMD drivers when done "over the top", as it is taken care of during the install; screen goes black, comes back at a low resolution, goes black again and then reverts to the default resolution (this is when the old is uninstalled before installing the new).
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19 Dec 2011   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

so can i just click on the Express and continue installation or its better to click on Custom? and what options should check/uncheck?
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19 Dec 2011   #9
Microsoft MVP

Win 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Entirely up to you. This is what gets installed with the Cat 12.1 Preview,

Name:  catinstall.png
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Size:  87.5 KB

Personally I always do a custom and uncheck Hydravision as it is something I don't use or need. Really comes down to personal preference as to which parts to install.


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19 Dec 2011   #10

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
 
 

I've never had a problem doing a in-place driver upgrade with AMD or Nvidia. They both do well.



However, I would always do a complete un-install and clean install under a couple conditions.

1. A driver RollBack
For example, If you upgrade to a newer driver thats buggy or breaks one of your favorite games.
I would remove the driver completely before rolling back to a previous one.


2. New Graphics card.
If replacing the GPU no matter what kind it is.



But, in the case of simply upgrading to a newer one, I just do a in-place.
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 Is it necessary to uninstall old AMD/NVidia drivers before updating?




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