Reinstalling Graphic Drivers

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This article will cover how to do a clean reinstall of your GPU drivers.  For certain issues such as random system crashes, low gaming performance, or general instability this, reinstalling the GPU can help identify or isolate if the issue is related to software or hardware issues.

Why should I do a clean install of my GPU drivers?

Depending on the type of issue your PC is encountering, you may have been given the recommendation to do a clean reinstall of your GPU drivers.  Issues that can be resolved with a GPU driver reinstall included, but are not limited to:

  • GPU not being detected
  • Screen resolution being locked to a lower resolution (i.e. 800x600)
  • General hardware errors in the Device Manager (i.e. Error 43)
  • Low GPU performance

The reason for a Clean Install is to remove any residual driver files and settings prior to doing a reinstall of the GPU drivers, as these files may be the source of the issue itself.

How do I do a Clean Install of my GPU Drivers?

To do a clean install of your GPU drivers, we recommend using the program Display Driver Uninstaller or DDU by Wagnardsoft.  While many GPU driver installers may include a "Clean Install" option, this may not clear all residual files prior to the GPU reinstall.  DDU can be downloaded from either of the following links:

With DDU downloaded, either Install or Extract the archive to your PC.  It is recommended to either install the program or extract it to the root of your C:\ Drive (i.e.  C:\DDU\) as extracting this to your Desktop, Documents, or any User-related folders can cause the program to not load properly in Safe Mode.


For our example, we'll be extracting this to the root of the C:\ Drive.

Where do I download the latest drivers for my GPU?

Before continuing, we'll also want to download the latest version of your Display Drivers.  We recommend downloading the latest full version of the driver from the manufacturer's website, however you can also use the official updater for your GPU.

*Depending on the GPU type in your system, you may see other driver options available such as Studio or Pro drivers.  These specific driver packs are designed with content creators and professional workstations for stability over performance and may be outdated when compared to their Game Ready counterparts.

With DDU prepared and the new drivers downloaded and ready to go, we'll need to restart the PC in Safe Mode.

Starting your PC in Safe Mode

There are a few methods to restart your PC in Safe Mode, however for this guide we will be accessing the option from within Windows itself.  To do this, open the Start Menu and hold the SHIFT key on your keyboard.  Click the Power option, then click the Restart option and release the SHIFT key.


After a moment, your PC should open an options screen asking you to Choose an option.  We'll be selecting the Troubleshoot option, followed by Advanced options.


In the Advanced options menu we'll be choosing the Startup Settings option and finally the Restart button.  This will cause your PC to restart back to a blue screen, where you'll be presented with a few different numbered options.  We recommend choosing either option 4) Enable Safe Mode or option 5) Enable Safe Mode with Networking to load your PC into Windows.  If done properly, you'll be at a Desktop with a black background and the words Safe Mode in all 4 corners.

Using Display Driver Uninstaller (DDU)

Once you are loaded into Safe Mode, we'll need to go ahead and open Display Driver Uninstaller.  If you installed the program using the official installer, it will be located in your Start Menu while if it was extracted you'll need to run it directly from the folder.


If this is your first time running DDU, you may get a pop-up with a few warnings.  Upon clicking OK, you'll also be presented with a few options.  We'll be using the standard options so click Close to continue.

With DDU loaded, we'll select GPU for the Device Type, followed by the Brand of the GPU under Select Device.  Normally, DDU will automatically detect the Brand once the Device Type is selected.

Finally, click Clean and restart (Highly recommended) to start the uninstall process.  This should take around 3-5 minutes on average, at which point your PC will automatically restart.


Once your PC restarts, the system will load with a basic display driver (Microsoft Basic Display Adapter).  In this mode, your screen resolution may be locked to a lower resolution and only one monitor will be active (if you have multiple monitors connected).

Installing your GPU Drivers

NVIDIA Display Drivers & GeForce Experience

To install NVIDIA Display Drivers, double-click the file downloaded earlier in the guide and you'll be presented with a window asking to specify the folder where the drivers are to be saved.  From here, you can simply click OK to continue.


Once the extractor completes, you'll be brought to a screen which will ask you if you want to install the NVIDIA Graphics Driver and GeForce Experience or the NVIDIA Graphics Driver.  GeForce Experience is NVIDIA's driver and game management software that will allow your system to notify and download updates for your GPU drivers automatically.  For the purposes of this guide, we'll be installing both the driver and GeForce Experience and clicking Agree and Continue.


On the next window, you'll be asked to choose either an Express or Custom install for the drivers.  Express will install any necessary drivers and utilities for the GPU, while the Custom option will allow you to pick and choose which optional components are installed.  For this guide, we'll be choosing the Express option and clicking Next.

After a few minutes, the installer will complete and you may be prompted to restart your PC.  It is recommended to restart your PC if prompted, however this may not be required for every install.

To confirm your GPU drivers are properly installed, right-click the Start Menu and choose Device Manager, then expand the Display Adapters section and confirm that the GPU's full name is present.


AMD Radeon Display Drivers & AMD Software: Adrenalin Edition

To install AMD Radeon Display Drivers, double-click the file downloaded earlier in the guide and allow the program to load.  Once loaded, you'll be presented with a screen confirming that we'll be installing the AMD Software: Adrenalin Edition and AMD Radeon drivers.  For our example, this will be done with the AMD Radeon RX 5700.  You may also be given the option to opt in to allowing AMD to collect information from the install process.  From here, go ahead and click Install.


The AMD Installer does not include any additional prompts and will move forward to the the installer itself.  Once completed, you may receive a prompt that says A system restart is recommended in order to complete installation.  From this screen, go ahead and click Restart.


To confirm your GPU drivers are properly installed, right-click the Start Menu and choose Device Manager, then expand the Display Adapters section and confirm that the GPU's full name is present.


Intel Display Drivers

To install Intel Display Drivers, double-click the file downloaded earlier in the guide and allow the program to load.  You'll be presented with a screen asking to Begin Installation.  On the next screen, you'll be presented with the End User License Agreement where you'll need to click I agree in order to continue.


Depending on your GPU, you may get prompted that the driver installer will include a Firmware Update for the GPU.  To continue, click the I agree button.


On the next page you'll be given a breakdown of the components that are going to be installed.  If you would like to exclude certain options, click the Customize button.  For the purposes of this guide, we will choose the Start option to install your GPU drivers.  Once the installer completes, you may be prompted either to Finish or Reboot Required.  We would recommend clicking the Reboot Required button to continue.


To confirm your GPU drivers are properly installed, right-click the Start Menu and choose Device Manager, then expand the Display Adapters section and confirm that the GPU's full name is present.



Do you have any questions not covered by this guide or need further assistance?  Please feel free to reach out to our Customer Support team and one of our friendly support agents will be there to assist you.

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