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Chapter 15. Managing Hardware > Viewing System Hardware

Viewing System Hardware

When you install a new operating system, such as Windows XP, it is important to make sure that you are using the latest software drivers with your system hardware. If you are not using the latest software drivers, your hardware devices might not work to full capacity. You can view your system hardware using a Windows utility called the Device Manager. Device Manager provides you with a list of the hardware types, also known as hardware classes, which are attached to your computer. With the Device Manager, you can determine the software driver versions being used with your system hardware, update the software driver with a newer version, roll back to a previous driver version if the device fails with the new one, or uninstall a driver. After viewing your software driver version numbers, you can contact the manufacturer or visit their web site to determine the latest versions. Most manufacturers allow you to download drivers from their web sites for free.

Use the Device Manager

Click the Start button, and then click Control Panel.

Double-click the System icon in Classic view.

Click the Hardware tab.

Click Device Manager.

Click the plus sign (+) next to the hardware category you want to expand.

Click the device you want to view.

Click the Properties button on the toolbar.

To troubleshoot a problem, click the General tab, and then click Troubleshoot.

To work with drivers, click the Driver tab.

Click OK.

Click the Close button.

Click OK.



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