Backing up Device Drivers on Windows XP

Device drivers play an integral role in the basic functioning of your operating system and hardware. However, when a good driver goes bad, it can stir up chaos in your operating system. An outdated driver may cause your hardware to stop working, crash software applications and even the computer itself. The simple solution to this problem is keeping your drivers updated and backed up for easy restoration.

Where to Start: System Restore

System Restore is a utility built into the Windows XP operating system. Though primarily used to restore the system to an earlier point, it also provides a way to backup your device drivers. System Restore is very efficient and incredibly easy to use.

To launch System Restore, open the “Start” menu, select “Programs,” “Accessories,” “System Tools,” and finally “System Restore.” You may be presented with two different options depending on the version of Windows installed on your computer: “Create a Restore Point” or “Open System Protection/Create Restore Point.” Both will serve the purpose for what we are trying to accomplish. After making a selection, you can then enter a brief description regarding the restore point. For example, you may want to type in text that reminds you that the restore point was made before installing a particular device.

The Purpose of System Restore

System Restore allows you to creates a restore point that can be used at a later time should something go wrong with your system files or device drivers. For example, if after installing a new printer, you find that it interferes with another driver or software application, you can “roll back” your system settings to the point you specified in System Restore.

If you want to perform a restore, simply head back to System Restore and select the restoration point. While the utility recommends a restore point by date, you typically have the option to select one that best suits your needs.

Precautions to Take

To be extra cautious, you may want to backup your XP device drivers on a CD or other storage media. In order to do so, you must find out what files are specific to what drivers. Go to the “Control Panel,” click “Device Manager,” and find the appropriate device. Right-click the device and select “Properties.” From there, click on the “Driver” tab and select “Driver Details.” This will show you a list of all the files and paths associated with a particular driver. Write down these details and use Windows Explorer to locate the appropriate driver files. You can then use your preferred backup method to save them. Be sure to keep the path information along with the disc just in case they need to be restored on the hard drive. If you don’t know where to restore the driver files, they are essentially worthless.

The System Restore utility offers the easiest way to backup and restore system files, settings and drivers. Best of all, this process has absolutely no bearing on your applications. It simply restores your system to a previous state while leaving everything else intact.

Adam K Smith is an eminent author on Device Drivers for all types of Computers. To Safely Update All Your Drivers and Fix Your Drivers Problem Instantly Visit:

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By admin on June 1, 2010 · Posted in Systems

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