When hardware that's installed in, or attached to, a computer doesn't work properly, it's often because of a driver problem. Hardware and devices require drivers to work properly with a computer.
Here are solutions to some common driver problems.
You can also try running a troubleshooter to diagnose and fix common problems with hardware and devices.
Click this button:
Fix this problem
Click Run, and then follow the steps in the wizard.
There are several things you can try:
Make sure that the hardware device is compatible with your computer and with your version of Windows. If the device isn't compatible, you will need to find the correct driver. Check the information that came with your device. You can also search for the device on the Windows 7 Compatibility Center website. This website contains a comprehensive list of computers and devices that have been tested to work with Windows 7.
Many devices require special drivers to work properly. Be sure that you have installed any software discs that came with the device.
Restart the computer. Restarting might be necessary if the driver requires it, or if the driver didn't install correctly.
If the device is a universal serial bus (USB) device, disconnect it and then plug it in to a different USB port. Windows should detect the device and install the drivers, and notify you if the device drivers didn't install properly.
Updated drivers might be available through Windows Update. When you check Windows Update, click View available updates to determine if an updated driver is available for your device. For more information, see Update a driver for hardware that isn't working properly.
It's important to set Windows to download and install updates automatically. But even if you have Windows Update set to automatically install important updates for your computer, it still might not be set to install all the updated drivers it finds for your hardware. To automatically get available driver updates for your hardware, set Windows to install recommended updates.
Open Windows Update by clicking the Start button . In the search box, type Update, and then, in the list of results, click Windows Update.
In the left pane, click Change settings.
Under Important updates, click an item in the list.
Under Recommended updates, select the Give me recommended updates the same way I receive important updates check box, and then click OK.
If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
You can also allow anyone using your computer to install updates by selecting the Allow all users to install updates on this computer check box.
For more information, see Understanding Windows automatic updating and Automatically get recommended drivers and updates for your hardware.
You can set Windows to automatically install important and recommended updates or important updates only. Optional updates aren't downloaded or installed automatically. To get all available updates for your devices, periodically check Windows Update for optional updates.
There are several things you can try:
Updated drivers might be available through Windows Update. When you check Windows Update, click View available updates to see if an updated driver is available for your device. For more information, see Install Windows updates in Windows 7.
If you can't find a new driver through Windows Update or the manufacturer's website, try reinstalling the software that came with the device, which might contain drivers.
For more information, see Update a driver for hardware that isn't working properly.
Internet connection problems are most commonly caused by disconnected cables or by routers or modems that aren't operating properly. For information on how to fix these common problems, see Why can’t I connect to the Internet?