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CPU Drivers: Everything You Need To Know! (for Beginners)

Upgrading components on a computer is for the most part very exciting because you will get a significant performance boost.

Components on a computer need drivers so that the operating system (OS) can talk to them and work flawlessly. 

Today, I will explain everything there is to know about the drivers for CPUs specifically. Whether you need them, and exactly what you need for a new or current CPU to work perfectly.

Do you Need To Install CPU Drivers? ( Are CPU Drivers A Thing?)

CPU On Motherboard

When playing games or using software that requires quite a bit of computing power it’s widely recommended to ensure you have the latest drivers for the different components on your computer, more specifically the graphics card. However, do you also need drivers for your CPU, and do you need to install them yourself manually?

You don’t need to install CPU drivers for a new computer, or for a CPU upgrade. CPU drivers come preinstalled on the operating system (OS), such as Windows. If you upgraded your CPU it’s highly recommended to do a fresh install of your OS to stop driver conflicts which can cause a lot of issues.

When you swap out the CPU for a new one, the drivers for your old CPU will still be installed. They can be uninstalled, however, this can still cause a conflict in the backend code of the operating system. This can cause the computer to not boot, or cause fatal errors often and you’ll need to restart your computer.

Therefore, to avoid all of this hassle it’s highly recommended to do a clean install of your OS, after installing your new CPU.

For a new computer altogether, or if you’ve had you’re computer for some time and want to know whether it’s necessary to update the drivers – rest assured you do not need to install the CPU drivers manually yourself or update them.

They are built into any operating system you’re using, and the OS will auto-detect them.

Key takeaways:

  • When swapping out a CPU for a new one do a clean install of your OS.
  • For an existing CPU or a new computer, you do not need to do anything with your CPU drivers.

Are CPU Drivers Important?

Some drivers need to be kept up to date, particularly if you encounter a problem with using a program or a game.

But, how important are CPU drivers, and are they something you should be concerned with so that your computer functions as it should?

As a general rule, CPU drivers are kept up to date and installed automatically by your operating system (OS). If you replace your CPU, though, you should reinstall your OS so that there are no CPU driver conflicts (to be 100% sure you won’t have unnecessary headaches in the future).

A driver is a piece of software that allows a computer component to communicate with the other components and the operating system via using commands sent via computer code. These are handled by the operating system and the BIOS which acts as a central hub between all of the components and all the apps.

Do you Need To Upgrade CPU Drivers?

You do not need to upgrade CPU drivers, the OS will update them automatically when you perform an OS update. The driver packages you can find on the Intel and AMD official websites contain drivers for the integrated GPUs and some utility software developed by them to enhance some CPU features.

Are The Motherboard Chipset Drivers Important For The CPU?

The motherboard chipset drivers aren’t important for the CPU unless you notice performance issues on your computer. In this case, you should check if there is an updated driver on the motherboard manufacturer’s website, you should also do that if you’ve installed a new motherboard.

Symptoms that would indicate you should check if there is an updated motherboard chipset driver are:

  • The computer is crashing/reboots itself
  • Programs crashing/freezing, where they say ‘not responding’
  • It begins to run slower than normal or gets slower over time
  • USB ports not functioning correctly – working sometimes but not others

As a general rule, you don’t need to check for updates to the motherboard chipset drivers regularly as they are only updated somewhere in the range of once every year or two, depending on the specific company that made your motherboard.

Best Way To Install And Update The Motherboard Chipset Drivers

It’s very easy to check and update the motherboard chipset drivers, here’s exactly how to do it.

Begin by checking if there is an update for your operating system (OS) and update it if there is. Then, find out what motherboard you have and go to the motherboard manufacturer’s official website, download the latest version of the driver and install it. 

I started building and fixing PCs in high school. After a couple of years of offering consultancy to a PC repair shop, I became the goto guy for all my acquaintances for PC/Laptop related buying advice or troubleshooting.