Interested in Any Program Which Will Allow Me to Remove Hidden Drivers

Hi Everyone:

       I am having difficulty removing hidden network drivers within Device Manager within XP Pro SP2.  Since I am unable to remove them through normal channels within the OS, is there an application I can download and install to carry out this task?

      Any suggestions will be appreciated.

      Thank you.

      George
GMartinAsked:
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sirbountyCommented:
Click Start->Run->CMD
and type the following lines:

Set devmgr_show_nonpresent_devices=1
start devmgmt.msc

Now click View/Show hidden devices and you should be able to find and remove them...
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

      I typed the command but it never automatically opened Device Manager for me to remove the network drivers.

      I must be doing something wrong.

      George
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

     I just figured it out.. Unfortunately, I am still unable to uninstall the network drivers.  I get the following error message each time I attempt it:  Failed to uninstall the device.  The device may be required to boot up the computer.  I can't understand how a network driver would be needed to boot a pc.

      Any further assistance to remove these corrupted network drivers will be appreciated.

     Thank you.

     George
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sirbountyCommented:
Network drivers?  You mean the adapter(s) in Device Manager?  Was the adapter removed/disabled from CMOS when you attempted this?

If so, try this:
Be careful doing this - but go to the registry:
Start->Run->Regedit and look in
HKLM\System\CurrentControlSet\Control\Network
You'll see several hexadecimal entries there that refer to your network adapter - export this entire key before proceeding and then remove the entries that correspond to the adapter you're trying to remove...

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GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

      Yes, the entries within the category of Network adapters.  With regards to the other question, how may a network adapter be removed or disabled from CMOS?  I am not clear on the steps for carrying out this procedure.  Would it prove helpful in resolving this perplexing pc issue?

       In the meantime, I will carry out the registry tweak mentioned.  If any other ideas should come to mind, I certainly welcome them.

       Thanks so much for your quick replies and great suggestions.

       George
sirbountyCommented:
You're quite welcome for the assist - you're always so pleasant to work with George. :^)

As for the CMOS route - if it's an embedded adapter, it depends on the BIOS how to do this.
If it's an external (card in a slot) adapter, shutdown and remove it from the system.  What sort of trouble are you having?
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

      The wireless USB adapter always maintains stability as indicated by a constant green light within Safe Mode, but, it starts blinking again, indicating instability, when in Normal Mode.  
This appears to be a driver issue since this wireless has already been tested and found to work fine on a different pc.  

      Since I believe corrupted or missing network drivers may be the cause, I am interested in any assistance in removing all of them, including the "hidden" network adapter drivers.

       George
sirbountyCommented:
Did you find any 'ghost' icons before in Device Manager using the procedures outlined above?
Have you tried to simply update the existing driver...you can do so using something like Everest Home Edition:
http://www.snapfiles.com/get/everest.html
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi There:

        It is interesting you should ask because I do see some "ghost" entries.  I am not sure how to interpret this though.

        I do have Everest Home Edition and can run it if more information is needed.  Therefore, if more information is needed, I will gladly supply it.

        Thank you so much.

        George
sirbountyCommented:
The 'ghost' entries can be removed - under this section only though - some can render your system inoperable (though Last Known Good would recover from it - it's best to leave the ghost icons under System alone).  

So if you have
USB adapter
usb adapter <ghost>
usb adapter <ghost>
usb adapter <ghost>

You can remove the ghost entries for sure.  Then try Everest.
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

      I will go ahead and remove the "ghost" USB Adapters within Network adapters.  Would you like for me to post the results of the testing for network adapters after Everest is run?

      I have installed the latest software updates for the Microsoft Broadband Utility.  Should this also include the latest network drivers?

     George
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

       Not that I am trying to go off in different directions, but, what exactly does Last Know Good Configuration do?  Does it restore the registry from a previous good working state?

      Thanks

      George

       
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

       I have removed all of the USB adapter ghost icons.  Just out of curiousity, what is the significance of the ghost entries?

       I apologize for so many questions, but, I am trying to learn something from this experience.

       Thank you

       George
sirbountyCommented:
Sure - no problem.
Last Known Good restores the last working state of Windows when you successfully logged in.  There's a few places it restores this information from - in the registry for example, the currentcontrolset is the 'curren't config, the controlset001, 002, etc are the 'backups'.
The ghost errors are just the way windows sometimes creates hardware instances.  This is the way that Plug 'n Play works - if it's a driver that's been removed and reinstalled, or for some reason wasn't able to use the preexisting driver, it'll 'ghost' the old one and install a fresh copy - though sometimes this might cause conflicts, so it's best to wipe them all clean if experiencing hardware difficulties...
GMartinAuthor Commented:
Hi

      Thank you so much sirbounty for your prompt replies.  As you can tell, I split up the points to cover your answers.  The rationale behind this decision stems from the fact I found everyone of your replies to be helpful in making a step forward in this troubleshooting session.  You are certainly a man of much talent, knowledge, and insight.  

       I am happy to report I now have a steady green light on the wireless USB adapter after carrying out all of your suggestions.  However, I am having trouble getting Microsoft Broadband Network Software to configure the USB Adapter to get onto the internet.  I get a message indicating to connect the wireless USB Adapter to the USB port.  Once I do this, the Next button never enables for me to carry on to the finalization of the configuration.

       In any case, I have a separate post devoted to this portion of my pc concern.  Once again, many thanks for sharing your insights.  I learned a great deal from this post.

      George
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