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If I Re-Install The SAME PCI Hardware Card In The In The SAME Desktop Windows 7 64-Bit Operating System On The SAME Computer, Will The ORIGINAL Drivers I MANUALLY HAD TO Install Easily Be Found?

Posted on 2012-03-11
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Last Modified: 2012-03-12
Hello. I have a question to ask you. I have a theoretical question that I need to know an answer to.  

You get a piece of hardware like a PCI card (Doesn't matter what it is, this is theoretical.) for your custom desktop computer that has to date the latest operating system installed -- Windows 7 64-bit. You install this PCI hardware card. Your Windows  64-bit operating system cannot find the driver for the PCI card hardware automatically. Chances are this PCI hardware card is some older and/or rare piece of hardware that Microsoft doesn't have the drivers or software for. You have the driver from the CD-ROM that you have installed into your computer and it naturally updates the driver and may or may not add additional software.  

Now, you decide to remove that PCI hardware card from your desktop computer at some point later in time. You do not remove the driver for that removed PCI hardware card, most of us don't. Your Device Manger of course does not show the hardware and drivers any longer of course. NOTE: You still have the same Windows 7 64-bit operating system installed on my desktop computer

At such a time much later on, you re-install that SAME PCI hardware card you originally removed in the SAME desktop Windows 7 64-bit operating system.

Question: If I RE_INSTALL the SAME PCI hardware card in the in the SAME desktop Windows 7 64-bit operating system on the SAME computer, will the ORIGINAL drivers be found by Windows 7 64-bit this time around much easier or completely or not?

Please reply.

Thank you!
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Question by:Bazingeroo
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Accepted Solution

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Run5k earned 500 total points
ID: 37708289
Yes, it should still be there.  After a new hardware component is installed, Windows 7 operating systems store their device drivers in the following location:

%systemdrive%\Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\

Here is a related Experts Exchange article that helps explain the driver store:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/A_3708.html
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Author Comment

by:Bazingeroo
ID: 37708533
@ Run5k:

Hello. Thank you for your response.

An excellent reply and wonderful link! Thank you!

Further Question: What if it is a 64-bit driver file, what is the file path or location they are stored? It must be saved in a different directory?

Please reply.

Thank you!
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Assisted Solution

by:Run5k
Run5k earned 500 total points
ID: 37708536
No, that same folder is still utilized for all of the drivers on a Windows 7 x64 machine.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Bazingeroo
ID: 37713058
@ Run5k:

Hello again. Interesting.  

Thank you again!
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LVL 28

Expert Comment

by:Run5k
ID: 37713068
Glad to help!
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