How to Install a Standard VGA Driver in Windows XP

By Jason Artman

Video card manufacturers release updated drivers for their hardware periodically to address issues that appear with new games or increase the performance of their products. For best performance, you should always keep your video card drivers updated. However, in rare occasions, you may find that a driver update causes a problem, perhaps because of an incompatibility with another hardware device. If this happens, you can make Windows revert to a generic driver called a "Standard VGA driver." This can enable you to delete the faulty video card driver and reinstall a driver that is known to work properly.

Step 1

Click the "Start" button, and then click "My Computer." Browse to "C:," the "Windows" folder and the "Inf" folder.

Step 2

Double-click a file with the name "oem#.inf," where "#" is a numeral such as "0." The file opens in Notepad. Each file corresponds with the driver for a specific hardware device in the computer. Look for a reference to your computer's video card. Continue this process until you have examined all of the "oem#.inf" files.

Step 3

Move each "oem#.inf" file containing a reference to your video card to the desktop. For each file that you move, move the oem#.pnf" file with the same number. Close the Windows Explorer window.

Step 4

Press the Windows logo and "R" keys on the keyboard simultaneously to make the "Run" dialog box appear. Type "devmgmt.msc" without quotation marks and press "Enter." The device manager opens.

Step 5

Click the plus sign next to "Display Adapters" to expand the category.

Step 6

Right-click your video card, and then click "Uninstall." Click "OK" to confirm.

Step 7

Click "Yes" to restart your computer when prompted. If you moved the correct "oem#.inf" and "oem#.pnf" files to the desktop, Windows will be unable to locate the specific driver for your video card after restarting and will load the standard VGA driver instead. The Found New Hardware Wizard will appear after a moment.

Step 8

Select the radio button labeled "No, not this time" and then click "Next."

Step 9

Select the radio button labeled "Install from a list or specific location," and then click "Next."

Step 10

Select "Don't Search, I will choose the driver to install" and then click "Next."

Step 11

Click "Display Adapters," and then click "Next."

Step 12

Click "Standard VGA," and then click "Next."