Having the latest graphics drivers for your graphics card is pretty important for Parsec to work, but some automatic updaters will report the wrong latest driver, and in some cases drivers may misbehave and need to be fully removed and reinstalled. It can get complicated to do this, so this guide will go through how you can do it for consumer GPUs.
Keep in mind this guide is aimed at regular consumer machines. For VMs using Easy-GPU-PV, refer to its documentation on GitHub for more information. For cloud PCs using the Parsec Cloud Preparation Tool, use the update shortcut included in the desktop. For any issues updating these two correctly, refer to their respective GitHub issue sections.
Table of contents
Installing the latest drivers
We do not recommend using automatic updaters, given it is common for updaters to give you older versions, especially on laptops. Follow these steps to get the latest drivers.
What GPUs do I have?
You will need to know what GPU you have before updating them. We made a support tool for listing system information called Oracle, which you can download and run.
In the example above I ran this tool on a laptop with hybrid graphics, and you can see the two GPUs the laptop contains:
- “Intel UHD Graphics”, a weaker GPU that is integrated into my Intel i7-10750h CPU
- “NVIDIA Geforce GTX 1650”, a stronger dedicated GPU
- “Parsec Virtual Display Adapter” is the Parsec display driver, and can be ignored
It's recommend to update all existing Intel/NVIDIA/AMD drivers for the sake of simplicity.
If you see a Microsoft Display Adapter instead of your actual GPU name, it will be either because you're using RDP (a non-Parsec way of remotely connecting to this machine), or no drivers are installed for those GPUs. If no drivers are installed, you can copy the listed vendor and device ID, and put them into devicehunt to learn more about the GPU.
- Search for your CPU name through the search bar of the Intel Download Center. Only use your GPU name if you have a dedicated Arc graphics card (e.g. Intel Arc A770)
- Open each result and check which one has the most recent graphics driver listed for your operating system version. Some links are to beta drivers, and it's optional whether you choose to use those
- In "Available Downloads", download and install the .exe file
- If while installing you get the error 'The driver being installed is not validated for this computer', download the zip instead from the same page above, and follow the not validated workaround tutorial (selecting **igcc_dch.inf** if you don't find the .inf the tutorial asks for)
- Restart the computer when the installer has finished
The automatic updates from GeForce Experience usually work, but you might want to do a manual driver search on NVIDIA's site just to make sure the version is correct. Make sure to restart the computer after updating.
Get the updates from AMD's site, by manually searching for the name of your hardware. Avoid using its automatic installer, and look for the link to the actual latest driver, usually found below the link to the automatic installer. Make sure to restart the computer after updating.
Cleaning up old drivers
In case just installing drivers isn’t resolving your issues, consider following these instructions to use Display Driver Uninstall (DDU), remove traces of the current driver, and try reinstalling the current driver again.
Creating a restore point
It’s recommended to create a restore point in the minor chance that something goes wrong with this tutorial. You'll be able to go back to how your computer was before changes were made.
- Open the Windows start menu and type ‘Create a restore point’
- Open the result with that name
- Click ‘Create…’ at the bottom
- Type a description for the restore point (e.g. “Before using DDU”) and click Create
- Download the latest driver setup file from Intel, NVIDIA or AMD's site, using the instructions given further above in this guide. Instead of running the installer, keep the files for using later
- Download Display Driver Uninstaller
- Unplug your ethernet cable or turn off the Wi-Fi to prevent Windows from automatically installing unwanted driver updates
- Boot into safe mode
- Restart your computer from the Windows start menu while holding the shift button
- In the blue screen, go into Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings
- In Startup Settings, click Restart
- Once a screen shows up with options, press 4 to boot into safe mode
- While in safe mode, use Display Driver Uninstaller which you downloaded earlier
- Select the location you want it to extract the program to, and click Extract
- Find the folder the program was extracted to, and open Display Driver Uninstaller.exe
- The program will show settings when first opened, you can leave that unmodified and close it
- Select GPU as the device in the right, then select the GPU you want to remove the drivers from
- Click 'Clean and restart'
- Once your computer restarts, install the driver you downloaded earlier
- Restart the computer again
- Re-connect your ethernet cable or turn on the Wi-Fi again
- Test if Parsec is now working correctly