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TIP: Don't use the drivers one on the CD-ROM!
Posted by Carlo Guerrero - on Sunday, 06.04.03 - 06:17:51 CET under 11 - Tips and Tutorials - Viewed 10277x
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Stop! Don't install the drivers on the CD!

This has always been my advice to a lot of people who own Pocket PCs. More often than not, you see individuals who are overly excited about a new purchase eager to get everything installed and running, and of course, using the drivers included in the CD. Is there anything wrong with the drivers included in the package? Well, the answer can either be a Yes or a No.

As we all know, most of the Pocket PC peripherals like Keyboards, CF Cameras, CF VGA Cards, CF Radios, CF BT or 802.11b cards, CF GSM/GPRS modules and the like don't normally run in true plug-and-play fashion. Why? Well, the drivers are rarely included in ROM. Is this bad? Not really. This allows for easy updating of the drivers.

Drivers are the software that allows for a peripheral or an add-on module to function with a Pocket PC. The normal practice is to include a working driver with the peripheral device. Since this is written onto a CD, and the CD is mass produced, it is not strange to see that a current product will have the old drivers and manuals in the included CD.

“I got an IR keyboard for my Pocket PC. The review said it works well. I can’t get it to run at all.”

Are the reviewers pulling your leg? Not at all. They have probably downloaded the latest drivers for the peripheral device or accessory for their review. It isn’t that easy to upgrade hardware, but it is much easier to update the drivers. Drivers are normally updated to widen its compatibility with other devices available in the market. Drivers can be made to be more efficient or given more features that add better functionality than ever before. They can be simple updates or they can be total rewrites.

I rarely use the drivers that are bundled with the accessories I buy. I always make it a point to have the latest drivers. Quite often, I would download the latest drivers for the accessory I intend to purchase and install them before going off to the store. The benefits are twofold. I get to test the device if it performs to my expectations before I actually make my purchase and, if ever I make the purchase, I can put it to immediate use.

Whenever you purchase an accessory, just bear in mind that the hardware is just part of the whole package. Its performance also depends on the drivers you decide to install. Go to the device manufactrer's website and check out for the latest drivers and know what it has to offer.


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