The Microsoft Update Catalog

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Use Internet Explorer with the Microsoft Update Catalog. Microsoft make this service incompatible with other browsers.

The Microsoft Update Catalog has a large number of drivers which can be obtained by searching directly for the hardware IDs.

When searching taking my ATI graphics card as an example I would search for PCI\VEN_1002&DEV_68B8 and omit the &subsys_xxxxxxxx part (as it finds nothing with the subsys part).

I also tell it to sort by “last updated” as sorting by version orders them numerically. For the ATI/AMD graphics driver versions are listed before version as it starts with a 1.

You also want to make sure the driver matches your version of Windows for instance Windows 8.1 or Windows 7 depending on what version of Windows you have installed. Note newer versions of Windows are usually backwards compatible so can usually take drivers released for previous version of Windows or alternatively have better drivers inbuilt.

You will also note that there are often two drivers listed of the same version:

This is because there is usually both a 64 bit and 32 bit version of the driver. The driver which is the largest in size is usually the 64 bit one.

If you click the links to the left, a windows will open up listing more details for the driver:

The architecture will either be listed as x86 (32 Bit) or x64 (64 Bit).

If you want a driver, select add to basket (there is no charge for any of the drivers).

Select view basket to view all the items in your basket and then download once you have got what you want.

basket2.png (665×537)

Select browse and accept the user account control and then specify a location where you want to download the drivers. Then press continue, the drivers should now download to the location specified.

The download progress will be displayed and done will be displayed beside each driver when completed. You can then close the Window.

In general the downloads will be .cab format:

.cab files are not the same as the .exe or .msi files which you are used to install drivers with.

To completely install a .cab file you need to use the Windows Package Manager which is for the advanced user.

I generally use the update driver within the device manager.

Note the Microsoft Update Catalog is a Microsoft Service and requires the use of Internet Explorer.

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3 thoughts on “The Microsoft Update Catalog

  1. Hello Mr Yip; thank you for your article. I converted the OS on my INSPIRION E1705 from Windows XP to Windows 7 32-bit. My video card used ATI Mobility Radeon X1400. I found the updated driver in the Windows Catalogue, no problem. I would like to add that I downloaded a freeware program called 7-zip to unzip the cab file to my desktop. To install it, I opened the device manager, clicked on the graphics card (it says VGA standard) then tried to update the driver; you click on "have disk" then go to C:/ and go to where I opened the .cab file. The "find the pilot" is looking for an ."inf" file and I had to unzip the cab file and use 7-Zip to complete the installation. It took me about two weeks to figure all this out! Everything works fine.

    1. Mr. Bach or Mr. Yip,

      How does one use the "have disk" to install the driver software in the .inf and .cat and the software in the B_72960 to accomplish the install?

      Thank you VERY much in advance

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