Ensure you reference your service manual before carrying out upgrades:
The most recommended upgrade for this system is a Solid State Drive, here is my affiliate link to Crucial here. If purchasing a SSD or Memory Upgrade please use these links as I will get a tiny bit of commission which will help fund my guides.
SSD Drive Upgrade
This system supports 2 GB of RAM (2×1 GB Modules) however 4 GB RAM (2×2 GB Modules) has been reported to work. This can also be purchased using the affiliate link above.
It is recommended to install Windows 10 on this system see Windows OEM FAQs and Downloads. The Windows Vista OEM or Windows XP Product Key won't be compatible with Windows 10 Installation Media however you can run Windows 10 Unlicensed. Windows 10 will have most of the system drivers required inbuilt however you can install the Windows 7 Drivers if you have any unknown Devices in the Device Manager.
Drivers and Downloads for Windows 7
System Utilities (Windows 7 Only)
Video (Windows 7 Only)
Dell Wireless Cards
Audio (Windows 7 Only)
Install the Registry Edit and then the Audio Driver.
Open up Notepad or Notepad++, copy and paste the above and save the file (as all types) ending with the extension .reg. Once done right click the reg file and run.
Add the entries to your registry before installing the Audio Driver.
7 thoughts on “Inspiron 1501 – Windows 7 and 10”
Most of these worked well for me. I had to play with compatibility to get the BIOS update to work. The link for the video driver is bad. I was able to choose manually from that link though. Everything else worked great. My WEI is 3.1 with 4gb memory. I recommend for anyone else trying to put Win7 on an Inspiron 1501
Yeah unfortunately AMD made some edits to the driver download and so the legacy driver is no longer present as a direct link.
Probably driver installation via the device manager is the best although I was going to link to DriverHeaven Mobility Modder:
There is also the following driver version 8.561.0.0 on the Microsoft Update Catalog for pci\ven_1002&dev_5975&subsys_0507107b
Regarding the BIOS update, I think it just needs to be saved to the desktop and run as an administrator.
I was having an issue with Quickset where it would not show the volume bar moving up or down.
When I adjusted the volume, the Quickset volume meter would show and the volume would increase/decrease, but the green meter would not show any incremental changes or even what the level was, only a solid full green bar.
Got it sorted by finding the quickset.exe file, after installation, and changing the compatibility to Win XP SP3 and running as admin.
Now it works as it should and using Dell Quickset v8.3.17 (A51)! Yay!
(even went into the registry and adjusted the x/y coordinates so the brightness/volume meters and the Wireless on/off indicator are nicely centered on my screen now)
Thanks for the great information you've made available. It was a big help.
I need drivers for my Dell Inspirion 1501
Drivers for Pioner DVD RW DVR-K 17 RS ATA for windows 7.
I can not to find it for a long time.
Drivers for optical drives are inbuilt into Windows. Dell only offered firmware updates for optical drives. In my experience applying these on this vintage of model can be problematic and lead to a non-functional drive so I don't list them.
Dusted off ye ol' reliable first laptop 1501, she says hello, after my backup l'top HP met it's maker. I found a BIOS patched to include product key for win 7 dell oem disk, worked like a charm. Thank you to the genius that went to all that work so I did not need to. Slapped 2X2GB RAM from the HP in here, the system seems to acknowledge only 3GB? I tried inserting the HP's processor (it only fit if I rotated 90 degrees), but it did not work. I am not surprised, nor disappointed, as it was a long shot with the possibility of only marginal improvement. My first hurdle was a freaky keyboard, but win update (eventually) took care of that. Most drivers from the dell site labeled as win vista work fine. Synaptics touchpad was behaving poorly, but now seems fine. I am not sure if that was a hardware glitch or other: un/replugging it from/to the motherboard *seems* to have fixed it. I have let windows take care of drivers that don't seem to need my immediate attention. Battery charging issues are the current tragedy d'jour. Anyone else experience trouble, here? Not sure quickset is necessary, or even advisable. I am going to try the dell "system software", next….
Personally I wouldn't recommend a modded BIOS its extremely risky as it has the potential to brick the system. Also I would recommend taking the free upgrade to Windows 10 via the 10130 .iso: