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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    I recenlty had to reinstall XP. The drivers for my Nvidia GeForce 2 MX/MX 400 were "automatically" installed by XP. The driver is listed as version 5.01.2001.1240 dated 7/1/2001 and digitally signed by MS XP Publisher. Everything seems to be working just fine. When I go to Windows Update, MS is recommending an updated Nvidia driver dated August 30,2001 with version 1.5.2.0 I don't understand the vesion numbering since the older version seems to have a higher number. Should I install the "updated" driver?
    I had installed the latest driver from Nvidia's website for XP and it seemed to slow down my system rather than speeding it up. It also caused frequent crashes necessitating a reboot, so I'm leary about updating anything from Nvidia. Any help is appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    Which version did you get from Nvidia? My system (with an older TNT card) was significantly slowed with the 40.72 release but regained speed with the 41.09 release data 2002/12/03. Have not had any probelms with the crashes or stops either. Also, if you have the 41.09 release installed you may want to try to slow down the hardware acceleration a notch if they seem to be causing problems. You do have to be careful as each release from Nvidia seems to bring its own set of adventures to some subset of users.

    Joe
    Joe

  3. #3
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    Unlike Joe I haven't had any problems with the 4x.xx series of Nvidia drivers. I do know that the stock drivers that ship with XP are not nearly fast enough for my use, and that the ones on Windows Update seem a little out of touch. As a general rule I don't allow Windows Update to update device drivers for me, opting instead to obtain them from the vendor.

    For the sake of reference, Nvidia's driver scheme works like along these lines:

    <UL><LI>10.xx = 1.0.5.9 etc
    <LI>20.xx = 2.3.5.9 etc
    <LI>30.xx = 3.0.8.2 etc
    <LI>40.xx = 4.1.0.9 etc[/list]With each successive increase, there are performance enhancements for the newer generation of video cards they manufacture. The currently available drivers from Nvidia are WHQL candidates, which in the simplest terms means that XP won't throw up an ugly dialog box threatening system instability if you use them, if they are WHQL certified. Also, Nvidia drivers are 'uinified' which means that one driver release works for all of their video cards. I don't know any valid reason to use anything but the 40.xx series of Detonator drivers; they offer significant performance enhancements.

    My advice? Ignore what's on Windows Update, and run, do not walk, to Nvidia's website and get the latest Detonators. Set a system restore point before installing them, and you should be safe. XP will back up your current druiver and allow you to roll back if you have a problem. Alternately...if your PC is working OK, and you don't want to take chances, don't fix what's not broken. I think the "chances" have a very small chance of causing you problems.
    -Mark

  4. #4
    Uranium Lounger viking33's Avatar
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    Not exactly sure about MX400, but I have NVida GeForce GTS card in my system and I have the latest drivers dated 9/27/02, V 4.0.7.2. According to NVida, all of the GeForce cards take the same set of drivers in one download and the particular drivers for each card are installed depending on the hardware installed. I have always updated the NVida set as opposed to the MS ones and have had no troubles with them.
    I think the latest ones give you more choices in the particular settings for their card. Don't know if I have noticed any real faster response, but the choices
    do make a noticeable difference in video quality. Again, it all depends on how you set up your preferences.

    Bob
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  5. #5
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    I don't want to beat a dead horse but.... I do not play any games. Is there any other reason to update to the latest Nvidia driver. Frankly I did install the latest series 40 and found that when I moved windows there was a "trailing image" It seemed to me that my speed slowed considerably. Are there significant adjustments that need to made on their panel or are the defaults satisfactory? Thanks for your patience.

  6. #6
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    I won't tell the horse if you don't. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15> For what it's worth, I rarely if ever play games on my PC either, but I maintain the most current drivers when possible. There are several advantages to having up to date drivers. Most often you will have better response from your system with them. They will allow you to run at higher resolutions (sometimes!) and refresh rates. Drivers are updated to get the best performance out of the GPU (graphics processing unit) and to quash bugs in the code. 99 times out of 100 you will discover that any software or hardware troubleshooting will suggest you obtain and install the latest drivers for your video card (help desks also do this regularly).

    Your trailing image doesn't sound familiar to me. Do you mean that artifacts are left on the screen, or that there is a trailing effect when you drag windows around? Some things I can suggest are disabling items such as "Show window contents while dragging." Also, going to the advanced properties and resetting the defaults for anti-aliasing/anisotropic filtering can help.

    You may also want to try a slightly earlier revision of the drivers (Detonators are currently at version 41.09). I once had an update screw up my video overlay, which in layman's terms means DVDs didn't play back. That was using the 3.0.8.2 drivers, and a successive release of the 30.xx detonators fixed the problem. It's something to try. However, if you have acceptable performance from your video system and are comfortable with the status quo, I can't see any compelling reason to upgrade just because there's a newer revision.

    HTH,
    -Mark

  7. #7
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    Re: Nvidia drivers (XP Home SP1)

    Thank you for your explanation. Since I'm not haviing problems and programs and windows open rather speedily, I think I'll leave well enough alone and stay with the drivers boxed with XP. For the record, what I mean by trailing images is that there is a trailing effect (which disappears) when I move windows around. Since I'm not updating at this time, I guess it doesn't matter. Thanks again

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