A GPU is essential to play most modern games. And to keep a GPU running well, it must be kept up to date in terms of drivers. The only problem is that many GPU drivers update long before the OS they will run on is ready to handle the new driver version. GPU manufacturers also release beta versions of drivers which are rarely compatible with a desktop OS.
Has the NVIDIA driver update failed?
The driver may not always cause problems, or the problems may not occur for all games but they can cause a Blue Screen of Death (BSoD).
If you’re trying to update an NVIDIA driver, and the update fails and/or you get a BSoD, try the fixes below.
How to Fix the BSoD While Installing NVIDIA Drivers
1. Run driver update from Device Manager
If you’ve manually downloaded a driver and are trying to install it, skip the manual update and use Device Manager instead.
- Open Device Manager.
- Expand Display Adapter.
- Right-click the GPU and select Update Drivers.
- Search online for updates and install the ones that are available.
- Restart the system.
Note: If Device Manager cannot find a driver update, and there is an update available on the NVIDIA website, don’t install it. Your system isn’t ready for the update and forcefully installing may destabilize the system.
2. Roll back driver update
If you’ve installed a driver update but are now unable to boot to the desktop without getting a BSoD, you will have to roll back the driver update.
- Boot the system and interrupt the boot process by holding down the power button.
- Repeat this 3-5 times until you see the Troubleshoot menu.
- Go to Advanced Options>Startup Repair>Restart.
- Boot to Safe mode.
- Once in Safe Mode, open Device Manager.
- Expand Display Adapters.
- Double-click the GPU and go to the Driver tab.
- Click the Roll Back Driver button.
- Allow the driver to roll back to an older version and restart the system.
3. Update driver with NVIDIA GeForce
You can try updating the driver with the NVIDIA GeForce app. It is built for this very purpose and will handle both download and installation.
- Download and install the NVIDIA GeForce app from the official NVIDIA website.
- Run the app and go to the Drivers tab.
- Click Check for updates.
- Download and install driver updates that are available.
4. Update Windows 10
One of the main reasons a GPU driver causes problems on Windows 10 is if Windows 10 is not up to date. Make sure you’re running the latest version of the OS and that there are no pending updates.
- Open the Settings app with the Win+I keyboard shortcut.
- Go to Update & Security.
- Select the Windows Update tab.
- Click Check for updates.
- Download and install available updates.
NVIDIA’s drivers are normally stable however, they can cause problems at times. Check online forums to see if a particular update is causing problems for other users. If it is, roll back the driver and wait for a patch from NVIDIA. Don’t try to force install a new driver for an older NVIDIA GPU. Newer drivers normally do not run well with older chips. Let Windows 10 handle driver updates for the GPU instead and it will keep the system stable.