I got my hands on an older computer, to be more precise, a DELL LATITUDE D630 (n series) which in fact worked great after I got through a few problems with the drivers. For the configuration it has, you shouldn’t have a problem running an operating system like Windows XP.
I will provide a few details on the drivers you might have a problem with after installing a clean copy of Windows. However, you should keep in mind that it still depends on the system on how your computer will act, and in some cases it might be so easy that nothing else is required after you install the Windows XP, but then again, you wouldn’t be on this page if everything was OK. You might need only one or a part of the drivers I will mention or you will have to address all of them from device manager, as you can see below. It also depends on how you installed your operating system, if you used any custom image or a clean Windows XP copy. The last one will probably let you with a device manager something closely similar to the one below:
First of all, we will need the drivers to correct the problem and install the missing ones.
You should know that there are multiple versions of the same drivers on the DELL website, but the difference is in the version, newer or older, nothing more. You can try to find a newer version if you want, but I did my best to get the latest (that also work).
The “hardest” part comes in finding the drivers, because the installation is as simple as it gets. Just download the correct driver, either from the links I provided you from my site or from the official DELL website and double click to install it. First, it will automatically extract it to a location of your choosing (by default c:\DELL\drivers), and then the autorun will start to install the actual driver by running setup.exe from the extracted files.
If you prefer the manual approach, just cancel the automatic installation after you extracted the files somewhere and navigate to start – run – compmgmt.msc [press enter] – device manager and find the device you would like to add drivers for from the list, right click and update driver. Select “No, not this time” for the automatic Windows Update search for software/driver and hit next and then select install from a list or specific location and next again. The last step is to select “include this location in the search” and browse for the folder where you extracted the driver. A simple next now should do the next steps, while you will have to end the process with a Finish.
We have 3 devices in our first image: Modem, Bluetooth and O2Micro Reader.
For the modem, things will run smoothly, just follow above steps to install the driver manually (using the .inf file) or automatic with the installer.
For the Card Reader, the same steps apply, with the only difference that it is recommended to reboot the system before using it, and if you will choose the automatic method using the autorun after it gets extracted, it will also ask for a reboot when the installation is complete.
For the Bluetooth this is a bit tricky, as depending on your model and software (service pack) installed, it might also give one additional error. However, I did a bit of research and it is nothing important, something related to some incompatibility and untested warnings but it will not affect the use of this feature. Just press OK or ignore, depending on what message you get and proceed further.
I will also mention that a 4th step would be to check the device manager again for unknown devices or yellow question/exclamation marks. Modems have a module that it asks for an audio component which you will have to provide drivers for. In most cases reinstalling the audio driver would fix the problem.
What I encountered was that after you install the modem driver, it will either ask for this driver for the modem audio feature, or it will do some changes on your system that will trigger your audio adapter to ask for a driver and to get an exclamation mark next to it in your device manager.
The quick fix would be to just provide the path to the extracted audio driver files. Using the same steps with “include this location in the search”, you will have to give the path to the drivers for audio or modem (it depends, first try to point to audio extracted files, if it doesn’t find anything, try with the modem extracted files) to get this component installed. If that fails, you didn’t get the correct driver, or you have a different laptop model.
This is how it will be displayed after the installation of the modem, when you will have to fix it as I said above:
For any other particular case I would expect your question as things are not always as easy as you imagine, and in the IT field sometimes a problem doesn’t have the same fix even if it sounds similar.
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