Tip of the Week: Disabling Windows Device Driver Updates

Blog Post created by guy_wettstein on May 23, 2015

There may be cases where a driver update can have unintended consequences. On occasion you may back rev the driver to restore functionality, but then later find that Windows Update has dutifully updated the driver for you again the next time it detects an update is available.

Turning off automatic updates would prevent the problem, but your IT policies may require Windows Update be set to automatic. Fortunately, there is a distinction made between device driver and OS updates so you can leave automatic updates enabled for the OS updates and disable them for device driver updates..

To disable device driver updates, do the following (procedure applies to Windows 7):

  1. Open the Devices and Printers folder by pressing the Start button, right clicking on Devices and Printers, and selecting Open.
  2. In the top row of the window you should see a computer icon that has your systems name on it. Right click on it, and select Device Installation Settings.
  3. Select No; Let me choose what to do, then select Never install driver software from Windows Update.
  4. Select Save Changes, and close the window.


OS updates will continue to install automatically, but device driver updates will not. You still have the option of installing these by running Windows Update manually and selecting the drivers you want to update, just be careful not to pick the one that breaks your system.

This setting applies to all device drivers. There does not appear to be a way to target a specific device driver and prevent it from updating while allowing others.