Driver Booster v4.2.0

A Full Review of Driver Booster, a Free Driver Updater Tool

Screenshot of Driver Booster v4.0.3 in Windows 8
Driver Booster v4.0.3.

Driver Booster is a free driver updater program for Windows that can automatically check for outdated drivers for your hardware on a routine basis, and even download and update all the drivers with one click!

Every driver package is downloaded directly through the program and batch downloading makes it easy to download multiple device driver updates with one click.

Tip: After choosing the DOWNLOAD NOW button from the download page, be sure to pick the link called "Softpedia Secure Download (US)" or "External mirror 1" to get the free version (don't choose the red link).

Download Driver Booster
[Softpedia.com | Download & Install Tips]

Note: This review is of Driver Booster version 4.2.0. Please let me know if there's a newer version I need to review.

More About Driver Booster

Driver Booster pulls off almost everything I'd want a driver updater that I was designing myself to do:

  • Works with Windows 10, Windows 8, Window 7, Windows Vista, and Windows XP
  • Hundreds of thousands of device drivers are supported through Driver Booster
  • Definitions for those devices update automatically and frequently, meaning there's no need to manually update the program every time a new driver is added to the database
  • A driver's version number, size, and release date are clearly displayed next to each driver that needs updated, helping to identify the size and age of a new driver before it gets updated
  • The list of outdated drivers can be exported to a TXT file, which includes the device name, class, vendor, current and available version, hardware ID, and compatible ID
  • Enabling Silent Installation will hide installation windows and other popups to make installation as easy and quick as possible
  • The list of drivers found in Driver Booster are labeled according to the severity of the update, with Extremely Old and Very Old as two examples
  • Drivers that are already up to date are also shown, but in a separate section from the outdated ones
  • You can search through all the drivers that Driver Booster finds
  • The number of days since you last scanned with Driver Booster is shown on the main screen
  • Driver Booster also scans for outdated game components, like Adobe Flash Player and Microsoft DirectX Runtime
  • Toolkit is a section of Driver Booster that includes some tools for fixing sound errors, fixing network failures, cleaning unplugged devices, and fixing bad resolution by cleaning up driver data

Driver Booster Pros & Cons

As you can probably already tell by the size of the Pro section below, there's little not to like about Driver Booster:

Pros:

  • Installs quickly
  • Lists updated drivers as well as outdated ones
  • Supports batch driver downloads
  • Can automatically create a restore point before a driver is updated
  • Able to ignore a device so no updates are shown
  • Includes an option to remove installation data after an update so the hard drive can remain free of clutter
  • Can automatically scan for new updates on a daily, weekly, biweekly, or monthly basis
  • Option to only show drivers that pass WHQL testing
  • Downloads are performed from directly inside the program and not through a browser
  • No limit on the number of drivers that can be downloaded and updated

Cons:

  • Must have an Internet connection even to properly scan for driver updates

My Thoughts on Driver Booster

If you're looking for an easy to use driver updater, Driver Booster is likely your best bet. In all the time I've used the program I've never had any issues with downloads, and installs have never caused issues like BSOD errors or bricked hardware.

I really like that updates found in Driver Booster aren't launched in a web browser and then required to be downloaded manually like other driver updater tools I've used. That's far too much of a hassle and can sometimes lead to clicking the incorrect download link.

Above, I mentioned that Driver Booster is unable to scan correctly unless an active Internet connection is established. It will look like it's working, but without a network connection it will simply scan without using any factual update information, which unfortunately results in displaying an incorrect set of updates (or none at all).

Because there's also a professional version of Driver Booster, some features are limited in the free version. For example, when I compared the free and full version, I found driver updates in the professional program that the free software didn't find, which is too bad. Also, features like auto-downloading and auto-backing up drivers isn't an option in the free version.

Download Driver Booster
[Softpedia.com | Download & Install Tips]

There are two download links for Driver Booster at Softpedia's website. Be sure to click the one that says "Softpedia Secure Download (US)" or "External mirror 1" to avoid trying to purchase the full version of the program.