Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


What is the best way to backup installed device drivers?

  1. #1


    India
    Posts : 15
    Windows 8.1

    What is the best way to backup installed device drivers?


    What is the best and trusted way to backup installed 3rd party device drivers (and software too, I guess it's possible) so that I can reinstall them on a fresh windows installation?

    UPDATE: I would be truly grateful if someone could suggest me a way to save at least all current settings of installed windows environment and settings of all softwares?
    Last edited by 1gouravgg; 21 Dec 2014 at 10:06.

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    Hello 1gouravgg, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    I find that saving the downloaded driver installation files from the device or PC manufacturer to a drive other than the one Windows is installed on a great way to back them up. This way they are quickly available to install as needed.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3



    Trying to Sith things out
    Bamberg Germany
    Posts : 2,290
    Windows 10 Pro 64 bit


    Quote Originally Posted by Brink View Post
    Hello 1gouravgg, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    I find that saving the downloaded driver installation files from the device or PC manufacturer to a drive other than the one Windows is installed on a great way to back them up. This way they are quickly available to install as needed.
    I have to second Brink there... when I download any kind of installer, I always save to downloads first(instead of running in temp)check with AV for hidden crap-installers, then install, after getting everything set-up, and there are no problems, after a couple of days I move the installer package to a external HDD.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4


    San Jose - California
    Posts : 2,847
    8.1x64PWMC Ubuntu14.04x64 MintMate17x64


    In addition to the above. You can also download: Double Driver 4.1 Download - TechSpot to backup currently installed drivers.
    Unzip and right click on dd.exe and run as Admin
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    India
    Posts : 15
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by topgundcp View Post
    In addition to the above. You can also download: Double Driver 4.1 Download - TechSpot to backup currently installed drivers.
    Unzip and right click on dd.exe and run as Admin
    just installed..thanks for the good suggestion. can I anyhow save settings of windows and software too?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Posts : 1,875
    Windows 10 Pro Prieview x64


    Lots of your windows settings can be backed up with OneDrive (if you sign on using a Microsoft account). Sync Your Settings - Turn On or Off in Windows 8

    Programs are a bit more involved. You can't copy program settings on an individual basis without analyzing each program separately and finding where it stores information.

    Your best bet is probably to make a backup once everything is working OK. Either of everything (using Macrium Reflect FREE Edition - Information and download or similar) or making a custom refresh point using recimg Refresh Windows 8 - Create and Use Custom Recovery Image

    A full backup lets you restore your system as it was when you created it. A custom refresh points lets you use the Windows 8 refresh feature to restore your programs and settings without deleting your user files (documents and so on) that have changed since you created the image.

    You could of course do all 3.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #7


    San Jose - California
    Posts : 2,847
    8.1x64PWMC Ubuntu14.04x64 MintMate17x64


    My suggestion above is just to backup all the drivers currently installed in your PC so in case you need to re-install Windows, you can restore them in one sweep instead of re-installing one by one.

    I am not aware of any software that will save settings for installed third party software. What I usually do is after Windows installation + installed Applications. I just use: Macrium Reflect Free to make a backup image of Drive C: which includes Windows OS + Installed Applications in case I need to restore so I don't have to re-install anything from scratch.

    Depending on how fast your PC is and also separate your personal data to another drive. Using Macrium is quite fast to backup.

    Here's a short video on how to backup your Windows OS + all Installed software. It will work with all versions of Windows:

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #8


    Posts : 2,690
    Windows 3.1 > Windows 10


    I just create a "drivers" folder on my "C" drive and then type this into a command prompt(admin)

    Dism /Online /Export-Driver /Destination:C:\Drivers

    Then you can copy them to a usb stick.. setup windows and then use device manager to update the system drivers..

    I just inject them into the install.wim prior to running windows setup..
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #9


    I always save all my downloads to a download folder (which is located under my Documents folder), then install from there. That provides my security programs better opportunities to ensure the download is clean instead of installing directly from the Internet (where IMO, you take your chances). Good security practice but not a good backup practice.

    Everyone must assess their own situation and decide what is more important to them! Is it your drivers and downloaded programs which you can relatively easily download again (the latest version too!) from the makers' sites? Or your personal documents, photos, emails, contacts, calendar/appointment scheduler, password safe, tax records, school and work or personal business projects that you can NOT simply download (or recreate) again?

    My personal data files are worth MUCH MORE in time, money and emotions to me than a silly driver or even OS which I can easily re-install.

    I have two backup policies. First, I repurposed my trusty old XP system as my backup server/NAS. This sits down in the dungeon (a dark corner in my basement) and I regularly just drag and drop my entire Documents folder (which includes the latest driver downloads) to this old XP system. If someone has an old XP system I recommend doing this. Just ensure you block access to and from the Internet for this system in your router's admin menu - keep it local access only.

    My second backup policy is a full image. And I keep several copies including one on that XP system, but also one off site. Why off site? Because what are you going to do if your home floods, burns down, is blown away by tornado/hurricane? Or if you sustain a direct lightning strike or worse, a badguy breaks into your home and steals all your computers and your attached storage/backup drives? Then how are you going to recover those personal files?

    For years, I kept an image disk off-site in my bank safe deposit box. Definitely safe there, but not accessible 24/7/365. Now I keep an image disk at a nearby relative's house.

    If I trusted the cloud, I would put an image out there. But I don't trust the cloud to keep my personal data private, or accessible.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #10


    India
    Posts : 15
    Windows 8.1


    Quote Originally Posted by topgundcp View Post
    My suggestion above is just to backup all the drivers currently installed in your PC so in case you need to re-install Windows, you can restore them in one sweep instead of re-installing one by one.

    I am not aware of any software that will save settings for installed third party software. What I usually do is after Windows installation + installed Applications. I just use: Macrium Reflect Free to make a backup image of Drive C: which includes Windows OS + Installed Applications in case I need to restore so I don't have to re-install anything from scratch.

    Depending on how fast your PC is and also separate your personal data to another drive. Using Macrium is quite fast to backup.

    Here's a short video on how to backup your Windows OS + all Installed software. It will work with all versions of Windows:

    I just tried to install Macrium Reflect and it is asking for a 400MB file "reflect installer and pe components" to download! can I takeover that file via IDM anyhow? my bandwidth is not so fast.
    After backing-up the system can window restore this image by its own or i have to install macrium again to restore that image?
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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What is the best way to backup installed device drivers?
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