Driver freedom

Windows 10 devices can now install Intel’s GPU drivers without restrictions

You can now install generic GPU drivers from Intel on OEM devices running Windows 10.

Intel Graphics update assistant

Intel has announced that devices from OEM manufacturers (such as HP, Dell, Asus, etc.) can now install GPU drivers without the need to wait from device makers to release custom versions of drivers.

Currently, if you’re using an outdated driver, manufacturers will block you from installing a generic update downloaded from the Intel website because the device is using a custom graphics driver and the generic version isn’t validated for your device.

The problem with this approach is that usually device manufacturers take a long time to make drivers available, and many other times, they don’t even maintain custom drivers.

However, Intel now reveals that is has change its driver distribution policy allowing anyone to install generic GPU drivers on Windows 10 without having to wait until the next release of a customized version of the controller.

In other words, if you’re using a laptop or desktop from a known brand, you can now upgrade the driver to a newer version with new enhancements, features, and fixes without the manufacturer validation.

“As of this release, Intel Graphics DCH drivers are now unlocked to upgrade freely between Computer Manufacturer (OEM) drivers and the Intel generic graphics drivers on Download Center.” Intel also explains: “your OEM customizations [will] remain intact with each upgrade and the OEMs can maintain customizations separately via […] Windows Update.”

The only caveat is that the restriction lift is only available for computers using the 6th Generation Intel Processor platform or higher.

Although this new approach will give users more freedom to upgrade drivers as soon as new updates become available, Intel warns that using generic graphics drivers are meant for testing purposes only “to temporarily test new features, game enhancements, or check if an issue is resolved. Once testing is complete Intel advises reinstalling the OEM driver until they validate it and release their own version.”