Removing and Wiping Drivers GuideGuest_Jim_* - May 21, 2013
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Like many programs, drivers will leave some remnants on your computer after being uninstalled, and these remnants can cause complications, so removing them prior to a new install is not a bad idea. It is not always necessary though and only you can decide if it is best for your scenario.
On the previous page I concluded by saying you can wait to restart your computer after the drivers' uninstaller has run. This is because it is this time I will run the program Driver Fusion to wipe what is left of the driver from my computer. If you do a search for driver wiping programs you may come across Driver Sweeper. This solution has been used and recommended by many, but had some issues. In response, the original developers decided to rewrite how it worked, but in the process they added new functionality. To reflect the new capabilities of the software, they gave it the new name of Driver Fusion. There is a free and paid version of this software, but the free version is all you need for this.
When you open Driver Fusion you will be greeted by the 'Driver Inspection' page, which lists the different drivers you may want it to scan for. Just click on the items in the list in order to select them, and clicking on multiple items will select those multiple items. Pressing the 'Analyze' button will have the program start searching for what remains of the drivers you told it to look for, and what it finds will be listed for you to inspect. It finds files, folders, and registry entries, each of which you can choose to leave on your computer by clicking the appropriate checkbox on the side of the list. It may be a good idea to check this list before pressing the 'Delete' button because it may find something you do not want deleted, such as files that have been extracted for when you install new drivers. You can see I have unchecked the "C:\NVIDIA" directory in the screenshot, and I did so specifically for that reason.
Once you press delete, the selected entries in the list will be deleted after Driver Fusion has made a backup of them, in case something should go wrong. You can access these backups through the 'management' tab along the top of the program, and then clicking the 'RESTORE' button.
Very often there are some files that cannot be deleted while Windows is running, which Driver Fusion will tell you. In order to remove these files, you will have to restart your computer. This is why I suggested waiting to restart your computer after uninstalling the drivers; because you will likely have to restart it at this point as well. By waiting, you only have to restart once during this process.
Once your computer boots back up, the driver you decided to remove should be completely wiped from your system, along with any potentially corrupted files associated with it.