Inside Out

Give unsigned drivers a workout

If you decide to take a chance on an unsigned driver, your best strategy is to back up your data first, install the new driver, and then thoroughly test it right away, without introducing any additional software or drivers. (Windows automatically sets a System Restore point when you install an unsigned driver.) Run every application that's installed on your computer. Try to run a few CPU-intensive and disk-intensive tasks at the same time. Open and save files, especially big, complex ones. Try running disk utilities such as Chkdsk and Defrag . If the new driver is going to cause problems with the hardware and software you currently use, you want to find out immediately after installing it so that you can roll back to your previous configuration with as little hassle as possible

Windows XP allowed users to change the default settings and completely eliminate warnings about unsigned drivers. This option is not available in Windows 7 (nor was it in Windows Vista).

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