Planetary Annihilation

Planetary Annihilation

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SXX Mar 1, 2014 @ 2:24am
How-to: updating ATI/AMD mobility drivers
If you read this how-to it's mean you have laptop with ATI/AMD graphics and you need to update your drivers. In most cases this mean you have to use generic drivers provided by AMD. Unfortunately both AMD and laptop manufacturers did everything to make this process harder.

If you just need new drivers here and now click here: So how can I update my driver?

What is generic drivers? Why should I use them?
Generic driver it's software drivers that made by AMD for reference hardware. Those drivers updated all the time with new functionality and bug fixes.

As you might notice laptop manufacturers don't like to sell standard hardware with generic drivers, instead they sell re-branded hardware and slightly modified drivers/software. Usually all changes is end on some marketing renaming and not affect actual hardware or software.

Obviously laptop manufacturers want to decrease cost of hardware support so usually they drop stop drivers updates in few months after hardware released. Drivers provided by manufacturer slowly become outdated and new game like this one no longer work with them anymore.

This is why most of gamers need to use generic drivers.

Can generic graphics drivers cause issues?
As I noticed before most of laptops have standard hardware so they working great with generic drivers. Still there is number of models that have hardware modifications that make them partially incompatible with generic drivers.

Issues can be caused by incompatibility:
  • Very low screen resolution or incorrect aspect ratio.
  • Impossibility to control back light / luminosity of screen.
  • Screen flickering.
But even if you met one of these issue you'll able to remove generic drivers and everything back to normal after you install laptop manufacturer driver again.

What is the problem with AMD mobile drivers?
Here I want try to explain why exactly such large how-to only required for this graphics card vendor. Other two hardware manufacturers aren't perfect, but still they provide fairly good service for laptop users:
  • Intel. Their integrated graphics built into CPU so it's can't be modified by 3rd-parties. Some laptops manufacturers block installation of generic drivers, but you can easily bypass it. Every laptop with Intel HD graphics can be used with generic drivers, no exceptions here.

  • Nvidia. Mostly every laptops with Nvidia GPU can be updated using generic drivers from official website and it's counted as normal practice. There is only small number of laptops that not supported by generic drivers.

Situation with AMD mobile graphics drivers is worse and there is why:
  • On website only official we to update driver it's "Driver Verification Tool" which return "incompatible" error for mos of laptops with very rare exceptions.
  • Most of time actual mobile driver download links only available from secondary pages.
  • There is never any links to stable WHQL releases, only beta versions.
  • Sometimes website do not contain any links to mobile drivers at all, e.g, today (3 March of 2014).
  • Recently they banned direct download from their site. So even if you have link you can just open it in browser and get driver you need.
Last edited by SXX; Mar 3, 2014 @ 1:36pm
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SXX Mar 2, 2014 @ 4:05pm 
So how can I update my driver?
I'm spend lot time on thinking how I can help everyone and in same time keep this how-to easy and same for players who aren't tech savvy. So I decide to split

Keep in mind: if one method didn't work you'll have to try something else.

So there is 4 ways to update your drivers:
  • Safe and official methods. Those officially supported by AMD or laptop manufacturers and every player can use those without any risk.

  • Non-official methods. Those are not officially supported by AMD.
    Every player can use those on own risk, but those are still fairly safe.

  • Advanced methods. For experienced computer users only.

  • Special methods. Will only work with specific hardware configuration.
Last edited by SXX; Mar 2, 2014 @ 7:51pm
SXX Mar 2, 2014 @ 4:06pm 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Safe and official methods

All methods listed here are totally official and let you update your drivers use officially supported methods. I want to believe that you'll able to get latest drivers using those methods.

Try to use "AMD Driver Autodetect"
1 - Open this page on website:
http://support.amd.com/en-us/download/auto-detect-tool
2 - Download "AMD Driver Autodetect"
3 - Run downloaded file and follow instructions

Try to use "AMD Mobility Radeon™ Driver Verification Tool"
1 - Open page on website:
2 - Download "AMD Mobility Radeon™ Driver Verification Tool".
3 - Run downloaded file and follow instructions

Try to use driver updated built into Steam
1 - Open Steam client window
2 - Check top bar and click on "Steam"
3 - Click on "Check for Video Driver Updates..."
4 - Follow instructions.

Check drivers dates on your laptop manufacturer website
Most of time drivers on laptop manufacturer websites is outdated, but in some rare cases they can be newer. So try to check them:
1 - Find exact model number of your laptop and graphics card.
2 - Check for driver downloads for this model/GPU.
3 - If driver on that website isn't older than 6 months try to install them and check game with them.
Last edited by SXX; Mar 3, 2014 @ 9:46am
SXX Mar 2, 2014 @ 4:07pm 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Non-official methods
Please keep in mind that you using those methods on your own risk.
Usually those not cause any issues, but I still recommend to backup important data before you start update.

Try to manually install driver
1 - Download "14-4-mobility-win7-win8-win8.1-64-dd-ccc-whql.exe" using this link:
http://support.amd.com/en-us/download/mobile?os=Windows%207%20-%2064
For 32-bit OS:
http://support.amd.com/en-us/download/mobile?os=Windows%207%20-%2032
2 - Run it and choose "Express" installation.
3 - If you met any problem within installation process check next method with clean re-install.

Make clean update of video drivers
Clean drivers install step by step:
1 - First you need to open Windows Control Panel.
2 - Open "Uninstall or change a program" menu.
3 - Now you need to make sure you have all those things removed:
  • AMD Catalyst Install Manager. Choose remove all components.
  • ATI/AMD Catalyst.
  • ATI Display Driver. This name used for ATI drivers from 2008-2009
4 - When you removed all drivers restart your laptop.
5 - After restart try to install drivers though any "Official" or "Unofficial" way.
Last edited by SXX; Jun 29, 2014 @ 3:26am
SXX Mar 2, 2014 @ 4:07pm 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Advanced methods
Last edited by SXX; Mar 2, 2014 @ 5:24pm
SXX Mar 2, 2014 @ 4:09pm 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Special methods
Those methods should be only be used if you have specific hardware that can't be updated by using any other way.

Switchable/hybrid graphics: HD4250+HD5XXX or HD4250+HD6XXX
If you have HD4250 onboard graphics as well as discrete no official drivers will work for you. Still there is custom drivers that working fine for many other players:
http://forums.guru3d.com/showthread.php?t=372799

Follow installation instructions carefully and you'll able to successfully update your drivers.
Last edited by SXX; Sep 17, 2014 @ 1:18pm
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Date Posted: Mar 1, 2014 @ 2:24am
Posts: 5