Webcams gets detected by Windows Operating System automatically when you insert it into the USB slot and start working. Some Webcams may have a press to start switch on it. Once you press the switch, your Webcam may get detected by Windows and the necessary Webcam Drivers gets loaded into Windows memory and the Webcam starts working. The Generic Webcam Drivers are already present in your Windows Drivers folder which gets installed. The Generic Webcam drivers can give you basic functionalities of a Webcam. However, if there are more buttons and functions associated with your costly Webcam, then use the Driver disk that came with the Webcam to install the Webcam drivers. It is however recommended that you Download Latest Webcam Drivers from your Webcam manufacturer websites. These drivers will have a lot of bug fixes and new features introduced to your Webcam after you bought it.
WebCam Not Detected by Windows?
If your webcam does not get detected then unplug your Webcam once wait for 5 seconds and re-insert it into the same USB slot. If Windows does not load the Webcam Drivers or detect your webcam, then remove the Webcam and insert into to another USB slot. If this also does not work then try logging off the user and logon to Windows again. If you can then try to restart your Computer. If your Webcam still not detected then Uninstall your Webcam Drivers and once again re-install the Webcam Drivers.
How to Uninstall Webcam Drivers?
To Uninstall Webcam Drivers, you need to press "Windows" Key with "Pause Break" keys together and then select "Device Manager". From device manager select your Webcam and uninstall it. Then Unplug the Webcam and either restart you PC and insert your USB Webcam or reinsert the USB without restarting PC and in the Device Manager select the "Action" tab and use the option "Scan for Hardware Changes" to make Windows Detect your Webcam if it is not detecting it automatically on insertion.
Installing New Webcam Drivers
In the same Device Manager dialog you can also right click on the Webcam and instead of Uninstalling you can use the option of "Update Driver Software". This will make Windows to search for a better Webcam driver if available either in the Windows itself or online. If you have the Webcam Driver CD then insert it into the CD Rom when asked and Windows will select the correct model specific drivers and install them. If you have internet access then visit your Webcam Manufacturer website and download latest Webcam drivers from there and install them.
Automatic WebCam Driver Installation
You can also Download Automatic Driver Download Tool - Driver Detective. It has inbuilt machine intelligence to detect all your computer hardware and locate the necessary drivers from your hardware manufacturer websites. Driver Detective downloads only WHQL Certified Digitally Signed Drivers. This means you save many hours searching for drivers online and avoid downloading webcam drivers from malware websites. You don't even need to find out the model number of your Webcam or any other hardware because Driver Detective has the machine intelligence to read the hardware details and display all these details including the driver versions installed in your computer. When you click Update Drivers button, Driver Detective start downloading the latest driver updates and installs them automatically. Using Driver Detective is the safest way to Download and Install Webcam Drivers in minutes. Updated drivers gets released very regularly almost once a month by reputed hardware manufacturers with newer features and bug fixes reported by users. So ensure that you use Driver Detective at least once a month to ensure that your Webcam captures the best quality images and videos at the maximum frame rates and resolution.
System Restore Before Webcam Driver Installation
There are occassions when you may install a New Webcam Driver that is not meant for your Webcam Model and your webcam fails to work. It is therefore important that you Create a System Restore Point which can be used to revert to your old Webcam Driver if the new driver does not work with your webcam. In fact whenever you are doing any changes to your computer settings or installing a new driver or any software it is always advised that you create a system restore point. This is because software and drivers do at times overwrite the older files which cannot be retrieved unless a backup is made. System Restore is actually a backup of your computer automatically created by Windows operating system and even you can make a System Restore Point before you install Webcam Drivers to be on the safer side.
Webcam Driver History
Today the market is flooded with thousands of Webcam models of various sizes, shapes, resolutions, colors etc. Initially when the webcam came a few years back, there was a big problem of bandwidth because USB 1.0 could not support any great data transfer. This meant that you could only get to small resolution pictures of 320 x 240 pixles and videos with a webcam at a very limited frame rate and that too with the webcam itself optimizing the images as jpegs and even compressing the videos before sending it into your PC/Laptop. But as the USB 2.0 came in the data rate went up many fold and now it was possible to send large pictures and videos at higher frame rates to PC and even without any sort of compression at all. This lead to the Webcams and matching webcam drivers available today that can even capture high megapixle photos to the tune of 15 MP or above and even capture videos in high definition. This combined with the boradband internet speeds has done wonders to the way we communicate online.
Webcam Driver Capabilities
Webcams are no more safe to have permanently connected to your computer because the Webcam drivers can be switched on by a hacker through internet and if the webcam is facing your bathroom or bedroom, then you will be live online. It is a fact and many people have already fallen prey to these pranks by hackers who are running bad websites and even blackmail people after capturing their intimate scenes. These hackers tamper with your webcam drivers and switch on the webcam withou lighting up the LED on the webcam and you have no way of knowing that your webcam is recording you. So ensure that you disconnect your webcam when you do not need it. Read Case Study..
Upgrading Webcam Drivers
Updating your Webcam Drivers is as good as Upgrading your Webcam. A new webcam will cost money. A better solution would be to Update Webcam Drivers which will upgrade your webcam to as good as new because new drivers carry newly introduced features and software included in them and most importantly, the webcam manufacturer gives away the latest drivers free. So instead of going for a new webcam and spending a lot of money, just update new webcam drivers from your manufacturer website and make your webcam work like new again! I recommend you Automatic Driver Download Tool - Driver Detective which will automatically download and install the latest updated webcam drivers and all other drivers for all the hardware installed in your computer without you wasting any time searching for them online. Also, ensure you update drivers at least once every month to keep webcam and all other hardware working at full potential and keep your PC/laptop performance always at peak levels.