The drivers on your computer are the individual pieces of software that interface with the hardware. Your computer has hundreds of drivers, all made by different manufacturers. Any updates to drivers are supposed to improve compatibility, boost performance, and fix bugs, but they can be difficult to keep track of.
That’s where a driver updater program can help. It scans your computer and checks for out-of-date drivers. If any are found, the driver update software can download the updates and install them.
- Want to try Driver Booster 8? Download it for free here
Plans and pricing
Driver Booster 8 PRO costs $22.95/year ($1.81/month) for three PCs. Alternatively, you can purchase it as part of a bundle that includes IObit Uninstaller Pro, Smart Defrag Pro, and Protected Folder for $24.95/year ($2.90/month). We’ve reviewed these other software utilities favorably in the past, so it may be worth paying the extra $2 per year.
You can download a trial version of Driver Booster from the IObit website. Besides expiring after 14 days, the trial version lacks the option to automatically update drivers when your computer is idle. You are also limited to updating two drivers per day, a significant constraint if you don’t plan on buying the full version. If you want to try out the PRO version, it has a 60-day money-back guarantee.
Driver Booster’s main feature is called Update. It scans your computer for outdated drivers and lists any available updates. You can then install all the updates at once or select them individually. Besides drivers, the software also checks for updates to common components used by games, such as Adobe AIR and Microsoft Silverlight.
The PRO version of Driver Booster 8 can be set to run a periodic check of your machine for required driver updates and automatically download them as necessary.
The software includes a Backup and Restore feature that you can use if you’re worried about testing out a new, cutting-edge driver. With one click, you can back up all your system’s drivers or restore them from a backup. Built into the software is a manager for your System Restore points, where you can create, remove, and restore your computer’s state.
Interface and in use
Driver Booster 8 has a modern, skinnable clean interface that’s easy to use. But if you don’t plan on installing IObit’s other utilities, you may find the persistent upselling of these products grating. You’re asked whether you want to install other IObit products during installation, and many of the prominent buttons in Driver Booster 8, such as Smart Game Booster, System Optimize, and Software Updater, do little but invite you to buy more software.
That said, you will find useful settings in the menu. You can choose whether to scan for Game Components and/or device drivers and whether you want the latest drivers or the most stable ones. You can set a folder’s Driver Booster uses for downloaded drivers and backups and choose devices to be ignored.
When performing a driver update, the software will first make a System Restore point and back up your current drivers. There’s an option to reboot your computer automatically when driver installation is complete.
In total, Driver Booster 8 found 30 outdated drivers and 12 outdated game components on our two testing machines. This is the highest number of missing drivers reported in our testing, suggesting that Driver Booster 8 has an extensive database of drivers and can accurately recognize old drivers.
Driver Booster has a small FAQ section on the IObit website. There’s an up-to-date online user manual too, which has around 20 well-written pages on the salient features of the product.
Support is available via contact form, and in our testing, we received replies to our queries within 12 hours. IObit also has a community support forum, so you can turn to other Driver Booster 8 users if you have a problem.
Driver Reviver from ReviverSoft is a suitable alternative to Driver Booster 8. It’s focused on driver updates and doesn’t include any of the additional system management tools that Driver Booster does, but it has a solid driver scan-and-update function.
Driver Genius is also worth checking out, as all of its features are available in the free trial. With the free version of Driver Booster, you’re limited to installing two drivers per day, but Driver Genius lets you install all your driver updates at once.
As a driver update software solution, Driver Booster 8 excels. It found more outdated drivers on our test machines than other driver update tools, and it’s easy to update them with a click of a button. It goes beyond most competitors by including an automatic driver update service, offline driver updater, and a solid driver backup solution.
However, the trial version is severely restricted, and many of the features require the installation of other IObit software, so we don’t recommend it if you’re just looking for a free tool for occasionally updating your drivers. But if you manage an office full of PCs or want to always have the latest drivers on your PC, Driver Booster 8 is an excellent choice.
- We've also highlighted the best driver update software