Why should you care?
- Bug fixes
- Game and 3D application performance improvements
- Full OpenGL, OpenCL, Vulkan, and codec libraries necessary for some games and 3D applications
- Compatibility with the latest Intel Command Center which allows:
- disabling adaptive brightness (can cause annoying flickering)
- disabling panel-self-refresh (can cause glitches on SP4)
- enabling custom 3:2 aspect ratio resolutions for gaming and office applications
- enabling more granular power & performance profiles
- switching between limited range (16-235) and full range (0-255) HDMI color profiles resulting in better colors and contrast on certain monitors
- Intel HD / Iris / Iris Plus 500 / 600 series (Gen 9)
- Intel UHD / Iris Plus Graphics (Gen 11/12)
- 6th – 10th generation GPUs found in SkyLake / Kaby Lake / Kaby Lake-R / Coffee Lake / Coffee Lake-R / Amber Lake / Apollo Lake / Gemini Lake / Whiskey Lake / Cannon Lake / Ice Lake, Comet Lake, and later CPUs
- For Microsoft Surface:
- Surface Pro 4 / Pro 2017 / Pro 6 / Pro 7
- Surface Laptop 1 / Surface Laptop 2 / Laptop 3 (without AMD)
- Surface Book 1 / Surface Book 2 (with or without NVIDIA)
- Surface Go
What is tricky about the install?
Intel generally makes device driver software updates available on a monthly cadence – far more frequently than OEMs such as Surface, HP, Dell, Lenovo, etc. But these updates are generic and not typically supported by OEMs since they haven’t been validated with the specific features on the OEM devices. So customers can either use old officially validated OEM drivers or new unvalidated intel.com drivers.
Intel provides a .exe device driver install package that runs a simple compatibility check. If this compatibility check finds previously installed device driver software that shipped as part of an OEM system (Surface, Dell, HP, Lenovo, etc.) it will refuse to install and direct the user to seek updates directly from the OEM. One reason for this is to set customer expectations on which company is providing support. For an OEM system, it is the OEM that provides support, not Intel. Aniother reason is that the intel.com update has a risk of breaking something since it has not been validated on the OEM system
For customers that need the features/fixes in the newer intel.com driver, the compatibility check is easy to bypass by temporarily installing the Microsoft Basic Display Driver in place of the OEM-provided Intel driver.
This method is 100% reversible via uninstall/roll-back and does not require deleting the old intel.com software.
Disclaimer: intel.com drivers are not officially supported on Surface or any other OEM laptop and there may be compatibility issues. Similar to applying any Windows Update, it would be prudent to run compatibility testing prior to rolling out intel.com drivers on mission-critical systems.
- Download the latest official .exe driver from Intel.com https://downloadcenter.intel.com/search?keyword=Windows+10+DCH+Drivers (most customers can choose the driver at the top of the list.)
- Start – Device Manager
- Navigate to “Display Adapters” and double-click the Intel HD Graphics or Iris Graphics listing
- Driver tab -> Update Driver -> Browse my computer… -> Let me pick…
- Scroll to the bottom of the list and click “Microsoft Basic Display Adapter”
- Click “Next”
- External monitors will switch off and the screen resolution, refresh rate, and color profile may change
- Close Device Manager
- Double-click the .exe driver downloaded from intel.com and follow the prompts
- Install the official Intel Graphics Command Center app from the Microsoft app store. A link will appear on the start menu.