Windows 10: How can I disable automatic driver / device installation?

  1. Posts : 11
    win 10 pro 64-bit
       06 Aug 2015 #1

    How can I disable automatic driver / device installation?

    Hi. This is not exactly win 10 specific question, i had same problem in win 7, but now that i'm on win 10, that problem is still there.

    here's what's going on:
    I have high-end gaming PC with GTX 980 and 4k monitor and 1080p monitor as secondary.
    4k Monitor is connected via DisplayPort and other monitor is using HDMI
    Both of those monitors have built-in speakers (actually i don't think 1080p monitor has speakers)
    But here's the problem, windows 10 keeps automatically installing HDMI audio drivers and 50% of the time when i boot my system, all my software defaults to the stupid HDMI sound.
    This is extremely annoying and i'm about to pull my hair out over this. All my media players default to monitor audio, even tho windows does not select it as "default device".
    Also even tho other monitor doesn't have speakers, system still thinks that the monitor has speakers and sets it as audio device.

    Also when i record gameplays using shadowplay or other recorder, lot of times there's no audio on videos, because screen recorders also default to that dumb hdmi audio.
    it's really annoying me, i can't be bothered to check audio every time i do something.

    I really need a way to tell windows 10 to STOP doing that.

    Here's what i've done so far:

    1. under playback devices, i have DISABLED both of the monitors as playback devices.
    2. I have tried uninstalling + disabling drivers for both monitors in "device manager"
    3. i used local group policy to force windows not to install drivers (gpedit.msc > administrative templates > system > device installation), then i grabbed the group ID from device manager and entered it there to prevent windows from installing drivers for any audio groups.

    After step 3, drivers were not installed, but windows still shows both monitors in "playback devices", only difference is that in device manager it says that this device does not have drivers installed, but they're still showing up in "playback devices", therefore all my software is STILL able to use them as playback and some of my software, like winamp, still defaults to them.

    Edit: forgot to mention, that if I disable both of them in playback devices, windows automatically re-enables them at some point. probably at boot, but i can't be bothered to check every few seconds, i just want windows to STOP trying to tell me what's best, i like my Asus STRIX 7.1 headset + 7.1 Hi-Fi home theater speaker system, i don't need some tiny jurassic stereo speakers lol.

    I want to punch whoever made this feature. I mean .. what kind of an caveman would buy high-end gaming PC with GTX 980 + 4k monitor and NOT have a proper sound card + headset? Did those low-brainers in microsoft seriously think that anyone using high-end gaming PC, would like to use HDMI as primary audio? that's just ridiculous!

    Please help me get rid of this annoying problem. I think my only option is to force windows to think that i'm not using HDMI so it won't even detect my monitors as audio devices, is that possible?
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 (duh)
       06 Aug 2015 #2

    First, when posting about hardware issues, it is in your best interest to identify the hardware, since other users might have already found specific solutions. Don't miss out!

    mordax said: View Post
    using HDMI
    That's your problem, right there.

    If your "1080p monitor" does not have DVI, I am 100% confident it's a piece of crap and not worth the space on your desk. But if it does have DVI, please do trow away that HDMI cable and use the proper computer connection.

    Your "4k monitor" should have an option in it's menu for audio, search for a turn off feature there.

    Coming back to Windows 10 being a problem, I think you are barking up the wrong tree. I actually admire it's resilience! What's the right tree? Might be Nvidia driver. Specifically, audio support. So please perform a clean custom install of nvidia setup (use DDU), unselecting HD Audio Driver. If that won't fix it, you might need to unselect Geforce Experience, too, since it adds a virtual audio driver (you've mentioned you use shadowplay so this might be a no-go, but worth a try; also, OBS).
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3. Posts : 11
    win 10 pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter
       10 Aug 2015 #3

    sry for double post, cant find delete. it happened cause of network lag.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  4. Posts : 120
    Windows 10 (duh)
       11 Aug 2015 #4

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    11 Aug 2015 #5

    ermm just install it correctly and set the default when you have all drivers correctly installed. it shouldnt loose the information on boot up. and yes, its a bit twatty feature that HDMI (or in that case any digital audio connector) goes before the analog ones / soundcards. just set all up and mark the priority correctly and you should be good to go

    edit - oh and do NOT delete anything, just makes it worse. just set all up, make sure all plugged and then do the switch to a correct audio device/s. do not disable or remove anything!
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    11 Aug 2015 #6

    In regards to disabling auto-updates for devices, go into This PC>Properties>Advanced system settings

    Click on the Hardware tab>Device installation settings>No let me choose what to do>Never install driver software from Windows Update

    This is sometimes necessary as newer ones 'break' older legacy drivers and cause adverse effects on the device. Causing the user to roll back to previous drivers.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7. Posts : 11
    win 10 pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter
       20 Aug 2015 #7

    neomatter said: View Post
    In regards to disabling auto-updates for devices, go into This PC>Properties>Advanced system settings

    Click on the Hardware tab>Device installation settings>No let me choose what to do>Never install driver software from Windows Update

    This is sometimes necessary as newer ones 'break' older legacy drivers and cause adverse effects on the device. Causing the user to roll back to previous drivers.
    Thx, thumbs up for this. I didn't know about this option in win 10.
    Exactly what I was looking for.

    Everyone else can have a middle finger for trolling me and saying I have shit hardware or setup. See? Was it so hard to leave a reply that actually helps?
    it IS win 10 problem and it CAN be disabled, there's no need to go full retard mode and start yanking out your HDMI wires or breaking monitors by ripping out speakers or whatever lel.

    @batlhilz i DID set it all up, upon random boots it just decides to default to one of the monitors, it's completely random. I can simply restart my PC like 10 times without touching any settings and it keeps changing them on its own. at some point it defaults to 4k monitor connected via displayport and at some point it defaults to HDMI monitor that doesn't even have speakers.

    Anyway i hope this issue will be solved now that i know how to turn off that stupid automatic update. it's really annoying if you ask me.
    I guess 10 years from now and kids don't even know what driver means anymore, if you tell them your PC needs drivers, they probably think that you should ask your friends to come to your place and drive your PC around the room with sticks and steering wheels.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  8. TairikuOkami's Avatar
    Posts : 3,417
    10.6 Home 1809 x64
       20 Aug 2015 #8

    Try this (I guess someone should write a tutorial, anyone but me).
      My ComputerSystem Spec


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