Graphics Card/Display Adapter Not Working (Error Code 10.):
AMD Graphics Driver Keeps Reverting back to Faulty Version.
- Sony Vaio SVE
- Windows 8.0 OS
- Intel Core i7 CPU
- Graphics: AMD Radeon HD 7750/7760M
Recently, out of sheer curiosity, I installed a couple of diagnostic tools onto my laptop. Now one of these, I’m not sure which, started messing around with the drivers on my computer. The next time I rebooted my laptop, I noticed something strange. The brightness was set to the highest value. I tried bringing it down to more bearable levels using the keyboard shortcut but nothing happened. I opened up the “Power Options” window and the brightness setting were gone.
After a lot of hair pulling, I realized my display adapter/graphics card wasn’t functioning. I checked the device status in the Device Manager and was greeted by the following error message:
“This Device cannot start. (Code 10)”
A Code 10 error basically indicates that the particular device is failing to start-up and the reason/s for that might be different. It might be a software related issue concerning the drivers of the particular hardware device or, more rarely but quite possibly, a hardware fault. Further, this error is by no means limited to just display adapters. It is possible to have this error in most other devices connected to your PC. If it is indeed a software associated problem, the fix might be as simple as re-installing the driver of that particular device.
Further, on trying to run the Catalyst Control Center app, the following message was displayed:
“No AMD graphics driver is installed.”
Clearly, the driver files have been corrupted or maybe even deleted. The fix for the problem is pretty straight forward. Re-install /update the driver. Click here to see detailed instructions on how to update your AMD driver. Now I would recommend that you uninstall the currently installed drivers first.
Open Device Manager (Windows Key + X > Device Manager). The driver will be listed under ‘Display Adapters‘. (Note: Right click on the driver and click on Properties and check the Status. It should be displaying the error code mentioned above). Right click and select Uninstall. Install the new drivers. Reboot.
If this doesn’t fix the problem, read the next section for more details.
If the above method doesn’t work and you still see the same error code in the driver status, it is quite possible that the new driver wasn’t installed. In many cases, for some reason, Windows reinstalls the older (and faulty) driver when you reboot your system. You can check the details of the currently installed driver(version, date, etc.) in the Device Manager.
To fix this you need to permanently get rid of the old driver. Now, I personally tried multiple methods and found just one to actually work in my case. The methods are:
- Uninstalling driver in Safe Mode.
- Uninstalling using AMD Install Manager. [Details below]
- Using DDU. Download
- Using AMD Cleanup Utility. Download
- Manually deleting all folders, registry entries, etc. Details
[Warning: There have been cases of AMD Cleanup Utility / DDU uninstalling critical drivers. Use at your own risk]
I personally tried Methods 1,3,4,5 (not 2) separately(followed by manually installing the new driver) but they didn’t do a thing for me as the driver kept reverting back. After trying these methods out a few dozen time, I gave up and thought that I should just use System Restore to restore my PC to an earlier date but Windows 8 messed the whole thing up and that wasn’t the solution for me. I read on some forums that System Restore doesn’t really fix the problem but, if you want to, you could give it a try.
Using AMD Install Manager/What fixed the problem for me:
Windows 8 usually has a folder in which the pre-installed driver setups are present. If the above methods don’t work for you and the driver keeps rolling back, try the following:
- Use AMD Install Manager to delete all traces of AMD software (Warning: This will also erase any sound, input or any Human Interface Device drivers if they are from AMD).
- Do not reboot yet.
- Use DDU/manually remove folders,etc.
- Go to “C:\Windows\Drivers” ***
- Locate Graphics Adapter (AMD) folder.
- Inside the folder should be a setup (AMD Install Manager).
*** While I was looking for any AMD related files, I came across the original driver setups in the mentioned location. In case you can’t find these driver on your disk, I would suggest searching online for AMD Catalyst Install Manager (link). Further, try looking for the original driver i.e. the one that came factory installed. You can check the driver version details in the Device Manager.
This procedure immediately fixed the problem for me and I’m pretty confident if the error is purely caused by driver malfunction(not a hardware problem) this method will work.
If none of the above procedures work, you might want to try System Restore or System Refresh for fixing your drivers.