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Nvidia’s latest drivers reportedly damaged some systems

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Nvidia released their latest GeForce Game Ready 364.47 WHQL drivers almost two days ago. Unfortunately, some PC gamers who updated their systems with the new drivers experienced multiple issues, from Blue Screens of Death (BSOD) and game crashes to the driver installation breaking their Operating System (OS) and even reportedly “destroying their graphics cards”.

(Please note that not all users are affected by the issues)

Not so “Game Ready” after all

For those unfamiliar with Nvidia’s “Game Ready” drivers, they are a sets of drivers released that do not necessarily add extra features, but are tweaked by the Nvidia’s driver team to provide the best possible day-one gaming experience for new titles. The 364.47 driver was supposed to provide the optimal experience in Tom Clancy’s The Division and Need for Speed. Unfortunately, the driver caused devastating issues for some users.

There are hundreds of reports (on Reddit, the Nvidia forums and NeoGAF) about system crashes, bugs and even graphics cards dying.

Scott23 on the Nvidia forums states: “It did fry my graphics card. My computer kept rebooting while I was away. My system got overheated and now my graphics card not working on other machine too. It is a GTX 960. It just give me blank screen on another computer too. This is one of those rare time I wish I was a console gamer.” - Source

Reddit user LiamNesssons comments: “BSOD while installing, pc unable to boot, kept receiving BSOD on login screen. Forced me to restore to an earlier restore point...Please fix Nvidia” - Source

The comments above are only a small sample of the plethora of PC gamers reporting the issues. Thankfully, Nvidia pulled the driver, rolling back their latest official release to version 362.00 according to my GeForce Experience application.

Now, I want to make one thing to make perfectly clear: It is almost impossible for a driver to destroy a graphics card. Engadget reports that:

“NVIDIA tells us that it hasn't seen reports of damaged video cards, and that the most grievous issues are blacked out or corrupted screens. There isn't anything that could fry your card in the driver, the company says. That's something of a relief, although it won't be much consolation if you can't use your system.” - Source

Nvidia wasn’t sure what was causing the issues themselves, first saying that that it was due to having “more than one monitor connected”, then later warning users against choosing the “Express” setup when installing the drivers.

Nvidia did release a new “beta driver” called 364.51, stating that:  

“After finding a critical installation issue, the team has replaced yesterday's driver (364.47) with today's new driver (364.51). We had received reports of some users having issues installing driver version 364.47. Initial investigation suggests the issue was related to doing an "Express" installation.  If you happen to have a pending installation of 364.47, we recommend that you do not install it and either use the new 364.51 beta version or wait for the WHQL certified version.” - Source

The beta driver should go into full release soon, after it is approved and certified by Windows Hardware Quality Labs (WHQL).

I HIGHLY recommend holding off until the 364.51 driver is out of beta; and maybe even a few days after that. The reception to the beta driver has already been mixed, as some Reddit users report their issues are now fixed, while others are reporting the exact same problems. It is simply not worth the risk of your OS crashing and multiple other system issues that could occur.  

Those who do claim to have lost their graphics card or experience severe system issues due to the drivers probably won’t get any compensation or a replacement card from Nvidia. According to the 364.47 driver “License for Customer Use of Nvidia Software” which states that:

“To the maximum extent permitted by applicable law, in no event shall Nvidia or its suppliers be liable for any special, incidental, indirect, or consequential damages whatsoever (including, without limitation, damages for loss of business profits, loss of data, business interruption, loss of business information, or any other pecuniary loss) arising out of the use of or inability to use the software, even if Nvidia has been advised of the possibility of such damages.” - Source  

Did you install the 364.47 drivers and did you run into any of the issues mentioned in this article? Would you install the 364.51 beta drivers after this debacle or hold off for a while? Let us know in the comment section below.

Sources: Nvidia1, Nvidia2, Reddit, License Agreement, Engadget
Main Image Credit: Wallpaperup

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