Tip & How-To about Computers & Internet

Analyze Your PC & Detect New Driver Updates Online...For Free!

Even if your Support Helpdesk is just a dial away, knowing the innards of your computer is just as important as knowing the software you are working on. Unlike cars, computers need constant updates of both software and hardware. For the sake of efficiency, updating these should be a matter of routine. Take for example, moving from Windows Vista to Windows7; does your computer hardware support the new OS? Or would it do better with some drive upgrades? Thankfully, there are free, single click solutions available which can analyze PC systems and give us a brief on our hardware and the changes that can be made.

Ma-Config is an online tool that does two jobs for us – it analyzes your pc and identifies the hardware and software components (also up to 10 shared PCs). Secondly, with a few clicks, one can download all the latest drivers matching the hardware configuration.

Ma-Config does all the driver detection using a downloadable ActiveX plug-in. The free service is Windows only and is certified by VeriSign. The plug-in is compatible with all the major browsers like Internet Explorer, Opera, Chrome, Firefox and Safari. The driver database is provided by TousLesDrivers.

Ma-Config makes it easy for both the starter guy and the experienced hand. There is nothing complicated to install apart from a little plug-in to start the process to analyze PC systems. Ma-Config moves the process towards the download of the newer drivers and also gives us a few more steps to consider like sharing your configuration or recording it in a PDF document.
Before starting the detection you can change a few of the settings via the Settings link given on the left hand side menu of the homepage. The settings relate to the detail of the detection. For those not comfortable with the terms, the default settings are good enough.
Click on Start the Detection to bare the large green button which tells you to run the detection. The plug-in will analyze the PC system and generates the report summary. Click on the devices list on the left menu to get the finer details. You can redetect your system anytime with a click.
If you now want to update your PC, the large green button marked with Download drivers compatible with this configuration, takes you down that path courtesy of TousLesDrivers.
You can share your configuration using a link or with an email. Or maybe take out a PDF report and mail it directly across. The PDF report comes in quite handy if you want to send it forth to a vendor or to a support technician. Trust me, any extra information you can give to a tech...they will appreciate it.

Ma-Config also has an offline mode whereby you can use the plug-in on a computer not connected to the internet, run the scan and save the results. The results can then be analyzed on another computer with an internet connection.

Ma-Config is a web tool and like all web based tools it prevents us from installing a bulky program. The only minus, some parts of the website are in French.

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