How to Find Ethernet Controller Drivers? – 2 Methods

Last Updated on December 13, 2020

A desktop or laptop Ethernet controller, also known as a network adapter, allows the computer to connect to a network through a wired connection. Like most hardware devices, Ethernet controllers can’t function without proper drivers installed in the computer. So, you would like to know how to find Ethernet controller drivers?

Primarily, it involves determining the model of the Ethernet controller in the Windows Device Manager and then looking for it on the manufacturer’s website. You can also find the hardware id of the specific Ethernet controller in Device Manager. Subsequently, it can be used to find the drivers in the Windows Update Catalog or other websites.

How to Find Ethernet Controller Drivers Model, Version and Brand?

An Ethernet controller is a source of access to network resources that includes a high-speed internet connection. Depending on the model of the Ethernet controller, you need to find its correct driver.

You can still find and obtain the Ethernet controller drivers if you have lost the driver CD that possibly came with the device. Alternatively, you can head over to the manufacturer’s website, find your motherboard model and then download the drivers.

Below we will outline two ways as to how this can be done on Windows-based computers.

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Method 1: Through the Model of the Ethernet Controller

Step 1:

Open Device Manager by right-clicking the Start button and then choosing Device Manager in the menu that appears. Alternatively, you can type Device Manager in the Windows 10 search bar and then click on the result that appears.

Step 2:

In a computer with Windows 7 installed, click the Start Button and then right-click Computer. Upon clicking on Properties, select Device Manager that will display in the menu.

Step 3:

How to Find Ethernet Controller Drivers 2
You can see here that the network controller driver here is the Realtek PCIe GbE Family Controller

Look for a section named Network adapters and double-click on it.

Step 4:

Right-click on the specific device and then choose Properties.

Step 5:

driver details

Head Over to the “Driver” Tab in the properties window.

(Optional To Update Follow These Steps)

Step 6:

Open a web browser and search for the Ethernet controller’s manufacturer’s website.

Step 7:

Once found, navigate to the website and afterward go to the Downloads or Drivers section of the website.

Step 8:

Select your Ethernet controller model or navigate to the Downloads section on the Ethernet controller information page. Alternatively, you can also search for the model through the website’s search feature.

Step 9:

You will find here different drivers for your specific model. Choose the one according to your operating system and computer architecture and then click download. Usually, this will be an executable (.exe) file that you can install.

Method 2: Through the Hardware Id for the Ethernet Controller

This is another method on how to find Ethernet controller drivers. The hardware id for a device can be found in the Device Manager. You can use that to find the drivers of the Ethernet controller that’s installed on your computer. Following are the steps:

Step 1:

Open the Device Manager in the same way as described in the above method. Then double-click on the section named Network adapters.

Step 2:

Right-click the specific Ethernet controller and then choose Properties in the popup menu.

Step 3:

Head over to the Details tab and then select Hardware Ids in the dropdown menu.

Step 4:

ethernet controller hardware id

As there can be multiple hardware ids for an Ethernet controller, choose the top one and then right-click on it to select Copy. This id is the most specific identifier of the device.

(Optional To Update Follow These Steps)

Step 5:

Open a web browser and then navigate to the Windows Update Catalog website. In the search bar paste the hardware id you just copied earlier.

Step 6:

Subsequently, you will be presented with drivers that are specific to the Ethernet controller installed on your computer. You can download a driver by clicking the Download button.

Step 7:

Alternatively, you can paste the copied hardware id into a search engine. The results will take you to websites where you can find the drivers.

Atif Qazi

Atif Qazi is the founder of PCGearLab. He is a PC enthusiast as well as engineer with a keen interest in PC hardware and all stuff related to tech and games.

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I am an engineer with a keen interest and a passion for PC builds and hardware. is essentially the culmination of our enthusiasm towards this subject. We review PC peripherals and hardware, talk about custom builds and informative topics regarding troubleshooting issues, understanding a component better and general tips for DIY PC builders.