How to identify direct URL for Windows Update driver in Windows 10

With so many Windows Updates happening in the background you never really know which webpage URL is a source of your PC’s last driver update. Knowing direct URL’s can be particularly useful if you want to have a manual control on driver updates or after a reboot of your PC.

Identify direct URL for Windows Update driver

Here is a method through which you can identify direct URL for a Windows Update driver in Windows 10/8/7. This method involves following steps as follows:

  1. Stopping Windows update service
  2. Cleaning up the local Windows Update cache
  3. Removing driver for a particular device
  4. Restarting Windows update service
  5. Installing latest available driver
  6. Inspecting logs to identify direct URL

Step 1: Stopping Windows Update service

Using admin command prompt, execute command “ net stop wuauserv”. This will stop the Windows Update service.

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

Step 2: Cleaning up the local Windows Update cache

To clean up local Windows Update cache, use admin cmd, and execute the following commands, one after the other:

  • del /s /q %windir%\SoftwareDistribution\*.*
  • del /s /q %windir%\Logs\Windows Update\*.etl

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

Step 3: Removing driver from a particular device

This step involves uninstalling particular device driver. Follow these steps,

  • Start – device manager
  • Open Display adapters
  • Right-click on the device
  • Click Uninstall.

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

  • At the prompt, ensure that “Delete the driver software for this device” is checked.
  • Click OK
  • Wait until the driver is uninstalled
  • On the Action menu click “scan for hardware changes.”
  • The device now comes up with a Yellow-mark over it indicating a driver could not be found. If an older driver was found and installed, you can uninstall that too and repeat until the only basic drive is left.

Step 4: Restarting Windows update service

With the driver successfully uninstalled, now restart Windows update service using admin cmd-prompt. Execute “net start wuauserv”.

Step 5: Installing the latest available driver

Follow these steps to install latest available drivers for a device whose drivers which were uninstalled in Step 3.

  • Start – Device Manager
  • Right-click on the device and click “Update Driver software.”
  • Click “Search automatically for updated driver software.”
  • Wait for driver update to complete

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

Step 6: Inspecting logs to identify direct URL

To identify direct URL for a Windows Update driver you have to browse through logs in Windows directory. Follow these steps:

  • Open Windows/ logs / WindowsUpdate
  • Open the .etl file in notepad (if there is more than one log, open the larger one)

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

  • Search for “. c a b” and find the last match in the file.

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

  • Remove spaces from the string to get the URL of the .cab file.
  • Remove the regional datacenter prefix “au.ds”: Yow will get for example the URL – http://download.windowsupdate.com/d/msdownload/update/driver/drvs/2015/06/200005630_d9e19222b206b4dd6ed9813f790565c2638d0f75.cab.

Direct URL for a Windows Update driver

This is the direct download to your device driver

Source: MSDN blogs.

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.