Post by pjp Post by VanguardLH Post by Brian Gregory Post by VanguardLH Post by pjp
I have an old Creative Webcam Gen3. Under XP it required a driver and
that's the last one available. Driver is very old, basically unuasable
in todays OS's.
As a curiousity I plugged it into a couple of Win7 32 bit pcs and they
all saw the camera, downloaded a driver and it was seen as a Windows
Imaging Device and it worked. Under 64 bit Win7 it can't locate a
Same thing happened in last 24 hours, 64 bit Windows with a bluetooth
dongle and it's go looking yourself. 32 bit downloads a driver that
appears to work properly.
Is this a common occurence?
Probably because the last driver provided by Creative (Microsoft doesn't
write the drivers, they just included them in later versions of Windows)
was a 32-bit driver. Unless Creative created a 64-bit driver, there
isn't one for Microsoft to bundle with a later version of Windows.
I think Microsoft writes some drivers but not many.
I suspect the only "drivers" that Microsoft writes are the INF files to
define classes of generic devices (i.e., their miniport drivers).
This was the same idea as when Microsoft provided DirectX, so game
authors would have a consistent interface to which they could code
instead of each author having to design from scratch. In some cases,
all that is needed is the INF "driver", like for mass storage devices
(e.g., hard disks).
There have been problems in the past with hardware vendors doling out a
driver to Windows and then finding their driver has a flaw. I remember
when Promise (probably for a SCSI controller) pushed out a driver to
Microsoft, found it had a flaw that caused data loss, and tried to yank
it within the same week; however, they couldn't get Microsoft to pull
the driver for something like 3 months. For the corrected driver, you
had to use the newest one at Promise's site.
I've had Windows Update try to push a driver that was for a different
model within the same family of products from a vendor. For example, a
When there is no other driver Windows is only option. The Webcam is that
Cameras are split into two groups.
The older cameras didn't follow a standard.
Newer cameras are UVC (USB Video Class) compatible.
They work up to about 960*??? or so. If you want
a higher resolution choice, or custom features
(pan/tilt/zoom), then a custom driver is needed for
the extra features.
The camera consists of two parts. A CMOS or CCD sensor
with a glass top. And a "digital bus" to USB packet
chip to get to the computer. Even if you detected
the conversion chip via its plug and play information,
that doesn't tell you what sensor is being used. If, on
the other hand, the conversion chip accepts an SPD
chip off to the side, then a custom declaration can
be used to state what camera it is. And then PNP
could be used to track down a driver.
Now, if you went to the Linux side, you might find source
code for basic operation. You might even be able to
track down a jumbo Windows driver, based on what
you discover using the enumeration. A tool like
Uwes USBTreeView can be used for this purpose.
Using the info from USBTreeView, you can look up
the device here. For example, your webcam could be
a Sonix non-UVC camera.
62c0 Sonix USB 2.0 Camera
Then you'd head off to Linux land, and
see what materials they used to make the FOSS
driver for the thing.
Note that a few of the Chinese sites hosting a driver
for a Sonix, may harbor malware, so be careful. You can
use Virustotal.com to attempt a scan of a downloader site
like that. Some camera I was working on here, had me
searching in places like that. Because a lot of these
"$5 dental cameras", there's *no* fancy website to get
driver materials. You're left to collect floor sweepings
to make your new purchase work.
That's one reason why vanilla UVC is a useful option.
Even if you cannot "Skype" at 1920x1080, a UVC with
640x480 mode may be sufficient for a connection.