Glitchy NVIDIA graphics driver cooks graphics cards (update: not that bad)

Thankfully, there's already a fix on the way.

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David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images
David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Many gamers will tell you to hold off on installing the latest drivers for your video card until you know they're safe... and here's why. NVIDIA has pulled a GeForce driver (364.47) after numerous reports of problems with the installation. The symptoms vary from freezing and visual glitches to serious crises like failures to boot or, supposedly, burnt out cards. That's not fun if it turns your costly Titan X into a paperweight. The exact cause isn't clear, but NVIDIA's early look suggests that choosing the express installation creates the problem. Some fans suggest that it may be due to a conflict between old and new software.

The glitch could be a bummer if you're hoping to play The Division, since NVIDIA released the drivers with the Tom Clancy-inspired shooter partly in mind. Take heart, however: there are beta drivers (364.51) that should solve the problem for early adopters, and a Microsoft-certified release should be available soon if you're only willing to trust polished code. Whichever way you go, it's clear that patience really is a virtue in the PC gaming space -- it might just save you from buying a replacement GPU.

Update: 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.

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