This topic is a how to.
Please keep it as clear and simple as possible. Avoid speculative discussions as well as deep dive into underlying mechanisms or related technologies.

(what is this box?)

Generally speaking, the best tool to manage device drivers is “Device Manager”. That is a GUI snap-in for Microsoft Management Console (MMC). You can start it by launching devmgmt.msc. But that's not an options in some specific cases, namely:

  1. Scripting.
  2. Windows Server installed in Server Core option.

In these cases you need a command-line tool. Microsoft provides two such tools that differ both in their capabilities and availability.

Plug-and-Play (PnP) Utility (PNPUtil.exe)

Basic Features:

  • List drivers - PNPUTIL.EXE -e
  • Add driver.
  • Install driver.
  • Remove driver.

Pros:

  • Included out of the box with all current Windows versions.
  • Syntax complexity is medium.

Cons:

  • Does not provide advanced functionality such as:
    • Disable device.
    • Select one specific driver for specific device from the list of compatible drivers that are currently installed in the system.

Availability:

  • Inbox with all current Windows versions.

More information:

  • For a detailed description, comprehensive list of features, syntax and command-line examples please see official documentation at PnPUtil.

Device Console (DevCon.exe)

Features (also Pros):

  • All device and driver management functionality that can be found in Device Management MMC including advanced functionality such as:
    • Disable device.
    • Select one specific driver for specific device from the list of compatible drivers that are currently installed in the system.

Cons:

  • Not available out-of-the box.
  • Syntax complexity is high.

Availability:

More information:

  • For a detailed description, comprehensive list of features, syntax and command-line examples please see official documentation at DevCon.

Links