A look at Snappy Driver Installer Origin (update Windows device drivers)

Martin Brinkmann
Mar 30, 2019
Updated • Jul 27, 2019

Snappy Driver Installer Origin is a free open source and portable program for Microsoft's Windows operating system to update device drivers.

The application is a fork of Snappy Driver Installer, a program that we reviewed back in 2015. Both programs are in active development and it is quite difficult to find out how they differ from each other.

Driver update programs have a bad reputation on Windows; mostly because of shady programs that use scare tactics to get users to pay for updates, and reliability issues.

Snappy Drivers Installer Origin is one of the few good programs in the niche. You can download a small version that comes without any drivers or the whole package using torrents. Note that the torrent download includes all drivers supported which results in a size of more than 14 Gigabytes.

It is recommended to create a System Restore Point or system backup before you install any of the drivers.

Snappy Driver Installer Origin

snappy drivers installer origin

The program interface looks a bit dated. You can change the theme on the left, I suggest you pick Metallic as I find it the most eye pleasing themes.

The driver-less version of Snappy Driver Installer Origin requires an Internet connection. It can download driver metadata or drivers, and will run a scan afterward to match system hardware and installed drivers for that hardware with the most recent versions.

It displays the total number of driver updates that it found at the top; you may click on the link to download the drivers to the local system.

Snappy Driver Installer Origin checks whether System Restore is enabled in the program; check the box in front of the warning to enable the creation of system restore points prior to driver installations.

driver comparison

All devices and drivers found are listed in the main pane. Information is kept to a minimum on this screen by default. You may press the Ctrl-key however when you hover over a device to compare the currently installed driver with the driver Snappy Driver Installer Origin found for the device.

The program lists the driver version and release date for the installed and available driver. You have multiple options to proceed:

  1. Shift-click on any device listed to download (if necessary) and install the driver).
  2. Check multiple devices and select "install" in the sidebar to install drivers for all selected devices.
  3. Click on the "updates are available" entry at the top to open the drivers download interface.

Some driver installations require a restart. Snappy Driver Installer Origin hides all drivers that were not installed until the system is restarted to complete the installation of the driver.

The drivers download window displays all available drivers and information such as the size of the driver. You may check some or all to download them to the local system.

updates available

Options are provided to hide missing driver packs and to "continue seeding after the download is finished". Seeding seems to indicate that drivers get downloaded using torrents and that is verified in the options when you enable Expert Mode.

Advanced features

Check the "Expert Mode" box to displays additional options; doing so unlocks the options menu to change the configuration. Use the options to change torrent settings, e.g. max upload speed or the port that is used, the download path, or add commands that you want executed after installation of drivers.

Expert Mode enables filter options so that you may display only drivers that are newer or better than the installed one among other things.

Closing Words

Snappy Driver Installer Origins is a useful program for Windows administrators and users. You may want to download the full driver package if you use the program regularly to update drivers on client, family, or friend systems.

The application is easy to use and includes an option to create system restore points. The interface needs a refresh though; I'd like to see options to display installed and new drivers directly side by side to compare them directly.

Now You: do you use driver updaters?

software image
Author Rating
3.5 based on 30 votes
Software Name
Snappy Driver Installer Origin
Operating System
Software Category
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  1. Anonymous said on March 2, 2021 at 12:56 am

    I used Snappy Driver Installer to install some supposedly updated drivers, but then found that my system ran extremely slow. It was already running slow, so I didn’t think it was the drivers, but then uninstalled them, deleting the software for the drivers, and let Windows update them. However, I’m considering using Snappy Driver Installer Origin, especially for a Windows-to-go system that always tries to update itself to 20H2 but then neglects to update the drivers first, which it has done for many years. I may have to look to using Powershell to update just the drivers, because Windows Update is not smart enough to do it, to choose which individual updates to install. And, Windows can’t seem to update my old Samsung drivers, so maybe I’ll have to look to Snappy Driver Installer Origin to do that too.

  2. Bear said on March 25, 2020 at 10:25 am

    I too have used this excellent program for yonks.
    Since it was with SAM, b4 it went bad,
    but it is grouse under the fork of Glenn Delahoy :p

    I just wish I could figure out how to update the drivers without downloading them all again,
    then all would be sweet :)

  3. dcot said on February 12, 2020 at 12:00 pm

    On the one hand, I want to give it ten out of ten for finding the necessary driver to get Bluetooth working again after a Windows update broke it, showing the Bluetooth adapter as unknown hardware. Other driver installers had not found the required driver so had not fixed the problem. On the other hand, I give it zero out of ten for installing Opera and changing it to my default browser without asking. Unacceptable. It also got stuck at 95%, “Waiting to reboot” and the review screens after reboot were gobbledegook: looked like placeholders for text instead of the text itself. Poor.

    1. warp10 said on February 15, 2020 at 1:00 am

      You’re confusing the fork “Snappy Driver Installer Origin” with the non-origin version which includes PUP/PUAs.

  4. Robotron 2084 said on July 27, 2019 at 3:33 pm

    @Martin, it’s called Snappy Driver Installer, not Snappy “Drivers” Installer.

  5. Aaron said on July 1, 2019 at 9:46 pm

    I have used this program for years and never had an issue with it.

  6. Axel said on June 10, 2019 at 5:11 pm

    Excellent program to brick a windows installation! Would recommend to those who seek a more active outdoors life, or masochists who enjoy spending upwards of three days in misery.

    Thanks SDI, I hope you contract cancer from the drivers you recommend!

  7. Big Head said on April 15, 2019 at 2:18 am

    I was using SnailDriver, but it missed the last Nvidia update so I removed SnailDriver.

    My system had a buggy display issue (some missing text), so I ran SnailDriver and it said my drivers were up to date. Thus, I spent hours trying to fix that display issue. Then, I went to Nvidia’s site, found a new driver that came out a few days ago for my card, installed it, and everything is working great again.

    SnailDriver, ha. That name fits.

    So, I’m no longer trusting such driver software, at least on my boxes. I will just make bookmarks with notes and get them from the source as need be, as I’ve done for years.

    But on other people’s PCs, I will consider using SDIO. Thanks again for the tip Martin.

    So Martin, have you ever been interviewed on YouTube? I think many of us would like to see that, for better or worse, ha.. Personally, I once helped produce a TV series, but I much prefer staying behind the camera, chilling in the green room, ha..

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on April 15, 2019 at 6:42 am

      I don’t think I was every approached to do an interview :)

  8. Jim Mutdosch said on April 3, 2019 at 3:38 am

    Great program and I tried them all. I love installing a new windows and use this program to install all the drivers easily. I never had any issues just be careful with SATA driver updates. I use it to update servers and desktops. I have experienced nothing but better performance and no issues if you know what you are doing. I know the idea that updating drivers is taboo but newer drivers usually offer improvements just like windows updates. Lots of driver programs are a scam but snappy driver origin is awesome. I love that I usually don’t even have to download the drivers as they are already stored on my flash drive. This is a great tech tool and I’m glad I stumbled on it after trying many crappy updater through the years. It creates a restore point so if you have an issue just restore back…try to figure out which driver has the issue and just skip it or be a newb and say the program sucks and all driver updates are unnecessary just because you don’t understand things. To the people in the know this is the best one out there!!!

  9. Cigologic said on April 3, 2019 at 1:56 am

    > Jojo: “So why does this fork exist? What does it bring to the table?”
    > Robert: “I wonder what the differences are between the fork and the original!”

    Apparently, sometime between end 2016 & early 2017, Snappy Driver Installer (under SamLab) started including adware/PUPs in the compiled builds distributed to the public.

    Users encountered advert popups/ runtime GUI adverts for Avast Antivirus, or SDI quietly downloading & running the Avast AV online installer if the user didn’t quickly dismiss (or accidentally overlooked) the advert countdown timer. [Ref: 1, 2, 3, 4]

    As a result, Snappy Driver Installer Origin — the fork by Glenn Delahoy (the original developer of SDI, before the second developer took over & then handed the project to SamLab) — was started to address the adware/PUP issue, & promises to always deliver a clean product to users. [Ref: 5, 6]

    No idea if SamLab’s SDI has stopped including unwanted “extras” — although I noticed that user complaints have ceased. Or maybe SDI’s mainstream users are generally indifferent to (or don’t even notice) the presence of adware/PUPs.

    References for the backstory …

    [1] https://sourceforge.net/p/snappy-driver-installer/discussion/general/thread/acda9a3a

    [2] https://www.technibble.com/forums/threads/sdi-full-or-sdi-lite.74586/#post-594525

    [3] https://old.reddit.com/r/computertechs/comments/5yag6y/adware_found_in_snappy_driver_installer

    [4] https://forums.malwarebytes.com/topic/197606-possible-false-positive-avastexe-trojanagent

    [5] “The Reason Snappy Driver Installer Origin Exists”:

    [6] https://rmprepusb.blogspot.com/2017/05/snappy-driver-installer-is-dead-long.html

    1. res 149 said on July 5, 2019 at 2:06 pm

      Now this is how you leave a comment!!

      Thanks for the information buddy…linking the sources was greatly appreciated

  10. Sebas said on April 2, 2019 at 8:50 am

    I prefer the built in HP solution software, although I almost never update bios and graphic drivers.

    When used, I disable it again. Do not need all those services and task scheduler spyware entries.

  11. Darren said on April 1, 2019 at 9:37 pm

    Good at the very least as a heads-up for the status of your drivers.

  12. VioletMoon said on March 31, 2019 at 3:24 am

    Must be an April Fools joke. Seriously, the program first asks for permission to go through the firewall–block; then, it loads a host of drivers for devices that don’t even exist on my machine. Completely missed the latest NVIDIA driver. What to think . . . April Fools–not on my machine. Thanks anyway.

    Anyway, “Beat” is an awesome German series, so there’s nothing rotten in Germany.

    1. TimJohniLL said on June 18, 2020 at 1:06 am




      Like Origin Ad-block….. so many forks because the open sourced format inherently leads to bad actors and flat out shady people to take advantage of a recognized name and profit off it.

    2. 123 said on March 31, 2019 at 10:37 am

      And how do you think your downloads drivers if you do not allow it to pass through the firewall? This is a p2p torrent downloader! Smartie…
      The concept of this program is to download a whole package of drivers (audio, video, etc), and later you can install different drivers on different computers.
      This program uses drivers from driverpack.net as well as many other programs of this type, and the driver’s databases are updated from time to time, say once in 2 months, so it may happen that the driver is not the latest …

  13. Robert said on March 31, 2019 at 3:16 am

    I downloaded Snappy Driver Installer (NOT Snappy Driver Installer) via p2p protocol and tried it. I had two drivers that it needed to update. The one driver was for the graphics card which it said needed to be upgraded to 4.25. I checked with the Nvidia website and the latest version is at 4.19. So this open source program wants me to use beta? I downgraded to 4.19 just in case 4.25 is unstable yet. I wonder what the differences are between the fork and the original!

  14. 420 said on March 30, 2019 at 11:02 pm

    I was impressed with the speed of this program, it loaded and found drivers only one bad one in a minute or less. Much faster than I could find them and download them on my own. This program seems suited for people trying to run windows 10 on older hardware more than people with new hardware. Someone mentioned is it better to have the newest driver or dont fix stuff if it is not broke. I prefer to have the newest driver because it often has better quality or more features, at least most of the time it has broad fixes to the previous driver.

    1. bidomomos said on February 14, 2021 at 7:02 pm

      You forgot people with old systems unable to find drivers in the manufacturer’s website any longer, and stuff alike

  15. Jojo said on March 30, 2019 at 7:02 pm

    I use the original Snappy Driver once or twice a year to do a full update on my Win10 system. Haven’t had any problems.

    So why does this fork exist? What does it bring to the table?

    1. GroupNebula563 said on April 23, 2022 at 10:57 pm

      Pretty sure it has the old scripting API

  16. Steve said on March 30, 2019 at 6:57 pm

    Giving how the world is changing regarding security, supply-chain attacks, etc., using an application like this that download a bunch of drivers from who knows where sources, it’s a big no-no IMHO. The only case where this program could be used is to resolve a difficult driver issue in an old system.

  17. ULBoom said on March 30, 2019 at 6:29 pm

    Used it for a time and it finds lots of drivers, how it knows which version is “better” IDK. So, I updated a number of drivers after looking closely at the details and no problems; “better” IDK, but nothing was hosed, a low bar to cross.

    The interface is very confusing, you can either get updates online or download a billion of them at once, good if you trust this enough to take the file to another machine and that only makes sense if the other machine is similar to the first.

    Second time I tried it it froze repeatedly, so it was uninstalled.

    I’ve used other driver update utilities, Driver Booster comes to mind. DB is simple, Snappy is quite disorganized, on par with the old version of Windows Firewall Control, too many “wtf did that do?” moments.

    There are times when the manufacturer’s site or device’s site either don’t have updates or recommend updates years old that are claimed current and a utility may help, otherwise, probably not.

    Maybe Snappy is better now, if I get stuck, I might try it again. On a positive note, it’s not an ad server that finds drivers like DB is and doesn’t seed your registry insanely.

  18. Harro Glööckler said on March 30, 2019 at 5:37 pm

    I don’t trust those driver updaters and prefer doing everything manually. For the computer i’m currently sitting at – Nvidia’s page for GPU, Intel’s page for MB chipset, Realtek’s page for audio and WLAN and Logitech’s page for kb/mouse. Yeah, searching takes a little longer than just clicking a button, but it’s still much faster than downloading some 14GB+ driver pack.

    1. sean8102 said on July 20, 2019 at 2:51 am

      Just to be clear you do not need to download any of the driver packs. Those are only for updating a PC that has no internet access. You put the program on a flash drive, download the driver packs you want, then put the flash drive into the offline PC and it can update/install drivers for it because the driver pack is already downloaded.

      To update a online PC you just use the download index option. It scans your pc and downloads only newer drivers for your hardware.

    2. sean8102 said on July 20, 2019 at 2:49 am

      Just to be clear about the way it works, you do not need to download any of the driver packs. Those are only needed if you want to update another computer that dose not have internet access. You put the program on a flash drive and download the driver packs you want and use that flash drive to update the computer that has no internet.

      Otherwise you just use the download index option which scans your computer and only downloads updated drivers for your PC.

  19. Clairvaux said on March 30, 2019 at 5:28 pm

    Irrespective of driver updating programs, there really does not seem to be a consensus between “Make sure your drivers (or firmware) are always up-to-date”, and “Don’t update drivers (or firmware) unless something is broken” (how do I know something is broken ?).

    Or is there ?

  20. stefann said on March 30, 2019 at 4:18 pm

    “whether System Restore is enabled” – system restore shouldn’t be used, as many other services, when You use a SSD.

    1. lewkon said on March 30, 2019 at 9:55 pm

      Because? It’s 2019, not 2009. A modern system like Windows 10 knows when you use SSD and can manage services in line with your hardware. Writing that there are services that should not be used when you have an SSD drive is showing ignorance of how modern operating systems work.

      1. goofus said on March 31, 2019 at 11:04 pm

        Windows 10 recongizes my NVME drives as SSDs but it thinks my SATA SSDs are hard drives. The built in tool offers to defrag them instead of run TRIM

    2. Clairvaux said on March 30, 2019 at 5:31 pm

      Really ? Why that ?

      1. ULBoom said on March 30, 2019 at 8:06 pm

        Oops, forgot to mention that System Restore can’t be moved from the System Drive. Backups can go anywhere, though.

      2. ULBoom said on March 30, 2019 at 8:03 pm

        With the assumption that SSD’s have a shorter life than HDD’s, restores would be best saved on a HDD or externally. Restores don’t decrease the life of a SSD anymore than any other read writes. SSD’s don’t have an inherently shorter life than a HDD, although their failure modes are different. Restore only saves incremental changes, not everything each time.

        When SSD’s first came out, like a decade ago, there were some flaky ones that started ideas that are no longer true but still floating around.

        Wikipedia has a good up to date article about SSD’s. A lot of what you find online otherwise is old info, there’s not much new stuff because SSD’s work well now.


        This will give you an estimate how much life your SSD has. It was reviewed at ghacks:

        We have one SSD in my laptop a Toshiba NVMe. After 3 years it’s at 90% life with a lot of video editing done on it. The wiki will explain why that’s almost no wear. Lemme see, how many HDD’s have I replaced over the years…?

  21. Valrobex said on March 30, 2019 at 2:57 pm

    I agree. If it’s not “busted” don’t fix it.

    1. 123 said on March 31, 2019 at 10:42 am

      It is not busted, it simply does not exist, or it does working badly, it happens sometimes…

  22. Emil said on March 30, 2019 at 11:14 am

    Driver installers are one of the most prominent noobie scams, you use such overly nice words.

    Now this one claims there are more up to date drivers for EVERYTHING on my system. But when I go manually to the manufacturer sites I’m completely up to date. I don’t dare to click anything on this program because it will very probably install right away and brick my system.

    What’s going on?? Does it fail to even read version numbers?

    1. Anon said on August 7, 2019 at 11:20 pm

      System integrators tend to provide support for a period and then stop providing updates, even if upstream development remains active. That’s why the manufacturer’s site reflects drivers are up to date. A commonly seen example are GPU drivers. Both Nvidia and AMD support their GPUs for years, but if you go to Dell or wherever, you might see for download the original factory install drivers and an updated set some six months down the line but nothing after that, even as upstream updates come out about twice per month.

    2. ilev said on March 31, 2019 at 8:26 am

      “Driver installers are one of the most prominent noobie scams, ”
      This, and Fix, improve.. Windows performance utilities.

    3. Emil said on March 30, 2019 at 4:41 pm

      OK the test went ahead with a fresh full backup having my back. This driver manager uses its own cobbled together repositories that may contain OEM and other rare versions of the drivers. For example the Intel chipset drivers were ahead of those that Intel itself offers for download, at least by version number…

      I went ahead and all seems good – but there’s at least a chance of something funky happening in a number of ways. I’m glad I have the Macrium backup and will be keeping it for a while.

  23. Kubrick said on March 30, 2019 at 11:04 am

    I see no reason to habitually update drivers unless a specific device is causing a problem.This is a sure fire way to hose your system.I personally when i used windows found drivermax to be an easier program.

  24. peerer said on March 30, 2019 at 10:26 am

    i never update drivers unless new version fixes something
    by new i mean 1 month old update
    i update drivers manually

  25. Malte said on March 30, 2019 at 9:56 am

    If there is one software program that i would never ever install again (open-source or not), it’s a driver manager. Stay away from such programs… you don’t wanna jerk around with Realtek and controller drivers. If the system runs well, you don’t need to update drivers. The only drivers you might wanna update is the one for your graphics card and even then it only makes sense to update if you play new games that profit from the changes.

    1. 123 said on March 31, 2019 at 10:17 am

      You didn’t install this one obviously!

  26. md said on March 30, 2019 at 9:54 am

    I use it mostly for finding that obscure device on an older laptop. It’s best to not touch the motherboard drivers though, use the OEM packages for that.

  27. cryohellinc said on March 30, 2019 at 9:22 am

    Updating drivers with it caused a bricked windows installation. Its nice for selective update, however, don’t go all out and just let it do everything for you – it will break your OS.

    1. 123 said on March 31, 2019 at 10:19 am

      Great app never have problem with it…

      1. Jim said on April 3, 2019 at 3:31 am

        I agree just be careful with Sata driver updates and save them for last with a restore point if you really want to try those . All other updates usually work without a hitch.

    2. David Boucher said on March 30, 2019 at 9:59 pm

      This can happen if you update the SATA driver on older systems with it. When used on modern systems – for me, anyway – it’s never broken anything.

    3. Watako Tatako said on March 30, 2019 at 2:38 pm

      I have installed all drivers this program suggested – no problems. Perfectly safe to use.

      1. badbanana said on March 31, 2019 at 9:14 am

        you should have stopped at “no problems”.

        saying “Perfectly safe to use” is highly irresponsible.

      2. cryohellinc said on March 30, 2019 at 8:57 pm

        Liar, it’s system dependent. In my case, it caused bricking of OS by simply following the “suggested” driver set. So don’t lie here and confuse people.

        Choose what you install, don’t blindly click.

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