Want The Latest NVIDIA Drivers? Then You’ll Have To Go Through GeForce Experience

Want The Latest NVIDIA Drivers? Then You’ll Have To Go Through GeForce Experience

For years people have happily gone through NVIDIA’s site to get the latest and greatest drivers for their Big Green cards. New beta? Time to get a new driver. Major AAA release? There’s a new driver. The GeForce Experience application made it a little easier to keep track of proceedings, although it wasn’t always great and sometimes resulted in some software conflicts.

But if you want to keep downloading the latest Game Ready drivers into the future, you’ll have to have GeForce Experience installed — and you’ll have to give your email over to the GPU manufacturer, too.

The change was first picked up by PC World, who reported that Game Ready drivers will require NVIDIA’s middleware and a verified email from “sometime in mid-December”. Some updates will still be available directly through the website (or, God forbid, Windows Update), but those will be released every quarter and won’t be anywhere near as frequent as those available through GFE.

Sean Pelletier, a senior product manager at NVIDIA, reportedly told a group of journalists that the company was dealing with roughly two groups. “On one hand you have the gamer that’s just casually playing things here and there, using their system for daily use and gaming on the side. They don’t want to be inundated with these [Game Ready] drivers,” Pelletier is quoted as saying.

A post on NVIDIA’s blog, and a release sent to Australian press, confirmed the report. “The next time you download a driver, enter a verified email address at the prompt to get first access to Game Ready Drivers, news and announcements, and prizes and game codes,” NVIDIA says on their site.

It’s a slightly strange move considering NVIDIA’s marketing pitch — and much of the way GFE is designed — is about giving gamers options. This move does precisely the opposite: it forces you into the GFE ecosystem, which, particularly if you’re a Twitch streamer or have a YouTube channel and a bone to pick with NVIDIA’s middleware, may not be a place you want to be.

[PC World]


  • I like GFE, but I really don’t like this move. I had an earlier problem where my driver wasn’t up-to-date, but I couldn’t tell because GFE told me I had the latest driver. I had to go through their site to get the latest.

  • Not a fan of this move either. The other month I paid $1100.00 for a GTX980 Ti Gaming 6gb and now I will not be able to access the full optional range of drivers unless I sign up to something I don’t like or want GFE. They are trying to blackmail serious gaming people into software we do not necessarily want. I for one will be taking the fight to them. I bought my GPU in good faith that I would be able to install the drivers/software I wanted from their download list. This is pure corporate blackmail, it smacks of MS tactics.

  • Snarf. That.
    I don’t want to install another program just to use the latest drivers. I’m expecting unofficial repacks to become pretty popular, nVidia’s releases are already bloated enough as it is.

  • Dead Rising 3 crashes every 15 minutes – common fault with NVidia cards… why doesnt the GFE have a fix for this?

  • Not a huge fan of GFE. Often get notified of a new update only for it to fail to download through GFE. I then have to visit the website to download it and install it manually. Now you want my email to market to me and offer BS prizes? Thanks NVIDIA why don’t you go change your name to Origin whilst your at it.

  • *Shrugs* I’ll just give them my spam email.

    In the end, as long as I can do a Manual selection during the driver installation wizard, I’m happy. Oh, and the ability to disable GFE’s other crappy features (and future crappy features) that’s always a nice choice to have.

  • GFE destroyed my brother’s faith in NVidia (it ruined his OS when he tried to upgrade to a new GFX card for reasons beyond my comprehension, so he handed it back and got an ATI card instead). I personally found the GForce Experience to be annoying, clumsy and encumbering as the program did nothing but interrupt me and stand in my way. This decision is horrible.

    • It is definitely good but the main problem is at certain time it freezes? Sometimes their own update broke the gfe and he won’t load.

      Sometimes I spend 20 minutes trying to start an update using gfe and I used 2 minutes to download using the website

      • For you perhaps, guy who has no perspective of the experiences of others. So some guy says “good program” and you’re genius response is “no it’s not”? With that level of reasoning, i’m not sure you’ve presented yourself as reliable in your opinions. Why do people just make arbitrary statements as if they’re explanations, can’t you tell the difference?

        • Plenty of people in the thread have pointed out issues with GFE, and the guy did nothing but say “it’s a good program.”

          Now, to be perfectly honest, I have nothing against GFE, but I haven’t really encountered any problems with it. That said, being *forced* to use GFE to get updates rather than being able to download and install driver versions of your choice is very much a move that will alienate a lot of the dedicated gamers who want high end cards.

          Of course, I don’t actually run the latest version of drivers by choice, because there are certain modding tools I use that will not run correctly with drivers newer than a certain date (and those programs aren’t about to get an update).

          Finally, there is no reason gamers should be forced to have GFE installed on their computer, as it really doesn’t do anything of significant value for people who actually know what they are doing – it’s merely occupying system resources for no benefit. For those who aren’t sure what settings they should run their game at for optimal visual fidelity and performance, yes, it offers value, but PC owners should be allowed to have the choice.

        • For you perhaps, guy who has no perspective of the experiences of others. So some guy says “good program” and you’re genius response is “no it’s not”?

          I don’t really understand how my response of “It’s not a good program” is any more or less valid than the assertion that it is. At least I qualify my statement by saying it’s a “slow, bloated, waste of space”. I also didn’t claim to be speaking to the experience of others.

          I find it slow because once you have 90+ games in the list available for optimisation like I do the entire application runs slowly, and GFE fails to optimise about half of the ones on the list anyway.

          I’ve found numerous times that a new driver was out and GFE didn’t tell me. I’ve had to download and install it manually, completely defeating one of the purposes of GFE. Just last night GFE started reporting that I don’t have a compatible video card, despite an hour earlier being happy with my 2 x GTX980’s in SLI, so I had to perform a manual reinstall of the video drivers (clean). Why can’t GFE know certain games don’t work with SLI and set the profiles accordingly instead of making me do it manually via the nVidia Control Panel (a completely seperate application)? That would actually be useful!

          So forgive me if I don’t fall over myself trying to heap praise all over GFE. In its current form it is a slow, bloated, waste of space, and is not designed for anyone above beginner users. Remind me again why GFE is necessary?

  • Screw you Nvidia. AMD gets shafted by certain games (or their crappy drivers) and Nvidia treat their customers like babies, and neither can offer any real value for money any more.
    980ti… The Ti is more expensive than its derivative?

    Never again going to re-experience the joy of buying/using a card like the 8800GT.

    • “I’d like a small meal, please.”

      “Would you like to upsize? For an extra $1 we give you a school bag of chips and a bucket of coke”

      “I’m not THAT hungry, but that offer is too good to refuse.”

  • This is the Official fall of Nvidia, and the Official rise of ATI. Multibillion Corp with coding error (clears.throat) no, Corporate greed and corruption. Goodbye Nvidia.

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