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On several new laptops having an Nvidia video card the graphics card goes completely missing! I was surprised when this happened on my 5 month old Asus K55VM laptop. One day I suddenly noticed that some of the games were laggy. I tried opening the Nvidia control panel but to my surprise I got an error that no video card was detected! Not only that, the graphics driver went missing from Device Manager too. Rebooting didnt help ofcourse. So I googled for about 2 days. I read about the Nvidia updates causing a problem and how we need to add the device id of the video card driver to the inf files to fix it etc. My instincts told me that either the fix was a simple one or the video card had fried. BIOS on these new laptops hardly provide any information. (BIOS couldn’t detect any video card when I first purchased the laptop let alone now).
So I first installed a third party Driver Scanner and ran a scan to make sure the video card wasn’t fried. (There is also an option to enable hidden devices in Device Manager. And sure enough my video card was present there although grayed out with the name VGA driver)
Note: Do not uninstall the Integrated Graphics driver. This is not necessary.
I then uninstalled the grayed out video card driver from device manager. I uninstalled the Nvidia control panel too. But after rebooting I was still unable to install the Nvidia driver. There was no video card detected. As I had disabled System Restore I was out of options and so decided to reinstall Windows. But I thought one of one last thing…
Sometimes powering off the laptop and removing the battery and putting it back in helps resolve many issues(like laptop not booting, driver issues too as I found out!). That is exactly what I did! I removed the battery and putit back in and upon powering it back on I was able to see the graphics driver in device manager. I was also able to install and update the Nvidia driver.
Why does this happen?
On new laptops there is a mechanism that disables the graphics card (and the driver too) when the laptop battery goes low. I realized that on two occasions my laptop’s battery had died completely. This is when the graphics card driver must have disappeared!
Do not panic or uninstall anything if this happens to your laptop. But do not let the battery die completely. Just remove the battery and put it back in. When the laptop is on AC power the graphics card will reappear magically ….to be continued

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