Microsoft Windows 8 Driver Management: In-Box versus Out-Of-Box device drivers for Lenovo-branded personal computers


Information that describes Microsoft Windows 8 In-Box versus Lenovo Out-Of-Box device drivers.

Affected configurations

The above symptom is associated with but not limited to the following systems:

  • ThinkCentre
  • ThinkStation
  • ThinkServer
  • ThinkPad
  • Idea Tablet
  • IdeaPad
  • IdeaCentre

Affected Systems:

  • Any Lenovo-branded personal computer with Microsoft Windows 8 (non-Lenovo preloaded) operating system installed

System is configured with:

  • Microsoft Windows 8 operating system

Operating Systems:

  • Microsoft Windows 8

A specific install process is not defined to install a Microsoft In-box driver.  In-box drivers are installed when the operating system is initially installed.  Lenovo does not provide In-box drivers and does not provide support for In-box drivers.  The In-box drivers are Microsoft digitally signed and are included with the operation system install media.  Microsoft is responsible for providing support for In-box drivers.

Additional Information

After a system is installed with Microsoft Windows 8 operating system, the personal computer user is searching for specific hardware device drivers.  

Microsoft defines an “In-box” driver as a device driver supplied by Microsoft and resides on the operating system install media.  An “Out-Of-Box” driver is one supplied by the system manufacture for a specific hardware device.  Lenovo provides the Out-Of-Box drivers for hardware specific platforms.  If a Lenovo hardware specific Out-Of-Box driver is not available, then the Microsoft In-box driver is required.  The Microsoft In-box driver is supported by Microsoft.

Lenovo provides Windows 8 driver packages that are backwards compatible with older systems.  These drivers are common to many hardware platforms and to currently supported machines.  The following are examples of In-box and Out-Of-Box device drivers.

In-Box Example - ThinkPad X200 audio driver:

Lenovo provides Conexant audio drivers for Windows Vista, Windows XP and Windows 7.  Lenovo does not provide a Windows 8 Conexant audio driver.  In this instance, the use of a Windows 8 In-box audio driver is required for Windows 8 audio.

Out-Of-Box Example - ThinkPad UltraNav device driver:

This driver is supported on multiple operating systems and on multiple hardware platforms.  However, the availability of a common device driver for an older ThinkPad system does not imply that all device drivers are available for every operating system.

Additional Lenovo Support Information:

Additional Microsoft Information:

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  • Alias ID: SF13-D0066
  • Document ID: HT077265
  • Last Updated :10 Feb 2015
  • © 2015 Lenovo