Graphics Driver Shows as Microsoft Basic Display Adapter [Solved]

By Sophie Luo in Driver ErrorGraphic Issues Tags: Graphics Cards
Driver Easy Free updates your missing, outdated and/or faulty graphics card driver in no time!

If you just updated to a new version or build of Windows 10, or did a reformatted your computer, and you find that your screen resolution is terrible, you’re not alone. Many Windows 10 users are reporting this problem as well. In fact, this is not a unique problem for Windows 10 users, it happened on Windows 8.1 and Windows 8 before.  

If you look deeper in Device Manager, you will see that the item listed under the Display adapters category is not the graphics card you have, say Intel HD 4400, AMD 7800 etc, but Microsoft Basic Display Driver

You may wonder, what happen to my graphics card, and why can’t I see it anymore? No worries, this problem is not at all hard to fix. And we’re here to help. 

Here are 4 solutions for you to try. You may not need to try them all; just work your way down and find the one works for you. 

Method 1: Run Windows Updates
Method 2: Update Graphics Card Driver
Method 3: Replace Graphics Card
Method 4: Downgrade operating system

Note: The screen shots below are shown in Windows 10, but all fixes apply to Windows 8.1 as well. 

Method 1: Run Windows Updates

One of the reasons why you have the Microsoft Basic Display Driver instead of the right one for your video card is that Windows has yet to provide you with the proper driver update after your operating system upgrade. So you may need to run the update manually. Here is how: 

1) On your keyboard, press the Windows logo key and I at the same time, then click Update & security



2) Click Check for updates. See if Windows will help you locate the needed graphics driver for you. 

3) If this is not helping, please go to the methods below for more assistance. 


Method 2: Update the graphics card driver

If Windows Update can’t get you the correct graphics card driver, you can try to locate the driver in the following ways: 

Manual driver update – You can update your graphics card driver by going to the manufacturer’s website and searching for the most recent correct driver. 

If you’re a laptop user, you should always go to your laptop manufacturer to search for the appropriate driver to download. Graphics card manufacturer is not recommended as you might lose some important customized features for your graphics card.  If you don’t have the time, patience or computer skills to update your graphics card driver manually, you can always do it automatically with Driver Easy

Automatic driver update – Driver Easy will automatically recognize your system and find the correct display driver for it. You don’t need to know exactly what system your computer is running, you don’t need to risk downloading and installing the wrong driver, and you don’t need to worry about making a mistake when installing. You can update your drivers automatically with either the FREE or the Pro version of Driver Easy. But with the Pro version it takes just 2 clicks (and you get full support and a 30-day money back guarantee):

1) Download and install Driver Easy.

2) Run Driver Easy and click Scan Now button. Driver Easy will then scan your computer and detect any problem drivers. 

3) Click the Update button next to the flagged graphics card to automatically download and install the correct version of this driver (you can do this with the FREE version).

Or click Update All to automatically download and install the correct version of all the drivers that are missing or out of date on your system (this requires the Pro version – you’ll be prompted to upgrade when you click Update All). 


Method 3: Replace graphics card

If updating your graphics card driver doesn’t help to solve the problem, you may need to consider getting your graphics card replaced, as it might be faulty. 

Note that certain series of display card products are not certified to support Windows Display Driver Model 1.2 or higher, and therefore, do not have driver support for Windows 10. 

Therefore, it is suggested that you change your current display driver to a more advanced one. You may need to consult professional advice on how to select a good graphics card for your computer. 

Method 4: Downgrade operating system 

If you are not ready to make a new investment by purchasing a brand new graphics card for your PC, here is your alternative: downgrade your Windows 10 to its previous version, be it Windows 8 or Windows 7. 

For more information as to how to downgrade your current operating system to its previous one, please refer to this post here: How to downgrade your Windows 10 to Windows 7/ 8.1? 

  • Nathan Budd

    Replace graphics card…

    I’m using a laptop with an onboard Intel 5500 Graphics card! How can you suggest replacing that?!

  • Tiffany

    I would like to leave a comment for those of us that this DIDN’T work for and who may also have had issues with the driver info along with the card not showing up. I got my graphics card to register/show up instead of Microsoft Basic Display Adapter by right clicking MBDA and going to properties.Then going to update drivers>Browse my computer>DVD RW Drive(E:) and searched it b/c the CD that came with the graphics card was in there. After allowing this to happen my card showed up in place of MBDA. I was at this for 4hrs until i figured this out, i hope this helps

    • kevin

      if u want, next time u can double click setup.exe from the cd, much easier than browsing thru folders