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Modem Drivers

Do you know what kind of chipset your modem has? You'll find drivers - or links to driver sources on the page(s) about your modem's chipset. These pages are listed in the "About Modems with Your Chipset" section of the Troubleshooting Contents page - and also at the bottom of this page. This site has driver downloads for Lucent/Agere LT Win Modem; as well as links to drivers for most other modems.

Do you know what driver version you are using now? See Driver Versions. Before attempting to upgrade or change your driver, you should determine the version you are presently using.

Microsoft's Windows Update for XP site has drivers and links to drivers for many modems. (Note: I know of no way to get these drivers from Microsoft if you aren't running XP - which can create a catch 22 - see 16-Feb-02 latest update.)

If you don't know what chipset your modem has - you need to find out:
   The Chipset Page

IF YOU ARE INSTALLING WINDOWS XP and you are having trouble with the modem, see Windows XP & Modems.

But first: Do you really need a modem driver? - See the information below based upon the type of modem you have:

If you have a modem that has a hardware controller:
  Conexant/Rockwell ACF, Lucent/Agere Venus, Many USR models, etc.

The modem doesn't need a driver to work - the "driver" that makes it a modem is in the modem and is known as flash firmware. To install the modem in Windows, the "driver" is an .inf file that defines the modem's command set and other responses for Windows-TAPI applications. Connectivity problems basically are unaffected by the "driver" - only a firmware flash can change the code that determines how well your modem will perform. If you have a problem with this type of modem, consult the Interactive Troubleshooter or Troubleshooting Contents for information on your type of trouble.

If you have a modem that lacks a hardware controller:
Winmodems, Soft Modems, HSP Modems, AMR Modems, many USB modems - includes
  Rockwell/Conexant HCF, HSF, Soft56, Lucent/Agere 'LT', AMR, Scorpio, Mars, Apollo; Motorola; PCTel; BCM; IntelHaM, etc.

A driver is necessary for the modem to work. There are hundreds of modem brand names, manufacturers, and sources for modems with varying degrees of support. Fortunately, there are only a handful of chipset makers - and a common driver base for each of the chipsets.

You really need a modem driver if your modem doesn't work at all: if it hasn't installed properly, or if you cannot talk to it as described in Setting Up Hyperterminal. (But, again - not always: See the "If your Modem Doesn't Work at All" listings in Troubleshooting Contents.)

An updated modem driver might help if you are having connectivity problems - disconnects, difficulty connecting, or disappointing speeds - however: there may be other causes/solutions. Before you get a new modem driver, I strongly suggest you do some basic testing to create a baseline to compare against, as well as investigate some of the common cures to problems - Getting rid of init strings, Limiting Connect Speed, Disabling 56k, etc. See the Troubleshooting Contents page.

About Modems with your Chipset:
Broadcom BCM Modem
 Information & driver sources for Broadcom BCM Software Modem
 Information & driver sources for Cirrus/Ambient/Intel chipset Modems
ESS & SGS ST Micro Modems
 Info for modems with ESS & SGS/ST-Micro Chipsets 
Lucent/Agere AMR Modem
AKA Scorpio; Info & driver sources for this soft HSP modem.
Lucent/Agere LT Win Modem:
 Information & driver sources for this widely-used modem
Lucent Venus Modem
Information for Lucent Venus chipset Modems
Lucent Wildwire Modem:
 Information for Lucent/Agere's DSL/Analog Win Modem
Motorola Modems
 Information for modems with Motorola SM56 Chipset
PCTel Chipsets
   Info & driver sources for modems based upon PCTel chipsets
Rockwell/Conexant HCF Modem:
 Information & driver sources for HCF modems
Rockwell/Conexant HSF Soft56 Modem:
 Information & driver sources for Conexant HSF Soft56 Modems
Smartlink Chipset
 Info & driver sources for modems based upon Smartlink chipsets
TOPIC Chipset
 Information & driver sources for TOPIC chipset (560x) Modems
USR/3Com Modems
 USR Chipsets
  Information for USR/3Com modems
 USR Diag. Screens
   Blers, retrains, and more - what they mean

 Flashing a COURIER modem
 How to Flashback 3Com/USR
   Archive the flash code for your /USR/Sportster modem
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