Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 8/19/2016’

[German]Currently users of Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1, and related Windows Server pendants are offered an optional update ‘Intel – System – 8/19/2016’. There is not much information provided from Microsoft. I’ve read some speculations on several web sites. Therefore a few hints, for what this update is for.


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I’ve addressed this topic in my blog post Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 6/28/2016’ published early in December 2016. The blog post covers a similar update, pushed a few weeks ago. Now a few additional information, what the new  ‘Intel-August-Update’ is for.

Update INTEL – System – 8/19/2016

I got the information about that update from a reader of my German blog – I haven’t received it on my machines. The blog reader wrote:

My Win 8.1 machine (fully patched) offers me since a few days an optional update, see image, on Windows Update. Following the link provided at
http://sysdev.microsoft.com/en-US/Hardware/support/default.aspx doesn’t work. I’ve installed the newest chipset drivers, Intel doesn’t provides newer drivers.

I haven’t installed this optional update. The date is interesting – and the update package is very small. But I could not find information about this update.

Well, the link provides via Windows Update doesn’t works, and there is no further information about the update. The blog reader send me the following screenshot.

Intel-Systemtreiber-Update

On my Windows 7 machine, this update isn’t offered till now. Ok, let’s have a closer look, what we can find out.

Intel system driver update, let’s have a look into Update Catalog

Using the hints from my previous blog-post Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 6/28/2016’ I searched Microsoft Update Catalog for Intel Drivers. And I got a long list of updates.

Microsoft Update Catalog

The description indicates, the driver updates are offered for Windows 7, 8, 8.1, and the corresponding  Windows Server versions. The update size doesn’t indicates, that it will be some important driver.

Inspecting the .cab file

I’ve downloaded the .cab file of one update and inspected it under Windows 7 within Explorer (just double click the .cab file).

Intel-Systemtreiber-Update Inhalt

The file lists shows that there are .inf files and some catalog files, their names indicates, it will be for new CPUs (Broadwell, Haswell) and for some hardware components. Inspecting the .inf file gave me a clue what’s in.

; ************************************************************
; ************************************************************
; ** Filename: AvotonUSB.inf **
; ** Abstract: Assigns the null driver to devices **
; ** for yellow-bang removal and **
; ** brands Intel(R) devices **
; ************************************************************
; ************************************************************

The optional update contains null drivers for several hardware components on main boards. The .inf files contains strings like:

„Intel(R) 6 Series/C200 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller – 1C26“

and some device IDs are set:

[INTEL.NT]
%PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_1C26Desc%=Intel_EHCI.Dev.NT,PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_1C26
%PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_1C2DDesc%=Intel_EHCI.Dev.NT,PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_1C2D

The .inf files for new CPU chip sets contains a list of device ids for drivers, needed to support the CPU chipset.

Final thoughts – and should I install it?

My conclusion: The purpose of these null drivers is, just define device IDs for several components on a main board and show the related „Intel(R)“ branding within device manager. I guess, it’s a kind of placeholder, in case Microsoft ships device driver updates in future.

What I haven’t understood till now: Why the update from August 2016 is released now, in December 2016. My first impression was: you can install this update, but it doesn’t harm, if you hide it in Windows Update. The .inf files updates some device ID settings within your Windows machine – what would be a good idea at a first glance.

So my first conclusion was: Installing the update shall doesn’t change anything – because the null drivers contains no functionality. But that’s only half of the truth! If a device with a given device ID is already supplied with a driver, the null driver will wipe this functionality.

  • And I found a case here, where the optional update replaced an already installed and needed SMBus driver – so the user was no more able to read its DIMM temperature, using Intel Desktop Utilities.
  • A 2nd incident has been reported as a user comment within my German blog post. The user reported, that his Wi-Fi adapter stalled after installing this optional update.

So my final recommendation is: Hide this update, if you are not sure, that it won’t harm your system.

Similar articles:
Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 6/28/2016’
Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 8/19/2016’
Windows 7/8.1: Optional INTEL System driver updates


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12 Responses to Windows: optional update ‘Intel – System – 8/19/2016’

  1. mynameworthnothing says:

    Appreciate the digg in , Thanks !

  2. Pingback: Don’t install this Windows patch: Intel System 8/19/2016 12:00:00 AM… | Windows News

  3. win 7 user says:

    Thanks for your work here. Good job sir.

  4. Stuart Clayton says:

    Thanks for the info. I won’t install this one.

  5. Brian says:

    I installed this update and it disabled my TouchPad, which I thought would be fixed after restarting. Upon restarting I now have no TouchPad or keyboard. I’m running windows 8.1 and now have no access to my computer.

  6. Gary McCaughey says:

    It wiped out my Wi-Fi and I can NOT enable it again!

    Sony laptop Win7Pro

  7. Fredrik says:

    It disabled my SM bus service on my X1 thinkpad and made my bluetooth mouse not waking up after idle or reconnect.
    Unfortunately I did not read up that it cannot be uninstalled.
    On this particular computer windows recovery was disabled.
    I use a wireless USB mouse now. 🙂
    I tried downloading thinkpad chipset drivers from lenovo (version 9) but they seem to not improve the setup.

  8. Chris Williams says:

    After installing this “update” on my Win 8.1 Netbook, I found that I had no audio device installed (the speaker icon had a red X against it) and my SD memory card would not appear in Windows Explorer. There may have been other issues but I used System Restore to go back to just before the Windows Update. Fortunately, that seems to have fixed things. What is this “Update” doing on the Microsoft Update website?

  9. Alessandro says:

    I installed the update on my Asus T100. Now audio and touchscreen do not work. I tried to reinstall the corresponding drivers, I tried Intel driver updater, I tried any other idea I found on the web, but nothing worked. Any suggestion (a part from a system restore)?

  10. Ben says:

    This driver broke our HP elitebook 8470p Windows 8.1 x64 SOE. This driver caused a BSOD during install, and stopped the USB 3.0 ports from working in Windows. Uninstalling this driver and reverting to the HP supplied USB & chipset drivers fixed it.

    I’m glad I tested it first before pushing out to 100+ machines, it’s pretty poor that Intel and MS are pushing out updates that break things so badly

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