Tags: AMD, ATI, catalyst, drivers, file, time-saver
UPDATE 2: Instead of running the initial installer, you can use 7zip to browse and extract only the the .dl_ files you want, basically a much more sane step 1 and 2.
UPDATE: To expand every file in the current directory, type ‘expand -r *‘ and you’ll save a ton of time.
Since this comes up pretty much at least once a month on forums, I might as well write down the steps for reference. I assume you’re running Windows of course.
For leaked betas, usually you would skip step 1 since they come in an archive instead of an .EXE installer. Let’s take a look at the 12.8 WHQL package for Windows Vista/7/8 in this example.
Step 1: Run 12-8_vista_win7_win8_64_dd_ccc.exe and it will display a temporary path where it will extract the installation files. If you want, you can change it to something like H:\12-8\ for example. Note this path down as we’ll need it next, click ‘install‘ and once the Catalyst Install Manager appears, cancel it.
Step 2: If you go to the temporary folder from step 1, you should see files like setup.exe and some folders like Bin64, Config, Images, and Packages. Navigate into the \Packages\Drivers\Display\W86A_INF\ folder and then hold shift+right click the B143900 folder. In the context menu you should see ‘Open Command Window Here‘ so select that and now you should have a command prompt sitting in the location of the driver files.
Every file that ends with a _ will require you to expand it so that it can be usable as an actual file. For example, let’s expand atiumdag.dl_. Type ‘expand atiumdag.dl_ atiumdag.dll‘ (press enter to execute the command obviously) and you should now have the complete .DLL file appear in the B143900 folder.
That’s the gist of it, now you can copy atiumdag.dll to a game folder or just keep it for archival purposes in case you need it in the future. This is a much quicker way to test or use different driver versions without installing whole packages for the system. It’s quite handy when a certain game is known to work better on a specific driver version, simply hack up your own fix and you’re done.
Tip: In the command prompt window, you can press TAB to auto complete text, so if you type ‘atiu’ then hit TAB, it will automatically fill in the rest of the filename. If there are multiple files with the same beginning, just keep pressing TAB to cycle through them.
Some Useful Vista/7/8 .DLLs
atiumdag.dll – dx9 32bit
atiumd64.dll – dx9 64bit
atioglxx.dll – opengl 32bit
atio6axx.dll – opengl 64bit
atigktxx.dll / atig6txx.dll – additional 32bit / 64bit opengl files that may help fix very specific games if the above does not
aticfx32.dll + atidxx32.dll – dx10+ 32bit
aticfx64.dll + atidxx64.dll – dx10+ 64bit
Most games are 32bit so you would almost always be dealing with those files. Plus this technique of using a driver file from a specific package works for applications as well. Let’s say your 64bit Photoshop always crashes when opengl is enabled on every driver after 10.4. You would expand atio6axx.dll from 10.4’s package, since you know it works fine, and place it where the 64bit photoshop.exe is located.
Finally, if you’re legacy like me, you can’t really use newer files where support for your card is dropped. The same is true for using files that were compiled before your graphics card was released. The code simply is not there and you can see it in the filesize difference.Last Modified: October 7th, 2013
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