Yesterday DisplayLink released the latest driver v7.2 M0 for Windows. We’ve been testing it here at Plugable and so far the results are very positive. Among other things, we’re excited that it fixes a number of recent compatibility and performance issues found with Windows 8 Metro apps. We recommend downloading this driver version for all USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 Plugable display adapters and laptop docking stations, for all versions of Windows.
Download DisplayLink Windows Driver v7.2 M0
Note: The DisplayLink installer will uninstall older DisplayLink drivers, update firmware on the device, and install new drivers. This will result in a few minutes of on/off blank screens and Windows Plug and Play complaining about no driver in the middle of the process. Wait for the install to complete, and reboot to finish it off.
So far we’ve been able to confirm the following key fixes for this driver release:
- Fixed issues with Metro apps sometimes taking an extra 10-15s to open on any screen when DisplayLink drivers are installed. In our testing we experienced no delays opening Metro apps.
- Fixed an issue with a recent Chrome update causing the browser to hang when driver v7.1 is installed on the system. 7.2 is now compatible with the latest version of Chrome.
- Fixed an issue on Win 8 with Metro video playback apps not working when in the presence of DisplayLink driver. We were able to play Netflix and Hulu via the Metro app after upgrading to 7.2 (make sure to reboot after upgrade)
- 7.2 is now compatible with devices using the newer Intel Atom chipsets with PowerVR graphics (the Clovertrail and Medfield lines). These are typically on low-end Windows 8 tablets. Keep in mind that these PowerVR based devices have a total display size limitation (which includes the native screen) of 4096×4096, so will that’ll typically only be enough for 1 external monitor to be used.
- 7.2 also includes a re-vamped NIC driver and firmware for the UD-3000 docking station. In our testing we’ve hit one specific scenario that causes the dock to disconnect from the host machine – after we perform speedtest.net tests repeatedly, the upload speed eventually reaches 0, and connected displays begin to flash on and off. But we weren’t able to reproduce this problem through normal usage of the dock, even after downloading/uploading large files. We’re waiting to hear back from DisplayLink for further details on this issue.
- 7.2 M0 does not solve the existing problem where full-screen DirectX 11 games will not run in the presence of DisplayLink drivers (on any screen). Games must be run windowed (if they have that option), or DisplayLink drivers must be uninstalled and re-installed after.
DisplayLink lists the following fixes in the release notes for 7.2:
- Ethernet connection lost when setting MAC address to ‘not present’.
- Temporary screen corruption when changing mode from extend to clone.
- Some web-based video streaming services like Netflix may sometimes not work on DisplayLink screens.
- Ethernet packets corruption.
- On Windows XP sometimes DisplayLink monitors may remain in power save mode until replug after resuming computer from sleep.
- Ethernet packets with incorrect MAC address being sent from DisplayLink dock.
- Image quality very poor for high fps video.
- Metro applications on Windows 8 take up to 10 seconds to open.
- Blue screen when rebooting first time after installation of DisplayLink drivers.
- USB port stops responding after replugging DisplayLink device.
- Large frame sent over Ethernet using DisplayLink device trigger network errors.
- Wake On Lan doesn’t work on Windows 8.
- Ethernet doesn’t work after computer is resumed from sleep using Wake On Lan.
- Disabling Wake On Lan with magic packets is not honoured.
We’d appreciate any feedback you have on the 7.2 drivers. If you run into any issues just comment below or e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org, we’d be glad to help!
Two important Windows 7 compatibility notices, for users of DisplayLink devices:
1) A Windows update deployed by Microsoft on 2/27/2013 is leaving Windows systems in Basic mode, which then causes problems with older DisplayLink drivers prior to 6.3 M1, including the very common 5.6 M1 version. The particular update causing the breakage appears to be a Microsoft change to DirectX. When first released on the 27th, Microsoft had it as a “recommended” update so it was pushed out widely. Microsoft has now switched it to be an “optional” update. You can read discussion of the affects of the update here.
This problem is Windows 7 specific.
There are a couple options for solutions:
1) Install the latest DisplayLink drivers (currently 7.1 M1). You can download the latest DisplayLink drivers here.
2) Uninstalling the offending update individually. Here’s how.
3) Doing a system restore to 2/26/2013 or prior will solve the issue.
A separate problem, but one that appeared around the same time, is Google Chrome tabs hanging on load.
On Feb 22nd, Google Chrome updated to version 25.0.1364.97m. This version conflicts with any installed DisplayLink version 7.x drivers and higher, on Windows Vista and up. Google is working to fix this in a Chrome update, but until then you can work around the issue by passing the –disable-gpu flag to chrome. To do this, type “chrome” in the Windows start search box, but don’t hit enter. Then right click on “Google Chrome” and select properties. Enter the –disable-gpu parameter as the last part of the “Target” string (note that’s two dashes before the word disable!). Here’s what it looks like:
Please let us know if any problems persist after these new Microsoft and Google updates. Feel free to comment below. We’ll help however we can. Thanks!
Today DisplayLink released their new Windows Driver Version 7.1 M1 (7.1.45135.0). We’re excited to have this new driver out, as it fixes a number of last issues that let us recommend the latest 7.X drivers over the earlier 5.X and 6.X series drivers, on all versions of Windows. All of Plugable’s current and past USB 2.0 and USB 3.0 devices with a USB graphics function will work with this new driver.
Download the latest version of DisplayLink driver here.
This release has fixes for these issues which have affected a significant number of our users:
- DisplayLink driver versions starting with 7.0 could cause Flash to hang up and crash when running Chrome browser. Those problems are reported fixed in 7.1 M1
- nVidia GPUs with drivers dated Oct, 2012 or later would experience flashing screens and crashes. These problems are reported fixed in 7.1 M1 for some users, but not yet all
- Windows 8 Metro applications running on USB displays could come up with Window unpainted (Blue or black). Reported fixed in 7.1 M1
A number of significant issues on Windows remain:
- Windows 8 Metro apps playing protected video content will not play while the DisplayLink driver is installed (will show message in Window to upgrade graphics drivers). This is a difficult issue to solve because Microsoft has tightened DRM policies in Windows 8, and expect it may remain for some time.
- Some driver conflicts apparently remain between nVidia drivers from October 2012 and later, and DisplayLink. The new 7.1 M1 driver solves some of these issues, but not all. We’ve also seen examples where the very latest nVidia pre-release drivers resolve this issue. We’ll keep tracking this, and appreciate your problem reports and feedback.
In detail, DisplayLink lists these issues fixed in 7.1M1
- Microphone is shown as ‘Not plugged in’ after replugging DisplayLink device. (14345, 14431, 14463)
- In some cases uninstallation of DisplayLink Core Software doesn’t uninstall everything properly. (14617)
- UDP streaming using DisplayLink ethernet device is unreliable. (14678)
- Sometimes VGA monitor attached to already connected DisplayLink device is not recognized correctly. (14699)
- Sometimes screens remain blank after DisplayLink monitors are resumed from suspend mode. (14703, 14743, 13669)
- Some video players showing content only on half of the screen. (14790)
- On some systems with nVidia GPU Desktop Window Manager is crashing causing Windows to drop to Basic Mode. (14942)
- Some Metro apps on Windows8 show a blank blue screen. (14955)
- Sometimes Chrome web browser is responding very slowly and Flash plug-in crashes. (15014)
- Sometimes DisplayLink monitor shows white noise instead of content when changing mode to clone while playing video. (15030)
We welcome any experiences or questions below. If you have a Plugable product and have any problems at all, just email your Amazon order # to email@example.com and we’ll be happy to help. Thanks!