Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
Many hardware add-ons come with installation CDs. Some need the additional software, some actually do not. The trick is guessing what's really needed.
I recently purchased a refurbished Samsung monitor. it came without a manual, which I in turn downloaded, but read that I also need a CD to complete installation? I have it up and running on my PC, so do I in fact need the CD?
This is one of those things that, in all honesty, frustrates me from time to time. Many hardware vendors have taken to including CDs with their equipment that is supposedly required prior to attaching the hardware.
The problem is that sometimes it's not.
And sometimes it is.
So how's the average user supposed to know the difference?
Why would they say it's required when it's not really? I can think of a few reasons:
To install additional utilities and software you don't really need, but that the manufacturer gets paid for. Demo software and toolbars often fall into this category.
To offer software that, while not required, takes advantage of your new hardware in ways that you may, or may not, already be able to do with your existing software.
To install software that indeed is not actually required, but directly interacts with your new hardware, perhaps making it somewhat easier to configure and use.
To install software or drivers that are, in fact, required to operate the device to it's full potential.
Now, in your case, I've never run into a case where a display device, a monitor, required any additional software to be used. I'd just plug it in and use it. When it comes to displays, the devices that often do require additional software and drivers are the video cards that the monitor might be attached to. But rarely does the monitor itself even have software of its own, much less require it.
My particular pet peeve is routers. They'll often come with dire warnings covering the network connections that you must install the software first.
No, you don't. At least not in any case I've ever seen.
Personally, I rip off those warnings, file the CD somewhere and install my router without any additional software. And it just works.
So, again, why the CD? And why the dire warnings?
I obviously can't speak for all router manufacturers, but my hope is simply this: it's a customer service / customer experience thing. Routers are somewhat magical devices to most folks, and including software that can walk you through the setup, and perhaps even diagnose issues, could be a valuable addition. It probably cuts down on customer support calls as it helps more people install the device more successfully.
But required? Not likely.
So how do you know?
Sadly, in many cases you don't, in which case following the manufacturer's instructions remains the best course of action.
But when it comes to monitors: I'd just plug it in and use it.
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