You’d think that something like this would be obvious, but it’s good when a high profile blogger brings up the problem. If you think that just clicking Install everytime Windows Update tells you to will get you everything you need, you’re quite mistaken. Microsoft only serves up drivers that the vendors have provided to them, and in the case of Windows 7, only those that have passed the approval process.
It doesn’t necessarily tell you that, though. So you’re left thinking that if Update has no updates for you, you’ve got the most recent. And that’s not true. You’ve got the most recent that Microsoft has provided. If you head off to the vendor’s site you’re often going to find a more recent version.
Disclaimer : If I haven’t mentioned it in the past, I work for DriverAgent (http://www.driveragent.com), whose flagship product specializes in exactly this service. We do go out and crawl the vendors, keeping a database of the latest drivers for everything we can get our hands on.