Troubleshooting: Scanner Error “You need a WIA driver” in Windows 10 PC

Many Windows users get the following error message when connecting a scanner, printer, or other devices to a Windows computer:

You need a WIA driver to use this device. Please install it from the installation CD or from the manufacturer’s website and try again.

This error does not allow the computer to install the necessary driver for the device connected to it. In this article, we will look at some solutions that you can use to fix the error without much effort.

What causes WIA driver scanner error?

WIA, Windows Image Acquisition, is a driver model offered by Microsoft starting with Windows ME. The WIA driver allows graphics software such as Windows Scanner, Photoshop, to communicate with image processing equipment such as a scanner. If your computer is missing, outdated, or incompatible with the WIA driver, you may receive an error message “You need a WIA driver to use this device.

Follow the instructions below to install the correct and up-to-date WIA driver for your scanner and resolve the problem.

How to resolve the “You need a WIA driver” scanner error?

Reinstall the WIA driver

  1. Right-click on the Start button and select Device Manager, which will open a window.
  2. Click View > Show Hidden Devices if you do not see the Imaging Devices category in Device Manager.
  3. Then double-click Visualization Devices to expand this category.
  4. Right-click on the imaging device and select Uninstall Device.
  5. Then click Uninstall to confirm.
  6. Windows will automatically reinstall the WIA driver after restarting the platform.

Make sure that the Windows image acquisition service is enabled

  1. Right-click on the Start button and select Run.
  2. Type services.msc in the Open from Run field and select OK.
  3. Then double-click Windows Image Acquisition to open the window.
  4. Select Automatic from the Startup Type drop-down menu.
  5. Click the Start button.
  6. If the service is already running, click Stop. Then click Start to restart WIA.
  7. Click Apply to confirm the settings and click OK to close the window.

Updating the WIA driver

  1. Download and install the third-party driver update software.
  2. Run the software.
  3. Wait until all faulty drivers are detected.
  4. The third-party driver updater will now show you all the faulty drivers, and you will only have to select the ones you want to repair.
  5. Wait for the application to download and install the latest drivers.
  6. Reboot your computer for the changes to take effect.

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Go to Windows -> Settings-> Update and Security -> Troubleshooter.
  2. Find Hardware and Device, then click Run Troubleshooter.
  3. Troubleshooter will start scanning all devices on your Windows system, including your scanner, find the scanner error, and fix it automatically.

Windows Image Acquisition Service allows scanners and other imaging devices to interact with graphics software such as Photoshop. The full WIA driver error message is as follows: A WIA driver is required to use this device. Please install it from the installation CD or from the manufacturer's website and try again.

  1. Select the Start button, type Device Manager, and then select it from the list of results.
  2. Expand one of the categories to find the name of your device, then right-click (or click and hold) on it and select Update Driver Software.
  3. Select Automatically check for driver software updates.

  1. Download and install the third-party driver update program.
  2. Then run it in Windows.
  3. Click on the Scan Now button.
  4. If you are trying the free version, click the Update button next to the scanner driver to automatically download and install the correct driver version.