How to deploy DisplayLink Windows software within a corporation

This article describes how DisplayLink software can be deployed within an organisation.

Important Note: V8.0 software and Windows 10 Anniversary Update 2016 has made changes to the driver architecture, which changes the corporate deployment method. Please make sure you follow the applicable section for the software version you are deploying below.

DisplayLink offer a number of different ways that the software can be deployed within an organisation.

MSI file deployment

DisplayLink provide the MSI files for corporate install. These can be deployed using standard Microsoft tools, for example SCCM. The MSI files can be downloaded from:

Please follow the corporate install guide to ensure the MSI files are run with the correct command line switches.

It is not possible to install the MSI files just by double clicking them to install. If User Access Control (UAC) is enabled on the tested machine during an installation, the  audio and Ethernet drivers will silently fail to install due to an “access denied” error (even if a user is prompted for elevation).

If testing without using GPO, start the installation from command line with administrative privileges. The following commands can be used to install the MSI packages using msiexec on the command line:

V8.0 or later

Windows 7 - Windows 10 Threshold (Build 10.0.10586)
msiexec /i %SETUP%\DisplayLink_Win7-10TH2.msi /norestart /quiet

Windows 10 Redstone (Build 10.0.14393 and later)
msiexec /i %SETUP%\DisplayLink_Win10RS1.msi /norestart /quiet

V7.9 or earlier

msiexec /i %SETUP%\DisplayLinkCore.msi /norestart /quiet

msiexec /i %SETUP%\Setup.msi /norestart /quiet

Pros of an MSI driver deployment

  • Allows deployment to PCs where users do not have Administrator privileges
  • Allows remote management of software install, upgrade and uninstall

Cons of an MSI driver deployment

  • Could be deployed to PCs that are not connected to DisplayLink devices. However DisplayLink software will run in “minimal system impact” until a DisplayLink device is connected.
  • MSI installations cannot be upgraded using Windows Update

Deploying the Driver Package to the Windows driver store

The INF files, with the CAB files are also available to download through the corporate install portal:

This can be used to add the DisplayLink driver into a Windows system image and for the driver to be installed when the DisplayLink device is connected.

To deploy the driver package, it needs to be added to the Windows driver store. This can be done using the Windows command pnputil. More information on pnputil can be found here:

To add the DisplayLink driver to the Windows driver store:
  1. Extract the contents of the driver package
  2. Open a Command Prompt window (Run as administrator).
  3. Change directory to the extracted driver package files and execute the command:
    pnputil.exe –i –a DisplayLinkUsb.inf For Windows 7 - Windows 10 Threshold 2
    pnputil.exe –i –a dlidusb.inf For Windows 10 Anniversary Update onwards
  4. The “-i” option is needed to ensure the DisplayLink software is installed after the USB driver is installed.
This should show that the Driver package has been added successfully.
Alternatively, the DisplayLink software can be added to the Windows driver store by running the DisplayLink setup executable with the command line switch -stageDrivers eg:

setup.exe -stageDrivers

Pros of deploying the Driver Package to the Windows driver store

  • DisplayLink software is only installed once a DisplayLink device is connected to a PC.
  • Enables Windows to find the DisplayLink driver even when not connected to the Internet
  • Can be used alongside Windows Update to update drivers.

Cons of deploying the Driver Package to the Windows driver store

  • Requires the user to have Administrator privileges to complete the DisplayLink software installation

Corporate Deployment and Windows update

The DisplayLink software is also deployed on Windows update. When Windows sees the USB device, it will search Windows update for an updated driver and will download and install a newer version if available. This is standard Windows update behaviour.

This is often undesirable in an organisation where you want to control the version of DisplayLink software on the computer. Therefore, to avoid this, Windows update should be disabled on the client computers. A description of how to do this is here:

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