How to Fix USB Port Problems

There are many causes of a USB not working properly, which makes using them a pain in the neck. This article will give you some information on how to fix USB port problems.
Often, when you plug in a Universal Serial Bus (USB)-compliant device, like a mouse, keyboard or even a flash drive, either there's no response from the computer, or you get a message 'USB Device Not Recognized' along with a popping sound. Why does this happen? There may be many reasons for this, like virus infection, driver, connection, power problem, etc. There are a few ways in one can understand how to fix USB port problems and also avoid encountering this error again in future. Note that there some common reasons for such a situation to arise. These are summarized below.

Virus Infection

This is the most common reason. Systems infected by computer viruses, worms, malware, or spyware software tend to make the user's life miserable by causing these type of troubles. Even if you find that your system is absolutely clean of malicious software, make sure that if inserting a flash drive, it is also void of such infections. Use a licensed and updated antivirus software, which not only keeps your system protected, but also scans and cleans any external memory device.

Problems With the Device Driver

This is another common cause. In case of the usb port not working, keep in mind that there is no trouble with the hardware, but the driver software may have a bug. In computers which have regularly-updated anti-virus software, this is the most common cause. To fix this problem, just follow the most commonly-used method of uninstalling and reinstalling the driver. For this, go to the device manager by right clicking on the 'My Computer' icon and selecting properties, or directly go to the 'Control Panel' by clicking on 'Start' button. In the device manager, select the 'system devices' in which you will see the 'USB root hub'. Right click on it, and choose the uninstall option. Now, reinstall the driver from the driver CD received with the computer motherboard.

Faulty Connecting Cables

If you have a desktop computer, most likely there will be a port on the front panel of the cabinet. For this provision, the entire card is never relocated to the front side, only extension cables are used to provide a connection at a convenient place. Many a time, a fault may crop up in these extension cables. Check the connectivity of the cables either yourself by using a multimeter or just call your computer vendor.

Verify Power to the Device

There are a few devices, like high-capacity external hard drives, which need power to be supplied from an external source. Check if you have switched on the power and if the supply cables have a proper internal connectivity.

Faulty Device

These flash drives are normally very delicate, and even a small impact can lead to minor faults, which in turn may cause malfunctioning of the device. So, remember to handle them devices with utmost care.

Scan Hardware

Sometimes, your device may not have been recognized at all. For this, you need to use the Device Manager to scan for hardware changes. For this, click 'Start', then click 'Run'. Type 'devmgmt.msc', then click 'OK'. When the Device Manager opens, click your computer and highlight it. Click 'Action', and then, click 'Scan for hardware changes'. After this, your device may be recognized and may start working.

There may be cases where the above remedies may not come to your rescue. Even after installing an antivirus software or reinstalling the drivers and doing the remaining checks, you may still encounter this problem. There is another crude, but a simple way you can try, which has proved fruitful in most cases. Simply remove the device, shut down the system, unplug the power supply, wait for a few minutes, and then reboot the system. What happens here is that when the system is shut down and rebooted, the chip on the motherboard that controls various hardware will reload all the drivers including the USB driver, which now starts recognizing the device.

So, the next time you're caught in such a circumstance, first try the last remedy. You may or may not need the other ways to solve this problem.
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