Odd USB problem with new devices

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Nick Scott

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Dec 11, 2001
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Here's a weird one -

Dell Dimension 5150.
Windows XP Home SP2

All existing USB peripherals (inc MFP inkjet and ADSL modem) work fine, so its not a hardware problem.

Plug in a new USB device to any USB port on the PC and it fails to load drivers for it, even something as simple as a memory stick, that it should automatically recognise and load without needing drivers. It runs the "new hardware found" wizard but that fails, and you get a message that Windows was unable to locate the correct software for the device. Device Manager shows it as a Flash USB disk with a yellow exclamation mark.

If you plug the memory stick into the USB port on the Dell MFP printer it loads fine and is mounted as a drive, exactly as if it was in a normal USB port.

I found that the HID access service was disabled and had to extract the files for it from the SP2 CD to get that to load with Windows again, but that hasn't made any difference to this problem.

Anyone else had this? Any suggestions gratefuly received - although I'd rather not just "reinstall Windows" as there is over 16 GB of data in 5 user profiles to back up first.
 
Joined
Jan 8, 2007
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25
I had a similar problem on an Acer E360 - AMD64 x2 3800, 2GB. It would not recognize new USB hardware and it would only process current ports at USB1.1 speed. Even though I had the correct drivers in the OS directory, they wouldn't load - only the 1.1 drivers would load. After many weeks of frustration, wherein I was advised to do a complete reinstall from the crappy restore disks, in desperation and as a last resort, I installed a PCI USB2.0 card. Suddenly the OS recognized all new hardware and all USB ports were running at 2.0 speeds. I have no idea what that was about. How about reinstalling SP2, as this is where the USB corrections were supposed to be finalized?
 

Nick Scott

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Thanks Reba

I'll try both of those and see what happens. Checking Technet and the MSKB the only suggestions were to uninstall all the USB root hubs and let Windows PnP them again, but adding a PCI card seems more likely to cause all the files to be refreshed.
 

JohnWill

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Oct 19, 2002
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106,726
First step, Start, Programs, Accessories, System Tools, System Restore. Create a restore point and name it something like "Before USB Fix". This is to bail you out if something goes wrong during the following process and makes things worse.

Create a file with NOTEPAD containing the following lines and save it as FIX.REG
-------------------------- Use text after this line --------------------------------
REGEDIT4

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment]

"DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES"="1"
-------------------------- Use text before this line --------------------------------

Double click on FIX.REG and say yes to the Merge Into Registry question.

Unplug ALL USB devices.
Open Device Manager.
View, Show Hidden Devices.
Uninstall all devices under USB Controllers.
Uninstall all devices under Disk Drives that you know are not present.
Uninstall all devices under Storage Volumes. Say no to any reboot prompts until you are finished. Also, if a Storage Volume doesn't uninstall, ignore it and move to the next one.
If you have a yellow ? with unknown devices, uninstall all of the entries there as well.

When this is done, reboot TWICE.

Reconnect the USB devices and see if they're recognized properly.

NOTE: If you have a USB keyboard and/or mouse, you'll have to modify the instructions and leave enough parts for those to function. I don't have one yet, so I haven't had time to modify the instructions.
 

Nick Scott

Thread Starter
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Messages
1,818
Thanks John

From the confident way that you gave that answer it sounds like you have seen this problem before. Was your problem the same as mine? And if so once you had done the fix, did you have to reinstall drivers for things like modems or printers on USB ports?

I will definitely give it a go.
 

JohnWill

Retired Moderator
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
106,726
You shouldn't have to re-install drivers, though occasionally I've had to install a driver after the "treatment". It's not uncommon for Windows to get confused about USB mass storage, cleaning out all it's memory of existing device parameters frequently cures it. If it does something worse, that's what the restore point is for. :D
 
Joined
Jul 15, 2002
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Nick, I had the exact same problem as yours and the only thing that worked was to do a complete reinstall! Everything else I tried failed. Did you finally solve your problem and if so, how. I certainly would like to know what to do in case this ever happens again. And does anyone have any idea as to what would cause something like this in the first place?
 
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