USB Ports Not Working? Here’s How to Diagnose and Fix It

Christian Cawley Updated 12-10-2018

Are your USB ports are not working? To fix it, you need to diagnose the root of the problem. This article explains a quick way to get your ports working again.


USB Port Not Working? Give a Physical Examination

This is a picture of USB drives plugged into a laptop.

Before proceeding, note that you’ll need to be sure that it is the port that is faulty, rather than the device you’re connecting.

To establish which is the problem, connect the device to another USB port. If it works, then the problem is the first port; if the device remains undetected, then you have a faulty device. If you can’t reformat the USB drive, it will need replacing.

If there’s a problem with your USB port, you’ll notice it thanks to either of these things:

  • The device fails to be detected
  • Your operating system displays an error message relating to the device (removing and replacing the device might solve this)

Either way, you should investigate the state of the USB port. Has it been damaged in any way? The safest way to find out is to shut down your PC or laptop.


Next, look at the USB port. Is it clean and dust free? If you’re using a desktop, or the USB port is at the back of a PC tower, there’s a chance that dirt, dust, and general detritus might have become embedded in the port.

Dust will reduce airflow, causing your system to overheat. It is particularly damaging to laptops, where overheating can reduce performance in seconds How to Fix an Overheating Laptop: 3 Key Tips and Solutions The greatest threat to your laptop is overheating. Here's how to cool down your laptop and prevent it from getting too hot. Read More . Clean out the drive with a can of compressed air. A vacuum cleaner might also prove handy here.

Finally, grab a USB cable (or flash drive, whatever) and gently wiggle it around. If the drive is moving and feels loose—typically this will be up and down—then you have a problem.

Fix Broken USB Hardware

We’ll look at some software fixes in a moment, but first, what if the USB port is loose?


The ports are soldered to a board within your computer. This may be the motherboard, but is typically a secondary printed circuit board (PCB). With regular use, ports can become movable, at times completely unattached.

Often, this is down to the shape of the connected USB devices. While small Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and even new USB flash memory are unlikely to put any significant strain on the port’s physical connection, older “stick” memory drives are a different story. So are USB cables. Their size and associated weight act as a sort of lever, contributing to USB ports working loose.

Replacing a USB port isn’t easy. On a desktop computer, you may be able to find a replacement board that can be slotted in without too much effort. However, if you’re using a laptop, it’s going to take a soldering iron. Here’s an example of what you might need to go through to re-solder the USB connector back into your laptop:

Of course, you could take this to an expert for repair, but there will be associated costs with this. If you want to do it yourself, make sure you know how to solder Learn How to Solder, with These Simple Tips and Projects Are you a little intimidated by the thought of a hot iron and molten metal? If you want to start working with electronics, you're going to need to learn to solder. Let us help. Read More . If you’re not sure, check out the software fixes first.


Can Restarting a Computer Fix Broken USB Ports?

“Have you tried turning it off and back on again?”

This old tech support standby is well-known for a reason: it works!

With your unrecognized USB device correctly inserted into the suspect USB port, restart your computer. Once the operating system has rebooted, it should detect the USB device. If not, it’s worth looking at the device in the Windows device manager.

Check Device Manager on Windows 10

Begin by right-clicking on the Start menu and selecting Device Manager.


Open the Device Manager in Windows 10

The Device Manager lists the devices attached to your computer, grouped into categories. It’s arranged alphabetically, so you should find Universal Serial Bus controllers towards the end of the list.

Expand the list, and look for the USB Host Controller. The device you’re trying to find may have a longer title, but it will feature those three words.

Uninstall the USB host controller

No USB Host Controller? This may explain why your USB device doesn’t work. To fix this, click on the Scan for hardware changes button on the toolbar. This will commence a check of all connected hardware, and in most cases will detect the USB port and anything connected to it.

If this still hasn’t worked, it’s worth taking the time to reinstall the USB Host Controllers. Right click on the USB Host Controller items in turn, and select Uninstall on each. Wait while they’re uninstalled, then reboot your computer.

As Windows restarts, the USB Host Controllers will be automatically reinstalled. This “refresh” can help to fix problems with the USB port.

Note that if you’re using a USB mouse or one with a USB receiver, it will be disabled while the USB Host Controllers are uninstalled.

Try Disabling the USB Selective Suspend Feature

If power management settings are overriding your USB controller, this will impact the detection of devices. This is particularly relevant if you use a laptop. If you’re keen to keep power usage low, you might have set a low power option on your Windows 10 desktop.

USB Selective Suspend is a power saving setting that cuts power to the USB device, thereby reducing battery use.

The feature usually works well, but at times makes it look as if there is a problem with your USB ports.

Disable USB selective suspend

Fix this by opening the Windows Control Panel (it’s still in use… for now Why Microsoft Is Killing the Windows Control Panel The Control Panel is being decommissioned. In Windows 10, the Settings app has adopted most of its features in a more stylish and mobile-friendly interface. Is that really necessary? Read More ). This is best done by clicking Start and typing control panel. Click the corresponding result, then Hardware and Sound > Power Options. Here, click Change plan settings, then Change advanced power settings.

Here, find USB Settings and expand this to find USB selecting suspend setting. Change the drop-down menu to Disabled, then click Apply and OK to confirm. Reboot your PC to ensure this change is applied.

You’ve Fixed Your Broken USB Port!

As you can see, you have several options for repairing an unresponsive USB port. In most cases, it won’t be dead, and you’ll be able to fix it. Remember, when your USB port is not working, you need to:

  • Make a physical check
  • If necessary, make a physical repair to the port
  • Reboot Windows
  • Check the Device Manager, uninstall the USB Host Controller
  • Disable USB Selective Suspend power saving option

USB ports aren’t the only potential weak spots on your computer. Looking after your hardware will reduce potential failures, and you can save a lot of money if you know how to test your PC for failing hardware How to Test Your PC for Failing Hardware: Tips and Tools to Know We show you computer hardware and PC diagnostic tests to help you scan your system and spot failing hardware before it's too late. Read More .

Related topics: Flash Memory, Troubleshooting, USB Drive.

Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

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  1. tbyers31
    May 6, 2020 at 8:23 pm

    Great article! Recently i started seeing where the 2nd of my two Intel EHCI USB controllers was showing up in Device Manager as failed. I tried disabling, updating drivers (it would say I have the most up to date drivers), and uninstalling/reinstalling. Nothing works. Is it a hardware problem? Thanks,

  2. Wes Phelan
    May 24, 2019 at 3:21 am

    5/23/2019 Love this site– extremely easy to navigate and a lot of stuff to see!

  3. michelmmm
    March 5, 2019 at 4:30 am

    You've guessed it, I'm here because my usb3 refuses to work. It's been working on and off and often I see a pop up msg "you're hardware would be faster if connected to a faster usb"! Although I'm pretty sure it was...
    I added this 2 prts. USB 3 to a maybe a 10 years old MB/pc. I was reasonably happy with it I have a 2 hdd Volans bay and a 4 usb prt. connected on it. Apart the occasional mentioned msg it was ok but sometimes amissed.
    Recently after a storm I lost my power supply and also I found the network adapter port , actually no internet. (Here I like to mention the silly diagnostic and even forum help... "ethernet cable unplugged, not plugged properly or broken"! So much time wasted with cable checking etc. not a mention about the port. Then forum (ok fora!) There too not a hint about the defective port , but software update uninstall... My repair shop tried quickly some of those and establish a new port was and is the answer...!) Sorry about veering of topic although it seems to have some similarity. And back to my USB 3.
    After the storm it was a on and off situation and I could not pinpoint the issue.
    Yes I'm tempted to buy a new one but would like to investigate a little further.
    I can see it in the Devices management, There it's said to 'work well ' It says the driver is up to date, but it's not working so I use my usb 2 ports and at least then my 'msg' about using a faster device is legit.
    I noticed one of the comment is rather abrupt re uninstalling the usb but a warning that it may impact your mouse if plugged in that USB.... "Ridiculous"! Well at least it is a fair warning. I thought it would have been a much to ask for a work around that problem. And if the author knew the answer to post it rather flying off the handle...

  4. Dan
    February 17, 2019 at 10:27 pm

    Uninstalling the USB Host Controller drivers (I had one for USB 3.0 and another for 3.1) and then restarting my PC fixed the issue - all 10 are now working fine!

  5. Kort
    November 18, 2018 at 8:06 pm

    Thank you! This worked perfect.

  6. MUO Sucks
    March 13, 2018 at 9:06 pm

    How ridiculous. At no point does your pathetic excuse for an author explain how to do all of this when your mouse and keyboard are USB-driven. Did you even try to think about this bs before you wrote it???

    • ddd
      June 19, 2018 at 12:35 pm

      there are other types of mouse and keyboards too in pc and if you use laptop there come preinstalled. Beside in your case you should just go to tech so it shouldn't matter

    • Jake Smith
      August 19, 2018 at 11:41 pm

      Oh no! The author didnt answer my questions so I need to berate them and act like a baby!

      How about this bud: Take your machine to a repair shop, and when you're done with that you can use your now working PC to find a life coach to teach you how to act like an adult.

    • Kort
      November 18, 2018 at 8:07 pm

      It says for laptop so then it would only be for a laptop that has a keyboard and mouse pad attached.

  7. deric
    January 19, 2018 at 1:48 pm

    I learned when soldering small laptop connections you need to use very fine gauge solder and a good iron. I had to get my fine gauge solder online. Also wipe the iron with a wet sponge or rag before each attempt to keep it clean.

  8. Linda
    January 10, 2018 at 8:52 pm

    OMG are you kidding me? I have a brain concussion, but I watched from start to finish. I dropped my lap top 12 inches onto a wooden floor when I tripped over the cord which charging it. I have no money to pay a tech to do this. But this is so intimidating. My son -
    a brilliant IT - once soldering my lap top and he damaged the motheroard. How much does it cost to pay someone to repair my USB port.

  9. emily
    December 10, 2017 at 3:22 am

    A while back both of mine had stopped working, so I took it in to get fixed and it still didnt work. so i tried this and there was only one usb showing up on my device manager. I uninstalled and restarted, one doesnt work at all, and the other recognizes that i plugged something in but it says my device isnt working properly. i tried 4 different flash drives and it still doesnt work.

  10. Osman M.
    November 10, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    thank you so much! deleting all usbs and then restarting the pc worked for me!

  11. SJ
    October 11, 2017 at 7:36 am

    This saved me a ton of time thanks! Solved my problem

  12. Asimakis Leros
    August 19, 2017 at 4:06 pm

    Two of the USB ports were dead. I uninstalled the USB host controller and restarted the computer. Now none of the ports function any more. I cannot even use keyboard or mouse! How can I reinstall ? It seems impossible!

  13. RCD
    August 6, 2017 at 9:13 pm

    Just lost my USB 3 port. Read all this above and same info elsewhere. As a last idea I simply unplugged the USB patch cable inside the computer box from the motherboard and reattached. The device manager panel which was still open blinked and viola. The Port was back on. May have been the pins at the motherboard needing a rub by unplugging to get a good solid connection. My machine is 4 years old.


  14. Amanda
    June 3, 2017 at 6:12 am

    Thank you for this! I was able to get all 4 USB ports on my desktop working after uninstalling the USB host controller and restarting. Overall, it took about 5 minutes. Thank you, thank you!

  15. Scott Morris
    April 29, 2017 at 3:00 am

    Sweet, that worked awesome for me. Uninstalled the unknown device in the device mangler and rebooted. Bam! Back in business :D

  16. Dinesh
    April 21, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    Thanks a lot i solved my USB port issue, This information is very useful.

  17. Shubham Arya
    April 6, 2017 at 4:29 pm

    Thank you so much. I unistalled the host thing in the device manager and it worked. Looking forward to give you a treat. Lol.

  18. Steve Gamble
    February 3, 2017 at 3:54 am

    Ok I uninstalled the USB controller and then restarted my laptop but restart didn't reinstall the hardware. your instructions said that restart would force the laptop to find the change in hardware and reinstall it hopefully fully functioning. But it isn't even there. How do I reinstall it manually?

  19. Hedayatullah Hakimi
    January 8, 2017 at 5:10 am

    Please do not make complicated, start from small things, some time Keyboard buttons pressed. 2 buttons Alt+Shift were hang pressed.

    • michelmmm
      March 5, 2019 at 4:41 am

      Ha ha you should run a repair shop, charge peanuts for those repairs and for each press 2 buttons , yes charge $5 bucks and take the next one in that long queue waiting for miracles and you'd be on par with Bill Gate fortune...All the best.

  20. ed
    January 5, 2017 at 1:16 am

    Why don't we disable USB Selective Suspend feature from the Power Settings? Isn't it easier?

    • Skeptic
      August 22, 2017 at 6:18 am

      On my desktop there are 6 USB ports. Only one was functioning. I tried EVERYTHING and nothing helped.

      Tried what you suggested (disable USB Selective Suspend feature from the Power Settings) and In a second I had all my USB ports working. Brilliant. Thanks.

  21. KSchey
    December 29, 2016 at 7:38 am

    What happens if all the USB ports don't work (I can't use the any mouse on any of the USB ports and my computer lacks the PS/2 which means I can't access the device manager) and restarting the computer doesn't work. Whats my next move?

    • Heather
      February 20, 2017 at 10:54 pm

      I am having the same issue! Did you find anything that worked?

      • KSchey
        February 20, 2017 at 11:34 pm

        I shut down and restarted the computer a several times until the USB ports started working again. I never found a reasonable answer to how to handle this situation. The only reasonable explanations that I could find that explains this situation are 1) a failure in the motherboard that controls the USB ports, 2)the USB drivers weren't loading properly.

  22. Wesley Skworzec
    December 22, 2016 at 5:33 pm

    I tried what was suggested to no avail. thank you for the time and effort you put into helping us. Better luck in the future.

  23. Warren
    December 8, 2016 at 11:16 am

    Thank you ....... my problem was resolved at the uninstalling of my USB Host controllers and restarting my computer stage of your most comprehensive but easy to follow solution (for someone who doesn't know a lot about computers).
    Just wanted you to know that I appreciate you taking the time to help out in this way and that you have made me a very much relieved and happy chappie. I had just purchased a faster 64gig USB 3.0 for $50 to play all of my music in the car only to find that my only USB 3.0 port on the computer was not working........ going gangbusters now :)

  24. Irene
    November 20, 2016 at 1:30 pm

    I only have Standard Open HCB USB host controller. I do not have anything that says all that series stuff. Is that what I should uninstall?

  25. Micciman
    November 11, 2016 at 4:50 pm

    I'm running Windows 10. My gamepad suddenly stopped working. After trying everything (except the soldering), I formated my PC, because when I unistalled my USB controller, I couldn't login to Desktop to reinstall it.
    After reinstalling my OS, every device on every port worked (mouse, keyboard, webcam, usb storage), except of my gamepad, so I assumed that it doesn't work. But when I connected it on another PC, it worked normally.
    Could it be that my USB Ports have a voltage problem?
    Could you suggest anything ele?
    My M/B is an ASUS P5Q

    • Anonymous
      May 27, 2018 at 5:24 pm

      Have you tried reinstalling the game pad driver itself. Most computers don’t have a default driver to read the data conning from the gameplay and gets confused worh the extra sets of buttons. It would be possible that the driver was corrupted or just confused while using it because of the crossfire of data and needs a reinstall

  26. MannyB
    November 3, 2016 at 12:57 am

    Thank you thank you thank you!! Back to doing my homework :D

  27. Jim
    October 24, 2016 at 8:08 am

    Good article.

  28. DJ
    October 21, 2016 at 2:15 pm


    I have USB problem.

    My laptop (Lenovo yoga 14, Windows 10) has 3 USB ports. Only one is 3.0 and about a month ago it started not recognizing things (mouse, drives ....). It would charge the phone without recognizing it as a device.

    Now I have followed your suggestions about registry key and it no longer even powers anything.

    I am very sure it is not a hardware problem. Also, just uninstalling the stuff in device manager and reinstalling does not work.

    What can I do?

    On another note, how to revert the changes I made in the registry. My computer seems to reduce battery life a lot.

    Thank you,

    • Stephen
      November 1, 2017 at 6:53 am

      I have Lenovo here to replace my motherboard on a regular basis. USB devices stop working on this one computer far to often and there. This seems absurd but it works. Now, though, I bought what appeared to be a bunch good quality usb WD My Passport drives. They work fine at first and the metal editions even have the best backup software I've ever used. However, each of the drives are failing after about a month. When almost every one of a drive fails, there is something fishy going on. I was happy to find these drives because the new versions are made out of a plastic making it look to be a toy. So far, the newer cheap looking models have not failed. I'm at a loss about what to do. The data recovery plans sold with external drives at Amazon are bogus and are too much dancing to get through. WD support recommends using the drive utilities that come with the drives. But since the drives are not recognized by Windows or the utilities, this is an arrogant pretense at support. They freely offer RMA to return the bad drives for replacement with refurbished drives that others already returned.
      The only thing I notice is some of the same type drives have WES drivers, I think and others don't. The WD techs either are not informed about the product or are not given the time necessary with a customer to go into any attempt to fix the problems.
      When the little data online showed major failure rates with Seagate portable drives in recent years, I felt safer with the WD drives. These two brands are not suitable for backup of needed data. HGST and Toshiba are looking much better and worth trying. Even after acquiring Hitachi, WD has kept hands off so these HGST drives are a good alternative. In addition, a well researched and tried cloud service may be an essential addition to all backups. I don't know about many cloud backups but steer clear of Carbonite at all costs. It doesn't work backing up and downloads empty zip files upon restoration.

    • Stephen
      November 1, 2017 at 7:06 am

      One quick but important thought about Windows 10 and usb problems. Try to get some info about how services should be set to start and which should be allowed to start. I discovered this accidentally but if set proberly, usb devices can start to work again. It's hard to understand how Microsoft managed to reach this final edition of Windows and included so many problems that had long ago been resolved. What's needed is a venture capitalist to finance the long term update of Win 7, an OS that works and Microsoft is ready to dump tomorrow. As more people are forced to give up Win 7 and give into Win 10 as a service, keep your eyes on the ads that Microsoft is priming the company to deliver on a non stop basis.

  29. Gabe
    October 18, 2016 at 11:34 pm

    Uninstalling the USB host controller and restarting worked for me. Thanks, MUO!!!!!!

  30. David
    October 16, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    Hello, after doing the steps my removal storage is gone. Please can you help me

  31. Noriel Hernandez
    October 14, 2016 at 10:32 am

    Hello, I have a notebook and all usb ports and the ethernet adapter are not working. I can't reformat it since it is not working on POST. What should I do? Thanks

  32. GB
    October 12, 2016 at 9:04 pm

    How do we do these things if we need a mouse to navigate the computer. I need to plug the mouse or the receiver for a wireless mouse into a port and the ports don't work.


    • FN
      October 21, 2016 at 2:37 pm

      Use the keyboard to navigate:
      >Tab key for focussing on main menu items in a group, or first item/button in a group.
      Shift+Tab to back Tab.
      >ALT+Menu Bar Item eg Alt+F for options under the File Menu
      >Space Key for checking/unchecking checkboxes
      >Arrow keys for most linear movement across menus
      >Arrow keys for expanding/collapsing menu lists like the ones in the Registry. Left Arrow to collapse, Right Arrow to expand. Then of course the up and down arrows.
      >Backspace to go back on windows explorer (like in folder navigation) menus
      >And of course Enter and Windows keys

  33. Alan Trinder
    October 10, 2016 at 5:02 am

    I am having a problem that one of my usb ports will not work with a thumb drive, I can se the drive but any action results in the message that there is no drive there. Other things such as my mobile phone and camera work fine and data transfer is no problem. Windows 10 on a DELL XPS

  34. Tyler Perkins
    September 21, 2016 at 10:47 am

    My USB port issue is a bit unique. I have a Samsung ATIV Book 8 that has 4 ports (2x3.0 and 2x2.0). The two USB 2.0 ports are not working properly with regular plug and play devices such as external HDD, wireless mouse, cell phones, etc. But I do have an external HDD with it's own power supply. That particular device does work fine when the power is on. The USB wireless mouse gives me the "usb device not recognized" every few seconds. But other external HDD's don't register at all. In my registry, though there is no single section for "USB" under 'Services", there are several, I had already turned off the "Selective Suspend" feature you mentioned. Given that the self-powered device works fine, I don't believe this is a hardward issue and all of my "Plug and Play" defaults are set appropriately as far as I can tell. Hope you can help. Thank you.........

  35. zmechys
    September 13, 2016 at 8:11 pm

    Until recently, I've had no issues with my USB ports.
    A few days ago, I smelled some burned plastic and my computer "froze". I could not restart it/could not pass the "beep" sound. I took it to the repair shop.
    After repairs, my computer works fine but...
    Now, my computer recognizes the USB mouse, keyboard, mp3 player but
    does not work with USB Audio Interfaces/does not see the Audio Interface, and there is not Red (Power) light on the Audio Interface/Sound Card.
    Before that "burned" issue, I had no problems whatsoever connecting the USB Audio Interfaces.
    In short.
    My USB ports work for the mouse but not for the USB Audio Interface/Sound Card.
    Any help?

  36. Gordan
    September 13, 2016 at 2:16 pm

    A follow up question:

    How does creating a Registry Key for disabling Selective Suspend differ from disabling it via advanced Power settings described here:

    And does one interfere with the other? For instance now I have Registry Key "DisableSelectiveSuspend" set to 1 but when I visit advanced Power settings it shows it as 'Enabled'.

  37. Gordan
    September 13, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    I think creating a Registry Key just fixed the issue with my ports. However I need to ask what are the dangers of manually creating a Registry Key like that?

  38. BEHVB
    September 3, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    THANK YOU!!!!

  39. RegNovice
    August 28, 2016 at 3:11 am

    I upgraded to Windows 10 on my Dell Inspiron N7100. It seemed to be working fine. Then I tried to install an external hard drive and it would not work properly and subsequently was not recognized. I uninstalled my USB controllers. Two of the four USB ports reinstalled on Restart and the other two (2.0 and eSATA/USB Combo) did not reinstall and now they do not work at all. I’ve tried to run Dell diagnostics to no avail (my computer model is not supported for Windows 10). My question: Is there any way to get these ports working again??

  40. RegNovice
    August 28, 2016 at 2:51 am

    My computer is a 64-bit Dell Inspiron N7110. If I want to create a USB Key to input DisableSelectiveSuspend, should I use the QWORD (64-bit) instead of the DWORD (32 bit) that you have in your instructions?

  41. Aktar Husen
    August 25, 2016 at 7:54 pm

    i already be a fan this website.very helpfull.keep it going

  42. Aktar Husen
    August 25, 2016 at 7:51 pm

    many many thanx. 2nd option working in my laptop.........again thank u

  43. Timmy
    August 25, 2016 at 6:45 pm

    Now I don't have either of my USB ports. They don't work at all!

  44. Sarah R.
    August 8, 2016 at 12:40 pm

    Thanks a lot

  45. donald ditsela
    August 5, 2016 at 7:03 am

    all ports not responding and the PC is not loading, it just stops at Disk check
    what can i do coz i cant access the PC ?

  46. Carol
    August 3, 2016 at 4:46 pm

    OMG THANK YOU SO MUCH! I don't know a lot about computers but I was able to get my USB ports working again thanks to your wonderful and helpful instructions! Thank you!!!

  47. justin zeng
    July 24, 2016 at 5:22 am

    Hi guys,

    I tired all the options above and still didn't work, not sure why.

    Finally I did a system restore and WHAAa it worked, now I have all the usb port back.

    Hope this help you guys.


  48. Claire
    July 13, 2016 at 9:17 am

    Hi! I'm just wondering whether this applies with laptops as well? Thank you.

  49. elsa
    July 12, 2016 at 2:04 pm

    Thank you, Guy McDowell!

  50. mori mori
    July 9, 2016 at 1:16 am

    the usb all 6 in my motherboard work on and off i tried the power saving thing it did not work,
    i got a a pci usb, but i does not work in the bios, how to six that?

  51. FloryNC
    June 25, 2016 at 10:08 pm

    Thank you very much for your timely and detailed reply. Here's an update: after posting my question and thinking more about your post on dead USB ports, I visited Fresco Logic's site to find the manufacturer's driver for the USB 3.0 port. I installed it, and now the 3.0 port works! Like the Norwegian blue parrot in Monty Python, it wasn't dead, it was pining (for the right driver). Now I can continue uploading my travel photos to iCloud (though the speed is glacial).
    Therefore, the situation of the 2.0 ports remains the same: they work for my peripheral keyboard and mouse, but not for flash drives. I decided to might try the same approach for the 2.0 ports that worked for the 3.0 port: go directly to the manufacturer's (Intel's) website and get the latest drivers there. Surprise: no drivers are offered for 2.0 USB ports.
    After reading your reply, I began to follow your suggestion about the hidden ports. I opened a command prompt and I entered the command (carefully proofread against your directions). Unfortunately, I received an error message. So Device Manager doesn't show any grayed-out items under USB, even when View/Hidden Items is turned on. I wasn't able to proceed. Have you any further suggestions?

  52. FloryNC
    June 23, 2016 at 1:24 am

    I'd like to thank you, too, for an exceptionally clear and concise article. It took me far out of my comfort zone, but gave me the confidence to follow your directions. I have checked my USB ports for physical damage; uninstalled and reinstalled the USB Host Controllers and restarted; and even established a USB key and turned off the USB Selective Suspend Feature (and restarted). There's been no change in the faulty ports. Before I buy a new computer, I'd like your opinion. Here are the details.
    I am using Win7 SP1. My ASUS U46E-BAL6 notebook, bought in Dec. 2011, originally had three functional USB ports: two 2.0 and one 3.0. The 3.0 port stopped operating months ago, but I just carried on with the others because I didn't need a 3.0 port. Now, with a USB 3.0 external drive and a 3.0 USB hub, I do.
    Neither Device Manager nor Windows Explorer sees the 3.0 port, and an inserted flash drive doesn't light up.
    Of the two 2.0 USB ports:
    The left-side port is seen by Device Manager, but not by Windows Explorer. However, it still powers my USB 2.0 mouse. Autoplay doesn't run when a flash drive is inserted.
    The right-side port is not seen by either Device Manager or Windows Explorer. However, the port still powers my USB 2.0 keyboard. Autoplay doesn't run when a flash drive is inserted.
    Both 2.0 ports formerly recognized flash drives, but now they don't. The upshot is that I can't plug in any flash drives (2.0 or 3.0) or 3.0 peripherals. This is seriously hampering my ability to get my vacation photos off a 3.0 flash drive, too. I've tried 2.0 flash drives as well, and all the flash drives work on my husband's computer (with USB 2.0 ports).
    My question: is it time for a new computer? I have previously had this computer checked over by our excellent local computer shop, but they had nothing to offer for dead USB ports. I could try to find another shop, but with three malfunctioning ports, I suspect the repair bill would be too big to be worthwhile. Your thoughts? Thank you again!

    • Guy McDowell
      June 24, 2016 at 4:06 pm

      There's one more thing you may want to try.
      Show and remove all hidden USB devices, and then try your ports again.

      Open a command prompt as Administrator.
      In the command prompt, type SET DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES=1 and press enter.

      Then, type devmgmt.msc and press Enter to open the Device Manager.
      Click on the View tab and select Show hidden devices.
      Expand the USB options.

      You'll see a bunch of options that are greyed out. Select and remove them all. You have to go one by one so it takes a little while.

      Once done, restart your computer and try your different USB devices in different ports.

      What this does is force the computer try to recognize your USB devices. If the ports work at all, it should re-install the drivers for these USB devices.

      If this doesn't work, it may be time to look at a new laptop. 5 years is considered a full life for a laptop.

  53. Mike
    June 18, 2016 at 5:38 pm

    Hi, I have similar problem with my usb ports. I forcibly removed my usb charger from the port and then all the five usb ports stopped working instantly. I came to realize that the mouse and the keyboard were not working as well. This means it affected the ps/2 ports. I checked the two front usb ports and they are working just fine. I'm very desperate now.
    Could you please help me repair my dead ports or suggest any solutions?
    Any solution is welcomed.

    • Guy McDowell
      June 21, 2016 at 7:48 pm

      What steps have you taken to try to figure this out, so far?

      • Mike
        June 25, 2016 at 1:24 pm

        I've done almost everything you said in your article. From uninstalling usb drivers to clean windows installation but still no luck. One I'm left with is the re-soldering part.

  54. Evelyn Champy
    June 13, 2016 at 12:21 am

    When i plug in my key board and mouse on my desktop it wont work. But when I plug in my charger it works. Help how can i fix?

    • Guy McDowell
      June 15, 2016 at 2:00 pm

      You'll probably need to take your computer to your local computer shop for this.

  55. TheAlexLoneWolf
    June 4, 2016 at 2:42 am

    I've followed the steps of "Disable Selective Suspend Feature" but when I get to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SYSTEM > CurrentControlSet > Services I cant find USB alone, the rest are USBXHCI, usbuhci, USBSTOR, usbser, usbprint, usbohci, USBHUB3, usbhub, usbehci, usbcir, usbccgp and USBAAPL64, and other services

    • Guy McDowell
      June 15, 2016 at 1:24 pm

      If the USB key doesn’t exist in your registry, it’s easy to create it. Just navigate to the services key, and in the toolbar click on Edit > New > Key. Call it USB.

      • TheAlexLoneWolf
        June 15, 2016 at 1:40 pm

        And so afterwords, follow the steps as if it was already there? (Just making sure to note it though I'm trying it now lol)

        • Guy McDowell
          June 15, 2016 at 2:04 pm


  56. Reymerswaele De Leon
    May 25, 2016 at 6:21 am

    Hi! I am having trouble with my laptop (Lenovo G40-30) which had Win8.1, but while I was updating to Win10, I plugged my phone charger, because my phone is about to die. I think that the phone charger probably caused the havoc.

    But when I unplugged it, which is after the installation of Win10, my USB ports are not recognizing any of my USB media, but I can still plug chargers, and charge them.

    I brought it to a technician, and he said that I must downgrade it. Yet, the problem still persists. Then, he said to downgrade it to Win7. But, no to avail. No ports are still working.

    I tried your suggestions, except the hardware thingy, yet the ports are still dead. Please help me, I am very desperate to fix my laptop.

    • Guy McDowell
      May 25, 2016 at 6:50 pm

      Without being at the computer, it sounds to me like this is a driver issue.

      In Device Manager, you can uninstall and re-install drivers related to USB devices and the USB Host Controller.

      Windows 10 is half-baked when it comes to hardware drivers. Your computer may still have the Win10 versions of the drivers, or corrupted drivers.

      • Reymerswaele De Leon
        May 26, 2016 at 5:35 am

        Thank you! I'll probably bring the computer to a service center and see if they can fix the issue. But, I tried uninstalling and re-installing the drivers from the support site, yet still no signs of life. :(

        • Paul
          June 9, 2016 at 11:39 am

          WIndows 10 upgrade is known for the driver error is gives.
          The best way to "upgrade" is a fresh install of windows 10.

  57. joe
    May 24, 2016 at 2:55 am

    I uninstalled the usb host and now it doesn't appear anymore what should I do

    • Guy McDowell
      May 25, 2016 at 6:51 pm

      Do a full restart of the computer. The computer should re-install the drivers.

  58. Mitchell Ball
    May 5, 2016 at 2:49 am

    My USB ports still don't work with thumb drives and external hard drives but work with my printer and wireless mouse that has an adapter. Please can not figure it out. Followed all the steps in the article above.

    • Guy McDowell
      May 20, 2016 at 7:49 pm

      If those exact ports work for everything but your thumb and external hard drives, start looking at your computer to make sure it has the proper drivers for those devices. You may need to uninstall and reinstall those drivers.

  59. The guy with a faulty USB port
    May 2, 2016 at 4:20 pm

    Uninstalling the USB host controllers did the trick for me. I thought at first my hard drive or cable must be faulty until I happened to try it out on another USB port. Thanks a lot!

  60. Farhann Phoneyy
    April 28, 2016 at 12:42 pm

    Hello Guy McDowell. I want to ask if my laptop dual USB port is broken, and I want to buy a new one. Can I just replace the broken one inside the laptop or do I have to install anything like the USB Hub on Device Manager or any software to make the new port working?

    • Guy McDowell
      May 20, 2016 at 7:57 pm

      How good are you with a soldering iron?
      If only the port itself is being replaced the USB hub in Device Manager should be fine.

  61. Vikas Naikwadi
    April 25, 2016 at 10:50 am

    Second method of Uninstalling worked for me.
    Thank you brother.

    • Guy McDowell
      April 25, 2016 at 2:29 pm

      Hi Vikas,

      Glad I could help. You're very welcome.

  62. thomas
    April 15, 2016 at 6:41 pm

    also the mouse that I used like 4 years ago broke so I cant plug in a mouse that It recognizes

  63. thomas
    April 15, 2016 at 6:39 pm

    I have a windows 98 computer that I really want to work and it is turning on but none of the USB ports are working so I cant even plug in a mouse so I have the screen but cant do anything to log on plz help

    • Guy McDowell
      April 19, 2016 at 12:17 pm

      Will your computer use a PS/2 mouse? That's the kind of mouse that has a round connector instead of a USB connector. If so, get one of those and try that.
      If not, you can do pretty much everything in Windows without a mouse. Check out
      Navigating Windows with Keyboard Shortcuts Alone
      Now that you know how to do that, look up how to install mouse drivers. That should get you going in the right direction.

    • Bob
      May 17, 2017 at 8:21 pm

      Windows 98 has little or no native support for USB. You must install a generic driver to support most things (I believe the one that used to be on Micro$oft's server was called NUSB33E.exe, but I may be wrong).

      Even then be prepared to supply drivers for what you have plugged in. The support the generic drivers supply is not that robust. Things recognized and auto installed in newer OS's may require you to load drivers for them in window 98.

  64. Jen
    April 10, 2016 at 1:32 am

    I definitely have a hardware issue and I can't fix it on my own. I was thinking about bestbuy, but I hear people talking down about that often. The nearest center for toshiba is 80 miles away from my residence and that just isn't going to happen. Is there any way I can connect a mouse through one of the other outlets on my computer other than the USB ports? There are several other things on my computer that look like they can be connected to but I don't have anything to connect to them and I would like to know what each connection is for. Can someone please help me?

    • Guy McDowell
      April 13, 2016 at 12:30 am

      Hi Jen, thank you for reading.

      Search online for computer repair shops in your area. You should find a few that are independently owned and operated.

      Or ask your friends where they take their computers. If you're on Facebook and there's a community page for your area, maybe ask there if someone can recommend a computer shop.

      The big chains can be hit-or-miss when it comes to computer service. Sometimes, you can get lucky and find that the big chain store in your area is pretty good. You've got to ask around.

  65. Sandra
    March 2, 2016 at 9:40 pm

    UGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I uninstalled my USB ports and now I can't use any I/O device to log into or even enter safemode!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • jevv
      March 19, 2016 at 5:06 am

      OMFG, sorry to laugh at this, but i COMPLETELY saw this coming..

      that sucks..

    • Guy McDowell
      March 30, 2016 at 12:05 am

      It's not picking them up on restart?

  66. Kathryn
    February 22, 2016 at 10:18 am

    All my usb ports have started surging. I f I plug my iphone in (or any other device) the connections flashes in and out in 2 sec intervals. The iphones all admit a beeping noise, other devices just malfuntion of flash lights. It is the same on all 3 usb ports with any device/cable combination. I can not fin dthis fault mentioned anywhere else. I have uninstalled all drivers, the laptop reinstalled them all again, but same result. Could this be a windows 10 issue maybe? Its a fairly new laptop, lenovo ideapad 305, thank you

  67. Anony"mouse"
    February 21, 2016 at 6:51 pm

    I've tried everything above (except for the fixing damaged hardware one) to no avail, but just wanted to thank you for this article and how clear and concise is was for me to understand. At least some others have had some luck. I'm troubleshooting a mouse issue on an elderly family member's newer laptop. It's used mostly for YouTube and the odd Google search. They don't make changes to anything (they always ask younger folk to be safe). Touchpad is not the best alternative for them.

    This is an Acer Aspire E15 (ES1-511-C723) - 1 year Warranty recently expired 2 weeks ago. There is 1 left side USB (2.0) and a rear 2.0 and rear 3.0. Running Windows 8.1 x 64 bit. We decided on no Win 10 updates as yet, as it's just another learning curve for them.

    A newer Logitech M325 mouse suddenly stopped working. 3 various mice work fine in my OWN Acer laptop (the above 'culprit' mouse, my own Logitech one and I even bought a brand new Bluetooth Microsoft sculpt mobile one to try in this), but no luck in this thing on any or all ports. Those mice all work just fine in other machines. This affected laptop barely moves, and all the ports appear to be in pristine shape since the day it was bought, dongle is nicely seated in any of the ports and had never been removed since original mouse plug and play.

    I couldn't locate an or make any restore point earlier than yesterday which doesn't do much for this situation. I'm somewhat leery of Bios due to my limited knowledge there, and educational warnings.

    I have tested my USB/microphone portable speakers in all 3 ports of the afflicted laptop - Great music and no USB port issues with the speakers. They're definitely getting power.

    Oh well. I've appreciated this article and every single comment. It gave me hope for awhile! I'll repost if I stumble upon anything that may remedy these USB port issues.

    Thanks again for a well written article.

    • mtnbiker
      March 7, 2016 at 10:07 pm

      Strange, I have the same model and just a week ago it started do the exact same.

      USB is not working at all, power from the ports work, but data does not.


      • Guy McDowell
        March 14, 2016 at 1:47 pm

        Could be a bad driver update?
        Hard to say without having my hands on it.

  68. Tiff
    January 31, 2016 at 2:13 pm

    Thank you for the article. I got all the way to uninstalling my USB Host Controllers. I did that. I restarted my computer, and the "dead" drive did start responding again! However when I plug something in it usually says something along the lines of "USB device malfunctioned and the computer does not recognize it". In other cases I have to jiggled the device into a certain position to get it to work, like for my mouse. This is a hardware problem, right?

    • Guy McDowell
      February 3, 2016 at 12:38 pm

      A hardware problem is a likely cause here. Possibly a damaged USB port. At this point, it might be best to take it to a technician to be looked at and repaired.

  69. Lewis walker
    January 28, 2016 at 12:35 pm

    I have a mouse plugged into my laptop but it dosent seem to work , but it works on a different port. However i know its connecting because my mouse has l.e.d.s and can only shine if its plugged into a power supply. Please help!

    • Guy McDowell
      February 3, 2016 at 12:41 pm

      The power pin in your USB port is definitely working. However the pins that transmit data are not.

      This could be because of a software or hardware issue. Check in Device Manager to make sure all of your USB ports and hubs are enabled.

      If it's a hardware issue, you'll need to have a technician look at it.

  70. jeremy bearman
    January 26, 2016 at 6:26 am

    question for mr mcdowell
    hi there
    i recently got a message from my laptop saying power 'power surge on usb port'
    this has only happened once. can i safely carry on plugging my hard drives, both self powered and mains powered, into the usb ports without damaging them?

    best wishes
    jeremy bearman

    • Guy McDowell
      January 27, 2016 at 4:17 pm

      Hi Jeremy,

      That means that the USB device wants to draw more power from your laptop than it should.
      It's not a surge going from your laptop to your device.

      So if your drives are externally powered, check their power sources. Maybe they're cutting out and forcing the drives to pull power from the laptop.

      A hardware or software change related to your USB ports may have also caused this issue. Have you tried re-installing the USB controllers? Here's how:

      1. Click on your Start button and type devmgmt.msc in the Run or Search box, then press Enter.
      2. When Device Manager opens, expand the Universal Serial Bus Controllers section.
      3. Uninstall all the devices under USB Controller by right-clicking on each one, and then clicking Uninstall.
      4. Close the Device Manager and restart your computer.

      Windows should automatically re-install the USB controllers, without you having to do anything. Your computer should now run the USB devices properly.

  71. razi
    January 12, 2016 at 11:36 pm

    I did what you mentioned now usb is working but I have problem with webcam now it's completely dark when I open it I think I did sth wrong about usb stuff would u plz help me to fix the webcam? i'm using a laptop with usb2.0 hd uvc webcam

    • Guy McDowell
      January 14, 2016 at 1:10 am

      You may need to reinstall the webcam driver.

  72. Patrick B.
    January 11, 2016 at 9:55 pm

    Someone called me up about non responsive wireless mouse / keyboard. Turns out the USB ports stopped working (despite being fine last time the PC was used.)

    After uninstalling the drivers as suggested (using PS/2 devices), the logitech connectivity stick started flashing and now could pair both keyboard and mouse. It could also read usb sticks again. It worked until i rebooted.

    After reboot or hardware scan windows detects the "newly" added usb ports and starts messing things up again. Once it says material is ready to use, everything stops working. I tried to uninstall again but not sure how i got it to work the first time, doesnt seem to work now.

    It's an old PC with XP SP3, i tried reverting back to old drivers but windows says no need because SP3 has more recent ones (obviously). My last thing to try is finding old drivers from ASUS and force feed them to windows...i'm pretty sure i'll get the obsolete message again.

    Any ideas?

  73. anonymous
    January 7, 2016 at 7:25 pm

    along with the top few commentors I have a problem with my laptop. I believe the issue is from a recent update, whereby my usb mouse has been picked up more and more intermittently, dropping out every few seconds on certain occassions,mostly while gaming, but as of last night it doesn't pick up the mouse at all regardless of what I do. There appears to be no way to complain to mICROSOFT, so this seems to be the best place to seek help. The worrying thing is that the prolonged search for a solution has led me to the conclusion that this problem occurred in 2013 with an update as well, indicating that they are indeed simply after our money without the common decency to pretend otherwise. To be clear, my laptop says the drivers are running properly, the mouse works fine on other computers and otherwise the laptop gives no admission of it's failure

    • Guy McDowell
      January 8, 2016 at 1:20 pm

      If you're able to identify which update might be causing the issue, try uninstalling that update.
      You might also try restoring Windows to a date when your mouse did work.

  74. Prasanth Kumar
    January 7, 2016 at 5:05 pm

    Hai Sir!

    My Laptop has 3 USB ports. one on the left side is working but 2 on the right are not working (both). Please give me a solution for this....

  75. Linda
    January 5, 2016 at 7:55 pm

    My daughter's Lenovo Yoga 2 13 touch laptop has two USB port. One is damaged physically. The other one stops working. I tried the first several steps in your article, like removing the Host in device manager. The Wiindows10 does reinstalled the Host back. But the USB port still not working. I called local computer repair guys and was told that the USB is on the motherboard. Unless we change the mother board we could repair the USB port. How could that be? Is it possible for us to replace the USB port for this laptop as you showed for Dell's small laptop? Please advice us. Thank you.

    • Guy McDowell
      January 7, 2016 at 4:40 pm

      If the USB port is soldered to the motherboard, then a good repair shop should be able to replace it. I'd call some other places to check.

      Some repair shops would rather replace the motherboard as it's quicker and possibly more profitable for them.

  76. Hannah H
    January 3, 2016 at 5:55 pm

    This was a great help! All I had to do was update my driver! Thanks!

    • Guy McDowell
      January 8, 2016 at 1:17 pm

      Glad I could help. Thank you.

  77. siva kumar
    January 3, 2016 at 7:20 am

    my usb ports are not working for lnovo G50 laptop. what to do. please send a solution.

    • Guy McDowell
      January 8, 2016 at 1:18 pm

      It's not possible for me to solve this problem without a lot more details from you. Even then, I can't suggest much more than what is shown in this article and the suggestions in the comments section. Sorry.

  78. OnePie
    December 30, 2015 at 7:37 am

    I have a problem. My USB ports work fine on pen drives and mouse but not really on mobile phones and external hard drives. What I mean by 'not really' is that my laptop shows that they were connected, but then disconnected, and then connected, and it goes on disconnecting and connecting, while the wire is connected.

    I don't know if it's not the USB port's problem because I have a Sony phone and my friend said that Sony phones cannot be connected to a laptop via USB but only through a software. I've tried connecting Samsung phones too. While sometimes it works fine, most times it cannot be recognized.

    Another thing about external hard drives is that while most hard drives goes through the connecting disconnecting thing on my laptop (though they work fine on other laptops) my friend's Transcend hard drive connect without any problem on my laptop.

    Another note, this happens to all 3 of my USB ports.

    So, yeah. Sorry it's quite lengthy. I'm wondering what should I do at this point.

    • Guy McDowell
      December 30, 2015 at 7:06 pm

      A few things to look in to:

      Make sure the proper drivers for your phone and hard drives are installed on your computer. They should automatically install when you plug them in, but that doesn't always happen. Many phones come with phone management software. If yours has that, try installing it on your laptop. That can often help with the connection.

      The USB ports might also not be putting out enough power. You'd need a USB port tester that will show you volts and amps. You can get one for about $4 from eBay.

      Another possibility is that your phone cable or phone's USB port is loose or damaged. Inspect those carefully. There should be no wiggle room, and the cord must have no kinks, cuts, or separation between the cable and its ends.

      I hope these suggestions help. Read through the comments here too. There are some great suggestions.

  79. sunil murugan
    December 26, 2015 at 6:58 pm

    Hai sir,

    I gone through your article and comments. Am glad to write here.

    I have lenovo yoga laptop, Where my USB port is not working all of a sudden. FYI, My another USB port was physically damaged an year back. I never use that USB since i found its broken.
    I tried the all the ways except the DisableSelectiveSuspend.

    In windows 10, I am not able to see the USB key, instead there are multiple USB related folders in regedit. While searching by the "DisableSelectiveSuspend" string, I found the HcDisableSelectiveSuspend value and where i am seeing the value is already set to 1.

    Kindly advise why my port is still not working? IS any other way to make it work?

    I am in heavily need of the port. I am a software engineer. All my application backups are in my laptop. Hope i would get a response.

    Thank you sir!

    • Guy McDowell
      December 28, 2015 at 4:49 pm

      Hi Sunil,

      I'm not well-versed in Windows 10, so I'm not sure what to suggest.

      Was it working in Windows 10 recently? Perhaps try a Windows Restore back to a time when the port was working.

      Windows 10 has had some problems with hardware drivers. It might be possible that a Windows update was applied that changed the way your USB ports work.

  80. jobin samuel
    December 25, 2015 at 7:03 pm

    my HP notebook with 3 USB ports, 2 on the left side stops working, i checked the 2 ports with flash drives , external hdds but only wireless adapter for mouse is working. then i updated drivers , uninstalled it and rebooted, applied your hack, tweaked power settings, changed usb BIOS to auto. Nothing solved the problem. i'm using windows 10 64 bit OS. Do u have any solution for this ?

    • Guy McDowell
      December 28, 2015 at 4:45 pm

      If your wireless mouse adapter is working on these 2 ports, then it probably isn't hardware related - meaning the ports are probably physically fine.

      Are you able to do a Windows Restore back to a time just before the ports stopped working?

  81. Anonymous
    December 23, 2015 at 3:23 pm

    hi my 2/3 usb ports have stopped working I am unsure if its windows 10 or not that is causing the issue "But I just solved it now .. I changed the USB 3 option in the BIOS to “auto” instead of “enabled” .." how do I do that?

    • Guy McDowell
      December 23, 2015 at 8:46 pm

      Be very careful about doing anything in the BIOS. It may render your computer useless and force you to take it to a technician.

      I've got just the article for you - How To Enter The BIOS On Your Computer.

  82. Bill
    December 17, 2015 at 9:15 am

    Hello Mr.Mcdowell i have a problem and i want share it with you and maybe you can help me. Sometimes my cursor in my mouse stops moving but the mouse buttons are functional instead. It happens randomly also. I tried many usb ports but it lags again and again. My drivers are up to date also. I want to mension that i had the same problem with other 2 mouses. The mouse i use now is new i bought it 1 month ago. Any help would be usefull.

    • Guy McDowell
      December 23, 2015 at 8:50 pm

      Make sure that the lens over the light on the bottom of the mouse is clean. I'm assuming these are optical mice, not mice with the roller ball in them.
      Make sure you're using your mouse on a smooth, even, clean surface.
      If it's a wired mouse, make sure the cable is in good shape. Sometimes the wire can get damaged where it goes into the mouse or into it's USB end.
      If it's a wireless mouse, make sure you're within a few feet of your computer.

      That's all I can think about right now. I hope that helps.

    December 13, 2015 at 11:08 am

    USB suspend method worked like charm. I had to add manually though.

    • Guy McDowell
      December 13, 2015 at 9:10 pm

      I'm glad I could help. Thank you.

  84. Henry SWEDEN
    November 27, 2015 at 10:44 pm

    DisableSelectiveSuspend worked like a sharm! I had to ad the USB key in regedit because for some reason my machine didn't have it and now ALL my USB ports are working again wonderful!!! ♥ ♥ ♥

    • Guy McDowell
      November 28, 2015 at 12:20 am

      Very glad it worked for you.

  85. Qamre Alam
    November 27, 2015 at 10:07 am

    Unfortunate it doesn't work for me..... but Thanks for your Guide..... There is lot of guys Who get solved.

    • Henry SWEDEN
      November 27, 2015 at 10:48 pm

      Have you tried to add the USB key in regedit to? it's working wonderful for me.

    • Guy McDowell
      November 28, 2015 at 12:22 am

      Glad you read, but sorry it didn't help you.

      It's a good starting point though. You can build on what you learned here and should be able to find the answer somewhere.

      Sometimes it's hard to find the answers when we don't even know what to search for. Best wishes!

  86. Michael
    November 26, 2015 at 1:31 pm

    I had one USB 3.0 port not working, so uninstalled all USB Host Controllers as suggested and restarted, now none of them are working. Please help.

    Thanks in advance.


    • Guy McDowell
      November 28, 2015 at 12:19 am

      At this point, you may need to re-install the drivers for the USB Host Controllers. You can do that in Device Manager.

      Scan for new hardware. It should pick them up and re-install the drivers.

      If not, you can reinstall the drivers from the motherboard or computer set-up disc, or download them from the manufacturer's site.

  87. BD
    November 20, 2015 at 3:20 am

    Thank you so much for the easy to follow instructions. Uninstall of the controllers, reboot fixed. 3 USB ports back in action.
    I was dead in the water without them working.


    • Guy McDowell
      November 20, 2015 at 8:41 pm

      You're very welcome. Always makes my day when I can help someone out.

  88. Julian
    November 19, 2015 at 2:44 pm

    Thank you! Brought my dead USB ports back to life using your tips, ...was very worried would need replacing!! #obrigado

    • Guy McDowell
      November 20, 2015 at 8:40 pm

      Glad I could help. Sometimes it's an easy fix, sometimes it's not. It worked out this time.

  89. Jim M.
    November 13, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    I just wanted to say thanks for the post and instructions. Easy to follow... the Disable Selective Suspend Feature worked for me. Second time this had happened... first time the disable/reenable was the fix. I am by no means a computer expert and I was able to follow along and execute your instructions pretty quickly. Thank you!!!!!!!!!

    • Jim M.
      November 13, 2015 at 3:35 pm

      And yes... this is a Windows 10 machine (out of the box). Machine is less than a year old.

      • Guy McDowell
        November 14, 2015 at 5:50 pm

        Thank you for letting me know I could help. I really do try to make my articles accessible without being dumbed-down.

  90. Anonymous
    November 10, 2015 at 6:57 am

    Hi guys. I got a problem. My OS is windows 10 Pro Instder Preview Build 10565. My laptop has 3 USB ports: 1 USB 3.0 and 2 USB 2.0. A few days ago my USB 3.0 port stopped working. I ignored that because I still had 2 ports to use. Yesterday when I plug a USB HDD to my laptop, well, all 3 ports died. The USB HDD is fine.

    The voltage of the bus is 1.12V as I measured. I tried almost every method I could find, no even one worked. Please help!

    • Anonymous
      November 10, 2015 at 10:01 am

      Problem solved! I used a battery to power the USB port, then the mouse worked well. So there must be something wrong with the USB power. After I teared down my laptop, I found a hole on a 8-pins chip near the USB ports. It may be some 5V power supply chip. So I take it away and shot the USB 5V to the SATA 5V, which is highly not recommended. I think I'd better replace the chip by a new one. However, it works well now.

      USB 3.0 still not working. Whatever...

      • Guy McDowell
        November 14, 2015 at 5:19 pm

        Anyone who has the knowledge and guts to tear down a laptop needs no help from me. ;)

        Good job. I admire the tenacity.

  91. Anonymous
    October 22, 2015 at 3:09 pm

    This article is too much useful along with the comments.

  92. Anonymous
    October 10, 2015 at 8:10 pm

    Excellent post! Problem solved. Post a donation PayPal account to reward your effort.
    Thanks a lot!

  93. Anonymous
    September 22, 2015 at 2:26 am

    I recentpy upgraded to Windows 10 then all of my inputs were not working so my mous could not be detected... any ideaz?

    • Guy McDowell
      September 30, 2015 at 5:33 pm

      Check the comments below. Most of it appears to be caused by Windows 10.

  94. Anonymous
    September 21, 2015 at 3:35 pm

    I had the same problem.. after I upgraded my laptop to Windows 10 .. 2/3 USB ports stopped working ..
    But I just solved it now .. I changed the USB 3 option in the BIOS to "auto" instead of "enabled" ..
    and my 3 USB ports working perfectly now
    I hope that can be useful for anyone
    Good luck

    • Anonymous
      October 22, 2015 at 3:08 pm

      Thanks friend!!
      This worked for me. Well, I was confused which trick worked for me, but this one is the latest one which I tried and WHOA!! my all usb 3.0 ports started working.

    • Anonymous
      December 23, 2015 at 3:24 pm

      how do I do that?

  95. Anonymous
    September 17, 2015 at 5:11 pm

    i have problem with my USB ports. After installing windows 10 all the USB ports of my computer stopped working except one. i am tired of it. now i am using USB HUB to use mouse and keyboard. whenever i attached keyboard or mouse or any pen drive, it says malfunctioned. what should i do?. i have tried uninstalling driver, disabling and enabling USB ports. please help!

    • Guy McDowell
      September 18, 2015 at 6:27 pm

      Hi Ahsan,

      I'm sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but there's a good chance it's Windows 10 doing this to you.

      Check with the maker of your laptop or motherboard and see if they have updated drivers for Windows 10. Hopefully they do, and hopefully they'll work.

      • Anonymous
        September 19, 2015 at 4:10 pm

        thanks for your reply.
        i updated the drivers in windows 10 but nothing worked. now i have come back to windows 7 but still USB ports are out of order.

      • Anonymous
        December 23, 2015 at 3:27 pm

        hi Guy McDowell I saw someone say " I changed the USB 3 option in the BIOS to “auto” instead of “enabled”" how do I get to BIOS and do that?

  96. Anonymous
    August 20, 2015 at 6:17 am

    I "upgraded" to Windows 10 some good features but now my 2000 Outlook won't run "unable to find Wab Dll" which is a pain but then my Saitek Eclipse lll wired illuminated keyboard stopped working. I did a shut down reset and checked all the ports. The keyboard lights up for about 3 seconds then goes off. I plugged in an old Dell keyboard which works. I went to the device Mgr. as it seems the ports work but are not powered so the Saitek keyboard won't light up or work. The listings show two (2) "Standard enhanced PCI to USB controller"s and (5) "Standard open HCD USB host controller"s. I scanned for hardware changes and checked each listing for "properties" which said "this device is working properly" I tried plugging the keyboard in again--same thing; lit up for 2 seconds then lights out! Went to regedit and there is no " DisableSelectiveSuspend" on this desktop (SYX) so now I'm headed to uninstall all 7 of these devices and will let you know what happens.
    Why does properties say all these controllers are working? I would think this has to be a software issue with the new Windows 10 installation as the cause.

    Guy, I tried it; much time reloading but still I plug in the keyboard it lights up for three seconds then goes dark and does not work! BTW I checked out the Keyboard on my laptop and it works fine!

    Guy, SO NOW WHAT? What do you think? Roger

    • Anonymous
      August 23, 2015 at 3:34 pm

      I have the exact same problem to you and still no fix after installing windows 10 god damit :(

      • Guy McDowell
        August 24, 2015 at 11:20 pm

        Windows 10 is just scaring me now. What the hell happened Microsoft?

        I have no more ideas for anyone on what to do where Windows 10 is involved, other than rolling back to your previous Windows.

  97. Anonymous
    August 20, 2015 at 5:45 am

    I "upgraded" to Windows 10 some good features but now my 2000 Outlook won't run "unable to find Wab Dll" which is a pain but then my Saitek Eclipse lll wired illuminated keyboard stopped working. I did a shut down reset and checked all the ports. The keyboard lights up for about 3 seconds then goes off. I plugged in an old Dell keyboard which works. I went to the device Mgr. as it seems the ports work but are not powered so the Saitek keyboard won't light up or work. The listings show two (2) "Standard enhanced PCI to USB controller"s and (5) "Standard open HCD USB host controller"s. I scanned for hardware changes and checked each listing for "properties" which said "this device is working properly" I tried plugging the keyboard in again--same thing; lit up for 2 seconds then lights out! Went to regedit and there is no " DisableSelectiveSuspend" on this desktop (SYX) so now I'm headed to uninstall all 7 of these devices and will let you know what happens.
    Why does properties say all these controllers are working? I would think this has to be a software issue with the new Windows 10 installation as the cause.

    • Guy McDowell
      August 20, 2015 at 10:31 pm

      With some of the things I've been hearing, that sounds like the most likely cause. Seems like there's something going on with Win 10 and drivers. I can't say that for certain, but it sure seems like it.

  98. Anonymous
    August 4, 2015 at 3:10 am

    Hi guy, I found this in the middle of the night, I can't sleep because my laptop is playing in my mind!! I'll give the drivers thing a go in the morning failing that it's a costly trip to the repair shop for me :/ my problem has come from installing windows 10, I contacted Microsoft support because my USB ports seemed to stop working but they wanted to charge me £95 for a years support upfront to fix it but when I asked if the problem would correct itself with a roll back to windows 8 I was told yes, which I did, which didn't fix the problem. So now I'm back in windows 8 with a 2 month old laptop and no working Ian ports :/. I'll update you if I get the drivers working. Thanks for the initial post :)

    • Anonymous
      August 5, 2015 at 7:14 pm

      Hey! Don't pay for tech support! Follow the steps above to the T and you'll be alright. I suggest that you go back to Win10 then, uninstall all of your old usb drivers and force your BIOS to pull new ones. Good luck!

    • Guy McDowell
      August 6, 2015 at 2:31 pm

      Seems like Win 10 is breaking lots of things for people.
      You may need to get the original drivers from the laptop maker again.

      Please do let me know how it goes.

      • Anonymous
        August 6, 2015 at 2:58 pm

        Hi, nothing worked, had to resort to Microsoft remote assistance who, basically because it was their fault, have remotely reinstalled windows 8.1. Its actually installing now so fingers crossed :)

        • Guy McDowell
          August 7, 2015 at 5:02 pm

          Wow. That's kind of big news about Win 10.
          I've never heard of MS Remote Assistance rolling back someone's OS for them.

          Let's hope it works again and they get this resolved in Win10.

        • Anonymous
          August 7, 2015 at 7:34 pm

          Yeah well that didn't work even though they reinstalled the operating system and all the drivers, I've got to speak to the laptop manufacturers Lenovo but they aren't open until Monday :/

        • Guy McDowell
          August 10, 2015 at 7:33 pm

          Ouch. I'm sorry to hear that. I hope it works out in the end for you.

  99. Anonymous
    July 20, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    Solved, thanks a lot.

    • Guy McDowell
      July 23, 2015 at 12:44 pm

      Glad I could help. :)

  100. Anonymous
    July 3, 2015 at 4:23 pm

    i can't uninstall.talking about descendant approval.i dnt understand

  101. Anonymous
    June 29, 2015 at 4:08 pm

    Hi Guy, my wifes computer seems to have lost the drivers for the usb's. her computer has 8 usb ports (plug ins), they all quit at the same time. Found your page to see if we could fix the problem, but since we can't use the mouse, to get to the star button, how do we access device manager?

    • Guy McDowell
      June 29, 2015 at 4:45 pm

      If you're working on a laptop, your keyboard should still work. On it, there will be a key that looks like the Windows logo. It's usually just to the left of the spacebar, between the CTRL and ALT key.

      Pressing that opens the Start menu. From there, you can use your up/down/left/right arrows to navigate. The TAB key is also helpful for navigating.

      Remember, once you've highlighted a program or action you want to run, hit the Enter key. That's the substitute for the double-click of a mouse.

      Here are a couple articles that will give you more advice on using Windows without a mouse:
      Navigating Windows with Keyboard Shortcuts Alone
      Learn To Navigate Windows Without A Mouse, Keyboard Or Screen

      You may want to try Windows Restore to get back to a time when the USB ports worked.

  102. Anonymous
    June 19, 2015 at 5:50 am

    Halo, I'd like to ask you smth.
    I've just reinstalled my Windows on my laptop which has port USB 3.0 and 2.0 on it. As usual, I installed the driver also for it which I got from official web. At first, it succeed but my USB port 3.0 didn't work (other 2.0 ports worked well). So, I tried to uninstall and reisntall the driver again but all I got was blue screen. When I restart, it asked for Windows repair, and I did it. After that, in my device manager, the driver for USB was actually did installed, but there's still unknown driver for USB 3.0. I tried reinstall again but it always showed up blue screen.
    Do you have idea how to fix it? Thank you.

    • Guy McDowell
      June 22, 2015 at 2:12 pm

      There's a lot of things going on, on your computer. Too many to troubleshoot from a distance.

      This one might apply to you, as well. Why are the USB 3. 0 ports only working in USB 2.0 mode on my laptop?

  103. Anonymous
    June 6, 2015 at 5:57 pm

    Thanks a lot Mr Guy your Procedure really did the job for me & now my USB Ports are working in perfect condition. Really liked it thanks very very much you saved my bucks!!!!

  104. Sam Bell
    May 29, 2015 at 3:41 am

    Out of the 100 pages i found to fix this program i found this one and it fixed the probelm thanks!

  105. Jon
    May 22, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    Worked brilliantly for me! thank!

    • Guy
      May 22, 2015 at 1:17 pm

      Hi Jon,

      Really glad it helped you out. Thanks for reading!

  106. Tom
    May 19, 2015 at 1:32 pm


    Thanks for the help! The uninstalling of the host worked for me. I have a question though. Do I have to reinstall the host or am I good to go for good as is with no host USB controller

    • Guy
      May 20, 2015 at 5:48 pm

      Hi Tom,

      The USB Controller should have re-installed itself when you plugged in the USB device. Check on that.

  107. Riaan
    May 18, 2015 at 5:56 am

    HI Guy, at my Registry Editor, at System > Current Control Set > Services I do not have USB listed, only some strange usb titles like USBCCGP and USBSTOR, none have them DisableSelectiveSuspend in the right hand. I have a Toshiba Laptop WIndows 32-bit. My USB ports are doing strange things, working one day then not the next one. Trying all your advice here.

    • Riaan
      May 18, 2015 at 9:20 am

      I created the USB as you suggested, but when choosing the 1, should I choose DECIMAL or HEXADECIMAL?

    • Guy
      May 20, 2015 at 6:04 pm

      Good question. I should have covered that in the article.
      It should be decimal.

      USBCCGP is related to the USB Generic Parent Driver. Here's Microsoft's page on USB Generic Parent Driver (Usbccgp.sys).
      It's a lot of geek speak and probably won't help you, but it's interesting if you like that sort of thing.

      USBSTOR is a place where your computer stores information about every USB device used on it is stored.

      Sometimes, you might be missing these files:

      They should be in the c:windowsinf folder. You might need to make Windows Explorer show you hidden files to find this folder.

      If the files aren't there, that could be causing an issue. You may want to try the SFC /SCANNOW command in the Windows command prompt. You can read more about that in 15 CMD Commands Every Windows User Should Know.

  108. carole
    May 11, 2015 at 11:26 pm

    On my new desktop the USB ports work intermittently. Technician says my devices are at fault but I think it's highly unlikely that external hard drive and a a couple of card readers would give up the ghost at the same time. Had no trouble with them on old PC. Your opinion please?

  109. Guy
    May 11, 2015 at 1:03 pm

    Hi Deepak,

    Check to make sure the proper drivers for the phone are installed and working.
    If they appear to be, try uninstalling and re-installing them.

  110. DEEPAK
    May 11, 2015 at 1:43 am

    Hi.. Previously I was able to use my mobile USB data cable for media transfer, mobile charging through computer as well as USB tethering, but now when I connect my mobile to any of three ports on my laptop it starts charging but it doesn't recognize the mobile for media transfer and USB tethering. Could you please advise?

  111. Rukshan
    May 10, 2015 at 2:10 pm

    Hi... my HP pavilion15-n002sx laptop not working two left side usb ports....... please help me to fix this problem

  112. aaron
    May 9, 2015 at 2:25 am

    THANK YOU SIR! You've fixed my damn usb ports! They've been non-working for 2 weeks now. All I had to do was uninstall and restart like you said. Thank you thank you thank you x 1 million.

  113. Aundrea
    May 6, 2015 at 9:10 pm

    My usb ports stopped working one by one. Now in the DM list, instead of saying Universal Serial Bus, it says: UNKNOWN. I ran a scan and it came back with no corrupted files. I have uninstalled and reinstalled. I had "Geek Squad" run things for 8 hours to no avail. I now have a $900 paperweight. Any suggestions????

  114. Tamcheeks
    May 5, 2015 at 9:09 pm

    I was wonder if you answered Rippa's Question I am having the same issue. I switched out all the hardware in the desktop. uninstall all the usb devices in device manager, reinstalled windows down to vista. The computer came with XP, so I wanted to be able to aleast get it working in alater version of windows. Dell's site supports vista 32 bit.

  115. danila gheorghe
    May 3, 2015 at 8:05 am

    Hi, sorry for my english hope u understand my trouble,is about usb ports on toshiba satellite c660,after replaced this usb this worked just 1 day ,after that nothing,what could be ?What is the reason ?There is another device which controlled usb ports?
    Thank you!

  116. Dan
    April 6, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    Is it basically the same instructions for a Mac? Our MacBook lost a usb quite a while ago and now I need to have both operable. The inoperable one seems to have power but won't allow data to pass.

    • Anonymous
      May 2, 2015 at 11:59 pm

      bless you bro.. worked like a charm

  117. Ric
    April 3, 2015 at 3:25 pm

    While connecting my mobile phone to the laptop USB port the phone charges however I can't transfer files from the phone to the laptop, Do you think the USB could be physically damaged or do you think that I need to manually install the drives? Any help would be appreciated. The laptop is a ASUS sonic master if that helps, many thanks!

  118. Shirley
    April 1, 2015 at 7:16 pm

    My computer crashed and I was lucky enough to have all of my stuff transferred on a key until I bought a laptop. Last week-end, while transferring the contents from the key to my new laptop that has Windows 8.1, as soon as I opened the Images folder, a message window popped-up saying something like this 'this pc cannot view the ... I did not get a chance to read all of the message let alone write it down because at the same time on the top scroll bar, a green line appeared and went from left to right very fast. As soon as that was finished, the message disappeared and the key was ejected. While not panicking, I re-booted the laptop and tried again to no avail twice. Since Monday, I so far tried it on 5 other computer/laptops and all the key does is 2 red beeps and then nothing. My question to you is this: is my key dead or is there some hope that I can opened it to continue the transfer? Until I bought the laptop, I did work on the key and everything was fine until the transfer. Would you know what happened and what I can do to recover my data?
    Thank you

  119. steph
    March 16, 2015 at 3:47 pm

    Two of my three usb ports on my Hp notebook are toast. I was thinking I could make use of my last usb port with a wireless multi port usb hub. Is there any reason this wouldnt work?

    • Guy
      March 17, 2015 at 1:08 pm

      Hi Steph,

      No good reason that I can think of. As long as the computer recognizes it as a hub and has the proper drivers, it should work.

  120. Jakony Amnon Kananga
    March 16, 2015 at 11:33 am

    I installed Windows 7 Ultimate on my old Dell Optiplex GX270 of AO4 BIOS and the ports stopped working. I simply reverted to Win XP and bang! The USB ports started to work again. I guess the PC will run on XP till its doomsday.

    • Guy
      March 17, 2015 at 1:09 pm

      Odd. That suggests to me that it is a driver issue. Maybe the newer drivers just aren't compatible with the hardware?

  121. Majid
    March 3, 2015 at 2:58 am

    Post your reply I reinstalled the drivers and that did the trick. Thank you.

    • Guy
      March 4, 2015 at 1:23 am

      Hi Majid, glad to read that. You're welcome.

  122. Jay
    February 28, 2015 at 11:12 pm

    Thank you very much! wonderful tutorial, fixed all my issues

    • Guy
      March 2, 2015 at 1:17 pm

      Hi Jay,

      Thank you! All of us at really like to help people. I hope you continue to enjoy the site.

  123. Majid
    February 26, 2015 at 3:17 pm

    My USB was working fine until I reinstalled Windows on it and then it stopped working. I have run all sorts of Dell diagnostics on my laptop, installed the recommended BIOS, run through all of your suggestions but it still doesn't work. Can't imagine that I ran into a hardware problem over one night when I reinstalled Windows.

    • Guy
      February 26, 2015 at 7:57 pm

      Hi Majid,

      I tend to agree with you that it's probably not a hardware issue.

      Dell's do have a bit of a reputation for being very picky about drivers and such though. I know you looked into it, but you might want to go over the drivers again.

  124. Hitesh
    February 23, 2015 at 10:31 am

    There is a problem in my laptop regarding USB functionality. It started a few weeks ago.
    Problem- none of USB 2.0 or heigher devices seem to work. They get detected but work in an extremely low speed of 1 to 2 kbps. However, all 1.1/1.0 USB devices work properly.
    Integrated webcam ( USB 2.0 speed) , all external USB flash drives are working slow ( 1-2 kbps)
    Bluetooth , mouse, keyboards, older version of mobile phones (having USB 1.1 speed) are working properly at full speed.
    Measures already taken -Upgrading BIOS, Crosschecking for driver error/ conflicts/ missing drivers in device manager, Updating Chipset software, disalbed device selective suspend.
    I ran Diagnostic tests on my laptop which was a utility that came with the laptop at the time of purchase, but both USB EHCIs and all the hubs/ports passed all the tests.
    I need help.
    Dell Inspiron 1464

  125. Rippa
    February 20, 2015 at 1:40 am

    I have a problem that occured after i put my PC into sleep mode over night.

    I run windows 7 (and it appears that there are alot of usb errors on google relating to windows 7) With 4 usb ports at the rear and 2 at the front. All ports worked perfectly fine prior to sleep mode. After i woke the computer from sleep mode. None of my usb ports function properly. The only functionality i can seem to get from them is "power" they send power to connected devices but wont receive signals from the device. (my hard drives, My wirless keyboard and mouse, My xbox control, My steering wheel, My camera's) the only thing that works are the lights.

    I've tried all the methods i can come across short of wiping windows 7 for a clean install.
    I tried the above mentions (even creating the USB key in reg edit)
    I have tried booting in safe mode, I've even looked at my BIOS settings.
    I've dabbled in the device manager, un installed and reinstalled host controllers and root's multiple times, Restarted multiple times.
    Played around in Power Options to turn off settings relating to usb power.
    The devices function perfectly in my laptop.

    what has thrown me off is that i didn't change any settings and they were working before the sleep mode, also that the devices receive power indicates to me that it shouldn't be a hardware error (right?). I've even considered trying to find 3rd party usb controllers?? i have no idea what else i should try.

    ANY suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

  126. Manvin
    February 19, 2015 at 10:49 pm

    There is problem i have with my usb slot recently. This problems happened when there was a unknown device showed up in my usb section on my device manager. I have 2 USB slots, one of them doesn't work at all, no power, no nothing. However the other one was working for a bit but died on me the next day, but there is still power going thru it. Because i can still charge my phone with that usb slot but it doesn't seem to connect the phone to the not responding?
    Please help me >,< I don't know what to do .

  127. Miar
    February 19, 2015 at 7:30 am

    Hi, I'm in need of help.

    Yesterday I switched my computer to check something and the mouse and keyboard wouldn't work. It was working fine the night before, but now the mouse would light up for like 10 secs and die. It doesn't respond when it's lit, nor does the keyboard or webcam. The devices themselves work on my Sister's laptop so I don't think it's a device faulty. Meanwhile, I can connect my phone to the com with all the usb ports, it charges but nothing else.

    Help please?

  128. Saad Siddiqui
    February 16, 2015 at 2:51 pm

    in some cases ( if its laptop), problem would be solved only by taking out battery and press power button for 5-10 sec, re-install battery and power on your PC.

    • Guy
      February 17, 2015 at 1:26 pm

      Hi Saad,

      Thank you! I'm sure that will help some folks out. :)

  129. Suzy
    February 15, 2015 at 9:23 pm

    This worked!!! Thank you so much!

  130. Kelly
    February 15, 2015 at 8:50 pm

    Hi Guy-

    Im very glad to report that the problem is fixed & the remedy was as easy as unplugging laptop from wall for one minute!
    Thanks for your help =)

    • Guy
      February 17, 2015 at 1:25 pm

      Well that's good to know. :)

  131. Guy
    February 15, 2015 at 8:12 pm

    Does any other USB device work in those ports? If so, then it's unlikely to be a hardware failure of the port.

    Expand Universal Serial Bus controllers in the Device Manager. Please let me know what devices are listed there.

  132. Kelly
    February 15, 2015 at 6:12 pm

    Not that it matters, I have a Toshiba, not Samsung as stated prior, sorry =(

  133. Kelly
    February 15, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    I can try re-installing the mouse driver but, the wired mouse doesnt work either, so I dont think its the mouse/mice. Also I noticed that when I unplug the receiver, the laptop continues to alert me that the USB device is not recognized and theres nothing plugged into it! It does this repeatedly, not just once after I unplug it...
    This makes no sense to me...
    Also, since I went in (months ago) and uninstalled all of the USB host controllers, that did solve the problem at that time... so my opinion is that the answer lies in the ports?

  134. Guy
    February 15, 2015 at 5:34 pm

    Hey Kelly,

    Based on what you added, I think you need to re-install the driver for the mouse. Did it come with a disc? If not, try going to the manufacturer's website and see if you can download the driver from there.

    There is a way to copy the driver from your desktop to the laptop, but the above step is less work and you'll be sure to get the most up-to-date version of the driver.

    I hope that works for you! Please let us all know. :)

  135. Kelly
    February 15, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    When I open the device mgr for mouse, it shows "unknown device", then when I click on it to update the driver, the option is not available & driver details show no drivers are required or have been loaded for the device.
    The only mouse shown under mouse & keyboards is the touch pad.
    Should I just try the link you sent? The mouse works on my desktop, so I know its the ports on the laptop...thanks

  136. Kelly
    February 13, 2015 at 5:44 pm


    I have a Samsung l/top, I always use wireless mouse & it stopped working & wired mouse didnt work either in any of the 3 ports. I was referred to this page & uninstalled the USB Host controllers & it worked for a few months. Today it happened again & I uninstalled USB controllers twice & no help. I keep getting the "USB device not recognized" window.
    Can you offer any suggestions please? Thanks!

  137. Stephen
    February 10, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    Thank you. Very helpful - certainly fixed my problem :-)

  138. Michael
    February 8, 2015 at 1:14 am

    I'll try the place you mention, it sounds interesting. If nothing else I have learned one or two things by doing the tests you recommend. Thanks for all your help, when I find out what was wrong, I'll let you know if it is of any use to you.

  139. Guy
    February 8, 2015 at 12:06 am

    Does the mp3 player show up in the device manager at all? If so, then I suspect a driver issue - either with the mp3 player or with the USB drivers.

    Does the mp3 player show that it's taking a charge? Assuming it's one that can take a charge that way. If so, then power is probably not the issue.

    You can use a regular voltmeter or multimeter to test for power. I don't recall the pin-outs for a USB port, but that's easy enough to find on the Web.

    Ever use the site They're better set up to walk you through solving this issue. They're really nice people who can recommend different diagnostic tools, then have you post the results and they'll review it. All free too.

    It might take a few days to get it figured, but you've waited this long. It's worth a shot and a great opportunity to learn even more about computers.

  140. Michael
    February 7, 2015 at 7:45 pm

    Thanks for the reply, what happens is very strange. For example. I connected an mp3 player, and it recognises that it is connected. But the computer does not. I have not yet tried a USB voltage/amperage tester, can I use an avo(voltmeter) instead, as I don't have one of the USB tools?
    Thanks again

  141. Michael
    February 7, 2015 at 5:45 pm

    I have tried all that is here, and it didn't work, but my device manager has a USB hub controller listed under other devices, as well as separately. Could this be part of the problem? One other thing, my hard drive is divided between windows 7 ultimate and Linux cinnamon mint.

    • Guy
      February 7, 2015 at 7:27 pm

      Hi Michael,

      Sorry to hear none of this helped.

      Maybe it's a hardware issue? Hard to say without being there.

      I honestly can't say if having Windows 7 and Linux on the same drive would be the cause of the issue. Maybe if they were running concurrently, but even then I'm not sure that would be the cause, because one OS would likely be running in a virtual machine. That should prevent any problems.

      Have you used anything like a USB voltage/amperage tester? Might be there's no power to the port.

  142. sonny
    February 2, 2015 at 8:43 pm

    Hi my usb port stopped working, the other one works great, I have a dell
    laptop, running, windows 7 . when i went under device manager and under usb controller, there are 2 ports listed, both state they are working properly, one will not let me disable it, then disable button is not highlighted? i uninstalled it rebooted and it was installed again. but said there was problem installing, unknown deviceX so that must be whats causing it to not work?

  143. ken
    January 25, 2015 at 5:49 pm

    Thank you Guy McDowell for your advice! It fix my usb port by uninstalling the usb host controller. Many thanks! (=

  144. Marius
    January 21, 2015 at 9:15 am

    I have tried this above
    I cannot use the same ports as I use to.
    What could be the problem???

  145. Ludwig Roos
    January 13, 2015 at 4:53 pm

    What if there is power coming from your USB ports but none of your ways to Fix it made it work :(

  146. lon3wolf
    January 12, 2015 at 2:24 am

    hello im in need of some help im a video gamer and i need some help i mostly use wired gaming devices and in one particular device it glows and it comes on and off and does not come once again so im experiencing a power issue or more? ive tried to do what you said but im kinda confused even though ive done this before and my laptop is brand new this year and i need to fix and my computer is a HP notebook 15 not sure what model yet :P i will let you know and its running 8.1.... plz help im loseing games XD..

    • Guy
      January 18, 2015 at 6:48 pm

      Sounds like a possible power issue. There is a device you can get on eBay or elsewhere for about $3 that will tell you how many volts and milliamps your USB port is putting out. It's cheap and a handy tool to have in general. I recommend using one of those to see if that's the issue.

  147. lon3wolf
    January 12, 2015 at 2:24 am

    hello im in need of some help im a video gamer and i need some help i mostly use wired gaming devices and in one particular device it glows and it comes on and off and does not come once again so im experiencing a power issue or more? ive tried to do what you said but im kinda confused even though ive done this before and my laptop is brand new this year and i need to fix and my computer is a HP notebook 15 not sure what model yet :P i will let you know and its running 8.1.... plz help im loseing games XD..

  148. lon3wolf
    January 12, 2015 at 2:23 am

    hello im in need of some help im a video gamer and i need some help i mostly use wired gaming devices and in one particular device it glows and it comes on and off and does not come once again so im experiencing a power issue or more? ive tried to do what you said but im kinda confused even though ive done this before and my laptop is brand new this year and i need to fix and my computer is a HP notebook 15 not sure what model yet :P i will let you know and its running 8.1.... plz help im loseing games XD..

  149. lon3wolf
    January 12, 2015 at 2:23 am

    hello im in need of some help im a video gamer and i need some help i mostly use wired gaming devices and in one particular device it glows and it comes on and off and does not come once again so im experiencing a power issue or more? ive tried to do what you said but im kinda confused even though ive done this before and my laptop is brand new this year and i need to fix and my computer is a HP notebook 15 not sure what model yet :P i will let you know and its running 8.1.... plz help im loseing games XD..

  150. Hafiz Rahman
    December 29, 2014 at 12:19 pm

    My external USB 2 TB (almost full) suddenly can't open, ask me to format the disk.
    please help.
    thanks Fiz

    • Guy
      December 29, 2014 at 2:04 pm

      Hi Hafiz,


      Does your computer recognize that there is a USB drive attached? If so, the following may be your answer.

      When you remove the external drive, do you simply unplug it or do you go through the proper process of ejecting it first? Sometimes with external drives, especially large capacity ones, if they aren't ejected properly, they may not get picked up again when re-inserted.

      Try plugging it in again, and then ejecting it first, and then unplugging it. Then plug it in again.

  151. kells
    December 27, 2014 at 9:50 pm

    hi there, i have a mouse and headset with mic connected to my laptop, but every now and then they just randomly stop working and i have to uninstall all the time to get them working again, is there anyway i can fix this so i dont have to keep doing this? many thanks x

    • Guy
      December 29, 2014 at 2:01 pm

      Try updating your USB drivers - both for the USB port and for your devices. It might help.

  152. Mark Jhomel Olimon
    December 27, 2014 at 10:26 am

    Thank you so much!! This topic is very useful! Thanks! I thought that my Notebook's 3.0 port is dead. Thanks! I respect this page so much! A very full of thanks to this! Nice page! Really helpful!

  153. ron
    December 26, 2014 at 6:54 am

    The back USB port that had the mouse plugged in just stopped working (II guess) the light on the mouse works but there is no response when I move the mouse. There are 2 other USB ports on the back and none of those work with the mouse either. So I plugged the mouse into a front port and works. Odd.

    My sister has a new Dell desktop with a similar type of problem. Half the time the computer does not "see" the printer that is connected. Ditto for an external hard disc. She says when she pulls the USB connector for the printer out and then puts it back in the USB port then it works, but otherwise the computer does not see the printer. Same thing on the external hard disc. Don't know what to think. She says she didn't have this problem with USB ports with her laptop and docking station. I think she says she is running Win 7 but I cannot verify this.

    • Guy
      December 29, 2014 at 2:10 pm

      If the mouse doesn't take batteries, then at least you know there is power going through the USB port.

      Chances are that the USB ports on the front are directly tied to the motherboard, whereas the ones in the back are on a card that plugs in to the motherboard. As such, they would have two different drivers.

      Check to make sure the USB card on the back is fully seated in the slot on the motherboard. Try updating the drivers for this card, and for the mouse. If neither of those work, you might want to consider taking it in for service.

      These steps may also help your sister. Plus she should make sure the drivers for her printer are up to date.

  154. Kody T
    December 17, 2014 at 11:36 pm

    I have 8 USB ports. 6 2.0 and 2 3.0 ports. None of my 2.0 ports were working so I gave this a shot. When I rebooted my pc, my only working 3.0 ports stopped working and I get stuck at the login screen. The 3.0 ports only work in BIOS. They do not work in any of the safe modes. I've tried USB legacy in bios, but my version of bios doesnt have it. I also don't have a ps2 port or any way to get a USB to ps2 converter. I've also tried draining the motherboard of power and that didn't work.

    So I don't know what to do at this point. The computer doesn't recognize any keyboard in the 2.0 ports. I wish Windows would reinstall the drivers.

  155. harbz
    December 13, 2014 at 2:47 pm

    THANK YOU! i forgot the most powerful tool, REBOOT! hehehe. thanks for reminding! ITworks! ^_^

  156. Steve
    December 10, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    Wow saved me buying a new laptop, great advice, many thanks.

  157. Guy M
    April 14, 2014 at 12:10 pm

    Perhaps go into Device Manager and check if the driver for your mouse was installed.

  158. Pablo
    April 13, 2014 at 7:55 am

    What if my usb ports don't recognize my devices but instead they active the device, for example a mouse. When i plug in a mouse, the ligth of the lazer turns on but the usb dont recognize the mouse. That's a software or a hardware problem?

  159. kiran myageri
    April 12, 2014 at 4:52 pm

    my pc does not install any program and does not recieve usb except wireless mouse drive
    this caused after Uninstalling Microsoft essentials and some regular updates but it also not updating so please help to fix this problem

    • Guy M
      April 14, 2014 at 12:11 pm

      You may want to restore your system to a time before you uninstalled Microsoft Essentials and see if that fixes the problem.

  160. eclectikat
    April 6, 2014 at 1:07 am

    Hey Guy M. I have a problem in that I am operating with a new laptop and one of the usb ports is broken, the little black tab has snapped off, I have the use of two others, but I use a cad program that requires a physical key and when the program was installed I was told the software would not work unless that physical key/memory stick was in the port which it was in when the software was installed. OF course that is the port. Is there a way to change the port information so that I could use an alternate port but re-assign the name of the broken port to one of the remaint two? the software was a bitch to install because of how old it is, and not being compatible with the windows 8 platform... Imy laptop is an acer aspire V any help would be greatly appreciated.

  161. Ponderosa
    April 2, 2014 at 3:14 am

    Thank so much for the article!
    I do have a problem though... after uninstalling the USB host controller and restarting the computer my wireless mouse no longer works in the USB port that worked all along. My flash drive does however work in the port.

    Any idea how to the functionality of my mouse? (It does work on another computer).

    Btw, I think the orginal USB is damaged physically and also doesn't work.

    • Guy M
      April 2, 2014 at 12:37 pm

      @Ponderosa (great name btw)

      Does your USB flash drive work in the port that the mouse worked in? If so, you should be able to plug in the mouse and Windows should autodetect new hardware.

      If not, in the Device Manager, scan for new hardware and that should pick it up and enable it again.

      Please let me know how it goes.

  162. Kevin
    March 16, 2014 at 5:30 pm

    Wow your awesome!
    1 of my usb ports stopped working. I read through your instructions. My ports all showed up, but 1 was showing a problem & windows had disabled it. I did as you said & uninstalled the problem 1. Then just scanned for hardware changes, it put the port back & it worked. I didnt even have to restart my computer.
    Again thats, & good job on your getting to the top of the google search.
    Have a great 1

    • Guy M
      March 18, 2014 at 12:58 pm

      Always glad that we can help!

  163. Adeola Adeniyi
    March 1, 2014 at 5:16 pm

    Mine is Hp530, i have instlalled drivers but my usb ports are not working! I dnt knw if its a software or hardware problem! Physically my ports are intact but its nt charging anything nor recognizing any usb devices!! Please i really help. My email address is Tnkz will b grateful

  164. Tom
    February 15, 2014 at 7:41 pm

    Nevermind. I tried installing more AMD drivers and now it works.

    • Guy M
      February 17, 2014 at 2:13 pm

      Cool, glad you got it worked out. You were definitely working in the right direction by looking at driver issues.

  165. Tom
    February 15, 2014 at 6:00 pm

    I would greatly appreciate help. Here is what I get in device manager: [Broken URL Removed]

    My laptop has 3 usb ports, only 1 works fully. The other 2 only provide power, but not data (i.e. I can use them to charge things such as iphones, but that's it). I did swap the hard drive of my previous different-model laptop into this one. I had to install a lot of drivers, but I got everything to work perfectly except for these 2 usb ports, which I've now done without for ~9 months.

    I notice in device manager there is an "other devices" section, with the only 2 being 'USB controller', which have a yellow triangle warning/not working icon on it (see image link). And, like I said, I have 2 ports not working, so I wonder if that's where it lies. Also, it is the 2 ports on the left side of the laptop that is not working while the one on the right is working. I am using windows 7 64 bit. The laptop is an HP Pavillion g7-2275dx. I have tried installing more and more drivers, but this has not fixed it.

  166. Farouk Mansur
    February 12, 2014 at 10:23 am

    hello i disable my USB ports for my Mouth and Keyboard. and then now i want enable it to become working. please can u help me.

    • Guy M
      February 12, 2014 at 1:54 pm

      Need a little more detail. You disabled the entire USB port, or just the keyboard and mouse?
      If it's just the keyboard and mouse, you should be able to plug them in again, and the computer should pick them up automatically. If not, leave them plugged in and restart the computer. It should pick them up then.

    • Mitchell Miller
      February 12, 2014 at 1:57 pm

      This appears to be a gigantic flaw in this otherwise very clear tutorial. Disabling all USB controllers will disable your mouse and keyboard. At some point you will not be able to disable any more controllers if your mouse is not working! And bottom-line, wow to restart the computer properly without use of mouse and keyboard?

      I would warn anyone not to use these hints without understanding how to work through this problem.

      (This problem is actually mentioned in the tutorial, but no solution given ).

    • Guy M
      February 13, 2014 at 12:43 am

      The solution to the problem was given, it just happened to be a preventative one - don't disable all of your USB controllers! The focus was given to disable, one by one, those USB controllers with the key words 'USB Host Controller'.

      At the point that the user's keyboard and mouse no longer works, what is the harm in forcing the system to restart by holding the power button in for about 6 seconds? Slight degradation of the operating system? Which is worse? No keyboard or mouse, ergo no computer or forcing a hard restart?

      The gigantic flaw is in not following instructions explicitly and heeding the warnings. If I tell you to press any button but the red one, and you touch the red one, why should I have provided a solution for you doing that?

  167. Anonymous
    January 29, 2014 at 10:05 pm

    I have a whole bunch of usbs in the services folder which one is it?

    • Guy M
      February 12, 2014 at 1:56 pm

      The key words are USB Host Controller.

  168. Cheryl Folston
    January 15, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    Thank you so much for supplying this information and in such a simplistic fashion. I'm a 60 year old female who doesn't know much about computers but I was able to ascertain that the problem might be with my power settings and sleeping and hibernation and all that. I checked everything else you supplied as far as uninstalling the host etc. and it didn't work, so I tried having my power settings checked. My USB port would not work but after having the power settings checked, I plugged in my mouse and viola' began to install the driver for my mouse! Thanks sweety. I'm putting you on my facebook page and God Bless YOU!

    • Guy M
      January 17, 2014 at 12:36 pm

      You're very welcome!

  169. Anonymous
    December 25, 2013 at 6:47 pm

    Thank you so much!!!!!! This worked :)

  170. Marija
    December 13, 2013 at 7:37 pm

    I have a problem with my USB port. I bought new ebook reader and tried to connect it to my computer. It stays connected for about 5 seconds and then gets disconnected. I tried restarting my computer, disabling / enabling port, uninstalling drivers, installing newest chipset drivers. Reader is working properly on another computer. When I tried to connect my mp3 player on "broken" USB port it worked ok as always. So I'm a bit confused now. Any ideas?

    • Guy M
      December 16, 2013 at 2:41 pm

      Oddly enough, I'm having a similar issue with a Kobo right now. Once I get it figured out, I'll get back to you through the comments here.

    • Marija
      December 16, 2013 at 9:59 pm


  171. Guy M
    November 17, 2013 at 3:49 pm

    Thank you Mayur, glad you got your laptop working. We try to make technology accessible for everyone.

  172. Mayur G
    November 15, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    One month ago, I tried to repair my loosen+damaged USB port of lappy. and got success too. btw, nice article for the ones who are newbie to the USB hardware issues.

  173. David S
    November 4, 2013 at 4:12 pm

    Great info! Thanks Make use of!

  174. sunshine
    October 30, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    these all tips are good but not hand at all ...

  175. Stephanie S
    October 21, 2013 at 12:44 am

    Wow this is great info! You not only (you, as in Make Use Of) write great reviews but write informative how-to as well. My USB ports on the front of my tower work on and off. An example: I will use the USB connection for my iPhone (or iPad) and sometimes it works just great. I will make some changes on apps, etc. and then attempt another sync and nothing happens. This happens with other devices I plug in as well, such as my USB head phones. The port the head phones are using now has (fingers crossed and knocking on wood) has never misbehaved so I just leave them there. Prior to finding this reliable one, it was hit and miss. Sometimes I had sound and sometimes I didn't. So, I will continue diagnose this and see if I can get them to work ALL the time or take it to my IT guy. :) Thanks for a great article.

    • Guy M
      October 21, 2013 at 11:31 am

      You're very welcome, Stephanie.
      Towers are even easier to work on for this sort of thing. It's not a huge task to take out the USB ports on the front of a tower and pop in new ones, if the hardware is the issue.
      Hope this works out for you!

    • Oron
      October 21, 2013 at 9:31 pm

      Stephanie, the front ports on desktop/tower PCs are particularly prone to the "under current" problem mentioned by Kuran. If the same problem does not affect the rear ports, get a powered USB hub and use that instead!

    • Guy M
      October 22, 2013 at 12:13 pm

      Oron, good call. I forgot about that. Haven't done much tower work in years.

      You can get a USB Voltage/Amperage meter for under $10, folks. Just do a quick search on the web. Amazon and DX have them. If you're the go-to-tech-person for friends and families, this would be a handy tool to have.

  176. Guy M
    October 19, 2013 at 6:08 pm

    The comments about using a Live CD to test a USB are good. The article was aimed more at those people who wouldn't even know where to begin to check a dead USB port.

    There's a good chance that if you know what a Live CD is and how to use it, that this article is old information for you.

  177. Elrick B
    October 18, 2013 at 11:28 pm

    Google hirens dragonmouth it has a mini xp that you probably can use to test the usb if your on linux!

  178. Anonymous
    October 18, 2013 at 11:27 pm

    Really like your stuff for us older it people

  179. mathews jp
    October 18, 2013 at 7:08 am


  180. Brandon R
    October 17, 2013 at 5:01 pm

    A simple method I use to determine weather it could be a hardware or software issue is to simply boot into Ubuntu using a live CD. If the port works in Ubuntu you know its a software issue if it does not work then its definitely an hardware issue.

    • anjan bhushan
      October 18, 2013 at 6:53 am

      Yes Brandon, Linux Live CD can be used to find out if USB works or not.

    • dragonmouth
      October 18, 2013 at 1:59 pm

      What if you are using Ubuntu (or any Linux distro) as your regular O/S and you encounter USB problems? You cannot use a Live Windows CD as the different O/S.

      It would be nice if someone wrote a similar article for Linux users.

    • barry
      October 20, 2013 at 2:06 am

      for unix-like computers:

      disconnect usb device
      use the 'lsusb' command.
      get results
      connect usb device
      get results again
      if results don't change something's wrong with device or cable.

    • Brandon R
      October 20, 2013 at 2:28 am

      dragonmouth most ppl use computers with Windows installed on it if you when I worked as a technician I didn't ever get a computer from a customer to fix with Linux installed on it so it is a good method and however if a PC is running Linux you could use a Windows live environment from Hiren's Boot CD where you can boot into Mini Windows XP and check if the port works or you could use a live Linux CD still and check as problem one of the setting in your installed Linux OS is causing a problem

    • Guy M
      October 21, 2013 at 11:38 am

      @Barry, thanks for that answer!
      @Dragonmouth - I don't get to work in the Linux world as often as I would like, so I'm just not an authority there.

  181. Catx10
    October 17, 2013 at 4:57 pm

    I had this problem recently. I fixed it by changing the drive letters, apparently they were confused. I don't have any explanation as to why they got that way but it worked.

  182. Kure
    October 17, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    sorry..... CD would be more appropriate :D

  183. Kure
    October 17, 2013 at 3:32 pm

    In my world, 8 out of 10 non working usb ports (on a laptop) are the same old "over current on port" issues. Some notebooks were not capable of providing those standard 500mA per USB port even when they were leaving the factory. (macs are a shiny exception here, they need to be compatible with iPads who don't mind 2.1A). Even if they do, the mboards are loosing their ideal properties over time. Two suggestions: do measure the power output of the usb & if concerned this is a sw issue, just make yourself a linux flashdrive and try in on different OS. If puppy won't mount your drive it's not likely anything will.

    • Orry
      May 21, 2015 at 6:49 am

      Man, I did this (uninstall the host controllers) and now half of my USB ports don't work. When I restarted the computer, only one line of the enhanced host controllers reappeared. The second is missing. I'm not a techie but this sounded like it should work. Now my PC won't work as I need it to.