USB Device Problems? Check for Windows Updates

By LookinAround
Apr 15, 2009
  1. Check for Windows Updates When Having USB Device Problems
    There are many reasons for USB device problems. One of the first things you should do is check for Windows Updates. Run Windows update while your USB device is connected and powered on. (That way, Windows includes any hardware updates specific to detected devices)

    If you are running XP

    • Run the update as Custom (not Express) so you can see if any optional hardware updates are found
    • At minimum, you should be running XP SP2. But note: several USB hot fixes have been released since SP2 (see below)
    • I'd advise you run on XP SP3 (which includes many of the USB hotfixes) but even then you should double check for hotfixes (see below)
      However, BEFORE you do an upgrade to SP3
      • If you currently have Internet Explorer 8 (IE8) installed, uninstall it before you upgrade to SP3. Then install SP3. After SP3 you can reinstall IE8. This allows you the option to uninstall IE8 after the SP3 upgrade
      • If you have IE8 installed at the time you upgrade, you will no longer have the IE8 uninstall option! (Unless you can first uninstall SP3 successfully)
      • Also, before an SP3 upgrade, I'd advise you first
        • Click Start->Run, enter chkdsk /r to verify the hard drive's file system integrity. And be patient. chkdsk can take a loooong time to run. (Especially if it's a big hard drive). If you get worried because it doesn't look like the screen is changing, wait for a screen change (like %complete) to take at least 30 minutes before thinking the screen might be hanging
        • Run your virus scanner to assure your hard drive is malware free
        • See Steps to take before installing XP SP3

    If you're running Vista
    , it's best if you are running Vista SP2 (i.e. the latest service pack releases)

    Windows Hotfix and other release info
    This is not a complete list of USB / related hotfixes but here's a number of hotfixes you can review and assure you have installed in your system and/or see if it sounds like your problem
  2. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 11,128   +982

    Great post :grinthumb
  3. Route44

    Route44 TechSpot Ambassador Posts: 11,984   +72

    Excellent LookinAround. :approve: This needs to be a permanent fixture.
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Topic Starter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Thanks for the positive feedback :)

    i'm in the process of updating my USB Troubleshooting sticky and posted this with the plan to reference it as one first of the troubleshooting steps!
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