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Usb Ports Not Working Properly

By anthonyd46 ยท 46 replies
May 24, 2006
  1. Hi,

    I had to reinstall windows because of a virus and i was instructed to use the cd dell gave me, my operating system is windows xp media center edition 2005, and its a dell inspiron 9300.

    Ever since i have done that i cannot get the usb ports to work correctly, i tried reinstalling the drivers and the operating system again no luck...

    All 6 usb ports do the same thing. For some things they work, but alot of things it will recognize it is plugged in but nothign past that point and all the devices work on other computers here is an example:

    I plug in my HP 315 Digital Camera Windows Recognizes it, but no option is given to use the photo transfer wizard and when i use the hp software it says no camera is connected

    Another exmaple:

    I plug in my ipod nano windows recognizes its connected cause i seed the green arrow icon near the clock but if i open itunes it claims the ipod isnt detected and i cant update it.

    Any ideas on how to fix this?
  2. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    How did you get rid of the virus?
    Sometimes a simple re-install doesnt do the job as viruses\trojans(especially) and other malware can reside in the mbr, which is a small partitioned off section of the h drive that doesnt get reformatted when you reformat the drive. You have to go to the h drive mfgrs website, download the diagnostic program and inside that you will find the "zero write" prog that you have to use to make a new mbr that is free from any malware.
    It basically sets your drive up to factory specs, minus any wear and tear on it.
    So that could possibly be your problem, although, in truth, even though i may think its a longshot maybe its not. I only know that what i said is true.
    I use the "zero write" on all new installs i do, saves problems that can crop up later.
    On the other hand check your mobo manual and go to your mobo mfgrs website and check the FAQ, maybe others have had the same problem. Or you could call your mobo mfgr and ask them about it.
    Or wait til someone with more knowledge posts here, lol.
  3. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    Have you tried uninstalling the 'HP 315 Digital Camera' software and reinstalling?
    On the reinstall, follow the directions carefully. Frequently, the camera must be
    attached prior to the install to allow discovery.
  4. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    nork thats basically greek to me i have no idea what your talking about if your asking if im using like an external hard drive im not but i got rid of them by doing the trend micro pc-illin internet secruity 12 then the repair install suggested by the dell techs that know nothing and jo yea i tried that 500 times but thanks for the suggestion anyone else on this or nork can u go into urs a little clearer?
  5. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    No, im not asking about an external hard drive.
    What i am saying is that the hard drive we all use, the main c: drive, is actually partitioned off. A very small section of all main c: hard drives have what is called a "master boot record". This is how and why windows boots up. Inside the master boot record (mbr) is code telling the system that this is the main c: hard drive with the operating system (windows) on it.

    I wrote the info plain and clear, its just that you arent aware that this "mbr" is there on your hard drive.

    Now getting back to your main, original complaint, you said you had to reformat because of a virus. So what i said was that reformatting is fine but you also have to use the "zero write" program to make a new master boot record for your hard drive as virus\trojans\malware that is placed in the master boot record can and does survive, even though you did a reformat of the hard drive.
    Do you understand better now?
    Either way, the more i think of it, the more i am convinced there is at least a 50\50 chance that i am correct in my diagnosis. Especially since you have reformatted your hard drive and still you have no usb working. Now it could also be some other issue too, i am only telling you of one possible issue that does happen. Put it another way, i have helped many others on forums like this, and indeed their issue cleared up after they repaired their master boot record.
    Now there is another way to make a new mbr and i can tell you how to do that, but it may or may not get rid of any virus\trojan\malware in your mbr. I would be happy to give you that info. From what i have read over the years its usually a trojan that gets placed into the mbr. But whatever it is it can cause havoc! And i have helped many people in different forums to get rid of these things, and, as i said, i often use the "zero write" program. I did explain what this program does.
    I'm sorry you dont understand.
  6. niceguyca

    niceguyca TS Rookie

    have you use Dell Diagnostics program if not here is a web page under Solving Problems you find out in at this web site or

    Using Windows XP Device Driver Rollback
    If a problem occurs on your computer after you install or update a driver, use Windows XP
    Device Driver Rollback to replace the driver with the previously installed version.

    1 Click the Start button and click Control Panel.
    2 Under Pick a Category, click Performance and Maintenance.
    3 Click System.
    4 In the System Properties window, click the Hardware tab.
    5 Click Device Manager.
    6 Right-click the device for which the new driver was installed and click Properties.
    7 Click the Drivers tab.
    8 Click Roll Back Driver.
    If Device Driver Rollback does not resolve the problem, then use System Restore to return your
    computer to the operating state that existed before you installed the new driver. See "Using
    Microsoft Windows XP System Restore" on page 76.
    Manually Reinstalling Drivers

    1 After copying the required driver files to your hard drive, click the Start button and right-click
    My Computer.
    2 Click Properties.
    3 Click the Hardware tab and click Device Manager.
    4 Double-click the type of device for which you are installing the driver (for example, Modems
    or Infrared devices).
    5 Double-click the name of the device for which you are installing the driver.
    6 Click the Driver tab and click Update Driver.
    7 Click Install from a list or specific location (Advanced) and click Next.
    8 Click Browse and browse to the location to which you previously copied the driver files.
    9 When the name of the appropriate driver appears, click Next.
    10 Click Finish and restart your computer.

    hope this help's you out niceguyca
  7. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    Nork i did a reinstall not a reformat does that still apply where we can repair the mbr and how would i go bout doing that and yea i understand what ur saying now
  8. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    Thank you; much more to the point and far less intrusive than reformat and
    start over :giddy:

    Man, reformatting like this will (after days of fussing with reinstalls) will always
    work, just like buying a new car will repair the leaking water pump :knock:
  9. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    Ill lose all my data if i reformat though
  10. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    and that's exactly why it is your LAST CHOICE OPTION :)
  11. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Okay, the reason i said you should fix your mbr is because you mentioned virus. Also, you mentioned that you had to-reinstall the operating system (os), so i figured maybe you dont have a lot of stuff on your pc and starting over isnt a big deal. It was a suggestion, you had to get back to me to let me know if you have a lot of data or programs on your pc or if a reformat isnt a big problem for you. However, i did err as i had thought you said you reformatted, but you havent. So excuse me on that point, please.

    If it is a big hassle to reformat your hard drive then you can simply do a mbr fix from dos. You dont have to re-install or reformat. But if that fails then i would go the other way, use the hard drive mfgrs diagnostic and repair program to repair your mbr.
    niceguyca has an idea, but only if that will help any and if there are drivers to revert to. Certainly worth a shot to try.

    You can fix your mbr wether you have reinstalled or reformatted, it doesnt matter. I will help you with that.
    Reformatting, yes, its a last resort.
  12. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    From this trusty website:

    You will find this:
    The simplest way to repair or re-create MBR is to run Microsoft's standard utility called FDISK with a parameter /MBR, like


    FDISK is a standard utility included in MS-DOS, Windows 95, 98, ME.

    If you have Windows NT / 2000 / XP, you can boot from startup floppy disks or CD-ROM, choose repair option during setup, and run Recovery Console. When you are logged on, you can run FIXMBR command to fix MBR.

    I just use a win98 boot disk, even in win xp. Set bios to boot from floppy and use win 98 boot disk to get into dos. Use the same fdisk command. This is the fdisk command i use: fdisk /mbr
    This will repair your mbr.
  13. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    ok nork ill give that a try and let you kno
  14. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    ok nork i did that and it said that the mbr was damaged and needed to be repaired blah blah and then it said would you like to repair it so i said yes and it said the mbr has been updated sucessfully yet im still having the usb problem hmm
  15. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Ok, that is one thing out of the way. Since your mbr was damaged we can imagine that was from the virus you had.
    I would suggest you do an online scan for virus at They will install a small prog on your pc, its ok to let them, they are a very trusted company. This will allow them to scan your pc for not only virus, but items that a\virus progs tend to overlook or not find, such as trojans and other malware.
    Can you tell me what a\virus and malware progs you do have installed? Are they up to date? Have you run them lately? You should have not only a\virus but a few progs like m\soft antispyware, spybot, etc. I can name a few more if you should want the info.
    But i would strongly suggest you do the online scan at trend-micro.
    When you uninstalled the usb drivers how did you do it? The best way is to go to device mgr and to usb and delete the root hub(s) and reboot. When you boot up they should re-install themselves. Is that the way you did it?
    With the answers we should be able to come up with a solution, unless the online scan finds more issues.
  16. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    don't panic

    I think this reference is about due.

    btw: does anyone know of a virus that is documented to effect USB devices?
    I haven't!
  17. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    No viruses dont effect usb devices, they effect files that do effect usb devices. And trojans can and do mess up the mbr.
    anthonyd46 pointed out that his mbr did have issues and now it is repaired.
    Im looking at one avenue here, trying to help this person get rid of any virus\trojans\malware so that we can be sure that is taken care of.
    Best to get these things out of the way and then tackle the usb issue. At least thats my thinking on the matter, get rid of any virus\malware\trojan first and then tackle any problems after that.
  18. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    troubleshooting checklist

    Sorry, I strongly disagree. Move from hi probability issues to lower ones.
    When poking around in troubleshooting, we often find 'secondary effects' ...
    things that are not correct and even may actually need correcting, but we
    ought to make notes, leave it for later, solve the existing problem, and then come
    back to our list of issues discovered. In this way we find the root cause and
    avoid wasted effort and major disruptions that only complicate the problem.

    I offer a well known troubleshooting checklist used by those who get paid to solve problems.

    The detail description of each step starts at step1

    This excerpt is from
  19. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    We can go back and forth on this and disagree forever.
    But i am more into trying to help this person.
    He mentioned a virus issue. Some people dont realize that one should have more than just an antivirus prog running and that they should have a prog that takes care of malware and trojans. So i was trying to re-inforce this area. And, again, a virus\trojan\malware can affect files which in turn can affect hardware. I was trying to get the fellow going by first taking care
    of any possibility of virus\trojan\malware. Seems reasonable when he pointed out he had already found at least one virus. Where there is one there is the possibility of more, or trojans\malware that can affect the proper running of the os.
    Indeed his mbr needed repair. I suggested that and he repaired it.
    Now we can go forward and help with the usb problem now that his os and mbr are in order. I dont see what is wrong with that!
    Yes, you can point out diagnostics that someone else wrote but i was answering on his specific problems, virus to start with. Then there was a mbr issue as well. So i was working from that angle.

    Again, we can go back and forth on this but lets stick to helping this person take care of his problems. Right now it would be the usb issue. I am hoping that getting rid of the other issues and then re-installing the usb drivers would help but i have had to spend my time arguing with you instead.
    So lets help this person out instead.

    anthonyd46, sorry for this. But now its likely a good time to uninstall the usb drivers and reboot and they will install again on their own. Hopefully now they will work. I read the other day that this os, the win xp media center edition 2005 has this problem with usb drivers, but unfortunately i didnt read anything about any possible fixes either. Perhaps you might try google.
  20. jobeard

    jobeard TS Ambassador Posts: 10,869   +903

    strongly agree -- get off the virus witch hunt and attack the USB problem :)
  21. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

    Okay, so what do you think? Start with uninstalling usb drivers at root hub in dev mgr? Reboot and pray, lol.
    Then, if that fails? What do you think?
    How about any win xp media centre repair install? Can that be done with the type of install cd he has? Maybe not.
    Not to start this up again, but i certainly should have stated that i do understand your point, i guess i was getting a bit haughty. Its still a truce, lol.
  22. nork

    nork TS Maniac Posts: 306

  23. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    ok nork heres what i have:

    Spy Sweeper
    Advanced System Optimizer
    Trend Micro Pc-illin Internet Security 12

    I run each one at least once a day, it said i had 1 viruses yesterday which was some setup.exe file, but it cleaned it and problem still there.

    And i menetioned in the original post i did the repair install 3 times........and i tried that removing usb thing in device manager nothing
  24. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    $245.00 US per request (during business hours) or use an existing contract

    $490.00 US or $590.00 CN per request for business-critical after-hours support.

    ok then how do i get the hotfix im not paything that kinda money for something that might not work.........
  25. anthonyd46

    anthonyd46 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 26

    well any ideas?
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