what happens when you get a "USB device not recognized" issue? In this article I'm going to walk you through the common fixes of device not recognized issues starting with the easy stuff first.
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How to Fix "USB Device Not Recognized"

In today's world almost everything is a USB device. You can plug your phone, camera, scanner, printer, iPod, mouse, keyboard, web cam, etc. to your USB port, but what happens when you get a "USB device not recognized" issue? How do you deal with that? What does it mean when your computer doesn't recognize your USB device?

In this article I'm going to walk you through the common fixes of device not recognized issues starting with the easy stuff first. After all, wouldn't you be put out with me if I walked you through a series of complicated steps only to have some simple stuff turn out to be the fix?

The Easy Troubleshooting Steps

The easiest steps to take are to unplug the device and plug it back in. Try to restart the computer as sometimes the computer has a hard time seeing new devices that are attached after boot up. You might also try unplugging both the USB device and the computer for 5 minutes.

You can also scan for hardware changes. To do so follow these steps:

1. Click Start
2. Go to Run, type in Devmgmnt.msc this will bring up Device Management
3. Right click on the computer
4. Click Scan for hardware changes

This may discover your device. If not then you're in for a long road as this signifies that this is a USB driver error. Driver errors are a drawn out process with a possibility of a lot of time spent searching, but we'll get to that later.

Troubleshooting For Driver Errors

Driver errors are frustrating in the sense that you have to search out the driver for your device that is compatible with your operating system on the manufacturer's web site, and sometimes it can take a bit of time to hunt down the right driver.

To make hunting down the driver easier follow these steps:

1. Go to the manufacturer's web page
2. Find "Support" or "Downloads"
3. In the search box enter your hardware specs, or if forced to search manually look for the model of your hardware that matches your device.
4. Select the driver that is compatible with your operating system
5. Download it to a location you will remember

Now you want to go to Device Manager to install the driver for the device.

To get to Device Manager follow these steps:

1. Click the Start button
2. Click Control Panel to the right
3. Click System and Security, under System click Device Manager

If there are no errors, you will see a Device Manager with nothing but green check marks, but if there are errors you will see some yellow exclamation points. The best thing to do at this point is to look for errors. If there are none, then we have to do this the hard way. That means that you guess where the device would be listed and update the driver from there.

To update a driver follow these steps:

1. Double click the device
2. Click on the Driver tab
3. Click the Update Driver button
4. Browse to the location of where you saved the driver and install from there
5. Reboot if asked

That's a lot of work to do just for a little file isn't it? Up until recently that was the only way to update a driver. Now there is software on the market that will monitor your drivers, and keep them up to date, it's called driver update software. No more searching manufacturer web pages and no more going into Device Manager.


DriverBoost's simple and friendly interface will show you exactly what you need to do to fix usb device not recognized in less than two minutes with just a few clicks of the mouse button. David Gaines is a technology expert at DriverBoost where he assists people daily with tips on optimizing their computers.

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