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HP Notebook PCs - USB Device Troubleshooting in Microsoft Windows 98, Me and XP

This document describes general troubleshooting tips for Universal Serial Bus (USB) devices in Microsoft Windows 98, Me and XP.

NOTE: Most USB devices require USB device software drivers be installed before connecting the USB device to the computer. When installing a USB device always follow the documentation from the USB device manufacturer.

USB devices are detected by the computer but are not working properly

Perform the following steps to troubleshoot the USB port when a USB device is not working properly:

  1. Right-click the My Computer icon and select Properties .

  2. Click the Device Manager tab and open Universal Serial Bus Controllers by clicking the plus sign (+ ). One of the following four conditions are displayed:

    • If the device displays in Device Manager, the USB port is working properly. There is a physical problem with the device or there is an issue with the device software drivers. Try disconnecting the USB device, closing any software for the device that may be open, uninstalling the USB device software driver, and then reinstalling the driver. Connect the USB device to the computer after the software drivers are installed. Refer to the device manufacturer for more information.

    • If the device displays as an unknown device, check the following items:

      1. If the USB device is connected to a USB port on a port replicator, unplug it and plug it into a USB port on the notebook.

      2. The device may not be getting enough power. If other USB devices are connected to the system, remove all other USB devices (except keyboard and mouse) and restart the computer. Check Device Manager again. If this solves the issue, use a powered USB hub to power more devices.

      3. Disconnect the USB device, close any software for the device that may be open, uninstall the USB device software driver, and then reinstall the device software driver.

    • If the device displays under Other Devices the USB ports are working but the device software drivers need to be installed. Unplug the USB device and install the software drivers.

    • The device is not listed at all. See the next section USB device not detected by the computer.

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USB device not detected by the computer

Perform the following steps to troubleshoot the USB port when the computer does not detect a USB device:

  1. Check Device Manager to see whether the device displays under the USB section or the Other Devices section. To do this, follow the procedures below:

    1. Right-click My Computer , and click Properties .

    2. Double-click the System icon, and then click the Device Manager tab.

    3. Check for the device under the Universal Serial Bus controllers or under the Other Devices section.

    4. If the device is found under Universal Serial Bus controllers or Other Devices , then remove the device from Device Manager, disconnect the USB device, restart the computer, and install the USB device software following the manufacturer's suggestions.

  2. If the USB device is missing, double-click the USB Root Hub , click the Power tab, and then click Power Properties (if it is shown). The available ports and power usage is shown. Remove the devices and use a powered HUB if the displayed power is over 500mA. To check the properties of a HUB double-click HUB and the HUB information window will open.

  3. Remove high-speed USB cables that are over three meters and use high-speed cables that are less than three meters.

  4. Only use high-speed cables less than three meters with high-speed USB devices (Multifunction devices, scanners, and cameras).

  5. If the USB device is connected to a USB port on a keyboard, unplug it and plug it into a USB port on the computer or a powered HUB.

  6. There may be an issue with the USB port. Try plugging into a different USB port. If the USB device displays in Device Manager after plugging the cable into a different port, then uninstall and reinstall the USB device software driver.

  7. Disconnect all USB devices and use the following steps to remove the USB Host Controller:

    1. Restart the computer and press the F8 key repeatedly after the first screen displays. A Startup screen displays.

    2. Select Safe Mode and press Enter . Windows starts with Safe Mode displayed in all four corners of the desktop.

    3. Right-click My Computer , and click Properties .

    4. Click the (+ ) plus sign next to the Universal Serial Bus .

    5. Select USB Root Hub , and then click Remove . Continue until all USB Root Hubs are removed.

    6. Close Device Manager .

    7. In Windows 98 and Me, click Start , click Find , and click Files or Folders . In Windows XP, click Start , click Search , and then click all Files and Folders .

    8. Set the Look in box to Local Hard (C:; D:) .

    9. In the Named box type usb.inf , and then click Find Now .

    10. Right-click USB , then Install .

    11. Restart the computer and verify that the USB Root HUB exists in Device Manager.

    12. Install the device software driver using the manufacturer's recommended method.

    13. Reconnect the USB device. Consult the manufacturer of the device for support if the device still fails to display.

      NOTE: USB drivers for the notebook are part of the chipset. If necessary the USB drivers required by the notebook can be reinstalled from Application recovery.

      For additional information, view HP Notebook PCs - Installing Software and Drivers Using the Driver and Application Recovery Discs

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Error message: Activation failure of BIOS USB

Check the Basic Input/Output System (BIOS) for Legacy USB Support. To do this, follow the procedures below:

  1. Restart the computer.

  2. When the first screen displays press F1 repeatedly until the setup screen displays.

  3. Use the Left and Right Arrow keys to select the Advanced tab. Now use the Up and Down Arrow keys to select Legacy USB Support .

  4. Press Enter , select Enabled , and then press Enter .

  5. Press F10 to save settings and exit. The error message should no longer display.

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