Symptoms of “USB Device Not Recognized” popping up
“USB Device Not Recognized pop up” is one of the most common errors on USB devices when you insert a USB drive to your computer. If it occurs, the drive won’t show up in File Explorer, and then you cannot access any data stored in it. So this issue always drives users to frustration. Generally, the error is followed by the two different messages as below:
“One of the USB devices attached to this computer has malfunctioned, and Windows does not recognize it. For assistance in solving this problem, click this message” in Windows 7 and Windows Vista.
"USB device not recognized. The last USB device you connected to this computer malfunctioned, and Windows does not recognize it” in Windows 10 and Windows 8.
Possible causes for "USB Device Not Recognized pop up"
Before trying to tackle with this issue, it is better to firgure out why this error occurs in Windows 10/8/7. After a long time of research, we complied the following possible reasons.
The currently loaded USB driver has become corrupted or unstable;
USB drivers need to be updated;
USB drive may be entering selective suspend;
USB has some damaged files or bad sectors;
USB drive has not been formatted correctly.
Six solutions you can have a try
To resolve this issue, follow the steps in the solutions below in the order listed. If the first solution does not solve the "USB Device Not Recognized pop up" problem, proceed to the next.
Solution 1. Unplug/turn off your computer completely
Well, if you are lucky enough, this super simple solution could solve your problem and you will save lots of precious time.
UNPLUG your computer from the power supply, not just only press the power button on your computer, which don’t actually turn off your computer and the motherboard will still get power.
So first turn off your computer completely by hitting on the power button and unplugging the PC from the wall outlet. That could make your motherboard, where your USB ports connects to, get rebooted, then it will be able to reload the drivers when the computer gets power supply later, and finally your USB ports should hopefully recognize your USB again.
Solution 2. Update your USB Driver in Device Manager
When the device drivers are outdated, there are chances that your USB cannot be recognized. Therefore, update the USD device driver to see if the “USB Device Not Recognize” error can be fixed.
1. Right-click on Start menu and type in devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager.
2. Browse and expand Universal Serial Bus Controllers, and you might find the device is marked as Unknown devices.
3. Right click on the Unknown devices. Click on Properties, the Driver tab and then click Update Driver.
If updating the drivers didn’t work, you can click Uninstall Device in the step 3 above to uninstall the USB hard drive, then restart your computer to let Windows reinstall the USB controller drivers automatically. Then check if the error still pops up.
Solution 3. Completely reformat USB device
Generally, you can format it in Disk Management, but that sometimes does not work since the Format option greyed out. It is suggested to try a professional formatting tool- AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard. This freeware could format USB flash drive, SD card, memory cards and other hard drives to most popular file systems such as FAT32, NTFS, Ext2/3/4, exFAT, etc. Below we will take formatting USB device to FAT32 in Windows 10 for example.
1. Free download the software. Install and launch it. Right-click the USB drive with a recognition problem to select Format Partition.
2. Verify the FAT32 as the file system and click OK.
3. Back to the main interface, click Apply->Proceed to begin formatting the USB device.
Formatting process will erase all data on the USB drive, so please make a backup if necessary.
This freeware allows you to convert NTFS to FAT32 without data loss and vice versa.
Solution 4. Disable the USB selective suspend feature
Similar to the computer’s sleep mode, USB selective suspend setting helps save battery power, very useful in a laptop or tablet. However, it is not necessary if you are mainly using a desktop. Sometimes, this feature causes "USB device not recognized pop up" issue. So you can disable it:
1. Click Start menu and type power plan in searching box. Then click Choose a power plan from searching result.
2. Select Change plan settings of Balanced(recommended). Then click Change advanced power setting.
3. Double-click USB setting box, then choose USB selective suspend settings.
4. Choose Disabled from the drop-down list. Then click Apply->OK button to save changes.
Solution 5. Check disk error on USB drive
When there are some bad sectors on the USB drive, “USB Device Not Recognize” will probably pop out. So it is advised to make a disk error check.
1. Press the Win+R and type cmd. Then right click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator. Click Yes when prompted to confirm.
2. Type chkdsk e: /f /r /x in the window and press Enter if you want to both detect & fix disk errors of e drive (where e: is the drive letter of USB drive).
3. Wait until the whole disk check process finishes and restart your computer.
Solution 6.Turn off Show app notification
Are you still seeing the annoying message after trying all the methods above? If the problem persists, move onto the last solution- turn off Show app notification, which some users report actually works.
1. Hit thewindows key and type notifications & actions to open Settings window.
2. Click the switch under the Show app notifications to turn it off.
With so many effective methods to choose from, you are sure to find a way to solve “USB Device Not Recognized pop up” issue with ease.