Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (2023)

6 Fixes | USB Device Not Recognized andMalfunctioned

Here are the solutionsto the USB device malfunctioned and not recognizedissue. If you run into thelast USB device you connected to this computer malfunctionederror, don't worry. Use the methodsbelow to make your USB recognizable and usable again.

Effective SolutionsStep-by-step Troubleshooting
Fix 1. Unplug ComputerA simple computer restart could resolve the issue. Shut down the computer > Unplug the power cable...Full steps
Fix 2. Change USB Cable/PortUSB device not recognized may be caused by a broken USB port. Check all the available USB ports...Full steps
Fix 3. Uninstall Device DriverWhen the USB drive is damaged, the USB drive malfunctions. Go to the Driver, choose Uninstall...Full steps
Fix 4. Update Device DriverUpgrading the USB drivers is an efficient solution. Choose Update Device Driver in Device...Full steps
More Fixes and USB Data RecoveryMore fixes for the USB malfunctioned issue are: changing USB settings, performing USB data recovery before formatting USB, etc...Full steps

"USB device not recognized"is an error that usually occurs on Windows computers when you plug in a USB device. When the USB drive not showing upoccurs on your computer, you can't access your data. In different situations, the error is followed by various messages:

"The last USB device you connected to this computer malfunctioned, and Windows does not recognize it."

"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."

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (1)

The Last USB Device You Connected to This Computer Malfunctioned. Fixed Now

If your device is not recognized on your computer, try the six solutions below to make it show up again. We strongly recommend you follow the below methods in sequence. Since many reasons lead to Windows failing to recognize the USB device error, each method is for a specific scenario.

Note: For other USB issues, including USB no mediain Disk Management, USB corrupted, andcode 43 USB, you can link to the online guideline torepair USB driveand restore your data.

Video Tutorial: How to Fix USB Device Not Recognized

This video collects 4 reliable solutions thatyou canfollowto fix USB device not recognized issues. For detailed text guides, jump to the following methods.

Fix 1. Unplug Your Computer from the Power Source

This sounds like a piece of cake thing to do, but it works! For most unrecognized USB devices, there is typically nothing wrong. A simple computer restart could resolve the issue. This method reboots the motherboard, which has all of the computer hardware connected to, including the USB ports. Rebooting the motherboard usually helps solve the temporary insufficient power supply for outside devices.

Step 1. Cut your computer power at its source, which is unpluggingyour computer from the wall outlet.

Step 2. Leave the computer unplugged for a few minutes, and then plug it back into the wall outlet.

Step 3.Check if the computer detects the USB device and assigns it a drive letter.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (2)

(Video) USB Device Not Recognised Error Fixed On Windows 10 / 11 / 7

If this fix doesn't work, don't panic. Follow the other fixes below.

Fix 2. Change the USB Port

Is your computer's USB port not working properly? Check the available USB ports one by one and see whether it is a computer hardware problem or a problem with the device itself. If changing to another port solves the problem, then there is something wrong with the previous port. You can give up on that broken port, or send your computer for repair.

Fix 3. Uninstall USB Device Driver to Make USB Recognizable

If the USB drivers are unstable or damaged, this method removes those drivers. Know that uninstalling the drivers can cause all USB ports to become dysfunctional.

Step 1.Right-click on the Windows logo and chooseDevice Manager.

Step 2. Find and expand Universal Serial Bus controllers, right-click on any of the USB drivers, and click Uninstall. Do this for all USB drivers one by one.

Step 3. Restart your PC. The USB drivers will automatically reinstall and solve the corrupted USB devices problem.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (3)

Fix 4. Update/Rollback a Device Driver

Many YouTube videos and IT forums suggest using Device Manager to troubleshoot non-recognizable USB devices. Give this method a go and see if it works for you.

Step 1. Right-click on the Windows logo and choose "Device Manager".

Step 2. Expand "Universal Serial Bus Controllers",and you will see an item called "Generic USB Hub". Right-click on the first Generic USB Hub and choose "Properties".

Step 3. Navigate to the "Driver" tab and choose "Update Driver".

Step 4. When asked how you want to search for driver software, there are two options.

1. Search automatically for updated driver software

This way uses an automatic update by Windows. When this is finished, all you need to do is to disconnect the USB device, restart the computer, and reconnect the USB device again. Windows will install the latest driver for you.

2. Browse my computer for driver software

When you choose this option, you need to continue with the pop-up "let me pick from a list of device drivers on my computer."

(Video) USB Device not recognized Windows 10 / 8 / 7 Fixed | How to fix Unrecognized USB Flash Drive Quickly

From the list, select Generic USB hub, which is normallythe only choice. Click "Next", and then Windows will install the driver for you.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (4)

If updating the driver doesn't help solve the USB device problem, try to update each Generic USB Hub until you have updated all.

In the same path as updating the driver, roll back to the previous driver when the error didn't occur. Instead of selecting "Update Driver" in the "Driver" tab, choose "Roll Back Driver" this time.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (5)

The changes made on the computer power and the device driver should take effect, and your USB device will no longer report issues. If this is not the case, try the other three methods one by one.

Fix 5. Change the USB Selective Suspend Settings

Another possible reason your USB malfunctions is that the hub driver suspends the USB automatically. In this case, changing the USB selective suspend settings could help.

Step 1. Right-click on the Windows icon and click "Power Options".

Step 2. In the Choose or customize a power plan window, click "Change plan setting".

Step 3.Click "Change advanced power settings" in the Edit Plan Settings window.

Step 4. In the Power Options window, find and expand USB settings, expand USB selective suspend settings, and Disable both On battery and Plugged in settings.

Step 5. Click "Apply"and then "OK" to save the settings.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (6)

Fix 6. Fix USB Root Hub

The USB root hub is the software driver that lets you connect multiple USB peripherals to your computer. Most computers have multiple root hubs so you can share the data bus across multiple devices. So, if the computer cannot recognize your USB drive, try to fix the USB root hub.

Step 1. Open Device Manager, find the Universal Serial Bus controllers option and single-click it to expand it.

Step 2. Find the USB Root Hub option in this category, right-click it, and choose "Properties".

(Video) How to Fix USB Device Not Recognized in Windows 10

Step 3. Go to the "Power Management" tab and uncheck the "Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power" option. Then, click "OK" to save your changes.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (7)

Fix 7. Turn to Remote USB Repair Service

If you still cannot fix your USB drive, you can turn to experts. Our USB repair experts can solve your problems easily.

Consult with SalvageData's experts to retrieve data from inaccessible or corrupted data from all brands and formats of digital media.

  • Certified ISO–5 class 100 cleanroom recovery
  • Free diagnostic, no data, no charge
  • Support all operating systems and devices
  • Offer a range of turnaround times for fast recovery

Further Troubleshooting:Data Recovery from USB Flash Drive

The six ways we outlined above are all the possible ways to fix the "USB device malfunctioned and not recognized" error.

If one of the fixes worked, you should be able to access your USB and use the saved data on it again.

If you have resolved the problem but find that data is missing from your USB flash drive, you need third-party software to retrieve your data. Here, EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard can help when your USB device does not appear on your computer but appears in Disk Management. The program works very well in Windows 10/8/7/XP and previous versions.

EaseUS Hard Drive Data Recovery Software

  • Recover deleted files from USB, emptied Recycle Bin, SD card,digital camera, and camcorders
  • Restore datafor sudden deletion, formatting, hard drive corruption, virus attack, and system crash under different situations
  • Repair corrupted files on the USB drive, including damaged photos, videos, and documents

Download for Win Recovery Rate 99.7%

(Video) How to Fix USB device not recognized Windows 11

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Step 1. Choose the USB drive to scan

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard and choose your USB drive where you lost important files. Click "Scan" to start.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (9)

Step 2. Check and preview USB drive data

When the scanning is finished, you can quickly locate a specific type of file by using the Filter feature as well as the Search option.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (10)

Step 3. Restore flash drive data

After checking and finding lost USB drive files, click "Recover" to restore them. You shall save the found files to a safe location on your PC rather than to your USB drive.

Fixed: USB Device Not Recognized and Malfunctioned in Windows 10/11 (11)

When you retrieve data from USB devices, we suggest you save retrieved files to a secure location to avoid further problems.

Bonus Tip: Format USB to NTFS/FAT32 and Recreate Partition on USB

A few people encountered the issue more than once. They said the same USB device started malfunctioning again after a short period of repairing it. If this is the case with you, formatting and recreating a new partition can help.

  • Connect the USB to the PC, right-click on This PC/My Computer, and select Manage.
  • Enter Device Manager, select Disk Management, locate and right-click on your malfunctioned USB, and select Format volume...
  • Finish the format process and set the file system to NTFS or FAT32.

Check whether the USB shows up on your computer or not. If not, follow the steps below:

  • Open Disk Management, right-click on USB, select Delete Volume, and complete the process.
  • When the USB shows as unallocated, right-click on it, select New Simple Volume, set the drive letter, set the file system (NTFS/FAT32) for it, and complete the process.

After this, you should be able to access the USB drive on your PC and save data on it again.

USB Device Not Recognized FAQs

Read the questions and answers below to get more info to fixthe last USB device you connected to this computer malfunctioned and Windows does not recognize it problem.

(Video) How to Fix USB Device Not Recognized Error on Windows 10?

Why is my USB device not showing up?

Your computer may not recognize your USB drive for the following reasons:

  • The USB is not properly connected to the computer
  • The USB port on the computer is broken
  • The USB driver is outdated or problematic
  • The USB drive is damaged or corrupted

How do I get my USB ports to recognize my device?

To get the USB ports to recognizeyour USB drive, you can:

  • Unplug the USB and reconnect it after a few minutes.
  • Connect your USB driveto another USB port
  • Connect yourUSB flash drive to another computer
  • Update the USB device drivers

How do I fix the USB device not recognized in Windows 10?

If you encounterthe last USB device you connected to this computer malfunctioned issue, take these ways to troubleshoot:

  • Restart your computer
  • Change another USB port or computer
  • Update USB driver
  • Recover USB data and format the USB drive


How do I fix USB device not recognized Windows 11? ›

  1. Fix 1: Restart Your Computer.
  2. Fix 2: Try a Different USB Port and/or Machine.
  3. Fix 3: Run USB Troubleshooter.
  4. Fix 4: Uninstall the USB Device.
  5. Fix 5: Disable the USB Selective Suspend Setting.
  6. Fix 6: Install the Latest Chipset Drivers for Your Motherboard.
  7. Fix 7: Install the Latest Windows Updates.
2 May 2022

How do I fix USB malfunctioned and not recognized in Windows 10? ›

Press and hold (or right-click) the USB external hard drive with the issue, and select Uninstall. After the hard drive is uninstalled, unplug the USB cable. Wait for 1 minute and then reconnect the USB cable. The driver should automatically load.

How do I get Windows 11 to recognize my USB device? ›

Top 8 Ways to Fix Windows 11 Not Recognizing USB Devices
  1. Unlock and Trust Device. ...
  2. Clean USB Port. ...
  3. Try Another USB Port. ...
  4. Change Power Management Settings. ...
  5. Reinstall USB Drivers. ...
  6. Disable USB Suspend Settings. ...
  7. Scan Windows PC. ...
  8. Update Windows 11.
23 Feb 2022

What format should USB be for Windows 11 install? ›

Windows 11 operating system

Type and search [File Explorer] in the Windows search bar①, then click [Open]②. In the File Explorer window, select [This PC]③. Right-click your USB flash drive④, then select [Format]⑤. Select File system to [FAT32]⑥, then select [Start]⑦.

How do I reinstall USB drivers in Windows 11? ›

Reinstall the device driver

In the search box on the taskbar, enter device manager, then select Device Manager. Right-click (or press and hold) the name of the device, and then select Uninstall. Restart your PC. Windows will attempt to reinstall the driver.

Can a corrupted USB Be Fixed? ›

If the USB drivers are corrupted or out-of-date, reinstalling them or updating them can fix the issue. Right-click the Start icon and click on Device Manager. Expand the dropdown for Disk drives, right-click your USB, and click Uninstall device. Unplug your USB then plug it back in.

What causes USB ports to malfunction? ›

USB-related issues can be caused due to incompatible device, outdated, incorrect, or corrupt drivers, damaged USB ports or cables, faulty USB port, and so on.

How do I fix a corrupted USB drive in Windows 10? ›

Method 2. Windows Utility - Check and Fix the Error on the Damaged USB
  1. Connect the USB to your PC.
  2. Go to My Computer/This PC and then the USB Drive.
  3. Right-click the USB drive and select Properties.
  4. Click on the Tools tab.
  5. Click the Check button.
  6. Step 6: Let the scan process complete, then close the scan window.
15 Nov 2022

Can Windows 11 run from a USB drive? ›

Loading and running Windows 10 or Windows 11 from a USB drive is a handy option when you're using a computer saddled with an older operating system. If you're using a PC outfitted with an older version of Windows but want a more up-to-date operating system, you can run Windows 10 or 11 directly from a USB drive.

Why won't Windows 11 recognize my external hard drive? ›

Reinstall Drivers

It's time to reinstall hard drive drivers if it's still not showing up in Windows 11. Step 1: Open the Device Manager menu (refer to the steps above). Step 2: Find your hard drive from the Disk drives list and right-click on it. Step 3: Select Update Driver from the context menu.

How do I get files off malfunctioning USB? ›

Most data loss issues can be solved by using a professional USB flash drive data recovery software. You can free download such program and install it on your PC to begin scanning the device and recover data.

How do I get Windows 10 to recognize a USB device? ›

There are six methods to fix a USB device not recognized on Windows 11/10/8:
  1. Unplug the PC from the power source.
  2. Change to plug in another USB port.
  3. Uninstall the USB device driver.
  4. Update the USB device driver.
  5. Change the USB selective suspend settings.
  6. Fix the USB root hub.
23 Nov 2022

Does Windows 11 use FAT32? ›

In Windows, there are three file systems: NTFS, FAT32, and exFAT. However, because of FAT32's superior compatibility, many users prefer to format USB to FAT32 with Windows 11/10. The leading cause for formatting a USB drive to FAT32 on a Windows PC is to make it compatible with various devices and operating systems.

Does Windows 11 use FAT32 or NTFS? ›

The Windows 11, 10, 8.1 and other MS Server operating systems primarily use NTFS. The file system is also supported by other operating systems such as Linux and BSD.

Should Windows 10 USB be FAT32 or NTFS? ›

NTFS is the default file system for Windows 10. This is because it has no file limitations and supports file compression. It's unlike FAT32, which limits a single file to 32GB. Therefore, you should use NTFS for your Windows 10 bootable USB drive to ensure the system successfully installs.

How do I force Windows to recognize a USB? ›

Windows cannot detect my new USB device. What do I do?
  1. Open Device Manager and then disconnect the USB device from your computer. Wait a few moments and then reconnect the device. ...
  2. Connect the USB device to another USB port.
  3. Connect the USB device to another computer.
  4. Update the USB device drivers.

How do I scan and repair drives in Windows 11? ›

Run chkdsk to repair a Windows 11 hard drive

From the context menu, select Properties, and then, select the Tools tab (Figure A). Figure A: Scan your hard drive for any errors through the Tools tab on the drive's Properties menu. On the Tools tab, click the Check button.

Can a faulty USB damage a computer? ›

Everyone knows that USB sticks can house nasties, including malware, but did you know that this same little drive can completely destroy a system by simply inserting it? Welcome to the destructive world of USB Killer.

How do I check if my USB ports are malfunctioning? ›

Check the USB device functionality on another computer

To verify if the USB device is faulty, unplug the USB device from the computer and plug it into another computer. If the device is not detected and is not working on another known-good computer too, the USB device is faulty.

Can a corrupted hard drive be repaired? ›

You can fix a corrupted hard drive by running the CHKDSK command in Command Prompt. Caution: The CHKDSK command known for scanning and repairing drive, allow to use /f and /r attributes to fix the corruption in the hard disk.

How do I manually repair corrupted files Windows 10? ›

1. Run the SFC Scan to Repair Corrupt System Files
  1. Enter "cmd" in the Windows search bar.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt and select Run as administrator.
  3. Enter the command "SFC /scannow" and press Enter. ( Be sure to add a space between "SFC" and "/scannow")
13 Jun 2022

How can I open a corrupted USB without formatting? ›

how to fix a corrupted flash drive without formatting
  1. Stop using the USB drive.
  2. Do not add new items to USB stick.
  3. Do not reformat the USB flash drive.
  4. Open CMD. ...
  5. Check if your drive has bad sectors. ...
  6. chkdsk H: /f (H is the drive letter of USB drive. ...
  7. Type Y if the drive is in use and hit Enter key to proceed.
17 Oct 2022

Can you transfer files from Windows 10 to Windows 11? ›

You can simply connect your external hard drive to your Windows 10 PC and copy all the files that you want to transfer to Windows 11. Once that is done, you can connect the external hard drive to your Windows 11. Then, copy the content from the external hard drive onto your new Windows 11 PC.

Is Windows 11 better now? ›

Windows 11 is worth the update for most people. It comes with a wide range of new features, performance improvements, and design changes. As the latest Windows OS, it usually gets more attention than Windows 10, too. There's not too much risk in upgrading to Windows 11, either.

How much space does Windows 11 take on a USB? ›

RAM: 4 gigabytes (GB) or greater. Storage: 64 GB* or greater available storage is required to install Windows 11. Extra storage space might be required to download updates and enable specific features.

Do all external hard drives work with Windows 11? ›

Rest assured Windows 11 is compatible with a 2TB external drive, all drives that worked in Windows 10 will also work in Windows 11.

How do I transfer files from external hard drive to Windows 11? ›

Connect your external storage device to your current Windows 11 PC. On the taskbar, select File Explorer . Locate the files you wish to copy, or the folders where those files are stored. To copy multiple files, hold CTRL as you select additional files or folders.

How do I restore an external hard drive in Windows 11? ›

Format hard drive on Windows 11 from Settings
  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on System.
  3. Click the Storage tab.
  4. Click on “Advanced storage settings.”
  5. Click the “Disks & volumes” setting.
  6. Select the hard drive from the list.
  7. Click the Properties button.
  8. Click the Format button.
8 Nov 2022

How do I enable ports in Windows 11? ›

Opening Ports in Windows Firewall
  1. From the Start menu, click Control Panel, click System and Security, and then click Windows Firewall. ...
  2. Click Advanced Settings.
  3. Click Inbound Rules.
  4. Click New Rule in the Actions window.
  5. Click Rule Type of Port.
  6. Click Next.
  7. On the Protocol and Ports page click TCP.
23 Nov 2022


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