USB devices are becoming increasingly common due to their portability and ability to hold and transfer large amounts of data easily. There are many devices that use USB connections to interact with your computer, such as phones, cameras, MP3 players, and of course storage devices. The convenience these devices offer does not go unnoticed, however the annoyance presented by seemingly inexplicable error messages can be disappointing at times.
The main issue people have with USB devices is the unknown device error. These errors usually present themselves in the form of an error message that reads: “Unknown Device” or “USB device not recognized.” This error message is particularly frustrating because it appears as soon as the device is plugged in, and it renders the device unusable.
While this problem may seem inexplicable, there are two main reasons why it usually occurs. When this message is displayed it means the computer recognizes that a device is plugged in, but it cannot identify and effectively communicate with the device. This means the problem lies usually not within the device itself, but rather in the device drivers. The following information will give you a better understanding of this error, and what you can do to fix it.
Device Driver is Outdated
The driver for your USB device serves as a mediator and a translator for your computer. Each device is configured differently, so in order for it to work seamlessly with your computer, the correct drivers must be installed in your operating system. If the driver is obsolete or outdated, then the operating system cannot recognize, identify, and communicate with device correctly. When this happens, the device is labeled as “Unknown,” because there is no mediator between the device and your operating system.
To fix this problem you will need to install the latest drivers for your device. This can be done by downloading the latest drivers from the website of the device’s manufacturer. If you are having trouble finding the latest drivers for your device the manufacturer may need to send you a CD with the latest drivers on it. If you have successfully installed the latest drivers and the device still does not work, then the device itself may be damaged. Often obtaining and utilizing driver updating software is an easy means of identifying and resolving damaged or out of date driver errors within your computer.
Device Driver is Installed Incorrectly or Damaged
In some instances the device driver is not outdated, but simply has been installed incorrectly. If you just bought your USB device and you are having problems using it, then this is most likely the cause of your problems. However, this possibility should not be ruled out for older devices as well, as driver files can be damaged over time by viruses other computer malfunctions. To fix this problem you will need to reinstall our device drivers correctly. In some instances you may need to download the drivers form the internet again, or reinsert the driver disc to complete a proper installation.