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USB Port Malfunction

Posted on 2009-12-24
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Last Modified: 2012-05-08
Hi,
I have a USB port problem. The story is as follows. I had an external hard disk plugged into one of my USB ports. I wanted to remove it, so I closed all the files and then went to "safely remove hardware". It said, for reasons I don't understand, that the device was still in use. I didn't feel like doing a reboot, so instead, perhaps rashly, I just unplugged the external hard disk. Now I am having problems with the port. I tried shutting off the machine and then turning it on again, but this did not help. FYI, the OS I am running is Vista Business. How can I fix this?
Thanks,
David
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Question by:David_Zucker
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14 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:wfcraven12
ID: 26120106
are you getting an error message?  
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26120163
Dear wfcraven,
No, I do not get any error message.
But when I plug a device into the port, it does not work.
Thanks,
David
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Expert Comment

by:wfcraven12
ID: 26120183
hmm. if you pull up device manager, are any of the USB ports highlighted as having an error?  if not, you may want to get the chipset driver from the computer manufacturer & reinstall it.  that should fix it for sure.
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Expert Comment

by:☠ MASQ ☠
ID: 26120590
It this a powered hub or did the device that was disconnected have a separate exteranl power source?
Will any device work in the port?  Mouse, keyboard, data stick?
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26120689
Hi,
It is a powered hub. No devices will work in the port.
I tried the following steps:
1. Windows Vista Restore
2. Running the Intel INF Update Utility for the 900 series chipset (my system has the 965 Express Chipset Family). (It took me considerable time to figure out how to do this step.)
Neither of these steps solved the problem.
One interesting fact is that I have two ports one right above the other, one works and one does not,
but if I plug a device into the nonworking port, the working port stops working as well.
(Lucky for me I have some additional ports as well, so I'm not totally paralyzed).
I'd be interested in further suggestions.
Please note that I am leaving the office now, and I will be out tomorrow and Saturday, so it won't be until Sunday that I'll get a chance to try the next suggestions.
If you are going to suggest that I reinstall some other drivers, please give me clear directions about how to determine which driver I need and how I access it, so I don't wind up spending a lot of time figuring this out for myself.
I appreciate your help very much.
Regards,
David
0
 

Expert Comment

by:achan_lek
ID: 26120986
Hi David:

In my experiences as a Tech Support Guy, most probably THAT USB port of yours has been damaged! As you have replied previously you have two USB ports, one is working and the other is not working even though you plug in any devices. So I am assuming that the USB port you mentioned is broken.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26121817
in device manager>view  click "show hidden devices" and delete all usb devices there
reboot and test
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26127535
nobus,
Can you please give some more specific guidance on how I navigate the device manager and carry out the operation you suggested, so that I don't mistakenly delete/disable the wrong thing and get myself into big trouble?
Thanks,
David
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26127555
nobus,
By the way, do you agree with achan_lek's suggestion that the USB port is just plain damaged?
Thanks,
David
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26127841
you can't miss : i posted " delete ALL usb devices there"
why should i agree with someone else?  i have no proof.
you realise that this is a guessing game?  depending on the info we get the guesses become better - but not 100%
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26128168
Hi,
OK, I tried deleting all the USB devices and doing a reboot.
Unfortunately, it didn't solve the problem.
Anything else to try?
Thanks,
David
0
 
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 26129898
remove the hub, and connect a working device (flash stick) to it to test
test all usb connectors with it
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Accepted Solution

by:
PCBONEZ earned 2000 total points
ID: 26130237
You 'pulled the plug' before Windows was done with the drive.
That means the motor was running and the voltage spike from disconnecting under load probably fried your USB chip.

The fix is to get an add-in USB card.
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Author Comment

by:David_Zucker
ID: 26138320
Hi,
At this it seems to me most likely that I simply fried the USB chip.
So I am just going to live with it and move on.
I guess I've learned my lesson from this.
Many thanks to all who responded.
Regards,
David
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