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USB Mouse Not Working on Dell Precision T3400

Posted on 2010-11-12
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
We have a Dell Precision T3400 that has been used in our warehouse for the past year. Last week the user logged a support call as the USB mouse wasn't working. After looking into the issue, we decided to wipe the machine, and reinstall a clean Windows XP SP3 build, and load all of the up to date Dell drivers on.

However, even after all of this, we can't seem to get a mouse working on the system. Plugging a USB mouse in, does cause Windows to detect new hardware, and it successfully installs as a 'Dell Optical Mouse', or other mouse models we've tried. The mouse appears to work for a few seconds while the driver is installing, but about 5 seconds after the hardware has finished instaling, the mouse just stops working, and the pointer remains stuck in the same position on the screen.

We've tried 3 different mice, which we've tested on another system and know they work, we've tried removing all of the USB Human Inteface devices, rebooting, and letting Windows detect the hardware again, we've updated to the latest Dell chipset drivers, we've tried every USB port on the back of the workstation (6 of them), the 2 USB ports on the front. The mouse works on none of them for longer than a few seconds.

The system does have a USB keyboard attached, and this works perfectly, but I haven't tried any other USB device, such as a flash drive, yet, so don't know if these would work!

Has anyone else come across this problem before? Anyone know how to resolve it?
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Question by:bjblackmore
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Expert Comment

by:pjam
ID: 34123932
Since it was in the warehouse for a year it may need a good blowing out with air inside.  Our computers in the stockroom and warehouse get tottally clogged in just 6 months.  since the USB slots are tiny you might even try cleaning them out with a small quetip and alcohol.

Does the T3400 have a PS port for a mouse, you might try that.  That would tell you if your USB hardware is hosed.

And no I have enver heard of that either.  Normally antoher prot works.  It may be the motherboard connection to the USB ports.  Dell Optiplexes and other models have been know to have blown capacitors.  When you open the case to clean it out look for bulging or leaking capacitors.  It just may be near something more fatal.
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Expert Comment

by:eacostam2002
ID: 34123982
Can you try a PS2 mouse? or change a USB connection port, maybe in the back to the case exits more available usb ports.
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by:Tyler Laczko
ID: 34123987
have you tried the mouse in the USB port that the keyboard is using?
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Author Comment

by:bjblackmore
ID: 34124087
I've tried the USB keyboard in each of the USB ports and it works without issue, just seems to be the mice! I will try cleaning the ports just in case though.

I'll try a PS/2 port on Monday, along with some other USB devices like a flash drive. We didn't have any PS/2 mice free today, so I'll have to get one over the weekend.
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by:dbrunton
ID: 34124091
Check the BIOS and see if there is a setting for the USB.  It might be Legacy or something similar.  If you find that option try switching it.
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Author Comment

by:bjblackmore
ID: 34124107
Yes, have tried the mice in all 6 ports on the back, and 2 on the front, none work. Have then tried the keyboard in the same ports and it works.
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by:bjblackmore
ID: 34124148
Will try the BIOS settings when I get in on Monday, and report back my findings.
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by:Tyler Laczko
ID: 34124236
Best option is to use a USB->PS2
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by:bjblackmore
ID: 34136076
Have tested again this morning.

I can get a USB flash drive to work in the 6 rear USB ports, and the 2 front USB ports with out issue. I was able to open the flash drive, view documents, save/write documents.

Having gone into the BIOS the only USB/Mouse options are under 'Onboard Devices' where is says 'Rear Quad USB', 'Rear Dual USB' (the USB ports are 4 together, then beside them 2 together), and 'Front Dual USB', each of these options has 'On' or 'Off' as an option, all were 'On'. Then there is 'Legacy PS/2 Support', this was enabled, but I disabled it to see if that would make any difference - it didn't.

This morning I tested each of the USB ports, with 3 different mice, which I'd tested on another machine. 2 of the mice (Grey/Black Dell Optical mice) failed to work at all on all 6 USB ports. One of the mice (a plain black Dell optical mouse) worked on 1 single USB port. If I try the other 2 mice in this port they work for 5 seconds while new hardware is found, then stop working. If I try the 1 working mouse on any other port, again it works for 5 seconds then stops.

So the current situation, I have a single mouse which does work, on a single port only. My concern is, if this mouse fails/breaks/gets droppped, we'll be stuck again, and it doesn't really solve the root situation, of this PC not working with standard, generic USB mice!
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by:nobus
ID: 34136713
>>  One of the mice (a plain black Dell optical mouse)   <<   that can be it ..i've seen other posts where you needed a Dell mouse on a Dell station - but don't ask me why...
>>  , if this mouse fails/breaks/   <<   then buy another dell mouse

you can also contact Dell with this problem, which seems a proprietary one
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Author Comment

by:bjblackmore
ID: 34137349
The grey/black mice are also Dell! We're going to try upgrading the BIOS, see if it helps. If not we'll call in a Dell engineer!
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by:nobus
ID: 34138071
grey country...  :))
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bjblackmore earned 0 total points
ID: 34179643
After contracting Dell they suggested resetting the bios, installing the Dell system software, and pulling the hard drive and testing it in another precision. None of which worked, however it did narrow the issue down to software/ driver issue rather than hardware, and the mouse still want detected on the other system when we pulled the hard drive!

We then formatted and reinstalled with a genetic windows xp CD, as soon as windows loaded I tested 3 mice in each usb port and each worked!

This appears to have been due to a driver incompatability! The original installation CD was created using nlite, and contained drivers for all our system builds!
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Author Closing Comment

by:bjblackmore
ID: 34272777
Resolved problem myself
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