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USB KVM gets "unknown device" on laptop (works on desktop)

Posted on 2014-12-19
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Last Modified: 2014-12-25
USB KVM stopped working only on my laptop last week.  Dlaptop-usb-kvm-doesn-t-work.docx
Details and screenshots attached.
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Question by:jmeree1
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by:rharland2009
ID: 40509297
Do you get any different result if you connect the USB KVM to a different USB port on the laptop?
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509313
Forgot to mention the KVM is IOGEAR GCS632U (had it for years with multiple computers).  The vendor website doesn't have a driver to download.
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509315
Rharland2009: I've tried both the USB 2.0 and 3.0 ports and the USB 2.0 ports on my dock.
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by:rharland2009
ID: 40509506
Here's what I would try:
Go into Device Manager and uninstall the USB 'Unknown Device'. Reboot your computer. Observe the results post-reboot. I assume you traveled with your laptop and it was disconnected from the KVM for a few days.
I'm also interested in the warning icon on your onboard USB hub. What is the source of that warning/error?
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509515
I've uninstall the "unknown device" device in device manager and I've also uninstalled all the usb devices and rebooted.  Same issue.  When I plug in the kvm I always get that error message "unknown device".  Is that what you mean?
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by:rharland2009
ID: 40509526
Yes, that's what I meant. Beat me to it!
I don't suppose you have an old driver for the KVM or you would have used it by now.
You can try some low-tech stuff, too...I've seen occasional weirdness on laptops where shutting down the laptop, removing the battery (no power attached), waiting a minute, reinserting and starting up anew has resolved some stuff. YMMV, however - it's kind of a crapshoot with no driver.
Any chance you ran Windows updates recently?
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509541
Yes. Windows Update is current and it doesn't find a driver for that.   I've also used system restore to a week ago and that didn't help.  I'll try the battery thing.
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509671
removing the battery didn't work.
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by:rharland2009
ID: 40509727
Sorry to hear that. If you're able, let's try a test.
If you plug that KVM into a different laptop, does THAT work?
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509739
I don't have a different laptop, but the other machine I use on the KVM is a windows 7 desktop and it works fine.
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by:rharland2009
rharland2009 earned 1500 total points
ID: 40509744
Right - I get that. What I mean is this - we're trying to make absolutely sure that it's the KVM and not your laptop's USB ports that are acting weird. It's strange to me that the KVM device works just fine on one side and not on the other. It's one of three things - a problem with the USB port on the KVM, a problem with the USB port(s) on your computer, or simply a missing driver. The driver, of course, still exists on your desktop box - otherwise that wouldn't work either. So if you could borrow another computer - of ANY sort - to connect to the 'problem' side of your KVM, it would tell us a lot.
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40509769
I don't have another laptop so I switched the wires on the kvm and the laptop doesn't work then either.  
I've spent a few hours on this already so I'm going to try upgrading the laptop to windows 8.1 pro.  (backing it up first...)
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rharland2009 earned 1500 total points
ID: 40509780
Before you do that, take one moment and investigate that warning message on your Intel USB 3.0 Root Hub (from the pic you supplied). That's a piece of your comp's hardware and warrants a look. Granted, it shouldn't impact USB 2.0 connections, but still..just see what that warning is first.
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by:JohnnyCanuck
ID: 40510126
I had a similar problem with a USB KVM except it was a desktop instead of a laptop.  The error was a bit different (driver not successfully installed).  The way I got it working was to unplug the KVM, power down the computer, plug in the KVM, turn on the computer.
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Expert Comment

by:nobus
ID: 40510499
try a system restore to a date it worked ok !
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by:jmeree1
ID: 40517705
Upgraded to windows 8.1 and now it works.  Thanks folks for help ruling stuff out.  Too bad it took a bazooka to kill this mosquito :0
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