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Help on my computer to detect external drives

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Last Modified: 2020-08-05
Hi Experts!

My HP360 Windows 10 Pro stopped detecting any USB External Drives.  
Please note, I used to always use external drives with this computer and never had problems.  This problem occur recently and only very little, but sometime the computer does detect an external drive (but I have not been able to recreate this situation to detect possible cause)

My computer HP is a HP Spectre x360 Convertible 13-ac0XX with Windows 10 Pro, with external ports:
  • 1 headphone/microphone combo
  • 2 USB 3.1 Type-C™ Gen 2 (Thunderbolt, Data up to 40 GB/s, Power Delivery, DP1.2, HP Sleep and Charge)
  • 1 USB 3.1 Gen 1 (HP Sleep and Charge)

What I have done so far:
  • I have connected USB External Drives that comes with AC adapter and ones that do not – non work.
  • When I connect the External Drive, you can hear the disk spinning.
  • After testing connecting to both USB ports, and checked Disk Management and Device Manager to see if Windows detect it, and there no sign of any device detected (and the device light is on).
  • All external drives that I connect, their drive lights turns on signaling there is electricity.
  • All external drives has been tested running excellent in my other computers.
  • I have uninstall USB drivers in Device manager.
  • I have used an USB Hub with AC adapter and it did work but later on, stopped.
  • Both USB ports of this computer works because I use USB sticks, UB Hubs and USB transmitter for keyboard/mouse
  • Have logged with another user and created totally new user, and still no detected external drives.
  • I have carefully cleaned the USB ports of the computer, to no avail.
  • Also check with HP website and my drivers seem up-to-date.
  • I have use Add-Device when connecting the external drive to see if that helps - Nope.

Help! Am I missing something?
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Author

Commented:
Forgot to include, also tried disabling the "USB selective suspend setting" in Power Options - didn't do fix anything.

So, I am still checking what can it be...
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Commented:
when you connect the drives - do you get the notification sound?
check for any related errors in event viewer
you can also delete the usb controllers in device manager - and reboot - this will reinstall them
or try usb safely remove, it allow you to connect and remove USB devices without unplugging
https://safelyremove.com/index.htm 
you can also update the drivers  https://support.hp.com/us-en/drivers/selfservice/hp-spectre-13-ac000-x360-convertible-pc/14039877 

Author

Commented:
Hi nobus, no notification, no reaction whatsoever - as said in the question, I would have Disk Management and Device Manager open, connect the external drives; no response.

as for "event viewer", will try.

as for "delete the usb controllers in device manager - and reboot - this will reinstall them", done that.  I even tried "RunDll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll" but nope, no good.

Hey! Just saw th HP link! I always go there and there no updates!  Now, clicking your link, there is!

BiosStatus.jpg

Author

Commented:
Hi!

Just wanted to ask if installing the bios update takes long.  I have left the install in the screen below for at least 34 min.

BiosUodatwScreen

Author

Commented:
Is this time taken for the install normal?
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Commented:
no it works in a couple of minutes Max
for security - make a recovery, or at least copy the bios to a file ( 3rd option)
wjen done - click next

Author

Commented:
Hi nobus, what I did just exit the apps then ran the install under the administrator account and worked; all installed.

Author

Commented:
nobus, forgot to mention that after install the update of the Bios, the problem detecting external drives persist.
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Commented:
to what port are these drives connected ?
can you test if these drives do work with another laptop ?

also post ascreenshot of device manager and disk management showing the disk drives
check also event viewer for errors, and post also a shot

Author

Commented:
to what port are these drives connected ?
Tested on all 3 ports, same results

can you test if these drives do work with another laptop ?
as placed in the question placed; all external drives has been tested running excellent in my other computers

also post a screenshot of device manager and disk management showing the disk drives
as placed in the question placed; After testing connecting to both USB ports, and checked Disk Management and Device Manager to see if Windows detect it, and there no sign of any device detected (and the device light is on).

check also event viewer for errors, and post also a shot
- No activity regarding USB nor drives.  I deleted all events prior connecting and disconnecting the drives, no signal of the computer recognizing the drives.
- but, the computer does recognize USB memory sticks
- also the computer recognize my old disk drives l have.  For example, drives like Seagate 320gb model ST320LT007 (IDE connector for a 2.5" drive) and Samsung 120gb model HM121HC (SATA type connector).  
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Author

Commented:
where are the screenshots i asked? i specificly ask them to see if there are other problems
I deleted all events prior connecting and disconnecting the drives, no signal of the computer recognizing the drives.

But will do again and screen shot it

can you test with Ubuntu if the drives are seen ? ...you install it on the desktop, but it does not change the desktop
Hi, it's over 2gb in size, which mean its a complicated extensive install... and it seems a good step to test if its OS.  Question, I have Hyper-V virtual machines, can I test if the device are being detected there?

Author

Commented:
Hi I download the Ubuntu Desktop completely.

How do u want me to install this?
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Commented:
Yes, I was checking about VM.  Not not a good test since the USB Storage devices has to be pass thru Windows when in VM.  And since maybe is Windows may be messed up in the external drives, test will not work.

Great! That was going to be my question, if I can install UBUNTU somewhere else.  Ok, got it, will install in a USB
Question, even though I will installed in a USB stick, will my Windows 10 be affected in any way? (this is my working computer and don't have another I can do this - and if it get my computer messed, then I will be in trouble)
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Commented:
No - that is the main reaso,n for doing this : NOT touching your Windows

Author

Commented:
Thanx! Will proceed!

Author

Commented:
Wait, let me ask u a question, can I do this installation to the USB stick but in a different computer then bring it here to the troubled computer the tests we need to do?
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Commented:
sure you can do that; you can use it to test ALL your pc's, and laptops

Author

Commented:
ok... on the process (u have given me calm)

Author

Commented:
Followed the instruction, created boot USB, copy over ISO and booted.  

There are 2 button when booted: "Try Ubunto" and install "Ubunto"; the instruction said to "Try Ubuntu".  

Ok, now how do I test the USB External Drive?

Author

Commented:
Just ran the "Try Ubuntu" from USB and inserted the external drive, no luck.  So before I turned Ubuntu off, I connected an old hard drive I had, a Seagate 320gb model ST320LT007, and it workded.  I connected the supposedly problem drive and it worked.  But then it stopped. So I change USB port.  

Noticed that the problem can be in that the computers UBS ports and the devices USB connectors; when connected, they are loosely attached.  I tugged the connector and it would turn off.  Tug it or move in another way, and the computer would detect it.  

This "tugging" "moving" tests I never did it thinking it was not the ports, but it seems it could be.  Right now the external device that had problem connected is connected (and doing an extensive backup).  I noticed that if I move the connection to a specific position, it stays connected.

Another observation, my HPx360 has 3 USB ports, 2 USB 3.1 Type-C and 1 USB 3.1 ports, All external drives new and old, their connectors is the normal USB connector.  So if I connect the new external drive directly to the USB port, there is no sign.  Yet if I connect a USB hub and then the external drive to the USB hub, after moving around the computer port, it connects.

So conclusion, all 3 ports can bad; is that possible?????

The only way I can use an external drive, is using a USB Hub and tugging and moving the USB port connection until it recognize the external drive.

All this said, what is your input? How can I fix this? (if possible)




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Commented:
usb plugs are tiny, so susceptible for jiggling wear, maybe more than USB3.1 ports.
i would try if the usb3 port works, and connect that to a  USB3-hub, to which all EXT drives are connected.
that seems to me the best solution - IF THE USB 3 port is connecting ok

Author

Commented:
Any idea on possible fixing?
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Commented:
Hey u really helped! I this was the 3 question regarding this problem.  Not only u helped soving officially, but I can actually recreate the problem.  So will proceed to close.
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Commented:
hey Jana, what will you do  with this problem, is i may know?
also - try to determine what the problem is exactly: the PC port , or the usb cable connector( that can be replaced easier )

Author

Commented:
Your recommendation of Ubunto got me on the right track.  I though it was software (drives, etc.) but when I saw that in Ubunto worked then stopped it wasn't software.  But the one that got me was when I accidently moved the USB hub connected, it was loose.  Until that moment I thought this problem couldn't be recreated, but seeing this I just move the USB a cable a bit, it would be disconnected.

Next step, get all the info regarding the HPx360 layout, a good tech that can check the ports ad start from there.

I have been able to use the extyernbal drives, just togle move wiggle the USB cable a but and done.

Again, thanx!
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Commented:
yep, but i mean to determine if t-it's the cable or connector.
try holding the connecter firmly - and wiggle the cable, or VV

Author

Commented:
Good idea!!!

Ok will try...

Author

Commented:
It's loose.  In order to have it work, I have to place it in a position and leave it like that - so its point that its the connector or port.

Now, the strange this is that if I connect one of the old  Seagate 320gb model ST320LT007 (IDE connector for a 2.5" drive) or Samsung 120gb model HM121HC (SATA type connector), it works fast - maybe it's how its built? Don't know - but no problem with those.   
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Commented:
probably the wear is different; but it can also come from sturdier materials, as you said

Author

Commented:
Thanx for the follow-up, so kind.
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that's who i am ( but my wife thinks the opposite - don't know why)