USB problems workaround

So, tired of windows treating you wrong eh? Well, below are some solutions problems you might experience with USB devices in windows, especially so when the computers resumes from S1/S3 standby or hibernation. However, these tricks can be applied to most any USB device giving you grief and in need of resetting. A reset of a device is almost impossible to automate, so these tricks aren't pretty. At all. Never the less, if you're reading this you probably don't care, right? OK, so let's get down to it.

Note: Off course I won't take responsibility for something you mess up. So if you are thinking of suing me because you wiped out your hard drive attempting the below, tough luck. Won't happen.

Step 1: Getting XP to shut up about device problems. In my case, I got this in my face every time resuming the computer from standby: A USB device has exceeded the power limits of its hub port. For assistance in solving this problem, click this message. Annoying, since its total bullshit (or at least, only temporary when resuming from standby). To get rid of messages like this (and we really really want to don't we?) open the device manager (right-click my computer -> properties -> hardware tab -> device manager). Now, expand the USB group at the bottom of the list and double-click any "Universal Host Controller". Click the "Advanced"-tab, and check the "Don't tell me about USB problems" option at the bottom. Click OK and close the device manager.

Now, this might be enough for some of you. If you're not using the port windows is nagging about then go to the fridge and grab a beer because this is all you have to do in order to shut it up. However, the port/device will still be disabled. If you do need the port/device and still feel eternally damned, read on.

Step 2: Reset USB device/port. This is the tricky and really really ugly part, so lock up you children and pet your dog before proceeding. For this we need a little application called devcon from M$. Grab it and put it in C:Windows (or any other place, but we'll use this in our examples below). Now, start a command line (start menu -> run -> cmd).
Type in as below and press enter. This will produce something similar to this:

C:>devcon find *USB*
USBROOT_HUB4&1C4B7D9B&2 : USB Root Hub
USBROOT_HUB4&24D2BE59&0 : USB Root Hub
USBROOT_HUB204&F180E13&0 : USB Root Hub
USBVID_045E&PID_006DMS187161 : eHome Infrared Receiver
USBVID_07CC&PID_0320454958786469 : USB Mass Storage Device
7 matching device(s) found.

Look for your troubled device. If your problems involves the device being shutdown, or it's just a USB port without a device attached you won't get away with resetting the device itself, but rather the hub it's attached to. How you can find out which device uses which hub I don't know, I just used the old faithful Trial and Error method. There's probably a more clever way of adressing the devices, but if you need that you'll have to find out for yourself.

In the case of the port itself being the problem, it's the name of the hub you'll use aswell. In the example above it's the "USB Mass Storage Device" that keeps shutting down, and I found out by trying a few times it's connected to ROOT_HUB20. If you have a device that is working (windows hasn't shut it down) and simply needs resetting you can probably get away with processing the actual device, but I've never tried this. Next up:

C:>devcon remove *ROOT_HUB20*
USBROOT_HUB204&F180E13&0 : Removed
1 device(s) removed.

C:>devcon rescan
Scanning for new hardware.
Scanning completed.

Now windows should remove and re-detect the hub and any eventual devices attached to it. If not, you probably got the wrong hub. Redo the above until you find the right one.

Great, now we've managed to reset the device. Let's do a batch file outta this so we don't have to poke around manually every time we need a reset. Create a new text file, and then rename it to usbreset.bat. Right-click it and choose "Edit". Put in the following:

C:WINDOWSdevcon remove *ROOT_HUB20*
C:WINDOWSdevcon rescan

If you're not experiencing your problems when windows resumes from standby, this is probably the end of the line. Just put the batch file on your desktop or similar and run it whenever you want to reset the device. However, if you are having the problems on resume and still feel somewhat damned, read on.

Step 3: Automating it. We're getting closer. Can you fee-e-ee-l it? We need some more stuff for this next step, namely a sleep command and Nate DeSimone's neat Hibernate Trigger. Put sleep.exe in C:Windows to start with. We now need to edit our batch-file again as below:

C:WINDOWSsleep 5
C:WINDOWSdevcon remove *ROOT_HUB20*
C:WINDOWSsleep 2
C:WINDOWSdevcon rescan

This is to cut the hardware some slack when waking up all dazed and confused. I wouldn't mind a program like this myself in the morning. Anyways, save the file and put it in C:Windows. Then install Hibernate Trigger we just downloaded, and choose to have it start with windows.

Now start it, and on the second line (wakeup command) input "C:WINDOWSusbreset.bat" (yes, without the "'s). Check the minimize box if you will and then minimize the application. This should be it! Try sedating the machine, wake it, get upset when it isn't working, fiddle around some more and then finally go get yourself a beer when you got it working.

Daniel Lundberg

E-Mail: d1a1n1i2e2l2@3d3t3i4.4n4u (remove digits for address).


shamim i did not understand a word of what is written on it.

Timid Hi. I'd just like to ask why does this sort of thing happen? My usb port does not have anything plugged into it yet it says power surge. Keep resetting and closing it and itl keep annoying you. When I try to use the port, no power is given. Does our usb ports have any sort of defect to trigger such events? I have to admit this problem started to happen when I hibernated an iPod Video and its been happening ever since... Thanks for the advice!

Daniel No, devcon is the command-line version of device manager, so it does exactly the same thing. The benefit is it can be put in a batch file and automated so you don't have to do anything manually.

Ralph Smorra Is the benefit to using Devcon just the fact that it can be put in a batch file (compared to removing and scanning for hardware changes in Device Manager?)

Skyking2020 Thanks a lot Man, loading a new USB driver didn't work but this proceedure worked. I put devcon.exe in ROOT that is C:. So I had to change the USB Reset batch file accordingly.

Nataliya Hi Daniel, I'm guessing its your name ;)
I tried to do it without instructions first. someone guggested the devcon. But only with you devcon download it worked, i guess i got wrong file before.
But I still have a problem. I tried to reset usb at work. The device is recognized, when inserted, BUT does not show up with all other drives. Devoce manager is restricted by admin, maybe its hidden or something. Do you know how can I actually find it and use it?
I would really appreciate some input. Thanks a bunch.
Please reply to my email: I cannot use work email to write this. they log ;((

MT Rock on! Thanks!

Sashenzia Thanks for great helping!

Look... how to find out on witch root_hub is device set:
run devmgmt.msc, find all root_hubs, click on it and see page "power.." for you device name and than "details" "device instance info...".
Here is this line, like USBROOT_HUB3&33C4A719&0
That's it!

Kevin Likewise - had this problem for 4 days now - the mans a friar tucking genius

Daniel Comment...We got a problem?


dk Thanks! This worked like a charm.

Marcus What do you know... this actaully worked! Thanks a bunch, I've been having this problem for ages without ever finding a fix!

Power Surge Problem : VERY SIMPLE SOLUTION

I have got a VERY SIMPLE SOLUTION for the Power Surge problem. I know that even if you have not connected any USB devices, you might still encounter a problem with a power surge error popping up which is annoying, all one has to do

1. Go to Device Manager.
2. Right-click on USB port that you have a problem
3. Select Properties & choose the Advanced tab
4. If a check mark is not ticked, click on the check-mark next to Don't tell me about USB errors.

Power Surge -fix

I have a Dell that had the same problem - I was able to go to Dell's website and get a fix for it - installed and have not had a problem. Check for postings from "ginnpr"

If nothing works Try THIS !!

You might use a cable of this kind. Hook one end to your device and the other two ends in two separate usb ports on ur pc/laptop. One of these two usb ends is a (Power + Control) end and the other one is only a Power end. First trying using the (Power + Control) end only if you still get the error put the (only Power) end in an USB port first and then put the (Power + Control) end in another USB port. Then your error should stop.

What kind of Cable????
That depends on what sort of usb port your device has. Is it a small usb port or a normal usb port. I guess its a small usb port (which is called a mini-usb).

Check this link. You might buy it from this site.

Such cables are usually shipped along with 2.5" USB Hard drive enclosures if you buy one. Even if you go Best Buy or some other electronics store and buy a 2.5" Hard drive enclosure (called notebook hard drive enclosure) then the package should contain such kind of cable called a USB Y- Cable.