Windows 7 forum


No USB devices are working

by Goosehu / July 10, 2013 5:58 AM PDT

Hello all,

Recently I have found that no USB devices attached to my computer work, this includes built in webcam and Bluetooth radio.

When I attach a USB mouse or mass storage device absolutely nothing happens. No error boxes appear, nothing in device manager changes and no events appear in the system event viewer.

The event log does show a BTHUSB error event ID 17, and message saying "The local Bluetooth adapter has failed in an undetermined manner and will not be used. The driver has been unloaded."

In addition there warning saying "A command sent to the adapter has timed out. The adapter did not respond." event ID 3 and a log saying "Windows cannot store Bluetooth authentication codes (link keys) on the local adapter. Bluetooth keyboards might not work in the system BIOS during startup."

In device manager BT radio and BT virtual devices are missing, even when enabling hidden devices and were only viewable when I enabled show removed devices. There are duplications of all BT virtual devices.

In addition the USB2.0 built-in webcam has disappeared from device manager entirely.

In device manager I can see USB root hub x2, Intel(R) 5 Series/3400 Series Chipset Family USB Enhanced Host Controller - 3B34/3B3C x2, Generic USB hub x2.

All drivers are reportedly up-to-date and none of them have any yellow triangles or warnings next to them.

Disk manager also shows no evidence of any attached USB storage devices so cannot see it being an issue with a lack of drive letters.

To date I have uninstalled and installed all drivers.

I have ensured all drivers are present checked against other windows 7 machine and USB stack architecture on Microsoft site.

When I enabled viewing of removed devices then checked 'show hidden devices' there were a large number of ghost devices which I have removed incase they were exceeding some magic number of 100. I don't know whether I need to go into the regedit again to delete any coresponding keys, I couldn't find enough info to know it was safe/which ones to delete.

Going into regedit have ensured all start dword values are 3 not 4 for all files as well as matching regkeys with working windows 7 machine.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Executive, additionalcriticalworkerthreads dword value is 2.

Have unchecked power option to switch power off to USB controller.

Plug and play services are working as far as I can tell with no system logs indicating otherwise.

No option in BIOS to do anymore than alter system time/date, enable power-on/bios password and boot priority and intel virtualisation technology.

I am on a Sony Vaio laptop VPCEB3C5E running Windows 7 Home premium on a Intel i3 with amd64 architecture. Happy to provide any additional info.

I have been through this and other forums and tried every fix that I could find and nothing quite replicated my problem it seemed, sorry if this has been replicated else but I couldn't find a solution.

Any help on where to go next would be much appreciated as I have hit a dead end with where to go.

Many thanks in advance and hope we can find a solution.


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All Answers

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Have you tried a test?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 10, 2013 6:48 AM PDT

When I see a machine like this I'll boot a LiveCD called Ubuntu to see if that works with USB flash drives and such.

It's very odd to install drivers today on laptops. They usually come with a ready to use OS and drivers all working. There are reasons for this failure such as malware, rootkits and just plain old the hardware has died which is why I use the LiveCD to get a direction on if it's hardware or a bad OSandDrivers.

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No joy on Ubuntu either
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 6:49 AM PDT
In reply to: Have you tried a test?

Hi Bob,

Thanks for the advice, have run Ubuntu live CD, am doing now infact and still no joy, no USB devices being recognised at all. SD card is still recognised but nothing for USB. I'm not in anyway familiar with ubuntu or Unix-like systems so have no idea how to troubleshoot from this end.

Does this then narrow it down to a BIOS/Hardware issue? Would you recommend a BIOS update and if so where would you recommend finding BIOS updates, sony, msft or other?

Thanks for the help so far and, as ever, any further advice is gratefully received


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That does help.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 11, 2013 6:56 AM PDT

The newer laptops I see have settings in the BIOS to "secure" the USB and if I were to take a bet I wonder if a new owner may think this would be for security in virus or other protection and they could turn that on.

So while you did reveal it's a Sony VPCEB3C5E I can't find the manual so it's up to you to check those BIOS settings. For almost all of us, you want the defaults.

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To the BIOS!!!
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 7:03 AM PDT
In reply to: That does help.

Thanks for the swift reply.

I'll go hunting through for and then through the manual. I have been getting to the setup screen by pressing F2 and the 'run in safemode' screen by pressing F8. It does ask for a 'BIOS' password when I press F2, (I set one a while back with no issues) but it doesn't seem to be quite as powerful as other BIOS interfaces. Is there anything I could be missing that you readily no of? Otherwise I can go hunting.

Cheers again for everything and I'll check back.

Oh, the laptop was bought back in Dec' 2010...would you still qualify it as a 'Newer laptop'?

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PS. Link, comment
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 11, 2013 7:09 AM PDT
In reply to: That does help.

I did fetch the English manuals but they never broached the area I need details about. That is, screenshots of the BIOS settings, reset there of and well, pretty poor job documenting that at all.

It's as if they didn't want to publish that detail.
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Manual issues etc
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 7:23 AM PDT
In reply to: PS. Link, comment

Yes I have come across that problem with them, it mostly told me how to turn it on, connect a mouse and run a program, I gave up there pretty quick and i have also seen great discrepency between UK and US site with US site having many more drivers/downloads available but less specific help.

Found a discussion on the sony BIOS it seems that it is pretty locked down which was the feeling I got. Just a boot priority menu, password select for power on, BIOS and system and date/time, as said before.

I'll hunt down a BIOS fix and see where I get to, on the bright side it still works otherwise and was about to start building my own box so at least I have more of a reason.

If I get anywhere I'll let you.

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Wish they had published pictures.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 11, 2013 7:30 AM PDT
In reply to: Manual issues etc

But as a last hurrah look for "bios default", "reset" but be careful as some may mean reset as in reload the factory OS.

I don't want to sound down or giving up but it's starting to sound like the machine has failed. If your story included "it was dropped" then I would have called it already.

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I was getting that feeling - but IRQs?
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 8:43 AM PDT

There is a reload default settings but I'm reluctant to do that since the system actually works but for the USB, I was trying to think if I'd knocked it somehow but really can't remember anything significant.

As my last hurrah I'm chasing down IRQs, I read something about them before and whether conflicts can occur, my Intel USB host controler 3B3C is sharing IRQ 16 with a few other adapters but what I read was that since 2000ish it was possible for them to share IRQs.

Just noticed, my other Intel USB host controller is on IRQ 23,(and the other on 16 now I think about it) namely a virtual one, is this/are these an issue? Never heard of IRQ until now so don't know significance of this finding.

Probably another deadend and seems fairly low level with far reaching consequences if I'm reading this stuff right, which I'm probably not atm.

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I would have loaded the BIOS defaults by now.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 11, 2013 8:48 AM PDT

As to IRQs, sorry but I have yet to see that issue for over a decade. And even then it was on an ISA bus which is well, Jurassic period gear.

I don't want to upset you but if you can't bring yourself to load the BIOS defaults, a shop counter will do that for you as the first aid and hope it avoids the next diagnosis (bad motherboard.)

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No worries
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 8:56 AM PDT

I think I'll chalk this one up to experience and once I have backed up everything I think I'll reload defaults as you say and hope the motherboard isn't fried...out of interest...could over heating do something like this? I keep it on hard flat surfaces etc but the fan is often having to work pretty hard, I always guessed it shuts down automatically before any permanent damage can be done.

Anyhow, cheers for all the help, if I do reload I'll update the post with outcome.

There is at least a bit of a list of possible troubleshooting methods I guess, should really try and consolidate that into something succinct.

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IRQ = ?Deadend
by Goosehu / July 11, 2013 8:47 AM PDT

Yeah found some screen shots with similar USB/Bus controllers on same IRQs with similar conflicts...I'll just make do with SD card transfers I guess

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / July 11, 2013 9:05 AM PDT

The method I use at the office varies with the machine and the issue. For this one I would use the LiveCD to sniff out if the USB ports were working or not.

-> Result? They didn't work.

This lead me to wonder if the BIOS had them disabled.

-> Result? No good online manual showing the BIOS options. Ouch.

This leads me to load the BIOS defaults and hope for the best.

-> Result? The owner is worried about that.

All this can't be foreseen but if I wanted to be succinct I guess I could have moved to "replace the motherboard since that would get our BIOS defaults and replace any possible bad chips or ports in one go. But all this was to give it the best shot at avoiding that.

Hope this shows the thought process in this case but to write out what would be my usual diagnostic and treatment plan ahead of the preliminary testing would result in me writing sharing dead ends and more.

As to the heat issue, it's a bit late and would not cure a board gone bad but we want to use the canned air on the vents every few months to head off dust and lint buildup. There are those that think it drives the dirt and lint deeper but that's good news for the industry. (more PC sales!)

Hope this clears up where and what we were doing here.

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