USB Device Not Working After Turning Computer On

Hi there. I have a USB card swipe reader which basically acts as a keyboard input device; typing magnetic strip data into Word, Excel etc however, I'm having issues with it when I shut the computer down and then come to turn it back on and use it again - it won't work. To solve this I have to unplug the USB and plug it back in... Every time! Help would be appreciated. Many thanks!

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Clarification Request
Not much detail.

So the generic advice follows.

1. Try other USB ports.
2. Since it never worked, it's a warranty issue. Get them to fix or refund.

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Hi. Sorry, the operating system is Windows 10 Pro and it's a Lenovo tower computer. I've tried all the different USB ports on the computer but I'm pretty certain it's something wrong with the computer, or its BIOS, as it works fine after re-plugging it in..

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For desktops

Avoid the front USB ports. Also, try Grif's ideas.

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What Computer? What "Reader" Software?

The make and model of the computer? Operating system used? Have you tried uninstalling, then reinstalling the card reader, including any updated software from the manufacturer's website? Does it stay functional if you leave the computer on "standby" or "Hibernation"?

Hope this helps and let us know more.


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Hi Grif. It's a Lenovo Thinkcentre Edge computer running Windows 10 Pro as its OS. Yes, I've tried uninstalling drivers and the device etc. Its OK, if you put the computer into 'Sleep' but haven't tried hibernation as it doesn't show up in my power options list. Thanks.

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Try Updating the BIOS and Running Chkdsk

Especially with Windows 10, an updated BIOS can make a difference, so give it a try. Check the version currently on the computer, then visit the manufacturer's website and download/install their latest version.

Also, it seems as though the Windows 10 "upgrade" process may not install all the files correctly, or maybe they're damaged, or maybe something else, but running Chkdsk has fixed quite a few of these minor glitches. Try running Chkdsk in "repair" mode to find any damaged files and correct them. Start by opening a command prompt as an admin. RIGHT click on the Start button, choose "Command Prompt (Admin). (Or type "Command" in the search line, then RIGHT click on the "Command Prompt" listing at the top, choose "Run as admin".) Once there, type chkdsk /f /r /x, leaving the appropriate spaces between the letters as shown, then press the Enter key. You should see a note that it can't be run till a restart is done, type "Y" for yes, then press the Enter key again. Close the command prompt and restart the computer. Chkdsk will run upon restart and will take quite a while to finish.. Don't panic when the progress bar stays at 10% for a long time. It's fairly normal and the Chkdsk process may take a couple of hours.

When it's finished, it will boot to your normal startup/lock screen and you can login normally and then see if things are working correctly again.

Hope this helps.


Post was last edited on July 18, 2018 11:25 AM PDT

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