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USB Ports missing

February 6, 2009 at 15:45:34
Specs: XP sp2, 1024 MB

My USB ports aren't working right (2 in the back and 1 in the front). Before the last Windows auto update,I had my "stick drive" plugged in the front (F:)and my digital camera plugged in the back.

Now, my front USB is (G:) and my camera isn't recognized and I can't download pictures whether in the front or the back. When the camera is plugged in the front, I get an error message that says: "G:\ is not accessible Incorrect function". When I plug the camera into the back, I get no response but I do hear the audio two-tone.

Pretty wierd! I checked the internet for some solutions but they won't work on my computer no matter how many I try or how well I follow instructions. Got any ideas anybody? It should be simple but I can't figure it out. Please hlep me, Betty


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#1
February 6, 2009 at 19:38:05

It sounds like your USB controllers are enabled in the bios Setup.

You sometimes need to plug USB connected devices into certain USB ports, or your power supply may be starting to fail, or you may have an IRQ sharing problem you need to fix.

See response 3 in this:
http://www.computing.net/answers/wi...

If your power supply is starting to fail, and is not supplying enough of what is supposed to be an accurate 5V, it is very likely your CD and/or DVD drives, and your floppy drive if you have one, and anything you have plugged into a serial port, will not work properly either.
Failing power supplies are common and can cause your symptoms.
Check your PS.
See response 4 in this:
http://www.computing.net/hardware/w...

If all of those things are fine, a power spike or surge, or a power supply while failing, or a static electricty discharge, or a lightning strike near you or on the power grid near you, sometimes damages things on the mboard including the USB controllers. In that case, installing a USB 2.0 controller card or controller adapter and connecting your USB devices to that MIGHT fix the problem.


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#2
February 6, 2009 at 20:01:58

You are supposed to click on the grey rectangular icon with the green arrow on it in your taskbar (it may be hidden - you may need to click on the < there to reveal it) before you unplug many USB devices, such as a flash drive, camera, printer, or external hard drive, and STOP accessing whatever you are unplugging, if the computer is still running and in Windows - did you do that , every time?
If you didn't, you may have damaged the data on the device - if so, it won't work properly connected to another computer either.

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#3
February 7, 2009 at 17:56:58

So - you think not doing the stuff in response 2 is the source of your problem.
Unplugging such devices when the computer is not running does them no harm, and unplugging them when you are in Windows without clicking on the icon and Stopping them first doesn't always harm the data on them, but why take a chance?

- if other USB devices DO NOT work fine in the USB ports, such as a USB mouse or USB keyboard, both of which you don't have to click on the icon for when you unplug them, then something else is wrong.
In that case your "stick pen" and camera MAY work fine when connected to another computer - you could try that in any case - you may have to install software for the camera BEFORE you plug it in, but the "stick pen" should be recognized by Win ME and above automatically, if it's okay.

- if other USB devices work fine in the same USB ports, such as a USB mouse or USB keyboard, both of which you don't have to click on the icon for when you unplug them, then the camera and the "stick pen" drive may have damaged data on them.
....

The "stick pen" drive you can probably fix, but you probably won't be able to recover whatever data is on it now.
Although, you could try searching the web for: recover files USB flash drive
or similar - don't buy a program unless you have no choice - look at least several of the "hits" that have something that might work - usually you can try free ones. OR - you could look on the web site of the manufacturer of the "stick pen" to see if they have anything you can download that might do that. (You may need to fix [not delete and re-make] whatever is wrong with the partition before you can recover any of the data - e.g. search for: fix partition USB flash drive, or similar)

If you can't recover the data already on the "stick pen", or if you don't want to bother (e.g. you may be able to download or otherwise get the same data again),
- You probably need to delete the existing partition(s) on the drive and make (a) new one(s). You can't re-partition a flash drive in Windows XP by default - there are ways around that, but you may have access to another way that can be done.
- Look on the web site of the manufacturer of the "stick pen" to see if they have anything that will re-partition your drive, OR - there may be something like that, that was installed when you installed software from a CD that came with the drive, or that is on the CD that came with the drive that you can install.
If you find that, delete the existing partition on it, make a new one, format it if that's a separate step. If you are given the choice, if your "stick pen" is 2gb or less, use FAT partitioning (or FAT16 if that's there); if it's larger than 2gb, use FAT32 partitioning.

- If you don't have or can't get such a program from those sources, try this:

hp flash drive formatter
http://files.extremeoverclocking.co...

Click on Primary Download Site

"This utility will format any USB flash drive, with your choice of FAT, FAT32, or NTFS partition types.

Delete the existing partition on it, make a new one, format it if that's a separate step. If you are given the choice, if your "stick pen" is 2gb or less, use FAT partitioning (or FAT16 if that's there); if it's larger than 2gb, use FAT32 partitioning.

......

If the data on your camera is damaged, it won't work connected to another computer either. If you want to try that, you may have to install software for the camera on the other computer BEFORE you plug it in - see the installation directions .


If it doesn't work connected to another computer, I need to know which make and model it is, to see what info I can dig up for you.

If the camera has a memory card, and you also have a USB card reader or a card reader slot on the computer that can read it, you can use the card reader to access the files on the card. If you don't have such a card reader they are cheap to buy these days.
.......

You keep mentioning drive letters for the camera or the "stick pen".
Usually USB ports do not have a drive letter when nothing is plugged into them, unless you have an added on USB hub with additional circuits connected to the computer, such as for ports higher up on the front of your case
If the USB ports do not have a drive letter when nothing is plugged into them, Windows assigns drive letters to whatever drive or device that is plugged in that it recognizes that data can be stored on in the alphabetical order of whatever drive letters are not being used by Windows already.
E.g. If Windows is already using C through E, the first USB device that is plugged in that data can be stored on is assigned F, the second one G, etc. If the USB port you plug it into does not have a drive letter when nothing is plugged into it, the Camera or the "stick pen" does not have a drive letter until it's plugged in. Windows XP (and 2000) retains that letter that was assigned for the device until the device is unplugged, even if something else that was unplugged after it was plugged in was assigned a lower drive letter.


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