How to fix USB Device Malfunctioned Error

by Abhishek Bhatnagar on April 23, 2008

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Trouble:

One of our readers Suhaneh, submitted a trouble “USB Device Malfunction Error message coming even no USB device connected to system“.

USB Device

This kind of trouble really sounded very strange. It gave me a very interesting topic to research upon. What I found as a solution was even more strange than the problem. On searching the causes for such errors I came across about problems when people are using their USB devices and they work well. Other moment the USB device will stop working and will give error:

“USB DEVICE MALFUNCTIONED”

 

There are several hardware, software, and drivers related reasons for behind this problem.

 

Let us look into the details one by one.


Fix:

There can be more than one reasons for such things happening. Lets see one by one:

 

1. Really Crazy Sounding Fix : When I tell you this fix, you may think that I have gone crazy writing technical articles, but keep reading for the logic behind it. the solution is

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” Turn off your computer, un-plug the power cord (or battery for a laptop) of your computer for about 30 minutes, plug the power cables back, restart the computer and the problem will be fixed “

Now the logic behind it : This is supposed to be a software as well as hardware problem. Windows keeps a table or cache of USB devices that were ever connected to it. This information is stored on some chip level memory on motherboard. When some entry goes wrong, or some stray behavior is there, it remains and is not flushed even on shutting down the computer. Removing the power altogether will cause the charges on mother-board to discharge completely and the entries are freshly created when you re-start next time. Thanks NT Compatible forum for this really interesting thread about this problem.

If this does not solve your problem, there may be problem due to reason 2 and/or 3 as mentioned below.

 

2. Missing or incompatible drivers : Make sure that you have motherboard chipset drivers installed and also the USB device’s drivers which you want to use.

 

3. Selective Suspend feature of USB : This feature will allow windows to control USB device power as needed. This setting also causes problem some times. See the fix by Microsoft Support here.

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{ 59 comments… read them below or add one }

renan April 24, 2008 at 8:43 pm

just wanna say,ahm,,your solutions fixes down to the cracks,,hehe.it helps more to those crazy problems to computers,keep up the good work men. mabuhay ka

Brian June 2, 2008 at 1:56 pm

WOW…..I cant believe that acutally worked. I was a bit skeptical, but figured what the hell. I did it in 10 minutes by removing the JBATT jumper on the motherboard and unplugging the PC. Turned it on, POST told me the CPU changed and CMOS defaults were loaded, enter setup and save settings. I did that, updated the time and crossed fingers. VICTORY!!!!!

RYAN October 5, 2008 at 4:10 am

your GREAT GUYS!! I HOPE YOU CAN HELP ME BY RETRIEVING MY COMMAND PROMPT. BECAUSE IT’ LOST IN MY ACCESSORIES THANKS

mona October 18, 2008 at 3:37 am

when i m trying to open my pen drive it coming pls insert disk into drive G.
and also my pen drive size is coming 0 bytes

yuvaraj November 12, 2008 at 2:29 am

my usb drive is transcend. when i insert into usb port, it shows “your usb drive is malfunctioned & windows doesnot recognize it”…….please tell me the solution for that?????????……..

Wasi December 4, 2008 at 2:22 am

hye guys.im facing the same prob. as yuvaraj is facing…my usb has all my important data.just since morning when i inserted in one of computer lab’s pc its showing dat usb device has mal funciton n til now im fade up of searching but no results to fix this pro.i havent yet tried above mentioned solution,ill do it but does it really work?? i dont wana loose the data..its too mch important.. help me out…also my usb is heating up, can any budy tell why is like dat??

Bob January 1, 2009 at 5:34 pm

I have this problem with the $mft file on a USB drive — and like nearly everyone — spent hours trying to find a solution. I read this suggestion about unplugging all power and connections overnight.

This morning I plugged everything back in and for about the first four minutes, the desktop recognized the USB drive and I was able to move 3/4 of the data to the desktop’s C drive.

Then the same old problem started again, and I couldn’t move any additional files from the USB drive (I got the most important data though).

Thank God I got the data I did — but I can’t solve the underlying problem. I tried some file recovery softward and it doesn’t work. I can see the folders and files on the USB drive, but the mft is apparently broken and I can’t get to them.

Any further suggestions?

Thanks!

lulz January 4, 2009 at 12:19 pm

My wireless USB mouse works properly usually but it has 2 problems:
it frequently stops working for like half a second-4 sec.
it sometimes completely stops working and usually replugging the USB helps [sometimes it takes a few tries]

Hope you can solve this :C

mayank April 19, 2009 at 9:08 pm

thats great to see that it really fixed the problem let me chech any way !!!!

ronald abad April 21, 2009 at 8:29 pm

Hi guys anyone help me regarding on my laptop,im facing a problem on my USB, It has no power, it cant recognize any usb or even a usb mouse.I already reformatted it, install the driver, but same result.

i hope anyone could help me
thnks

Manish July 4, 2009 at 8:12 am

Pls give me solution for this error : bluetooth device has malfunctioned and windows does not recognize it . I format my computer but the error are coming again

JD August 26, 2009 at 1:45 am

Hi abhisekh…yaar i got problem with ma USB ports. I using hp compaq nc6000 laptop. And windows xp professional 2002. When i insert pendrive, Mouse, bluetooth, mobiles data cable it dosent work and come eror msg USB NOT RECOGNIZE. UR USB MALFUNCTIONED AND WINDOWS DOESN’T SUPPORT IT.  Pls tell me what i do for solve ths prob..i formatted my laptop 2 times bt still nt working port….pls help me :-(

danster johnston October 15, 2009 at 3:44 am

i have problem with ma usb disk. when m tryin to copy items into usb it says, disk protected or use another disk. but when m copy from usb to another divice it does copy…..
pls help i have really really important documents there an i cant afford to looze them..

Mahaboob December 23, 2009 at 10:52 pm

my usb drive is transcend. when i insert into usb port, it shows “your usb drive is malfunctioned & windows doesnot recognize it”…….please tell me the solution for that?????????……..

bizzzo January 15, 2010 at 7:42 pm

That Really Crazy Sounding Fix it works for me, turned off my PC and unplugged it.. half hour later works.

vineet January 29, 2010 at 10:51 pm

my usb drive is kingston. when i insert into usb port, it shows “your usb drive is malfunctioned & windows doesnot recognize it”…….please tell me the solution for that?

lance February 3, 2010 at 6:17 pm

i have a problem with my a data usb when i inserted it on my laptop it is still detected but when i will open it this msg appears “pls insert a disk” how can i solve that???

SUNDARRAJ February 9, 2010 at 7:59 am

MY pen drive cannot be formatted after using disk checking it shows Windows was unable to complete the disk check

Alex February 28, 2010 at 6:52 am

Worked like a charm…thanks!

RONALD ELLAMS March 6, 2010 at 9:45 pm

My mouse is still frozen up even after unplugging the mains lead from the computer for 30 minutes Using another good mouse didn’t solve the problem I will have to scrap the hard drive and start all over again with a new one!

prafull pandey March 10, 2010 at 2:36 am

whenever I plug my pendrive in my computer or in other Pc it does nothing but if I push it side ways it starts working.I have to keep my fingers on the pendrive so that it can work properly.Please help me.Thanx in advance.

Clifford April 15, 2010 at 5:22 pm

Im getting the same problem please help me, this is whats happening i put usb in it says USB MALFUNCTION then i restart computer then it works fine. Now when i restart the computer its starting not to work… Please help me this is a new computer (PRYON) and when i called manufacturer they just said reformat it pelase help..

thegame May 17, 2010 at 8:36 pm

SYSTEM RESTORE WILL WORK//

visitor July 14, 2010 at 11:13 pm

Thank you so much! It worked perfectly!!

Adhi Siva July 20, 2010 at 12:28 pm

Sir, i have a problem in USB in my PC. It wroks well while im using the cam too.. But i dont know the reason it shows malfuntion all the time, when i insert the webcam or PenDrive and many more.. How cani solve this problem? Even i install fresh OS also i have the same problem again and again. When i start to install the Motherboard CD, when it starts to Software utility CD for the motherboard It shows that USB malfunctioning and can’t use.. Pls help me how to solve this problem..

rajshekhar July 22, 2010 at 3:14 pm

sir,
when i attach another usb net connector that connector works properly….
but wheb i attachmy problematic net connect the error comes usb malfunction…..

Terry Hollett September 4, 2010 at 11:31 pm

I have a flash drive and it works sometimes but at other times I have to plug it in and restart the computer. I don’t have to wait 30 minutes. Just an ordinary restart. Usually then windows picks it up and installs it properly.

(Insert name here) September 28, 2010 at 1:34 pm

Works fine, my “Fix” is to hold the power button down until the PC kills power, then turn back on, dividing your fix solutions time by 60. ;p Turning 30 minutes, into 30 seconds..

I get the USB Malfunction notice when I accidentally lie on my mouse cord, I believe the ‘Malfunction’ is because I stretch the cord, so everyone else out there, if you’re getting the malfunction message, your cord connected to your device, or the device it’s self could be faulty, causing the USB’s to malfunction and disable, they disable until next restart possibly to protect themselves from further damage.

Avadhesh October 2, 2010 at 12:16 am

I have kingston pendrive…when i insert it in system,it shows usb has malfunctioned. it shows zero capacity tell the solution…

PRAKHAR RASTOGI November 11, 2010 at 4:23 pm

when i insert into usb port, it shows “your usb drive is malfunctioned & windows doesnot recognize it”…….

Jay December 19, 2010 at 3:39 am

I am having i ball pen drive.when i am insert in usb port they messege one of usb mail function & not recgnise.i have stored my important data in that.without formating how can i recover data.please guide me.

Bill T. January 1, 2011 at 7:27 pm

Just wanted to thank you for the suggestion to disconnect the battery from my laptop to clear the USB malfuntion issue. I never would have thought to try such a thing. It is nice when I can actually use the internet to help find suggestions that might fix computer issues, and you had the right solution.
Thanks again.

Eileen S. January 17, 2011 at 10:28 pm

Can’t thank you enough! It worked!! Woot Woot!! After trying several other suggestions that did not resolve the problem. I turn my laptop off, unplugged the power cord.. and did not reboot until the following morning.. Problem SOLVED! I was worried I would have to bring my laptop in for a repair of some kind and be without it for however long that would take. Relieved your suggestion corrected/fixed the problem. Sincere Appreciations!!

MaHo February 1, 2011 at 5:32 pm

Thank you so much!! The crazy solution works!!!

ritu February 7, 2011 at 10:47 pm

this crazy solution really works.thanks a lot for it and it doesn’t takes 30 mins also

shashank bassi February 15, 2011 at 11:49 pm

when i insert my iball ultrastrong usb, pop up msg shows that usb is malfunctioned and cant be recognized by windows7..and when i click msg it shows unknown device
this usb is earlier used as bootable drive for pinguy os

Anigmy April 2, 2011 at 1:08 am

Earlier I had a Transcend 4gb pendrive. One day windows 7 report that YOUR DEVICE CAN PERFORM FASTER. To do that it advice me to disable and then uninstall device. Since then the when I plug it windows report that USB NOT RECOGNIZE. UR USB MALFUNCTIONED AND WINDOWS DOESN’T SUPPORT IT. Well it over..
Again I bought a iBall 4gb pen drive on 14january. But this time I have done nothing and same problem occur. What can I do? Is there enemity between Windows 7 and me? Please help me.

Christina Shiatis May 3, 2011 at 7:50 pm

Thank you. Worked a treat.

deepak May 26, 2011 at 9:34 am

whenever i try to insert my pen drive the notation is that
your pen drive contain malfunction..
so what to do to remove this malfunction…

vickey July 14, 2011 at 2:40 pm

friends please help me in my usb port if i connect my usb mouse or usb webcam its working fine
but if i connect my usb hardisk or usb pendrive it says Not Recognized all the time and thes is the error code Windows has stopped this device because it has reported problems. (Code 43) plese help me please………….

Nitin August 16, 2011 at 6:41 pm

usb drive not recognized error is occuring in my Dell notebook what will i do pliz tell.I have gone through above methods but…

Roger August 21, 2011 at 11:27 am

WOW!!! I swear, I tried EVERYTHING, except unplugging the computer. THIS WORKED!

I didn’t even wait but about 5 minutes though. Thanks!!!

gaurav September 6, 2011 at 6:49 pm

whenever i connect usb device in the usb port it shows a message – usb device not recognized(one of the usb device attached to this computer has malfunctioned, and windows doesnot recogninize it

ravi September 24, 2011 at 7:16 pm

whenever i connectkingston datatraveler pen drive in the usb port it shows a message – usb device not recognized(one of the usb device attached to this computer has malfunctioned, and windows doesnot recogninize it,while other pen drive work properly.

.

Prashanth October 28, 2011 at 9:11 pm

Hi,
When I got a personal call which I don’t want to attend in front of others, I hastily removed my Mobile device which was connected via USB cable to my Laptop for internet connection yesterday.
After the call I again connected my mobile device and Laptop but my Laptop failed to detect the mobile device and showed me the “Malfunction error”. I restarted my laptop and again tried but no use.
So I made a quick search on Google on my friends computer for a solution and found this article.
And happy to say that the first tip, i.e. remove battery for half an hour, itself helped me to sort out the issue.
Thanks.

palanikumar December 9, 2011 at 9:10 am

I have a problem in starting the computer my monitor gets off when i switched on my computer and in monitor displays no signal but the cpu is working properly. but it displays all bootable things. Before to open the welcome of desktop it gets off the monitor and displays no signal. I’m using gigabit mother board and I cleaned the cpu then also i face same problem. please tell me solution to this problem to

ADI December 16, 2011 at 8:09 pm

WOW nice,

these suggestions are not solving my drive problem. Tell something new.

vithushan December 23, 2011 at 10:14 pm

when i connect my pen drive i cant see my drive what can i do ………..

this fucking thing is making me crazy

Ashiq December 25, 2011 at 12:34 pm

my usb drive is transcend of 4GB. when i insert into usb port, it shows “your usb drive is malfunctioned & windows doesnot recognize it”…….please tell me the solution for that?????????……..

Maria January 31, 2012 at 8:12 pm

OMG! It actually worked! You are GOD !!

sunil patel February 24, 2012 at 4:04 pm

many time try and tired for sd card insert in computer and messege as ” insert a disk in to drive h:
kindly give proper advise and any brand sd card has a same messege if any free download software about sd card kindly mail to me on excise007@yahoo.com
Thanks,

Ameer February 27, 2012 at 10:11 am

when i plug the USB in to my CPU showing one of your device malfunctioned not supporting window please help me to solve this problem

Garry March 9, 2012 at 6:31 am

when i plug the USB in to my CPU showing one of your device malfunctioned not supporting window please help me to solve this problem….so i took the advise from the above Number 1, surprise, surprise, it worked. so i cut and paste the process below. Thank you guys…Garry

1. Really Crazy Sounding Fix : When I tell you this fix, you may think that I have gone crazy writing technical articles, but keep reading for the logic behind it. the solution is

” Turn off your computer, un-plug the power cord (or battery for a laptop) of your computer for about 30 minutes, plug the power cables back, restart the computer and the problem will be fixed “

king April 15, 2012 at 7:10 pm

is there any possibilities that the usb has malfunction and will never open again?

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