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Unable to locate any drivers for my USB devices

Last response: in Windows 7
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January 30, 2011 8:34:17 AM

I seem to be unable to connect devices via USB and have my Win7 Pro (x64) locate the correct driver for it.

A couple of weeks ago I connected a wireless mouse. I placed the USB receiver into my laptop, I saw the little animated icon in the system tray looking like it was installing something, but after about 20 seconds a bubble told me that driver installation had failed - a driver could not be located.

This morning I connected a headset (headphones & microphone) via USB and got the same result.

In both cases the devices show up under Other devices with a little exclamation mark.

Also, in both cases I could connect the same devices into another laptop (Win7 Ult. x64) and both the mouse and the headset work as expected, but on my laptop the drivers cannot be located.

In the case of the mouse, I found which driver the other laptop had installed for it, located the same on my laptop (it was installed) and manually assigned this driver to the device, but was then told that the device could not be started.

I've placed my system disk back in the drive and asked it to search the disk for drivers, but that doesn't turn up anything either.

Short of re-installing Windows (which I do not want to do), can anyone suggest what might be going wrong?
a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 8:53:15 AM

Try a usb tumb drive, wired keyboard or wired mouse and see if that works, if it does then you need specific drivers for your hardware, try the manufacturers website.
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a b \ Driver
a b D Laptop
a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 8:57:52 AM

I'd try reinstalling the drivers for your motherboard's chipset. It sounds like USB in general isn't working rather than just specific devices.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 9:13:33 AM

sounds like a windows corruption (internal drivers for HID etc) - time for a reinstall
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a b D Laptop
a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 9:15:30 AM

Agreed with ijack. Do you have any yellow exclamation points in your device manager already?
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January 30, 2011 9:56:12 AM

No other devices have exclamation marks, although I have no other USB devices connected.

I did try a wired mouse, and that worked fine.

I have a Dell XPS m1530, so I went to Dell's website and downloaded a wireless mouse driver, although it was for Logitech I just thought I'd give it a go. Anyway, when I tried to install I was told that I already had a more up-to-date driver installed. So I don't have much faith in getting the driver from the Dell website.

Am I right in thinking that I could perform a re-install of Windows and leave my file system intact - apps and all?

In the meantime I'm going to have a look around for a newer chipset driver, although like I said, a wired mouse worked fine.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 10:03:45 AM

a reinstall will leave your files intact aslong as you dont format but not you apps, apps will need reinstalling.
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January 30, 2011 10:16:53 AM

[groan] That's what I feared.

I seriously don't want to do a re-install for these two things - they're not that important. I just don't like the idea that at some level there's something wrong with my system that I can't fix other than re-staging the OS.

So I'm desperately hoping that someone can tell me how to resolve this issue.

I just don't understand why a wired mouse would work (I've never before connected a wired mouse to this laptop so long as I've had it, so it's not as if it already recognised the wired mouse from a previous connection) and yet a wireless mouse isn't recognised.
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a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 10:20:06 AM

try previous system restore points sometimes they help
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a b \ Driver
a b D Laptop
a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 11:08:24 AM

Do the USB Controllers and Hubs show up in Device Manager?
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Best solution

a b \ Driver
a b D Laptop
a b $ Windows 7
January 30, 2011 1:30:56 PM

All looks OK there (apart from the mouse). I'm out of ideas. Perhaps it is reinstall time; but before you go for a full reinstall you might try a repair install.
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January 30, 2011 1:54:28 PM

I think that's what I'm going to have to do, ijack.

In a few weeks I'll have a couple of family-free weekends so I might pencil-in a backup to my NAS box and then a re-install.

I've never done a repair install before - I'll look into that one.

Thanks all for the suggestions.
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February 9, 2011 5:19:13 AM

Best answer selected by awj.
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