Sign in with
Sign up | Sign in
Your question

WinXP - PS/2 keyboard not present

Last response: in Windows XP
July 13, 2010 7:31:17 PM


A friend of mine has been given a computer without a keyboard. It works fine except WinXP doesn't find a keyboard when a normal PS/2 keyboard is connected. The keyboard is working fine when running DOS or BIOS setup.

I tried reinstalling WinXP but the keyboard doesn't work after booting the XP cdrom.

Now the computer says "Restarting XP installation" after booting from the hdd. But it doesn't complete the installation without an usable keyboard.

Does anybody have a great idea how to fix this?

Many thanks for reading this.


More about : winxp keyboard present

a b \ Driver
July 13, 2010 8:25:50 PM

You need to boot into the BIOS, and enable the PS2 keyboard, or switch to a USB keyboard.
July 14, 2010 11:59:41 AM

Thanks for this reply but this is not the solution. I have checked the BIOS settings (even tried the opposites before returning to the correct settings) to no avail.
Related resources
July 14, 2010 12:04:30 PM

The thought of connecting a USB keyboard while WinXP is running crossed my mind but I do not have any USB keyboard available (lot's of ps/2 kbs) and now the system is stuck in "Restarting XP installation".
July 14, 2010 12:09:41 PM

Before posting here I have been searching the Internet and I found many similar problems.

(Computer without keyboard. WinXP doesn't find the keyboard after connecting a standard ps/2 keyboard).

But I couldn't find any case that has been solved.

I guess a real expert is needed to solve this.

a b \ Driver
July 14, 2010 12:10:22 PM

Try booting into safe mode. Check the device manager to see if there is a keyboard listed. If yes, right click and uninstall it, then restart. If not, look for device conflicts (yellow X's)

Did you not see a setting in the BIOS for PS2/USB keyboard settings, or was the PS2 already enabled?
July 14, 2010 12:19:16 PM

Again thanks for the reply.

I have booted the system into safe mode. The device manager doesn't show a keyboard.

Also the control panel / keyboard / hardware window doesn't show a keyboard.

There is no keyboard ps2/usb setting in the BIOS.

Many thanks for your effort.

a b \ Driver
July 14, 2010 1:20:32 PM

What model PC is it? Or what kind of motherboard does it have? BIOS version?

In the device manager, right click on keyboards, and scan for new hardware.
July 14, 2010 1:46:41 PM

I don't know the make and model of the PC at the moment. I don't have it here.

It has been bought and has been used as a gaming machine. I remember it has an AMD CPU, possibly 3000+ running @ 2 GHz and I seem to remember it has 2 GB of main memory. It has a Geforce graphics card, possibly some 7600 type. I also seem to remember it has a Award BIOS but I am not sure about that. But it is nothing special. Just an ordinary machine bought at some store.

If you need information about the exact components I could drive to my friend's house and check it out. It is not far and my friend should be home from work shortly now.

The device manager doesn't show a keyboard field. I have tried "scan for new hardware" but to no avail.

Again, many thanks for your efforts.


a b \ Driver
July 14, 2010 2:35:40 PM

Can you boot into the repair console?

If you can get into a DOS prompt or the repair console, insert the XP disc, and run sfc /scannow.
a b \ Driver
July 14, 2010 2:38:17 PM

Do you have any USB keyboards to try with?
July 14, 2010 2:43:24 PM

Thanks, I will try this. I will contact my friend and I will try to do this this evening. I will surely report back to you.

Many thanks,


July 14, 2010 2:51:45 PM

No, I do not have any USB keyboard. I have a lot of ps/2 keyboards. I have been thinking if I know anybody owning a USB keyboard I could lent for an hour but no-one came up.

I will try your tip booting DOS, load CDrom drivers and run sfc /scannow.

I also prepared a virusscanner that might run from DOS but still might be able to scan a NTFS drive. (I don't put much trust in this solving the problem but one never knows).

I will try to put both possible solutions to the test this evening and I will surely report back to you when I have the result.

Many thanks,


a b \ Driver
July 14, 2010 2:54:32 PM

You're welcome....good luck.
July 14, 2010 3:07:12 PM

July 15, 2010 12:26:44 PM

Dear Sir,

Yesterday I have been busy with the computer until 4 AM. I have been trying lots of things but, at first, I got nowhere. Booting the hdd resulted in resuming the aborted installation of WinXP and booting the WinXP install disk got me nowhere as I couldn't enter the "R" key for repair or the "Enter" key for a fresh installation.

I even contacted the former owner of the computer. He stated the machine had been working fine but he had bought a new one and he kept the keyboard for use with the new computer. I was hoping he had been using some exotic keyboard and this might be the reason WinXP didn't find a regular keyboard anymore.

The guy offered to come over with the original keyboard he had always used with the computer. But when he arrived it turned out to be just a plain ps/2 keyboard. It didn't come as a surprise to me that this keyboard performed exactly the same as the other keyboards I tried. So I thanked him and he went home.

Meanwhile the keyboard(s) still worked fine while running DOS or Linux as well as in the BIOS setup. But already after booting the WinXP setup disk the keyboard didn't work.

But at one time, while pressing "Del" to start the BIOS setup program, it failed to go to the BIOS setup. This was repeated three times. Then, after booting the system, the keyboard LEDs started blinking erratic and the BIOS reported: "No keyboard present or keyboard error". This was repeated three consecutive times.

The fourth time the BIOS didn't report the keyboard error and the LEDs didn't blink erratic. The WinXP install disk booted normally and I was able to press "Enter" to select a fresh installation. Also during the rest of the installation process the keyboard worked correctly. The keyboard kept working after the reboot in during the installation process.

But after WinXP started for the first time the keyboard was again dead. Pressing a key also froze the mouse. But using only the mouse and the "Character Map" utility under "System tools" I was able to finish Windows install.

Again there was no keyboard listed under Control Panel / Keyboard / Hardware. There also was no keyboard listed under System / Properties / Hardware. And still the keyboard worked while running BIOS setup.

But while taking care not to use the keyboard the computer was working ok.

I fear there is some freak problem with the ps/2 keyboard controller and I advised my friend to go and buy himself a USB keyboard. I hope and trust the computer will work fine when using a USB keyboard.

Albeit unsatisfactory not being able to find and understand the exact cause of the problem and not being able to mend it I guess using a USB keyboard is the next best thing. My friend can use his computer and he doesn't care about the problem while he isn't bothered by it.

The computer is a Asus A7V600-X with VIA VT8377 and VT8237 chip-set and an Award Medallion BIOS V6.0 Rev. 1006 with an AMD 3000+ @ 2 GHz and 2 GB RAM.

I like to thank you very much for your efforts. I have enjoyed our correspondence. I apologize for any language errors as I am Dutch and English is not my native language.

Again, many thanks for your efforts and the support.


a b \ Driver
July 15, 2010 1:37:11 PM

It seems that specific motherboard has had some issues with using PS2 keyboards. There have been 2 BIOS updates that included PS2 keyboard support improvements. The latest BIOS version, is 1009. Check out the link here. Enter the motherboard model in the 'download' box in the top left corner. Click on the BIOS history to see current and past revisions and fixes.
You can update to the latest version, and it may fix the problem.
July 15, 2010 2:49:20 PM

I have downloaded the new BIOS. I will try it but I fear it won't make any difference as the computer has formerly worked without any problems with the keyboard. Now it has the same problems with several ps/2 keyboards, including the original one.

Again many thanks for your reply and the tip. I will report the result of the BIOS upgrade to you.


a b \ Driver
July 15, 2010 2:56:44 PM

Thanks and good luck.
July 16, 2010 12:40:23 PM

I have loaded the new firmware into the BIOS but this didn't solve the problem with the keyboard.

My friend has bought himself a USB keyboard and with this keyboard the computer works without any problem. This keyboard is correctly listed in the control panel / keyboard / hardware window as well as in the system / hardware list.

I guess the ps/2 keyboard port has some freak problem.

I still don't really understand why the ps/2 keyboard port was working OK for the previous owner and does work while running DOS or Linux but doesn't function while running WinXP but this wasn't the first time I encountered a system that failed while running WinXP but ran DOS seemingly trouble free.

In that case I found three of a group of four capacitors near the CPU didn't look well and I blamed them. I guessed the CPU ran OK in x86 mode but failed while running in protected mode.

However my friend's computer is now running nicely and he isn't concerned about the ps/2 port as he doesn't need it. My friend is happy as am I.

I would like to thank you for all your efforts, your tips and trying to help me solve the problem.



a b \ Driver
July 16, 2010 2:39:55 PM

I still think the problem is in the keyboard/legacy BIOS setting. That's really the only other thing that could cause it to stop working in windows.

Good to hear that it's back up and running. Thanks for the update Fred.
July 17, 2010 10:59:08 AM

The BIOS has no keyboard PS/2 - USB setting.

It provides a "legacy USB" setting. I have tried this several times without avail.

Moreover, unlike the early versions, the WinXP version I used can be installed while using USB devices like a mouse or a keyboard.

Again thanks,

September 26, 2012 4:04:32 AM

the best solution is remove the C-Mos Battery and insert again....then restart,,,...and dont forget insert the your desired keyboard to use (PS2 keyboard / USB keyboard).,,and finally restart,,hit the F1 to change the time
November 28, 2012 12:18:30 AM

The BIOS has no keyboard PS/2 - USB setting.

It provides a "legacy USB" setting. I have tried this several times without avail.

Moreover, unlike the early versions, the WinXP version I used can be installed while using USB devices like a mouse or a keyboard.

Again thanks,


I have a same problem with U, but now it has been fixed.
my step solution :
1. Go to "Device Manager"
2. Explore the "System Device" (klik the "+" icon)
3. Search for "warning sign" device in the System Device (yellow exclamation)
4. Right click and uninstall it
5. Do scanning device
6. if u still found a "warning sign" again, do step 4-5 again until u not find the "warning sign"
7. Restart the computer

:D  :D