Most Common Problems That Users Face With USB Devices

Catherine ManiscalcoAugust 4, 2021,
Most Common Problems That Users Face With USB Devices

With the numerous benefits they bring, USB devices are increasingly popular. These tiny devices can store and transfer data between computers, with their high compatibility, tiny size, and good storage capacity, they prove very beneficial. However, they also occasionally give us some annoying issues that hinder our work. To better understand these issues, we have brought in the tech experts, who have shared the most common technical problems with USBs. They also throw in some tips on what you can do about these issues.

USB Ports Corrupting

“One problem I've seen happen a lot is that for whatever reasons, Windows 10 has a bad habit of corrupting USB ports. I've personally had this happen to nearly every port on a desktop PC and know many people who've experienced similar. Your device will be working fine; then suddenly, Windows just won't recognize that it's plugged in.

“To fix this, you have to go into Device Manager and look for any errors with your USB ports. Usually, the problem ports will have errors and you can fix them without any fuss. But sometimes you'll need to completely disable them and let Windows rebuild them after a restart.”

Christen Costa, CEO Gadget Review

USB Device Not Recognized By The System

“While connecting the USB device to a desktop or laptop, sometimes the USB is not recognized by the other device. This is a common issue that every user faces frequently. A simple hack one can try is ejecting the USB device and inserting it again or simply using another USB cable/pen drive.” (Tanay Sankhe)

USB Paradox

“USB paradox is the term given to the scenario where users insert the USB the wrong way on the first try. Studies show that 86% of users go through a USB paradox experience. The only way to deal with it is to check the USB  twice before inserting it.” (Tanay Sankhe)

Incompatible USB Drivers

“When you connect the USB device to your desktop for the first time, it detects and installs the compatible USB drivers to make it work. Incompatible drivers are one of the main reasons behind USB detection issues. Hence, make sure to install compatible and necessary drivers required for the specific USB device to run.” (Tanay Sankhe)

Error While Ejecting The USB Device

“After getting the job done, when you try to eject the USB device safely, an error message pops up that says, The Device Cannot Be Stopped Right Now. This usually happens when one or multiple files from the USB device are kept open on the desktop. Make sure to close all the files and then try ejecting the USB again.” (Tanay Sankhe)

USB Ports Aren't Working

“Here are few things you can do to fix this: 

a. Restart the computer.

b. Clean out the USB port with a dry cloth.

c. Look for broken internal connections.

d. Use an alternate USB port to check whether the port is at the fault.

e. Try inserting the USB into another computer or use a different USB cable.”

Tanay Sankhe, Software Developer, Content Marketer, and Founder of Smartgadgetpick.com

Damaged Flash Drive USB Connectors

“Damaged flash drive USB connectors are a common type of problem or failure as the flash drives usually stick outside the device, making it easier to knock it off by accident. The best way to deal with such scenarios is to remove the flash drive from the device and never mount it again to prevent further damage.” (Harriet Chan)

Short Circuit

“No matter the microcontroller, oscillator resistor, or capacitor, multiple components inside the USB flash can burn out instantly due to short circuits, and the flash drive will go on strike indefinitely. Deal with this situation by either resorting to data recovery or repairing the failing parts even though the flash will fail soon.” (Harriet Chan)

Device Drive Issue

“In most cases, USB devices are not detected due to an incompatible device driver. For the USB to work properly, there has to be the appropriate driver installed in your device. Also, make sure you have updated your operating system in the case of a computer or laptop. You could otherwise try to place the USB device into another available port of the workstation.”

Harriet Chan, Co-Founder of CocoFinder

USB Connectors on Flash Drives that Have Been Damaged

“I feel that the majority of flash drive customers have experienced this type of failure- USB connectors that have broken. Because a USB flash drive must be placed into a computer, it usually sticks out. As a result, it's very easy to accidentally hit or kick it. In this circumstance, the connector is more likely to deform or break. However, there is a solution. If the connector is truly bent, the power lead may be damaged, resulting in short circuits in the USB flash drive components.

“As a result, you should take it out of the device right now and never plug it back in again. Otherwise, it will cause additional harm and make drive recovery impossible.”

Rameez Usmani, Tech and Security Expert CodeSigningStore


“One of the most common problems is the compatibility issues faced by users of USB devices. USB devices can actually come in 3 different types, USB 1, 2, and 3. The first one is the original USB, which is rarely found in any modern devices since most new computers already come with at least one USB 3 port and with USB 2 as a bare minimum. 

“Although all USB interfaces are backward compatible, problems can arise when you purchase a USB stick or device that uses a slower transfer speed. This can cause stability issues if you are connecting a MIDI device, for instance, as newer software and devices are built to use USB 2 if not 3. 

“The solution is simple, always be aware of what USB ports you are using and always check before you buy a device that uses a USB interface. You can always buy a USB hub or adapter that can help resolve this issue as well. However, as a rule of thumb, always go for USB 3 since devices are only going to get faster, not slower, and it's best to be on top of the latest technology trends.”

Tom Winter, Co-Founder DevSkiller

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