New for Windows 8: Problem Descriptions for USB Devices and Hubs in Device Manager


Perhaps the most commonly encountered problem with USB devices is enumeration failure. If a USB device fails to enumerate successfully it will appear in Device Manager with a problem code of 43, and will be listed as an “Unknown Device” If Windows was unable to identify the device before it failed enumeration. There are a number of reasons why a USB device can fail to enumerate, however the specific reason for the failure has not been easily discovered without using diagnostic tools such as USB ETW logging.

Windows 8 will now provide a problem description in Device Manager for USB devices that have failed to enumerate, and for USB hubs that have failed during operation. When one of these failures occurs, the USB device’s status on its “General” property page will display a problem description indicating what the failure was. Below is an example device status for a USB device that failed because it returned an invalid USB configuration descriptor. The problem description is highlighted.

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The possible problem descriptions that can be returned for a USB device that failed enumeration in Windows 8 are:

  • A request for the USB device descriptor failed.
  • The USB set address request failed.
  • A USB port reset request failed.
  • A previous instance of the USB device was not removed.
  • The USB device returned an invalid USB configuration descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid USB device descriptor.
  • Unable to access the registry.
  • A request for the USB configuration descriptor failed.
  • A request for the USB device’s port status failed.
  • The USB device returned an invalid serial number string.
  • The USB set SEL request failed.
  • A request for the USB BOS descriptor failed.
  • A request for the USB device qualifier descriptor failed.
  • A request for the USB serial number string descriptor failed.
  • A request for the USB language ID string descriptor failed.
  • A request for the USB product description string descriptor failed.
  • A request for the Microsoft OS extended configuration descriptor failed.
  • A request for the Microsoft OS container ID descriptor failed.
  • The USB device returned an invalid USB BOS descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid USB device qualifier descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid USB language ID string descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid Microsoft OS container ID descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid Microsoft OS extended configuration descriptor.
  • The USB device returned an invalid product description string descriptor.
  • The SuperSpeed link to the USB device keeps going to an error state SSInactive.
  • The SuperSpeed link to the USB device keeps going to an error state Compliance. If the device is removable, remove the device and then disable/enable from device manager to recover.
  • The USB device is not compatible with Windows.

The possible problem descriptions for a USB hub failure in Windows 8 are:

  • The USB hub returned an invalid port status.
  • The USB hub failed a control transfer request.
  • The USB hub failed an interrupt transfer request.
  • The USB hub failed to reset.

To resolve these errors a user should follow the steps outlined in the blog post What to Try When Your USB Device is an "Unknown Device". A USB device developer encountering any of these errors should investigate further using USB ETW logging.

-Martin Borve


Comments (9)

  1. For a mass storage device that has been prepared for "Safe removal" but not yet removed from the computer, the device should not show at all in Device Manager at all once it is safely removed. Showing it with a yellow exclamation mark and telling the user "To fix this problem, unplug the device and then plug it again" is wrong, not an optimal UX.

  2. Kalle Olavi Niemitalo says:

    Is there a DEVPROPKEY for reading the problem description via SetupDiGetDeviceProperty?  I guess DEVPKEY_Device_ProblemCode is not it, because the screen shot still indicates Code 43.

  3. Pete says:

    What is "The USB set SEL request failed"? How do you fix it or how do you avoid this error?

  4. Thomas says:

    Same error as Pete: The USB set SEL request failed. Code 10

  5. USB Blog says:

    The manufacturer needs to update the firmware to support or stall the SET_SEL request, which is used for power management and required by the USB 3.0 specification. More info in this blog post: blogs.msdn.com/…/common-issues-in-usb-3-0-devices.aspx

  6. AndrewW says:

    This is very annoying I am unable to get to my tower usb ports easily so eveytime this issue happens. Which is almost everyday I have to reboot the machine because I have no mouse or keyboard or  unplug the usb devices at the back of the machine.

    my hardware is not old. its an i3 cpu and asus board.. this really isn't good enough..

  7. sewing824 says:

    I had a Seagate USB backup drive fail and Windows (Windows 8.1-64) absolutely refused to accept that it was never going to be connected again and kept trying to connect to the device and giving me an  "unknown usb device (port reset failed)/ error code 43" error in device manager, and when I tried just uninstalling it it would always reappear. Since I was unable to find a way to make it stop I opened a program I had downloaded a long time ago, USBDeviceview (free at http://www.nirsoft.net/…/usb_devices_view.html), and it allowed me to tell windows the device was disconnected. All I had to do was find the device in the list, right click on it and select disconnect device (apparently the f9 key would do the same thing after clicking on/selecting the device). What ever you do don't accidentally disconnect your mouse or keyboard or you'll be scrambling to unplug and replug its cable to get Windows to recognize it again!

    I tried uninstalling and reinstalling the hubs, but all that did for me was make my mouse and keyboard stop working and make it very hard to reboot (finally had to do a hard reset with the power button). And then when all was "said and done" after that disaster the device and error reappeared.

  8. DeborahN says:

    Brand new HP with Windows 8.1 64 – USB port failure Error 43   failed during use of my Seagate backup drive.   and now this same Seagate drive can not been seen by my windows 7 laptop.   In fact everything I plug into either USB port on my new laptop fails with error 43 and then no longer works properly on any other laptop…  

    The seagate drive is still working evening though my windows 7 laptop cannot see the data.    With the purchase of seagate rescue recovery software I can  recover my files.  thank goodness.    Seagate tells me I will need to reformat the drive and then it should work again….  

    However,  I still have not been able to resolve the USB port failure Error 43 on the new windows 8.1 laptop.   I have tried everything at HP and with Windows support  including uninstalling and reinstalling the hubs.   I did run an error event report…  its greek to me but maybe it will help you to help me solve this problem

    Info from: Device Manager:    Unknown USB Device  (device descriptor request failed)

    Device Type:Universal Serial Bus controllers

    Manufacturer: (Standard USB Host Controller)

    Location: Port_#0002.Hub_#0001

    Windows has stopped this device because it has reported problems. (Code 43)

    A request for the USB device descriptor failed.

    EVENTS

    Device USBVID_0000&PID_00025&291db893&0&2 was configured.

    Driver Name: usb.inf

    Class Guid: {36FC9E60-C465-11CF-8056-444553540000}

    Driver Date: 06/21/2006

    Driver Version: 6.3.9600.17238

    Driver Provider: Microsoft

    Driver Section: BADDEVICE.Dev.NT

    Driver Rank: 0xFF0000

    Matching Device Id: USBDEVICE_DESCRIPTOR_FAILURE

    Outranked Drivers: usb.inf:USBDEVICE_DESCRIPTOR_FAILURE:00FF2000

    Device Updated: false

    Event Log

    Source:411 Kernel PnP

    Provider

    [ Name] Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-PnP

    [ Guid] {9C205A39-1250-487D-ABD7-E831C6290539}

    EventID 411

    Version 0

    Level 2

    Task 0

    Opcode 0

    Keywords 0x2000000000000000

    – TimeCreated

    [ SystemTime] 2014-10-12T03:07:56.573314800Z

    EventRecordID 838

    Correlation

    – Execution

    [ ProcessID] 4

    [ ThreadID] 8804

    Channel Microsoft-Windows-Kernel-PnP/Configuration

    Computer Deborah-Work-Touchpad

    – Security

    [ UserID] S-1-5-18

    – EventData

    DeviceInstanceId USBVID_0000&PID_00025&291db893&0&2

    DriverName usb.inf

    ClassGuid {36FC9E60-C465-11CF-8056-444553540000}

    ServiceName

    LowerFilters

    UpperFilters

    Problem 0x2b

    Status 0x0

  9. POSPrinter says:

    I had a similar issue with a generic brand POS receipt printer.  Unfortunately I was testing on a PC that ONLY had USB 3 ports, but the live environment POS workstations only had USB 2 ports.  When I tested with a USB 2 port all was fixed.