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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am having trouble using my USB ports. I am using windows XP with SP3. I have 6 USB ports on my computer they have all worked fine until a few months ago. At one point, I had 3 external hard drives, 1 mouse, and 1 printer hooked up at the same time. All were working fine. Now, the printer, mouse, and 1 external hard drive work, but nothing else will. When I plug in a new device, I get the message..."ONE OF THE USB DEVICES ATTACHED TO THIS COMPUTER HAS MALFUNCTIONED AND WINDOWS DOES NOT RECOGNIZE IT."

The non-working devices work on other computers. I have tried many different USB devices including new, never used devices. None are recognized. The currently working external hard drive is recognized in every port. I don't remember installing anything new just prior to this problem starting. I have tried uninstalling the drivers and rebooting so that windows will reinstall the drivers.

Please help. My computer skills are above average, but I am far from a computer guru and this problem is quite frustrating.

Thanks,
Mitch
 

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Have you visited your computer manufactures website to see if there are any known issues with that model and if there are any updated drivers for your motherboard? That is what I would check first.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
All of my drivers are up to date according to HP. I couldn't find any known issues and I've tried the fixes suggested @ hp.com

My computer is...
[*]HP Pavillion a1110n
[*]intel celeron 3.06 GHz processor
[*]2 GB RAM
[*]250 W max output
 

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I did a quick search on the error msg and it seems like it can be solved by simply powering down and unplugging the computer for an unspecified amount of time.

Give that a try and see if it helps.
 

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if cetkats suggestion does not solve the problem then its likely a motherboard problem however the 250 watt power supply is suspect too problem with HPs most standard pc power supplies will not fit in the space they have for the original powersupply. i have had to take tin snips and modify the case to mount a more standard power supply with more watts like a 450 watt one.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
More info: I tried uninstalling the drivers for the second time and then letting windows reinstall them after a reboot. I then plugged in a device and a message appeared saying that the drivers were installed for the device and that it is ready to be used. A few seconds later, the error message appears saying that the device has malfunctioned and it is not recognized. I don't know if this means anything to anyone, but the fact that it works for a few seconds seems useful.

The current 250 w power supply has been working with all of the ex-hard drives for two or three years, so it seems unlikely that there is inadequate power unless the power supply no longer can provide the same output that it originally did. Do power supplies sometimes behave this way?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks for leading me down the power source troubleshooting...

I recently (about the time the problem started) got a new power strip with a master and slaves that switch off phantom power for all of the extras that go along with the compuer. Basically monitor, printer, speakers, ex-hard drives etc are slave to the tower. When the tower is switched off nothing can draw power in standby mode. Apparently this didn't allow one of external hard drives to get enough power through the AC adapter even when power was switch on. I'm guessing that the drive then turned to the computer for the power through the USB port which left the other ports lacking power.

I switched the AC adapter on the external hard drive to a constant power source and now all usb ports can be powered at the same time.

Thanks for the help.
 
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