Problems With USB Hubs


USB hubs are small devices that give us the ability to plug several USB devices into a USB hub on a computer or onto another hub. These devices come in several varieties, the most common being a small box that has several ports for plugging in external equipment. Sometimes USB ports go bad, but a small bit of troubleshooting can often solve the problem.

High Speed Hub

  • Sometimes, the problems with USB hubs are as simple as the high speed USB device being plugged into a low speed USB hub on the home computer. If a high speed device such as a camera is plugged into the hub, and the hub is plugged into a low speed device, an error message will appear telling you that the 2.0 USB device is plugged into a low speed 1.0 USB hub. Try another port. If no other ports exist, some computers have an expansion card slot that will allow high speed transfers on your computer if you buy the correct PC card.

Power Management

  • On Windows, there is a power management protocol that turns off USB devices that are not being used. Sometimes this will cause USB hubs to turn off intermittently. To fix this, go to:
    "My Computer > Properties > Hardware > Device Manager > USB Serial Bus Controllers > Power Management."

    Then make sure to turn off the "Allow the Computer to Turn Off" device to save power.

No Communication

  • If the computer is not detecting the USB hub, make sure that it is connected properly. Check to see that the hub has power. If it does not, reseat all the cords. If it still does not have power, try another cord and another USB hub. If it still does not power on, check to see if any other USB devices will work on the computer. If they do, it is likely an issue with the computer.

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