One common scenario is that Plug n Play for USB devices stops working after the hard drive has been formatted or replaced. Sometimes, it stops working after a Windows update. When Plug n Play isn’t working correctly, it opens the Found New Hardware wizard to search for drivers for the connected device even though it doesn’t have any drivers. This problem is a real hardship for people using a PS/2 to USB device to connect important components like an older PS/2 keyboard, mouse, etc.
It can be a real puzzle to figure out what’s wrong with the Plug n Play after Windows XP has been reloaded successfully, all the drivers added, all the software updated, and everything working fine except the Plug n Play. It turns out that the Universal Plug n Play is not automatically installed along with Windows XP or at least not turned on. Regardless of what caused Plug n Play to stop working, try the below steps to get it to working again.
In the Control Panel, if in Category View, click on Performance and Maintenance then go to Administrative Tools. Choose: “Services.” In the new window that pops up, scroll down to: “Universal Plug And Play Device Host.” It should be set to: Automatic. If it says manual or disabled, change it to automatic and then select start. Next, scroll to “plug and play” and it should also be set to automatic. Then scroll to “SSDP discovery service” to make sure it is set to manual. Finally, “windows media player network service” should also be set to manual.
The next step is to go to Add or Remove Programs in the Control Panel. On the left side of the screen, click on Add/Remove Windows Components. In the Components list (which is a new window that pops up), scroll down and select the check box for Networking Services, and then click on Details. The Universal Plug and Play check box should be selected, but if isn’t, select it. Then choose “Next” so that the computer can complete the changes.
If the Plug n Play still isn’t working and is still opening the Found New Hardware wizard then here is a workaround to get the Plug n Play device to working. Go through the Found New Hardware wizard’s steps and choose to install the drivers from C:/WINDOWS/inf which is a hidden folder on the computer. (Note: If the INF folder is missing from the computer then that’s a separate issue altogether that needs resolving.)
It may take a few tries for the Found New Hardware wizard to install the drivers from that folder that it needs for the Plug n Play device, but then it should say that it was successful, and not open the Found New Hardware wizard again when that device is connected.
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