How to fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error on Windows 10?

Question

Issue: How to fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error on Windows 10?

So I eventually decided to upgrade my PC to Windows 10. Just like most of its users, I started encountering problems right after the upgrade. Each time I try to open .exe file I get a pop-up message saying “A device attached to the system is not functioning.” I did not get this message under other circumstances yet, but I’m not going to wait until it reoccurs. I have no external hardware attacked. I’m stuck. Please, help!

Solved Answer

“A device attached to the system is not functioning” is Windows 10 specific error, which shows up in a form of pop-up window. It can be closed quite simply – just by clicking on the X button at the top-right corner of the pop-up.

Usually, it shows up when the PC is connected with an external hard drive,[1] USB or another device. In this case, the error is merely an attempt to inform the PC’s user that the external device is malfunctioning and needs proper maintenance.

However, “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error often shows up in Windows 10 PCs and laptops without an external device connected. It may spring up when trying to open an .exe,[2] .doc, .png or other file types. Sometimes, it prevents files from being copied from desktop to another folder or vice versa.

Although it’s not a fatal error, it is rather annoying, especially if it affects files like .png or .exe. While sometimes the culprit of the problem may be a corrupted software, usually it stems from corrupted system files, virus infection, damaged Windows update files (if the problem started right after the update), and similar.

More often than not, the “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error occurs with the external device attached, so it’s advisable to address the external device in the first place. If that did not help, we’ll try to explain you how to perform Windows diagnostics and how to fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error in a comprehensive manner.

“A device attached to the system is not functioning” error

How to fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

You should check the system with ReimageMac Washing Machine X9 before going for more in-depth manual solutions. Actually, you can scan the system with any professional anti-virus tool also to see if any PUPs are running on the PC. However, we recommend using the program designed for PC repair and system optimization, so the program can fix various system-related problems at the same time. This program is dubbed as an optimization tool as it contains a huge database of Windows system files and components, so it’s capable of fixing or replacing the damaged ones. At the same time, it scans the system for viruses and malware. Thus, it’s worth trying.

Run a System File Checker

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.
  • Launch Command Prompt and make sure to choose the Run as administrator option.
  • Type sfc/scannow and hit Enter.
  • Allow the processing.
  • You can continue with DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth command.

If your PC is connected with the external device

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

In case “A device attached to the system is not functioning” pop-up shows up with the external device connected, first of all disconnect the external device, reboot your PC, and then try to reconnect it. If the problem reoccurs, try using another USB data cable[3] to check if it’s not the culprit.

Format the USB storage device

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

Before doing that, backup all important data that is stored on it. You can do that on another PC. Once done, you should:

  1. Open This PC and right-click on your USB device drive.
  2. Select Format.
  3. Configure the format settings and click Start. Format tjhe external drive

If formatting did not fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error, follow:

Update drivers on the machine to fix “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

You can update your drivers and keep them up to date with tools like DriverFix. The program can find the compatible drivers and install them, find the newest ones and save you some hassle. Of course, you can also go the manual route:

  • Right-click Start and choose Device Manager there or right-click the Start menu and choose Run.
  • Type devmgmt.msc and hit OK.
  • Locate the drivers there.
  • Right-click the driver and choose the Update driver option.
  • Choose Search automatically for updated driver software.
  • Repeat with other needed drivers.

Update the Universal Serial Bus Controllers driver

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.
  1. Right-click on Windows key and select Device Manager.
  2. Expand the Universal Serial Bus Controllers tab and update all USB-related drivers.
    Update drivers
  3. For this purpose, right-click on the device and select Update driver.
  4. Finally, reboot your PC.

If your PC is NOT connected with the external device

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

In case you get an error “A device attached to the system is not functioning,” we would recommend you to boot your PC into Safe Mode to check if the problem persists. This will help to identify whether the issue is due to some third-party programs conflict.

Boot PC in Safe Mode

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.
  1. Press Windows key + I to open Settings.
  2. Open Update and Security section and click on Recovery.
  3. Under Advanced startup, click Restart now button. Boot into Safe Mode
  4. When the PC restarts, you’ll see a Choose an option screen. Select Troubleshoot.
  5. If you can’t see Startup Settings, click Advanced options and then select Startup Settings.
  6. Select Restart and select Safe Mode on the Startup Settings screen.
  7. Now sign in as administrator and check if “A device attached to the system is not functioning” error occurs anyway.

Perform a Clean boot

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage Reimage.

This way, you’ll be able to isolate the problematic software and, furthermore, fix it.

  1. Click Windows key + R and type msconfig.
  2. On the System Configuration windows open the Services tab.
  3. Mark Hide all Microsoft services box and select Disable all.
  4. Open Startup tab and click Open Task Manager. perform a clean boot
  5. Click on each startup item and select Disable.
  6. Close Task Manager and click OK on the System Configuration window.
  7. Reboot the system.

Repair your Errors automatically

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Access geo-restricted video content with a VPN

Private Internet Access is a VPN that can prevent your Internet Service Provider, the government, and third-parties from tracking your online and allow you to stay completely anonymous. The software provides dedicated servers for torrenting and streaming, ensuring optimal performance and not slowing you down. You can also bypass geo-restrictions and view such services as Netflix, BBC, Disney+, and other popular streaming services without limitations, regardless of where you are.

Don’t pay ransomware authors – use alternative data recovery options

Malware attacks, particularly ransomware, are by far the biggest danger to your pictures, videos, work, or school files. Since cybercriminals use a robust encryption algorithm to lock data, it can no longer be used until a ransom in bitcoin is paid. Instead of paying hackers, you should first try to use alternative recovery methods that could help you to retrieve at least some portion of the lost data. Otherwise, you could also lose your money, along with the files. One of the best tools that could restore at least some of the encrypted files –  Data Recovery Pro.

About the author
Julie Splinters - Computer optimization specialist

When it comes to computer optimization, Julie Splinters is the expert. Whether it is a slow smartphone, Windows, Mac or Linux operating system, she will find a solution within minutes.

Contact Julie Splinters
About the company Esolutions

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