How to use an external camera for Windows Hello?

Question

Issue: How to use an external camera for Windows Hello?

I have an issue with the Windows Hello feature and external camera. When the laptop's lid is closed, the support is not working. The device is plugged in via USB, and the camera is compatible with this because it works when the computer is running normally. The operating system is not allowing the feature to respond. Can I somehow change settings to use Windows Hello with the external camera?

Solved Answer

To use an external camera for Windows Hello, the device need to be compatible with the Windows Hello feature.[1] People encounter various issues with this function and report their concerns online, including the issue with the closed lid of the laptop and not responding to Windows Hello[2] or the general issue with external camera usage.

The function might not use the external camera for face recognition if the operation of the camera is occupied and the system in general tries to use the built-in camera of the system, and some errors occur. Issues can arise when the camera usage fails. Windows update[3] can be responsible for this.

There are various problems when the camera might be used with other programs, but the use of an external camera for Windows Hello is failing. You can try to reboot the system before doing anything else or disable all devices to connect them again newly.

Compatibility issue is also important in this case. The device should be suitable with the Windows Hello function, but other system issues like corrupted files or faulty third-party apps can lead to system problems. You can check the machine for particular affected data problems with ReimageMac Washing Machine X9. The tool finds and fixes those issues for you.

Other fixes might include temporary changes, troubleshooting, so you can connect the external camera for Windows Hello and use it as you want, even though the lid is closed. Upgrading the machine is always a good idea, especially when you find other system problems bothering you, so check if the version of your OS is the latest and not containing any bugs before moving to the methods listed.

Use external camera for Windows Hello

1. Disconnect devices from your system

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  • Shut down the computer and detach other devices from your machine.
  • Make sure to directly attach your camera to the system via an active USB port.
  • Power on the machine and check if the camera is working fine.
  • Add other pieces one by one.

2. Disable the internal camera

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  • Right-click the Windows button to launch the Quick access menu.
  • Choose Device Manager.
    Device manager access
  • Expand the Cameras section or Imaging Devices and right-click on the camera.
  • Choose to Disable the internal camera.
    Disable device
  • Disable all pieces if there are more than two pieces.
  • Expand the Imaging Devices to see if the external camera is enabled.
    Enable device
  • Reboot the machine and check if the camera is working.

3. Boot the system into BIOS

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  • Detach the external camera from the system.
  • Click on Restart while holding the Shift key.
  • Choose Troubleshoot.
  • Then Advanced Options and UEFI Firmware Settings.
    Advanced reboot options
  • Make sure the internal camera is disabled and boot the windows.
  • Attach the external camera and start using Windows Hello.

4. Edit registry entries

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  • Press Win + R to open the Run box.
  • Type regedit there and hit Enter.
    Regedit run
  • Locate the following key
    HKLM\\System\\CurrentControlSet\\Control\\Power
  • Change the LidNotifyReliable DWORD value from 1 to 0.
  • Reboot and check.

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About the author
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate computer expert

Gabriel E. Hall is an expert troubleshooter who has been working in the information technology industry for years.

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