Before You Call – IT Checklist
October 1, 2011
Server Maintenance Tip: Exchange 2010 Event Logs
October 1, 2011

To Be or Not to USB?

Printers. Scanners. Thumbdrives. Even mice and keyboards use them to communicate and allow you to interface with your computer. I’m talking about one of the most universally used and recognized computer ports—USB. USB took us from pins to painless by offering a simple, reliable connector for all of our high speed peripheral needs.

USB brought us the world of Plug and Play simplicity and with the ability to effortlessly install devices, the peripherals market exploded. Now you can use anything from webcams to coffee warmers and even charge your phone via USB. But what happens when USB goes awry? What happens when your devices won’t install the way they should? Allow me to suggest a solution to a woe you may be experiencing.

Generic USB devices rely on basic drivers that Microsoft builds directly into Windows. This driver is referred to as USBStor, short for USB Storage. Need to use a mouse, keyboard, external hard drive or various other common USB devices? USBStor has you covered on the driver front.  Unfortunately, USBStor can get corrupted just like any other driver on your computer. Where is the disc to reinstall the driver when that happens, you might ask? That’s the beauty of USBStor, you don’t need one. Read on.

Here’s a common example of when USBStor is corrupted. You plug your device in and are immediately greeted with Windows asking for an administrator username and password to install the device. Every time you plug a device in, the same thing happens. You’re either in a position to continue entering the administrator password or you’re fed up and want to use your devices as effortlessly as they were intended. You can resolve this issue by re-creating the USBStor drivers on your computer. Here’s how! If you’re not big on step-by-step processes, I’ve created a script that will automate the whole process that can be downloaded at the end of the article for your convenience.

1. Open control panel –> Administrator Tools –> Services (shortcut: Windows+R, services.msc)

2. Right click Cryptographic Services and Stop it

3. Navigate to C:\Windows\System32 and delete the catroot2 folder

4. Go back to the Services window, right click Cryptographic Services and Start it

5. Plug in your USB device


Here’s the script to automate the process, as promised: *script link*