Fix “USB Freezes Computer” issue in Windows 10

Computers hanging after plugging-in the USB drive is very common issue in Windows. There might be two most common reasons behind this – corrupt USB disks (maybe with some hardware errors) and corrupt USB port drivers. Improper ejection of USB drives also causes issues sometimes. So, if you plug-out a USB drive while in use, it may get corrupt. And corrupt USB sometimes hangs or freezes computer causing troubles to users.

In some cases there is issue of USB port drivers. But thanks to Windows Updates, you will get most of the device drivers automatically without any intervention. However, if you think USB drivers are corrupt, you can try updating drivers in Device Manager.

SEE ALSO: How to Repair Corrupt Memory Card or USB Drive?

Fix “My Computer Freezes when I Plug in a USB in USB Port” Issue in Windows 10

Keeping in mind the issues with USB Drives and Port Drivers, it can’t be denied that sometimes, ports are main cause of error. With time, ports get corroded, resulting in improper connection of USB drive with computer causing PC freezing issues after plugging in USB devices. It’s a better idea to keep the ports clean to avoid connectivity issues.

To ensure that you have no issue with Pendrive, try connecting it to another PC, it may give a better idea about where is actual problem is. If nothing works and you don’t have another PC to try your USB device, you may try following steps to resolve the PC freezing problem caused by inserting USB drives. This is pretty useful when you need to troubleshoot and fix problems caused by leftover drivers.

WARNING: Before proceeding, we recommend that you create a restore point in your system. It will help you to restore your system to working state in case of any issues later.

Step 1: Show Corrupt Devices via Registry

We will first enable display of hidden but corrupt devices via Registry Editor. This will show USB device which hangs your PC. To open Registry Editor, go to RUN, type regedit and press ENTER.

Go To Run Type Regedit And Press Enter Or Click Ok
Run > Type regedit > Press Enter

You may see UAC Prompt, click Yes to continue. Next, in Registry Editor, go to this path:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Environment

Right-click in right pane and create a new key by selecting New > DWORD (32-bit) Value.

In Registry Editor Create Dword In Session Manager to display USB devices that freezes your computer
In Registry Editor select New > DWORD

Name new DWORD as “DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES“. This DWORD will allow us to view hidden and non-present USB devices in Device Manager that are freezing your Computer when plugged-in.

Name Dword To Show Hidden Devices causing your computer to freeze when plugged in
Name DWORD as “DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES”

Right-click on newly created DWORD and select Modify… to change its value which is set to 0 (Zero) by default. You can also double-click on it to modify it’s value and set the Value data to 1 and click on OK to continue.

Set The Dword Value To 1 To Show Non Present Devices
Set the DWORD Value to 1

Registry part is done and you can close Registry editor. It’s time to finish remaining work in Device Manager.


SEE ALSO: How to Format Corrupt SD Card or USB Drive using Chromebook Recovery Utility?


Step 2: Display Non-Present Devices in Device Manager

Now, we will uninstall non-present, hidden or corrupt devices from Device Manger so that corrupt USB doesn’t freeze your computer. Go to RUN, type devmgmt.msc and press ENTER to open Device Manager.

Go To Run And Type Devmgmt Msc To Open Device Manager
Run > Type devmgmt.msc > Press Enter

In Device Manager, click on View in menu and select Show hidden devices. It will make all the hidden devices (the devices that were installed in your PC but now they are not connected) visible. When you plug-in one of these USB devices, it hangs your computer.

Show Hidden Devices In Device Manager
Show Hidden Devices in Device Manager

SEE ALSO: How to Hide all Drives in your Computer?


Step 3: Uninstall USB Devices Freezing Your Computer When Plugged-in

It’s time to Uninstall those hidden USB devices. How to find a hidden device? Look for devices with blurred icons. There are two main places to look for hidden devices – Disk drives and Universal Serial Bus controllers.

Let’s start with Disk drives. Select a hidden USB device that is no more connected to your PC, right-click it and select Uninstall device.

Uninstall Usb Devices That Freezes Your Computer When Plugged In
Uninstall non-present USB Devices

Click on Uninstall to continue uninstallation of selected Device.

Uninstall Corrupt Usb That Freezes Your Computer
Click Uninstall

Similarly, uninstall all other hidden USB devices in Universal Serial Bus Controllers as well. Select a device, right-click and click on Uninstall Device. And then click on Uninstall again to continue.


Step 4: Restart your Computer

After successfully uninstalling all hidden USB drives, restart your computer. Sometimes, you may require to restart your PC at least TWICE to clear leftover device drivers from your PC. After restart, the corrupt USB drivers hanging your PC will be removed.

Restart Your Computer
Restart Your Computer

SEE ALSO: How to Make Bootable USB using Command Prompt?


Fix “USB Drive Freezes Computer When Plugged-in” Issue

After uninstalling all hidden USB devices, restart your PC and connect your USB drive again. This time your USB drive should not hang your PC. If USB still hangs or freezes your PC, there might be hardware problem either in your USB drive or your computer ports. Please note that this method doesn’t fix hardware issues. However, this tutorial will definitely help you with software related issue.

Hope you liked this tutorial. In case are still facing issues with your USB drives, you can write down your queries in comment section down below. You can also subscribe to our newsletter to get latest updates directly into your inbox.

Editorial Staff

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2 Comments

  1. I have a desktop Windows 10 PC with an ASUS motherboard. I recently began having the problem of my PC crashing every time I insert a flash drive into any USB ports. I know it is not bad flash (I’ve tried several) or bad USB ports (no way – not all six). Also, the flash drives work in other PC’s.

    I tried your solution to remove hidden, corrupt USB devices but this did not make a difference.
    I suspect my problem may be due to bad drivers. Because my USB drivers were automatically updated by Windows on June 22, 2021. I would like to try rolling back the drivers but don’t know how to do this as ‘Rollback’ option under ‘Properties’ is greyed out and not usable.

    Very frustrating problem. I can use the flash drive in a USB port if I boot Windows in SAFE MODE with DOS prompt. So this proves that it is not a hardware problem.

    Thanks

    1. Hi NICK, sorry to hear that. That definitely looks like a driver or any programs problem. So, have you tried uninstalling any recently installed software? Besides that go to Device Manager, expand System Devices and look for “PCI to USB Controller”. If it is present there, try to update it’s driver. Also, in Device Manager, expand “Universal Serial Bus controllers” and uninstall each device. Don’t worry they will automatically install when you plug them in. Make sure to restart your PC TWICE after that.
      If it still doesn’t solve your problem, try System Restore or Reset your PC using Recovery.

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