making bbPress (and WordPress) work better!

Windows can’t find your USB devices? Make sure USBSTOR.INF is still there!

I spent a few days trying to figure this out, and apparently all modern versions of Windows suffer from it, yet it’s barely/poorly documented anywhere:

If your usb devices are no longer recognized by Windows, no matter how many times you try to install or update the drivers, go look in c:\windows\inf\ (make sure you can see hidden and system files) and see if you cannot find:


All you have to do is restore/replace them and bingo, everything will work again, I didn’t even have to reboot.

Windows2k (2000), Windows XP, Vista and even Windows 7 suffer from this problem.

Basically my external mass storage (bulk storage) devices suddenly were not being seen when I plugged them in. Reinstalling the drivers was useless and just ended up saying that windows could not find the drivers needed.

Some program uninstalls those two when you uninstall it – I am not sure what, why or how but it’s yet another Windows mystery to solve.

28 responses

  1. Finally, I found the the solution of my problem. Thank you very much.

    November 22, 2011 at 6:45 pm

  2. bcancienne

    Thank you sir, much appreciated!

    November 29, 2011 at 10:55 pm

  3. milan1101

    Sorry but how do you mean to restore ??? You mean to remove that files ? The problem is that I can only see usbstor.pnf…

    December 7, 2011 at 6:08 am

  4. PigBoy

    I have spent days trying to sort out this USB issue.I have 2 win 2000 machines same install.One machine USB works the other fresh install dosnt work.Searched for missing files on the machine that USB dosnt work and both files are present.USB device shows up and is working.Drive shows up but cant formatt, change drive letter, change volume label or access files.Drive works in other Win 2000 machine fine.Only diffrence one machine Fat32 file setup The other I think I have a corrupt reg setting its a real head ache this fault.But I wont let it beat me.

    December 18, 2011 at 3:02 am

  5. Anonymous


    March 28, 2012 at 7:19 am

  6. Thanks a lot for this! For those who don’t know how to restore these two files, you might find the following link useful:

    May 25, 2012 at 3:53 pm

  7. Anonymous

    Thanks for this but I have a question. Will this fix work for Win7 Home Premium 64 bit USB 3.0?

    September 8, 2012 at 8:12 am

  8. Bruno Alves

    Thanks a lot!

    September 11, 2012 at 8:33 am

  9. Great!

    I was one of poor guys whose Windows 7 got destroyed by the Microsoft .NET Framework 4.5 patch. On the other hand, I was one of the lucky guys who managed to recover from the BSOD after manually removing the patch and applying some other fixes. Still, my Windows 7 was damaged and it did not recognize any USB devices since then.

    Now, based on this posting, I restored the usb*.inf files (and some usb drivers to the folder C:\Windows\System32\Drivers) and now everything works perfectly.

    Thank you!

    July 29, 2013 at 5:25 am

  10. ducu

    Hey , it works . Great man , thanks.

    August 15, 2013 at 8:33 pm

  11. Anonymous

    Thank you very much, it worked! It was driving me crazy and now it is over. You rock.

    October 7, 2013 at 5:39 pm

  12. Anonymous

    Thanks man… i spent days trying to figure out what could be wrong with my pc. You saved me from the stress … thanks

    October 18, 2013 at 11:15 am

  13. JK

    Thank you. Solved my problem after a couple of days scratching my head. This was driving me nuts!

    November 10, 2013 at 5:57 pm

  14. Hiya,

    OK, so, I’ve had similar problems to above…I have about 5 USB pens and an external HDD. Two of the USB pens work, the others don’t or the HDD!

    I have tried the above fix, copying the files over, but nothing! I still only have 2 working, the rest won’t. I’ve been searching for a solution for ages now, but I can’t seem to find it!

    Please help!

    February 8, 2014 at 5:53 am

  15. Kel

    Awesome man! I’ve been digging around for this answer for a long time now.

    February 12, 2014 at 2:07 am

  16. Dawnofclarity

    Absolutely awesome…! I’ve spent months on and off looking for a solution to this, now fixed by copying these two files! – Thanks 🙂

    June 7, 2014 at 3:50 pm

  17. Ramis

    Ohhhhhh Yeah…

    Finally not only a solution for my issues with the usb pendrives but a comprehensive explanation of the problem itself. The expresion “barely/poorly documented anywhere” is the perfect description for this annoying problem.

    Kudos to the original poster.

    July 17, 2014 at 5:48 pm

  18. Pingback: Fix Uaspstor.inf Errors - Windows XP, Vista, 7 & 8

  19. Pingback: How To Fix Usb Inf Errors in Windows

  20. Pingback: Usb Device Driver not found | Napalmpiri

  21. Anonymous

    Like others, I tried the solution for 2 months !
    Too easy – Copy the 2 files and everything works again 🙂
    (On my station Win7_SP1 Ultimate x64 2 files were present and were named: [usbstor.iii] + [usbstor.ppp] ?!
    Thank you very much for this tip !

    November 6, 2014 at 2:27 am

  22. me

    Windows 8.1pro as well !!

    January 29, 2015 at 6:39 am

  23. Anon

    My answer was more obvious. The USB drive was showing in computer management but not in Explorer. I tried restoring USBstor.inf etc to no avail. Then I noticed in computer manager that the drive did not have a letter attached to it. Right click, assign it as drive D: (or Z:) and off you go.

    May 26, 2015 at 5:32 am

    • Anonymous

      This worked like charm. Thanx…

      June 10, 2015 at 1:17 pm

  24. Upset_for_months

    Thank you friend, you made my year!

    December 3, 2015 at 10:32 am

  25. Anonymous

    where to get usbstor.inf

    July 3, 2016 at 3:28 am

  26. Thank you very much. 😀

    April 16, 2017 at 12:41 pm

  27. Milan


    I can´t rewrite usbstor.inf, because, it shows me that access at this file was denied.
    Can someone help me ?

    Thanks Milan

    April 28, 2017 at 10:02 am

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s