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Troubleshooting USB Drive Connection and Performance Issues


Drives connected via USB are not being detected properly, have poor performance, or are causing errors.


Please try the following troubleshooting procedures to resolve the problem:

  • Try using a different USB cable. If using a USB 2.0 drive, make sure you're using a USB 2.0 cable.

  • If you're using a very long USB cable, try a shorter one. Using long cables or extension cables are more likely to introduce errors.

  • Plug the USB drive into a different port. In particular, try using a motherboard USB port (those located on the back of the computer), rather than a port that is part of a USB hub, the case or enclosure, etc.

  • If the USB drive is powered by the USB port, verify that the port is capable of providing the amount of power required by the drive. Most newer USB motherboard ports and powered hubs will properly power USB drives. Older boards, hubs, or powered hubs may not.

  • Disconnect any USB media card readers. This includes iPods, cameras, printers, etc. These types of devices can sometimes cause problems with standard USB drives, especially if the media drives contain no media.

  • Boot with the drive disconnected and connect it just before using it. This can sometimes prevent the BIOS from interfering with accessing the drive.

  • If you're having a USB drive problem with Image for DOS or BootIt BM, the following additional troubleshooting procedures may help:

    • Drives connected to USB 3 ports may only be available via the BIOS or BIOS (Direct) options on the Select Drive Interface screen(s) or Bus option. Drives connected to USB ports in USB 3 (xHCI) mode will be unavailable via the USB bus option. Note that, depending on the system, there may be a BIOS option to allow the ports to delay or prevent xHCI mode if support is not detected, which may allow them to function using the USB bus option.

    • Boot with the drive connected and use the BIOS option (rather than the USB option) on applicable Select Drive Interface screen(s) or Bus option. Please note that this will not work in all cases. Also, the BIOS USB interface may be very slow (due to the use of USB 1.x speeds) or may not be reliable (in this case, you will see either validation errors or program freezes during the imaging/restore operation).

    • Use the USB option (rather than the BIOS option) on applicable Select Drive Interface screen(s) or Bus option. This allows the drive to be accessed directly and may provide better stability and performance than using the BIOS.

    • Check the BIOS for a Legacy USB option. Depending on the BIOS, the name of this option will vary. Some common names include: Legacy USB Support, USB Keyboard/Mouse Support, USB Device Legacy Support, USB BIOS Support. If the BIOS provides a separate Legacy USB option specifically for drives, try that option first.

      The USB drive may be better supported with this option disabled. If it's already disabled, try enabling it. Note that disabling this option can affect USB keyboard and mouse support for operating systems that don't provide direct USB support (e.g. DOS).

    • When creating your boot media with MakeDisk, try enabling one or more of the following options:

      Image for Dos: USB 1.1 (UHCI), Correct USB Hang (1), Correct USB Hang (2)
      More information on these options can be found in the Image for DOS manual.

      BootIt BM: USB Controller Fix, USB Device Fix
      More information on these options can be found in the BootIt BM manual.

    • Try using Image for Linux. USB BIOS support is not required for Image for Linux. Each purchase of Image for DOS or Image for Windows includes Image for Linux.

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