How to fix “This device cannot start. (Code 10)” Error

Filed Under: Tech Tips

“This device cannot start. (Code 10)”

– Do you get this error when you plug in a USB device or when you try to access a CD or DVD drive in your computer? Here is a small note on what this error is and how you could go about resolving it.

“This device cannot start. (Code 10)”

This is one of the several device manager error codes in Windows and it can caused by any hardware device connected to the computer running windows OS. The error usually means that the device manager in windows cannot start the faulty hardware.

Restarting the computer to fix the error

In the simplest case, this could be a temporary problem with the device manager and you can fix it by restarting the computer. If that didn’t solve your problem, then you should find whether you had installed any new device recently? If yes, it might be triggering this error. You could try uninstalling the device and restart the computer.

Updating the drivers for the device or re-installing the device or its drivers

You could try fixing the issue by updating the drivers for the device that might be triggering this error. You can do it via the device manager. Search for “Device Manager” in “Start” => “Search programs and files“. Open the device manager.Find the device under the appropriate group, right click and choose “Scan for hardware changes”. You can also run “Update Driver Software…” and follow the wizard to update the drivers for the device.

You could also try uninstalling the device or even re-installing the drivers for the device, to fix the error. Do check whether the issue is caused by any software and try to apply the registry fix explained below, before you uninstall the device.

Uninstalling a device can also be done through the device manager. Search for “Device Manager” in “Start” => “Search programs and files”. Open the device manager.Find the device under the appropriate category. For example, if the error is caused by an USB device, you will have to uninstall all devices under the “Universal Serial Bus controllers hardware” category in Device Manager as part of the driver re-installation process. This includes any USB Mass Storage Device, USB Host Controller, and USB Root Hub.

Registry fix for “This device cannot start. (Code 10)” Error in the case of CD or DVD drive

It could also be that you had installed a new software for the device, that has triggered this error. For example, if you see this error occurring with a CD or DVD drive, it could be that you had installed a new third-party CD/DVD-burning software like the “Nero” or “Roxio” which triggers this error. Here is how you can do the registry fix to solve this problem.

  • 1. First, temporarily remove the new software through “Control Panel” => “Programs and Features“.
  • 2. Next, Click Start, type “regedit” and press ENTER. Then navigate to this key in the registry.
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}
  • Back up this key by right clicking the “{4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}” registry entry and choosing “Export” to save it to your computer, with a name. If something goes wrong, you could restore this key by double clicking the file.
  • 3. After taking a back up of the registry key, you can go ahead and check if “Upperfilters” and “Lowerfilters” value are present for this key – “{4D36E965-E325-11CE-BFC1-08002BE10318}”. Highlight this key and check the right pane for the presence of these filers. If you find them, right click on those values and select “Delete” to remove them. Then, restart the computer.
  • 4. Finally, reinstall the device in the device manager. To do so, click “Start”, type “devmgmt.msc” and press Enter. Expand “DVD/CD-ROM drives”, right-click the DVDRW drive that throws the error and click “Uninstall”. Then restart the computer.

Follow all the above steps in the exact order and you should be able to fix the error. An approach similar to the registry fix for the CD or DVD drive explained above, can also be adopted for other devices.

If you get a “device not recognized” error, check out this fix for USB device not recognized error.

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