How to Fix Slow USB 3.0 Problems

Slow USB 3.0 Transfer Rate in Windows 8.1

Quite a big number of users have been experiencing problems with their USB 3.0 port in Windows 8.1 and transfer rate accordingly. The majority of them are reporting that the port is very sluggish or not responding at all. Read listed below to discover more about this.

I’ve been following this Windows 8.1 problem carefully and can now confirm that it is impacting a large number of users. Mainly, what Windows 8.1 users seem to be complaining about is sluggish response of USB 3.0 or other problems, such as a connected mouse, external hard drive or other device not being acknowledged.

One user is reporting a problem with a Dell laptop:

I have Dell Inspiron N5110, I updated to windows 8.1 and now my USB port on the right side has actually quit working. I can not find the chipset drivers for 8.1 64 bit. Any good idea?

While another Lenovo user is complaining about this:

I have a T430s computer system design 2352CTO, running Windows 8.1, 64-bit version. Prior to update from Windows 8.0 all drivers were updated. The USB 3 ports worked correctly, in particular running an external 1gb disk drive. After upgrade to 8.1, the USB 3 ports still work, however just for about 30 seconds then the hard drive shuts down. The power light is still lit on the hard disk, however it not displays in windows explorer.

In device manager, I went to Universal Serial Bus Controllers -> USB Root Hub -> Properties->(under General it states “This device is working properly)-> Power Management-> Unchecked the box for “Allow the computer to switch off this device to conserve power”. Unfortunately this does not appear to stop issue. Any concepts?

Those influenced by USB 3.0 woes have among the following OEM’s– Buffalo, datAshur, Fantom Drive, Fujitsu, Hitachi, ADATA Nobility, Kingston DataTraveler, LaCie 2TB USB Drive, RaidSonic, Sans Digital, Vantect, Fantec, Digitus, Mediasonic, Samsung 1T, Apricorn, iStorage, DiskGenie, Verbatim, Western Digital.

Potential repairs for slow USB 3.0 transfer rate in Windows 8.1

Here are a few options that you might attempt to make it work. The first standard option you could attempt is by going into device manager, discover the USB root hubs, and switch off the save power alternative. If not, then follow these actions:

  • To see the idle duration that some USB devices use to conserve power
  • Type “power alternatives” in Search Charm
  • Change Plan Settings of the currently chosen power strategy
  • Click Change advanced power levels
  • Expand Hard disk and then Turn off hard disk after

The Setting value shows the system disk idle period. In this image the idle duration is set to 20 minutes (default). For this system, if no file transfers take place within 20 minutes, the drive gets in a suspend state and draws less power from the system. For a lot of USB storage devices and USB host controllers, the power-saving system works without issues.

However, a pre-existing problem in the USB drive or USB host controller might trigger these problems after the specified idle period ends. The device periodically disconnects and may reconnect leading to bad user experience. If you try to access files kept on the drive, Windows Explorer becomes unresponsive for 1-2 minutes.

If you see any of those problems, first check whether the firmware on the USB host controller or the USB storage device is out of date. If so, get the current firmware from the system or device producer. A firmware upgrade may solve the problem. Otherwise, identify whether the issue occurs during the system disk idle amount of time (shown in Power Options). If it does, disable suspend on idle for this device as per the instructions given in the next section. Note, you can set the value to “Never” in the Power Options just an experiment to see if that repairs the problem, but the right long term option is to set the windows registry setting as explained below. This registry level does not impact the other USB storage devices and results in saving power.

How to disable suspend on idle

Get the hardware ID of the USB storage device

  • See to it the device is plugged in.
  • Search for “device manager” in the Search beauty, and open Device Manager.
  • In Device Manager, broaden the Disk Drives and find the device:
  • Select the View > Devices by connection from the menu:
  • Right-click the USB Mass Storage Device node under which the device appears, and select Properties.
  • On the Details tab, choose Hardware Ids from the drop-down list.
  • Take down the 4 digits occurring after “VID _” and “PID _” and close Device Manager. In this example, VID is 0004 and PID is 0001.

Change the device level in the registry

  • Run Registry Editor (regedit.exe) as administrator by searching for “regedit” in the Search charm. Right-click the regedit icon, and select Run as administrator.
  • In Registry Editor, browse to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\usbstor
  • Right-click usbstor and create a secret. The name must be VID and PID strings acquired formerly. Leading 0’s are significant. For the device in
  • this example the new key name is “00040001”.
  • Right-click the new key and produce a DWORD entry called DeviceHackFlags. Set the value to 400 hexadecimal.
  • Disconnect and reconnect the device.

The solution has been posted by the Microsoft Windows USB Core Team Blog (didn’t even know there existed such a team). Anyway, let us know if this handled to resolve your USB 3.0 problems in Windows 8.1.


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