I have two Dell computers running Windows 10 with COM ports on the motherboard (not a USB to serial converter). The COM ports worked on both until, on separate days, after a reboot, they both showed up in Device Manager like this:
If you open the entries in Device Manager, the Device Status is:
Windows cannot start this hardware device because its configuration information (in the registry) is incomplete or damaged. (Code 19)
I don't believe this is a hardware failure because those two COM ports go to entirely different pieces of hardware (one to an
Intel(R) 100 Series/C230 Series Chipset Family LPC Controller - A146 and another to the Active Management chip). The odds of both pieces of hardware failing at the same time on two different machines are very low.
Uninstall and Re-Install
If I uninstall and re-install the driver, Windows just reports that the most-up-to-date driver is already installed. The event log shows the Device Manager events as follows:
The event names corresponding to those entries (from top to bottom) are:
Device installed (msports.inf) Device service added (Serenum) Device service added (Serial) Device not migrated <---- Selected entry Device install requested Device deleted Device installed (msports.inf) Device service added (Serenum) Device service added (Serial) Device started (Serial) Device install requested Device configured (msports.inf) Device migrated
The entries dated for November must have been the initial install (someone else did this).
Registry on Non-working Machine
In the registry,
Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\Serial has the following entries:
Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\Serial has the same entries.
Registry on Working Machine
On another Dell machine with similar hardware, also running Windows 10, on which the COM ports still work, the registry entires for
Sequence of Events
- 17:00 Yesterday: I left work and left my computer on
- 17:48:44 Yesterday: my IT group automatically started an install of an update to 7-Zip using EmpirumAgent.
- 17:48:44 Yesterday:
RestartManagerreported that it could not restart Windows Explorer --
Application 'C:\Windows\explorer.exe' (pid 8824) cannot be restarted - Application SID does not match Conductor SID... I'm guessing the
explorer.exerestart is required because 7-Zip installs context menu extensions for Windows Explorer.
- 17:49:21 Yesterday: The 7-Zip installer finishes.
- 06:41:23 Today: I came into work this morning, noticed that I no longer had a task bar, and initiated a restart with
shutdown -rin a Command Prompt window I happened to have open.
- 06:42:14 Today:
User Profile Servicereports that "Windows detected your registry file is still in use by other applications or services. The file will be unloaded now..." It lists several keys, but they're all under the path
REGISTRY\USERand none have anything to do with
ControlSetkeys mentioned above.
- When the computer started up again, the COM ports had the error listed above.