I have an elderly laptop running Windows 10 with regular updates. About a month ago, several plug and play devices suddenly stopped working. Examples of the affected devices are a Huawei Y330-U01 Android phone (about 7 years old), and a camera that is about five years old.

My USB memory sticks still work, as does my Samsung printer (about five years old). An elderly USB keyboard shows up in Device Manager as a USB composite device, and is correctly converted.

The non-working devices don't show up at all in Windows Device Manager. Device Manager doesn't register that anything was plugged into the computer. The phone charges via USB when connected to the computer, that's all.

I wondered if it was the problem described here, but the solution suggested by Microsoft doesn't seem to apply to me. They suggest that you can enable legacy devices manually via Device Manager, but when I follow the instructions, there is simply no option to enable legacy devices on the Port Settings of any COM port. I also can't see LPT1 in Device Manager.

I tried Device Manager | Action |Add Legacy Hardware, but it didn't seem to help either. I installed some drivers, but my devices are still not recognised.

I was on Windows v2004 with full updates until today, when I installed 20H2 (19042.685). There is no change. I had a look for drivers for the phone online, but don't want to download from unknown sites. There are no software downloads available on the Huawei website for this phone. Can anyone suggest how to get these devices working again?

EDIT: I have now solved issues with two devices by downloading software from the manufacturers' website. It was not labelled driver downloads - in both cases, I installed a fancy app with functionality that I don't need. Tested that my devices were recognised, then uninstalled the fancy apps. The drivers remained.

1 Answer 1


The devices you wish to use are or appear to be older than Windows 10 itself. Possibly the devices are just too old - that has happened to me. You may need to upgrade the needed devices.

Also, try updating BIOS on your machine to see if that helps Device Manager see your older devices.

Be careful as you said your laptop was elderly, so check the laptop Support Site carefully to ensure an applicable BIOS update.

From an experience point of view, I had a Nokia USB Internet stick that worked in Windows 7, Windows 8, 8.1 and very earliest Windows 10 and then had to be replaced with a compatible HUAWEI stick.

All this stuff ages at some point and needs to be renewed.

  • I found a camera editor on the Sony website, which is compatible with the camera and installed it, so that problem is now fixed. I know the phone is old and cheap, but still, I feel that Microsoft shouldn't just arbitrarily force me to buy a new phone. It's very wasteful for one thing. I'll try a BIOS upgrade, but I don't know what the principle is there, or why it would work. As far as I know, the BIOS hasn't been upgraded since 2016. Thank you for the reply. Commented Dec 13, 2020 at 19:03
  • Microsoft is not forcing you to upgrade. Time does that .
    – John
    Commented Dec 13, 2020 at 19:09
  • I disagree. Backwards compatibility is important. A working device should not have to be replaced. If there is a security issue, it should be allowed as a single exception. Commented Dec 13, 2020 at 19:47
  • Stuff modernizes and old stuff goes obsolete. That is the way stuff works now (Cars, computers, appliances, you name it)
    – John
    Commented Dec 13, 2020 at 19:50
  • I don't like mindless consumerism and waste. But that is an argument for another website. See above, I got my most important two devices working. Thank you for your reply. Commented Dec 13, 2020 at 19:52

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