USB Ports losing Connection (Vista)

  Tinkey Winkey 10:19 08 Oct 09

I have an old Dell D610 Laptop running Vista Home Premium SP1. The USB ports keep losing connection, then reconnecting intermittently. This process repeats the whole time. There is no distinctive pattern to the losing and reconnecting. They can work fine for an hour and then go, and come back within a minute or so. Another time they might go almost as soon as I've switched the laptop on.

The laptop is plugged in at the mains the whole time with a new power supply so I don't think it's a question of not getting enough power. I have disabled all power saving options.

I have a USB mouse and external portable HDD attached via USB ports directly connected to the laptop (not in a usb hub).I haven't been able to find a solution by googling.

My main concern is that I am unable to make a 30GB backup to the external HDD because of this.
Both the mouse and HDD stay connected when attached to another PC, so the devices are working fine.

I was wondering if anyone else had experienced this? Do you think this is indicating a motherboard failure in the near future?

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 10:39 08 Oct 09

old Dell

Its possible the USB ports are loose (though constant plugging / unplugging) on the motherboard and need re-soldering (not an easy job to strip a laptop to do this).

Try a powered external hub into one of the ports and "wedge" the connection to keep it steady then try your backup.

A PCMCIA USB card could be a method of solving your problem click here

  Tinkey Winkey 10:51 08 Oct 09

Thankyou Fruit Bat, I will try both.

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