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How to Fix Code 10 Errors (2020)

A code 10 error occurs when the following message is displayed “the device cannot start.”

The reason for a code 10 error to appear is because the device manager cannot start the hardware device drivers, or it may arise due to an outdated version of the existing driver.

In some cases, the message displayed will also be different if there is a value for fail reason string updated in the device manager.

In such cases, the value string will be displayed as the error message, which is mostly defined by the manufacturer.

In cases where there is no fail reason string value updated into the device manager, the default full error message will be displayed as  “This device cannot start. Try upgrading the device drivers for this device”.

Even though the message sounds dreadful, it can be solved through simple troubleshooting by following the various steps that we are going to list in this article, with difficulty level progressing higher into each step.

For a few people, it may work at the initial stages of troubleshooting itself, but in very rare cases, you might have to visit a professional technician as well to solve this issue.

How to Fix Code 10 Errors

Try restarting your system

In most of the cases, the code 10 error is caused due to a temporary problem while starting the device manager.  This can be mostly rectified if you try restarting or rebooting your system after the error message is displayed. 

Even after restarting your system, if the error message still shows up, then there might be some inherent problem with the device manager setup; this situation, you can try proceeding for the next step. 

Undo Changes in device manager

The second most probable reason why the error shows up is that you might have installed a new device or made some changes in the device manager, and this might be the probable cause of the error message. 

In this case, you have three options to resolve the problem, which are as follows:

  1. 1
    In the event of installing a new device, try uninstalling and re-configuring them. Go to the device manager window and then on the device that needs to roll back the update, right click on it.
  2. 2
    Select the “Properties” option. A small window will pop up. Now you need to select the option “Roll back driver” to go get the past version back. If you are unable to select it then you need to proceed to the next method.
  3. 3
    You can also use the system restore feature available in the start menu or control panel to go back to a state before the problem occurred. Simply click on the date to which you want to roll back to.

Also, try uninstalling and reinstalling all the drivers for the particular device if none of the above three methods provides a solution for the code 10 error.  

For example, if a USB device causes the code 10 error then uninstall all the USB devices under the universal serial bus controller hardware and later try reinstalling them. 

The most important point to note here is the fact that you need to re-install the driver again very carefully and be cautious not to cause the code 10 error again. 

Try Updating the device drivers

Contrary to the above point, sometimes it is also possible that if you install the latest version of the device driver, the code 10 error may be resolved. This is because the previous drivers, even though were functional, might have caused some problem when the device boots up. 

You can uninstall the drivers by using two options. The first one is the manual update mode. The most important thing to note here is that you should always check with the manufacturer website for the latest device drivers, which is suitable for your computer and install them appropriately. 

The second method is an automatic update. For this method, you can try softwares that  are available on the web. 

These softwares can easily figure out which drivers need an update within a few minutes, and you just need to install those updates by following the steps that are displayed in front of you. 

Try Getting the latest update of Windows

In a few cases, the code 10 error might be solved by getting the latest update of Windows OS. Microsoft sometimes releases the update of windows in small patches. Therefore there is a very good possibility that these update patches might have a fix for the code 10 error. 

So, if you install such an update patch, you might see the code 10 error getting resolved within a few minutes of the update. To do a Windows Update, click on the start menu and then search for the “Updates & Security” option. Now click on the “Check Update” option, which is available on the screen. 

Windows will start searching for any updates, and if at all an update is present, then the update will start getting downloaded automatically. 

Rectifying the windows registry

A mismatch in the upper filters and lower filters value in the Windows registry is one of the common reasons for most of the device manager error codes. 

Even though this problem is not the probable cause for the code 10 error most of the time, in an exceptionally few rare cases, fixing the value of upper filters and lower filters in the windows registry might provide a solution to the code 10 error. 

To delete the upper filter and lower filter values in the windows registry you need to do the following simple steps.

  1. 1
    Press on the Window key with R key to open the Run window and then in the command window type “regedit”and press OK.
  2. 2
    Locate the folder named HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE and click on the plus icon to expand and see all the folders inside it.
  3. 3
    Keep expanding the folders until you see the registry key named Class.
  4. 4
    Now once again, click the down arrow button near the class folder to expand all the registries inside it.
  5. 5
    Now comes the most challenging part, which is to find the GUIDs of the different device managers. Please search on the net for the GUIDs.
  6. 6
    Once you have located the required GUID of that particular device manager, click on it to view the upper filter and lower filter registry.
  7. 7
    Then click on the lower filter registry. Now right-click to delete the value and similarly repeat the same steps for the upper filter after locating that particular GUID.

Rolling Back to the previous version of Windows OS

There is a slight possibility that the latest version of Windows OS after updating might contain a problem; therefore when you uninstall the latest version and install the previous version of the windows OS, there is a possibility that the code 10 error will get resolved.

This method does not guarantee 100% success but is undoubtedly worth the shot before going for the upcoming fixes. 

Disabling USB Suspend Settings

If your USB port is causing the code 10 error, then you can try out this method. To disable the USB suspend settings, you need to do the following steps.

  1. 1
    Now, to launch the start menu press the WIN key and search for “Control Panel.” Further, in the search bar search for power options and open it.
  2. 2
    Once this window is opened and select “Change plan settings” and go to “Change advanced power settings.” You will be displayed with a list of various options
  3. 3
    Click on the plus icon near to the USB settings and then select USB selective suspend settings. Click on disable. Now click on OK to apply the changes and finally restart your computer to see if the code 10 error is resolved.

Using the Intel Driver Update Utility

Intel provides a tool called Driver Update Utility, which can be used to fix the device manager and driver related issues automatically. To do this, you need to complete the following steps.

  1. 1
    Download the driver Update utility software from the website of Intel.
  2. 2
    After successfully installing the software, a new window will pop-up.
  3. 3
    In the next window, click on the “Start scan” option. The scan will be performed by the software, and a list of updates, if any, will be shown on the next screen.
  4. 4
    To install these updates, you need to download and save them to your system.
  5. 5
    Finally, click on Install to install all the recommended updates shown to each driver by the software.
  6. 6
    After the installation is successful, restart the computer to see if this method has made any changes. If not, then proceed to the next method.

Using a Powered USB

If you have found out that the USB drivers are causing the code 10 error, then you can purchase a powered USB and use it in place of the existing USB drivers. Search for the best-powered USB hubs that are available at Amazon and purchase them. 

Replacement of Hardware

If all the above steps did not result in a positive response, then you can try using this fix. It can turn out that sometimes even the hardware problem might be a cause for the code 10 error, and therefore the above steps will not work out no matter how perfectly you execute them.

In this, you can say that it has to be the particular hardware that needs to be replaced to make your device start working again.  In case of hardware replacement, always consult a technician or an expert and do not try to attempt any replacement on your own as it might damage the device and also nullify any warranty that you have.

Attempt for an Older Version of Driver

The most recent driver variant is ideally the best form. Yet, there is space for special cases. Clients have seen that the gadget driver may have problems and is equipped for tossing errors of Code 10.

We would suggest taking a stab at utilizing a more established driver form to check whether the system boots up with no mistake. According to your PC image, scout for the driver on the web, download and introduce it. When done, restart your PC to check whether it stacks up flawlessly.

Try a clean install of Windows

If you are doubtful about replacing the hardware, then you can try using the repair install of Windows OS, or you can also try a fresh install of the OS. 

For performing a repair install of OS, you have to go to the settings menu and then type advanced startup options. You will be given 6 different choices like command prompt, system restore,  startup repair, system image recovery, and startup settings. 

We would say you can place your best bet on startup repair as it might solve any problems which are related to booting up the OS.

This device cannot start (code 10) error all devices [Fixed 2020 New] 5 EASY WAYS


We have listed out various possible methods by which you can resolve the code 10 error. We are quite sure that one of the above methods will resolve your problem.

The chances of calling a technician will be very low if the methods which we have listed are appropriately followed. Do follow us and visit our website regularly for much more interesting content.


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About the Author

Piyush Kashyap is a Ph.D student at Sant Longowal Institute of Engineering and Technology, Sangrur. He is a budding editor/ writer and has been working as a part-time reviewer for online content. He loves to read tech-based articles and has a knack for reviewing such articles He likes to stay updated about the latest trends in technology. He has also been working as a reviewer for many scientific journals. He also writes articles based on science. Know More About Piyush

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