Windows Enterprise Desktop

Feb 28 2018   12:52PM GMT

Fixing Missing Mouse or Keyboard

Ed Tittel Ed Tittel Profile: Ed Tittel

Device drivers
Windows 10

In the wake of the recently-released KB4074588, lots of PCs with this update installed have resbooted to “lost” USB peripherals. In particular, many users have reported neither mouse nor keyboard present. Because a mouse and a keyboard are usually necessary to do anything on a Windows PC, this poses something of a conundrum. Consequently, I herewith provide what I hope are helpful tips for fixing missing mouse or keyboard. Better to skip such problems entirely, but if you get stuck, try these!

Fixing Missing Mouse or Keyboard

As the top (and current) results from this TenForums search show, this situation is far from uncommon.

Tip 1: Fixing Missing Mouse or Keyboard via Device Substitution

Try a different mouse and keyboard. Seriously. MS explains this gotcha as a driver omission. Here’s chapter and verse

After installing this update, some USB devices and onboard devices, such as a built-in laptop camera, keyboard or mouse, may stop working.  This may occur when the windows update servicing stack incorrectly skips installing the newer version of some critical drivers in the cumulative update and uninstalls the currently active drivers during maintenance.

Presumably, the hopes driving this maneuver are two-fold. First, MS hopes that Windows will recognize the keyboard. Second, MS hope that it will successfully download the correct driver. If you find yourself with a working keyboard and mouse, you can skip a heading and jump to “DISM to uninstall KB4074588 at the command line.”

Tip 2: Fixing Missing Mouse or Keyboard via OS Substitution

The problem is that the update removed the old (working) drivers and didn’t supply any new ones. If the OS lacks drivers, another way to fix the issue is to try a different OS to make repairs. That’s why MS recommends booting into the Windows Recovery Environment (WinRE), where mouse and keyboard drivers should be both available and working. There are lots of different ways to access WinRE, so I’ll share two of them (for a more exhaustive treatment try this excellent TenForums Tutorial)

  1. If your system fails to boot 2 times in a row, AND your system has a built-in recovery partition (installed by default for most Windows 10 systems), it will automatically boot into that partition on the 3rd try.
  2. If that doesn’t work out, you can boot to the Windows 10 installer and access the “Repair your computer” functions to make your way into WinRE.

Either way, you want to make your way to the command line so you can work on the affected OS. That’s covered in the next section.

DISM to Uninstall KB4074588 at the Command Line

If you’re using a substitute mouse or keyboard, you’ll need to get into an administrative command prompt. If you’re running WinRE,  its command prompt is already privileged. Once there, you’ll want to enter one of the following commands, depending on whether your Win10 installation is 32- or 64-bit:

32-bit: dism /online /remove-package /packagename:Package_for_RollupFix~31bf3856ad364e35~x86~~16299.248.1.17

64-bit: dism /online /remove-package /packagename:Package_for_RollupFix~31bf3856ad364e35~amd64~~16299.248.1.17

Once that command completes, you’ll have removed the trouble-causing update. You must then reboot Windows 10 to restore your computer to normal operation (with access to the missing mouse and/or keyboard restored).

In general, this approach works any time mouse or keyboard goes missing. The details of which package you need to remove may change. Or, you could try to find and install the missing drivers on your own. It’s up to you!

2  Comments on this Post

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  • jsjust4fun
    How can I do any of this with non working keyboard or mouse. I can't boot to something else I can't type any commands, I can't access anything. I've plugged in a wired mouse, another wireless keyboard & mouse and even an old system keyboard & mouse? None of them will load no matter how many restarts. I can't install a new driver or software from the usb I've downloaded from another computer because I have no way of accessing it with no mouse or keyboard? The USB's are all working as they recognize anything you plug in but you can't access any of them without a keyboard or mouse...  I'm not a computer genius, I will say that much.
    20 pointsBadges:
  • Ed Tittel
    When you're really, really stuck you have two basic choices: 1. perform a clean install of Windows (if you can get that to work, perhaps that's impossible), or 2. take your PC to a shop to let the professionals try to restore it to working condition. I found myself choosing #2 recently when, as I learned later, a failed boot drive (mSATA SSD) rendered my system basically inoperable. Sorry for your trouble. --Ed--
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