- 1. Mac Files Tips
- 2. Mac Software
- 3. Mac Storage Tips
- 4. Mac Troubleshooting
- 5. Mac OS
by Jenefey AaronUpdated on 2020-01-10 / Update for OS X
As flawless as a Mac can be, it is not completely immune to issues and sometimes the USB ports on the Mac can stop working inexplicably. You know you didn't do anything to cause the problem, but all of a sudden all your USB ports not working on Mac. This issue can be frustrating. But before you think that the problem is the Mac, consider that sometimes USB devices can fail.
1. Check the Connection
The USB Overdrive is a device driver for Mac OS X that handles any USB mouse / trackball / joystick / gamepad / media keyboard and any Bluetooth mouse from any manufacturer and lets you configure them either globally or on a per-application, per-device basis.
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Like we mentioned above, it is likely that the Mac is not the problem at all but the USB itself is failing to connect to the Mac. To check if this is a connection issue and that the USB you are using is damaged or not, try connecting a different USB device to the Mac to see if it's recognized. If the program recognizes a different USB device, the problem is not the Mac; you just need to change the USB device you are using.
You may also want to check the USB ports on the Mac to make sure there isn't any debris or dust lodged in it. If there are, use a soft cloth to clean out the dust or a toothpick to remove any debris.
2. Restart the Mac
This problem can also be caused by a software issue. In this case, you may want to restart the Mac to eliminate any software issues that could be causing problems. Follow these simple steps to restart the Mac;
- Step 1: Click on the menu button located at the top left corner of the screen
- Step 2: Click 'Restart'
- Step 3: Confirm that you want to restart the Mac by clicking on the 'Restart' button in the menu that appears.
3. Inspect the Port and Cable
Just to make sure that it is not a hardware problem, you may want to check that the USB port on the Mac is working fine. Dust and debris can be easily removed like we mentioned in the first solution above, and you can also try using different USB devices to see if they are the problem.
4. Update SMC
If you are certain the problem is not the USB device or the cable, the easiest way to fix the USB not working on Mac problem is to reset SMC. The process is slightly different for different Mac models. Here's how to do it for a MacBook, MacBook Pro and a MacBook Air;
- Step 1: Shut down the Mac and then connect it to the power cable.
- Step 2: Hold down the Shift, Control, Option and Power buttons at the same time for a few seconds. When the power adapter blinks or changes color the SMC reset will be complete.
- Step 3: Release the keys and then turn on the Mac.
5. Reset the PRAM/NVRAM
Sometimes resetting the PRAM or NVRAM can fix the USB ports not working on Mac issue simply because the NVRAM holds the data about the keyboards, trackpad, mouse and USB components. Follow these simple steps to reset the NVRAM;
- Step 1: Restart the Mac and then immediately hold down the Command + Option + P+ R keys together until you hear a sound and the screen flashes.
- Step 2: The Mac will also make another chiming sound before restarting again.
6. Update the Mac
An update of the software on your Mac is also another way you can fix problems with USB connectivity. Follow these simple steps to update your Mac;
- Step 1: Open the App store app o your Mac
- Step 2: Click on 'Updates' in the App Store toolbar
- Step 3: You can then either simply click on 'Update All' or go through each software updating individually
Most software problems on Mac often result in data loss. If you have suffered data loss for one reason or another, you may need a reliable data recovery program. One of the best data recovery programs for Mac is Mac Data Recovery. Once downloaded on your Mac, the program will scan the device for the missing data and then recover it.
When the Mac USB ports are not working, the solutions above can easily help you fix it. If it is a hardware problem, you may want to consider other options like having a professional fix the device.
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Your device isn't recognized by your Mac
Follow these steps if your mouse, keyboard, or trackpad isn't recognized by your Mac.
Make sure that your wireless mouse, keyboard, or trackpad is turned on
The Magic Mouse and Magic Mouse 2 have a slide switch on the bottom of the device. Slide the switch to turn on the device. On the Magic Mouse, the green LED briefly lights up. On the Magic Mouse 2, green coloring is visible beneath the switch.
The Magic Keyboard, Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, and Magic Trackpad 2 have a slide switch on the back edge of the device. Slide the switch to turn on the device (green coloring becomes visible). Earlier Apple Wireless Keyboard models have a power button on the right side of the device. Press the button and you see a green LED on the top of the device, near the button.
When you turn these devices on, they appear as connected in Bluetooth preferences and in the Bluetooth menu in your menu bar. If a device doesn't appear there, make sure it's charged or replace it batteries, and make sure it's been paired with your Mac.
Make sure that your device has been set up to work with your Mac
Learn how to pair your Magic Mouse 2, Magic Keyboard, Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, Magic Trackpad 2 and earlier models of Apple wireless devices with your Mac.
Make sure that Bluetooth is turned on
Use your Mac notebook's built-in trackpad or a USB mouse to choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Bluetooth. Make sure that Bluetooth is turned on.
Refer to the table below for more information on determining the Bluetooth status. If the Bluetooth icon doesn't appear, or if the menu bar status continues to indicate that Bluetooth is off, restart your computer and then try to turn Bluetooth on again.
|Bluetooth menu icon||Bluetooth status|
|Bluetooth is on, but no wireless devices are connected to the Mac. See the Make sure that your wireless mouse, keyboard, or trackpad is turned on section of this article.|
|Bluetooth is on and at least one wireless device is connected.|
|When this icon flashes, at least one wireless device has a low battery. Click the Bluetooth icon to identify the affected device, then recharge the device or replace its batteries.|
|Bluetooth is off. Click the Bluetooth icon using a USB mouse or built-in trackpad and select Turn Bluetooth On.|
|Bluetooth is offline or unavailable. Restart your Mac. If the Bluetooth status doesn’t change, disconnect all USB devices and restart your Mac again.|
Make sure that your devices are charged
Magic Mouse 2, Magic Keyboard, Magic Keyboard with Numeric Keypad, and Magic Trackpad 2 have built-in rechargeable batteries. You can charge these devices by connecting them to a Mac or a USB power adapter using a Lightning to USB Cable. For the fastest battery charging performance, be sure your device is switched on when connected to the Lightning to USB Cable.
To check the battery level of these devices, click the Bluetooth icon in your Mac's menu bar, then select your device by name. If the battery level of any device is low, recharge the device. If the device isn’t showing, make sure the device is turned using the steps outlined above.
Turn the device off and on
If your Apple wireless mouse, keyboard, or trackpad isn't recognized by your Mac after following the tips above, try turning the wireless device off, waiting a few seconds, and then turning it back on.
Your mouse or keyboard intermittently stops responding
- Click the mouse or trackpad or press a key on the keyboard to reconnect the device to the computer. It might take a moment for the device to respond.
- Check for wireless interference.
Your mouse doesn't scroll up or down or side to side
If you can't use your mouse to scroll through a web page or document, make sure that you're using the correct Multi-Touch gestures and have set up your scrolling speed preferences correctly.
Your mouse or trackpad doesn't track as expected
Apple Wireless Mouse, Magic Mouse, and Magic Mouse 2 can be used on most smooth surfaces. If tracking issues occur, try these options:
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- Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Mouse. Set the ”Tracking speed” slider to adjust how fast the pointer moves as you move the mouse.
- Try using a different surface to see if tracking improves.
- Turn the mouse over and inspect the sensor window. Use compressed air to gently clean the sensor window if dust or debris is present.
- If multiple Bluetooth wireless devices are in use nearby, try turning them off one at a time to see if the issue improves.
Learn more what to do if your trackpad isn't tracking correctly.
Your keyboard has one or more keys that don't respond
Use the Keyboard Viewer to test whether the keyboard keys are responding correctly when they are pressed.
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- Choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Keyboard.
- Click the Input Sources tab.
- Make sure that the keyboard language that you use is listed on the left side. If it's not, click the add button (+) and choose from the languages that appear.
- Select the ”Show Input menu in menu bar” checkbox.
- Click the Keyboard tab, then select ”Show keyboard and emoji viewers in menu bar” checkbox, if present.
- From the Input menu in the menu bar, choose Show Keyboard Viewer. The Keyboard Viewer showing the keyboard layout appears on your display.
- Type the key on the keyboard that doesn’t respond and see if the corresponding key highlights on the Keyboard Viewer. If it does, that key is functioning correctly.
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If you enable the Mouse Keys feature, many keys might not respond as you expect. To turn off Mouse keys, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Accessibility. Choose Mouse & Trackpad from the list on the left side, then then deselect the Enable Mouse Keys checkbox.