The Code 41 error with Device Manager indicates that your operating system loaded the driver, but can’t find the hardware for the device you need. You won’t be able to use the hardware you need until you fix this issue. This error is most common with Windows XP and Windows Vista, although the possibility of it appearing with another version of the OS shouldn’t be excluded.
“Windows successfully loaded the device driver for this hardware but cannot find the hardware device. (Code 41)”
Although this issue can appear in various environments, the most commonly found one is when you try to use a CD/DVD drive, and you get the message, rendering your drive useless. You may also experience entire partitions missing from My Computer, which will lead to serious headaches.
However, you shouldn’t be afraid as there are two fairly easy solutions to this problem that have been reported to work for a number of users that are facing this problem, so read on to see how you can solve it as well.
Method 1: Remove the registry entry
A quick note before the steps – if you modify your registry incorrectly, or mess something up within the Registry Editor, you might be facing serious problems with your operating system, and those problems may require you to completely reinstall the OS. Please be careful and follow the instructions carefully. Also, if you have installed software products for CD writing, make sure that you uninstall them before modifying the registry keys.
First, you should open the Registry Editor. Press simultaneously the Windows and R buttons on your keyboard. In the Run window that opens, type regedit in the box and click OK.
Now that you’ve opened it, use the navigation pane on the left side to navigate to the following subkey:
When you click on it, from the File menu, click Export. Type savedkey in the box, and click Save.
Click the REG_MULTI_SZ data type UpperFilters, and from the Edit menu, select Delete.
Click Yes when you’re asked to confirm the deletion. Repeat the following with the REG_MULTI_SZ data type LowerFilters, and quit the Registry Editor. Finally, restart your computer. If these data types are missing, you can go to the next method.
Method 2: Replace the problematic driver
If the previous method didn’t work, or you didn’t manage to find the required data types, you can try this one which replaces the driver that is causing the problems.
- Press the Windows key on your keyboard and type Device Manager. Open the result.
- Locate the malfunctioning drive. Expand both Disk drives, and DVD/CD-ROM drives, and look for a yellow exclamation mark, or a question mark next to it. Click to select it, and from the Action menu, select Uninstall. Click OK to confirm the removal. Repeat this step for any other drives with an exclamation mark or a question mark.
- From the Action menu, click Scan for hardware changes.
- Close all windows you have opened, and reboot your computer. Windows will install any drivers that may be missing.
While this may seem like a huge headache, if you follow the methods we mentioned, you will see that it is in fact extremely easy to fix. You will have your system up and running in no time, and without the Code 41 error.