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Device Management

Device Manager does not display all devices by default. Non–Plug and Play devices and certain other devices are hidden. At times, you might need to view these hidden devices for troubleshooting problems with devices installed on your computer.

To view hidden devices

  • In Device Manager, click the View menu, and then select Show hidden devices .

In addition to hiding non–Plug and Play devices, Device Manager also hides phantom devices. These are devices which are not currently attached to the computer.

To view phantom devices

  1. At the command prompt, type:

  2. Start Device Manager.

  3. From the command prompt, type:
    start devmgmt.msc

You can now troubleshoot problems with hidden devices. For more information about troubleshooting device problems, see Troubleshooting Device Management later in this chapter and Troubleshooting Tools and Strategies in this book.



You can set Device Manager to always show phantom devices. In Control Panel, double-click System , click the Advanced tab, and then in the Environment Variables dialog box, create the variable set DEVMGR_SHOW_NONPRESENT_DEVICES=1 .