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MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

Windows 7 on ThinkPads
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onkel_keks
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Location: Vienna, Austria

MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#1 Post by onkel_keks » Fri Jul 08, 2016 11:31 am

Hello,

I have a bit of a strange problem on my hands - I recently bought a used Mini Dock Series 3 for my X220. Plugged everything in - that is, VGA Monitor, USB MIDI Controller, USB Soundcard, USB Mouse, USB Keyboard. Put the X220 on the dock, and all are working except -- the USB Keyboard. It's a Dell with integrated Smartcard Reader (RT7D60), wired - no wireless voodoo in my house. Strange thing is, Windows recognizes that "something" is attached, and installed some drivers after I unplugged an replugged it, and Device Manager shows no strange, not-working or deactivated devices - but the keyboard simply doesn't work. If I plug it into a USB port on the X220 itself, it works flawlessly though - but that would defeat the purpose of a docking station a tiny bit.

So, I start Ubuntu Linux and miraculously, the Dell Keyboard now works on the Dock USB! (as it did before, in the BIOS, as well)
Obviously, this is somehow related to Windows 7 and the drivers it uses. But then again, it must also involve the Docking Station in some way because even in Win7, the keyboard works if plugged in directly to a X220-USB port.


And here comes my question(s): Has anybody experienced similar weirdness with the USB ports on the MiniDock? Are there maybe special drivers (for the MiniDock), or firmware updates available that would help? (I've read about firmware for the Ultra Dock, not sure if the MiniDock even has firmware...)

Any input is highly appreciated.
Thank you very much!

dr_st
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Re: MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#2 Post by dr_st » Fri Jul 08, 2016 1:59 pm

Welcome to the forum. :)

Did you try different USB ports on the dock, perhaps? Is it by chance a USB 3.0 variant and you plugged the keyboard into the USB 3.0 port?
Current: Thinkpad 25 (20K7), Yoga 14 (20FY), X220 4291-4BG, T410 2537-R46, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G
Collectibles: T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X32 (IPS Screen)
Retired: X61 7673-V2V, T60 1952-F76, A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad

onkel_keks
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2016 11:17 am
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#3 Post by onkel_keks » Fri Jul 08, 2016 2:22 pm

Thank you for your welcome :-)

I should've been more specific; it's not a USB 3 variant and I did try all ports on the dock - always the same result; drivers get installed but keyboard won't work. If I use any "on-board" USB port of the laptop, it works.

dr_st
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Re: MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#4 Post by dr_st » Fri Jul 08, 2016 4:12 pm

A bizarre issue indeed.

Have you compared the situation in the Device Manager in the working (via laptop) and non-working (via dock) cases? Does the keyboard appear in both situations? Exactly under the same name?

If the keyboard is visible in the Device Manager but just not working, perhaps try uninstalling it (and ticking the box for 'delete driver software' if possible), then unplug and replug, forcing Windows to detect it again. Maybe by chance it will fix it.
Current: Thinkpad 25 (20K7), Yoga 14 (20FY), X220 4291-4BG, T410 2537-R46, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G
Collectibles: T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X32 (IPS Screen)
Retired: X61 7673-V2V, T60 1952-F76, A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad

onkel_keks
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2016 11:17 am
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#5 Post by onkel_keks » Sat Jul 09, 2016 4:46 am

So, I tried a few things with...mixed results. I uninstalled the drivers when I had it plugged into the X220 directly to see what drivers it would install. Well, it turns out that it's now no longer working here either...on the bright side, I also know now that it's not related to the MiniDock, but purely a Windows fucissue.

You see, I had the Dell Keyboard attached to that USB port before, several months ago, so there already were drivers installed. Then something must have happened to my Windows installation, possibly related to some Win10 experimentation - although I did a 1:1 backup clone and reverted to that. Whatever happened caused weird driver installation issues, where Windows would fail to automatically install drivers with a "file not found" error (https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/win ... c59?auth=1). I don't know why the drivers for the other devices connected to the dock installed ok, but that the keyboard is not working is definitely related to that Windows issue - since it stopped working on the X220's USB ports as well.


Just in case anyone is interested or has similar problems, here are a few more details on what I did so far:

From that Microsoft thread I linked to above, I learned that a driver installation generates a log output in
C:\Windows\inf\setupapi.dev.log
So I deleted that file and tried to install the keyboard driver (which I uninstalled previously) by right-clicking on the "Dell Smartcard Keyboard" in the "Other devices" section and selecting "Update Driver Software", then "Search automatically". Usually with a device as simple as a USB keyboard, that should suffice to install a working driver. In my case it failed with that "file not found" error. In the log file, I see that it tries to read the files
hidusb.sys
hidclass.sys
and
hidparse.sys

from C:\windows\inf\. Which is weird, because C:\windows\inf\ only contains *.inf and *.pnf files, no *.sys files. I guess that this is close to the root of the problem - a wrong search path.

Anyway, the files it tries to find are actually located in C:\windows\system32\drivers\, so I copy them over to C:\windows\inf\ - and the installation seems to go through. However, I get a prompt saying that the driver publisher could not be verified (weird, since these drivers are packaged with Windows and are in fact from Microsoft). And cue the status quo - Device Manager says drivers are installed and everything's fine, but the keyboard won't do a thing.

If anybody has any idea whatsoever, please do tell. But I understand that this is more of a Windows- than a Thinkpad-specific issue.

Thanks again!

onkel_keks
Posts: 4
Joined: Fri Jul 08, 2016 11:17 am
Location: Vienna, Austria

Re: MiniDock 3, X220, Win 7 - USB Keyboard not working

#6 Post by onkel_keks » Sat Jul 09, 2016 11:59 am

Solved it - though I am not entirely sure how. I thought I'll share my experience, maybe it's useful for somebody someday.

The last few hour's been an emotional rollercoaster - I had tried re-installing the driver multiple times, with different USB ports, did the infamous "sfc /scannow", searched for drivers from Dell - all to no avail. Then, while searching for my symptoms I came upon a thread that proposed an interesting hypothesis: that a failed Windows update (or something to that effect) somehow damaged the Windows driver store, and that the problem could be solved by re-installing the drivers from an original Windows 7 installation DVD.
Unfortunately, I don't remember the URL for that thread and can't find it in my history, but I'll list the steps taken - be warned, this is not for the faint of heart, you'll need a few GB (3-4) of free disk space and for the love of god, BACKUP YOUR DATA:

* Obtain ISO of Windows 7 (or a DVD); I had one from MSDNAA
* Mount that ISO and navigate to \sources\install.wim, and open that file using 7-zip
* There will be a folder called "1" in that archive file, open that and go to .\1\Windows\System32
* Extract the folders "drivers" and "DriverStore" to a temporary folder on the hard drive, say C:\Temp\. These are the original drivers that come with the Windows installation.
* Using a command prompt, navigate to the DriverStore folder you just copied, into the subfolder "en-US", and execute "copy *.inf_loc *.inf".
* Move all the *.inf files that just got created to a third folder on the same level as "drivers" and "DriverStore" and call it "inf" (i.e., C:\temp\inf)

Now I used my Ubuntu installation on my second SSD, if anybody is trying to reproduce these steps, you can use a Ubuntu Live system from a thumbdrive as well.
* Boot Ubuntu, mount your Windows drive. Navigate to <mount point>/Windows/System32 and rename the existing folders DriverStore and drivers to "DriverStore-org" and "drivers-org".
* Go to <mount point>/Windows/ and rename the folder "inf" to "inf-org".
* Copy the folders "DriverStore" and "drivers" from <mount point>/Temp/ to <mount point>/Windows/System32/
* Copy the folder "inf" from <mount point>/Temp/ to <mount point>/Windows/

Do not boot into Windows now. You have factually wiped all drivers from your system except the ones included in a standard Windows installation. So we need to copy those extra drivers back:

* Go to <mount point>/Windows/inf-org, select all files and copy (Ctrl+C), then go to <mount point>/Windows/inf and paste (Ctrl+V) without overwriting any file. Only the files not already contained in the new folder should be copied.
* Do the same for the "drivers" and "DriverStore" folder.

I then gulped and rebooted into Windows - to my disbelief, the system actually booted up ok and the keyboard worked!

...
But this is not the end of the story. Sadly, while the keyboard worked, the fingerprint reader and SD card reader (the latter one being displayed as "Base System Device" in Device Manager - somebody should tell Ricoh that their SD card reader is not that important) suddenly didn't, and reinstalling the drivers didn't help.
So, deciding that the fingerprint reader is more important than an external keyboard, I booted into Ubuntu again, this time renaming "inf", "drivers" and "DriverStore" to "inf-mod", "drivers-mod" and "DriverStore-mod", and restoring the original folders by removing their "-org" suffix.

One more reboot, and to my astonishment the keyboard still works. Fingerprint and SD not, but then I uninstalled the SD reader software, rebooted, uninstalled the Fingerprint software, rebooted, uninstalled any remaining drivers from Device Manager, rebooted, installed the Fingerprint software again, rebooted, installed the SD software and rebooted again. Then I had to open up the fingerprint reader software once to re-enable the auto-login feature and that was that - all working as expected. Removed the "*-mod" folders to save SSD space.

What a fun day! :|

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