2018 fix: fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10

By: Ivan Jenic
7 minute read

Windows 10 brought improved security and one of these features that improves the security of your computer is fingerprint scan. Fingerprint scan sounds amazing if you have confidential data on your computer and you don’t want anybody to access it, however, it seems that fingerprint scanning isn’t working for some users on Windows 10, so let’s see how can we resolve this issue.

What to do if Fingerprint Doesn’t Work in Windows 10

Not being able to use your fingerprint can be a security risk, and in this article we’re going to cover the following issues:

  • Windows 10 fingerprint reader not working HP, Dell, Lenovo – According to users, fingerprint reader isn’t working on HP, Dell and Lenovo devices. This issue isn’t related only to these brands and it can appear on almost any PC.
  • Windows Hello fingerprint setup not working – Many users reported that Windows Hello fingerprint setup isn’t working for them. This can be a problem since you won’t be able to use fingerprint login at all.
  • Fingerprint scanner, reader doesn’t work with Windows 10 – According to users, fingerprint scanner won’t work on their PC. Keep in mind that this issue affects both built-in and USB fingerprint readers.
  • Windows 10 fingerprint without PIN, Hello – Users are often asking if they can use their fingerprint without setting up PIN or using Windows Hello. Unfortunately this isn’t possible, and the only way to use a fingerprint login is to set up a PIN beforehand.
  • Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out – According to users, sometimes the fingerprint option can become grayed out. If that’s the case, try reinstalling your fingerprint reader drivers and check if that helps.
  • Windows Hello isn’t available on this device – Sometimes you might get message saying that Windows Hello isn’t available on your device. This message usually occurs if you don’t have fingerprint reader or if it doesn’t work properly.
  • Windows 10 fingerprint login not working, not available, missing – Users reported various problems with fingerprint login, and if the fingerprint feature isn’t working of if it’s missing, be sure to try some of our solutions.
  • Windows 10 fingerprint stopped working – Few users reported that fingerprint stopped working on their PC suddenly. If you have the same problem, you just need to recreate fingerprints and the issue should be resolved.
  • Windows 10 fingerprint and PIN not working – In several instances users reported that they can’t use fingerprint or PIN login. If that’s the case, you might want to try recreating your PIN and fingerprint and see if that helps.

Usually these issues are caused by driver incompatibility, so there are few things that you can do:

Solution 1 – Roll back drivers / use default drivers

  1. Open Device Manager by right clicking the Start Button and choosing Device Manager from the list.
    Windows 10 fingerprint stopped working
  2. Locate your fingerprint driver and double click it to open its properties.
  3. Click the Roll Back Driver button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint and PIN not working

This will install the previously installed driver instead the one you’re currently using. Sometimes it’s better to use the default driver that comes with Windows 10, and to go back to the default drivers do the following:

  1. Open Device Manager.
  2. Find your fingerprint scanner driver.
  3. Right click it and choose Uninstall device.
    Windows 10 fingerprint reader not working HP
  4. Check Delete the driver software for this device and click Uninstall.
    Windows Hello fingerprint setup not working

Solution 2 – Update your drivers

Often it’s better to use the latest driver optimized for Windows 10, so make sure that you visit your fingerprint scanner manufacturer and check for latest Windows 10 drivers.

If there are no Windows 10 drivers you can just download the latest drivers instead. It’s also worth mentioning that in certain cases older drivers can actually work better than the latest ones, so you might try some older drivers as well.

Updating drivers manually is very annoying, so we recommend you to download this driver updater tool (100% safe and tested by us) to do it automatically.


Solution 3 – Switch to local account / create a new account

The last thing we’re going to try is switching to local account, and if this still doesn’t help, you may even create a new Windows Account. Here’s how to switch to local account, if you’re not sure:

  1. Go to Settings and click on Account icon.
  2. In your account click Sign in with a local account instead.
    Fingerprint scanner doesn't work with Windows 10
  3. You’ll be asked to enter current password. Now click on Next.
    Windows 10 fingerprint without PIN
  4. Set your user name, password for you local account. After doing that, click on Next.
    Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out
  5. Now click on Sign out and finish.

In addition, you can try creating a new account and setting up fingerprint scanner for it. After that just delete the new account and switch back to old one.


Solution 4 – Prevent your PC from turning off USB devices

If you’re using a USB fingerprint reader, you might be able to fix this problem simply by preventing your PC from turning off USB devices. This is relatively simple, and you can do it by following these steps:

  1. Open Device Manager.
  2. Go to Universal Serial Bus controllers section and double click USB Root Hub.
    Windows Hello fingerprint setup not working
  3. Navigate to the Power Management tab. Now uncheck Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power. Click on OK to save changes.
    Fingerprint scanner, reader doesn't work with Windows 10
  4. Repeat these steps for all USB Root Hub devices that you have on your PC.

After doing that, your fingerprint reader should start working again. If your device has a built-in fingerprint reader, you might want to repeat the same steps for it and prevent your PC from turning it off.


Solution 5 – Update HP Support Assistant

If fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10, the problem might be HP Support Assistant application. If you have this application on your PC, be sure to update it to the latest version.

You can do that simply by running the application and choosing the update option or you can download the latest version from HP’s website. After the application is updated, restart your PC and the fingerprint reader will start working again.

Keep in mind that this solution works only if you’re using an HP device. If you have a PC from another brand and you don’t have HP Support Assistant on your PC, then this solution doesn’t apply to you.


Solution 6 – Uninstall fingerprint software

According to users, if fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10, you might be able to fix the problem simply by uninstalling the fingerprint software. To do that, follow these simple steps:

  1. Open the Settings app. You can do that quickly by using Windows Key + I shortcut.
  2. Settings app will now appear. Navigate to the Apps section.
    Windows Hello isn't available on this device
  3. Locate the fingerprint reader software on the list and select it. Now click the Uninstall button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint login not available
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the uninstallation process.

After removing the fingerprint software, you need to remove the fingerprint driver from your PC. We explained in detail how to do that in Solution 1, so be sure to check it out for detailed instructions.

After uninstalling fingerprint driver and software, restart your PC. Windows 10 will now install the default driver and the issue should be resolved.


Solution 7 – Remove fingerprints and update fingerprint driver

If fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10, you can fix the problem simply by removing the fingerprints. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Open the Settings app and navigate to Accounts section.
    Windows 10 fingerprint without Hello
  2. Select Sign-in options from the menu on the left. In the right pane go to Windows Hello section and click on Remove button under Fingerprint.
    Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out

After removing fingerprints, you need to remove your fingerprint driver. To see how to do that, check Solution 1. Now you need to download and install the latest driver for your fingerprint reader. Lastly, you need to register two new fingerprints. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Go to Settings app > Accounts > Sign-in options.
  2. Make sure that you have a PIN set up. If not, set up your PIN now.
  3. Go to Windows Hello section in the right pane and click on Set up button.
  4. Follow the instructions on the screen to set up your fingerprint.
  5. After adding a fingerprint, go to Windows Hello section and click on Add another button.
  6. Follow the instructions on the screen to add another fingerprint.

After doing that your fingerprint reader should start working.


Solution 8 – Remove and recreate your PIN

Several users reported that fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10 due to their PIN. However, you can fix this problem simply by removing your PIN. To do that, follow these steps:

  1. Open Settings app and go to Accounts > Sign-in options. In the PIN section click the Remove button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint and PIN not working
  2. Click the Remove button again to confirm.
  3. You’ll be asked to enter your Microsoft Account password. Enter the password and click on OK.
    Windows 10 fingerprint reader not working Dell

Now you just need to add your PIN again. You can do that by following these steps:

  1. Go to Sign-in options and click on Add button in PIN section.
    Windows Hello isn't available on this device
  2. Enter your password and click on Sign in button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint login not working
  3. Enter the desired PIN in two input fields and click on OK.
    Windows 10 fingerprint stopped working

After you recreate your PIN, the problem should be completely resolved and you’ll be able to use your fingerprint again.


Solution 9 – Update your BIOS

If the fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10, the problem might be your BIOS. If you device has a built-in fingerprint reader, you might be able to fix this problem by updating your BIOS. BIOS update is an advanced procedure, and if you’re not careful you can cause irreversible damage to your PC. We wrote a short guide on how to flash your BIOS, so be sure to check it out.

In addition to updating BIOS, many users are recommending to update your chipset drivers as well.

If you have any other Windows 10-related issues you can check for the solution in our Windows 10 Fix section.


Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in September 2015 and has been since completely revamped and updated for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.


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