How to fix missing COM ports in Device Manager

by Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Matthew Adams
Windows & Software Expert
Matthew is a freelancer who has produced a variety of articles on various topics related to technology. His main focus is the Windows OS and all the things... read more
Affiliate Disclosure
  • After updating the Windows OS, the desktop COM ports might disappear from Device Manager.
  • You will need to restore them and in this article, we're showing you how.
  • There are multiple possible solutions, such as updating your drivers, adding COM ports, or finding showing hidden devices.
  • We take you through each step and even recommend automated software that can save you time and hassle.
com ports device manager

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The Device Manager usually lists COM ports for desktops. However, those COM ports can sometimes disappear from the Device Manager window after users upgrade their Windows platforms.

It’s only natural to wonder where the COM ports have gone. Thus, you might need to restore missing COM ports so they can configure them via Device Manager.

Why is COM port not detected in Windows 10?

If the COM port isn’t detected, you’ll get a Unable to open serial port message on your PC. This can occur if the software can’t recognize the device you want to connect to the PC.

Other ports can also encounter issues, and users reported that USB ports aren’t working on their PC. This is most likely a driver issue, and it can be fixed with a update.

Speaking of issues, there are reports that Arduino port isn’t showing up for some users, and this is most likely caused by driver issues, so reinstall or update them.

How can I restore missing COM ports?

1. Select the Show hidden devices option

  1. Open the Win + X menu and click the Device Manager.
  2. Then click the View menu.
  3. Select the Show hidden devices option.
Show hidden devices option device manager add com port

You can also use dedicated motherboard information software. These can give you precious specs about your motherboard, CPU, BIOS, or memory. They can also detect issues such as the one at hand and help you fix them.

2. Update motherboard drivers

One way to restore missing COM ports in Device Manager is to update antiquated motherboard drivers.

You can do that either manually or using a dedicated tool such as DriverFix, which will scan for devices and components that need driver updates.

To add this tool to Windows 10, go to the website indicated below and download it for free.

After installing and opening DriverFix, it will scan your system.

The software will then display a list of antiquated device drivers that it can update. Click the Update button if the scan shows that motherboard drivers need updating.

DriverFix

DriverFix

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3. Add COM ports

  1. Open Device Manager as explained above.
  2. Click the Action menu.
  3. Select Add legacy hardware.Add Hardware window device manager add com port
  4. Press the Next button on that window.The Install the hardware option device manager add com port
  5. Select the Install the hardware that I manually select from a list radio button.
  6. Click the Next button to open a list of hardware to add.Hardware types list device manager add com port
  7. Then select Ports (COM & LPT) on the list, and press the Next button.
  8. Select the manufacturer for the ports or the Standard port types option, and click the Next button.
  9. Press the Finish button.

So those are some of the potential fixes that should restore COM ports in Device Manager. Afterward, you can configure the ports as required.

If you used another method to fix this problem, share it with the community using the comments section below.

Learn how to master your Windows OS from our extensive tutorials in the Windows 10 Hub.

Be prepared to deal with any software-related issue with our Troubleshooting Guides.

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