FIX: Fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10 [Windows Hello]

Ivan Jenic
by Ivan Jenic
Troubleshooting Expert
Passionate about all elements related to Windows and combined with his innate curiosity, Ivan has delved deep into understanding this operating system, with a specialization in drivers and driver troubleshooting. When he's not tackling... Read more
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  • If the Windows Hello fingerprint scanning is not working, this can create a security risk.
  • The main cause behind the Windows fingerprint scanning not working is a problematic driver.
  • A possible solution for the Windows Hello fingerprint not available issue is to update your drivers.
  • You can also try to use another fingerprint reader to secure your device.
 
Fingerprint reader won't work
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Windows 10 and now Windows 11 come with improved security and one of these features that improve the security of your computer is fingerprint scan.

A 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.

The message states that We couldn’t find a fingerprint scanner compatible with Windows Hello fingerprint so let’s see how we can resolve this issue.

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 blocked — The fingerprint reader is completely unresponsive, no matter what actions you may take
  • Windows 10 fingerprint reader not working HP, Dell, Lenovo – According to users, a fingerprint reader isn’t working on isn’t related only to these brands and it can appear on almost any PC
  • Windows Hello fingerprint setup not working – It can be a problem since you won’t be able to use fingerprint login at all
  • Fingerprint scanner, the reader doesn’t work with Windows 10 – This issue affects both built-in and USB fingerprint readers
  • Windows 10 fingerprint without a PIN, Hello – It’s impossible to use fingerprint scanning without setting up a PIN or using Windows Hello
  • Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out – The fingerprint option can become grayed out, can be fixed by reinstalling your fingerprint reader drivers
  • Windows Hello isn’t available on this device – This message usually occurs if you don’t have a fingerprint reader or if it doesn’t work properly
  • Windows 10 fingerprint login not working, not available, missingIf the fingerprint feature isn’t working or if it’s missing, be sure to try some of our solutions
  • Windows 10 fingerprint stopped working – Fingerprint scanning stopped working suddenly, can be fixed by resetting fingerprints
  • Windows 10 fingerprint and PIN not working – Can’t use fingerprint or PIN login, can be fixed by recreating your PIN and fingerprint

What can I do if the fingerprint reader is not working in Windows 11?

After updating to Windows 11, many users started complaining on the Microsoft Answers website that their fingerprint reader stopped working and can no longer use it to log in:

I upgraded to Windows 11 from my Windows 10 laptop meeting all the requirements. Since then I’m unable to use my fingerprint scanner on my laptop. After a day, the sign-in settings on the settings app are also not opening. I re-installed my biometric drivers but it didn’t work out. Please help me fix this issue. Is this a bug and will it be fixed in the next updates?

As this issue was reported by several users with ASUS laptops, one might assume that there are some compatibility issues with the drivers for the respective readers.

However, one user responded in the same thread that the fingerprint reader from his ASUS laptop works well.

Anyway, this doesn’t seem to be an isolated incident since other users complained on the Acer comunity website with the same problem:

My Acer 5 fingerprint reader was working great with Windows 10. When I changed to Windows 11 it stopped working. There are no options available for the Windows 11 sign-in window (Settings, Accounts, Sign-in Options). Is there a fix available or will one be available in the future? Will the fix be automatically installed by Windows Update?

In this case, the user managed to update the driver of the fingerprint reader from the Biometrics section from Device Manager and solved the problem right away.

We don’t have an official solution but most likely, this is a case of drivers compatibility issues that will be gradually updated as Windows 11 matures.

What can I do if fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10?

  1. Update your drivers
  2. Roll back drivers/use default drivers
  3. Use a different fingerprint reader
  4. Switch to local account / create a new account
  5. Prevent your PC from turning off USB devices
  6. Update HP Support Assistant
  7. Uninstall the fingerprint software
  8. Remove fingerprint scanning and update the fingerprint driver
  9. Remove and recreate your PIN
  10. Update your BIOS

1. 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 the 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 risky, so we recommend you to download and install a dedicated software to do it automatically.

Thus, you will keep your system away from damage by downloading and installing the wrong driver versions.

Various errors are the result of a malfunctioning driver. When this is the case, you may need to update or reinstall completely this specific component. As the process is not straight-forward to complete, we recommend using an automated tool for the job. Here's how to do it:

  1. Download and install DriverFix.
  2. Launch the app.
  3. Wait for the software to detect all your faulty drivers.
  4. You will now be presented with a list of all the drivers that have issues, and you just need to select the ones you’d liked fixed.
  5. Wait for DriverFix to download and install the newest drivers.
  6. Restart your PC for the changes to take effect.
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Disclaimer: this program needs to be upgraded from the free version in order to perform some specific actions.


2. Rollback drivers/use default drivers

2.1 Rollback the fingerprint scanner driver

  1. Right-click the Start button and choose Device Manager from the list.
    Windows 10 fingerprint stopped working device manager
  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 roll back driver

If you’re sure that the problem is the latest driver and you manage to roll it back, to avoid future problems, check out this step-by step guide that will help you block Windows 10 from auto-updating certain drivers.

2.2 Use the default driver from Windows

  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 uninstall driver
  4. Check Delete the driver software for this device and click Uninstall.
    Windows Hello fingerprint setup not working uninstall driver

If Windows can’t automatically download new drivers, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered with this excellent step-by-step guide.

3. Use a different fingerprint reader

  • 360° readability with anti-spoofing protection
  • FIDO and U2F certifications
  • Compatible with Dashlane, LastPass (Premium), Keeper (Premium), and Roboform, for websites
  • It's very small, easy to lose

If the issue persists, you can try to use a different fingerprint reader. In rare cases, your fingerprint reader might not be compatible with your computer’s hardware configuration or operating system.

Therefore, before buying a new fingerprint reader, make sure that the device is compatible with your machine.

We recommend getting the Kensington VeriMark USB Fingerprint Key, a tiny fingerprint reader that’s fully compatible with Windows.

4. Switch to local account/ create a new account

  1. Open Settings and click on the Account icon.
  2. In your account click Sign in with a local account instead.
    Fingerprint scanner doesn't work with Windows 10 sign in with a local account
  3. Fill out your password and click on Next.
    Windows 10 fingerprint without PIN add password local account
  4. Set your username, the password for your local account, and click on Next.
    Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out switch to a local account
  5. Click on Sign out and finish.

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

If Windows won’t let you add a new account, this expert guide will help you fix the problem and get things back to normal.

5. Prevent your PC from turning off USB devices

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

Your system may be turning off your USB device to save power. By deactivating this feature, your fingerprint reader will still be active.

6. Update HP Support Assistant

If the fingerprint reader doesn’t work in Windows 10, the problem might be the 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.

7. Uninstall the fingerprint software

  1. Open the Settings app using the Windows Key + I shortcut.
  2. Click on the Apps section.
    Windows Hello isn't available on this device apps settings
  3. Locate the fingerprint reader software on the list, select it, and click on the Uninstall button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint login not available apps and features uninstall an app
  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 like shown in Solution 2.

Next, restart your PC. Windows 10 will install the default driver and the issue should be resolved.

If you have trouble opening the Setting app, take a look at this comprehensive article to solve the issue in no time.

8. Remove fingerprint scanning and update the fingerprint driver

8.1 Remove the fingerprint scanning option

  1. Open the Settings app and click on the Accounts section.
    Windows 10 fingerprint without Hello Accounts
  2. Select Sign-in options from the menu on the left.Windows 10 fingerprint greyed out sign-in options
  3. In the right pane go to Windows Hello section and click on the Remove button under Fingerprint.
  4. Remove the fingerprint driver as explained in Solution 2.
  5. Download and install the latest driver for your fingerprint reader like shown in Solution 1.

8.2 Register new fingerprints

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

Still not working? Here’s another comprehensive guide that could help you fix the Windows Hello problem once and for all.

9. Remove and recreate your PIN

9.1 Remove the PIN

  1. Open the Settings app and go to Accounts, then click on the Sign-in options.
  2. In the PIN section click the Remove button.
    Windows 10 fingerprint and PIN not working remove password
  3. Click the Remove button again to confirm.
  4. Enter your Microsoft Account password and click on OK.
    Windows 10 fingerprint reader not working Dell verify password removal

9.2 Add your PIN again

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

10. Update your BIOS

If the fingerprint doesn’t work in Windows 10, the problem might be your BIOS. If your device has a built-in fingerprint reader, you might be able to fix this problem by updating your BIOS.

The 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, many users are recommending updating your chipset drivers as well so make sure you try that too. You can update your drivers using our first two solutions from this guide.

We hope that you managed to fix the fingerprint scanning for your Windows 10 device by using our solutions.

If the PIN isn’t working on Windows 10, here’s an excellent guide that will help you fix the PIN problem in Windows 10 right away.

For more suggestions or questions, reach for the comments section below. Other users might appreciate your input.

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Frequently Asked Questions

  • You will need to change the sign-in option in the Accounts settings. Learn what to do if Windows doesn’t recognize your fingerprint.

  • There can be many reasons for that, from a dirty scanner to a problematic driver. Here’s how to fix the fingerprint reader in Windows 10.

  • You can do that by using the Update driver feature in Device Manager. You can also use one of the best driver update software from our list.

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