FIX: Devices and Printers won’t open in Windows 10/11

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
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device printers won't load windows 10

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Devices and Printers usually displays printers and other devices within the Control Panel as shown directly below. However, some users have stated that the Devices and Printers applet is blank and doesn’t display any devices when they open the Control Panel. Is Devices and Printers also blank when you open it in Windows? If so, here are a few resolutions that might fix the Devices and Printers Control Panel applet.

Devices and Printers won’t load in Windows 10

  1. Check the Bluetooth and Print Spooler Services are Enabled
  2. Run a System File Scan
  3. Register DLLs
  4. Open Devices and Printers in a New User Account
  5. Update Windows

1. Check the Bluetooth and Print Spooler Services are Enabled

Many users have confirmed that enabling Bluetooth fixes blank Devices and Printers applets. So check Bluetooth services are enabled. This is how you can switch the Bluetooth services on in Windows 10.

  • Open the Run accessory by pressing the Windows key + R keyboard shortcut.
  • Enter ‘services.msc’ in the Open text box, and press the OK button.

  • Double-click Bluetooth Support Service to open its properties window shown below.

  • Select Automatic on the Startup type drop-down menu.
  • Press the Start button if the service is stopped.
  • Click Apply and OK to confirm settings and close the window.
  • Repeat the steps above for all other Bluetooth services on the Services window, such as Bluetooth User Support, Bluetooth Audio Gateway, etc.
  • In addition, check the Print Spooler is on by double-clicking Printer Spooler on the Services window.

  • Click the Startup type drop-down menu and select Automatic.
  • Press the Start button to turn on the Printer Spooler.
  • Press the Apply and OK buttons.

— RELATED: Fix: File Explorer won’t detect Network devices in Windows 10

2. Run a System File Scan

The Devices and Printers applet might not open if there are corrupted or interrupted files. You can repair corrupted files with the System File Checker utility in Windows. This is how you can scan with the SFC in Windows 10.

  • Open Cortana’s search box by pressing its Type here to search button.
  • Enter ‘Command Prompt’ in the search box. Then right-click Command Prompt and select Run as administrator to open its window.

  • Firstly, enter ‘DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth’ in the Prompt and press Return.
  • Then enter ‘sfc /scannow’ in the Command Prompt and press Return to run a system file scan that will take up to half an hour.

  • After the SFC scan, the Command Prompt window might state, “Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files and successfully repaired them.” If so, restart your desktop or laptop.

3. Register DLLs

A blank Devices and Printers applet might be due to missing DLLs. Registering DLLs is a resolution that some users have confirmed can fix Devices and Printers. This is how you can register DLLs with the Command Prompt.

  • Press the Windows key + X to open the menu below.

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  • Select Command Prompt (Admin) on the Win + X menu.
  • Enter ‘regsvr32 “%ProgramFiles%Internet Explorerieproxy.dll”‘ in the Command Prompt window as shown below, and then press the Return key.

  • Then restart the desktop or laptop.

— RELATED: How to eject USB devices from Windows 10, 8.1 without any worries

4. Open Devices and Printers in a New User Account

The Devices and Printers applet might not open in corrupted user accounts. Try opening Devices and Printers in an alternative account. You can set up a new user account in Win 10 as follows.

  • Press the Settings button on the Start menu.
  • Select Accounts > Family & other people to open the settings shown directly below.

create new user account

  • Press the Add someone else to this PC button.
  • Click I don’t have this person’s sign-in information on the Microsoft Account window.
  • Then click Add a user without a Microsoft account to open the window shown directly below.

  • Enter the user account details in the required text boxes, and then press the Next button.
  • Thereafter, restart Windows and select to log in with the new user account you just set up.

5. Update Windows

Some users have also stated on forums that upgrading Window 10 versions fixed the Devices and Printers applet. So, users with older versions should update to the latest 1803 April 2018 build. Windows 10 updates are usually automatic unless you’ve adjusted the update settings. So make sure your Windows Update service isn’t switched off.

You can manually update to Windows 1803 from version 1709 or the Fall Creators Update with the Windows Update Assistant. Press the Update now button on this page to download the update assistant. Then open the Windows Update Assistant to update to the latest version.

Those are some of the resolutions that have fixed the Devices and Printers applet in Windows for many users. If you have another fix for Devices and Printers, feel free to share it below.


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