If you can't initiate a device in Windows 10 Device Manager due to "This device cannot start (Code 10)" error, here is how to fix it.

For proper functioning of your computer, it is very important that the individual hardware and software devices present on it works properly. If any of the device fail to start/work or function, the user will start facing its consequences.

Recently, while working on an older machine, I found that its keyboard stopped working. Now since keyboard wasn’t working, I need to take the help of another machine to remotely fix the issue. To locate the cause, I fired up Device Manager, and checked the status of keyboard device present there. I found that keyboard device wasn’t working along with following status:

This device cannot start. (Code 10)

{Operation Failed}

The requested operation was unsuccessful.

[FIX] 'This Device Cannot Start (Code 10)' For Device Manager In Windows 10

Here ‘Code 10’ clearly indicates that device may have software as well as hardware issue. If its software issue, you can easily solve it using fixes mentioned below. However, if it is hardware issue, you may need to visit nearest computer repair shop to confirm this. If hardware is culprit, you might need to repair or even replace the faulty hardware with latest one.

FIX : ‘This Device Cannot Start (Code 10)’ For Device Manager In Windows 10

FIX 1 – General Solutions

You can try following things to resolve such kind of error messages:

1. In Device Manager, right click on problematic device and select Uninstall.

2. After uninstalling the device, click Action > Scan for hardware changes.

3. If issue still present, try updating the same device software using steps mentioned here. In case if device driver update fails, check this fix.

If nothing works, go for FIX 2.

FIX 2 – Using Registry Editor

Registry Disclaimer: The further steps will involve registry manipulation. Making mistakes while manipulating registry could affect your system adversely. So be careful while editing registry entries and create a System Restore point first.

1. Press W8K + R and put regedit in Run dialog box to open Registry Editor (if you’re not familiar with Registry Editor, then click here). Click OK.

Windows 10 Registry Editor

2. In the Registry Editor window, navigate to following registry key:


3. When you expand Class registry key, you’ll see some long named registry sub-keys which corresponds to a unique Globally Unique Identifier (GUID) representing a device present on your system. Here the number of GUID based registry sub-keys equals to devices present on your system. You can take help of this list to locate the device with which you’re having issue:

GUID Device
4d36e965-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 CD/DVD/Blu-ray drives CDROM
4d36e967-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Hard drives DiskDrive
4d36e968-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Video adapters Display
4d36e969-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Floppy controllers FDC
4d36e980-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Floppy drives FloppyDisk
4d36e96a-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Hard drive controllers HDC
745a17a0-74d3-11d0-b6fe-00a0c90f57da Some USB devices HIDClass
6bdd1fc1-810f-11d0-bec7-08002be2092f IEEE 1394 host controller 1394
6bdd1fc6-810f-11d0-bec7-08002be2092f Cameras and scanners Image
4d36e96b-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Keyboards Keyboard
4d36e96d-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Modems Modem
4d36e96f-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Mice and pointing devices Mouse
4d36e96c-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Audio and video devices Media
4d36e972-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Network adapters Net
4d36e978-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 Serial and parallel ports Ports
4d36e97b-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 SCSI and RAID controllers SCSIAdapter
4d36e97d-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 System buses, bridges, etc. System
36fc9e60-c465-11cf-8056-444553540000 USB host controllers and hubs USB

GUID for only important devices are mentioned here. Complete list of GUIDs for Windows 10 is available here.

Since we’re having issue with keyboard device and it corresponds to 4d36e96b-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318 GUID according to above mentioned table, hence we’ll go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{4d36e96b-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318}. You can locate any device mentioned above with this formula: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Class\{GUID}

[FIX] 'This Device Cannot Start (Code 10)' For Device Manager In Windows 10

4. In right pane, look for the UpperFilters and LowerFilters registry string(s). Right click on these registry string(s) and select Delete. In the confirmation prompt, click Yes.

[FIX] 'This Device Cannot Start (Code 10)' For Device Manager In Windows 10

5. Close Registry Editor and reboot the machine. After restart, you’ll find that the device is working properly.

[FIX] 'This Device Cannot Start (Code 10)' For Device Manager In Windows 10

That’s it!


  • Win10, 64, Creators Problem
    After the Win10 Creators update, I have a problem. I get error code 10 for the Ethernet adapter (Intel 8579V Gigabit Network Connection). This error only happens on wake up from sleep but fixes itself on restart. I updated the recommended Intel latest driver from Intel (under advisement of Intel support by a remote session that verified that the correct .inf file was installed and it was was specified for Win 10 Creators). This didn’t help so I removed it because Error Code 10 kept intermittently occurring after wake up from sleep as before. It was intermittent. Sometimes it happened and sometimes it didn’t , but it always fixed itself after restart.

    I tried to do your registry fix in Class: 4d36e972-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318, Device: Network adapters Class Net but there was no upperfilters or lowerfilter registry strings to delete as you indicated.

    Do you have any other ideas?

  • Kapil Arya

    ^^ You need to make sure, Ethernet card is working fine from hardware side. Take your device to nearest computer repair shop for this.

  • There is no card. I have an ASUS Sabertooth P67 motherboard with integrated Ethernet on the board. It worked fine before the Win10 creators upgrade. After that, no ethernet connection after wake up from sleep. However, it connects every time on restart. This indicates that it seems to be a software issue, not hardware.

    I tried your suggested registry fix in Class: 4d36e972-e325-11ce-bfc1-08002be10318, Device: Network adapters Class Net but there was no upperfilters or lowerfilter registry strings to delete as you indicated.

    Since I am not convinced it’s a hardware problem because it always connects on restart, do you have any other ideas how to correct it in the registry or elsewhere? Have you heard of this problem being a Win10 Creators issue?

  • If you are doing this for a USB or external drive, do not mess with the the Hard Disk (DiskDrive) you can no longer boot. You have to open regedit in the recovery console and mount the hive from your main windows installation, and then put them back in, or you will not be able to boot or even enter safe mode. So, whoops.

  • Kapil Arya

    ^^ Thanks Taylor for adding this!

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