The current status of each individual piece of hardware in your Windows Vista PC is available from inside Device Manager. If there is a hardware problem, a detailed Device Manager error code will be listed to help you troubleshoot the issue.
Follow the easy steps below to view a hardware device's status from within Device Manager in Windows Vista.
Time Required: Viewing a device's status in Device Manager in Windows Vista usually takes less than a few minutes
Note: There are also several other ways to open Device Manager in addition to the method above. You can access Device Manager in whatever way is easiest for you. It's the same tool no matter the method.
With Device Manager open, locate the piece of hardware you want to view the status of.
Note: Work your way through the hardware categories by clicking the [+] icon. The specific pieces of hardware in your computer are listed under the major hardware categories.
Once you've found the hardware you're wanting to view the status of, right click on the its icon or text and choose Properties.
Locate the Device status area in the Properties window that is now open for your hardware.
Note: The Device status area surrounds a text box and a Check for solutions... button. You should see this in the bottom half of the window.
The information in this Device status text box contains the current status of this particular hardware device.
If the hardware device is working properly, the text will look something like this:
This device is working properly.
No action should be needed if the device is working. According to Windows Vista's assessment, everything is working properly right now.
If Windows determines that the hardware device is not working like it should, the text here will list an error message and error code and should look like this:
Error Message. (Code 00) Click 'Check for solutions' to send data about this device to Microsoft and to see if there is a solution available.
You should troubleshoot this issue based on the Device Manager error code shown in the message: List of Device Manager Error Codes.
Not a Windows Vista user? See How to View a Device's Status in Device Manager in Windows for links to steps specific for your operating system.