Installing Windows 7 using USB 3 – “Cannot Find Required DVD/USB Driver” Error and Solution

Dell Inspiron 15R USB 3 Port

As many of you will know from my constant complaining my Dell Inspiron 15R has suffered a gradual but somewhat annoying slow-down and build up of weird bugs — Microsoft Word only opens on the third attempt, after multiple attempts at reinstallation, for example.

Yesterday I decided enough was enough and it was time for some spring cleaning, so I downloaded Windows 7 Professional 64bit from The Univeristy of Hulls Microsoft Academic Alliance portal. Academic Alliance is great, it allows students of subscribing institutions to download and install free versions of Microsofts products including Windows XP, Windows 7, the Windows 8 Beta and parts of the Microsoft Office Suite.

Once my Windows download had finished I started up another bit of Microsoft Software, the “Microsoft USB/DVD Download Tool” which allows you to “Create a bootable DVD or USB flash drive” — In other words make a Windows Install Disk, or in my case an Install USB Flash Drive.

Having installed Windows 7 — and indeed 8 — from USB a few times now the process went pretty quick for me. Select the ISO, Select USB, wait a few minutes, restart the computer, press F12, select boot from USB. Simple right?

Normally, yes, if you put the USB stick in one of the old USB 2.0 ports everything will run through as you expect and you’ll have your shiny new install of Windows 7 in a jiffy — much quicker than burning and installing from DVD.

However if you, like me, for whatever reason plug your USB into one of the blue USB 3.0 ports you’ll run into problems once you’ve selected your language and keyboard type. The error will read “Cannot Find Required DVD/USB Driver”, this is because Windows 7 by default doesn’t have any drivers for USB 3 controllers, and therefore cannot interact with the flash drive in a way it expects to.

At first it took me a while to work out why, and indeed someone less computer literate than myself might not have worked it out — then again I doubt someone less computer literate than my self would be installing from USB 3.0, but i digress. So this blog post is to help anyone who may come across this error.

The fix is simple. Move the USB Flash Drive from the USB 3.0 Port (that’s the blue one) to the USB 2.0 port (that’s the black one).

I assume some other laptops and desktops may encounter similar issues, so i hope this helps a few people — if it does why not let me know in the comments 🙂

Danny.

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