8814: USB Mouse and Keyboard Do Not Work After Restoring with Acronis Universal Restore

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How to make the system initialize USB mouse and keyboard if they do not work after restoring to dissimilar hardware

This article applies to:

  • Acronis Backup 11.5 (Acronis Backup & Recovery 11.5)
  • Acronis Backup & Recovery 11
  • Acronis Backup & Recovery 10
  • Acronis True Image Echo
  • Acronis True Image Home 2010 Plus Pack
  • Acronis True Image Home 2011 Plus Pack

Symptoms

  1. You restore a Windows system to a machine with dissimilar hardware;
  2. You apply Acronis Universal Restore;
  3. After that USB mouse and keyboard do not work.

Cause

This issue is not directly related to the algorithms of Acronis Universal Restore and is rather specific to some Windows configurations and hardware specifics.

Acronis Universal Restore installs just the new critical boot device drivers into the system and modifies HAL in order to make Windows bootable on the new hardware. Once the recovery is successful, and Windows is able to boot properly, the job of Acronis Universal Restore is over. The rest is done by Windows on its first several boot-ups after the recovery on the new hardware. See also Acronis Universal Restore.

In particular, all devices are initialized by Windows using the priority and algorithms Microsoft has designed – e.g. Windows may install USB HID devices (mouse and keyboard) after other devices with higher priority are installed. Thus, there is a possible situation when USB keyboard and mouse may be unresponsive - e.g. because of other devices waiting in the initialization queue.

 

Solution

The easiest workaround is to reboot the machine several times to make Windows initialize all the necessary devices including USB mouse and keyboard.

If rebooting the machine several times does not help, you can connect to it via RDP and manually initialize the USB mouse and keyboard in the Device Manager. If the remote connections were not enabled on the source machine, they can be enabled as described in the following article:

If the mouse and keyboard still fail to initialize, there is a special workaround created by Acronis Customer Central to force USB devices initialization on the first system startup:

  1. Prepare the source system:
    • Download and unpack the contents of i386.zip (for Windows 32 bit) or ia64.zip (for Windows 64 bit) directly to the root of C:\ of your source system (i.e. devcon.exe and USB_batch.bat files must be present right in the root of C:\);
    • Invoke Task Scheduler:
      • Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008: Start-Run -> taskschd.msc
      • Windows XP/2000/2003: Start -> All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> Scheduled Tasks
    • Schedule the task to run the C:\USB_batch.bat script extracted from the ZIP file At Startup or When my computer starts. Make sure you schedule the task with Administrator credentials;
    • USB_batch.bat will execute a special DEVCON utility from Microsoft to enable and initialize all USB devices.
  2. Back up your source system to restore it to the target machine with dissimilar hardware;
  3. Remove the scheduled task from Windows Task Scheduler on the source system;
  4. Restore the new backup to the target machine using Acronis Universal Restore. See:
  5. Once the system boots up, it will run the batch file which will enable the USB devices via DEVCON utility. On the first Windows boot, wait for 5 to 10 minutes, and if the USB mouse and keyboard still do not work, reboot the system (do it a couple of times to make sure all devices are initialized). The USB devices should now be initialized;
  6. Remove the scheduled task from Windows Task Scheduler on the restored system.

More information

There is an enhancement request to automate this process and make it the embedded part of Acronis Universal Restore, however currently there is no ETA of when this will be implemented.

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