Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (2024)

Gaming on a PC has come a long way. There was a time when you could play a game using a few dedicated keys. But today, you can enhance gaming experiences by customizing the controls & adding accessories. Gamepad is the commonly used controller for this purpose.

However, connecting a gaming device to your PC can be challenging. Before enjoying your favorite titles, you need to optimize your gaming PC to eliminate errors you might face.

One common error that users face is the gamepad is detected but not working on Windows. The error appears when the device is connected, but you cannot find it in the game.

In this blog, alongside explaining how to fix the issue, we will also list the reasons.

Reasons for Controller Connected But Not Working in Game

The issue is common and occurs for either of the reasons below –

1. Issues with the USB port.

PCs have two types of ports, USB 2.0 and USB 3.0. To get the gamepad working, check device compatibility with the port. Otherwise, the device will be connected but won’t respond.

2. Error with the supported input API of your Controller

The issue often occurs when your controller does not support the XInput API. An older gamepad might work on the DirectInput API. However, if your controller is not working, it might be incompatible with the game you want to play.

3. Broken Drivers & Client Support

When the device establishes the connection but is not working correctly, it is a trait of broken drivers. Moreover, if you use Steam or any other gaming client, the controller detected but not found in the game error might occur due to the controller’s incompatibility with the client.

4. Controller Support on Your PC

Sometimes, the issue lies with device compatibility and support. Users often try to use their Xbox and PS controllers on their PC, but they need to remember these high-end controllers might need to be fixed on older PCs.

The reasons behind the issue are evident. Now let us move on to the fixes you can use to get over the issue.

Ways to Fix Gamepad Detected But Not Working

When the device is not working; most users instantly look for hardware support. Therefore, before looking for hardware solutions, try the following fixes.

Fix 1 – Use Windows Troubleshooter

The first thing to do in any malfunction is to use the built-in troubleshooter on Windows. It is practical and explains why your PC is bothering you. Here’s how to use the troubleshooter –

  • Use Windows + R to open the Run window.
  • Type Control to open the Control Panel.

Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (1)

  • Change the View to Large Icons in the Control Panel and look for Troubleshooting.

Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (2)

  • In the Troubleshooting section, look for View all options to find the list of devices connected to your PC.

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  • In the View All Section, Find your gamepad and right-click on it to run the troubleshooter as administrator. This ensures that the troubleshooting is done with no limitations.

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  • Once you have initiated the troubleshooting, simply follow the steps shown on the screen and let the troubleshooting work.

If the issue was related to your Device, this should resolve it. Once the troubleshooting is completed, disconnect the device, reconnect it and check if the issue is fixed.

Fix 2 – Keep Your Gaming Client Updated

If you are using Steam or any other client, ensure you are using the latest version, and the gamepad is correctly configured. To update your Steam client, follow these steps –

  • Run Steam on your computer by double-clicking on the application icon.
  • In the client, You can find a top menu bar with options such as Steam, friends, games, etc.

Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (5)

  • Click on Steam, and from the drop-down, click on check for updates.
  • The process is smooth as it automatically searches, fetches, and installs the updates.

Once the update is done, run the game and verify if the issue is fixed.

Fix 3 – Check for the Latest Drivers for Your Controller

You might be wrong if the drivers are not an issue because there’s a connection. Broken drivers, as mentioned earlier, can cause such problems.

The drivers may start acting weird when they are outdated, or you have interrupted an update during installation. Therefore, it is always better to look for updates rather than struggle with a malfunctioning device. However, manually fetching driver updates can take time, considering the numerous steps involved. The best way to handle the issue is to use an automated driver updater.

A driver updater is an application you can use to find and finish updates for any devices you use on your PC. Advanced Driver Updater is the best available if you aren’t aware of which client to use.

It is easy to use and works in three simple steps –

  • Download, install and run the application.

  • Click on Start Scan Now. This will initiate the scanning process for outdated drivers on your PC.

Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (7)

  • Once the results are fetched, simply click on Update all to update all outdated driver at once.

Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (8)

That’s about it. Let all the processes complete, restart the PC, and your device drivers are ready! Remember that your gaming experience depends on multiple devices and their drivers. Keeping updated can do wonders!

Controller Connected But Not Working In Game – FIXED!

Implement these three easy solutions, and you will get the issue fixed. If none of these work, consider taking assistance from your hardware provider. You can only partially rule out the chances of device errors.

With that, we have reached the end of this post. We hope this post helps fix your gamepad connectivity error on Windows. Good Luck!


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Fixed - Gamepad Detected but not Working on Windows (2024)


Why is my gamepad detected but not working? ›

When your gamepad is recognized but not working, it is usually an issue related to broken drivers. If your gamepad is not working in games, make sure your computer drivers are not outdated. Windows Troubleshooter is another tool that provides solutions for fixing pc gamepads.

Why is my controller connected to my PC but not working? ›

If it is a wired controller, try connecting it to a different USB port. For a wireless controller, you need to make sure it has enough battery. If it does, try unpairing and pairing it again.

Why is my controller working on desktop but not in game? ›

When the device establishes the connection but is not working correctly, it is a trait of broken drivers. Moreover, if you use Steam or any other gaming client, the controller is detected but is not found in the game. An error might occur due to the controller's incompatibility.

Why is my Xbox controller not working even though it's connected? ›

If the controller doesn't work when connected with a USB cable, double check that the problem isn't with the cable or the port—try a different cable/port connection or connect to a different device.

How do you reset a gamepad? ›

On the back of your controller, you will find a tiny hole – the reset button is inside this hole. Use a small, unfolded paper clip (or something similar) to press and hold the reset button for at least five seconds. Your controller should now have been reset.

How to fix USB gamepad not recognized? ›

  1. Fix 1: Restart the gamepad and Windows.
  2. Fix 2: Update your drivers.
  3. Fix 3: Confirm gamepad compatibility.
  4. Fix 4: Assign the gamepad as a gaming device.
  5. Fix 5: Rebuild configuration file data from APPDATA folder.
  6. Fix 6: Change power settings from the device manager page.
Oct 18, 2022

How do I get my controller to work on my PC? ›

Open 'Bluetooth & other devices' on your PC and turn Bluetooth on. Turn your Xbox One controller on and hold the 'Pair' button down until the Xbox button starts flashing. On your PC, click 'Add Bluetooth or other device' > 'Bluetooth' > your controller's name > 'Done.

Why is my controller not responding in game? ›

The controller's battery is dead. The controller was recently paired with another device, like a different PS4 or PC. The controller is too far from your PlayStation and is no longer connected via Bluetooth®. The Micro-USB cable that connects your controller to the console is faulty or disconnected.

Why is my gamepad not working on Windows 11? ›

You can also open Settings > Bluetooth & devices and find the controller listed under the Other devices section. If it doesn't connect, inspect the cable for damage, verify it works with other devices, and try a different USB port on your system. In addition, ensure the batteries in the controller are fully charged.

Why does my Xbox controller not work on PC? ›

Remove accessories from your Xbox or PC: Some USB devices, including incompatible or defective USB cables, can interfere with wireless signals. Unplug all USB devices connected to your Xbox or PC. Restart your Xbox or PC and try connecting the controller again.

Why is my Xbox One controller flashing and not connecting to PC? ›

Try updating your controller's firmware. Sometimes, an out-of-date controller can experience issues, like flashing, so if your controller needs a firmware update, get that sorted, and then reconnect your controller to whatever device you're using it with. Contact Xbox support.

Why is my PS4 controller detected but not working? ›

If the PS4 console is recognizing the controller but it's still not working, you may need a software update. Try this: Go to Settings > System Software Update. Select Update Now, then choose Next in the update acceptance screens.

Why does Steam detect controller but doesn t work in game? ›

If your Steam Controller configuration doesn't work in a game, it may be because the game doesn't support the style of input you've chosen. Browse through community configurations for that game and see if one works. Gamepad-only input styles will only work with gamepad supported games.

Why is my USB gamepad not working? ›

Gamepad not working in PC games – Likely, your controller isn't properly configured or damaged. Connect it to another PC to test its functionality. Gamepad not in Device Manager – If your system does not recognize the gamepad, you need to unplug any other USB devices and leave the controller only.

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