Is your trusted Mac throwing a tantrum? Well, you are not alone. Disabling a USB accessory is a fairly common error when your Mac is connected to multiple accessories. You need to fix this error to continue using the USB port on your Mac. Read on to find out how to fix the error that the USB accessory is disabled on your Mac.
- 1 Why am I getting an error saying that the USB accessory is disabled on my Mac?
- 2 8 Easy Fixes to Enable USB Accessories on Mac
Why am I getting an error saying that the USB accessory is disabled on my Mac?
You can use your Mac’s USB port to connect peripherals. This interface allows you to plug in game accessories, keyboards, additional storage, and more. A certain amount of power is required for the USB port to work. If there is not enough power supplied to the USB port, macOS will throw a “USB accessory disabled” error.
The underlying problem can be a failure of the USB port, port, old firmware, etc. Follow the steps below to fix the USB accessory disabling issue on your Mac.
8 Easy Fixes to Enable USB Accessories on Mac
- Disconnect and reconnect the USB port
- Check the USB port and cable
- Try using a different port
- Use a powered Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C hub
- Restart your Mac to update
- Reset SMC
- Reset PRAM and NVRAM (for Intel-based PCs)
- Contact Apple Support
1. Disconnect and reconnect the USB port
Sometimes defective accessories can be the cause. Remove and reconnect all USB accessories. If that doesn’t work, remove the accessories individually. Identify the device that is causing the problem. Disconnect the failed device and check for errors.
Each device connected via USB consumes a certain amount of power. However, some accessories require more power than others. Disconnect such devices and check for errors.
2. Check the USB port and cable
Over a period of time, lint and other debris tend to collect on the USB port. When this happens, the device connected to the port malfunctions or goes undetected. Thankfully, cleaning the port is easy. Take the cotton earphones. Soak in isopropyl alcohol or hand sanitizer. Gently swipe to clean the inside of the port. Be careful not to damage the connector.
A defective cable can also be the cause. Check the cable for damage, especially at the ends. When the cable has reached the end of its life, consider replacing it with a new cable.
3. Try using a different port
Did you get an error disabling the USB accessory even after cleaning the port? Perhaps the port is damaged. Try connecting your device to another USB port. If it works, check the port.
I’m having trouble using a device with USB 3.0 specifications that has a USB 2.0 port. This is mainly due to improper power supply. Always check your device’s USB specifications to match your Mac. Most USB 3.0 devices are backward compatible. But even they can face power problems.
4. Use a powered Thunderbolt 3 or USB-C hub
A USB hub is a great way to increase the number of ports on your Mac. USB hubs usually consume power. We recommend purchasing a USB hub with an external power supply. You can use a USB hub with an external power supply to fix an issue where USB accessories are disabled.
Are you confused about which one to buy? See Compiling the best USB-C hub for your MacBook Pro.
5. Restart your Mac to update
It’s always good to restart your Mac once in a while. Rebooting will clear the temporary memory and fix minor software bugs. Improper operating system level power management can disable USB accessories. Rebooting will fix this issue immediately.
Now you need to eliminate the possibility of software bugs. Update macOS to the latest version. Here’s how to update:
Tap Apple Logo → System Preferences → Software update → Upgrade Now..
6. Reset the SMC
The System Management Controller is a physical unit that manages important parts of your Mac. Responsible for normal functions of battery, USB accessories, power supply, and heat management. Resetting the SMC may fix an issue that disables USB accessories.
7. Reset PRAM and NVRAM (for Intel-based PCs)
PRAM stands for parameter random access memory and NVRAM stands for non-volatile random access memory. The module contains information / data about the boot disk, screen resolution, time zone, and more. If you own a Mac with Apple Silicon, this step is not suitable.
To reset PRAM or NVRAM on your Mac, follow the steps detailed in this guide.
8. Contact Apple Support
The error may be due to a hardware failure. The power supply of the USB port may be damaged. The worst scenario is when the USB port on the motherboard fails. If nothing works, contact Apple Support. Consider taking your Mac to your nearest Apple or Apple-certified service center. Repairs are covered by the warranty.
I think I was able to fix the USB accessory invalidation error. USB failures are often caused by heavy or improperly connected devices. Make sure the connected device isn’t just hanging. It puts unnecessary stress on the USB connector and increases the possibility of failure.