USB Accessories Disabled? – Let’s Fix It Easily Now


By Jack Lin

Update on

USB accessories disabled
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USB accessories disabled. Unplug the accessory using too much power to re-enable USB devices“.

Do you notice the above error when you plug a USB device into your Mac? If so, the plugged device will not work as expected. It can happen with devices like external hard drives, cameras, iPhones, Keyboard, etc.

One of the annoying things associated with this error is that it can pop up even after unplugging the device. But the good news is that we explain how to fix this error with easy steps.

So, let’s continue reading to learn how to fix the “USB accessories disabled” error. We have seven solutions listed below.

USB accessories disabled

01. Reduce the number of bus-powered devices on the faulty computer

Thanks to modern-day technology, there is no shortage of external devices we use today. These devices are often connected to computers to get power.

Usually, we tend to connect multiple bus-powered devices to the computer every day. If you have added many devices to the computer, your Mac will have to power them.

Various errors can appear when those devices take too much power from the Mac. So, to fix this issue, you should simply reduce the number of bus-powered devices connected to the Mac.

If you want to connect those devices, be sure to charge them before connecting. If not, switch them to self-powered mode so they will not acquire any power from the Mac. Once you have done that, “USB accessories disabled” may be gone.

02. Use a different USB port to connect the device

Different versions of USB ports offer different power outputs. For instance, when it comes to USB 3 ports, they offer 900mA of power. However, USB 2 ports offer only 500mA.

With a USB 3 cable, your device can use up to 900mA if it is USB 3.0. However, if the same device is connected to a USB 2 port, it doesn’t get more than 500mA.

It is possible to check the USB port and USB power used by the devices you connect. You can use the System Information to get it done.

To get it done, you should follow the steps below.

  • First, click on the Apple menu icon.
  • Then, you should choose “About This Mac.”
  • After that, please go to the option called “System Report.”
  • Then, from the sidebar, view the information about the USB accessories.
  • After selecting a USB port of the MacBook or iMac, you can view all the information. You can simply check the amount of power required by each USB device connected to the computer. Mentioned below are the aspects you should check in the system information.
    • Current Available – This is the default power offered through the respective USB port.
    • Current Required – This is the amount of power needed by the USB device which is connected.
Use a different USB port to connect the device

03. Use a different cable to connect the device

In certain cases, the USB accessories can get disabled due to an error associated with the USB cable.

This can often happen with a nongenuine or damaged USB cable. If the USB cable is not certified or broken/damaged, the “USB accessories disabled” error can appear.

So, using a different USB cable is the best way to overcome this issue. Make sure that you use a genuine USB cable provided by the manufacturer to get it done.

04. Reset the System Management Controller (SMC)

SMC (which is the shortened form of System Management Controller) is responsible for the physical operation of the Mac.

For instance, batter management and USB accessories are managed through this aspect.

If you reset SMC, you can expect to resolve this issue. For many individuals, resetting SMC is considered one of the most effective ways.

If the USB accessories are disabled on your Mac, this should be tried before moving to other methods. You should also remember that the steps to reset SMC vary depending on your model.

After resetting the SMC, you should restart the Mac as well. Then, plug in the USB device once again. If the trick has worked, the USB accessory should be working now. However, if the “USB accessories disabled” error persists, you should try the other methods.

05. Reset Mac’s PRAM/NVRAM

PRAM is the shortened form of Parameter Random Access Memory. And NVRAM is the shortened form of Non-Volatile Random Access Memory. Both aspects become mandatory when storing system settings on a Mac system.

For instance, they become useful in handling sound volume, display resolution, time zone, startup disk selection, etc. So, by resetting both PRAM and NVRAM, you can expect to fix this issue.

With that said, just follow up and reset your PRAM and NVRAM.

  • As the first step, you should press and hold the Command key, Option key, R key, and P keys. This should be done when you turn on the Mac.
  • Make sure you hold those keys for about 20 seconds so the Mac will restart automatically.
  • Once you have done that, you should release all those keys.
Reset Mac's PRAM/NVRAM

After resetting the PRAM and NVRAM, the settings on your Mac will be completely refreshed. As a result, “USB accessories disabled” may have been gone. For many users, this method should work like a charm.

Once the settings are completely refreshed, the power consumption related to the USB ports will be resolved. However, if this method doesn’t work, you will also have to go to the other methods.

06. Perform a software update on your Mac

Some external devices connected to your computer may not be compatible with the OS. As a result of the incompatible OS, the “USB accessories disabled” issue can trigger at some point or another.

Having an outdated OS can lead to other minor to serious issues about the system. So, the best approach is to update the macOS on your computer to the most recent version.

Please follow up to get a system update.

  • First, please go to the Apple menu.
  • Then please launch the option called “System Preference.”
  • Under System Preferences, you will have to choose the option called “Software Update.”
  • If there is a new update, you can see it there. You can install the latest update from there.
Perform a software update on your Mac

As a result of the system update, you can see a performance boost in the computer. Also, your “USB accessories disabled” issue should be gone now.

However, a system update may not do the trick for some users. If you fall into that category, move to the next step (our last remedy).

07. Visit Apple Store to get the issue repaired

If none of the above methods have fixed the issue, you should rely on the last resort. In this case, please contact the Apple Store and make an appointment to repair the issue. If you have tried all of the above steps, there is nothing more to do from your end.

So, the problem should be handled by a professional. If your device is still under warranty, you must never try to repair its hardware components.

If you don’t know what you are doing, you can end up causing more harm than good. All you need is to book an appointment and take your Mac.

Mentioned below are the steps to do that.

  • First, you should visit the Apple Support website. You can find it on the website.
  • Now, you should choose the type of device on which the issue has occurred.
  • Pick a suitable topic that relates to your problem.
  • Then, click on the option called “Bring in for Repair.”
  • You will be directed to a page where you have to enter the Apple ID and password. Provide the details carefully.
  • Next, you should select the most appropriate location.

That’s it. Once again, don’t try to repair the internal hardware components of the Mac if you are not an expert. Also, it may void the warranty.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Q: How can I identify if a USB accessory is compatible with my device? A: Check the specifications and compatibility information provided by the manufacturer of both the accessory and your device. Alternatively, you can consult the device’s user manual or contact customer support for assistance.
  2. Q: What should I do if my USB accessory is still not working after troubleshooting? A: If the problem persists after following the troubleshooting steps, consider reaching out to the manufacturer’s customer support for further assistance. They may provide specific solutions or suggest repair or replacement options.
  3. Q: Can a faulty USB port cause issues with multiple accessories? A: Yes, a faulty USB port can affect the functionality of multiple accessories. If you experience problems with multiple USB accessories on the same port, it’s advisable to get the port checked or repaired.
  4. Q: Why does my USB accessory work on one device but not on another? A: This discrepancy can occur due to compatibility issues between the accessory and the device. Different devices may have varying specifications or operating system requirements that can affect accessory compatibility.
  5. Q: Are there any software programs available to help diagnose USB accessory issues? A: Yes, there are various software programs available that can help diagnose and resolve USB accessory issues. Some examples include USB analyzer tools and device manager utilities provided by the operating system.


USB accessories offer convenience and enhance the functionality of our devices. However, they may encounter issues that can disable or hinder their performance. By following the troubleshooting steps outlined in this article, you can resolve common USB accessory problems and enjoy seamless connectivity with your devices.


10 years of experience in information and computer technology. Passionate about electronic devices, smartphones, computers, and modern technology.