Computer Literate Dopers, HELP!!

I am just about to start banging my head against the wall here.

I got one of those PenCams for my PC today and it is simply refusing to function. Allow me to elaborate.

I plug the camera in to the USB port and start the computer. The computer recognizes it and asks for a driver. I cancel, and install the driver from the CD. I restart the computer and the Windows dialog says it has found the software for my new hardware and is installing it. After a few seconds, Windows loads.

I clik on the program to use my camera, and it says the camera is not attached the computer, despite the fact that Windows found it there twice. I go to my control panel and look at the Scanners/Cameras thingy and it tells me I have no camera installed. If that’s the case, what was Windows doing when it told me it had found the camera and the software for it and was installing it? How the hell do I make this work.

I am running Windows 98 on a PII 455 with 128 MB RAM, I have a Voodoo 3 card with 16 MB, if that should matter, other specs available on request, I can’t think of anything else that should matter here.


Click on settings and then control panel, double click on system in the control panel then click on the device manager tab. Do you see anything listed under unkown devices, or do you see anything with a yellow question mark or exclimation point?

Alot of time with windows 95 or 98 if you plug in something usb before you ran the install cd you have to manually assign the drivers.

If you do see something with the question mark or exclimation point right click on it and go to properties, you should see a box that says “update driver” click on this and then browse to the directory that your pen cam installed to. It should be in the root (c: drive) directory or in c:\program files then look for a folder that has the same name as the manufactuere of the pen cam (if you can’t find it rerun the install cd until you see where it will install the program, then cancel out go back to the device manager and repeat the above steps) when you find the right folder you should see the driver files pop up (as the browser will only show device driver files). Hope this helps. If you run into any problems post back I will check for it.

Since this has a factual answer, I’ll move it to General Questions for you.

Cajun Man - SDMB Moderator

Are you turning the camera itself on?

This may or may not fix it, but I know most (all?) digital camera software requires the camera to be on to connect.

A USB camera shouldn’t require a reboot, at least initially. When you plug the camera in, does Windows detect it immediately? If so, try letting Windows use its own driver, or go to the camera manufacturer’s website and get the latest driver. It’s conceivable your driver disk is screwed up in some way.

Rule of thumb for new USB devices and Windows: install the drivers/software first, reboot the PC, power on the device (if applicable), and THEN plug in the USB cable to the PC (a.k.a. hotplug). Works like a charm for me most of the time.

Here’s some advice on your current problem: Get your PC as Pencam software free as you can, including the drivers. Refer to the manf. website if there is not uninstall option. Then follow the above steps.

BTW, this isn’t an USB 2.0 device is it? If so, chances are you don’t have a USB 2.0 compliant port on your PC. You can by add-in cards relatively cheap at your local computer store.

Happy camming.