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How to Identify an Unknown Device in Device Manager

Summary: This article contains information about steps for identifying unknown devices in Windows Device Manager.

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Article Content


Windows Device Manager has a Yellow Exclamation mark on the device.

Windows has a missing or corrupt device driver.

Unknown Device in Device Manager

Note: Before trying to identify an Unknown Device in Device Manager, ensure that all Windows Updates are current.

Update Windows Defender (or your third-party security software) to ensure that your security is current (Windows Update may not run if security for the system is out of date).

If Windows Device Manager is showing an "Unknown Device," after Windows Update has been done. The following steps can help identify the Device to install the correct driver.

  1. Open Device Manager, press the Windows logo key, and the R key simultaneously. This should open a Run Box (Figure 1).
    Windows Run Box with devmgmt.msc Command
    Figure 1
  2. Type devmgmt.msc and click OK or press Enter.
  3. Device Manager opens (Figure 2).
    Windows Device Manager
    Figure 2
  4. Right click on the "Unknown Device" and select Properties (Figure 3).
    Windows Device Manager, Other Device, Unknown Device
    Figure 3
  5. Select the Details tab. In the drop-down box under property, select Hardware Ids (Figure 4).
    Note: The below screenshot is an example of information that can be displayed for an Unknown Device.
    Example for Unknown Device, Ven and DEV Information
    Figure 4
  6. The top line should list something like: PCI\VEN_8086&DEV_1916
  7. The numbers in RED are the Vendor ID, and the numbers in Green is the Device ID.
    Vendor ID = 8086
    Device ID = 1916
    Note: If the information in the top line is not similar to what is shown. You can search on Google for what is listed.
  8. You can go to the following sites to search for the Vendor and Device.
  9. Once you find the Vendor and Device.
    For example, 8086 and 1916 is the Intel Video driver.
    You can then download the driver from and resolve the "Unknown Device."

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Article Properties

Affected Product

Desktops & All-in-Ones, Laptops, Workstations

Last Published Date

10 Jan 2024



Article Type

How To