An old IBM ThinkCenter with lots of USBs

I've installed ArduinoIDE on that machine on my LAB - just to have one there too beside one in my office.

I can't upload via ANY of all these ports - should it be USB 3.0 or what ?

To my knowledge, USB2 is the requirement. USB3 is known to have potential issues; on some PCs it works, on others not.

Which operating system?
Is the board recognised by the OS?
Which board / boards?
Which error messages do you get if you upload, assuming that you can select a port in the IDE.?

I'm running Windows 10 fully updated on a Lenovo thinkCenter.
The machine has a lot of 10 USB port all able to 'run' the USB-mouse.
ArduinoIDE reports I have COM1 and COM3 but no text telling something of Arduino.
I run my 3D-printer on COM3.
If I connect a Arduino UNO to the COM1 I can see the LED ON is ON and the L-LED is blinking.
If I try to opload some code via COM1 I get this error message back after some time:

Arduino: 1.8.15 (Windows 10), Board: "Arduino Uno"
Sketch uses 9368 bytes (29%) of program storage space. Maximum is 32256 bytes.
Global variables use 716 bytes (34%) of dynamic memory, leaving 1332 bytes for local variables. Maximum is 2048 bytes.
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 1 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 2 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 3 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 4 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 5 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 6 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 7 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 8 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 9 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
avrdude: stk500_recv(): programmer is not responding
avrdude: stk500_getsync() attempt 10 of 10: not in sync: resp=0x98
Problem uploading to board. See Upload – Arduino Help Center for suggestions.

This report would have more information with
"Show verbose output during compilation"
option enabled in File -> Preferences.

Same if I use COM3 !

MAYBE it's USB 1.0 because it's an elderly machine - can I check this somehow ?
I have tried the link for suggestions but with no luck - :thinking:

HELP ME !

I need you to do one thing to verify the computer's age:
Press Windows + R key. This will pop up a "Run ..." window.
Type in "devmgmt.msc", hit enter.

Device Manager will now appear.
There is a tree of devices of the computer. Find the sub-tree that says "processors".
Click open it. Tell us what the full processor name is (there might be multiple instances of the same processor -- it's the way multi-core processor appear to computers)


You can also scroll down to USB and check the USB connectors yourself. It might help by adjusting the view to show "device by connection" rather than "by type".

Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU E8400 @3.00 Ghz

Here is a screendump "device by connection":

I just installed a new USB 2.0 card and I have de-activated most of the integrated USB port on the motherboard.

The NEW USB2.0 can tell show a small window with "board infos" the OLD USSs con't show anything.

Please don't tell me the machine is to old - it runs nicely Windows 10 fully updated and I use it for backup once a week, and now I would have it for the Arduino too.

Oh, I forgot the error message I get with the new USB 2.0 is this:

Arduino: 1.8.15 (Windows Store 1.8.49.0) (Windows 10), Board: "Arduino Uno"

Sketch uses 924 bytes (2%) of program storage space. Maximum is 32256 bytes.
Global variables use 9 bytes (0%) of dynamic memory, leaving 2039 bytes for local variables. Maximum is 2048 bytes.

An error occurred while uploading the sketch
avrdude: ser_open(): can't set com-state for "\.\COM11"

This report would have more information with
"Show verbose output during compilation"
option enabled in File -> Preferences.

Can we see the rest of the device manager to the bottom, please?

I don't think the machine hardware itself is the issue.
USB 1.0 and 2.0 are known to work well so you should be able to use those on the motherboard with no real issues.

Do you get the new hardware sound when you plug something into the USB ports ?
Also do you have the "SHOW HIDDEN DEVICES" ticked in device manager as some versions of win 10 hide COM & LPT ports hardware section ?

That you can run a 3d printer with no issues would be a good indicator that the machine is fine.
COM 1 and COM 2 are usually reserved for windows own use and for machines that support proper RS232 ports.

Arduinos usually show up anywhere from COM 3 upwards but normally will NOT use an existing port that is in use such as your 3d printer on COM 3 so may show as anything above that.

I also see you are using the "windows store" version of the IDE.
This too can on some machines cause its own issues and we would normally recommend using the full IDE rather than that version as it often also fixes some minor issues.

If it is a CLONE Arduino you may also need extra drivers that are NOT included with the IDE.
A forum search for CH340 or CP2102 would help you there.

Ofcause you can ... here the first item is missing - that's just the E8400:

Hope this helps !

OK, I'll try download the IDE from Arduino.org (?) - I think it is.

Yeah, it's a clone, but I have it working nicely on another machine.

Forum CH340 and CP2102 ... I'll try a peek in there ... maybe it's too technical for me :thinking:

THX for the advices !

Get rid of the Windows Store App
Download it here:
Software | Arduino

Made no difference :thinking:

As @Ballscrewbob asked, do you get the correct sound played when you plug your clone board in?

I've got issues with serial->USB converters that use the CH340 chip. My Win10 setup gets "confused/annoyed/sulks" with the COM ports when I have more than one CH340 adapter plugged in at once.

Does it work if you unplug your 3D printer?

I'll have to install speakers/headphones to check that ... I'm searching for some in my LAB.

What is a "CH340 adapter" ... do I have one in my machine ?

No ifference if I unplug the 3D-printer OR if I use the USB port the 3D-printer was using.

Sorry for the confusion, the CH340 adapter is a serial->USB converter. Some of the clone Arduino boards have one fitted to provide communication with the Arduino IDE via the USB cable.

If you can't hear sound, then do you see an new COM port appear in your device manager when you plug in your Arduino clone? I think it appears under Ports (COM & LPT). If it doesn't appear, then look at the list in Device Manager. Does any new entry appear anywhere in the list? Sometimes it says "Unknown Device" or something like that.

The significant difference is that Windows Store versions install the apps in a weird location (often under the user) and sometimes are not getting the privilege to perform lower-level operations (which usually require admin previlege)
Also the windows store drivers are
buggy. I never have a great experience with any windows store app i had encountered -- even those from Microsoft themselves.

That's a dinosaur (ancient) computer.
Treat it gently.

There need to be some real curve-balls on the hardware for things to not work.
And because it's a dinosaur computer, it's built by IBM rather than Lenovo, which mean that there should be no curve-balls.

If he had purchased even a cheap Pro Micro clone (of the clone of the Arduino Micro) or a Arduino Leonardo clone, he will likely get away with it because how the ATMega32U4 have built-in USB capability, eliminating the fussy USB-to-serial conversion.

???? I think this problem seems more and more spooky - what is a possible path to a solution ... except buying another machine ?

The machine is good for what I use it for - backup - and I can manage it from my office by remote desktop and because it's placed in my LAB anyway, I want to use it for my new hobby with these Arduinos and clones of them - I have used my office until now, but it's developed into a mess so I HAVE to clean up and move that hobby to the LAB ... where all my tools are anyway.

I would very much appreciate if some here could up with a solution :wink:

I'm not saying your machine is bad. I am saying that your machine is probably good, and that the cheap Arduino clone is the issue.

However you said that "just to have one there too beside one in my office" implies that your Arduino clone had worked before.

What is the clone? (uno, leonardo, mega, etc)

If this is the case then it might be the fact that the hardware is too old to support it (some old computers, especially those before the Core processors and the first and second Core processors used 3rd party USB drivers that ... does not handle everything cleanly)

Assume that you indeed tried all the USB ports (those native to the motherboard and those from AICs), you might get away with it by getting a good USB AIC.
But the problem is because your computer is old they are likely PCI slots rather than the (now standard) PCIe slots and ..


If you want to use hardware ICSP every time you flash a new sketch, you can get a dedicated USB-ICSP adapter (or use a working arduino and flash the arduino icsp).
Your old computer likely have a physical COM port. No?

You might be able to hook the arduino up to the physical COM port, but beware because the RS232 runs on 12V you need voltage shifters (among other things). But you need to do some "hacking" to bring out the pins.

Edit: the TX/RX pins on the Arduino board is the same TX/RX pin used to program the chip.


Perhaps one reason the Arduino Uno with AtMega328p is the first board is because Arduino started early, and early on there's no fancy USB tricks and instead physical COM ports are used.
Like this ArduinoBoardSerial

My NEW USB 2.00 card has COMs nummered fra 10-15.
When I connect/disconnect a Arduino UNO board to/from the USB cable - yeah I can see an extra port appearing/disappearing under Ports(COM & LPT) - it's named "RAMPS (COM??)" - ?? differs from UBS to USB-outlet.

The same behavier on all the USBs on the motherboard too !

HELP !!!!!

Show your device manager before and after you plug in the Arduino

That sounds reasonable. The main thing is that you are seeing a change when you plug in your board. When you plug in your board, Device Manager says it's named RAMPS (COM12) - for example - then you should be able to talk to your board via the Arduino IDE. In the IDE, change the port number via the menu Tools->Port so that COM12 (or whichever one your Device Manager says) is selected.