Can't get Nano board to show up in Device Manager

Brand new at this and can’t even get past Step 0. Frustrating! Got some Nano boards (and other stuff, but not important now). I do know the boards have CH340 chip, so installed the drivers for those. But when I plug the board in, nothing happens in my device driver at all. The Tools > Port menu in Arduino IDE is grayed out. The only port I see in Device Manager > Ports (COM & LPT) is a USB Preloader (Android) that I assume is for an Android device I hooked up for my kids not long ago (assigned to COM3). Absolutely nothing happens when I plug in any of the five boards I got. Seems like a Windows issue, but I’m at a loss. Tried unplugging anything USB I didn’t have to have, disabled anything running in the background (that be blocking access to serial ports like firewall), etc. And yes, rebooted. Not sure where to go from here.

The boards do have one solid red LED on and another that blinks every two seconds or so when I plug them in, if that helps at all… (can’t read LED markings, magnifier is on order!) I’m running Windows 10. Any help greatly appreciated.

Don't use a charge-only USB cable, perhaps.... :-)

Do you get the "ka-bink" noise like you normally get when you plug in hardware? Any unknown devices? And yeah, definitely make sure the cable is known working for data

Does it say anything about windows not recognizing the device when you connected it? If a pop up does show up then your nano could probably be destroyed; you'd need to buy a new one.

Thanks all for the replies. No, I get no ka-blink or any notifications when I plug it in. Nothing pops up in Device Manager, absolutely nothing happens other than lights turn on on the Nano.

Interesting about the cable. I forgot to order some so I found an old one I had as part of an Amazon charger (forget what the device was now...) to use. I thought the cables were all the same. Will make sure the ones I order say they can be used for data, but that'll be a few days out at least...

There are two types of crap cables. The first is charging cables which have either no data lines at all, or have them tied to resistor dividers for the charge speed signal, so they can sometimes trick devices into charging faster.

The other type is the kind that works fine for data, but uses very thin wires internally, so you can't charge anything with them (ive seen 3.5 ohms each way!!).

That's in addition to damaged cables - these micro usb cables are shoddy and fail with alarming frequency. My friend went through a ten-pack in like half a year (the metal connector tip that goes into the micro usb receptacle starts to come loose from the rubbery plug, so it can wiggles little, and then the connection fatigues and fails. )

So, that’s what it was, the cable. Got some made for data transfer and it worked great. Thanks!