Port option greyed out


as the title suggests, I cannot select a port as it is simply greyed out. I looked for a solution but it either didn't work, talked about a different operating system, or was too confusing for a newbie like me to understand.
A quick rundown: I have an Arduino UNO, when I connect it to my PC through a physical USB port extender the port option is greyed out, straight into the same port without the extender it's greyed out, and if I plug it into the SS USB port the same thing happens. I have not installed anything apart from the Arduino coding software. In device manager I do not see any Arduino drivers installed which could be important. However, I know it's not the board as it connects to my laptop just fine and I am able to choose ports.

I am very grateful for any help as this is quite a confusing problem to face before I was even able to understand the basics of Arduino boards.

(I am brand new to Arduino so please explain everything to me as you would to a 5-year-old child.)

Do you see any new device show up in Device Manager when you plug in your Uno?

Did you use the same USB cable to connect it to the laptop as you did when connecting it to the PC?

Thank you for answering,

I am not sure if it just appeared but now it shows up as a "USB Serial" under other devices. I believe I previously checked through the Other devices section and it wasnt there.

And yes, I used the same USB cable and even tried the same USB port extender on my laptop to make sure thats not the problem, it works fine.

Great! This means the driver is not installed.

Please tell us which USB to serial adapter chip your Arduino board has. This is a black chip near the USB socket.



The chip will usually be identified by writing on the top. This might say something like "Atmel MEGA16U2" or "WCH CH340G" or "SILABS CP2102".

It is the second example and it's a bit hard to tell but I believe it says "WCH CH340G".

You can get the driver and instructions

You need to install the driver for the CH340 USB to serial adapter chip used by your Arduino board. You can install the driver for the CH340 USB to serial adapter chip used by your Arduino board by following these instructions:

  1. Open the page on the Chinese manufacturer of the CH340's website that provides the driver downloads: http://www.wch.cn/downloads/CH341SER_ZIP.html
  2. Click the button with the cloud and downward pointing arrow to download the driver.
  3. Wait for the download to finish.
  4. Unzip the downloaded CH341SER.ZIP file.
  5. Open Windows Device Manager.
  6. Connect the CH340-based board to your computer with a USB cable.
  7. You should see a new device appear under the "Other devices" section of the device tree. Double click on it.
  8. Click the Update Driver... button.
  9. Click "Browse my computer for drivers".
  10. Click the Browse... button.
  11. Select the unzipped folder of the download from the WCH website.
  12. Click the OK button.
  13. Click the Next button.

The driver should now install successfully. After that, the CH340 -based board should appear in the "Ports (COM & LPT)" section of the Windows Device Manager device tree as "USB-SERIAL CH340 (COMn)" and the board should show up under the Arduino IDE's Tools > Port menu.

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There was a minor choke-up when I was attempting to use the "Update driver" method and it wasn't able to set up the driver, but there is a very simple installation application within the zip file. It all works great now, recognises the port and Arduino receives my sketches successfully.

Thank you very much for your help, I've been trying to figure out this problem for a week now and now I can continue experimenting with my Arduino. Thanks!

I have occasionally recommended that installer with the thought that it would be an easier approach, but there was a report last week that the driver installation failed when using the installer, and I found the same occurs for me. But for both of us the direct driver installation via Device Manager worked fine. It's interesting that you had the opposite result.

Anyway, I'm very glad to hear that you are now able to get to having fun with Arduino. Enjoy!

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Pert, that did the trick. Easy as pie.
Thank you very much.

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