iPhone 5 unknown device driver windows7

Is anyone out there getting an ‘unknown device driver’ error when they plug in their iPhone 5 into their Windows 7 computer?

If so, here is a tip that may help:

  • Make sure you iPhone 5 is disconnected from your Windows PC
  • Open a command prompt:
    • If you are logged in as administrator:
      • Open your command prompt, click Start select Runย 
      • Type cmdย  then press Enter (this opens a command prompt window)
    • If you are not logged in as administrator
      • Click Start, and type command prompt into the search box
      • Right click and select ‘Run as administrator’ for the command promptย listing
  • Type the following at the command prompt:
    Net localgroup Administrators local service /add
    then press Enterย 
  • A message stating ‘The command completed successfully’ should appear.
  • Close the command prompt and reconnect your iPhone 5 ๐Ÿ™‚

A reader with an iPhone 5 asked me to look into this issue and these steps fixed her problem!

Also, these steps were adapted to be iPhone 5 specific, here is a link to the original source tip discussing a Nokia 5800 phone.

Best regards,


  • Peter

    Awesome – that fixed the issue for me. I couldn’t get BT pairing to work – device not recognised etc.

  • Jim

    I can’t get my iphone5 to connect wireless to window 7.anyone having this issue.

    • Hi Jim,
      Thank you for your comment. I have not encountered this issue. Perhaps another reader has already solved the same issue?

      Best regards,

      PS are you trying to wireless sync iTunes, or is it some other form of wireless acess to Windows 7 that you are looking to accomplish?

  • Nicole

    Hi JD

    I tried the above fix but didn’t work for me. when I plug in the iphone5 OS6, the computer bleeps as normal but then the message reads that the “USB Device Not recognised”
    I have reinstalled iTunes, have reinstalled the Apple mobile device drivers,
    the device shows as “Unknown Device” and the PnpID is usb\unknown.
    Any ideas would be gratefully received


    • Hi Nicole,
      Thank you for your comment. I am sorry to hear about the “USB Device Not recognised” issue. It sounds like you have already done a lot of the right things to try to fix the issue. The only two things that come to mind are to try a different USB port on your computer, and perhaps try a different USB cable. Those two things probably won’t make a difference but it may be worth a try just to verify that it is not a physical connectivity or power issue.

      Sorry to not be of more help!

      Best regards,

  • Lloyd

    I’ve been working on this all morning. Even if a few Nigerian princes have access to my machine now, I’m happy that my iPhone will at least connect to my computer. That is to say.. I have no idea what this just enabled… but thanks!

  • Betsy

    JD, I am an administrator on my PC and I rec’d the message “access denied when I tried issuing the command both ways. Any advice?
    Thanks, betsy

  • Karen

    It took me awhile to figure out how to get to a command prompt because I don’t have the exact same “run” options and “start” options, but I typed that in. It didn’t look like it did anything, but suddenly my device was recognized. Now it’s working. Thank you!

  • Kiki

    Thank you very much! It worked for me too.

  • Martin Berglund

    Thank you J.D!

    Been out in the bush for a week unable to upload all material I’ve produced. Now I can return and keep working with out worries.

    Happy New Year!

    • Excellent Martin, very glad it helped. ๐Ÿ™‚

      You’ll have to comment or email with a URL sometime if you have a link to your work!

      A very Happy New Year to you as well,

  • KLCharles

    Before you try all sorts of machinations, try this: If your iPhone 5 is plugged into a USB hub, switch it out with a USB port on your computer. Voila, Window and iTunes recognized my device instantly. This tip came directly from Apple.

  • Pam

    That was so easy..thanks. Worked like a charm!

  • elimliau

    Hi JDH,

    Your solution worked like a charm for my new iPhone 5

    Many thanks.

  • Thank you for posting about this issue. I’ve been having a lot of trouble with that.
    I have tried the prescribed steps and received the following:

    “System error 5 occurred.

    Access is denied.”

    Do you have any suggestions for this?

  • henry

    Finally a fix thank you so very much

  • David

    nice, worked like a charm

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