How to Solve PL2303 Driver Not working issue on Windows 11

The PL-2303 is a serial adapter port that establishes a connection between RS-232 and USB on our Windows devices. For example, when you connect a printer to your device, the PL2303 monitors the function of the drivers involved. But, what if this PL2303 driver starts not working and you are stuck with an error message – “Please install the corresponding PL-2303?”

Well, in this post, we will discuss the reasons that may cause this issue and the six workarounds that should resolve this driver issue on Windows 11 PC. Let’s explore the reasons causing it and the solutions in detail. 

PL2303 Driver Not Working

What causes the PL-2303 Driver issue on Windows?

This driver issue mostly occurs when your system meets one or a combination of the following issues –

  • Pending Windows updates
  • The existing Ports driver has been corrupted somehow
  • You have recently installed an incompatible Port driver

Now that you know what may cause this “Please install the corresponding PL-2303” issue on Windows, read and apply the six workarounds discussed in this post. 

Fix PL2303 Driver Not Working in Windows 11

If the PL2303 driver is not working on your Windows 11 PC, go through the below set of solutions and apply them one after another. I hope this error resolves after you apply these fixes –

1] Update the COM & LPT driver

This error mostly occurs when you are using an incompatible version of the COM & LPT driver. There is a possibility of the driver being corrupted or outdated. In order to fix this error, you must find and update the COM & LPT driver on your Windows PC. Here’s how to perform this task –

  • Right-click on the Windows icon and select Device Manager
  • Locate the Ports (COM & LPT) section and click the “>” button left of it. 
  • When this category expands, right-click on the available driver and select Update driver

Update COM3 Ports under Device Manager

  • On the subsequent screen, go for – “Search automatically for drivers“.
  • The system will check for pending updates and download/install the same. In case, the system doesn’t find any pending update for Ports, this will suggest looking for the same over Windows Update.

Well, go to Settings > Windows Update > Advanced options > Optional updates (under Additional options). From here, you can download and install all pending updates on your computer. After this is over, repeat the above steps for all other drivers present inside “Ports (COM & LPT)”.

Now that you have updated all your drivers inside Ports, close Device Manager and restart your PC. From the next login, you must be able to perform the operations that were earlier failing on the PL2303 driver not working issue. 

Pro tip: DriverFix is a great tool that you may install to automatically detect problems within your device drivers, and repair them. If you don’t want to go ahead and apply the below tricks, go for this PC repair tool. 

2] Reinstall the PL-2303 Driver

If there isn’t any update available for the ports driver, you may try uninstalling and then reinstalling the PL2303 driver. Follow the below instructions to go ahead with this process –

  • Firstly, attach any USB device to one of your device’s ports. 
  • Type Device Manager in the Search box and hit Enter to launch the same. 
  • Locate the Ports (COM & LPT) and click to view the drivers inside. 
  • Right-click on the available driver, and select “Uninstall device“.

Uninstall Ports COM & LPT

  • A confirmation window will appear next, click Uninstall again to confirm removing the Ports driver. 

Confirm uninstalling Ports from your device

  • Go to the toolbar and click the Scan for hardware changes button. 

Scan for hardware changes on Windows 11 - PL2303 Driver Not Working

Close Device Manager and restart your Windows. From the next login, you might not receive the same error code again. 

3] Install a compatible Ports driver

If you are still receiving the PL2303 driver not working issue, you better download it online and install it on your PC. Here’s how to perform this task –

  • Open your default web browser, and search for PL2303 over that. 
  • You will find the Prolific’s official website appearing on top.
  • Click on that and download the latest version of “PL-2303” driver from there. 
  • Open File Explorer and navigate to the folder containing the setup file.
  • Right-click on the Zip folder, and select Extract all.
  • Open the extracted folder next, and double-click on the setup file. 
  • The UAC window will prompt next, hit Yes to authorize installing this driver. 
  • Wait for the PL23XX-M_LogoDriver_Setup_v401_20220225 file to install successfully. 

After the installation completes, restart your PC, and check if the PL2303 not working issue resolves afterward. 

4] Rollback Ports (COM & LPT)

If you have recently updated some of your device drivers and this error is occurring next, you must have downloaded and installed an incompatible driver. To solve this, you must find and roll back the recently upgraded drivers on your system. Here’s how to perform this task –

Note: This fix is applicable only when you have recently updated your device driver. If you haven’t, skip to the next solution. 

  • Press Win & X to launch the Power Menu.
  • From the list, select Device Manager.
  • Scroll down to Ports (COM & LPT) and click “>” to expand this section. 
  • Right-click on the “Standard Serial over Bluetooth link (COM3)”, and select Properties
  • Go to the Driver tab and click the Roll Back Driver option.
  • Repeat the same steps for the COM4 driver as well. 

After you roll back all the recently updated drivers, restart your Windows PC. 

5] Perform a system restore

The PL2303 driver not working issue must have been resolved by now. If not, this must be due to problems within the device ports. However, before you proceed ahead and replace the COM port, we suggest performing a system restore on your Windows PC.  

Using a system restore point will revert back your device to its earlier state when everything was functioning well. In case you don’t have a backup point on your computer, you may perform a clean installation of Windows

6] Change Connecting Cable or COM Port

Assuming you are still facing the same PL2303 driver not working issue on your computer, this must be happening due to the following two reasons –

  • You are using a damaged cable to connect your USB device
  • Or, the device’s port has damaged itself. 

For the first issue, you may try using a different USB cable and check if the problem resolves this way. To confirm a bad COM port, you may use the below trick – 

  • Go to the Taskbar and type Device Manager in the Search box.
  • From the list, click on the best-matched result.
  • Reach out to the Ports (COM & LPT) section and expand it.
  • Right-click on the “Standard Serial over Bluetooth link (COM3)”, and select Properties.
  • Go to the Port Settings tab and click on the Advanced button. 

Click Advanced button under Port Settings

  • Use the drop-down menu next to COM Port Number and change it to something, not in use. For example – COM9, COM10, COM11, etc. 
  • Click OK to confirm the recent changes and restart your PC. 

Change COM Port Number - PL2303 Driver Not Working

Sign back into your device again and check if the PL2303 driver not working issue resolves now. 

Tip: If you are facing update, activation, or driver issues on your Windows PC, try RESTORO PC Repair Tool. This software will scan your device for potential issues and resolve them automatically.

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