Error: Code 12 - This device cannot find enough free resources that it can use. If you want to use this device, you will need to disable one of the other devices on this system.

How to fix the Device Manager Error 12 Code 12

This article features Error Code 12, also known as Code 12 and its description is This device cannot find enough free resources that it can use. If you want to use this device, you will need to disable one of the other devices on this system.

About Device Manager

Each device you connect to your computer has a compatible driver to help you run processes that utilize that component. You will find a list of all devices within the computer in the Device Manager's hardware device properties. When something is wrong with these components, you will see indicators on that list. These indicators will give you an idea whether it is a driver issue, a conflict with system resource or other devices. You may see an exclamation point, a question mark or a down arrow on the list.

Device Manager errors come with error messages that describe the situation you are having with your computer hardware. Known as hardware error codes, these tell you exactly which part of the computer is having an issue. When you come across Device Manager error codes, you can correct the problem by making changes in the Device Manager section.

The Device Manager window and its contents are similar in all Windows version. To view status of components in Device Manager, you can simply search for the term "Device Manager" or run the process "devmgmt.msc".

Definitions (Beta)

Here we list some definitions for the words contained in your error, in an attempt to help you understand your problem. This is a work in progress, so sometimes we might define the word incorrectly, so feel free to skip this section!

  • Device - Electronic devices: computers, smartphones, tablets, electronic hardware and platforms.
  • Find - This tag has multiple meanings
  • Free - free is a function to deallocate memory obtained from malloc and other functions in C
  • Resources - Assets like memory, disk space, CPU power or alike necessary for effective operation or physical files like images, configuration files or other to provide some externalized enrichment to an application.
  • System - System may refer to a set of interdependent components; Low level infrastructure like the operating system from a high language point of view or an object or function for accessing the previous

Symptoms of Code 12 - Code 12

As previously discussed, you will see indicators on the Device Manager window when you are experiencing problems with it. The problematic device might have a red X mark, an exclamation point or a question mark or a down arrow on it depending on what case you are facing.

An exclamation point denotes your computer detects a device but doesn't recognize it but if you see a question mark with an exclamation point, there may be conflicts between two devices connected to your computer. A red X mark means that your operating system cannot find the device, it might have been disabled or needs to be reconnected or rediscovered by your computer. A down arrow means a device is temporarily disabled.

Other than icon indicators on Device Manager, you may also receive errors that will tell you the symptoms your computer is displaying.

Fix Code 12 (Error Error 12)
(For illustrative purposes only)

Causes of Code 12 - Error 12

Regardless of the kind of Device Manager error you are getting, these errors are normally caused by the following:

  • Recent changes made in the system such as installation of a new program or hardware
  • Registry changes due to other error troubleshooting
  • Updates that your computer automatically installed
  • Virus infection that targets Device Manager settings
  • Not enough memory
  • Defective hardware due to normal device wear and tear

Repair Methods

There is no need to be afraid of receiving a Device Manager error. Device Manager errors are tools that help us properly identifying which component or software you need to troubleshoot.

If a repair method works for you, please click the upvote button to the left of the answer, this will let other users know which repair method is currently working the best.

Please note: Neither nor it's writers claim responsibility for the results of the actions taken from employing any of the repair methods listed on this page - you complete these steps at your own risk.

up vote 2 down vote accepted
You may also go back to the original driver your computer came with. To do that:
  • On Device Manager, find the problematic driver.
  • Right click the device and click Properties.
  • When you see the Properties window, click the Driver tab.
  • You will see the Roll Back Driver button, click that.
  • Confirm the rollback by clicking Yes when you see a question that says "Are you sure you would like to roll back to the previously installed driver software?"
  • Restart your computer after this.

It is the simplest single step you perform to correct problems with your device. Whenever you get a Device Manager error, first thing you would want to do is to restart your computer and let your computer go back to previous setup without reinstalling or restoring your OS.

Also, keep it a habit to turn your computer off after use. It's an easy enough task to do and very helpful in maintaining proper system operations. Leaving your computer on a sleep or hibernate mode can shorten the life of your computer anyway, so, again, make it a point to shut down your computer after every usage.

Changes done to your computer can mess up your driver. If that happens, you can either reinstall your driver or update it. To do that, you can do the following.
  • If you received a Device Manager error code, take note of the description so you can pinpoint the driver or the component that is causing the error
  • Launch device manager by either searching for Device Manager or running "devmgmt.msc"
  • Find the driver on the list and right click on it
  • Click Uninstall in case you want to reinstall the driver, or Update Driver Software if you are trying to update it.
  • You will see a confirmation window, make sure the Delete driver software item is unchecked.
  • Click ok then reboot your computer.

You may alternately do this:

  • You may manually download the driver from the manufacturer.
  • Run it to replace the current driver you are using.
  • Once done, let your computer reboot.
For Window 7
  • Click Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools
  • Click System Restore and then click Next.
  • Choose your restore point when you know your computer is doing fine
  • Keep clicking Next and the click Finish
  • It will take time so be patient, wait for the operation to completely stop
For Windows 8, 8.1 or 10
  • Right-click the Start button, then click System.
  • Once in System window, click System and Security.
  • Tap System and on the left side, click System protection.
  • Click System Restore, follow the instruction to select your restore point and then click Next until you see the Finish button.
  • Wait for the restore process to finish.
You may do the following to install Windows Updates:
  • Click Start, Search for Update.
  • You will see Windows Update as one of the listed search items, click it.
  • This will automatically run a search for the most recent updates you should have. You may want to check the descriptions of the updates and install only those that are compatible with your system.
Peripherals may also cause issues on your computer. So, to eliminate the errors caused by these, you can simply unplug the device from your computer. Reboot your computer to help it remember your changes.
Other languages:

Wie beheben Fehler 12 (Code 12) - Dieses Gerät kann nicht genügend freie Ressourcen finden, die es verwenden kann. Wenn Sie dieses Gerät verwenden möchten, müssen Sie eines der anderen Geräte auf diesem System deaktivieren.
Come fissare Errore 12 (Codice 12) - Questo dispositivo non riesce a trovare abbastanza risorse gratuite da poter utilizzare. Se desideri utilizzare questo dispositivo, dovrai disabilitare uno degli altri dispositivi su questo sistema.
Hoe maak je Fout 12 (Code 12) - Dit apparaat kan niet genoeg vrije bronnen vinden die het kan gebruiken. Als u dit apparaat wilt gebruiken, moet u een van de andere apparaten op dit systeem uitschakelen.
Comment réparer Erreur 12 (Code 12) - Cet appareil ne trouve pas suffisamment de ressources libres qu'il peut utiliser. Si vous souhaitez utiliser cet appareil, vous devrez désactiver l'un des autres appareils de ce système.
어떻게 고치는 지 오류 12 (코드 12) - 이 장치는 사용할 수 있는 충분한 여유 리소스를 찾을 수 없습니다. 이 장치를 사용하려면 이 시스템의 다른 장치 중 하나를 비활성화해야 합니다.
Como corrigir o Erro 12 (Código 12) - Este dispositivo não consegue encontrar recursos livres suficientes para usar. Se você quiser usar este dispositivo, você precisará desativar um dos outros dispositivos neste sistema.
Hur man åtgärdar Fel 12 (Kod 12) - Den här enheten kan inte hitta tillräckligt med gratis resurser som den kan använda. Om du vill använda den här enheten måste du inaktivera en av de andra enheterna på detta system.
Как исправить Ошибка 12 (Код 12) - Это устройство не может найти достаточно свободных ресурсов, которые можно использовать. Если вы хотите использовать это устройство, вам необходимо отключить одно из других устройств в этой системе.
Jak naprawić Błąd 12 (Kod 12) - To urządzenie nie może znaleźć wystarczającej liczby bezpłatnych zasobów, z których może korzystać. Jeśli chcesz korzystać z tego urządzenia, musisz wyłączyć jedno z pozostałych urządzeń w tym systemie.
Cómo arreglar Error 12 (Código 12) - Este dispositivo no puede encontrar suficientes recursos gratuitos que pueda usar. Si desea utilizar este dispositivo, deberá desactivar uno de los otros dispositivos de este sistema.

The Author About The Author: Phil Hart has been a Microsoft Community Contributor since 2010. With a current point score over 100,000, they've contributed more than 3000 answers in the Microsoft Support forums and have created almost 200 new help articles in the Technet Wiki.

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06/01/24 11:30 : A Windows 10 user voted that repair method 3 worked for them.

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Article ID: ACX01643EN

Applies To: Windows 10, Windows 8.1, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP, Windows 2000

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Troubleshooting 100% Disk Usage:

A very common issue among Windows users is the disk usage in the Task Manager always shows 100%. Troubleshoot the cause of this spike in disk usage by going through the Processes tab in the Task Manager.

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