AFAICT this started spontaneously, nothing had been added, subtracted etc. to the system. I always kept those three items plus a printer plugged in to the ports. Yesterday I noticed the external HD wasn't being recognized and then realized all devices were not recognized.
I have tried just about every recommended "fix" I have come across. Device Manager shows all USB ports working properly. I uninstalled and reinstalled the drivers, no help. I checked the BIOS and the USB ports are enabled. I opened up the tower and all connections look fine, I sprayed the Mobo with compressed air, no change. Plug and Play in Services was set to manual so I changed it to automatic and it says it is started.
System is a desktop running XP with SP3. All virus scans are coming up clean but based on the sudden onset reason I feel this may be virus related. Or at the very least it seems like it would be a setting or something that isn't right. Do USB ports really go bad this suddenly with no indicator in Device Manager while still having power?
I'd appreciate any advice/suggestions.