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How to fix the USB ports on the Dell Thunderbolt TB16 Docking Station

Steve K.

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Recently I got a new Docking Station from Dell (Thunderbolt Dock TB16) to use with my Razer Blade 14 Laptop. Up until now, I had just one monitor, so I didn't need a docking station. That is until I got a 2nd monitor.

Razer, as you know, is far from being a "standard" laptop. However, its Thunderbolt port follows all the standards (assumption), so my hope was the Dell TB16 would just work. And it did... for Video and Network. USB, however, was dead on the Docking station. None of my USB devices would work when plugging into the TB16 - Webcam, USB Mouse, Headset, etc..  Plugging directly into my laptop, however, everything worked just great.

Scanning the internet, it appears this is a fairly common issue with the TB16 Docking Station. Fortunately for me, I was able to fix the problem very quickly by grabbing a single driver, off of the Dell support site.

http://www.dell.com/support/home/us/en/19/product-support/product/dell-thunderbolt-dock-tb16/drivers?os=wt64a

The update you want to grab is the September 12th, 2017 (or later) ASMedia USB Extended Host Controller Driver.

tb16-usb-fix.jpg.92043913208531394a27351b361d2853.jpg

Here's the description of the download from its details page:

Quote

This package provides the driver for the ASMedia USB3 Host Controller and is supported on XPS Notebook, Dell S&P, Latitude, Precision and Tablet running Windows 7/Windows 8.1/Windows 10.

Once I installed the ASMedia Controller, poof - All USB ports on my dock were working flawlessly! I also noticed the following app in the Icon Tray also after the install.

59d2dbb39c413_thunderboltsoftwareasmedia.jpg.4aaefcaa2ba61cf8764b208b1f851087.jpg

And here it is listed as installed on my Windows 10 settings under Apps & Features. 

asmedia-usb-installed-windows-10.jpg.bf5a0889cb88474071244442558cb46f.jpg

To be clear, your mileage may vary on this fix. I'm going to guess however that if it worked on my edge-case Razer, it will probably work on your system also.

Article Update: 

I got a great question below from Randy in the comments. His question was "What how were my monitors connected to my Docking station?" So - here's my setup:

Great question Randy. My setup looks like this:

  1. TB16 Docking Station - Mini Display Port OUT to Monitor 1 DisplayPort IN  - Yes, I have a Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable.
  2. Monitor 1 - DisplayPort OUT to Monitor 2 DisplayPort IN - Yes, my monitors are daisy-changed together.

My setup works just great since I have monitors with DisplayPort In/Out. Not something most Monitors support, however, shouldn't be an issue since the Dell TB16 Dock supports HDMI, DisplayPort, and Mini-DisplayPort.

 

 



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Great question Randy. My setup looks like this:

  1. TB16 Docking Station - Mini Display Port OUT to Monitor 1 DisplayPort IN (Yes, I have a Mini DisplayPort to DisplayPort cable)
  2. Monitor 1 - DisplayPort OUT to Monitor 2 DisplayPort IN

Obviously, my setup is unusual in that I'm daisy chaining my monitors together. Most monitors don't have IN/OUT for DisplayPort. That said, the Dell TB16 Dock supports Mini-DisplayPort, DisplayPort, and HDMI. Being that Mini DisplayPort is just a miniature version of DisplayPort, my setup works flawlessly.

Hope that helps you out!

-Steve

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I just acquired a Precision 5510 & TB16.  When I did a system detect for updated drivers, the ASMedia Controller driver you mention was picked up and installed from day 1 and the device must be restarted with a reboot of the 5510.  All of the drivers are at the latest levels per the system detect app.

I found all of the USB controllers had the "Power Management - Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power option enabled."   I am all for saving power but the option is still effectively: "turn off this device and allow nothing to awaken it, ever, under any circumstance short of reboot."   (For the life of me I can't understand why this option is still inoperable in Windows - it's been an issue for as long as USB has existed.)

I've also modified the BIOS settings related to the TB16 and enabled all options.

What the Dell system detect missed was need to download the Realtek USB GBE Ethernet Controller Driver, which I just installed today.   Fingers cross that this is the missing link...

 

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On 12/27/2017 at 8:09 AM, Guest Jack H. said:

I found all of the USB controllers had the "Power Management - Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power option enabled."   I am all for saving power but the option is still effectively: "turn off this device and allow nothing to awaken it, ever, under any circumstance short of reboot."   (For the life of me I can't understand why this option is still inoperable in Windows - it's been an issue for as long as USB has existed.)

I've also modified the BIOS settings related to the TB16 and enabled all options.

What the Dell system detect missed was need to download the Realtek USB GBE Ethernet Controller Driver, which I just installed today.   Fingers cross that this is the missing link...

 

2

Awesome additions to the article Jack. Thank you for the feedback. Just checked my USB settings under Power Management and made the updates. Thank you!

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Guest nivS1978

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Every time I boot my PC, the TB16 is not working. If I disconnect the USB-C and then power from the TB16 and connect power again, and at last the USB-C cable, Windows now detects the dock and everything works. If I reboot the PC I have to do it again. Anyone experienced this and found a solution?

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On 3/22/2018 at 2:16 AM, Guest nivS1978 said:

Every time I boot my PC, the TB16 is not working.

Have you updated all your drivers?

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