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Solution: Nexus 4 Not Recognized by PC, Only Charging

April 24th, 2013 by

The LG Nexus 4 has been a massive hit for Google, thanks to its low pricing and solid hardware specifications. However, the phone has some battery draining issues such as the msm_hsic_wakelock wake-lock issue, which doesn’t release the phone to go into deep sleep and the Mediaserver issue, which is triggered when Google Music sync is turned on.

The latest issue to be added to the list is a rather strange one, which is causing USB compatibility problems with Windows for some users and is not letting the Nexus 4 to be recognized by PC.

nexus 4 not recognized by pc windows only charging

Unlike other issues, this is not an universal bug and is only appearing for a small part of users who’ve experimented with custom kernels.

What does it do?

The bug makes the Nexus 4 to not be recognized by PC on Windows. However, the phone can still receive charge from USB.

Probable Causes for Nexus 4 Not Recognized by PC on Windows 7

The problem with this bug is that it’s not widely known and so, there is no proper solution for it on the internet.

Cause #1: Fast Charge

From my experience, the most probable cause which triggers this bug is fast charge. If you’ve ever had turned this option on for a custom kernel, turn it off again by using an app such as Trickster Mod.

From my personal experience, disabling fast charge is going to do very little help in solving this problem and your Nexus 4 might still not be recognized by PC. Here’s what I did to solve it for ever:


After trying out several possible solutions, flashing Harsh’s Kernel on my Nexus 4 finally solved this problem for me. You can download it from XDA and flash it on your phone:

Note: Flashing a custom kernel requires your phone’s boot-loader to be unlocked and a custom recovery to be installed. Also, switching to another kernel might again break your phone’s USB compatibility with Windows.

[Guide] Ultimate Nexus 4 Root Guide (Great tutorial for unlocking and rooting the N4)

Case #2: Absence of proper drivers

nexus 4 not recognized by pc only charging

Open device manager by right-clicking My Computer > Properties and then choosing the Device Manager option present on the left pane. If your Nexus 4 is plugged in and ADB Interface item is not present in the device list (as shown in the screenshot above), then you most probably need to re-install the correct drivers.


Universal Naked Driver is an useful tool for installing proper drivers for the Nexus 4 developed by XDA folks. At the time of writing this post, 32 & 64 Bit Windows 8 / 7 / Vista and XP are supported.

If the above two steps didn’t solve your problem of Nexus 4 not recognized by PC then, well, you’ll probably have to take your phone to an LG service centre  Let me know if you have any questions regarding this guide.

(2) Comments

  1. Jose

    Thanks! I had usb problems after a nightly in cm. I flashed paranoid android and still was not recognized by pc. After surrendering and thinking it was a hardware problem my friend forwarded me this. I tried trickster mod, turned off fast charge and it works now! Thanks!

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