How to Fix a Drawing Tablet Not Being Detected by a PC

Regardless of what drawing table you have, all of them are susceptible to technical malfunctions. While frustrating, it isn’t all that uncommon The tablet not being detected is one of the big issues users have reported.

This issue is more common in the Wacom tablet compared to any other brand. However, these fixes apply to all brands:

  • Update drivers/Windows
  • Reinstall drivers
  • Restart the tablet/PC
  • Check Cables

As you read, there will be step-by-step guides on how to do each one of these and what the result should be. There will be a solution of some sort for you here and we’ll start from the most likely cause.

Update Drivers and Windows

For some reason, these tablets like to fight with Windows, constantly. Sometimes the issue is drivers being out of date because Windows doesn’t always keep things up to date, or a new Windows update can cause conflicts with the older drivers for tablets.

This usually can be fixed by installing the latest drivers. Technology loves to fight against itself and sometimes it just takes a little wiggling around to get it to work properly. If drivers aren’t the issue, it may be something that is more of a pain.

Driver Updates

This has a handful of steps to it, but it’s a fairly easy process and should only take you a few minutes. There are two ways you can do this step:

  1. Use Windows search and look for “Device Manager”.
  2. In the device manager, look for your tablet’s name.
  3. When you find it, right-click on it.
  4. It should give you the option to update the drivers.

Manually Update Drivers

Now, sometimes it doesn’t give you the option to do the automatic update that way and you will have to manually update your drivers. Again, this is pretty easy:

  1. Search up your tablet and the drivers for it.
  2. Download the newest drivers.
  3. Install them by following the instructions it shows.

You shouldn’t need to uninstall the old drivers first, but sometimes it can help. The way the software interacts in Windows, it should just basically paste the newest version over the old version. If it doesn’t work, or there are any conflicts, don’t worry because we’ll be covering fresh installs in a minute.

Update Windows

Windows, especially 11, has a ton of issues with conflicts with other software. It’s fairly new and there are kinks to work out, which is why it needs to be updated as much as possible. These updates will fix little quirks and incompatibility issues.

It’s best you don’t put off the updates because they are full of patches, which could be why your tablet is not detected at all or only briefly. Updating Windows is very simple and straight forward though.

  1. Type “Update” in the windows search function.
  2. Look at the page it brings up and see if anything is downloading.
  3. If there is, select “Download and Install”.
  4. It will probably take several minutes for it to download.
  5. After it’s downloaded, select “Restart now” when prompted.
  6. This will install the update.

If you don’t update often and you have lots of updates it needs to cycle through, be aware that this can take a while to install. You may also notice that your computer will restart several times during this process, but that’s okay. It’s normal for it to do that when it had multiple large updates pending.

After your computer is done updating, give your tablet a try once more, and hopefully, all you needed was a simple windows update. If not, there are some more fixes coming up.

Reinstall Drivers

If you tried manually updating the drivers from the last step, you can use that download for this as well. If you did not, you will need to search the manufacturer’s website for the newest drivers. Download them but do not do anything with them quite yet.

In order for this to work, you need to make sure any and all related software is completely off your computer. So, we’ll go through some very easy steps to make sure this goes as smoothly as possible for you with as few hiccups as possible.

  1. Search in Windows for “Device Manager”.
  2. Look for the name of your tablet.
  3. Right-click on the name and select “Uninstall driver”.
  4. Then search windows again for “Control Panel” and select “Uninstall a Program”.
  5. Search the list for ANY programs associated with your specific tablet.
  6. Uninstall them.
  7. Restart your computer.
  8. Install the drivers you downloaded earlier and follow the steps.

Hopefully, after all this, your tablet is now being detected by your computer. If not, there are a couple of things left.

Turn Off the Device and PC

So, this is just something to try if nothing else has worked. This is the good ole’ turn it off and back on again. If nothing else worked, this probably won’t but technology has a mind of its own.

All you have to do is simply shut down the computer and tablet if it has a power button. Make sure it is off completely before you power everything back up again. Power the PC up first and then the tablet.

Check the Cables

You can try swapping your connecting cables out for new ones. Examine the one you currently have and see if there is any distress on the cable. If it looks good, it could just be a worn cable on the inside or the connecting sides.

Make sure you keep all your cables stored away from any sort of moisture because that can erode the wires inside and cause issues.


If none of these solutions have helped, the next best bet is going to be reaching out to the manufacturer for a warranty replacement, or if it hasn’t been long you can always get a replacement.

Hopefully, the drivers were the issues and you are now making amazing art on your drawing tablet! If it happens again, you may want to repeat the step that made it start working again.