Generally, most USB Sound Cards, or Audio Interfaces, (For example Tascam US-144 & Emu 0404 USB) require their drivers to be installed before they are connected to the host PC or Mac. A failure to follow this procedure generally results in either a failed install or corrupted driver files, which renders the USB Interface unusable until the problem is corrected. It is therefore highly advisable to read the product manual prior to installation and follow to the instructions step by step.
Therefore, before driver installation ensure that either the USB Sound Card or USB Audio Interface is not connected to the host PC, or if it is that it is not switched on or powered up. The next step is to run the driver set-up program, when finished shut down the PC, connect and power up the USB Sound Card and reboot. In the case of a PC, Windows normally recognises that new hardware has been connected as it boots and then installs the appropriate drivers. Note that several drivers, e.g. Midi driver, Windows driver & ASIO driver may be installed. The user should simply follow the Windows prompts and allow the process to complete, at which point the device will be fully installed and ready for use.
(A note on driver signing: please ignore this error message if it appears. Microsoft charge third party hardware developers a small fortune for this and as a result most, if not all, manufacturers tend to avoid getting their drivers signed by Microsoft)
USB Sound Cards & USB Audio Interfaces from experience, which have trouble free installations, are: