Does USB 2.0 10 port hub work with the Apple ultrathin aluminum keyboard?

I keep getting error message: “A USB device needs more power.” The hub power cable is plugged into the outlet and has power.

Hi Ryker,

Thanks for posting! Can you do a quick test:

Leaving the Apple keyboard, etc. connected to the hub, can you:

  1. Unplug the USB cable between the hub and the Mac, and make sure the blue LED is on (confirms that the hub is getting power from the wall)
  2. Reboot the Mac (because once you get that message, the Mac may disable that port entirely; Windows never does this, so it can be a surprise).
  3. Then reconnect the hub. Does that Apple keyboard work now?

By making sure that power is connected before USB from hub->Mac, you’re also making sure that all ports are in self-power mode.

Let us know your results and if that helps!


Hi Bernie,
I did steps 1, 2, 3 and got same problem. Step 1 showed that the hub is powered without the USB cable connected. The mouse is also plugged into the hub, and it works fine. Please let me know if anything else I should try. Thanks.

Hi Ryker - interesting! We would like to get this figured out. This seems to be something outside of normal USB behavior. I’ll send you an email with some thoughts on next steps…

For the benefit of others: Ryker mentioned that the keyboard gives the same message when directly connected to the MacBook (which is what originally triggered the search for a powered hub).

So it seems to be something wrong at the keyboard level (most likely) or perhaps at the Macbook level.

A trip to Apple / Genius Bar should clear it up (perhaps trying another unit of the same keyboard). Once it’s working when directly connected to the Mac, it should work through the hub, too …

For those that are curious: At the Genius Bar, they were able to confirm that it was a bad Apple ultrathin aluminum keyboard unit that would trigger the error on all USB ports, hub or not. A replacement keyboard solved the issue.