USB Midi Device


I am trying to write an application that needs to detect when a particular midi device is plugged in however I am having some problems. It turns out that any device that uses the standard windows midi drivers will show up on the computer as a “Generic USB Audio Device” but I need to be able to decipher between different USB Audio Devices so that when my device is plugged in the application will pop up. I could poll each device with a Sysex message however that would hold up the midi devices from other being used by another program.

Is there a function that can retrieve the string descriptors from a USB device so that I can tell the difference between two USB Audio Devices?

Or would it be hard to write one?


Well the device name isn’t the name of the thing on the other end of the wire, it’s the midi port name. I wouldn’t expect the OS to make any attempt to find out a name for the actual midi device itself, so I think that’s up to you with sysexes or whatever midi commands are appropriate…


If I go to the device manager and I go to the properties of the USB Audio Device it shows the manufacturer as “(Generic USB Audio)” and the Location as “Location 0 (Device Name)”

So the name that I need has been loaded from the device onto the computer, but I wonder if it is possible to get that data somehow.


Well in that case I guess the info’s in there somewhere, so there must be a way to get it out. You’ve not actually mentioned what OS you’re running, but maybe try having a look through the platform-specific midi code and see if you can spot any clues.


Sorry, I am bad for giving details. I am running this on a PC with windows XP SP2, but would like to keep things as platform independent as possible.

Thanks for your help on this.


I encounter this problem and never find a solution to get the name of a generic USB audio device on Win XP.
If your application is a standalone (i.e you master the MIDI IO), my advice is to use the MIDI device inquiry which is the best way to detect a specific device.

If you can’t find documentation about this, ask me and I’ll give you more explanation.