Rename Hardware in Device Manager on Windows 11/10

Published by Nyau Wai Hoe - Updated on

Changing the names of your computer parts in Device Manager is pretty easy and can make your life a lot simpler, especially if you’re using Windows 11 or 10. This trick is super handy when you’ve got a bunch of things plugged in that all have the same boring name, or if you just want to give a more useful name to something specific in your computer. We’re going to show you how to do this step by step so your computer’s bits and pieces are easier to find and keep track of.

Also see: Unknown USB Device (Set Address Failed) in Windows 11

How to rename hardware in Device Manager on Windows 11 10

How to rename hardware and devices in Device Manager on Windows 11 or 10

Before jumping in, know that you’ll be messing with the Windows Registry, which is like the brain of your Windows computer where all the big settings live. To keep things safe, it’s a really good idea to make a backup of this “brain” or set a restore point, so if anything goes wonky, you can go back to how things were.

  1. First up, open Device Manager on your Windows 11 or 10. You can find it by searching for “Device Manager” in the start menu or by typing devmgmt.msc in the Run dialog (press Windows key + R).Open Device Manager Windows 11
  2. Find the part you want to rename, right-click it, and hit “Properties“.Hardware properties Device Manager Windows 11
  3. In the Properties, switch to the “Details” tab. Look for “Driver key” in a dropdown menu and select it.Device Manager Details Driver Key
  4. Copy the text value that shows up below. This is the driver key and it’s important for the next part.Copy Driver Key of a hardware in Device Manager
  5. Press Windows key + R, type regedit, and hit Enter to open the Registry Editor.Open Registry Editor
  6. Use the address bar to go to Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Enum or find it manually.Rename hardware device manager registry
  7. Right-click the “Enum” key, hit “Find“.Find driver key from registry editor Windows 11
  8. Paste the driver key in the “Find what” box and click “Find Next“.Find hardware of device manager in registry for renaming
  9. If there’s a “FriendlyName” value, edit it. If not, make a new one, name it “FriendlyName“, and then double-click to edit.Registry editor FriendlyName Windows 11
  10. Type in the new name you want for your part in the “Value data” field, then hit “OK“.Rename Device Manager
  11. Back in Device Manager, click “Action” then “Scan for hardware changes” to see your new name in action.Device Manager Scan for hardware changes
  12. Now, your renamed part should show up with its new name.Rename hardware device manager Windows 11

This lets you customize how your computer parts are listed in Device Manager, making it easier to tell them apart, especially when the default names are vague or confusing.

Related resource: Check PC Hardware Manufacturer & Model via WMIC in CMD

Some common issues and considerations

If you rename something and it doesn’t show up right away in Device Manager, try restarting your computer. Sometimes, changes need a reboot to kick in.

Device manager doesn’t reflect the new name

If the new name doesn’t pop up in Device Manager after you refresh, just restart your computer. Some tweaks need a reboot to work.

Error accessing the registry editor

If you can’t open the Registry Editor, make sure you’ve got admin rights. It’s a powerful tool that needs extra permissions.

Accidentally changed the wrong registry value

If you tweak the wrong setting, it could mess things up. Always back up before you start changing things. If you’ve made a mistake, use your backup to fix it.

“FriendlyName” value not saving

If you can’t save your “FriendlyName” changes, check you’ve got admin rights. Also, look out for any rules that might block registry changes.

Maintain clear and descriptive names

When naming things, keep the names clear and useful. It helps you spot exactly what you need, especially if you’ve got a lot of similar things.

Avoid frequent renaming

Changing names all the time can get confusing. Try to stick to names once you’ve picked them and keep a note of old and new names just in case.

Concluding thoughts

If you like fixing computer stuff by yourself, you probably know Device Manager well. It’s where you go to sort out hardware issues or update drivers. But sometimes, the names it gives things aren’t very helpful. By renaming them, you make your tech life easier. Windows tends to use default names that don’t tell you much, so making them more personal helps you spot and manage your gear better.

Important reminder: Be careful when you’re editing the Windows Registry. Getting it wrong can cause problems. Always back up or set a restore point before you start changing things.

Nyau Wai Hoe
Nyau Wai Hoe is the Founder and Chief Editor of With a degree in software engineering and over 12 years of experience in the tech support industry, Nyau has established himself as an expert in the field, with a primary focus on the Microsoft Windows operating system. As a tech enthusiast, he loves exploring new technologies and leveraging them to solve real-life problems.

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