How to Charge USB Devices with Your Dell Powered Off

When I purchased my Dell XPS 13 9350 a couple of months ago, I expected to be able to charge devices off the USB port while it was powered down. It’s a feature I’ve become accustomed to with Macs over the years, and I’ve been using it increasingly as I travel overseas where hotel rooms often lack power points in the right places.

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Unfortunately, out of the box I was disappointed; despite this little lightning bolt next to the USB icon, as soon as my Dell XPS 13 powered off, so too did the USB power.

Great news, however, is it is only a few moments of tinkering in the BIOS away. You see, Dell ships many of their notebook features with this super-convenient feature disabled.

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To enable it, tap F2 a few times while powering your Dell on. You’ll be presented with all the behind-the-scenes settings.

Expand “System Configuration” and select “USB PowerShare”.

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Save the settings, exit the BIOS, and try plugging a device like a phone into the USB port with the lightning bolt.

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Congrats, you’ve just turned your computer into a very expensive USB power brick!

For a full explanation of the feature head over to the Dell Support site.


About the Author

Mitchell Oke
Mitchell is a video producer and director working with Australia's leading motoring news sites and car companies. He's always on the go with a camera in hand. With a Bachelor of Creative Technology (Digital Video Production), Mitchell's worked for News Limited, CarAdvice.com and as a freelancer for many years.