Skip to content

My inventory scanner isn't working

Note: The Zebra®/Motorola MC2180 is compatible with Ascend. Other models may work, but are not supported by the Ascend support team.

When something goes wrong with your inventory scanner, our go-to troubleshooting technique is the warm boot. 

To perform a warm boot, just hold the power button down for 2 to 10 seconds. Once the Motorola logo appears, release the power button. When the AscendScan window appears, the reboot is complete.

If the warm boot did not working, do a cold boot. 

For a cold boot, push the power button to open the Powerkey Action menu. Select the Safe Battery Swap option.

Wait for the light to turn red, and then turn off before simultaneously pressing the 19, and power buttons

You'll be here for about a minute and go through several reboot screens. Then you'll be taken to the calibration window. Click the Xs to calibrate the screen and select Enter when prompted. 

Once the scanner boots up, you can use it like normal. 

If you get the backup battery is low warning

If you get this warning, there's no problem. The backup battery charges while you use the scanner, so you can ignore this message. Select ENTER to close it and use the scanner like normal. 

If your scanner won't turn on

If the scanner won't turn on or the battery isn't charging, you can check a couple things:
1. Is the scanner sitting in the cradle correctly? Pick it up and reset is in the cradle. 
2. Is the battery correctly inserted in the scanner? Take the battery out and put it back in the scanner.
3. Check the cords. Are they correctly connected to the cradle, the computer, and the power outlet? 
    a. Hook the cradle to a different USB port on the computer.

If the screen is too dark/bright

If the scanner screen is too dark or too bright, you can adjust the brightness.

1. Exit AscendScan on the scanner.
2. Press the orange button, then F2 to open the contrast control.

3. Use the arrow keys to make the screen brighter or darker.
4. Select ENTER when you're done. 

If all scans come up as "Not Found"

If one or two scans are giving you bad beeps, and the products come up as "Not Found," it's likely an inventory issue. But if all scans are giving you bad beeps, something is probably going on with your scanner.

Check the microSD card.
1. Hit the Power button on the scanner.
2. Select Safe Battery Swap from the menu.
3. Remove the battery to get to the memory card.
4. Push the cover down to release the SD card, and pull the metal holder towards you to remove the SD card.
5. Remove the SD card.
6. Verify that it's a 2GB card (our suggested size).
7. Insert the SD card.
     a. Make sure the contacts are facing down.
     b. Push the cover back up to lock the SD card in place.

If that doesn't work, you can transfer the product file from Ascend to the scanner one more time. You can also select F + 1 on he scan screen to re-associate the product file. 

If you get memory errors

If you're getting memory errors, such as:
  • Memory allocation error
  • Program memory low
It's time to adjust the scanner's storage space.

1. Select ENTER to close the error on the scanner.
2. Then cradle the scanner.
3. Go to the computer the scanner is connected to.
4. Select the Start menu and search for Windows CE Remote Viewer
5. Select Windows CE Remote Viewer.
6. In the Remote Control Program, select the Windows Start menu > Settings > Control Panel.
7. Double-click into System

8. Navigate to the Memory tab.
9. Now move the Memory Allocation Slider to the right to increase the memory space.

10. Under Storage memory, make sure the Total value is greater than the In Use Value
11. Click Okay to close the window. 
12. Click File > Close to exit the Control Panel.

If the computer won’t recognize the scanner

Not seeing the familiar green Windows Mobile Device Center box pop up when you dock your inventory scanner? Is Ascend exporting your product file to the computer’s hard drive instead of directly to the scanner?

  1. Open your Control Panel (just click on the Start Menu and start typing to search) and navigate to Programs and Features.

  2. Scroll until you find Windows Mobile Device Center and Windows Mobile Device Center Driver Update – in the Version column, both should list 6.1.6965.0.

    If they don’t, uninstall the older versions and install the latest version for your system type.
    Note: Don’t know your system type? Just right-click your Start Menu and choose System.
  3. Access your computer’s Services (again, click the Start Menu and search away).

  4. Right-click and select Run as administrator – you’ll need to do this even if you’re using a Windows® administrator user account.
  5. Scroll until you find Windows Mobile-based device connectivity and Windows Mobile-2003-based device connectivity.

  6. If necessary, right-click each and select Stop (they may not both be running).
  7. Right-click each and select Properties.
  8. Click the Log On tab, select Local System account, and check Allow service to interact with desktop.
  9. Click OK.

  10. Right-click each service and select Start.

Additional Resources

Article: Install an (MC2180) inventory scanner

Article: Recommended settings for AscendScan/the MC2180

Article: My inventory scanner isn't connecting to Windows Mobile Device Center.

Video: Troubleshooting the MC2180

Feedback and Knowledge Base