How to Connect an Xbox Remote to a PC

Updated April 17, 2017

Computers running the Windows XP operating system or later will support the use of an Xbox 360 controller for gameplay. Wired and wireless versions of the Xbox 360 controller can be connected to a PC or laptop computer. Games for Windows Live are required to support the Xbox 360 controllers if the game supports any form of gamepad for operation and play.

Install the necessary software to your computer to allow the controller to function with Windows. The Xbox 360 controller should have come with an installation CD that included the software. The software can be downloaded from the Xbox Support website for controllers that do not include a CD (see Resources).

Plug the USB cable on the controller into the USB port on the computer.

Test the connection for the Xbox 360 controller. Click the "Start" menu and type "joy.cpl" (without quotes) in the computer's search function. Click on the "joy.cpl" application and click on the Xbox 360 controller. Open the "Properties" menu and test the controller by manipulating the device's buttons and joysticks.

Plug the USB cable from the Xbox Wireless Receiver into your computer's USB port.

Insert the included CD into your computer's CD/DVD drive. Install the wireless receiver's software and restart the computer (if necessary). The software can also be downloaded through the Microsoft Support website (see Resources).

Press the Xbox guide button on the controller to power on the device.

Press the "Connect" button on the wireless receiver. The light will flash green on the device.

Press the connect button on the Xbox controller, located on the top edge of the device near the "LB" button. The device has been connected successfully when the lights stop flashing on the wireless receiver and the controller.

Things You'll Need

  • Xbox 360 controller
  • Xbox 360 Wireless Gaming Receiver (for wireless controllers)
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About the Author

Ross Lane began writing in 2009 with work published on the website GameObserver. He is a communication instructor at Boise State University and he received his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in communication and journalism from Boise State.