Question about Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

1 Answer

Firmware update does not recognize Sleek

I've been having problems with my Zen Sleek freezing up, so I went to Creative's website for troubleshooting. I followed the recommendations to copy all songs to my computer, and then format the MP3 player. I also ran the "clean up" in the recovery mode for good measure. I figure it might have been a firmware problem too, so I downloaded a new firmware from Creative, and removed it from my Sleek (probably a bad idea).

Now, when I try to run the firmware program, it says that my Zen Sleek is not plugged in, even though it is. My computer recognizes that it is plugged in, but the firmware program does not. Please help! I can't live without my music!

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  • Anonymous Dec 03, 2007

    Exactly the same thing happened to me!!! please help!

  • gl600 Dec 03, 2007

    The exact same thing happened to me... now i can't use my player.. please help!

  • tom1097 Dec 05, 2007

    Same problem with me, but I will go astep further, I had a MP3 repair company look at my Zen Sleek 20Gb due to a sticky power button, they tried to update the firmware and the unit wasn't recognized by their computer either. They also could not get the software update from the creative site, so now my unit is stuck in recovery mode and doesn't work. I am beginning to dislike Creative...

  • par383 Dec 05, 2007

    I installed it on a new laptop, and it worked. However, I gave up on the Zen Sleek. I broke down and bought the new Zune 80 GB media player. I'm much happier with that than the Zen Sleek.



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  • 4,402 Answers

Is it possible to try another computer or laptop?

Posted on Dec 05, 2007


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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

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SOURCE: Reloading Firmware on Zen Sleek Photo

This is what I found. Windows Media Player 11 messes it up. All you have to do is uninstall anything Windows Media Player 11 and then run the firmware upgrader. It's some sort of but. You can reinstall WMP when your done installing the firmware. I found it on the creative forum.

Posted on Jan 16, 2008

  • 4402 Answers

SOURCE: Zen Sleek not recognized by firmware: not connected msg

Make sure you have media player 11
If you can, the best test is to try your player with another PC, to see if you still have the problem. This localises whether the problem is with the PC (most likely the USB) or the player. See the link below (search on "connection problems") for a lot more troubleshooting on this.
Download recovery tool off creative's website.
go to my computer > click on hardware tab >
click on device manager button > in the is next screen on the bottom should have>>universal serial bus controllers
(write these down just in case it cant find them)
right click on them and uninstall
reboot let windows reinstall them

Also told Microsoft hotfix causes this problem try uninstalling the last hotfix
If that doesn't fix it try the USB cable

good luck
please mark the post with a fixya

Posted on Feb 19, 2008

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Related Questions:

1 Answer

My zen photo sleek is stuck in recovery mode

I had this same problem and almost threw out the Zen. You need to download the Zen Sleek Photo firmware upgrade software from Creative (

  1. The firmware updater needs to run in XP SP2 or SP3. It apparently won't run on Vista.
  2. The trick to getting the Zen recognized by the firmware update software is to make sure you uninstall both WMP11 as well as the WMP11 Runtime. Those two things are listed separately in Add/Remove programs. BOTH must be uninstalled before the firmware updater will recognize your Zen.
Now I'm back to using my Zen. It's all good.

Nov 26, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

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Creative Zen Sleek Firmware Problem...

u r facing a short circuit in the motherboard of ur device!

plz rate this post

if u can solve it in ur own u need to be Chinees - -

Aug 27, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

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My Creative Zen Sleek Photo freezes at the stage when the screen says "Zen Sleek Photo" and will not respond, reseting the player does not help, and I have tried to update my firmware, but it...

I had the same problem. Mine would go to the Sleek Photo Screen and then the Creative screen. After that it would freeze and do nothing. I tried to reset, reboot, all that. I downloaded the newest firmware, but my pc wouldn't recognize the player. I went in to the control panel and hit add/remove programs. I removed my WMP 11 and the WMP runtime (I heard these can mask the player). Sure enough, I rebooted the pc and it recognized my player. I was then able to launch the firmware update and now my player is working like a charm.

Jul 29, 2008 | Audio Players & Recorders

1 Answer

HELP! Zen Creative Sleek Photo 20 gb

What you have to do is flash the firmware. And this is another huge problem. If you have WMP 11 you have to downgrade/uninstall it from you computer or use a computer that doesn't have it on.
Next connect your MP3 player after you have:
1. cleaned it
2. formated it
(you get to the recovery menu by holding play/pause sign and inserting a paper clip into the reset orifice.
Once it is recognized a menu will pop up asking you if you want to do various things, one of them is to sync or add files to your player using WMP 9 or 10, depending on the machine you have. CLICK that option.
Next you have to run the firmware application provided on the Creative website and that will flash your player with the firmware. It should work fine afterwards.

Make a backup of of the files if you care about them before you start this adventure.

Jul 06, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

4 Answers

Getting out of recovery mode

The recovery tool mentioned above is not designed for the sleek photo. You need to download the firmware for the sleek photo from creative's site. Now we need to get your player recognized to get the firmware loaded. If you have Windows Media Player 11, it needs to be removed. Also remove WMP runtime. After that, restart the pc and your player should be recognized. You can then double click on the firmware program to run it. It might say something like, this firmaware is already you want to reload it? Click yes to reload.

I had the same problem with my sleek photo. Once I got rid of WMP and the runtime everything worked like a charm.

Jul 02, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

3 Answers

Help me

Have you tried inserting a paperclip into the small hole to the right of the port?

Apr 26, 2008 | Creative Labs Zen Sleek Photo MP3 Player

1 Answer

Zen Sleek Photo 20 g

I feel your pain. Yesterday I was in the same place as you. My player stopped working and would freeze after the splash screen. When I plugged it in, I could see the player in windows explorer, but the firmware update software, creative software, etc. kept saying it wasn't there. I went in to the control panel and hit add/remove hardware. I removed Windows Media Player (11 can mask the recognition of a player when something happens to it) and WMP runtime. I rebooted the pc and the player was then recognized. I could run the firmware update and the player works fine now.

Also, just a note. If you do get the firmware to run, mine said that firmware blah.blah.blah was already installed (even though it wasn't). Just hit okay to overwrite it.

Good luck!

Mar 05, 2008 | Creative Labs Zen Sleek Photo MP3 Player

6 Answers

Creative zen sleek photo not recognized by win xp

I got my Creative Zen Sleek Photo from a friend and everything I did wouldn't let Windows recognize it, but then I got it to work almost magically.

1. Make sure you have the proper drivers installed for it that come with the CD. If you don't have the CD, you can download the ISO here.

2. Reboot. When it comes back up, plug the cable into your computer, then into your Sleek. The software should sync up. For some reason, my Zen wasn't being recognized from the usb port on my computer tower, but I plugged it into my monitor's USB port and then it worked. Try that, if none of that works, then it may be a problem with your computer not knowing which driver to assign to your Zen, and if so, try the steps below.


1. Plug your Sleek to your computer.
2. Open up Windows' Device manager (right-click on "My Computer" and select "Properties". Go to the "Hardware" tab, then click "Device Manager").
3. Locate the entry for "Creative Zen Sleek" in your device list. It should appear either under "Sound, video, and game controllers" or under "USB Devices". Once you locate the entry, uninstall it.
4. Unplug your Sleek and wait a few seconds.
5. Plug your Sleek back in and allow the "new Hardware Wizard" to identify and install the drivers for it.

Mar 01, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

5 Answers

Reloading Firmware on Zen Sleek Photo

This is what I found. Windows Media Player 11 messes it up. All you have to do is uninstall anything Windows Media Player 11 and then run the firmware upgrader. It's some sort of but. You can reinstall WMP when your done installing the firmware. I found it on the creative forum.

Jan 05, 2008 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

2 Answers

Can't reinstall Firmware

It only sees the player if you are using Windows Media Player 10! Try a fresh computer. Get it to see the Zen Sleek by updating the driver. Load Media Player 10 (Not 11) and try the update firmware program again. Best of luck

Feb 13, 2007 | Creative Labs ZEN SLEEK MP3 Player

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