USB will recognize devices whether there is a driver for the device or not. When USB sees the device enumerate it broadcasts a hot plug event and if a driver wants to take ownership it can. In the case of some standard classes (such as Human Interface Device…keyboards, mice, joysticks) there will always be a driver available. Many devices though are not standardized, and you must make available the driver for that specific device. You might get lucky and have a specific driver for a specific device available on a desktop install even if the device is not a standard class. An example is that the very popular FTDI chipsets are available for serial USB UARTs and would provide a “/dev/ttyUSB*” without special installation.
If you have a driver for your device, and if the device is not well known, there may also be a “/dev/” file produced, but the name would not be as you expect…devfs has rules to rename certain devices (especially custom driver devices wanting to look generic) to something commonly expected.
If you monitor “dmesg --follow” as you plug in and unplug the device what does it show?
If you look at lsusb you will see an ID in the format of “1234:5678”. Use this to look at a verbose listing of just that one device…what does that show? Substitute “1234:5678” with your actual ID:
sudo lsusb -d 1234:5678 -vvv