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No Local Drives Visible in My Computer

by tymbrwlf / May 28, 2009 11:20 AM PDT

I have a VERY strange issue. I recently "upgraded" back to Windows XP after a less then stellar experience with Vista. I backed up my files and did a fresh install of a slipstreamed copy of XP, SP3. Once installed and updated, I began reinstalling my applications. During this process I noticed that none of the local drives were visible in My Computer BUT they are visible in Disk Management and Windows Explorer. These are the attached devices:

A: = Floppy Drive
C: = 1 TB Internal SATA drive
D: = External USB 1 TB eSATA Drive
E: = Interal 100 MB Zip drive
F: = DVDR Drive

This has me stumped. I have checked all of the settings I could find relating to hiding drives/folder for security reasons and those are all set to default (i.e. the drives SHOULD be visible). I just find it very odd that they show up in Explorer but not in My Computer. The reason this is an issue for me is that when I download something or try to open/save a file from within an application like Word or Photoshop, I cannot browse to that file's location; my only choices are Recent Documents, Desktop, My Documents, and My Network Places.

Any help is greatly appreciated.

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Yep that's weird. Nil in My Computer, but shows in Explorer.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / May 29, 2009 5:40 AM PDT

Since My Computer is just a version of Windows Explorer I can't imagine why it is not showing up there.

What happens if;

1] Open My Computer, click the "Folders" button in the button toolbar at the top? This changes My Computer to Windows Explorer. Do the missing drives appear in the left hand pane?

2] Open a Windows Explorer window. Highlight My Computer. Do the missing drives display in the right hand pane?

Do the missing drives appear in the Device Manager?

If you downloaded and installed Microsoft's Powertoys TweakUI for XP, what shows up in it's My Computer > Drives section. Can you select those drives, or if they are already selected, de-select them, Apply/OK out, then open TweakUI again and re-select them?

Just a note. If you can highlight Desktop in any Save As window, you should still be able to 'backtrack' to any of the other drives.

Mark

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Still baffled
by tymbrwlf / May 29, 2009 9:49 AM PDT

1) Yes, they do.

2) Again, yes

All of the "missing" drives are present in Device Manager.

The TweakUI utility doesn't change anything.

I tried the backtracking thing and it doesn't work either.

To add to the weirdness; if I right-click on the desktop, choose properties, and go to customize (where you "should" be able to add/remove the My Computer/Network/etc icons to the desktop), the only choice is My Documents; the others are greyed out.

I do have Stardock's Object Desktop installed and running under my user profile but not under any other profiles. I created a new user account and logged into a default desktop configuration with that and the result was the same. This issue is global and not profile specific and not related to Object Desktop as I first suspected.

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OK, more testing.
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / May 29, 2009 9:07 PM PDT
In reply to: Still baffled

What about the My Computer link in the Start menu? Does that work properly or does it show the same symptoms?

When did this problem begin? Can you think of anything that happened, or that you were doing, at the time? Is there a System Restore point available for you to revert back to a time before this first occurred? You can always "Undo" a System Restore if it changes nothing.

If it coincides with the Stardock software install, then despite the results from the other account, that would be my favorite suspect.

I've just had a look at Stardock's web site and I see it completely modifies the Desktop, so I am now guessing you are not talking about a My Computer icon on the Desktop display anyway, but elsewhere. I also notice it includes WindowBlinds. Both of these modify the Windows shell GUI extensively, and that can cause unexpected problems for some users.

The other suspect is malware. What security protection do you employ for this system?

Mark

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