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Question

Very odd problem with USB drive

Weird stuff with a thumb drive

I have a brand-new Sandisk 64 GB Ultra thumb drive.

When I plug this thumb drive into a USB port on my Windows 10 computer, the LED on it lights up, the control panel recognizes the drive as "Ultra Backup", but File Explorer does not recognize it. File Explorer on my Windows XP machine also does not recognize the drive. That tells me this is NOT a registry problem. Other thumb drives I have work fine, so I think this is probably not a driver problem (contrary to what a Sandisk tech support person told me).

This problem began when I started to do a system backup. I inserted the drive into the machine and it showed up as I:.

I started RECOVERY, then at some point clicked CANCEL on the window that opened.

I then used "Safely remove hardware and eject media" to remove the drive.

But when I next inserted the drive, I found the problem I described.

When I click HARDWARE AND SOUND in control panel, the device shows up as "Ultra Backup". When I right click that icon, then click PROPERTIES, I get a box that says "Ultra Backup Properties". The info in that box says "Manufacturer unavailable", and shows the model as "Ultra Backup". The Hardware tab in this box says the device is working normally.

My guess about this problem is that somehow, software has managed to corrupt the drive in a particularly sneaky, difficult way.

Can anyone make a guess (or provide actual diagnosis) about what's going on here?

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Clarification Request
What model is this one

In reply to: Very odd problem with USB drive

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Also.

In reply to: What model is this one

That size drive will not work on XP.
Dafydd.

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Further to that.

In reply to: Also.

Years ago I had to get a wireless USB stick for XP. I can't remember the brand but I had to search for a driver for it. Found and installed it and hey, away to go!
Dafydd.

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SanDisk Ultra, good from the first use,

In reply to: What model is this one

This is a SanDisk Ultra, and it was good from the first use. I don't think it's a problem with the hardware. After all, it worked; and the control panel recognizes that it's got something called ULTRA plugged into the USB port.

At this point I want to know what happened--so I can prevent this from happening infuture, and maybe learn something about how to deal with similar problems.

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Since it's out of XP's league.

In reply to: SanDisk Ultra, good from the first use,

Without special drivers etc. The moment you plug it into an old or even another PC the drive could be corrupted and will need a wipe/format to bring it back into service. Sandisk should have a tool or procedure for wipes and formats.

Then you know not to plug it into old PCs.

All Answers

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Answer
Flash stick

In reply to: Very odd problem with USB drive

What does disk management have to say about this stick?

Can you partition and format it?

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To Bob_B: Can't partition it; also...

In reply to: Flash stick

In Control Panel | Hardware and Sound, the drive is recognized as a Sandisk Ultra Backup USB Device. The panel that popped up when I clicked PROPERTIES says "this device is working properly."

Cannot partition it since File Explorer does not recognize it, i.e. does not give it a drive letter.

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Partition

In reply to: To Bob_B: Can't partition it; also...

I did not say file explorer.

Disk management.
I don't know where it is in w10 but in w7 it's in the control panel > admin tools.

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Re-posting.

In reply to: Partition

I have to use the maker's tool to format it or try my usual power tools like GPARTED and HP's USB FORMATTER. But in this case I would ask Sandisk how to wipe and get it working again (Sandisk usually has tools to do this.)

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/3389/session/L2F2LzEvdGltZS8xNTAzMjU1Mjk4L3NpZC9mVUFDcU5kYXNENHEwWG1zdWNWV1JvZlM2SlpwT0NvNlI4UnRFeEFxUEVXZzVZYlU0Y25yVlVpdW5qSHJzbE5vSFZ0VHl4eDBuVXY4YlhJZlpoZlljZUl2Q2YwMFB4OThMQXZkVkpnVkhJc19fX2l6OG5YSVJFVnclMjElMjE%3D

The KB link tells us that 64GB (exFAT) on XP is not supported and the patch is gone. This means you can blow up the file system just by sticking this drive into a XP machine. So, don't do that again.

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/312/~/formatting-a-memory-card%2C-flash-drive-or-device-using-a-pc tells you to RMA a drive that can't be formatted that way.

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/19258/~/formatting-usb-drives-with-third-party-tools notes the HP USB Formatter again.

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XP machine not at fault

In reply to: Re-posting.

I connected the drive to the XP machine AFTER my Windows 10 machine would not recognize it, so the damage was already done.

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And unplugging at the wrong moment can

In reply to: XP machine not at fault

Corrupt a drive. Not as often today but can reinforce why the moderators write "We only lose what we don't backup."

I hope you can reformat it and avoid the RMA.

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(NT) Learned that lesson long ago!

In reply to: And unplugging at the wrong moment can

Post was last edited on August 20, 2017 3:57 PM PDT

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Any luck with the tools noted?

In reply to: Learned that lesson long ago!

I can't see where you are trying to recover the drive.

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No luck

In reply to: Any luck with the tools noted?

I can't recover anything unless the drive shows up with a letter in Disk Management, and thee's no way for me to arbitrarily enter a drive letter.

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Odd.

In reply to: No luck

I've used the HP formatter when there was no drive letter.

Looks like RMA then as noted in the links.

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How did you specify the drive?

In reply to: Odd.

What letter did you use?

What is RMA?

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For some reason

In reply to: How did you specify the drive?

The HP tool showed the drive.

As to RMA, The maker's web page writes:

"NOTE: If the above steps do NOT resolve the problem or if the lock switch is missing or broken, please back up your data and request a replacement using our online web form."

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Sorry. Reposting was meant for OP

In reply to: Partition

Hope they figure this out.

Post was last edited on August 20, 2017 2:28 PM PDT

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When a file system gets trashed

In reply to: To Bob_B: Can't partition it; also...

I have to use the maker's tool to format it or try my usual power tools like GPARTED and HP's USB FORMATTER. But in this case I would ask Sandisk how to wipe and get it working again (Sandisk usually has tools to do this.)

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/3389/session/L2F2LzEvdGltZS8xNTAzMjU1Mjk4L3NpZC9mVUFDcU5kYXNENHEwWG1zdWNWV1JvZlM2SlpwT0NvNlI4UnRFeEFxUEVXZzVZYlU0Y25yVlVpdW5qSHJzbE5vSFZ0VHl4eDBuVXY4YlhJZlpoZlljZUl2Q2YwMFB4OThMQXZkVkpnVkhJc19fX2l6OG5YSVJFVnclMjElMjE%3D

The KB link tells us that 64GB (exFAT) on XP is not supported and the patch is gone. This means you can blow up the file system just by sticking this drive into a XP machine. So, don't do that again.

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/312/~/formatting-a-memory-card%2C-flash-drive-or-device-using-a-pc tells you to RMA a drive that can't be formatted that way.

https://kb.sandisk.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/19258/~/formatting-usb-drives-with-third-party-tools notes the HP USB Formatter again.

Post was last edited on August 20, 2017 12:01 PM PDT

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