Today I made a small change I figured I could undo if it didn't help the speed and apparently I was wrong because everything went awry.
Here's what I did and the subsequent problems thereafter:
I went into Windows Explorer and pulled up the properties on the hard drive (C: drive on my computer). Under the "Hardware" tab on the properties window I highlighted the external drive (E: drive) and clicked properties there. Under the "Policies" tab on that window there are two radio buttons, the one that was checked states "Optimize for quick removal - This setting disables write caching on the disk and in Windows, so you can disconnect this device without using the Safe Removal icon." The icon for Safe Removal was in the taskbar, though, and the one time before this I had disconnected the drive I used the Safe Removal.
The second radio button states "Optimize for performance - This setting enables the write caching in Windows to improve disk performance. To disconnect this device from the computer, click the Safely Remove Hardware icon in the taskbar notification area." I wanted to improve the drive's performance and decided to check this button in hopes that might help. As I said, I figured I could change back if it didn't do anything.
When I applied the change a small window popped up with the flashlight going back and forth and the top of the window said "Auto play" and it appeared to be reading the external drive, the blue light was also on on the drive. Then, it automatically opened Windows Media player. It tried to play the first song in a long play list it had made and a window had come up at the same time the player started trying to play the song that just said "working". The cursor just kept cycling and the song wasn't really playing just starting and stopping. The "working" window didn't go away and I kept trying to stop the application.
This went on for a bit and I finally cntrl/alt/deleted but even End Task wouldn't shut it down. Eventually I did a restart from the Windows Task Manager.
When the computer logged out of Windows and the boot screen came up, the screen then went black. I waited for 20 minutes, I guess, and nothing, so I hit the power button and shut the computer down that way. When I started it again I got the screen asking how I wanted to start and since I didn't think anything was wrong I had it start Windows normally.
When I pulled up Windows Explorer to change the radio buttons back the external drive was no longer listed even though it was still connected and I swear I saw the blue light come on when the computer was rebooting. I checked the Device Manager and under Disk Drives and Universal Serial Bus controllers the drive was still listed. Using the Safe Removal I unplugged and replugged it in the same USB port, restarted and got the blank screen again for a long time (though possibly not as long as before when I did the hard shut down) before Windows finally started up. Still no external drive in Explorer, but still listed in Device Manager.
I Safe Removed again and changed USB port, restarted, same blank screen and long reboot time, still no external drive in Explorer but still listed in Device Manager. Several times I uninstalled the drivers by right clicking the drive in both the Disk Drive category and the Universal Serial Bus controllers category. Each time I checked the Device Status box and every time it said the device was working properly. Each time I restarted after checking to see if the changes made showed it listed in Explorer and if I could access it and when I couldn't I'd restart.
I gave up trying to figure it out on my own and unplugged using Safe Removal. When I restarted the computer no more blank screen and long reboot time. I plugged it back in to see and it gave me the blank screen and long, long reboot time. I've left it unplugged for now.
The people of this forum have helped me greatly in the past, I am hoping you can help me now. Any words are happily appreciated, thank you.
Edited by FuchsiaIce, 16 October 2007 - 05:54 AM.