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Flash drive not showing up in my computer


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#1 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 07:43 AM

I have a Sandisk Ultra 32 GB flash drive which won't show up in my computer. When I plug it into the USB port the computer makes a sound as normal to acknowledge that the device has been plugged in but it doesn't show up. What I think used to happen was that the computer made a sound, the light flashed for a few seconds and then the computer made a second sound and the drive showed up in my computer. The light on the drive is flashing on and off all the time. I went into control panel, administrative tools, computer management, storage, disk management but again the flash drive does not show up under removable drives. I then went into control panel, device management and opened up disc drives. When I do this my Sandisk Ultra USB device shows up. there is no red x or yellow exclamation mark beside it. So I  right clicked on the drive and choose uninstall. The drive disappears. I then went to the top, right clicked and selected scan for hardware changes. The drive now reappears. If I right click and choose properties it states this device is working properly!

 

I have opened the device and removed the innards in order to check the four connections of the USB connector to the circuit board but there are no breaks and everything appears to be normal. If this was an empty flash drive I'd simply throw it in the bin however it isn't empty. My mother has Alzheimer's and is now in a home. When clearing out her house I came upon thousands of old photographs which I have been scanning and transferring onto this flash drive the idea being to be able to show her a slide show of old photos to stimulate her memory. Most of the photos I transferred over are now gone as I threw them out once they were on the drive. Does anyone have any ideas as to what I should try next? I'm assuming that everything is still on the memory chip and that the fault lies in the board somewhere. I'm considering buying another drive and attempting to transfer the memory chip from mine onto the new one. Anyone tried that before? Would I need the exact same make/size of drive or are the chips generic fitting onto any board? Any help would be much appreciated.



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#2 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 08:10 AM

Have you tried the flash drive on a different computer? If the drive is not detected on another computer I would recommend you consult a professional data recovery service. It is not cheap but they will give a free quote. One of the better ones is DriveSavers.

 

http://www.drivesaversdatarecovery.com/



#3 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 12:45 PM

Have you tried the flash drive on a different computer? If the drive is not detected on another computer I would recommend you consult a professional data recovery service. It is not cheap but they will give a free quote. One of the better ones is DriveSavers.

 

http://www.drivesaversdatarecovery.com/

Not yet but I have another laptop running Windows 95 in the loft which I plan on trying. A professional data recovery service is out of the question unfortunately due to lack of funds.



#4 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 01:20 PM

Don't bother with Windows 95. It will not detect the USB flash drive unless you have specific Win95 drivers for flash drive model and I doubt you will be able to find them if they even do exist. You can do this though. Download Fatdog64. Burn the iso to a CD with Imgburn or on any Windows 7 or later computer you can right click the iso file and select Burn Disk Image. Boot Fatdog and then attach your USB flash drive. If it is detected it you will see a USB icon appear on the desktop and a File Manager window will open showing the files on the flash drive. If Fatdog can mount the USB flash drive post back and I will give instructions on how to copy the files off the flash drive using Fatdog.

 

http://distro.ibiblio.org/fatdog/web/

 

Fatdog64-702.iso



#5 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 02:06 PM

Don't bother with Windows 95. It will not detect the USB flash drive unless you have specific Win95 drivers for flash drive model and I doubt you will be able to find them if they even do exist. You can do this though. Download Fatdog64. Burn the iso to a CD with Imgburn or on any Windows 7 or later computer you can right click the iso file and select Burn Disk Image. Boot Fatdog and then attach your USB flash drive. If it is detected it you will see a USB icon appear on the desktop and a File Manager window will open showing the files on the flash drive. If Fatdog can mount the USB flash drive post back and I will give instructions on how to copy the files off the flash drive using Fatdog.

 

http://distro.ibiblio.org/fatdog/web/

 

Fatdog64-702.iso

I went to the link you supplied and clicked on 'Click here to download the ISO file and burn your own CD.' All I get is a directory of various files with several ISO files contained in it. Which do I want and how do I burn it to CD?



#6 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 03:01 PM

Clicking on the above Fatdog64-702.iso does not start a download of the iso? That is the one you want.



#7 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 04:07 PM

Clicking on the above Fatdog64-702.iso does not start a download of the iso? That is the one you want.

 

Okay, I have that burned to a CD but I can't find an .exe file to run it.



#8 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 04:12 PM

There is no exe file. If you burned the file correctly you should see a number of files on the disk. Restart your computer and it will boot fatdog, a linux based OS. When you get to the desktop of fatdog attach the USB flash drive.

 

If it does not boot the CD make sure your optical drive is the first boot device in BIOS.



#9 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 04:54 PM

There is no exe file. If you burned the file correctly you should see a number of files on the disk. Restart your computer and it will boot fatdog, a linux based OS. When you get to the desktop of fatdog attach the USB flash drive.

 

If it does not boot the CD make sure your optical drive is the first boot device in BIOS.

 

What can I say? Top man! I booted into Fatdog 64 and connected the flash drive and it showed up no problem. All my files are there thank God. Can you tell me how I get them from Fatdog back into a file in Windows or onto a new flashdrive if that's possible? By the way now that we know the files are there have you any idea why the drive wouldn't open in Windows? Could this have been down to a virus of some kind? I got one of those ransomware windows up a few months ago but I immediately shut down the computer, disconnected from the internet, started in safe mode and ran every anti virus and anti malware program I could get my hands on. Didn't have any problems after that, but could this be connected?



#10 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 05:09 PM

Nice. Copying files is a little different in linux fatdog.

 

In the lower left you will notice drives labeled sda1...sda2....sda3. These are your hard drive partitions. you windows partition may be sda2.

 

Your Windows partition may be on sda2 but it may be different in your case. Click once on the partition icon. The partition should mount and a File Manager Window will open like what your USB flash drive did. If you do not see your normal Windows files/folders then close the Window and click on another sdaX icon. You can resize and move the two windows (your sdaX and USB flash drive windows) until they are side by side by left clicking and dragging the corner and title bar similar to Windows to resize and left clicking the title bar to move the window. Once you have both windows side by side highlight the data you want to copy by pressing Ctrl and left clicking or left clicking and dragging a window around your files/folders. You only need to click once to open a folder in Fatdog. Once you have your files/folders highlighted drag them from the USB flash drive window to the sdaX window to. A small dialog window will open. Select Copy and check the quiet box. Make sure you do not check the Move button. Once all your files are copied exit out of Fatdog. You may want to open a few to see if the copy was successful

 

Edit: if you want to copy to a new flash drive attach it and click on the new USB icon. Move the Windows side by side and drag the files between windows.


Edited by JohnC_21, 20 September 2016 - 05:11 PM.


#11 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 05:16 PM

Nice. Copying files is a little different in linux fatdog.

 

In the lower left you will notice drives labeled sda1...sda2....sda3. These are your hard drive partitions. you windows partition may be sda2.

 

Your Windows partition may be on sda2 but it may be different in your case. Click once on the partition icon. The partition should mount and a File Manager Window will open like what your USB flash drive did. If you do not see your normal Windows files/folders then close the Window and click on another sdaX icon. You can resize and move the two windows (your sdaX and USB flash drive windows) until they are side by side by left clicking and dragging the corner and title bar similar to Windows to resize and left clicking the title bar to move the window. Once you have both windows side by side highlight the data you want to copy by pressing Ctrl and left clicking or left clicking and dragging a window around your files/folders. You only need to click once to open a folder in Fatdog. Once you have your files/folders highlighted drag them from the USB flash drive window to the sdaX window to. A small dialog window will open. Select Copy and check the quiet box. Make sure you do not check the Move button. Once all your files are copied exit out of Fatdog. You may want to open a few to see if the copy was successful

 

Edit: if you want to copy to a new flash drive attach it and click on the new USB icon. Move the Windows side by side and drag the files between windows.

 

 

Thanks for that you've saved my life. I'll have to leave until tomorrow as it's time to hit the sack but at least I'll rest easier. I'll send a post in tomorrow to let you know how I get on.



#12 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 06:11 PM

I can't say if this is virus related. If after copying your files to a new USB flash drive you feel there is a problem then post in the Am I Infected Forum. Ransomware usually encrypts your files.

 

It's also possible there is a conflict with other USB flash drive drivers on the computer. Are other flash drives detected on the computer? There are times when Windows will refuse to mount a partition that has no problem with linux. What OS is on the computer? What is the make and model of the computer?



#13 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 06:46 PM

I can't say if this is virus related. If after copying your files to a new USB flash drive you feel there is a problem then post in the Am I Infected Forum. Ransomware usually encrypts your files.

 

It's also possible there is a conflict with other USB flash drive drivers on the computer. Are other flash drives detected on the computer? There are times when Windows will refuse to mount a partition that has no problem with linux. What OS is on the computer? What is the make and model of the computer?

 

That's what I was thinking, that they were encrypted in some way and wouldn't show up in windows.

 

All other flash drives are detected immediately. Operating system is Windows 7. Never gave into the Windows 10 bribery as I think it's rubbish compared to 7. The computer is a custom built Sony Vaio VPCEA3C5E. Pity they no longer make computers as I would be buying a new one at some point.



#14 JohnC_21

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 06:54 PM

Good luck on retrieving the files. There is a utility that can delete old USB drivers but if you get the data copied to a new drive and the new drive is detected using Windows I would not use the problematic flash drive and make sure you backup the files to another device considering the importance of the photos. Even look to uploading them to the cloud such as OneDrive or Google Drive.



#15 Gozoman

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Posted 20 September 2016 - 07:15 PM

Good luck on retrieving the files. There is a utility that can delete old USB drivers but if you get the data copied to a new drive and the new drive is detected using Windows I would not use the problematic flash drive and make sure you backup the files to another device considering the importance of the photos. Even look to uploading them to the cloud such as OneDrive or Google Drive.

 

I'll back them up on the hard drive and to DVD. If I live to be 100 I will never upload anything to a cloud drive.






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