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No way to eject USB flash drive / hot swap...


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#1 Oxonsi

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 01:58 AM

I recently noticed a new problem with my Windows 10 x64:  the Safely Remove Hardware icon is missing from the system tray.  It always used to be there.

 

In the "Select which icons appear on the taskbar" settings, I have "Windows Explorer, Safely Remove Hardware and Eject Media" switched to on.  Makes no difference.  I followed instructions to run "RunDll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll", which does open the Safely Remove Hardware window, but the only hardware devices listed are two Asmedia 106x SATA Controllers.  No USB flash drive.

 

So apparently there is now no safe way for me to remove a USB flash drive, without shutting down or restarting the computer.  Not very convenient.  I also have an external USB 3.0 hard drive I use for backups that I like to be able to switch off.  No longer possible to safely turn off.

 

I also have hot swap bays in my machine, and a hot swappable hard drive.  I have been using a free program called "HotSwap!" to eject USB devices as well as hot swap the hard drive occasionally.  That no longer works either.  The icon is in the system tray as always, but now every time I request a hot swap, I receive a message stating, "The device XYZ cannot be uninstalled right now because the device requested a system restart."  Never used to say that.  Now always says that whether for an external USB device or the hot swappable hard drive.

 

I have not changed my USB 3.0 eXtensible Host Controller and Root Hub drivers.  Those are the appropriate ASMedia drivers, not the generic Microsoft drivers.  I have hot swap enabled in the BIOS.  None of this has changed...  Yet now, I cannot safely remove anything.

 

Is there anything I can do to restore the "safely remove" and "hot swap" functionality?  I don't understand what has changed to make none of this work.

 

Thanks for any info / advice!



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#2 dc3

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 12:07 PM

In the task bar over by the clock there is a chevron " ^ " which when you place your pointer over will display the message "Show hidden icons".  Click/tap on this and see if the icon for the safely remove is there.  This is how mine is seen.


Edited by dc3, 18 February 2017 - 12:07 PM.

Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#3 Oxonsi

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 12:40 PM

Thanks for your reply.  I have my system tray set to display all icons, so I don't have the chevron nor any hidden icons...

 

No, unfortunately, I think I have somehow developed a driver problem.  I think the USB flash drive should show up in the Safely Remove Hardware window when opened by running "RunDll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll".

 

And the program "HotSwap!" used to work for me as well.  Now it only says, "The device cannot be uninstalled right now because the device requested a system restart." when I try to use it to eject.

 

I'm not sure how or why all this happened.  I haven't changed the drivers, and I have seen any warning or error messages before all this started.  I'd use a System Restore point to go back in time, but I just recently deleted all old one as they accumulate over time and take up space, etc.

 

Let me know if you have any other ideas.  Thanks again!



#4 zainmax

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 01:08 PM

To safely remove the USB click on explorer.exe icon on taskbar, or simply open some a folder.
On the right you can see all the folders, drives, etc., as well as a USB drive(s). 
Right mouse click on that USB drive, what you want to remove and select "Eject". Everything is done.
To restore the icons that are lost, there is not likely any other option than a clean Windows installation.
At least I do not know any other method. Haven't found any recommendation what works. 


#5 dc3

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 01:12 PM

Or simply remove the USB device when the computer is turned off.


Family and loved ones will always be a priority in my daily life.  You never know when one will leave you.

 

 

 

 


#6 pnamajck

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 06:00 PM

control-panel … devices/printers … right-click  specific  usb-drive … "remove device" … click  "yes" (affirmation).  notably … this  works  with  usb-1 / usb-3  drives  and  iphone … probably  any  other  plug-n-play  device  connected  via  usb-port.  another  possibility,  oxonsi,  might  entail  performing  the  command  in  safe-mode … there's  also  command-shell  and  power-shell  to  be  propositioned.
 
in  hindsight,  oxonsi … you  might  wanna'  do  thorough  check  of  your  computer  for  contaminants  'n  malware … as  it  seems  something  may  be  reconfiguring  your  system (you really offer scant info).  i  can  appreciate  the  fact  that  you  just  recently  deleted  all  your  system-restore  points … to  that  i  surmise  murphy  strikes  yet  again.  just  don't  let  it  happen  again.  and  in  so  doing,  oxonsi … check  out  this  article  regarding  system-restore  points  via  different  location:

http://www.ghacks.net/2010/05/09/how-to-backup-system-restore-points/

 

good  luck!



#7 Oxonsi

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 06:26 PM

Thanks much for the replies.

 

Wow, right-clicking the drive in Explorer, and selecting Eject worked!  Not only that, it made the Safely Remove Hardware icon reappear in the system tray!

 

But all is not quite well yet.  The Safely Remove Icon is non-functional:  even with a USB flash drive in, clicking the right- or left- clicking the icon does nothing.  No context menu or option to eject anything.

 

And as before, HotSwap! is also non-functional.  I used to be able to use it to dismount USB devices as well as a hot swappable hard drive.  Now whatever I select to remove from its menu gives me the message, "... the device requested a system restart."  Always used to work.

 

Any ideas on how I might rectify those issues?  :warrior:

 

The reason I think it is driver related is that I recall when I first installed Windows 10, it defaulted to using generic Microsoft drivers for ASMedia USB 3.0 and SATA, and hot-swapping would not work until I replaced those with ASMedia drivers.

 

Have done recent scans with anti-malware tools:  Malwarebytes, Zemana, Emsisoft.  That all comes up clean...  The only things I've done recently is cleaning with CCleaner:  files and registry.  That has never caused a problem before, and I think it only deletes empty registry keys - should be safe?

 

Let me know if there is more info I can provide.

 

Thanks again!



#8 Oxonsi

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Posted 18 February 2017 - 07:53 PM

Well, the Safely Remove icon disappears from the system tray again after a reboot...  But that's OK.  There is a method to safely eject USB flash drives.

 

I'd still prefer if HotSwap! worked like it used to.  I always used if for ejecting USB drives, etc. as well as hot swapping.  Just not sure why it is not longer able to eject anything.  According to the documentation, it may be caused by, "the file system filter driver not handling the detach request appropriately but it is also caused by the file system itself."  It also says that it maybe due to antivirus program.  I noted that it seemed to require specific ASMedia drivers rather than generic Microsoft drivers.

 

I don't think anything has changed in those respects.  So not sure why it no longer works.

 

http://mt-naka.com/hotswap/index_enu.htm



#9 Oxonsi

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Posted 19 February 2017 - 11:16 PM

I received the suggestion to try a clean boot, using msconfig to disable non Microsoft services.  That revealed that a service is interfering with HotSwap!

 

After a lot of trial & error, I determined the ParagonMounter service, which is part of Extfs For Windows by Paragon Software caused the interference.  The software is nice:  allows one to read / write to a Linux Ext4 file system from within Windows.  But apparently one may lose hot swap functionality.

 

I did in fact install Extfs For Windows some days ago.  I never connected it when I later discovered my inability to hot swap.  For one thing, I don't have Extfs set to start with Windows, and I don't run it all of the time - only when I actually want to open my Linux partition from within Windows.  But what I didn't realize is that Extfs installs the ParagonMounter service, which is set to automatic startup by default...  I could set it to manual startup, but Extfs will not start the service, and it doesn't function without it.  So if I want to use Extfs, I basically need to have the ParagonMounter service set to automatic startup, and hot swapping won't work.

 

At least I now understand the problem.  Thanks very much for all the help!  :wizard:






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