Some USB thumb read unformatted only on XP?

February 21, 2011 at 13:42:48
Specs: Windows XP, Windows 7
I can't seem to find this problem addressed anywhere:

I have an XP laptop and a Win7 desktop.

I have several USB flash/thumb drives.

The Win7 desktop always reads them all correctly; they are all formatted and contain data.

There is one thumb drive (a new TDK 8GB) that the XP laptop consistently reads as unformatted (doesn't see the data asks if I want to format).

The drive works fine in all other non-XP machines. All other drives work fine on this XP laptop.

There's clearly some communication error in the systems between this drive and XP.

Anyone have any help?

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February 21, 2011 at 14:31:26
Your problem probably has nothing to do with the operating system.

USB drives are seen as not formatted when you know they were or not detected at all for several common reasons.

Troubleshooting USB device problems including for flash drives, external drives, memory cards.
See Response 1:

Check that out first.

If you have a desktop computer, Note that I answered a Topic on this site where a guy had an external drive, which does require the full 500ma, connected to a port on the back of a desktop case - it would not work properly when a webcam was in the port next to it, but it worked fine when the webcam was unplugged. Ports on the back of a desktop case often have two ports connected to the same USB controller module that are ports one above the other - you could try connecting the flash drive to one of those and leaving the other un-used.

Examine the USB port and the USB plug on the flash drive to see whether it's damaged.
E.g. Bent - such that the fit of the plug is loose - stretched outer metal shell in the port, squished metal outer shell on a plug; bent or loose contacts in the port or plug, the plastic blocking plug that prevents you from plugging in a USB plug upside down is loose or missing.

If you can't access data on the drive that you know was there previously, or if it no longer shows up in Computer or My Computer or Windows Explorer, and you're sure it's plugged into a USB port it should work with for sure........

If you have not dropped the drive or otherwise damaged it, your problem was probably caused by you NOT clicking on the Safely Remove Hardware icon in your Taskbar and STOPping accessing the drive BEFORE you unplugged the drive while Windows was running.
There are several programs that you could try that will probably fix your problem.

Specifically, links to some programs that can repair the data damage are here -
see response 2:

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