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USB Drives Not Appearing in 'My Computer' - Please Help! (Solved!)

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
When I plug a USB flash drive into my computer, it makes the normal sound like when a USB device is plugged in but the USB drive doesn't appear in the Windows Explorer. All other USB devices seem to function properly (headset, mouse, keyboard, bluetooth adapter, etc.). My OS is Windows 7 x64.

These are the things I have tried so far:
  • Different ports (USB drives still don't appear, regardless of port).
  • Different USB drives (no USB drives show up).
  • Different computer (USB drives connect fine to my laptop, so I think the drives themselves can be ruled out as the problem).
  • 'Uninstalling' the USB drive through Device Manager, restarting Windows, and plugging the drive back in (the device drivers re-install successfully but the drive still doesn't show up).
  • Updating the device drivers (Windows says the drivers are up to date).
  • Using Disk Management to 'change drive letters and path' (Returns an error: "The operation failed to complete because the Disk Management console view is not up to date...", even though Windows is fully up to date).
  • Using DiskPart to manually assign a letter to the drive (the USB drives don't show up when I enter "list volume" so it won't allow me to select the volume on the USB drive).
  • Manually entering the drive address into the address bar (D:\, E:\, F:\, etc. No matter what letter I use, it returns the error: "Windows can't find 'E:\'. Check spelling and try again.").
I'm at my wit's end and I don't know what else to try. What would cause this problem to randomly appear?
 

tcsenter

Lifer
Sep 7, 2001
17,848
24
81
Yeah I have an older post about similar problem cropping up on a couple of my computers running W7. Removable drives that appear to be "properly" formatted or even had previously been plugged into the system without any problem, stop getting assigned a drive letter and do not appear in My Computer/Explorer even after waiting for any antivirus/malware security product to finish scanning the volume and release it back to Windows. The solutions proposed in that thread did not resolve it. So I reinstalled Windows, latest drivers, and such, which solved it for me (so far).
 
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antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
Check USB version 2.0 or 3.0.
They have differences
USB 3.0 in 3.0 ports does not show up. USB 3.0 in 2.0 ports does not show up. USB 2.0 in 3.0 ports does not show up. And lastly, USB 2.0 in 2.0 ports does not show up. USB version is not the issue.

WAG Reinstall motherboard USB drivers.
"WAG"?

Also, if it was the motherboard USB drivers, wouldn't ALL my USB devices be malfunctioning? Keep in mind, it is only USB removable drives that are affected. My wireless headset, bluetooth adapter, and Dualshock 4 controller all work fine.
 

Elixer

Lifer
May 7, 2002
10,376
762
126
Run sfc.exe /SCANNOW on a elevated command prompt.
Do you have any AV blocking enable as well?
 

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
Run sfc.exe /SCANNOW on a elevated command prompt.
Do you have any AV blocking enable as well?
I just ran sfc /scannow. After completing, it said "Windows Resource Protection did not find any integrity violations."

I also tried disabling my antivirus (Avira Pro) and connecting a USB drive. Still nothing.

I just remembered, about a week or two ago, I had to change the power options to never turn off hard disks because my storage HDD was causing the system to hang either when it woke up or when it failed to wake up. For a couple days before that, it would occasionally hang and the only way to recover was a hard reset. Since changing the power options, the hanging has ceased entirely. Is it possible one of the hard resets is responsible for the USB issue? It seems like if that was the case, sfc /scannow would have detected something, which it did not.
 

TeeJay1952

Golden Member
May 28, 2004
1,531
179
106
WAG = Wild Ass Guess

It is all ones and zeros on a device that will fail. It is a house of cards and when an unknown card is removed we must rebuild.
 

Ketchup

Elite Member
Sep 1, 2002
14,494
220
106
Is this a new computer or an older system? If older, is the problem new or has it always been there?

Are Windows Updates current?
 

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
Is this a new computer or an older system? If older, is the problem new or has it always been there?

Are Windows Updates current?
The hardware components are from 2011 but it was last reformatted in March 2016, so this install of Windows 7 is less than a year old. The problem started out of the blue between 1 and 2 weeks ago. Yes, Windows updates are current.
 

Ketchup

Elite Member
Sep 1, 2002
14,494
220
106
Have you tried the two USB 3.0 ports to see if they react any differently than the USB 2.0 ports. Is anything in device manager showing yellow or red?
 

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
Have you tried the two USB 3.0 ports to see if they react any differently than the USB 2.0 ports. Is anything in device manager showing yellow or red?
I have tried ALL the ports, USB 2.0 and 3.0. It makes no difference. Nothing in the device manager is yellow or red. The strange part is the usb drives show up in the device manager, but they don't appear in windows explorer.
 

Ketchup

Elite Member
Sep 1, 2002
14,494
220
106
Do they show up as volumes in Disk Management? Could it just be a drive-letter issue?
I had that happen in Windows 8 before (as well as server OSs). Went in and gave them letters and everything was fine. Don't think I have even seen that in 7, but won't say it's not possible either.
 

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
I had that happen in Windows 8 before (as well as server OSs). Went in and gave them letters and everything was fine. Don't think I have even seen that in 7, but won't say it's not possible either.
Manually assigning drive letters is one of the first things I tried; however, none of the usb drives show up in disk management even though they appear in the device manager. Nothing about this behavior makes any sense.
 

tcsenter

Lifer
Sep 7, 2001
17,848
24
81
Manually assigning drive letters is one of the first things I tried; however, none of the usb drives show up in disk management even though they appear in the device manager. Nothing about this behavior makes any sense.
This ASUS board has USB 2.0 controllers built into the AMD chipset and the USB 3.0 is provided by Renesas (formerly NEC) uPD720200 external chip. When you reinstalled Windows last year, did you get chipset drivers from ASUS or direct from AMD?

First I would just try uninstalling the AMD chipset drivers via Programs and Features, check for and uninstall any USB 3.0 drivers (branded ASUS or Renesas) there as well, restart the system then reinstalling the drivers. If you obtained drivers from ASUS they are very dated so let's use these newer ones (I uploaded the Renesas stuff to my own server space):

AMD Chipset Drivers (W7x64)

Renesas uPD720200 USB 3.0 Drivers v2.1.39

You might try updating the firmware of the Renesas controller also, before uninstalling the present drivers. There were some potentially relevant fixes and unless you did this before, it is certain the present firmware is several releases behind:

Renesas uPD720200 Firmware 3.0.3.4

If you encounter an error when trying the firmware updater above, there is a remark in the release notes that implies it might not update unless the base firmware level is at least 3.0.2.8, so here that is:

uPD720200 Firmware 3.0.2.8

Of course, prior to removing drivers/software, disconnect ALL USB devices except for mouse, which should be plugged to a rear USB 2.0 port with nothing in the 3.0 ports. After everything is updated/reinstalled, then start connecting your USB devices, checking that each is properly installed and works (and restarting the PC if prompted) before plugging the next. Hope that helps.
 
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Elixer

Lifer
May 7, 2002
10,376
762
126
I would boot with a linux pen/flash drive, and see if that works.
If so, in that OS, plug in other devices, and see if it can be seen or not.
 

Rifter

Lifer
Oct 9, 1999
11,518
747
126
I would boot with a linux pen/flash drive, and see if that works.
If so, in that OS, plug in other devices, and see if it can be seen or not.
I agree, try and eliminate windows as the issue, if things work great using live cd/usb then the issue is with windows software, if live OS has same issue then its a hardware issue with the mobos usb ports.
 

tcsenter

Lifer
Sep 7, 2001
17,848
24
81
At least update the firmwares though before trying with Live OS, since there are numerous reports of similar glitches that were solved in the firmware updates. Then try testing with Live OS.
 

antiusername

Junior Member
Feb 10, 2017
8
0
1
I FIXED IT!

I opened regedit, went to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices and deleted all entries containing "U.S.B.S.T.O.R..." in the right side of the value data box. Rebooted, plugged in a USB drive and it instantly showed up in Windows Explorer. I'm so glad to have this out of my hair.

Now, how do I mark this as "solved"?
 

Ketchup

Elite Member
Sep 1, 2002
14,494
220
106
That is great to hear! This forum doesn't do the 'Solved' thing. With all the other changes, I am a little surprised they don't.
 

corkyg

Elite Member | Peripherals
Super Moderator
Mar 4, 2000
27,370
237
106
I FIXED IT!

I opened regedit, went to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\MountedDevices and deleted all entries containing "U.S.B.S.T.O.R..." in the right side of the value data box. Rebooted, plugged in a USB drive and it instantly showed up in Windows Explorer. I'm so glad to have this out of my hair.

Now, how do I mark this as "solved"?
Done! Edit the title.
 
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