Wondershare Recoverit

USB Drive Data Recovery

  • Recovers deleted or lost files USB Flash drive effectively, safely and completely.
  • Supports data recovery from 500+ data loss scenarios, including computer crash, partition loss, accidental human error, etc.
  • Supports 1000+ file formats recovery with a high success rate and without any quality loss.
Free Download Free Download Free Download Learn More >
file recovery

How to Fix USB Drive Not Detected on Windows

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

Jun 14, 2024 • Filed to: Take Data Backup • Proven solutions

Corrupted USB Flash Drive is a common issue in windows 10/8/7? If you have been a victim, it would help if you knew how to fix USB flash drive not detected, without losing data. This post explains the important USB flash drive repair tips. In the end, we share an effective data recovery method that works on corrupted USB flash drives. Firstly, we evaluate the different techniques for dead USB flash drive repair.

Part 1: What Causes Corrupted USB Drives?

Here are some reasons you may be experiencing the “USB drive not recognized” error message on windows 10/8/ 7.

usb device not recognized

1. A Bad USB Cable

Are you using a USB Type-C cable to connect a Flash drive to your computer? The USB Type-C brings a new universal connector to windows computers. However, be aware that many USB-C cables could malfunction, leading to a “USB flash drive not detected” error message.

2. Virus / Malware

Viruses in your USB Flash drive or the computer could be the reason you experience the “USB device not detected” error message. Therefore, you may first scan and clean the USB flash drive, and retry reading it from your computer. Alternatively, you may try the USB flash drive on a different computer. If the second computer detects the USB flash drive, it is clear that the computer is infected, and you need to scan and clean to avoid experiencing the same issue again. Note that the viruses could corrupt the USB driver, resulting in the “USB flash drive not detected” error.

3. Using An Outdated USB Driver

The universal serial bus driver is responsible for establishing and supporting the communication between the computer and the USB flash drive. Therefore, if the USB flash drive is not detected on a Windows computer, the problem could be outdated USB drivers.

4. USB Bad Sectors

A bad sector refers to the area of the USB drive that cannot be accessed, written, or read. Therefore, in the case of a USB flash drive with a bad sector, windows will not recognize it. In that regard, you will be required to use the flash drive repair utility to recover the data. Natural aging and using none standard USB flash drives are other examples of hard bad sectors. The hard bad sector is an issue that users can prevent.

The soft bad sector is a logical problem and often occurs due to the software or a data error. Therefore, soft bad sectors could be fixed by using the flash drive repair utility. Some common signs of a USB with a bad sector include:

a) Can’t read from the source file or disk
b) Location is not available
c) Unable to complete the format
d) Disk read error has occurred

5. Casual Usage of the USB Flash Drive

When it comes to usage of USB flash drives, the right procedure is to select the “Eject Media” option.

how to eject usb flash drive on windows

Unfortunately, many Windows users have ignored this advisory, resulting in corrupted hardware. Therefore, to avoid the need for USB flash drive repair more often, experts recommend that users of flash drives should avoid unplugging the USB flash drive without following the right procedures.

6. USB Drive Mechanical Issue

The USB drive on your desktop computer could malfunction. Therefore, when a windows user inserts the USB flash drive onto the drive, the USB flash drives the computer does not recognize the USB flash drive. To ascertain the issue, you may insert the USB flash drive on another USB drive or computer.

Therefore, we have looked at the six common reasons why the USB drive might have malfunctioned. Now, we will look at the different solutions to the problems highlighted above. Let us get started.

Part 2: Recommended Solutions to Fix USB Flash Drive

1. Change the USB Cable

If you are using the USB Type-C cable, it could be faulty hence; you are not accessing the USB flash disk on your computer. In that regard, we recommend that you try a different cable. Alternatively, you may connect the USB flash drive directly to your computer, to see if it is working.

2. Restart the Computer

Most of the windows computers’ hardware issues can be resolved by simply restarting the computer. In some cases, the computer BIOS may fail to read the new device. Therefore, a quick approach to fix the USB drive is simply restarting the computer. Here are the steps to follow:

Step 1. Ensure all open applications or running programs are closed

Step 2. Click on the start menu and select the “restart” option

Step 3. After the computer reboots, insert the USB flash drive into the PC to check if you can access the files on your USB flash drive.

restart the computer

3. Scan the USB Flash Drive for Logical Issues

One of the approaches of how to fix a USB flash drive not detected is by scanning the USB drive using Windows 10. Follow the following steps to scan the USB flash drive.

Step 1. Insert the USB flash disk into the computer’s USB port.

Step 2. Navigate to the USB flash disk icon under the “my computer” icon list

Locating the usb drive

Step 3. Right-Click under the USB flash disk option and select the “properties” option by left clicking.

where to find the usb drive  properties option

Step 4. Select the option named “tools” by left-clicking

where to find the tools option

Step 5. Tap on the “check” option and let your computer do the task of scanning

Step 6. Finally, right-click the USB flash drive and click on eject to safely disconnect the drive from the computer.

The windows USB repair tool we have looked at may help in detecting the USB flash drive. However, the USB repair tool on windows may not be effective when it comes to restoring the files that you may have lost.

4. Scan the USB Flash Disk for Virus / Malware

A virus on your USB flash disk should be cleaned to ensure the computer detects the flash disk. Therefore, these steps to scan the flash disk for viruses:

Step 1. Insert the USB flash disk into the computer’s USB port.

Step 2. Navigate to the USB flash disk icon under the “my computer” icon list

Step 3. Right-Click under the USB flash disk option and select the “scan with windows defender” option

Step 4. After the scan is complete, click on Eject to remove the USB flash disk safely.

You may use the commercial antivirus program to scan the USB Flash disk for viruses. Make sure you are using an effective antivirus to clean the USB flash disk.

5. Updating the Disk Drivers

Outdated disk drivers should be up to date to avoid malfunctioning when you add a new USB flash disk. While the driver updates are automatically downloaded through regular windows updates, installation of the drivers could require manual initialization. Therefore, follow the steps outlined here to update the USB port drivers.

Step 1. Log in to the computer using the Administrator account

Step 2. Open the Run dialog using the shortcut “Winkey+R”

Step 3. Enter the Command, “devmgmt.msc” and press Enter to open the device manager

How to start windows device manager

Step 4. Double click to expand “disk drives”

how to expand the disk drives option

Step 5. Right Click the Disk Driver to update the driver

how to run drive drivers update automatically

how to update drivers manually

Step 6. Allow the computer to search and install the drivers and test if the USB flash disk works now.

6. Run Chkdsk Command

Here are the steps to follow.

Step 1. Connect the corrupted flash drive to your PC

Step 2. On your computer press the shortcut “Winkey+R”

Step 3. A new command prompt window opens

Step 4. Type the command chkdsk /x /f/ g: and press enter. Note that the letter H should be the drive with your corrupted USB flash disk.

how to run chkdsk command

The above USB flash drive repair utility will show if your USB flash drive has any problems and requires immediate action.

We have looked at the procedures for how to fix USB flash drive not detected. Therefore, if you have always wanted to know how to repair my USB drive, the USB repair tools we have outlined here shall help you. A corrupted USB drive poses the threat of data loss. Therefore, it helps if you know how to recover data from the USB drive.

Part 3: How to Recover Data from USB Drive

Therefore, after trying the flash drive repair utility successfully, you may want to recover any lost data. Wondershare Recoverit program for windows provides a simple approach to recover data from the USB drive. Here are the three steps to recover data from a USB drive simply.

Step 1. Selecting the Location

external drive data recovery

Step 2. The Scanning Procedure

external drive scan

Step 3. Recover the Lost Data

external drive preview


If you have been wondering how to repair my USB drive, you have different alternative methods. Further, we have explained how to recover data after running the flash drive repair utility. You never know when you may need the above handy approaches to fix USB drive and recover lost data. Therefore, it helps to familiarize yourself to the procedures.

Recoverit author

Amy Dennis

staff Editor

Home > Resources > Take Data Backup > How to Fix USB Drive Not Detected on Windows