Why is My Flash Drive Unable to Play Videos?

Find the plausible reasons for this issue and the best solutions to get rid of it easily, all in the proceeding article.

Facing a problem playing videos from your flash drive? Video files are one of the most common sources of mass media communication. Not being able to play your important files can cause a magnitude of problems. Under such distressing times, you will need to learn how to get rid of this issue once and for all.

There are a number of different reasons that might result in you being unable to play videos stored in flash drive. This article aims to list the most likely causes for this problem. You can also find a handful of effective methods to play video files from a flash drive below. Finally, learn some efficient tips to select the right USB drive for yourself. Let’s begin!

Part 1: Reasons Why Flash Drive is Unable to Play Videos

If you are unable to play videos stored in a flash drive, you need to get to the root of the issue. There are a number of potential reasons that might be causing the issue. A few of them are listed below:

1. Incomplete File Transfer

One of the most common reasons for this problem is when your video file is not completely transferred from the flash drive. Incomplete file transfer means that you will not be able to access your files or play them in an intended manner. If this is, in fact, the case, you will need to redo the transfer process and wait for the video to move fully.

2. Corrupted Video File

Another major reason for you being unable to play videos stored in flash drive is corrupted files. There is a possibility that the video file you are trying to play has gone corrupt. Usually, damaged sectors on your storage media and viruses can cause file corruption. If this happens, you can try to repair and recover your corrupted file. In worst-case scenarios, you will have to redo the entire thing from scratch.

3. Corrupted or Damaged Flash Drive

Flash drives are generally great for storing and transferring data externally. But sometimes, a problem with the flash drive can cause it to stop working properly. If something goes wrong, the flash drive can go corrupt. Physical damage to the flash drive can also cause it to go rogue, meaning that you will not be able to access your stored files.

4. Improper Insertion of Flash Drive

Sometimes, the issue is not as distressing as it appears to be. It might be possible that the reason you are unable to play videos stored in flash drive is a result of your own inattention. If the flash drive is not inserted properly into the computer, your system will not be able to read it properly. You can try reinserting the flash drive and see if the issue persists.

Tips: Learn the best ways to Format and Unformat Flash Drive

Part 2: How Do I Transfer a Video from a Flash Drive to My Computer?

Transferring a file from a flash drive to the computer is a relatively simple task. Following the steps given below, you can transfer virtually any type of file format from your flash drive to your computer. The process involves only a few simple clicks, as explained below:

Step 1: Firstly, insert your flash drive into your computer’s USB port. Open “File Explorer” on your computer. From the left panel, tap on "This PC."

open this pc from file explorer

Step 2: In the “This PC” window, you will see a “Devices and drives” section. Find your flash drive under it. Double-click the USB drive to view its contents. Select the video files that you wish to transfer from your flash drive.

access usb data

Step 3: Once you have selected the video, go to the “Home” tab at the top. Click on the “Move to” option. From the dropdown menu, find and click on "Choose location."

tap on move to option

Step 4: Now select the place or folder where you want to move your video file(s). Finally, tap on the “Move” button to finish the process. Your video file will be transferred from the flash drive to your chosen location.

click on move button

Part 3: How Do I Play a Video from a Flash Drive?

Looking for ways to play videos from a flash drive? You can find the easiest methods to do so, along with their detailed description below:

Method 1: Directly from Flash Drive

The quickest way to play a video is to play it from the flash drive itself directly. You can do this by following the steps mentioned below:

Step 1: To begin with, connect your flash drive to your computer. Launch “File Explorer” on your computer screen and navigate to “This PC” from the left pane.

access this pc option

Step 2: Under the "Devices and drives" section in "This PC," search for your USB flash drive. Double-tap on it to reveal the contents that lie in your flash drive.

amr audio format

Step 3: Now, find the video that you wish to play from your USB drive. Double-click on it, and this will play your video in your default chosen media player on the computer.

tap on video to play

Method 2: By Using a Media Player

Another method to play a video from a flash drive is by using a media player. Computers have a media player generally set by default. The most common media player for Windows which can be used to play video files is the VLC Media Player.

VLC is a free and open-source multimedia player that is well-known for its versatile usage and other capabilities. VLC can play virtually any multimedia file with its extensive support for a range of file formats. It also offers file conversion and some manual editing options. You can even create bookmarks for playlists can play videos as they are downloading.

You can play your video using a VLC media player by following these steps:

Step 1: Find and launch the VLC media player on your computer. From the top of the program’s interface, search for the “Media” tab and click on it.

access media tab

Step 2: From the dropdown menu under the “Media” tab, click on "Open File." You can also use the keyboard shortcut "Ctrl + O" for this purpose.

tap on open file

Step 3: From the dialogue box that pops up, you can select the location of your video. In this case, search for your USB flash drive and click on it to open its contents.

access usb video files

Step 4: Now select your video from the USB drive and click on "Open." VLC will play the selected video file for you. Conversely, you can also select multiple video files, and the VLC media player will play them in the selected order.

click on open button

Part 4: Tips to Select a Good USB Drive

Selecting the perfect USB flash drive can be an overwhelming task. With so many different kinds of flash drive available in the market, how do you know which one to choose? To make things easier for you, we have compiled a list of factors that you would need to consider before choosing a USB drive. Go through the following tips and make an informed decision regarding your USB:

tips for selecting usb

1. Transferring Speed

USB drives come in a variety of speeds and chip formats. The most common ones are USB 2.0 and USB 3.0. USB 2.0 is well-suited for simple files and small storage drives. But if you are aiming for large and multiple file transfer, you will need USB 3.0. USB 3.0 has a ten times faster transfer rate than USB 3.0 flash drives. You can choose one as suited for your needs.

2. Hardware Compatibility

Hardware compatibility is an important aspect that needs to be considered while selecting a USB flash drive. Although most flash drives can connect to a range of devices, you still need to check your hardware before buying one. Particularly modern computers, including MacBook, are choosing to omit the standard USB ports from their devices. You can opt for dual connector USB flash drives that support both USB-A and USB-C connector options.

Generally, the USB ports on computers are either compatible with USB 2.0 or USB 3.0 flash drives. Having a USB 2.0 port means that you will still be able to connect a USB 3.0 flash drive, but it will transfer data at a 2.0 rate.

3. USB Storage Capacity

USB drives have remarkable storage capacities. These days, USB flash drives come with a wide variety of storage options. This can range from 512 MBs to even 1 TB now. The most common USB flash drives come in 2 GB, 8 GB, 16 GB, and 32 GB. You can choose one based on the amount of storage you require.

4. Style and Usage

USB flash drives come in several different styles and sizes. From the classic two-inches drives to key-shaped USBs, there are several options to choose from. You can match your flash drive to your branding and act accordingly. You can also choose a flash drive based on your intended use.

5. Price

Similar to other products, the cost is the ultimate deciding factor when it comes to USB flash drives. Prices generally vary between vendors. Custom flash drives and those with large storage capacities tend to be a little pricey. You can select one based on your allocated budget and also look around for different prices.

Wrapping Up

Being unable to play videos stored in flash drive is a commonly arising problem. After knowing the likely reasons behind the issue, you can now check to see what might be causing it. Following the simple steps mentioned above, you can transfer videos from your flash drive to your computer with remarkable ease.

Playing a video file from a flash drive is also made easy with the methods mentioned above. Lastly, remember to keep in mind the above-mentioned tips and guidelines when choosing a USB drive. Although relatively simple advice, these tips can play a major part in your data transferring needs.