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Usb Thumb Drive Write Protection Removal Unable to remove write-protection on USB Thumb Drive

#1 User is offline   bbotts 

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Posted 07 April 2011 - 09:55 AM

I was backing up files to a Lexar 4GB USB Thumb drive using Backup Maker Professional Edition

under my updated Windows XP desktop when I had to cancel the job because there was not enough space on the

drive. After Backup Maker ended, I safely removed the drive from the system. Later, when I inserted

the same drive, Windows Explorer recognized it with only 1 file left from the aborted BackUp

Maker. Now, I cannot copy, delete, or format the drive, as it gives me the message,

"Disk is write protected. Remove write protection or use another disk."

I have the same problem when I insert the drive on my Windows 7 laptop, so the write protect is

somewhere on the drive. The drive does not have a write-protection hardware switch on it.

BackUp Maker support told me it was not caused by their software and to Google to find a fix for

it. I tried the Run / cmd attribute, and format commands but have been unable to fix it.

Is there a special utility or Run command with appropriate parameters that will reset the drive

for writing? Or as one of the suggestions in my Google search, should I "Just buy another flash

drive. They're cheap now."

Thanks
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#2 User is offline   crazy4laptops 

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 09:29 AM

That may be a tricky situation....

Some flashdrives you can hack back to writeable using linux command line and/or using Gparted

Have you tried to format your drive using disk management (diskmgmt.msc) in windows?
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#3 User is offline   bbotts 

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Posted 08 April 2011 - 11:31 AM

View Postcrazy4laptops, on 08 April 2011 - 09:29 AM, said:

That may be a tricky situation....

Some flashdrives you can hack back to writeable using linux command line and/or using Gparted

Have you tried to format your drive using disk management (diskmgmt.msc) in windows?


I just tried diskmgmt.msc but still was unable to format because media is write-protected.

I am not familiar with linux command line or Gparted. Are they available under Windows XP or Windows 7?

Thanks for your help.
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#4 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 07:59 AM

Hi, Bbotts.

How old is the drive?

As I understand it, at least theoretically, when a flash drive wears out, it becomes read-only. I should mention that I've never seen that happen, nor heard from anyone who's actually had it happen. But it is possible if you've written to the drive enough times.

Lincoln
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#5 User is offline   bbotts 

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 09:42 AM

I purchased the Lexar 4GB drive June 6, 2010, and have not used it excessively, about once every third week to backup personal files. Since the Read-Only drive attribute is on the drive on 2 different PCs, and is apparently not correctable with software, I'm guessing it's a drive-hardware problem. Does that sound reasonable?

I'm also assuming there are no disk diagnostic utilities to check USB thumb drives.

Again, thanks for your input.

bbotts
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#6 User is offline   Flashorn 

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 03:18 PM

Hey Bbotts !

Could you give this a try pls.

http://en.kioskea.ne...on-on-pen-drive

don't know how well it works or if it will work at all for you but, you won't know
unless you try right?

I just bought a Lexar 16 Gig flash drive to write movies too so I won't have to
burn them to DVD anymore but, to tell you the truth, they are SO slow that
this is going to be the last one I buy from Lexar. I thought I would save a few
bucks but, my time is worth more. I'll stick with SanDisk from now on.

Just thought of something you might also try. Go to :
Start > Control Panel > Device Manager (XP might be different) OR
Start > My Computer : Right Click on it and choose "Properties" .
In the pop-up , look for Hardware tab at the top and click on Device Manager.

Now, once Device Manager comes up, locate your Lexar drive. Right Click
and choose Uninstall. Unplug Lexar and Re-Start. Once re-started, plug in
Lexar and wait for driver to load. See if this fixes your problem.


FLASHORN.

This post has been edited by Flashorn: 10 April 2011 - 03:31 PM

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#7 User is offline   AgentF 

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Posted 10 April 2011 - 08:59 PM

I remember seeing some flash drives have a small switch on them to disable write abilities, just like SD cards of today and floppy disks of long ago. It's not too common but worth a thought. I looked at the 13 models sold on Lexar's website and didn't see the feature on any of them. Do you know the model name, or the store and approximate price you paid for?
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#8 User is offline   LincolnSpector 

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 07:56 AM

View Postbbotts, on 10 April 2011 - 09:42 AM, said:

I purchased the Lexar 4GB drive June 6, 2010, and have not used it excessively, about once every third week to backup personal files. Since the Read-Only drive attribute is on the drive on 2 different PCs, and is apparently not correctable with software, I'm guessing it's a drive-hardware problem. Does that sound reasonable?

I'm also assuming there are no disk diagnostic utilities to check USB thumb drives.

Again, thanks for your input.

bbotts

It shouldn't have warn out that soon. Not by a long shot.

I agree that it's a problem with the drive, not the PC.

Lincoln


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#9 User is offline   bbotts 

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 12:28 PM

FLASHORN:
I tried the regedit suggestion, but could not find the specified path in XP or Win 7. Also, I could not Edit/Find a "WriteProtect" entry or variations of it. I then tried the Device / Uninstall, then reconnect/install, but still got the Write Protected message. Thanks for the tips, but am still write-less.
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#10 User is offline   bbotts 

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 12:47 PM

View PostAgentF, on 10 April 2011 - 08:59 PM, said:

I remember seeing some flash drives have a small switch on them to disable write abilities, just like SD cards of today and floppy disks of long ago. It's not too common but worth a thought. I looked at the 13 models sold on Lexar's website and didn't see the feature on any of them. Do you know the model name, or the store and approximate price you paid for?


The device does not have a switch, other than the push/pull switch on the side to extend/retract the connection when attaching to the USB port. The numbers on the back of the drive: LJDRX4GB-000-1006L N12610

I paid about $12 each, for 3, which I've been rotating for my backups.
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#11 User is offline   AgentF 

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Posted 11 April 2011 - 08:56 PM

View Postbbotts, on 11 April 2011 - 12:47 PM, said:

The device does not have a switch, other than the push/pull switch on the side to extend/retract the connection when attaching to the USB port. The numbers on the back of the drive: LJDRX4GB-000-1006L N12610

I paid about $12 each, for 3, which I've been rotating for my backups.

That sounds like the Lexar JumpDrive Retrax or something very similar, which, your right, doesn't have a switch like that. I'll keep an eye on this thread for a while, but I don't have anything more at this time. Hopefully someone else around here can help you out.
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