USB Not Recognized

By xybciba
May 19, 2009
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  1. Hi I'd first like to say I'm computer illiterate. :( I had a certain incident with my USB today and I was hoping someone could help.

    I was just saving work on my 8GB Corsair Flash Voyager USB today and the next time I looked at it, it was no longer responding (blue light wasn't flashing either). I had it plugged into my computer, and the comp made recognition sounds whenever I replugged the USB in or took it out, but my USB is now called "Removable disk (F)". When I click it, it says "Please insert disk into removable drive", yet my USB is plugged in. I tried it on other computers and it didn't work either. When I go to properties, the Pie Chart says Used Space 0 bytes, Free Space 0 bytes. Is there anything I can do to recover my files? I never thought this would happen, so ever since my computer had a hacker, I moved all my files from seven years ago to now onto that USB. O_O I know, I want to shoot myself. But if someone can possibly help me, that would be great! :)
  2. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,366   +167

    Flash drives are very handy and have their uses.. And sorry you learned the hard way but NEVER use them as a trusted backup/storage of important files as they are too prone to fail. (IMHO use an external USB hard drive that comes with its own AC adapter is the choice) And even then always have two copies on physically separate drives (e.g. your hard drive plus the backup drive). As ANY device (no matter how good and who mfrs it, can fail. Is just a matter of MTF (mean time to failure) for a device)

    That said: The fact it fails across different machine is not a good sign.

    I'd suggest trying (on a couple different machines)

    Approach #1
    Unplug EVERY USB device from the computer. ONLY plug your flash driver directly into the computer USB port.

    Approach #2
    You require a powered USB hub for this (i.e. a USB hub that comes with its own AC adapter). This time ONLY plug the powered HUB (with AC adapter also plugged in) into a computer port. Then ONLY plug your flash drive into the USB hub

    If all else, fails it will cost you $$$$ to find a service that will physically open the flash and remove the data for you.
  3. xybciba

    xybciba Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    Thanks. Is this what you said here really possible? I might have to research the price and try that, or get over the loss.

    I tried approach 1 but it still didn't work. I'm not sure about 2.
  4. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,366   +167

    I;ve seen #2 sometimes work (is sometimes a matter of gettin a good, clean, consistent power interface). If all else fails, search online and/or Private Message: xehqter

    As he runs that sort of service. but do alook around for others as well
  5. NetCablesPlus

    NetCablesPlus TechSpot Maniac Posts: 480

    Along the lines of LookinAround's suggestion #2, you might try a USB repeater cable if the powered hub does not work. Plug the male end into the computer and plug you flash drive into the female end. They are pretty cheap these days (<$20) and worth a shot if you are going to spend $$$$ for a recovery service.
  6. xehqter

    xehqter Newcomer, in training Posts: 85

    This month I’ve seen a spike in Consair Flash Voyagers, the data is recoverable. Granted the Voyagers are a pain in the neck to work on because they coat the PCB in silicon to water proof it.

    Usually the 0MB issue is a problem on the NAND side. Usually from corruption in the translation tables or modules preventing the controller from fully booting. Corruption can occur from improperly removing the flash drive during a write cycle or from aging/failing NAND memory. Frequently writing to files or running files which automatically make updates to the file like database programs (ie: quickbooks) can cause the memory to fail over time. When NAND memory fails bits in certain banks or sectors will randomly switch values. The data is almost always recoverable however there may be some bit level damage to the data. Documents are usually unaffected, pictures may have color shift, and executable or compressed files may not work. It’s very arbitrary to the area where the file was stored in the chip.

    You can check out my company here:
    http://www.aplusperfect.com/usb-flash-drive-data-recovery
  7. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,366   +167

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