Originally Posted by fatbird OK – after an hour or so of faffing around :knock: , I think that I have found a possible solution . The problem seems to be something to do with Microsoft’s SP2 ! Here’s what worked for me (sorry for the *****’s Guide approach, but I used to :hotbounce hate it :hotbounce when I used forums and couldn’t understand what the technobabble meant!): - Start > Run > type ‘regedit’ (without the speachmarks) > Enter - Single-click on ‘My Computer’ > File > Export > save it to the Desktop (Always best to have a backup!!) - Go to the following: My Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\StorageDeviceP olicies *There seems to be some spaces here in 'StorageDevicePolicies' in the text above, there shouldn't be, OK* - Double click on the string ‘WriteProtect’ and change the ‘Value Data’ box to ‘0’ - Then: File > Export > save somewhere useful as something like ‘StorageDevicePolicies001.reg’ - You also need to do this for the strings in any folders called ‘ControlSet***’ (* = any Digit, i.e. 001, 002) – for example: Everything is the same, just change ‘CurrentControlSet’ to ‘ControlSet***’ My Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\StorageDevicePolic ies *There seems to be some spaces here in 'StorageDevicePolicies' in the text above, there shouldn't be, OK* - Save these to the same place as before as ‘StorageDevicePolicies00*’ The saves are in case it reverts at a later date, just double click (saying ‘yes’ to importing these to the registry) on all of the files and it will all work again! YOU are a legend mate 4hrs scrolling through useless help topics, i knew it was a windows error and now the answer, all my control settings for groups 1 3 4 were set to 1 not 0!!!! all 5 of the usb sticks i have bought now work, I have xp sp3. THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!