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Solved: USB Stick issues

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Filmfun, May 1, 2010.

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  1. Filmfun

    Filmfun Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
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    Hello

    Two weeks ago I restored my laptop (Acer Extensa 5220, Vista Home Basic) to factory settings. I copied all my documents (folders, loose word/spreadsheets etc.)
    onto a USB stick.

    While the laptop was being restored, I had to urgently send some documents by email, so I used a friend's notebook,
    (HP Mini Windows 7 Starter), inserted the USB stick into it, and was able to attach the documents from the copies stored, and send.

    I didn't unplug the USB stick by the 'safely remove hardware' option (I accept now that perhaps I should have done) , but when my laptop was ready to use again, I inserted the USB stick in, everything was fine, and I copied a few select folders over, figuring I didn't needed to clutter up my hard drive with everything straight away, and I would add the rest in later.

    Today when I go to complete the copying, I find that although the laptop tells me that my USB stick is practically full
    it doesn't identify the particular folder anymore where the contents of 'My Documents' were stored i.e. this folder doesn't show up anymore when I open the USB stick.

    I understand that if you don't use the 'safely remove hardware' option when you unplug a USB stick, this can cause this issue, however I was able to re-insert at fine and copy over selected folders after I had removed it from the note book. It's just now the problem has manifested itself.

    Very grateful for any suggestions.

    Rob :)
     
  2. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2000
    Messages:
    9,185
    I would run a data recovery program on the flash drive. If no success, you could try running
    CHKDSK x: /R
    where you substitute your drive letter for the X.

    I guess you've learned the hard way.

    What is even more aggravating than having to go through 'safely remove' is when it simply will not give the 'safe' message. I get that a lot and I have to shut down the computer to play it safe.

    Another thing, when you backed your files to the USB drive and then destroyed the data on the hard disk, the USB flash drive became the only copy of your data.

    Quote from JohnWill: Data you have only one copy of is data you don't care about.

    I have a small shop. When I back up user data in anticipation of formatting or overwriting, I make two copies beforehand. So, when the data on the hard disk gets destroyed, there are still two copies.
     
  3. Filmfun

    Filmfun Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Hi Alex

    Firstly, thanks so much for your reply. :) This is the first time this kind of thing has happened - in the nature of my job, my laptop has been used to print off stuff from others' USB sticks and the users have not had problems when they've reinserted their USB back into their own computers. Also when I've transferred the USB stick between my laptop and desktop, again never encountered an issue. But I agree - you live and learn.

    I downloaded a freeware programme called 'Disk Digger' which was able to identify the items on my USB stick, and I transferred them to a folder on my desktop. When trying to open them up though, the text is now all in, what looks like, hieroglyphics, and I was using Windows default. I wonder if they are corrupted beyond repair, or whether there's a better freeware piece of software
    that can help.

    Very grateful for any more advice or suggestion you can offer.

    Rob
     
  4. Alex Ethridge

    Alex Ethridge

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2000
    Messages:
    9,185
    Google up the following:

    "data recovery" freeware

    Maybe you'll find what you are looking for.
     
  5. Filmfun

    Filmfun Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2010
    Messages:
    8
    Thanks Alex

    I did some research and found some software by Paretologic (being offered at special dealprice) and it seems to have recovered the majority of documents on my USB stick. Still a lot of work to be done (some documents have been split up in the recovery process etc.) but hopefully I can retrieve most of it.

    Thanks again
     
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