How to repair USB stick | Solution in 3 steps

Sometimes the inevitable happens, and after so much use of our pen drive or USB memory, it ends up failing. This can be translated in several ways: it does not read the contents of the disk, the PC does not recognize the pen drive, or we simply have trouble opening some stored files. In today’s tutorial, we will see how to solve it and learn to repair USB stick through 3 simple techniques.

A basic guide to repair USB stick

The first thing we have to assess is the type of failure that our storage device has suffered: it is not the same as a software failure (it does not read the contents of the disk) that a hardware failure (it has received a blow or it has been wet etc.). ).

In my case, I had a pen drive that I had used to install a portable version of Android for PC, which finally ended up giving several errors. The file system had been shattered and I was not even allowed to format the disk. Do you want to know how I solved it?

In the following guide, we will see 3 different methods to repair a damaged USB disk. It is recommended to start with the first one, and if it does not work, try the second and the third method (the latter is the most effective).

To take these 3 tests to good port we will need:

  • A PC with Windows (XP / 7 / 8.1 / 10).
  • The pen drive damaged. Also valid for SD or micro SD memories (if we have an adapter to connect them to the PC).
  • You want to salse a little.

1 # Use the CHKDSK command to repair errors on the diskrepair USB stick

The first thing we will do is connect the USB memory to a Windows PC. Once the system recognizes the disk, we will go to “Start -> Execute”, write the command “cmd” (without quotes) and press enter. In the case of Windows 10, we can type this command in Cortana directly to open the command prompt (MS-DOS).

IMPORTANT: For this to work, we must open the command prompt with administrator permissions :

Now we are in the black window of MS-DOS and write the following command: ” chkdsk / x / f G:” (without quotes), where G corresponds to the letter of the unit assigned to the USB.  In the screenshot of the image, the letter of my pen drive is (F :).

With this command, the system will look for errors in the USB memory, and if it finds one, it will try to repair USB stick.

2 # Format the pen drive or USB memoryrepair USB stick

If with the CHKDSK command we can not solve the problem we will try to format the pen drive. We will lose the data stored in the disk, but it is likely that this way the device will work again, so, let’s keep this in mind!

To format an external storage disk or a USB drive in Windows simply open the ” Computer ” window, select the drive of the pen drive, and with the right button select ” Format “.

Uncheck the option ” Quick Format ” and click on ” Start “. It is the 2nd step to repair USB stick.

3 # DISKPART, the definitive repairrepair USB stick

If neither of these 2 methods has worked for us, it’s time to take out the heavy artillery. We open a command window again (by typing ” cmd ” or ” command prompt ” in Cortana or from the “Start -> Run” button).

Note: It is important to open the terminal window with administrator permissions (as indicated in method # 1 at the beginning of the post), if not, it is possible that we get some error of insufficient permissions.

Next, we execute the following series of commands in this order:

  • ” Diskpart “: With this command, we access the disk partition.
  • ” List disk “: Here we ask you to show us a list of the discs. We will identify the pen drive by the size shown in each of the discs.
  • ” Select disk NUMERO_DE_DISCO_DEL_USB “: If the pen drive is disk 2, for example, we will write the command ” select disk 2 “.
  • ” Clean “: With this command, we clean the USB memory.
  • ” Create partition primary “: Now we create a primary partition.
  • ” Select partition 1 “: We select the partition that we just created.
  • ” Active “: We mark the partition as active.
  • ” Format fs = FAT32 “: With this command, we format the USB disk.

Once all the steps have been followed, if everything went well, we will have a formatted, readable disk ready to store new data and files in it. Of course! It is the last step to repair USB stick.

If there is still any doubt, I attached the following video where I develop all the methods “live and direct”, one by one:

Solutions for possible failures and errors during the repair process

Depending on the status of the pen drive it is possible that we find one of these errors during the “sanitation” process. Here I will try to collect all those common problems that you have transferred to me in the comments area. We can follow the step to repair USB stick.

“Virtual disk service error”

Within the error faults of the virtual disk service we can find a few variants:

  • ” Virtual Disk Service Error: There are no media on the device .” This failure means that the system is not able to communicate with the USB memory. For the PC it is an empty unit. As a result, you can not access the data stored in the unit.
  • ” Virtual Disk Service Error: The waiting time for the operation has run out .” This message tells us that we have tried to contact the unit, but it does not respond.
  • ” Error diskpart has encountered an error: the request cannot be made because of an I / O device error “. As in the previous cases, this is a communication error between the USB memory and the computer.

These 3 errors related to the virtual disk often mean that the pen drive has a hardware fault.

If the USB has got wet we can try to put it in a bag of rice for a couple of days. Let it absorb moisture well and try again to connect it.

If the case is that there has been a blow or just a long time ago that we did not use it, it is possible that it has deteriorated or spoiled forever.

Faced with this situation, we can do little, the truth. There remains the possibility that all this comes from an error when assigning a letter to the unit, although it is unlikely. It is a failure that arises when we connect a USB with a letter that is already assigned to another disk in the PC (another pendrive, the own hard disk of the equipment, etc.). We can try to solve it by changing the letter assigned to the pendrive:

  • Open the ” Disk Management ” panel (from the control panel or from Cortana).
  • We select our pendrive and by right-clicking, we click on ” Change the letter and access routes of the unit “. We assign a new letter (which is free and unused) and save the changes.

“Virtual disk service error: the volume is too small”

Another failure with the virtual disk, but this time we can solve without too many dramas. All we have to do is the format the USB in NTFS format instead of FAT32.

For this, when we are doing formatting using commands, instead of using the command ” format fs = FAT32 ” we will use ” format fs = NTFS “.

If this does not work, we will perform the following series of commands:

  • diskpart
  • clean
  • convert gpt
  • format fs = NTFS

“Chkdsk is not available for RAW files”repair USB stick

This error will skip us when trying to repair disk failures with the chkdsk command. When a drive is in the RAW format it means that it has lost its file format. Therefore, in order to run the disk check tool, we will first have to format it (as explained in methods # 2 and # 3).

“Access denied because you do not have sufficient privileges”

I’ve commented a couple of times during the tutorial, but if we do not run the MS-DOS window with administrator permissions we’ll get this error. We can solve it by simply doing this:

If we use Cortana: We write ” cmd “, and when the icon of the system symbol appears, instead of clicking on it we right click and select ” Run as administrator “.

In versions prior to Windows 10: We move to the folder C: \ Windows \ System32 and look for the executable “cmd.exe”. We right-click on the file while pressing the “shift” key and select ” Run as administrator “.

I hope this little tutorial will be useful, and as always, for anything, we will see you in the comments area.


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