Jul 10, 2010

How to write protect and How to remove write protect for USB Pen Drive

Steps to make your drive Write Protected:

1.    Open Registry Editor by typing regedit in Run dialog.

2.    Navigate to the key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\

3.    Find a sub key inside it named “StorageDevicePolicies”. If it does not exist there then we need to make it. Right click on “Control” key -> New -> Key. Name it “StorageDevicePolicies” without quotes.

4.    Now right click on this newly created key and then click New -> DWORD value and name it as “WriteProtect”.

5.    Modify this key and give it a value 1.

6.    Click OK, and remember to restart the PC.

Now no more data can be transferred to the drive but to start using the drive again just give the “WriteProtect” key a value of 0 instead of 1 and restart the PC.

This seems to be the problem of most of us these days and some of our readers who wanted to know the methods how they can remove the Write Protected error from their USB drives like Pen Drives and memory cards.

In the Write Protected error, we can’t write or copy any data in our flash drives and even can’t format the drive.

There are many reasons that cause this problem, let’s see solutions of them.


•    First of all try to locate a small switch (if any, that you may have not noticed) at some place on the drive or memory card reader. This is the prime reason for this error. If there is one, switch it to the other side to turn the protection off.

•    Yes I know this problem is also occurring these days without this switch but not to worry. Just download this helpful software from here and run it to execute a “low-level format” on the drive. This software is quite handy and may take few attempts to actually remove the error.

•    The problem can also be caused by some virus activity so just get it scanned by some updated good anti virus which may solve your problem.

•    BUT if none of the methods listed above solves your problem then your pen drive might have gone corrupted, so just get it replaced.

Hope any of the methods listed above solves your problem.

Update 1:

After the low level format, you may need to “Partition the drive“. Dont worry, partitioning a pen drive means allocating it its File System and Cluster Size that was lost after the Low Level Format.

For that:

   1. Run diskmgmt.msc in Run.
   2. In the disk management window, select the pen drive, right click on it and click on Format.
   3. Now choose the File System and Allocation Unit Size and do not check the boxes below.

Click OK and the drive will be reusable after this.

Update 2 (Better Solution):

Follow the steps in the above how to create a write protected and just put the value 0 (zero) in step 5.

If any doubts please do comment...
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