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Flash Drive Data Recovery from Formatted Flash Drives

 Modified on: February 15, 2021 |    14465 views

Problem with Flash Drives

Flash drives, or simply called USBs are the most amazing products used for storing different data such as audios, videos, documents, etc. They are compact, have huge storage capacities and are affordable. People tend to have at least one flash drive with them at all times. After all, it fulfills many purposes including storing movies, music, documents, downloads and more. However, a lot of things can go horribly wrong with flash drives. This discussion will be focusing on one such problem where your flash drive is not detected on your PC and how you can perform flash drive data recovery from inaccessible, damaged or formatted USB, popularly known as Flash drives.

Flash Drive not showing in ‘My Computer’

While working on your PC, you might want to take a backup of an important file or maybe want to listen to a favorite song stored in your flash drive. Imagine a scenario wherein you connect your flash drive to your PC, hear the familiar device connection sound but nothing happens thereafter. No auto play window pops-up, and when you open “My Computer” the drive doesn't even show up there. What do you do next? Checking under Disk Management seems like the obvious step. So, you go to Start -> Computer -> Right click on it -> Manage. This opens up the Disk Management window where you expect to find the flash drive for sure. However, sadly, it’s not listed there too. It is then that you realize that something is not right and that you need to do something fast in order to save your data.

Possible Reasons for this problem

To rectify a problem you must first understand its root cause. What could cause such behavior of the flash drive? Here are possible reasons:

Improper handling – Rough usage of any electronic media can cause permanent damage to it

Virus infection – Malware or virus infected downloads when stored on flash drives can cause corruption of their file system. As a result, formatting could come out as the only solution which leads to data loss

Power surges – Sudden power outages or voltage fluctuations when the flash drive is connected to the PC could cause damage to it

Abrupt system termination – Abrupt shut down of the PC when the flash drive is connected to it could also be a potential reason for damage or corruption to the flash drive.

Removing the flash drive without Safety check – This is generally taken for granted by many users. Repeated disconnecting of a flash drive without performing the “Safely remove media” check can lead to damage to flash drive over time.

How to recover flash drive data after formatting?

When formatting a device, the obvious stress which keeps boggling a user’s mind is the impending data loss. However, with the availability of some excellent Flash Drive Data Recovery Software this is one area where users need not worry. A recommended software, which works wonders in the field of flash drive recovery, is >Stellar Data Recovery Professional.

Some Important Features of the Software are:

This software uses advanced algorithms to scan the formatted devices and find recoverable data. It then gives the user a choice to select which all files he wants to recover. As simple as that! Here are some key features of this product:
• Recovers mission-critical files from Windows hard drive and supported external media
• Recovers deleted email data types from MS Outlook and Outlook Express
• Recovers files from damaged or corrupt optical media
• Facilitates recovery of broad range of files types, including documents, photos, and multimedia files
• Offers unique “Raw Recovery” feature to flawlessly recover files from severely corrupt media

How to Use a Software:

  • Download and install the Stellar software.

  • You’ll find the following interface:

  • Select what you want to recover and use Next button to resume recovery process.


  • Select the Location from where you want to retrieve your data and click on Scan. This will show you the Time Left and Elapsed during the Scanning of a selected drive.
  • After the drive gets scanned, your files/folders get listed under the File Type, Tree View and the Deleted List.

  • Select the File as per your requirement and click on the Save option.

Note: Deep Scan will thoroughly scan each and every sector of your drive. Use this feature, if you are not satisfied with the normal results.

  • The Save feature will ask you for the destination to store a file on your system.

  • Select your destination location and press Save button in order to save and use your recovered file.

Common Flash drive fixes you can try

When this happens, the most common way to reuse flash drives is to format it. Unplanned formatting like in this situation surely leads to data loss. And of course, you don’t want that to happen. So try these fixes first:

• Test the flash drive on another computer.
• Test the flash drive on other ports of your computer.
• Connect any other device to your computer and see if that is working. This will ascertain if the problem is with the device or the port.
• Assign the drive a letter. For this follow these steps:
   o Go to Disk Management
   o Locate the drive in question
   o Right click on it and select “Online”
   o Assign it a drive letter that is not already in use
• Delete the ports in Device Manager and then reboot the computer. The operating system should recognize the ports after the reboot.
• Check if the flash drive’s driver is installed correctly. If not, download it from the internet and reinstall.
• Update the flash drive’s driver if it is outdated.

If none of the above-mentioned fixes are able to revive your flash drive, the problem might be a serious one and formatting might be the only solution for it. However, if you do have to resort to it, you shouldn’t worry about losing your precious data. Want to know why? Read the following section.

Concluding Words

Henceforth if you encounter problems with your flash drive, you don’t need to panic. Use the tips and tricks mentioned above to rectify the issue. If they don’t work and by chance you have to format the device, recover your data in no time using advanced USB flash drive recovery software like Stellar Partition Recovery.


11 User Comments


Thanks for this helpful tutorial. I'm couldn't manage to get my SanDisk USB Cruzerblade detected in my Windows 8 PC. Could you help me or guide so i can fix it as I really have some crucial files stored on the USB Flash drive.

Any help would be truly appreciated.


What is exact error message you see after plugging you USB drive?? You can navigate to disk management(right click on 'My computer' and choose to manage). Locate your problem USB drive and see if there is any yellow exlamation mark listed in front of it. If so, I'm afraid that the formatting is the only way to make this flash drive working again and you can use it from scratch. However, it'll permanently wipes off all your important files.

Try Data recovery software form Stellar ( and run a complete scan after which, you'd able to see the preview of inaccessible files and folders. You'll also be able to recover them by clicking on Recover button located at the bottom right corner.

Good luck!!

Amit Pandey

I've had tried this tool and it did scanned the drive completely. However, i'm trying to recover lost files folder wise from the Flash Drive.

Please guide me on how can i do this.


Hi Spencer,

The software will automatically scan and list recoverable items according to their types. Further, you've more options to customize the scan results like grouping them according to their file types, folder in which it was stored previously, time and date modified etc.

Recovery from flash drive is never been easier without using this tool. Hope the solution above helps you!!

Amit Pandey

You are genius man. I'm able to recover flash drive data with the software above 'Stellar Partition Recovery'. That really did magic by detecting the flash drive under drive recovery interface and allows recovering data from accidentally formatted flash drives.

Thank You!!


I've a flash drive of 64 GB in size that's showing RAW under disk management. I've tried changing drive letter name, running chkdsk etc. but nothing helped so far.

I've looking forward for any possibility of flash drive data recovery using the software you've mentioned above. Could it possible for this software to recover flash drive data even if it's showing RAW instead of healthy?


Hi Alison,

Don't run chkdsk command as it'll make the situation worst. Download and install software first and connect your flash drive for recovery. Flash drive will be listed under drive recovery and quick recovery function of this software will do the trick for recovering flash drive data.

Do let us know if you are facing problem while recovering flash drive data.

Good luck!!



my pendrive data corrupted..i lost all datas like photos,videos etc..its showing 0 bytes..I juz Stellar Windows Data Recovery but cout recover..its showing dialogue box error messesge as not a valid volume or critical data structure of volume badly me

Amit Pandey

Hi Gayu,

Did you try Quick recovery option? Try advance recovery option to scan and recover your data. If issue still persist contact our support team on support(at)stellarinfo(dot)com.

Good Luck!

I ran the free version and dragged a photo there from flash drive that only showed the top 20% of photo, rest was black. Your product did not repair it. Does this suggest a hopeless cause?



Hi Peter,

We understand the inconvenience caused to you.

We suggest you to check the file preview after repair. The application will save the repaired file same as the preview is shown. You may also try Advance Repair option available in the application.

You may use the below link to connect with our support team and they will assist you further:

Stellar Data Recovery


User Comments



Stellar Data Recovery Professional Stellar Data Recovery Professional is a do-it-yourself data recovery software that helps you to easily recover deleted files & folders, missing or corrupt partitions and even accidentally formatted hard drives.

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