8 Free Ways to Repair Corrupted USB Pen Drive

Last updated on March 28, 2024


USB pen drive is corrupted and unrecognized? Are you looking for corrupted usb flash repair tools? Don’t worry, I have 8 ways to help you recover your corrupted usb pen drive without formatting or data loss.

a usb pen drive picture A usb pen drive not recognized

Pen drive corrupt problems can be caused by many reasons that bring various solutions for each. Don't worry even when your pen drive can not be detected in Windows 11/10/8/7/XP/Vista, here are all solutions that you may try to fix your flash drive.

Solution 1: Try it on another PC

Sometimes some usb pen drive can’t be recognized by PC because there’s some problems on PC, you only need to change another computer to read your USB pen drive.

usb drive

Solution 2: Recover damaged usb pen drive by physical adjustment

When an usb pen drive is used for a long time, the usb interface may be unreadable for computer, it is probably because the usb port get loose, or there are some dusts in the usb port, you can use a swab to clean or go to the store to do some adjustment or try more times.

Solution 3: Corrupted pen drive recovery by changing drive letter

You can try to change your usb flash drive to another, and then your computer can assign your device and the files on it can be shown.

Instructions of changing the drive letter:

Step1: connect your usb pen drive to the computer, right click “my computer”, click “manage “option

Change drive letter step 1 Change drive letter step 1

Step 2: you can see an unknown device in the drive list, right click it and choose to update drive software.

Change drive letter step2 Change drive letter step2

Solution 4: Damaged pen drive recovery by reinstalling drive

If your drive can run your usb, but your computer can’t detect it, you can try reinstall your drive.

Instructions of reinstalling drive

Step 1: right click “my computer”, choose “manage” option,click “device manager”

Reinstall drive step 1 Reinstall drive step 1

Step 2: find your usb in the list, right click it, choose to uninstall, pull out your usb, and connect it to your PC again.

Reinstall drive step 2 Reinstall drive step 2

Or you may directly right click your device here and choose 'Update Driver Software...' at this step insteading of 'Uninstall' to try any luck.

Step 3: Come to 'Device Manager' -> Action -> Scan for hardware changes to reload your device.

Reinstall drive step 2 Scan for new hardware changes under Action

Solution 5: Repair a corrupted usb pen drive by updating drive

If your usb drive is not recognized by windows, you can also try to update your drive.

Instructions to update the drive:

Step 1: Run the command prompt, type “devmgmt.msc”

Update drive instruction step1 Update drive instruction step1

Step 2: You can see a unknown device in the drive list, right click it and choose to update drive software

Update drive instruction step 2 Update drive instruction step 2

Another method for updating media driver would be using a tool called ChipGenius that could read the type of your flash drive and show you what it is and then you may update its driver.

See how this is operated in the following video.

Download url: https://www.softpedia.com/get/System/System-Info/ChipGenius.shtml

Solution 6: Command prompt chkdsk to repair damaged flash drive

You can also use CMD chkdsk to repair your usb pen drive.

Step 1: Run CMD.

Step 2: Type “chkdsk /X /f USB drive letter”, for example 'chkdsk /x/f h' (when h is the drive letter of your flash drive that you need to replace h with your flash stick drive letter in your computer) and press enter.

Run cmd instruction Run cmd instruction

You may also try the following command lines to see any luck.

  1. 'chkdsk /f /r H' (You need to replace H with your flash drive's drive letter that shows up in your computer)
  2. FORMAT *: /FS:FAT32 (Replace * with your flash drive's drive letter)

Also read: data recovery with command line guide here.

Solution 7: Check if there are bad sectors on the damaged usb pen drive

Windows system has build-in error checking tools for damaged usb which has file system raw, you can use it to check if there are bad sectors on the usb pen drive and repair them.

Instructions to use error-checking tool to repair your usb:

Step 1: find your usb drive in the file explorer, right click it, and select “properties”

Check bad sectors step 1 Check bad sectors step 1

Step 2: choose “tools” module, and click error-checking option, then choose “scan and repair drive” to repair the corrupted usb.

Check bad sectors step2 Check bad sectors step2

And then confirm the repairing.

repair damaged mediaCheck bad sectors step 3

Solution 8: Corrupted usb pen drive data recovery tool

Sometimes usb can be unrecognized due to virus infection or system crash, or your usb drive can be detected but the computer says it is blank. Then you need to recover your data first and format the usb to repair it.

While you need to make sure to choose a safe software, a read-only data recovery program will be better, you can try iCare Recovery, it’s a reliable utility and it has a free version. You can free download this tool here at iCare Recovery download

sd card recoveryRecover usb pen drive tool

And this might be the most effective way and also the easiest way to get data from usb stick.

All the solutions above is based on the premise that usb is not physically damaged, if your usb pen drive is physically damaged, you can only take it to the professional repair store to fix your usb drive. The price is usually vary from $20-$400, it depends on the extend of damage.

Data loss from usb pen drive can be a headache problem, avoiding usb pen drive corrupted problems can protect your data safely.

These are some advice to prevent your usb pen drive from getting corrupted:

  • Do not insert your usb pen drive into public computer to avoid infected by virus.
  • Remove your usb drive from PC safely.
  • Pull the usb out carefully to avoid damage the usb port
  • Make a backup for your important data at somewhere else.
  • Find a suitable tool to help you recover data.

#9 - Format damaged pendrive to fat32/ntfs

There are several ways that you may fix a corrupted usb drive by changing its unreadable file system to fat32 or ntfs. Here is one of the simpliest that you may try using the cmd command prompt to get it done.




format raw fat32 Format damaged usb flash fat32 using cmd

Recommend: Here are more detailed tutorials for changing raw unreadable usb to another file system 3 free ways to convert raw to fat32

Top 3 ways to convert usb flash raw to ntfs

Video Guide - how to fix corrupted usb drive

Also read: 8 flash drive repair software download

Last updated on March 28, 2024

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