We recently helped a customer fix a problem with their USB stick.
When they plugged the stick into the computer’s USB socket, they were presented with a question box on the screen whether to format the stick or not.
This happens if the File Allocation Table on the stick is corrupt and cannot be read by Windows.
Do not under any circumstances answer “YES” to the formatting as the contents of the stick will be deleted and you will make things worse.
Instead, note the drive letter of the USB stick. Let’s call it “D”
Do not remove the USB stick from your computer.
Check on the side of the USB stick to make sure that it has not been locked accidentally. You may see a small sliding switch on side of the USB stick with a padlock icon. Make sure that the stick is unlocked.
This is because the anti-virus programme in your computer will want to be able to access the stick in case it contains a malware.
Go to the search window on the bottom left corner of your screen and type command.
You will see the command shortcut at the top of the list.
If you RIGHT click this result and look on the right you’ll see some options.
Right click the option “Run as Administrator”
A black screen will now appear.
In the black screen type
chkdsk x: /f
Change the “x” to the drive letter of your USB stick which in our case is D
So you will type
chkdsk d: /f
Lastly press the Enter button on your keyboard.
Once the programme has finished, you can type exit at the blinking cursor.
Now try to open the USB stick and there’s a good chance you’ll now see the files again!