I guess it happens to the most of us. Well, it has happened with me quite a lot. Trying to clean up space on my USB flash drive for the latest movie or a video game or even for the office work when you just want to head back home after a long day, this nightmare issue – The Disk Is Write Protected bugs you around for hours.
If this problem persists in your pen drive, SD card, or any other flash drive then stay with me on this for a permanent solution. There can be several reasons the system shows USB drive write protected and won’t even allow you to format write protected flash drives. This post scrutinizes all the possible reasons and will surely help you to remove the write protection from your pen drive/ SD card.
How To Remove The Disk Is Write Protected From Pen Drive
There are total 4 ways through which one can know the reason for write protection and then remove it. But before telling those 4 ways, I must tell you that there might be a reason your flash drive showing write protected is because it is broken. If it is broken then these methods will not help you and most probably you will have to buy a new drive.
Also, make sure your flash drive/SD card is connected to the system while you are trying out options 2,3, & 4. Now without further ado, let’s dig into it:
1. Your Pen Drive/ SD Card Has A Lock?
There are a lot of flash drives which comes with a write protection lock. This lock is used to secure your data so that no one else can overwrite or remove it. But in reality, after turning the lock on, we forget about it and when we try to format our USB or SD card, it shows the disk is write protected.
Just check whether the lock is not turned on and if it is, turn it off and access your flash drive once again.
2. The Malware Infection
So there is no lock on your USB, huh? It may happen that your system or your pen drive is infected by a Virus/Trojan/Worm/Malware and it has done the trick on your flash drive. There are viruses which turn on the write protection of your USB/SD card and then you wonder – How is this happening?
The solution for this is that you do a thorough scan of your system and your flash drives using a trusted Anti-virus. If your drive is infected, then this method will remove the write protection from it.
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3. Remove Write Protection Using Windows PC (XP/ 7/ 8/ 10)
If the above two methods failed, this one will surely save you! Windows OS has a module called Registry Editor which can be used to remove the write protection of flash drives.
It works regardless of the OS version you have. You will find the Registry Editor from Windows XP onwards, till currently on Windows 10. Anyway, I think no one is using OS’s older than XP! Follow these simple steps to use Registry Editor:
- Click Start > type ‘regedit‘ and press Enter.
- A new window will open. On the left hand side, you will see 4-5 directories. Go to this Path:
Note: Can’t find that path, follow the Windows 10 steps given below.
3. Here, you can get to the write protection option of the flash drive. On the right side panel, you will see the WriteProtect value as 1. Double click on it and set the value to 0.
That’s it, you’re done.
Regedit On Windows 10
- Once you open the regedit window, Access this path:
2. Create a new directory on the left panel under Control by right-clicking on it and selecting Key. Name the new key as StorageDevicePolicies. Select it!
3. Come to the right pane of StorageDevicePolicies, right click on it and select New -> DWORD value. Name it as WriteProtect. Set its value as 0. It may also happen that sometimes the DWORD key is already created and its value is set as 1. Just set it to 0.
After setting the value to 0, access the flash drive which was write-protected. Try to copy something on it or format the pen drive or SD card – whichever you are using. It works 99% percent of times, if the write protection problem still persists then the 4th option can only save you now!
4. DiskPart Utility
To access the Diskpart Utility, you need to open the command prompt on your windows machine.
Give administrator access to command prompt . Just search for ‘command prompt’ by clicking on start button. Right click on it and choose ‘Run As Administrator’.
At the prompt, type the following commands. Press Enter after each command!
select disk x ( x is the number of your non-working drive, in this case your Pen drive or SD card – use the capacity of drive to find out which one it is)
attributes disk clear readonly
create partition primary
That’s it. The USB drive should work fine now. If it still shows the disk is write-protected, there’s nothing more you can do with it. Time to buy a new drive.