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How to open USB stick on Windows 10

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How to open USB stick on Windows 10: You recently purchased a new computer with  Windows 10 and, as you are used to the old versions of the Microsoft operating system, having to deal with the new interface of the latter has almost blown you away! As the days went by, you managed to get into the dynamics of this new system and perform some basic operations. Nonetheless, there are still some operations that you previously carried out with simplicity and now find it difficult to complete … also because you are not exactly a technological type. One of these is to  open a USB stick on Windows 10 to access the documents you need, and therefore you are looking for a guide that will teach you to do this.

Well, I am happy to announce that you are in the right place, at a time that could not have been better: in fact, below, I intend to explain by wire and by sign the most effective methods to perform this operation on the latest generation home operating system Microsoft. Finally, I will also show you some emergency procedures, to be put into practice in the event that the key is not recognized correctly.

So what else are you waiting for? Cut out a few minutes of free time for you, make yourself comfortable and read carefully everything I have to say on the subject: I can assure you that, once you have learned all the notions listed in this guide, reading the USB sticks on Windows 10, for you, it will have no more secrets. Seeing is believing!

Open USB stick via autoplay

The first method to  open USB stick on Windows 10 , as well as the simplest, is to use the  autoplay feature of the Microsoft operating system: in doing so, Windows will propose a series of choices to manage the drive just inserted in the system; choices that can be selected in a click.

To use it, the first thing you need to do is  connect the stick to one of the free USB ports on the computer and wait for a notification bubble to appear in the lower right corner of the screen to insert the new device. Without delay, click on the latter (which is displayed only for 10 seconds) and, using the box that appears at the top, choose the most appropriate operation to suit your needs.

For example, you can choose to  Open the folder to view the files  in a File Explorer window (the Windows file manager),  Play the audio files on the stick via one of the multimedia programs installed on the operating system,  Play the photos in presentation mode or simply do nothing. Keep in mind that the choices available during the automatic playback phase may vary both on the basis of the programs installed on the computer and on the content of the stick itself.

If you wish, you can disable the automatic playback function (or  AutoPlay ) for USB sticks or, in general, for all devices, by acting from the Settings panel . To proceed, open the Start menu  by clicking on the  flag  icon located in the lower left corner of the screen, press the pulsante button  and then on the Resident Devices  item  in the panel that is shown on the screen.

Once in the next window, go to the AutoPlay section  by clicking on the item of the same name and choose the operation to be performed for each of the devices already connected at least once to the computer: to disable the appearance of the notification balloon and therefore of the automatic execution features, you must set the No operation item  for each of them.

If, on the other hand, you wish to deactivate AutoPlay for all the devices that will be connected to the computer (USB sticks, optical media, smartphones, cameras and so on), known and not, you must simply move the switch located immediately under the Use AutoPlay item  to  Off for all media and devices .

Once this is done, you will have to manually open the devices whose content you want to read, as I explained in the next section, using File Explorer.

Open USB stick via File Explorer

Were you unable to click on the comic in time or, again, the autoplay options have been disabled and the notification has not appeared at all? You can still view the files on your USB stick using File Explorer , the manager built into Windows.

To use it, click on the yellow folder icon  located in the bottom bar of Windows, identify the section  This resident PC in the left part of the window and, if it is compressed, expand it by clicking on the corresponding arrow . At this point, you simply need to click on the USB stick icon  (eg  Kingston (F 🙂 ) to immediately view the files and folders contained within it.

Alternatively, you can achieve the same result by double clicking on the icon  This PC located on the desktop and then repeat the operation on the icon that identifies the USB stick residing in the Devices and drives panel  .

Open USB stick via Disk Management

If you are unable to view the contents of your USB stick with either of the two methods previously analyzed, since it does not appear in File Explorer, you can try to open it using the integrated disk management utility.

Usually, this solution is extremely effective when Windows 10, for one reason or another, can correctly read the stick but cannot assign a drive letter with which to identify it in File Explorer.

To proceed,  right click on the Start button  located in the lower left corner of the screen and select the Disk Management item  from the menu that opens. Next, identify the name of the USB stick in question (eg  Kingston ) from the list of storage units connected to the computer,  right-click on it and select the item  Change drive letter and path … from the contextual menu proposed.

At this point, click on the Add … button  located in the small window that opens on the screen, affix the check mark next to the Assign this drive letter item , select the first free letter (eg  F 🙂  from the corresponding drop-down menu and presses the OK button  to confirm the assignment.

If everything went in the right direction, you should be able to view the contents of the stick inside File Explorer: to check it right away, once again right click on the USB stick icon inside the Disk Management window and select the Open item  from the proposed context menu.

Note : to avoid unexpected behaviors on the part of any somewhat “dated” programs, avoid assigning the letters A: and  B: to the stick  , as they were originally dedicated to floppy disks.

In case of problems

Did you follow the instructions I gave you in this guide, but you still couldn’t open the USB stick on Windows 10 ? Then the problem may be a little more serious than it seems: you can try to solve it by following the instructions below.

Verify that the key is intact / correctly formatted

If you have the chance, try inserting the same USB stick into another computer with Windows: if this does not work or returns the error ” Unformatted disk drive “, try reformatting it following the procedures that I have illustrated to you in this guide ; if this option also fails, you may have to consider purchasing a new key .

If, however, the USB drive is fully functional on a second PC, then continue reading the following sections, as the problem is to be found in the computer you are using.

Verify that the USB ports are enabled

Sometimes, it can happen that the computer’s USB ports are disabled by the operating system for a number of reasons beyond the user’s will: to check if this is your case, you need to go to the device management panel of Windows 10 and enable the doors eventually disabled again.

How? Very simple:  right click on the Start button  (the  flag icon located in the lower left corner of the screen), click on the Device Management item  located in the menu that will open and wait a few moments for the management panel to appear fully loaded.

At this point, locate the USB Controller item  , click on it to expand it and check if one or more USB ports on the computer are disabled: in this case, there should be a black symbol next to each of them.

To enable them again, right click on the icon of the door in question and select the Activate item  from the menu that appears: therefore wait for the door to be reactivated (after re-loading the list of devices, the black symbol should disappear), insert the USB stick into the computer and check that it is finally opened.

Reset the USB controllers

Did not the previous solution even restore the correct functioning of the USB ports? The last word is not yet said: you can try to restore the drivers by temporarily uninstalling them from the system.

First, therefore, go to the Device Management panel  as I have shown you a moment ago, expand the entry for the  USB Controller , right click on each of the devices listed in its correspondence and select the Uninstall item  from the proposed context menu. After completing this procedure, restart your computer, wait for Windows to automatically install the device drivers and try to connect the USB stick again.

Unlock the USB ports

Still not able to open a USB stick on Windows 10? As a last resort, I recommend that you see whether access to the USB ports has been blocked, voluntarily or involuntarily, via the registry.

To begin with, press the combination of Win + R keys  , type the regedit command  in the small window that opens, press the Enter button  and then the Yes button  to grant the necessary permissions to the system registry.

In the window that opens, locate the left sidebar, click on the arrow located next to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE item  and repeat the operation on the  System, CurrentControlSet  and Services items . Now, click on the USBSTOR item  , identify the Start  key  located on the right side of the register and  double-click on it: type the value  3 in the box below the item  Value data: attached to the window that will open, click on the OK button  and restart the computer.

After completing this step, insert the USB stick back into the computer and, if everything went in the right direction, you should finally be able to read its contents.

How do you say? Have you not been able to deal with it even this time? As an extreme solution, I suggest you take a look at the settings panel of the antivirus or any other protection program that you have installed on your computer: you may have inadvertently activated the reading lock of external USB devices.