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How to Write Protect and Disable USB Drive

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Old 08-04-2009
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 344
How to Write Protect and Disable USB Drive

For the sake of convenience, users sometimes like to copy their working files into a USB drive. Instead of bringing their own laptop, they tend to bring their USB to a client’s office to print or show the workings to clients and others using available PCs. This could pose potential risk of exposure to virus infection especially if the PC you are using does not have an up-to-date antivirus application installed. As today’s viruses are crafted to perfection and have evolved to become more sophisticated, the damage to files stored in your pen drive and even the infection to your laptop later could be substantially catastrophic. To avoid this unnecessary headache, of course you can choose to install antivirus application to your USB drive for security protection. Alternately, you could write protect your USB drive as the ideal solution.

Most USB drives have a small write-protect switch or slider like what you used to find in floppy disks which can be used to lock the drive as read only. If your USB drive doesn’t have one, to write protect or disable write access to the removable USB drive, you can try the registry hack of WriteProtect in StorageDevicePolicies registry key. If editing registry files is something you will only do last, perhaps some of the applications below could help you.

PenProtect is a useful application to protect your removable disks from the addition of new files. With this application, it can prevent viruses, trojan, malware, etc from spreading and writing to your pendrive. Compatible with Windows 95,98,Me,XP,Vista, this application doesn’t require installation in the pen drive. What users need to do is just copy an executable file to the drive. To write protect the drive, users just need to execute the file by double clicking it. Another double clicking to the executable file will remove the protection instantly. It is quick, simple and easy to use. The shortcoming of this application is it is not free.

Thumbscrew is a free application which allows users to write protect their USB drive. It can be downloaded via the link here. Once it is installed, users just need to right click the System Tray icon and choose “Make USB Read Only” to activate the write protect.

USB Write Protector
Similar to ThumbScrew, USB Write protector is another free utility to write protect your USB drive. This utility is tiny in size and you can carry it along with you in your removable USB drive. USB Write protector can be downloaded via the link here.

With these applications above, you can easily write protect your USB pen drive from being accessed through the system. If you happen to come across better applications to write protect USB flash drive, feel free to share with us.

Source: mydigitallife

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Old 08-04-2009
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 351
Re: How to Write Protect and Disable USB Drive

This works if your mp3 player or usb flash device works fine with with other computers.

Warning If you use Registry Editor incorrectly, you may cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. If uncomfortable with using Registry Editor, see if you can find someone who is comfortable and that you can Trust. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

For Windows XP Only
1) Click Start->Run.

2)Type regedit and hit enter.

4)Click on the plus sign next to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE

5)Click on the plus sign next to SYSTEM

6)Click on the plus sign next to CurrentControlSet

7)Click on the plus sign next to Control

8)Click on the plus sign next to StorageDevicePolicies

9)Write click on WriteProtect and click modify.

10)If the value data is 1 change it 0 and click ok.

11)Repeat steps 7 to 10 for ControlSet001 and ControlSet002 .

12)Close Registry editor and restart the computer.

If you don't find it in the registry, the best way is to create it yourself. Below is the procedure.

Start the Registry Editor

Go to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Control key

If there is no key called StorageDevicePolicies, create it
You do this by right-clicking the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SYSTEM \ CurrentControlSet \ Control key, and selecting New > Key from the menu.

Select the StorageDevicePolicies key

From the menu select Edit > New > DWORD Value

Name the new value WriteProtect

Right-click the WriteProtect value and choose Modify

In the Value Data: box enter 1

Exit the registry editor, and restart your computer

"To reverse, just delete the new WriteProtect value (or set the value to 0) and restart the computer."
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Old 27-07-2009
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 1
Re: How to Write Protect and Disable USB Drive

Hello everyone! I just encountered this and figured it out through sheer luck, so if this doesn't work for you, I apologize.

When using Windows Vista 64bit Ultimate, instead of creating a DWord value named "WriteProtect" you must create a QWord value. Everything else in the instructions is identical.
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