How to Remove Virus from Pen Drive without Losing Data?

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Is your pen drive infected by virus? This can make your pen drive data inaccessible. To restore data, use Remo recover. A powerful tool built specifically to recover data from corrupt pen drives with ease. Also, this tool can recover data from inaccessible, unrecognized or corrupted storage device like SSD, memory card, etc.

A lot of people wonder how to remove viruses from Pendrive without having to sacrifice data. We generally use pen drives in our daily life as a temporary storage device and to transfer data between the systems. But, pen drives are easily susceptible to virus infection when compared to other storage devices as they can be extensively used on any computer easily. They can be easily plugged in and out of any system, this is the main reason for virus infection on these pen drives.

This would lead to data corruption; in turn leading to the loss of your vital files on these pen drives. I believe most of you might have come across such situations and even lost your vital data from the pen drives due to this. So, know how you can recover virus-deleted files without any hassle now.

Stop worrying and act fast!!! When you find any traces of such infection just try removing them as soon as possible, else they could replicate themselves and make your entire pen drive corrupt. Mentioned here are 4 ways that are guaranteed to remove viruses from your pen drive, without losing any of your vital data. Read on to know-how:

Table of Contents:

Method 1: Unhide Files

Due to a virus infection, your important files on the pen drive might become hidden. So first try to unhide these files:

Due to a virus infection, your important files on the pen drive might become hidden. So first try to unhide these files:

  • In Start Menu -> Click RUN -> type cmd to open the command prompt
  • Now, type your Flash Drive Letter (for example J) followed with a colon i.e. J:

remove virus from Pendrive

  • Type attrib -r -a -s -h *.* and press enter. This will unhide all your files on the pen drive.

Note: If your USB drive doesn't show full capacity then your drive is infected with malware, read this article to Restore your USB drive back to its capacity.

Method 2: Identify and remove virus from Pendrive

Locate and identify the virus and delete them. Actually, viruses can exist in many forms like Autorun.inf, Newfolder.exe, RAVMON.exe, New-folder.exe, SVChoste.exe, etc.   In the command prompt again type the drive letter (for example J) followed by a colon (J:)  and press enter  Then type

“dir /w/o/a/p”  (without quotes)

This will list all the files present in that drive, if you find any of the files listed above then just delete them by typing “del” followed by the full name of the file and an “attrib” command. For example, if it is an autorun.inf then, use

  • “attrib -s -h -r autorun.inf”  .(without double quotes) press Enter and then type
  • “del autorun.inf”

In case it is a shortcut virus i.e. all files have become shortcuts, then you will have to use

  • “del *.lnk” and hit Enter.(without double quotes)
  • Finally, type the below command and hit Enter. (without double quotes)
    “attrib -s -r -h *.* /s /d /l”

Wait for some time and then open the pen drive.

In case these don’t work then just use attrib -h -r -s /s /d j: \*.*   and wait for some time and then open your pen drive.

Note: Don’t forget to replace the letter “J” with the drive letter for the pen drive shown on your systems.

Method 3: Use Antivirus Software

In case the above-explained steps or commands fail to remove the virus from your pen drive, just make use of the good and trustworthy anti-virus software which is available plenty in the market. Make sure you always use the updated versions of the software as they provide complete security and will be designed to even defend the newer threats.

Important Information: A virus infection may cause your USB flash drive to appear empty while it is actually full. If such a problem occurred to you. If you want to discover how to resolve the flash drive is empty but says full issue, please read through this detailed instruction.

Method 4: Format your Pen Drive to remove the virus from Pendrive

This is the last option to get rid of viruses from your pen drive. Even if the antivirus software couldn’t remove the virus then, go for “Quick Format”. Before performing this option, make sure you have taken a backup of your entire important data which was saved on your pen drive. Since formatting will not just eliminate viruses from your pen drive, but also erase the data permanently.  So we highly recommend you to first take a backup and then follow the steps explained below.

  • Go to Start - > click on My Computer (newer Windows use Computer)
  • From the drives list, locate your pen drive and right-click on it
  • Now, click on Format.
  • From the menu select the Quick Format option, and hit Start.

With this, your pen drive will be formatted successfully in turn eliminating the viruses from it. Now just restore back your backed-up data. In case you don’t have a backup copy, then you will lose your data for sure. If you don’t have a backup and lost your entire data when you formatted the pen drive, don’t get tensed. 

A Time-Tested Way to Recover Files from Virus attacked or Formatted Pendrive.

You can make use of Remo Recover, a renowned tool built to recover formatted data from any Pendrive. This tool can recover formatted images, audio and video files, movies, documents, spreadsheets, etc. with utmost ease. Compatible with all the latest versions of Windows including Windows 11, 10, and its’s previous versions. and macOS including Big Sur, Catalina, Mojave, High Sierra, and other older versions. Remo comes with a preview feature, which lets you view the recovered files for free.
Download and try this tool for free now!

  1. Download and install Remo Recover
  2. Connect your virus-infected/ formatted USB drive and start the recovery process.
  3. Note - If you are unable to detect your USB, Click on Can't find the drive option and select the USB drive of your preference

  4. Choose the USB drive you want to recover and click on Scan 
  5. The tool will automatically initiate Quick Scan. Once the Quick Scan is completed, the tool runs Deep Scan where it restores data sector by sector. Open the Dynamic Recovery View to easily recover the files simultaneously while the Deep Scan is running.

  6. You can also search for the specific file format in the search bar with the Advanced Filter option

  7. After the Partition / USB drive is scanned the recovered data will be presented for to you can Preview.

  8. Choose the files from the formatted USB drive, and click on Save a browse for a location to save the recovered data.   

Important Note:

  • Always scan your pen drive with the latest antivirus software as soon and you connect it your PC
  • Keep updating the antivirus software regularly
  • Take data backup frequently

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I make my virus-infected pen drive usable?  

Here’s how you can remove the virus from your pen drive and make it usable:
1. Scan your pen drive: Running an antivirus application will determine, whether or not your pen drive is infected by a virus or any other malware infection, if you find any malware/viruses delete it
2. Copy important files: Back up your important files and save them on a virus-free drive. Don’t copy the whole directory! Because there are a lot of hidden files, the virus could potentially be one of those hidden files, so it is advised to copy pen drive files folder by folder. After which you can format the device, to make it usable.

How can I remove the virus from my USB without deleting files?

A simple way to remove the virus from your Pendrive without deleting data si to take a backup of data or files you don't want to lose and store them on some other drive and then format the Pendrive. This way you can remove viruses without deleting any files.

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Tony Landry

Tony Landry is a Web Content Editor at Remo Software. He loves to write, edit, and manage content for users trying to troubleshoot and fix problems on Windows, Outlook, storage drives and Cloud storage networks.

He has published more than 200 articles in Remo Software blog. He actively engages in research and problem-solving techniques to consistently generate great web content. Fixing various hardware problems on computer and storage devices along with a great knack for fixing Outlook errors, Tony is also the fun-time IT guy for all his work friends. He lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and enjoys cycling.

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