Remove virus from pen drive without losing 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 to any system this is the main reason for virus infection on these pen drives.

This would lead to data corruption; in turn leading to 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.  Here are few of the tips / steps to remove virus form your pen drive that too without losing your vital data. Read on to know how:


Unhide files: Due to 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 colon i.e. J:

  • 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.

Identify and delete Virus: Locate and identify the virus and delete them. Actually virus 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 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 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 if 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 if these doesn’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

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 are available plenty in 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.

Format your pen drive

This is the last option to get rid of virus form 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 Backup of your entire important data on your pen drive.

  • 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, select Quick Format option, hit “Yes” when asked for confirmation

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 back up copy, then you will lose your data for sure. This is because formatting will completely erase all the data stored on the pen drive. Hence, don’t forget to take data backup before formatting. In case if you don’t have backup and lost your entire data don’t get tensed, make use of the Remo Recover software and restore your data back. This tool will help you to easily get back your complete data even after formatting your pen drive.

Important Note:

  • Always scan your pen drive with the latest antivirus software as soon and you connect tit your PC
  • Keep updating the antivirus software regularly
  • Take data backup frequently
Remove virus from pen drive without losing data was last modified: March 4th, 2021 by Tony Landry

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