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Help! My PC no longer recognizes my Android as a USB drive

It’s a very frustrating problem: you would like to transfer files for a Android which means you plug your Android device for a PC via USB, only to discover that it it not being recognized as a hard drive. So you plug and replug and check the wire and that both products are attached properly, to no avail. What to do? Read on!

This has happened with every Android device I have owned (which is to say, both my Galaxy Note and my new Nexus 7), and discovered who's is a potentially multi faceted problem, and solving it can involve a number of different actions. This post aims to present a comprehensive set of suggestions that will hopefully enable you to fix the matter.

Note that article is about connecting your Android device with a Windows PC. Also, go these sequentially; the interventions that I believe are prone to work are for auction on top.

Intervention #1: Use a different USB cable

Sounds silly, however, you should remove the possibility this is the problem right off the bat. It actually is not a silly issue in any respect: if you happen to be with all the cable that, say, originally served the function of connecting your laptop to a cooling fan to power it, or came with an old device of some type that you will no longer use, it might work for charging and not for transferring data, because it may have been designed for charging only or perhaps any case not suitable for transferring the type of data a smartphone requires.

Therefore try connecting with all the original cable that had your device or even a high quality cable that you trust, and find out if that solves the matter.

Intervention #2: Uninstall and re-install Android drivers

This is really what worked to me. Here’s how to do it (on Windows 7, however the process should be similar on other versions):

  • Make sure your Android device is attached to the PC first (even if not acknowledged as a drive).

  • Go the the ‘Device Manager’:  either right click on ‘My Computer’ and select ‘properties’ then ‘Device Manager’  in the left sidebar, or head to ‘Control Panel’ then ‘system’ then ‘Device Manager’ from the left sidebar.

  • Next, obtain the Android device driver then right click uninstall. The driver may be listed under ‘Portable Devices’ or ‘Other devices’ or it may be listed under it’s own name (begin to see the screenshot below for examples). Uninstall all entries you will find. If not found at all then this intervention isn't for you. Check a number of the other options mentioned on this page.

Uninstall Android driver in Device Manager

  • Once the drivers are uninstalled, unplug your device from your PC. Make sure your pc is attached to the Internet and automatic updating is fired up, then replug your device and allow Windows to locate and install the drivers all over again.

  • Finally, check out ‘My Computer’ and appearance if your device appears as a drive. If so, then your problem is solved.  If not, see if a number of the other interventions mentioned here might work with you.

Intervention #3: Make certain your Android is placed to connect being a ‘Media Device’ (MTP)

Go to settings / storage. Next, check out more options (typically upper left dotted area, determined by your device) and click on ‘USB Computer connection’. Next select the ‘Media Device’ (MTP) checkbox. If already checked, try unchecking it, exiting beyond settings, then ever coming back again and rechecking it.

If you do not find this choice in ‘Settings/Storage’, begin the next intervention.

Set in order to connect as a Media Device (MTP)

Now check in case your device appears as a drive in ‘My Computer’ . If not, continue reading below.

Intervention #4: try to get in touch as a ‘USB Mass Storage’ device

This can be an option that Android supports whereby your device storage plus your external SD Card (if any) will likely be mounted as USB mass storage volumes in Windows.

Go to settings / more settings. Next, click ‘USB utilities’, then ‘Connect Storage to PC’ and ‘Turn on USB storage’. It may prompt one to turn off USB debugging for those who have it enabled, and it could prompt one to unplug and re-plug your device. It will also install any needed drivers.

USB Storage step1USB Storage step2USB Storage step3

When done, click into ‘My Computer’ and see if the new volume(s) are there. It may not quite be the same as identifying your Android device (since and it's also doing something more important, mounting your Android storage as volumes in Windows), but you will be able to move files backwards and forwards just as you'll any normal USB drive.

Intervention #5: Enable USB debugging

This may be the matter in cases where maybe you have installed certain backup apps on your own Android that want USB debugging and other cases where you may have installed Android desktop clients that speak with and/or backup your device.

To enable USB debugging go to your Android’s settings, then find and then click ‘Developer Options’. Click ‘ok’ on the warning screen, then enable ‘Developer Options’  (top right) and appearance the box beside ‘USB debugging’. Click ‘ok’ with the final warning screen.

Toggle USB debugging step1Toggle USB debugging step2Toggle USB debugging step3Toggle USB debugging step4

Cannot find USB Debugging in setting? In the latest versions of Android (4.2+) this option may be hidden. To unhide it, visit ‘settings’ then ‘About phone’, then scroll as a result of ‘Build Number’ and tap it seven times. (Note which it will take three taps for the your device to acknowledge that you simply are attempting to unhide ‘developer’s options’. Persist plus it will happen.

Once USB debugging is enabled, unplug and replug your device in your PC, to see if that solves the problem.

Intervention #6: check should your device has a faulty base

At this aspect, if nothing works, you may consider that you simply have a trouble with your hardware. If you have had trouble getting the device to charge, or if you'll want to manipulate the position of the wire to get it to charge, they are all clues the problem might be your charging base. (This can happen in the event you frequently raise your device while using charging wire, the connection is physically damaged).

One last thing you might try: backup your Android (by using connecting for a PC wirelessly; there are many apps that could do it in your case), once you are satisfied that things are all backed up, restore your Android to factory settings, to see if that solves the issue. But I actually do not recommend you do this, as it could be a little a  hassle. Better show it to a serviceperson that can tell you if the challenge is in the hardware, and take it from there.

Hope it will help. If you solve this concern by any means different through the interventions above, please tell me about it inside the comments section below.

Has been reviewing software since 2006 when he soon started

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