Please Insert a Disk into USB Drive: How to Fix This Error?

By Dominic Chooper on July 22, 2023

Sometimes, when you insert a removable disk in your PC it may not work and may return a message “Please insert a disk into USB drive.”

It will show zero bytes used and available in its properties and ‘Unallocated’ or ‘No Media’ in Disk Management. It will also not allow formatting the drive.

This is a common error that will disallow accessing or using the drive and the data stored in it.

Luckily there are a couple of easy and quick fixes to it. Read on to know them and follow them to rectify this specific error when you encounter it.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

What Causes Please Insert a Disk into USB Drive Error?

Please Insert a Disk into USB Drive

One common reason to encounter the “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error is a drive letter may not be assigned or the old one is assigned to another drive and needs to be changed.

The value data of the Error Mode may also be set incorrectly in the Windows Registry Editor which may cause this error.

The error may also result from any physical damage sustained by the USB drive. In addition, there are a few other reasons for this error to occur. These are:

In short, “Please insert a disk into USB drive” is an error caused when the device is inaccessible or not recognized by the operating system installed in your PC.

There are quite a few simple and advanced solutions to this particular issue, as you will find described in detail in the following section of this article.

Ways to Fix Please Insert a Disk into USB Drive Error

The “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error can be fixed by assigning a new drive letter. Along with it, performing a quick format, identifying and fixing bad sectors on the drive, or running a set of diskpart commands in the Command Prompt may also help.

There are also a few other easy fixes to this issue, such as:

The driver may need updating – Go to Start > Device Manager > Disk drives > Select the drive > Right-click on it > Click on Update driver > Select “Search automatically for updated drivers.”

Running the Windows troubleshooter – Go to the Start Menu > Select Settings > Update & Security > Troubleshoot > Additional troubleshooters > Select Hardware and Devices > Run the troubleshooter > Wait and follow the on-screen instructions > restart your PC.

Scanning for any hardware changes – Use the Device Manager and select the computer monitor icon at the top to Scan for hardware changes to make the system compatible with the changes in hardware. You may also choose the particular drive, right-click on it and choose the same from the drop-down options.

Use another port – Assuming that your drive is okay, you may use a different USB port if there is an issue with the connectivity in the one that you use often.

Heat or cool the drive – Strange as it may sound, heating up or cooling the USB drive manually may also work sometimes. Use a hair dryer or compressed air to heat or cool the drive while it is connected to the PC. Wait for a minute and remove and insert the drive a couple of times. Though not a sure-shot solution, it will work sometimes.

You may also use a reliable third-party tool to fix the issue or the specific repair utility of the manufacturer of the USB drive to fix the issue.

Method 1: Assign a New Drive Letter and Quick Format the Drive

The drive may not be allocated due to the missing drive letter. Assign a new drive letter to it using the Disk Management utility to resolve the “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error.

STEPS TO FOLLOW:

Disk Management window

Selecting New Simple Volume

This will open the New Simple Volume wizard.

Click on the Next button > Click again on the Next button in the following window > Select a letter from the drop-down options for the drive > Select Next > Check the box next to Quick Format > Click on the Next button > Click on Finish in the New simple Volume wizard window.

It is quite easy to perform the consecutive steps in the following windows. Just follow the on-screen instructions.

Now you will see that a drive letter is allocated and it shows that the drive is Healthy (Logical Drive).

Healthy

It will show in and will be accessible from the File Explorer. You can now go ahead and use it as you like. You can even format the drive again according to your chosen file system now.

Method 2: From the Registry Editor

Often, changing the value data of the Error Mode in the Windows Registry Editor may fix the issue.

STEPS TO FOLLOW:

Typing regedit

In the Registry Editor window, click on the small arrow next to each of the following folder to expand them in the exact same order as mentioned below:

When you reach there, look for ErrorMode on the right side of the window.

Looking for ErrorMode

Selecting Modify

This will open the Edit DWORD (32-bit) Value window.

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Edit DWORD

Close the Registry Editor window and then restart your system. This will resolve the “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error.

Method 3: Run a Set of Diskpart Commands in the Command Prompt

You can use the Command Prompt to run a few diskpart commands to fix the issue with the USB drive.

STEPS TO FOLLOW:

In the Command Prompt window, type in the following commands, wait for each execution to complete, hitting the Enter button on your keyboard after every command:

command: diskpart list disk select disk 1

This will clean the drive and create a new partition.

Finally, type exit to close the Command Prompt window and restart your system. After it reboots, insert the removable drive and check whether you can access it or not.

Method 4: Check for Bad Sectors and Fix Them

If there are bad sectors in the disk, it will cause “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error. Use the Windows built-in tool – CHKDSK in the Command Prompt to check them and fix them.

STEPS TO FOLLOW:

Typing chkdsk d: /f /r

This will check and fix the errors in the drive making it usable again.

Conclusion

Your removable disk drive may face issues, and it is a quite common event.

There are also quite a few easy fixes for it, as this article points out.

Try them when you face the “Please insert a disk into USB drive” error to fix it quickly and easily.