Sometimes, while copying files from one disk to another, you may get an error showing that the disk is “write protected”. This tutorial is for handling that error.
What is Write protection?
As the term explains itself, Write protection means that the disk is protected against write operations. i.e., you can’t write on the disk. You are only allowed to read and copy data from that disk, but unable to write or delete any content of that disk.
Why this happens to USB drives?
This can happen because of any one of these two reasons.
1. Virus attack. Viruses sometimes change the access to be write protected, which may lead to this problem.
2. Enabling the Lock switch. Some USB device has a lock switch. If you lock that using the switch, then it will make the access restricted from write.
Way to remove/disable Write protection
A. Searching for the Lock Switch
If you have locked the switch by mistake then, the only way is to search for the switch and unlock it. There is no other way to remove the write protection from that device.
B. Registry Editing
If plan A fails, then there comes plan B. You have to do a small registry editing to disable Write Protection.
Steps to be followed:
1. Press Windows + R to open the Run Window an then type regedit and press Enter to open the
2. Navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE -> SYSTEM -> CurrrentControlSet -> Control. Search for StorageDevicePolicies.
If that doesn’t exist, then add add a new key named StorageDevicePolicies. Now navigate to that and create a new D-WORD(32 bit), WriteProtect.
3. Change the value of the key WriteProtect to 0.
C. Formatting the USB Drive
You can also format the USB drive to make it write protection free. But here, first you have to Low level Format and then format normally. For Low level format, you can use this software.
1. Now open the Device Manager by right clicking on My Computer icon and selecting Manage.
2. Select Disk Management from left pane. Now right click on the drive and select Format.
D. Another Low Level Formatting tool
If you are still facing the problem, even after following previous three methods. You may use HDD LLF Low Level Format Tool to format your USB Flash Drive. Many users have found this tool very useful. You can find a link to this tool, below in the comment section.
D. Solutions suggested by our Visitors
A. One of our visitors Tom has suggested a method to solve this problem. You can find the method in the comment section.
B. You can also see the Steps suggested by one of our visitors, John Mitchell Here
Some faults of USB Flash Drives can be caused by different hardware issues like broken circuitry, misalignment of input contacts etc. In that case you can also have “write protection” problem. Actually in Flash drive data is stored in an array of memory cells (each memory cell contains a binary ‘1’ or ‘0’). To write a ‘1’, a threshold voltage is applied to a memory cell, where no applied voltage means ‘0’. This writing operation can be blocked by using a lock switch, changing Operating Software configuration or if Flash drives’s write circuity is broken. Only for the first two cases the problem can be solved by following above mentioned methods.
If you have any other method to solve this type of problem, you may add your solution in the comment section.