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Flash Drive Only Shows Shortcuts

Wednesday, February 4th, 2015 by | Filed Under: File & Disk Management

M. Hassan writes:

Warm regards, Every time when I plug my USB, it shows shortcuts only. I tried to clean my USB drive by formatting and by scanning as well. It shows no virus when scanned. but continuously shows copied files as shortcuts. some other files with extension .lnk are also present. I have scanned my PC but no viruses were found. when I keep my USBG plugged in for a while, my antivirus continuously gives notification shown in image as attachment. I need your assistance.

You aren’t the only person having this issue and the general consensus seems to be that the issue is caused by some type of virus.  In addition to running a virus scan, I would also suggest running a malware scan on your computer.

Here’s a possible fix, but it doesn’t seem to work for everyone.

Here are the instructions using Windows 7.  First, open up your start menu and type Folder Options in the search box. Click on the result.


When the Folder Options Windows opens, select the View tab, then scroll down under advanced options and check Show hidden files, folders or drives. You can always uncheck it when you’re finished, so you won’t be bothered with hidden files.


Now, put that USB drive in your computer.  Type cmd in your search box and click on the result or just hit enter.


In this case, let’s say your drive letter is F.  Type the following attrib -h -s -r -a /s /d F:\*.*

If your drive uses another letter, substitute that letter for F. There’s a space between d and the drive letter, so make sure to include that.

Now delete those shortcuts and any other suspicious files. I’d suggest running a program like Malware Bytes on your drive.

~ Cynthia

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3 Responses to “Flash Drive Only Shows Shortcuts”

  1. Bob says:

    SMAD antivirus fixed the problem for me.

  2. Wolfgang says:

    The SMADAV antivirus, which is free on internet, takes out all these viruses. The strange thing is that Norton and some of the other guys do not pick up always these viruses.
    SMADAV also shows hidden files and unhide most of them.(The viruses also has a tendency to make files hidden files.

    Some of those viruses change your file attribute to a system file. I use the Attribute Changer 6.20 to make the changes.

  3. Vanchus says:

    Thank you. Just installed SMADAV and it worked.

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