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Hide Drive letters problem?
http://safelyremove.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=366
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Author:  GregDude [ Fri Feb 26, 2010 3:28 am ]
Post subject:  Hide Drive letters problem?

I enabled the 'Hide drive letters when there are no media inserted' option.
I noticed that Device Manager showed a bunch of disabled drives which it had not done before. I figure USBSafelyRemove was responsible and ignored it. Later I disabled the hide drive letters option. Device manager showed WPD Filesystem Volume Driver (Error Code 10, Yellow Exlamation) beside some drives. I eventually figured out how to resolve this.

My concern is that USBSafelyRemove may not be dealing with USB ports or drive letters correctly and causing these issues. I am not sure this great program is responsible but thought I'd not the issues I'm seeing anyway to compare with other peoples experience.

System:
Windows 7 64bit, latest updates.
Intel Q6600 CPU
MSI P35 MB
4GB RAM
Monitor with USB ports, USB hub, various USB devices and portable disk drives and storage devices.

Author:  mufunyo [ Fri Jul 16, 2010 12:34 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Hide Drive letters problem?

I can confirm this. It took me quite a while to figure this one out exactly as tons of people are having problems with the WPD Filesystem drivers and Microsoft support representatives are... unhelpful at best. Anyway, to outline things concisely:

- Windows Vista/7/Server 2008 (R2) all make a WPD instance of every connected USB storage volume
- This WPD driver will malfunction when it has no driveletter
- USB Safely Remove has a feature to remove driveletters of unused card reader slots

Thus, it follows, that if you enable the remove driveletter feature, you will get malfunctioning WPD devices in your device manager. You will also notice that for every slot you insert a card into, one of the malfunctioning WPD devices will blossom into a working version with the label of the inserted card as its device name.

There are two workarounds for these symptoms:
- Insert cards into all the card reader slots
- Disable the remove driveletter feature in USB Safely Remove

Of course, neither of those are satisfactory. It would be nice if the creators of USB Safely Remove could either implement a workaround, or negotiate a fix in the WPD drivers from Microsoft. From what I understand from all the threads on Microsoft TechNet, several vendor-specific card reader drivers implement the same behaviour as USB Safely Remove (that is, they remove unused driveletters), resulting in the same error from the WPD drivers.

Hope this info helps!

Author:  Igor [ Fri Jul 16, 2010 7:22 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Hide Drive letters problem?

mufunyo wrote:
I can confirm this. It took me quite a while to figure this one out exactly as tons of people are having problems with the WPD Filesystem drivers and Microsoft support representatives are... unhelpful at best. Anyway, to outline things concisely:

- Windows Vista/7/Server 2008 (R2) all make a WPD instance of every connected USB storage volume
- This WPD driver will malfunction when it has no driveletter
- USB Safely Remove has a feature to remove driveletters of unused card reader slots

Thus, it follows, that if you enable the remove driveletter feature, you will get malfunctioning WPD devices in your device manager. You will also notice that for every slot you insert a card into, one of the malfunctioning WPD devices will blossom into a working version with the label of the inserted card as its device name.

There are two workarounds for these symptoms:
- Insert cards into all the card reader slots
- Disable the remove driveletter feature in USB Safely Remove

Of course, neither of those are satisfactory. It would be nice if the creators of USB Safely Remove could either implement a workaround, or negotiate a fix in the WPD drivers from Microsoft. From what I understand from all the threads on Microsoft TechNet, several vendor-specific card reader drivers implement the same behaviour as USB Safely Remove (that is, they remove unused driveletters), resulting in the same error from the WPD drivers.

Hope this info helps!

mufunyo, many thanks for taking time to give us some info on this problem. We have already been reported about this problem by our users, however the only negative thing that is caused by this problem was "exclamation mark" and "error code 10" in the volume properties in device manager. And nothing more. Moreover if you you try to remove drive letter in Windows from a drive I suppose you will see the same "exclamation" mark and error code 10 in the device properties. So we decided to leave the things where they are for awhile. Of course if we will not receive reports that this issue causes some other really negative problems.

Author:  mufunyo [ Fri Jul 16, 2010 1:50 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Hide Drive letters problem?

Igor wrote:
So we decided to leave the things where they are for awhile. Of course if we will not receive reports that this issue causes some other really negative problems.

I haven't found any real negative effects from this, other than the nagging feeling of having a device manager that isn't "perfect" - but that's just me. However, I don't use WPD functionality at all, so I can't comment on any problems people might encounter when they do. For instance, Winamp and Windows Media Player use WPD volumes for Media Library syncing-- I could imagine one of those applications might encounter problems when a WPD volume stops working, but if you haven't received any reports about that I wouldn't worry too much.

What might be helpful in any case though, is to inform Microsoft of the issue, because they tend to listen to developers better than to end users. The simplest solution is for Microsoft to just fix the bug in their WPD drivers. It would certainly be nice to all those people over on TechNet who have been having grief over it.

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