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USB-Stick mounted as Fixed Or as Removable

usb fixed removable windows 10

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#1 wimb

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 02:49 PM

mounted as Fixed   ==   mounted as Removable

USB_Stick_Fixed-2019-08-07_161753.png == USB_Stick_Remov-2019-08-07_162947.png

 

In Windows 10 an USB-Stick with two partitions as proposed by Guimenez can be easily made with Disk Management.

 

Sometimes but not always I get that the USB-Stick After Repartitioning is mounted as Fixed drive.

 

It turns out that this is caused by a change in the Registry.

 

If I simply return to an earlier version of the registry then the same USB-Stick without any changes is mounted as Removable Device.

 

Which change in the registry is causing this behaviour that the USB-Stick is sometimes mounted as Fixed device ?



#2 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 04:23 PM

I don't get it.

 

Compare the two registries, since you have them.

 

You know, like:

 

https://www.nirsoft....anges_view.html

 

99.99 % relevant changes will be in SYSTEM or in SOFTWARE (personally I would look in SYSTEM first).

:duff:

Wonko



#3 wimb

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 04:34 PM

Compare the two registries, since you have them.

 

https://www.nirsoft....anges_view.html

 

 

Sure I will do that.

 

But is there a simple way (some Windows 10 setting) to change between Fixed and Removable  ? 

In this case it has nothing to do with some extra installed Filter Driver Or with Flipping the Removable bit as used in the past for older Windows versions.

It is somewhere hidden in the Windows 10 registry only ....



#4 steve6375

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 05:08 PM

So if you run RMPrepUSB, does it list the disk as Fixed for one Registry setting and Removable for a different Registry setting?

 

I was not aware that this could be changed in the Registry?



#5 wimb

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 05:32 PM

So if you run RMPrepUSB, does it list the disk as Fixed for one Registry setting and Removable for a different Registry setting?

 

I was not aware that this could be changed in the Registry?

 

In RMPrepUSB the USB-Stick is always seen as Removable

 

seen as Fixed  == seen as Removable

Fixed_Steve-2019-08-07_192859.png == Removable_Steve-2019-08-07_192004.png



#6 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 05:37 PM

Only as a side note.

 

I thought that Windows 10 (rightly or wrongly, that is up to debate) had changed the main "feature" (please note the double quotes), that was in earlier versions of windows:

1) removable -> only one partition visible/accessible/mounted to a drive letter

or

2) fixed -> ALL partitions visible/accessible/mounted to a drive letter

 

Essentially that was the reason to use (or not use) the dummydisk or reversed dummy disk drivers.

 

AFAICR/AFAIK Windows 10 mounts all partitions anyway, so - besides your interesting observation -  what is the actual problem?

 

 

:duff:

Wonko



#7 steve6375

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 05:42 PM

I am confused too? What is the difference between the two Disk manager screenshots? They look the same.

What do you mean by 'seen as Fixed' and 'seen as Removable'?

 

Are you referring to the Quick Removal policy for USB drives and whether filesystem is cached or not?



#8 wimb

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Posted 07 August 2019 - 06:40 PM

The problem is that when the USB-Stick is seen as Fixed drive , then it is not accepted anymore by MediaCreationTool used to make USB-Stick for Install of Windows 10.

 

In the screenshots you see the difference just below Schijf 5 - Standaard is a Basic Fixed drive and Verwisselbaar is Removable drive in your language.

Right click on Schijf 5 and you get the different Properties of the drive, just given as an illustration (not as a problem  ;) )

 

I don't know for the USB-Stick as seen in Windows 10 as Basic Fixed drive, How to change it into Removable drive

So once the registry has decided to make it a Fixed drive, then it becomes useless for MediaCreationTool, that I normally use to format such USB-Stick ....

 

The only way for me to make the USB-Stick seen as Removable again is to use RegistryBackup and change to earlier registry settings.

Luckily I have such registry backup available, otherwise it would mean a reinstall of Windows 10 .... which is quite easy in case of VHD WIMBOOT  :)

 

Cannot Find USB-Flashstation

Fixed_MediaCrea-2019-08-07_211655.png



#9 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 07:46 AM

It is in the system registry file.

 

Restore of only the system registry can make that the Fixed USB-Stick is seen as Removable again.

 

How to USB-Stick in Windows 10 seen as Fixed change into seen as Removable ?  :frusty:



#10 steve6375

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 08:52 AM

Microsoft's Media Creation Tool allows us to make a bootable Windows USB DVD or 'Flash drive' - according their documentation.

I have a Corsair GTX Flash drive which appears as a Fixed Disk and a Corsair Voyager which appears as a Removable drive.

Both drives have two primary partitions and both drives are seen by the Media Creation Tool.

 

You will need to do some work to compare the two Registry snapshots and try to find out what the causative entries are,



#11 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 09:17 AM

It is in the system registry file.


You will need to do some work to compare the two Registry snapshots and try to find out what the causative entries are,

And we are back to post #2.

 

:duff:

Wonko



#12 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 09:26 AM

You will need to do some work to compare the two Registry snapshots and try to find out what the causative entries are,

 

There are so many changes in the system registry, so that it is difficult to say what the causative entries are ....



#13 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 10:04 AM

There are so many changes in the system registry, so that it is difficult to say what the causative entries are ....

 

There can't be that many (that make actually sense).

You want to compare only ControiSet001 vs. Controlset001

And within ControlSet001, try filtering only entries that contain USB.

 

Before that, check MountedDevices.

On older NT, a volume on a disk that was fixed was Disk Signature + offset to the volume, whilst Removable media would begin with:

5C 00 3F 00 3F 00 5C 00 53 00 54 00 4F 00 52 00 
41 00 47 00 45 00 23 00 52 00 65 00 6D 00 6F 00 
76 00 61 00 62 00 6C 00 65 00 4D 00 65 00 64 00 
69 00 61 00 

i.e. \??\STORAGE#RemovableMedia

 

:duff:

Wonko



#14 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 10:12 AM

NonRemovable-2019-08-08_120115.png

 

I found something

 

There is  a NonRemovable value equal 1 in Control\Class key  of the device which normally is not there

 

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Class\{36fc9e60-c465-11cf-8056-444553540000}\0009

 

This brings back the Save Removal in the taskbar and the Device Properties have now the Policiy for Removal again.

 

However it is only part of the problem, since the Device is seen in Disk Management as Standaard (being a Basic Fixed disk)

 



#15 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 10:31 AM

MountedDevices have for drive P: and Q: the DiskSignature and don't have the code common for Removable

 

MountedDev-2019-08-08_122926.png



#16 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 10:37 AM

There is  a NonRemovable value equal 1 in Control\Class key  of the device which normally is not there

 

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Class\{36fc9e60-c465-11cf-8056-444553540000}\0009

 

This brings back the Save Removal in the taskbar and the Device Properties have now the Policiy for Removal again.

 

However it is only part of the problem, since the Device is seen in Disk Management as Standaard (being a Basic Fixed disk)

Yep, that trick dates back to XP to remove the device from the Safely Remove Hardware "pop-up" (to avoid litttering the list with external hard disks that are "permanently" connected to the PC and disconnect them by mistake), see (Spanish, you may want to use Google Translate):

 

http://www.miguelms.com/usbnorem.htm

 

 

 

MountedDevices have for drive P: and Q: the DiskSignature and don't have the code common for Removable

Which is good, but I have no idea if Windows 10 actually behaves like previous versions (since it actually mounts all partitions on "Removeble Devices" anyway).

:duff:

Wonko



#17 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 10:51 AM

Thanks for the interesting info on Safely Remove Hardware  :)

 

I went back to the the system registry case where the device is seen as Removable (= Verwisselbaar  in Dutch)

 

Indeed the MountedDevices key now corresponds to Removable device

 

MountedDev_Remov-2019-08-08_124718.png



#18 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 12:40 PM

I went back to the the system registry case where the device is seen as Removable (= Verwisselbaar  in Dutch)

 

Indeed the MountedDevices key now corresponds to Removable device

Does it/they? :dubbio:

If I read correctly the screenshot you posted:

1) BOTH drives P: and Q: belong to the USB stick

2) drive P: entry begins with 5F 00

3) drive Q: entry begins with 7b 00 :w00t:

 

If you weren't such an old and respectable member of the board :worship: , besides an old friend :), and had I not been in an exceptionally good mood today :ermm: ,  I would have probably told you:

1) we DO NOT §@ç#ing care about your desktop  :ranting2:

2) you should post readable screenshots (ONLY of the relevant information window(s)) :lightbulb:

3) even better save the key to a .reg file and post that INSTEAD :realmad:

 

My grumpiness must be softening up with age .... ;)

 

Seriously, do export the mounted devices key (both the "fixed" and the "removable" one) besides possibly understanding what are the actual values (which are seemingly not "removable media"  and certainly not disk signature) maybe I could be able to put a date to the UUID (or do it yourself):

http://reboot.pro/to...mounteddevices/

so at least one would have a timeline on when it happened first time.

 

:duff:

Wonko

 

P.S. Another form for "removable media" could be something beginning with:

5F 00 3F 00 3F 00 5F 00 55 00 53 00 42 00 53 00 
54 00 4F 00 52 00 23 00 44 00 69 00 73 00 6B 00 
26 00 56 00 65 00 6E 00 5F 

i.e. _??_USBSTOR#Disk&Ven_



#19 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 01:22 PM

Here are some better screenshots for the case that USB-Stick is seen as Removable

MountedDevices for Drive Q is beginning with a guid

 

MountedDev_Remov-2019-08-08_151557.png == DosDevP-2019-08-08_152502.png == DosDevQ-2019-08-08_151702.png

 

I am sorry that the previous screenshots were not readable enough.

 

Attached File  MountedDevices_Remov.txt   13.69KB   39 downloads

 

================================================================

 

And when the USB-Stick is seen as Fixed Drive we have:

 

MountedDev_Fixed-2019-08-08_153939.png

 

Attached File  MountedDevices_Fixed.txt   9.29KB   27 downloads

 

Download uuid.exe program



#20 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 04:11 PM

Hmmm. :dubbio:

The "Fixed" file is perfectly "normal".
The "Remov" one is "queer".

The Q: value is actually a UUID: {944d75b4-b74c-11e9-91f0-3252cb53659d} followed by #00000006D6100000

It is actually a seemingly valid (generated) UUID:
uuid -d 944d75b4-b74c-11e9-91f0-3252cb53659d
encode: STR: 944d75b4-b74c-11e9-91f0-3252cb53659d
SIV: 197127937593995330478615059618449286557
decode: variant: DCE 1.1, ISO/IEC 11578:1996
version: 1 (time and node based)
content: time: 2019-08-05 06:45:14.501266.0 UTC
clock: 4592 (usually random)
node: 32:52:cb:53:65:9d (local unicast)


The P: value is a more normal: _??_USBSTOR#Disk&Ven_Kingston&Prod_DataTraveler_3.0&Rev_#60A44C425294F27039868C15&0#{53f56307-b6bf-11d0-94f2-00a0c91efb8b}

(the {53f56307-b6bf-11d0-94f2-00a0c91efb8b} is "normal" https://docs.microso...vinterface-disk )

Volume P: UUID decodes to:
uuid -d a6760a2a-b90c-11e9-91f7-2c56dc97ff86
encode: STR: a6760a2a-b90c-11e9-91f7-2c56dc97ff86
SIV: 221264744538551325193628704403545915270
decode: variant: DCE 1.1, ISO/IEC 11578:1996
version: 1 (time and node based)
content: time: 2019-08-07 12:12:39.501060.2 UTC
clock: 4599 (usually random)
node: 2c:56:dc:97:ff:86 (global unicast)

volume Q: UUID decodes to:

uuid -d a6760a23-b90c-11e9-91f7-2c56dc97ff86
encode: STR: a6760a23-b90c-11e9-91f7-2c56dc97ff86
SIV: 221264743983954187593778341248738262918
decode: variant: DCE 1.1, ISO/IEC 11578:1996
version: 1 (time and node based)
content: time: 2019-08-07 12:12:39.501059.5 UTC
clock: 4599 (usually random)
node: 2c:56:dc:97:ff:86 (global unicast)

In theory, the 7th of August (at 12:12) is the first time the device has ben connected to the system.
The node: 2c:56:dc:97:ff:86 should be your machine's MAC address.

Then, where does the node: 32:52:cb:53:65:9d come from?
And how can an UUID be generated a couple days before?

 

Were you playing with this stick and a VM? :unsure:

:duff:
Wonko



#21 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 04:43 PM

I have never used VM

 

Cannot explain the values, but most data result from 2019-08-07 and indeed in the morning I did the partitioning.

 

On partitioning the USB-Stick then Windows 10 decided to register the device as a Fixed drive.

 

It is only occurring sometimes and most of the time it just is registered as a Removable device.

 

In my opininion it should not occur that Windows 10 registers the USB-Stick as a Fixed drive.

As a Fixed drive the USB-Stick cannot be used by MediaCreationTool (fails to recognize the as Fixed registered USB-Stick)



#22 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 06:23 PM

Could it be (I am just guessing) partitioning while in UEFI vs. partittioning while in BIOS mode?

 

Only to clear your report, was it before a brand new, never partitioned device or you re-partitioned it?

 

And - even if it was already partitioned - did it already have two partitions or not?

 

What could have happened on the 5th of August?

 

Thought esperiment (that you can carry in practice).

 

Boot with the "Remov" Registry.

Disconnect (if connected) the stick.

Manually delete from Mounted devices the two entries (twice, once for each partition) for the drive letter and volume UUID.

Reboot (just in case).

Connect the stick.

Is it now Removable or Fixed?

 

Repair after having booted with the "Fixed" Registry.

 

:duff:

Wonko



#23 wimb

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Posted 08 August 2019 - 07:48 PM

The USB-Stick has been used already for half a year, mainly with MediaCreationTool that involves also partitioning of the device.

This was the first time that I manually created two partitions using Disk Management.

In all cases booting with the 1903 version of Windows 10 x64 OS in UEFI mode.

 

There was nothing special on the 5th of August.

 

I carried out the procedure using the registry of the "Removable case" and with manually removal of MountedDevices entries.

After reboot and reconnecting the USB-Stick, it is seen again as Removable drive.



#24 Wonko the Sane

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 08:21 AM

I carried out the procedure using the registry of the "Removable case" and with manually removal of MountedDevices entries.

After reboot and reconnecting the USB-Stick, it is seen again as Removable drive.

And what is the contents of the MountedDevices now?

 

Theory:

Either *something* happened on the 5 th of August or for sheer coincidence a UUID was generated which decodeds to the 5 th of August

now, with the MountedDevices keys cleared and re-connection (and re-sensing it as removable) the FAT32 partition (drive letter Q:\ ) on the stick might:

1) have the same value of UUID as before (which should mean that it is "stored" somewhere and re-applied to MountedDevices OR:

2) it has a brand new UUID (which should mean that *something* recreates it on-the-fly).

 

Both of these behaviours (I would prefer, if I could choose, #2) might  be logged by procmon or similar.

 

On the other hand, doing the test with the "Fixed" (and cleared MountedDevices) might give two results:

1) the stick is still fixed (which would confirm that *somewhere* else in the Registry there is something that forces it to "fixed" OR that something that would force it to be removable is missing

2) the stick becomes removable, and then there must have been something that forced it once to be fixed, and if it is removable, which UUID is inside the Q:\ key?

 

Other tests:

1) what happens (on both "versions" of the Registry) if you manually change the disk signature?
2) what happens (on both "versions" of the Registry) if you reformat it to a single partition?

 

:duff:

Wonko



#25 wimb

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Posted 09 August 2019 - 08:40 AM

In theory, the 7th of August (at 12:12) is the first time the device has ben connected to the system.
The node: 2c:56:dc:97:ff:86 should be your machine's MAC address.

Then, where does the node: 32:52:cb:53:65:9d come from?
And how can an UUID be generated a couple days before?

 

 

 

MountedDev_CleanSystem-2019-08-09_122401.png == DosDev_Q_CleanSystem-2019-08-09_122445.png

 

I connected the same USB-Stick to a Clean System. It is registered as a Removable Device.

In that case all 3 UUID's correspond to date and time of connecting the USB-Stick.

And all 3 nodes correspond to the MAC adres of my machine.

 

Attached File  UUID_MountedDev_CleanSystem.txt   1.29KB   29 downloads

 

Conclusion:

Repartitioning an USB-Stick results sometimes in registering it as Fixed disk. I think this is a bug of Windows 10 .

 

So the strange node is not on my machine AFAIK and there is no explanation for the UUID of drive Q: related to a few days before the experiments were done .... :unsure:







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