Safely Remove Hardware Icon is Not Displayed

Satheesh C B | Saturday, August 01, 2009 | 0 comments

Sometimes when you insert  your Flash drive , the notification button on your taskbar  may not displayed.This  makes it impossible for you to unplug your device safely.As everyone knows it is  not a  good practice to unplug a USB device from the computer


This is a common problem  among most flash drive users. However, there are many solutions to this problem. The taskbar can be set to hide inactive icons. Check to see if 8-1-2009 10-39-42 PMyour device is concealed  among the hidden icons. You can  do so by clicking on the arrow near  the clock that can be found on the  bottom, right corner of the screen.  If the  icon is there then you need to  unhide it to avoid future scares of this  nature. To do this, Right-click on the taskbar  and click “Properties”.  Uncheck the “Hide inactive icons” check box.  Click “OK”.

If the icon isn’t to be found, even  after clicking on the arrow then you  can invoke the dialog box by clicking  on “Start | Run”. Enter the following  line of text “RUNDLL32 SHELL32.DLL,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll”  and hit the [Enter] key. The dialog  box will open on your screen.


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Though  this will serve your purpose, it isn’t  a permanent solution. It is better  to have the icon pop up every time  rather than type in this line of text in the command prompt each time. Here’s how to enforce its presence:

  • Click “Start | Control Panel”.
  • Double-click on “Taskbar and Start Menu Properties”.
  • Click “Customize”. 
  • Select “Always Show” from the  drop down list that corresponds to “Safely Remove Hardware”. 
  • Click “OK”.

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The “Safely Remove Hardware” icon  will now be displayed permanently  on the taskbar. The problem of  the missing icon is often solved by  a simple reboot of the computer.
However, it is best to follow these  steps rather than unplug your device  directly and risk data loss and  corruption of the device altogether.


You can also try the following method to solve this issue:-


1) With a USB drive inserted ,Open Control Panel>System Properties>Device Manager>Disk Drives

2) Click on your hardware in the list and select "Properties" again.

3) Click on "Policies". Normally the "Optimize for quick removal" button will be active - but don't change this. Instead click on the "Safely Remove Hardware" link in "Optimize for performance"

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4) Again select your hardware and click "Stop". Click "OK". This will stop your hardware and it can now be safely removed. This is a work around for the missing icon but you should not need to do it more than once - the "Safely Remove Hardware" icon should now appear normally in the Notification Area whenever ANY removable device is reinserted - hopefully for good.


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5) Make sure that the icon is not hidden in "Customize Notifications" as described above. This has worked for a USB flash drive (thumb drive) in XP but might work for other removable hardware as well.

USB Disk Ejector

A program that allows you to quickly remove USB devices in Windows. It was originally designed to remove only USB pen drives but will now eject any USB device. It can be run as a non-visual command line program or a normal gui program. Its very useful if you have a USB flash/pen drive, especially if you use a menu such as PStart or the Portable Apps launcher.

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downloadfile  Download  |466KB | Freeware | SysReq:Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista

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