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I have a SanDisk Cruzer that suddenly stopped being recognized today. It's two years old and has been through the washing machine a few times (though not recently) so it's entirely possible the hardware failed.

What happens is this: I'll put it in the computer, the LED in the drive will turn on, and Windows will say that it doesn't recognize the USB. I've attempted to use recovery tools like Recova, but since it doesn't show up as an actual drive, they haven't found it. I've gone into Disk Management and it doesn't show up there, so I can't assign a drive letter. I've tried restarting, unplugging, reinstalling the drivers, but nothing has worked. Some of the files are pretty important; is there any inexpensive way to recover the data?

I've been backing it up fairly regularly, so the only files I really need are from the last week or so, if that makes it any easier.

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    Try it in another computer just to rule out the issue being something with your system. – martineau Mar 14 '14 at 3:44
  • No luck, also tried it on both Linux and Mac and it's not working there either. – Matt Mar 14 '14 at 18:01
  • In that case, given that you can't even see it in Disk Management, I think you're out of luck unfortunately. Recovery tools need to be able to at least detect the device, regardless of whether is has a drive letter assigned to it or not. Might be a good idea to start checking your pockets before throwing your clothes in the washing machine... – martineau Mar 14 '14 at 18:56
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Sometimes happens, and that's weird: it also happened to me, a day I was working with my USB drive and then suddenly the activity indicator led kept static, without flashing.

You need to download some free tools that I'll put in the steps below:

  1. Download Chip Genius (I shared it on my OneDrive).
  2. Extract the content to your desktop, plug-in your USB to the computer and run the exe (it's important to first plug-in the USB).
  3. A window like the next will be shown; you'll need to keep the VID and PID values):
  4. Now go to this page (Flashboot) and write the PID and VID values in the corresponding textboxes, and click on Search.
  5. In this next screen you will now search in the SIZE (GB) column the size your memory has (it's important to choose the EXACT size, in my case was 8GB.) The UTILS column will provide you the tool you need to download, so you need to download the tool which matches your USB size (if you see nothing but a blank space keep scrolling until you find the name of the program you'll need to download).
  6. (If there's no download link to the program but you've found the program's name, go to this page , search the program's name and download it from there, or you can also google).
  7. After the download, the only thing you need to do is run the program and let it do the rest of the job.

This was my selected program

NOTE: You maybe will need to play a bit with the configuration of the program in order to achieve your goal.

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