Windows 10: How to force-eject an external drive?

Discus and support How to force-eject an external drive? in Windows 10 Drivers and Hardware to solve the problem; Switching from Mac to PC has in some regard been not difficult, but there are difficult moments A recurring problem with pretty much all my... Discussion in 'Windows 10 Drivers and Hardware' started by battlezone, Feb 12, 2018.

  1. How to force-eject an external drive?


    Switching from Mac to PC has in some regard been not difficult, but there are difficult moments

    A recurring problem with pretty much all my external drives is that I frequently can't eject them because "a program is using it. " This happens even if I close all running programs, although some things must still be running in the background, including Dashlane and Avast. Using File Explorer and killing tasks does not work for me, since I have no idea which tasks are related to external hard drives.

    On the Mac I could always eject mounted drives with Disk Utility. Is there a similar feature on the PC? Based on examining the PC's features, I would think that Device Manager is similar to Disk Utility, but I do not see an "eject"/"unmount" option in there.

    I have Quick Removal set to on, so I can if I understand correctly, simply disconnect any drive anytime without fear of the drive getting corrupted. However, I see complaints in discussions that say that Quick Removal is not working as intended. I myself had to reformat a brand-new drive after just unplugging it without properly ejecting it (it just wouldn't eject).

    Is the maybe a Command Prompt solution for ejecting an external drive? Any other way?

    It is really important that I figure this out, before I get another new external drive. I don't want to find myself unable to eject the drive.

    :)
     
    battlezone, Feb 12, 2018
    #1
  2. Snafoo74 Win User

    Windows 10 cannot "Safe Eject" USB drive

    This isn't true. Sometimes I'm able to eject an external USB drive, and sometimes I can't. Your message implies that it can never eject an external drive.
     
    Snafoo74, Feb 12, 2018
    #2
  3. ejecting from USB port

    Hi Loretta,

    We appreciate you for being a part of Windows 10.

    Kindly be informed that it is not recommended to eject the external hard drive without clicking on eject box in Windows 10. If you eject the external hard drive while it is in use (such as transferring/using the data through the external hard drive),
    you may lose some data sometimes. So, it is better to click on Eject box and remove the external hard drive safely. For your information the eject box will appear on the bottom right side of the taskbar.

    I hope the above information helps. Kindly let us know if you need any further assistance with Windows. We are glad to assist you.

    Thank you.
     
    Kiran Kishore, Feb 12, 2018
    #3
  4. dalchina New Member

    How to force-eject an external drive?

    Hi, this can be a real annoyance- and can occur with some 3rd party programs and some windows services.

    I use a program called USB Safely Remove which can help and offers a force option after attempting ejection.

    Device Manager is primarily for managing device drivers.
     
    dalchina, Feb 12, 2018
    #4
  5. I will look into USB Safely Remove. Thanks for the suggestion.

    Can someone please elaborate on the usefulness of Quick Remove? As I mentioned, in my own experience it does not allow for safe unplugging of an external drive. I admit that the fault may have rather been with that particular external drive, since there seem to be several problems with it.
     
    battlezone, Feb 12, 2018
    #5
  6. dalchina New Member
  7. I downloaded and tried USb Safely Remove. That program completely disabled Windows's Safely Remove feature, which I couldn't get to launch until I had uninstalled USB Safely Remove.

    I was hoping that USB Safely Remove would at least show me the mystery program using the drive. Supposedly there was none:


    How to force-eject an external drive? [​IMG]


    I have tried USB Disc Ejector before and it too did not work for me.

    Does this mean I'm stuck with logging out of my user account and back in or shutting down the PC? as my only remaining options?
     
    battlezone, Feb 12, 2018
    #7
  8. dalchina New Member

    How to force-eject an external drive?

    USB Safely Remove usually lists programs stopping the ejection (image in URL below). In some cases these are windows processes, and occasionally forced eject does not work.

    I can't tell you what the problem is, I'm afraid.
    Make sure no file explorer windows are open accessing the device; could be some buffering.

    USB Safely Remove Features
    but it doesn't seem to cover that.

    I think you know about Quick Remove
    Quickly remove USB devices without using Safe Removal - CNET

    There is this option:

    How to force-eject an external drive? [​IMG]
     
    dalchina, Feb 12, 2018
    #8
  9. Bree New Member
    One process that you may not expect to prevent ejecting an external HDD is Task Manager. I often have to close it before I can eject an HDD.
     
  10. Again, Quick Remove does not seem to always work without creating problems with the drive. I would like to know more about this, though.

    File Explorer and Task Manager were definitely nor running when the drive failed to eject.

    I am unsure about Avast (free version). Does or does it not affect external drives? Is there a way to temporarily disable Avast altogether, or do I have to end Avast Service, Behavior Shield, and Anti-Virus individually via the Task Manager?

    On my Mac computers, Indexing always prevented me from ejecting drives. Mostly because Indexing takes hours. So I disabled Indexing for external drives and had no longer any problems, I checked the Indexing Options in Windows. The only options are Internet Explorer History, Start Menu, Users. There is no mention of indexing either the inbuilt drive or external drives.
     
    battlezone, Feb 13, 2018
    #10
  11. Kari Win User
    This is not a solution per se, just a workaround. Its usability depends on the boot / shut down times of your PC:

    On computers that boot up and shut down fast, I've noticed that it is often faster, easier and more nerve saving simply to shut down computer, disconnect the external drive in question, and restart.
     
  12. Berton Win User
    Me too. Most times it's with a USB Thumb/Flash drive. And don't discount an antivirus or antimalware program holding things up.

    On my MacBook Pro [which finally died] it usually worked to drag the drive icon from the desktop to the Trash basket.
     
    Berton, Feb 13, 2018
    #12
  13. EdTittel Win User

    How to force-eject an external drive?

    I'm *totally* with Kari and Berton on this topic, FWIW: when all else fails, there's no harm in disconnecting a device when the parent PC is shut down.
    --Ed--
     
    EdTittel, Feb 13, 2018
    #13
  14. Callender Win User
    For me: I set policies to "quick removal"

    Enable or Disable Disk Write Caching in Windows 10 | Windows 10 Tutorials

    Even then the drive(s) can sometimes be locked when manually ejecting. Disable those drives from being scanned by your AV (add to exclusions) and check any third party explorer extensions that add a right click context menu entry when right clicking on a drive in file explorer.

    Sometimes it's explorer locking the drive and one method I use is to reopen any folder on the drive that I was viewing then exit out of each window before attempting to eject. If all else fails - power off and wait a minute or so before manually unplugging the drive.
     
    Callender, Feb 13, 2018
    #14
  15. Like I said, I'd really like to know how to temporarily disable Avast. I do not see a one-button option for disabling Avast. If I set all Core Shields to "off," does that do it?

    And as far as Quick Removal goes, it sure did mess up one of my drives, which needed then to be reformatted. Had I had any data on that drive...
     
    battlezone, Feb 14, 2018
    #15
Thema:

How to force-eject an external drive?

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