7 Quick Ways| How to Fix USB Flash Drive Blinking Red

Why is my USB flash drive blinking red? Please find possible reasons and learn to fix a blinking red USB via 7 effective ways on this page. And you can recover data from your USB flash drive easily.


By Lori / Updated on April 2, 2024

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Are you noticing the issue of the flash drive blinking red? If that's the case, it indicates a serious problem. Even a single error in your USB drive can lead to the loss of all your stored data. So it's crucial to address the blinking red light on flash drives to prevent your USB data loss.

“I have a flash drive with data on it. After putting it into my computer, it is just blinking red. I checked the USB ports and all are fine and working. All the ports also are fine. Is my flash drive dead? If not, how do I fix a red blinking flash drive? Moreover, how can I get my data back? Thanks in advance.”

If you’re bothered by these issues, you’ve come to the right place because this article delves into potential causes and provides 7 practical fixes for this problem. Besides, you can safely and easily recover data from flash drives using professional USB data recovery software. Please read on.

Why Is My Flash Drive Blinking Red

What does it mean when a flash drive blinks red? Flash drives usually have indicator lights that blink, stay on, or change colors to convey different messages. The blinking red light usually indicates a successful data transmission or highlights an error within the drive's mechanism.

In this case, you might need to fix this error first, and then recover deleted files from flash drives.

So why is USB blinking? Here are 6 common reasons for the red blinking light on your flash drive.

🎑 Incorrect connection

πŸŽ‡ Virus or malware attacks

🎐 Outdated/corrupted USB device driver

πŸŽƒ Firmware issues

πŸŽ† Insufficient power

Part 1. How Do I Fix a Flashing USB Drive Blinking Red

Considering the previously mentioned causes, we've collected 7 practical solutions to address the "USB flash drive blinking red but not recognized" problem. Let's get started!

Fix 1. Check and Try Another USB Port

If you face the problem of the USB flash drive blinking red, it could be the USB Port of your system problem. First, check your USB connection. Unplug the USB drive and plug it back in. Alternatively, try using a different USB port. See if it starts working properly after doing so.


Fix 2. Remove Viruses or Malware

As we mentioned above, virus or malware attacks can be the cause of USB flash drives blinking red.

To address this, you can remove ransomware virus and resolve potential threats. Using virus & threat protection in Windows Security can help you scan for possible threats on your device.

Step 1. Press “Win + I” to openWindows Settings. Then click Update & Security>Windows Security>Virus & threat protection.


Step 2. On the Virus & threat protection screen, click the “Scan options” button.


Step 3. Select “Full scan” and click “Scan now” to begin the scanning process.


Fix 3. Check If There Is a Hidden Device

Sometimes, your Lexar flash drive blinking red might imply there is a hidden device. Device Manager is a component of the Microsoft Windows operating system. It allows users to view and control the hardware connected to the computer. At the moment, it can help you show hidden devices via the following steps.

Please ensure a good connection between the USB flash drive and your PC.

Step 1. Connect your USB flash drive to the computer. Then typeDevice Manager in the search box and open it.


Step 2. Click View Show hidden devices in the main interface.


Fix 4. Update USB Device Drivers

An outdated USB driver can cause the "USB flash drive blinking red but not recognized" problem. To fix this, update your driver to the latest version. Here's how:

Step 1. Connect your USB flash drive to the computer. Then type Device Manager in the search box and open it.


Step 2. Right-click on the USB flash drive you plugged in > Choose Update Driver.

External Hard Drive Update Driver

Step 3. Click Search automatically for drivers. Your computer will search the internet for the latest version of drivers and download/install them.

External Hard Drive Search Automatic For Driver

Fix 5. Turn on the USB Root Hub

If you have never activated or turned off USB Root Hub, it may also be the issue of your USB flash drive blinking red. If your USB is not recognized by a Windows computer, you can also turn on the USB Root Hub to solve it. So to turn on the USB Root Hub, follow the steps below. Windows computers will not recognize the USB drive you connect.

Step 1. Connect the USB flash drive to your computer. Then open Device Manager by entering it in the search bar.


Step 2.ExpandUniversal Serial Bus Controllers and right-click on your chosen USB Root Hub. Then click “Properties”.


Step 3. Under the Power Management tab, uncheck “Allow the computer to turn off this device to power” and click “OK” to save your change.


Fix 6. Modify the Registry

Modifying the registry can be a viable solution when dealing with the blinking red light on the flash drive problem. Follow the steps below to change the "CheckedValue" in the Regedit registry editor.

Step 1. Press Win + R to open the Run command. Type “Regedit” and click OK.

Regedit Ok

Step 2. Go to the following directory: Computer > HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SYSTEM > CurrentControlSet > Services > USBSTOR.

Step 3. On the right panel, look for "Start" and right-click on it. On the popup menu choose "Modify" > change the Value Data to "3". Click "OK". Then, try to connect your USB flash drive and see if the issue is resolved or not.


Fix 7. Format USB Flash Drive via AOMEI Partition Assistant

If none of the previous methods prove successful, the final solution is to reformat the flash drive. Typically, you can access Disk Management to format the drive. However, if you encounter an error like "the format did not complete successfully", consider using the free partition manager, AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard.

This free software is more robust than Windows native tools when it comes to formatting hard disks. To format the problematic flash drive, follow these steps.

⚠ Note: It's important to note that if there are essential files on the drive, please make file backups via AOMEI Backupper Standard before disk formatting. Because disk formatting will delete all the existing data on your USB.

Step 1. Download, install, and launch the freeware. Right-click the flash drive and select “Format Partition”.


Step 2. Choose a proper file system based on your needs, and click “OK”.


Step 3. Back to the main interface, click “Apply".

How to Recover Lost Data from Blinking USB Flash Drive

The above fixes are useful to fix the flash drive blinking red issue, but some users have reported their data might be lost after repair. Besides, some users have permanently deleted data before the USB flash drive blinking red, and want to recover deleted files after fixing this issue.

Do deleted files from USB go to Recycle Bin? Usually not, files deleted on the USB flash drive are deleted permanently instead of going to the desktop Recycle Bin.

In this case, we recommend you try this robust USB data recovery tool MyRecover to recover deleted files from USB flash drives. Its main features play an important role in making flash drive data recovery relatively easy for users. It also supports Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, and Windows Server.

Professional USB Recovery Software
  • Recover deleted/lost files from USB sticks, HDD, SSD, SD cards, and other local drives.
  • Support different brands of USB such as SanDisk, Kingston, Samsung, ADATA, Transcend, PNY, Lexar, etc.
  • Recover 200+ formats: It can recover deleted Microsoft Word, Excel, PPT, PDF, PPTX, JPG, PNG, MP3, MP4, MOV, CDA, 7Z, ZIP, MSG, EML, and more.
  • Advanced scanning method: MyRecover runs Quick Scan & Deep Scan automatically to search all the recoverable files and folders.

Get this file recovery tool and operate with the following tutorial to recover deleted/missing files from USB flash drives.

Step 1. Connect your  USB flash drive to the Windows. Download and run MyRecover on your PC. Hover the mouse over the USB flash drive. Then, click Scan.


Step 2. The software will scan your drive automatically to find the recoverable data. You can recover the files it detects right away or wait for the scan results.


Step 3. You will see a list of data that MyRecover has found. Go to the Other Missing Files folder, choose your desired files to recover, and click Recover x files.


Step 4. Choose a new location for the recovered data and click Select Folder to confirm. The data recovery process will take a few minutes or longer, depending on the amount of data you're recovering.

Select Location

🌟Tip: MyRecover offers 3 subscription plans: Monthly, Yearly, and Lifetime. Select the plan that suits your data recovery needs. Please upgrade to MyRecover Pro/Tech for unlimited file recovery options.


Why is my hard drive blinking red light?
The blinking red light on your hard drive indicates it's reading or writing data, signifying a smooth operation without any issues.
How can you tell if a flash drive is bad?
If your files are disappearing or you're receiving error messages like "USB Not Recognized or Malfunctioned," your USB drive might be faulty. While recovering files from a damaged USB flash drive is possible, it can be time-consuming.
Is it bad if my hard drive is red?
When your hard drive's storage exceeds 75%, the color could turn red, which indicates you need more storage space. You can check your drive's status by clicking on it, usually labeled as "drive C," and viewing the available space at the bottom of the window.
What is the lifespan of a flash drive?
The lifespan of a flash drive varies based on factors like connector type (USB-A vs. USB-C) and build quality. Most USB drives can endure between 10,000 and 100,000 cycles. Manufacturers often estimate a lifespan of around 10 years for their devices.

In the End

“What does it mean when a flash drive blinks red? Why is my flash drive blinking red? And how can I fix it?” Don’t worry when you are facing a flash drive blinking red issue. You can fix it through the 7 effective methods provided in this article.

Moreover, when your data is at risk after fixing, using powerful data recovery software like MyRecover will help you get out of danger.

For example, in this scenario, you can perform ADATA USB flash drive recovery or recover permanently deleted files from other brands of USB sticks.

Please remember that maintaining timely backups is crucial to minimizing data. Here, you could try this free backup software for Windows likeAOMEI Backupper to create regular file backups. Then, you can easily and quickly retrieve files from backup.

Lori Β· Editor
Lori receives professional technical training since joining AOMEI, and aims at helping users troubleshoot problems on data recovery and protection. She focuses on simple, efficient and practical methods, and provides professional advice. Being able to help readers and users is her ultimate goal.