How to Resolve the Problem Ejecting USB Mass Storage Device

The Problem associated with ejecting USB mass storage device on windows OS computers normally occur when you click the “Safely remove the hardware” icon at the right bottom corner of your PC screen. You will normally receive an error message that states that the hardware removal is unsuccessful or let’s put it straightforward- the device “Generic volume” cannot be stopped right now, Try stopping the device later.  This problem normally occurs when there are open handles associated with one or more of the files located in the USB mass storage device , especially when the device is being used by another program.

Problem Ejecting USB

For a quick resolution of this problem, you can follow these simple Ejecting USB procedures:

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 1:[/highlight]   Quickly download free utility software from a third party website like

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 2:[/highlight] Select and Click “Find”. Search and locate the handle for DLL in the tool menu and click on the “Search Button”.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 3:[/highlight] In the box that appears now, find the process alongside its PID and a process tree view will appear. Find the process solution according to the “Find Handle” you locate earlier on.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 4:[/highlight] Press “Ctrl + H” to show up the handles on your lower pane view.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 5:[/highlight] Accordingly with the drive letter, search for the files interrupting with your USB mass storage device, right click on this file and choose “Close handle”.

The problem should be resolved once you have detected the file and its handle. You can simply eject the USB mass storage device again.

Un-locker is a third party software you can download and it can help you resolve the problem with ejecting USB mass storage device.

The inability of your USB mass storage device to eject may also be due to interruption from some other programs on your Computer. You will find an error that states “The device is currently in use, close all programs or windows that might be using the device, and try ejecting again”.

In case you close all Programs/windows using  or running from mass USB storage device and the problem still persists  you should try a  re-start. Even if this doesn’t help, Download the process explorer, from a third party app provider like, and then follow the simple steps already listed in the first section.

Alternatively, you can also resolve the issue by employing the instruction listed in the  following steps:

Check the task manager, and see the programs using your USB storage device, close all the programs and try removing the USB storage device again.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 1:[/highlight] Open task manager by using “Control + Alt + Delete”

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 2:[/highlight] Select and click on the process tab  from the  task manager.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 3:[/highlight] Check the lists of the processes and if you locate any process belonging to the device, simply click and end all the processes.

[highlight color=”eg. yellow, black”]Step 4:[/highlight]Remove the USB mass storage device again. It should eject successfully after this procedure.

Remove USB Device

It is very important that you are already prepared to stop using a USB mass storage device before you stop and eject it , otherwise, you will lose whatever you are doing when you carry out these problem fixing steps. You need to have closed all your web browsers, especially those in connection with your USB mass storage device and then try to close down all other programs associated with the device usage by using the procedures highlighted above, you can then eject safely.

Sometimes it is ideal to format your USB mass storage device even before usage; this will reduce incidences of USB ejection error.. Formatting a USB drive is similar to formatting any other device on the computer and the optimal setting for formatting will naturally depend on the hardware in question.

Formatting USB mass storage device in Windows Operating systems

Formatting USB mass storage device takes the same procedures on all Windows Platforms {XP, Professional, Windows 7 and Vista}.  Simply connect the USB drive and go to “My computer”. From my computer, select and right click on the drive. (Your USB drive should be inserted before you start the formatting procedure). Right-click on the drive and select “ Format” from the menu displayed on your screen- check the images below for details;

Formatting Mass Storage


You will be presented with different formatting systems, these are; File system , allocation unit size, Volume label, and Format options. To format your USB drive, simply choose one of the formatting systems and click “Start”, and click “OK” , your formatting will start immediately which will delete all the files and programs on the USB mass storage and any problems associated with it too. So, before you start formatting, you might want to copy essential files from the USB storage system onto your Computer.


Format USB


1 Comment

  1. I think the answer lies in a corrupted user account. Have Win10 Home, I’m the administrator. Noticed some weird behaviors, lost some items in right click content menu on the desktop and this USB removal from the taskbar/unplug (can eject from file explorer though).

    I ran sfc \scannow and DISM and found no corruption or missing files.

    So I created a new user account. Fairly bare bones, haven’t tweaked any major settings. But I can remove a USB device from the taskbar/unplug icon and all the items missing in the right click desktop content menu are there.

    Probably in the registry but where and how to fix are beyond me.

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