How to solve USB drive’s files and folders that change to shortcuts

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files changed to shortcuts How to solve USB drive’s files and folders that change to shortcutsHas anyone encounter problem with missing files and folder on their hard drives, pen drives or other external storage devices? If you have recently found out that your external storage devices show only shortcuts(.ink) rather than actual files and folders, you may be a victim of malwares or viruses. However, do not panic and try to format the whole storage drives if you intend to recover all important files and documents.
The original files and folders in the external storage devices may most probably be there but are being hidden by malwares. Although, we can try to unhide all hidden files using the usual folder options in Windows. (Tools>Folder options: Under View Tabs – Check the show hidden files and folders). This troubleshooting method will not always solve the problem as the malwares or viruses have disabled these functions in the specified drive.
A simple solution to view your files and folders again back on your external storage device is by simply entering the following code below for your USB external drive in Comand Prompt (CMD).

Follow the 3 simple steps below:

Check the drive letter for your external USB storage device. We used F: drive for this example.

STEP 1: Type “cmd” in the Run (Windows 95,98 & XP) or Search box (Windows Vista,7)
STEP2: In the command prompt, key in: “attrib –h –r –s /s /d f:*.*

(Key in without the quotes and replace with the drive letter for your case)
STEP3: Open your USB external storage drive and check if all the existing files appear.

You should be able to retrieve all your original files and folders. You may want to consider performing a virus/malware scan and delete the unused shortcuts created by virus*(Pls make sure it is a shortcut though)

Brief explanation of the code

It clears the hidden, ready only, and system file attributes for all file types in the folders and subfolders for your external storage device.Hopefully, this method can help and solve problems people encountered in their daily operation and  tasks of computer usage.


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