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  1. #1
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    I am running Win 7 64-bit. When I open Windows Explorer, I have 4 removable disk drives that are named with the letters E,F,G, and H. I am not sure how these were derived when Win 7 was originally installed, but these drives will never physically exist. The new Dell machine that I have has one physical drive that handles all types of removable disks, CDs,DVDs, dual sided DVDs, etc. I would like to get rid of these "ghost" drives (my name for them) and recover the letter designations so they can be assigned, at some point to real physical drives such as backups, etc. I am not sure exactly how to do do this as I would not want to screw up something within the system itself if it thinks these drives are supposed to exist, for whatever reason. My own feeling is that these are something that maybe vestigial from my previous XP system, or they were just automatically assigned in anticipation that they would be there to be used by something, someday - don't know. The key is that at present they do nothing, nor do I have any indication that they will ever be used, or assigned to anything in the future. Every drive that gets added, e.g., memory sticks, backup hard drives, etc., always gets a letter assigned to it above these "ghost" drives.

    Any insight that anyone would care to provide as to how to get rid of these, or free them up some how, will be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

    Ron M

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    Gold Lounger Roderunner's Avatar
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    Ron M, these are for card readers that are on the front panel of your PC.
    O wad some Power the giftie gie us, to see oursels as ithers see us!

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    Do you have a builtin or add on card reader? If so, then that is what the additional drive assignments are for. If you don't use them or ever will there is a way to hide them or I think you can go into Disk Management (Computer>>Manage>>Storage>>Disk Management), right click on the removable disk and in change drive letters and paths, Remove.
    If it is a card reader though, then it would be inoperative so that doesn't make a lot of sense unless its just removed or unplugged instead.

    Let us know if its not some sort of card reader and someone else can take a crack at it.

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Many newer printers and scanners have a built in card readers that will show up as "removable" drives when these parent devices
    are connected to your computer. I know my HPOJ h470 does. check the specs on your peripherals.
    DRIVE IMAGING
    Invest a little time and energy in a well thought out BACKUP regimen and you will have minimal down time, and headache.

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    5 Star Lounger RussB's Avatar
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    They are likely there for a multipurpose card reader, either on the computer or an installed printer.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Roderunner View Post
    Ron M, these are for card readers that are on the front panel of your PC.
    There is only one card reader on the front of my PC and there never will be another one, to my knowledge, at least, not that I will put there - there is no room.. Currently, anything that is inserted into that existing reader goes to the D drive - doesn't matter if it is a CD, DVD, readable, writable, multisided or whatever, it all comes under the D drive whenever anything is inserted into the one existing drive. This is why I do not see any use for the E,F, G or H drives and wonder how and why they came to be. I have never seen them used by anything for anything.

    If I don't need them and will never use them, how do I release them so they can be used by other drives, e.g., backup HDs, new HDs, etc. These "new" drives would ultimately be plugged into a USB port and run from there, but they still need a drive designation. Hopefully this clears up some things from my previous post.

    Ron M

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    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    Try USBDview downlaodable from here:
    http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/usb_devices_view.html

    "USBDeview also allows you to uninstall USB devices that you previously used, disconnect USB devices that are currently connected to your computer, as well as to disable and enable USB devices. "

    Jerry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron M View Post
    There is only one card reader on the front of my PC and there never will be another one, to my knowledge, at least, not that I will put there - there is no room.. Currently, anything that is inserted into that existing reader goes to the D drive - doesn't matter if it is a CD, DVD, readable, writable, multisided or whatever, it all comes under the D drive whenever anything is inserted into the one existing drive.
    It still seems that you're confusing your optical drive (the D drive) with what might be a card reader. Card readers read SD cards and the like. If you do have a card reader, it might not be on the front as has been suggested - it could be on the side or at the back instead. You might also have to remove a small plastic insert to access the reader (I've seen Dell netbooks with those). If you confirm what type of Dell you've got it should be possible to check its drives via the Dell website.

    Incidentally, some monitors also have built-in card readers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jerry Witalka View Post
    Try USBDview downlaodable from here:
    http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/usb_devices_view.html

    "USBDeview also allows you to uninstall USB devices that you previously used, disconnect USB devices that are currently connected to your computer, as well as to disable and enable USB devices. "

    Jerry
    Jerry, sorry, but they are not really devices at all, let alone USB devices, that's the problem.. They are just names (letters) for devices that appear in a list in Windows Explorer and bear no relation to anything that is attached to my Dell Inspiron. The D drive, an optical drive, covers everything optical as I have already outlined. What happens when I attach a USB device, is that the new USB device is labelled with a letter above H, e.g. J, K, L, etc. THe letters E, F, G, and H are never used for anything and yet they show up in the list of devices in Windows Explorer as "removable disks" and they really are not. Make sense?

    Ron M

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    check out the following link to see what we are talking about when we talk about a card reader:

    http://accessories.us.dell.com/sna/p...530&lid=627063

    If you have a set of slots like that on your computer or on your printer, you will find that EACH of those slots are assigned a drive letter. As has been stated you can remove those letters using drive management but it will disable the slots in the device......

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    Quote Originally Posted by William View Post
    It still seems that you're confusing your optical drive (the D drive) with what might be a card reader. Card readers read SD cards and the like. If you do have a card reader, it might not be on the front as has been suggested - it could be on the side or at the back instead. You might also have to remove a small plastic insert to access the reader (I've seen Dell netbooks with those). If you confirm what type of Dell you've got it should be possible to check its drives via the Dell website.

    Incidentally, some monitors also have built-in card readers.
    Not really. The term "Card reader" was introduced by RodeRunner. I do know what a card reader is, I have one attached, via a USB port, and I suspect RodeRunner maybe right. When I stick a CF card into this reader it shows up on drive E, so maybe F, G, and H are also meant to deal with card readers, or other things, and not optical drives as they did on my old XP system (last computer before this one), however, there are only two USB ports on the front of my computer and I only use one of them for a card reader. Maybe I now have my answer??? Maybe the F, G, and H letters relate to some of the unused ports on the back of my desktop - I will have to investigate that. I will pull out the install diagrams and check this out.

    William, FYI, (you asked) I have a Dell Inspiron 545 desktop with upgraded dual processors, Nvidia graphics card, 1Tb hard drive, 6 Mbs of memory and a bunch of other attachments - extra monitor, colour calibration unit, two printers, floppy disk drive (shows up as an A drive), Palm remote interface (doesn't show as anything lettered), graphics tablet (doesn't show as anything lettered), the usual sound system attached to the back of the 545, keyboard, mouse (as part of the tablet), high-speed internet, clickfree backup (uses letters I and J), and then I use various memory sticks which each get their own letter when attached - K, L, M, N, etc. Hope this helps??

    Ron M

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    If your card reader handles multiple types of cards you probably have a drive letter assigned to each type.

    Joe
    Joe

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    Ron,

    that card reader will probably have a letter assigned to each slot even if you have no cards in it. A usb port on the other hand will not have a drive letter assigned as it can be used for things other than drives.

    Try this experiment, unplug the card reader and see if the extra drives go away......

  14. #14
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    Just a couple of comments on card readers ....
    On one of my my Dell Dimension systems - Win XP Pro SP3
    I have a USB Kingston multi-card multi-slot(3) card reader which only gets assigned one drive letter (N
    I also have an HP C6180 printer with a multi-card multi-slot(4) card reader which only gets assigned one driver letter (K

    I don't think drive letter assignments are always made by number of slots on the card reader.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ron M View Post
    ......
    I have a Dell Inspiron 545 desktop with upgraded dual processors, Nvidia graphics card, 1Tb hard drive, 6 Mbs of memory and a bunch of other attachments - extra monitor, colour calibration unit, two printers, floppy disk drive (shows up as an A drive), Palm remote interface (doesn't show as anything lettered), graphics tablet (doesn't show as anything lettered), the usual sound system attached to the back of the 545, keyboard, mouse (as part of the tablet), high-speed internet, clickfree backup (uses letters I and J), and then I use various memory sticks which each get their own letter when attached - K, L, M, N, etc. Hope this helps??

    Ron M
    Ron -
    You have two monitors - Does either have a built in card reader?
    You have two printers - Does either have a built in card reader?
    Does Palm have a card reader?
    Any of your other peripherals have a card reader?
    How many USB ports are being used on the back of the system?

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