Disable USB Drives Or Enable Flash Read-Only Mode To Avoid Malware In Windows

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USB Flash Drives have become a common storage medium for data transfers. They are smaller in size than portable hard drives, which makes them easier to carry around, while their maximum storage capacity is continuously on the rise. As much as these thumb drives have eased our lives, they can be equally dreadful if they get infected with malware. An infected thumb drive that is frequently plugged into different PCs increases the risk of spreading malicious content in multiple devices. Sadly, Windows doesn’t provide a feasible solution to temporarily prevent anyone from plugging USB flash drives into your computer, which is why third-party tools like Phrozen Safe USB exist, which allow you to enable or disable USB flash drive recognition with a single click. Today, we have another similar utility labeled USB Flash Drives Control. As the name implies, it lets you control a few different parameters of the drives, allowing you to enable read-only mode or disable running EXE files from within a drive. You can also password protect the application itself to prevent unauthorized usage, a feature that Phrozen USB lacks.

The application runs from the system tray and can be controlled via the right-click context menu. Upon initial launch, you will see that the USB Flash Drive is enabled by default. If you select Deny Execute Mode, Windows won’t allow you to run EXE files from the drive. Likewise, enabling Read Only Mode prevents anyone from writing any file onto the connected drive, but they don’t lose read permission. If you want the drives to become completely unidentifiable by the system, simply select the Disable USB Flash Drive option.

USB Flash Drives Control_System Tray Menu

The Lock Application option lets you lock all the application settings with a password. When you click Lock Application, an input password panel pops up near the notification area. Here, you can specify the password and hit the Lock button. It should be noted that the application requests the same password during instances of unlocking the settings.

USB Flash Drives Control_Password

Overall, USB Flash Drives Control is a handsome utility to instantly enable or disable thumb drives. However, during testing we encountered a few issues, such as a USB port remained disabled even after re-enabling it from the settings. On the flip side of the coin, the applied settings still work even after exiting the app. The tool works on Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8.

Download USB Flash Drives Control

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  • This actually could be a great feature to protect my laptop while I walk away from it. I hope it disables power to the USB ports, this would prevent someone from running a USB based exploit.

  • ShahrezRafiq

    I was actually looking for some app which would do that for me, or at the very least let me know if there was an exe in the root of flash drive.
    Awesome post guys!

  • Merceri

    Just Majestic =). Thank You Addictivetipes !