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Why does my MacBook Pro fail to recognize my flash drive?

So I have never experienced this problem before. My flash drives always appeared on my desktop, then one afternoon, my usual flash drive was not showing up on my MacBook, so I assumed it was the flash drive and not my computer. Since that day, I haven't really used a flash drive for anything until today when I tried to save a few photographs on a different flash drive this time. I plugged in the flash drive in both usb ports and still nothing. I cannot find my flash drive anywhere! I checked all my system preferences and everything seems to be right so why am I still having this issue? I don't have a problem when i plug in my ipod or ipad, and I can't find my flash drive in Disk Utilities either.

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Ciki Liu

Ciki Liu

Answered on Monday, July 10, 2023


Possibly, it's a connection issue, which can be fixed by connecting the USB flash drive via a USB adapter to your Mac or plugging in the drive extremely slowly. It can also be a USB port issue which can be fixed by resetting the port. Moreover, there might be some hardware issues that need to be diagnosed. For more detailed fixes, check the following content.

Fix 1: Make sure the connection is proper and tight.

To your surprise, many Mac users fix external hard drive not showing up in Disk Utility by plugging in the device extremely slowly. Though it sounds confusing, you can give a try. Perhaps it's the slow plugging-in process that enhances the contact between your flash drive and your Mac. Meanwhile, using a USB adapter is also worth considering.

Fix 2: Reset the USB port on your Mac.

The problem can also lie in the USB port on your Mac device. Luckily, you can refresh it to help detect your USB flash drive.

  1. After restarting your Mac, hold down the Command, Option, P, and R keys together until the Apple logo appears.
  2. Hit the Command + Option + Esc keys to quit any unresponsive programs on Mac.
  3. Plug in the USB device not showing up on Mac. Click on the Apple icon and tap on Sleep.
  4. Wake up your Mac by tapping on anything on your keyboard.
  5. Turn off your Mac and reboot it after 15 seconds.

Fix 3: Run Apple diagnostics to check for hardware issues.

  1. Keep only the most essential hardware connections to your Mac, including the keyboard, mouse, etc.
  2. Restart or turn on your Mac. Hold down the D button on your keyboard until you are asked to select a language.
  3. A progress bar stating "checking your mac" will appear once you choose your language.
  4. Once the diagnostics are complete, it will recommend fixes for found errors.

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