Unhide USB Files Using Windows, CMD and Software

Files can become hidden on a memory storage device for a variety of reasons. On this page, you can learn how to show or recover hidden files on virus-infected USB flash drives, hard drives, memory cards, pen drives using Control Panel, CMD and EaseUS data recovery software.

Table of Contents

Nowadays, more and more people store their personal data on USB flash drives, pen drives, memory cards, and other external hard disks. But sometimes, these files can go missing after a system update, program installation, virus attack, and other unknown reasons. You didn't delete them or format the disk ever. In this case, when USB files & folders are invisible on the correct spot, how to show hidden files in USB? Here on this page, you can learn how to unhide files and folders in USB using three methods, including Windows, CMD and third-party USB drive recovery software.

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Solution 1. Use Control Panel Connect device to PC > Open Control Panel > "Appearance and personalization" > "Show hidden..."...Full steps
Solution 2. Use Command Prompt Open Command Prompt as Administrator > Enter attrib -h -r -s /s /d G:\*-* (G for device drive letter)...Full steps
Solution 3. Use Recovery Software Connect USB/SD to PC > Run EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard > Scan and restore hidden files...Full steps

How to Show Hidden Files and Folders in a USB Pen Drive

The hidden files and folders for a USB drive is defined as a group of files that take up disk space but not showing up normally. Those files can be set to be hidden in Windows by default, or perhaps unknowingly hidden by the virus. If you lost some important documents, pictures or videos without manual deletion, it's likely that they're hidden somewhere, and you need to take appropriate measures to unhide files from the portable device as soon as possible.

Many people have had a similar experience and may have felt helpless to see that all of their files have vanished. Before introducing hidden file recovery solutions that allow you to view, check and show hidden files on various types of USB drives, we would first like to talk about how the files can go missing in the first place. Often if your USB drive, memory SD card, or other storage device shows no data, it might have been infected with a virus or malware. Malware can sometimes mark the files on your device as hidden so that you cannot see them when you open the device. 

Fortunately, it is possible for you to recover virus-infected files from USB drives, hard drives, or memory cards. Here you can read on to learn how to fix a blank SD card and show hidden files on a memory card or USB drive in three possible ways.

Solution 1.  Show Hidden Files in USB in Windows File Option

Step 1. In Windows 10/8/7, press Windows + E to bring up the Windows Explorer.

Step 2. In the Folder Options or File Explorer Options window, click View tab, under Hidden files and folders, click Show hidden files, folders, and drives option.

how to show hidden files in usb in windows file explorer options

Step 3. Then click Apply, then OK. You'll see the files of the USB drive.

Solution 2. Show Hidden Files in USB Using CMD

Command Prompt (CMD) is the second choice when you want to show hidden files from external hard disk, USB drive, memory card, or other storage devices. Next, you will learn the full attrib command for hidden files.

To unhide files using  CMD, follow the three steps:

Step 1. Properly connect the USB drive to your computer.

Step 2. Press Windows + X keys to bring up a dialogue and click Command Prompt (Admin)

open command prompt admin

Step 3. Enter attrib -h -r -s /s /d G:\*.* (replace G: with the drive letter for your device).

Finish these steps and then you can go to your USB flash drive, hard drive, or memory card to check if you can see all of the hidden files.

If you don't have any technical know-how and want to minimize data risks, using third-party software could be a better choice. The Command line is suitable for computer professionals since wrong commands can cause severe problems. Therefore, we strongly recommend you try an automatic command line alternative.

EaseUS Tools M is a practical computer fixing tool that is safe and light-weighted. It's a perfect alternative to CHKDSK command. Use this one-click tool to solve your computer issues.

To fix file system error or disk error:

Step 1: DOWNLOAD EaseUS Tools M for Free and install it.

Step 2: Open the software and select the "File showing" option. 

Step 3: Choose the drive and wait for repairing. After the operation completes, click the "View" button to check the drive. 

select the drive and check off file system error

If you can't find the files you want, you can try another solution: recover hidden files on USB flash drive and memory card with EaseUS data recovery software.

Solution 3. Recover Hidden Files in USB Using Software

In case neither of the Control Panel and CMD help show the hidden files, EaseUS file recovery software becomes a nice alternative solution. The program is professional recovery software that can help you recover hidden files from pen drive, hard drives and multiple storage devices such as USB flash drives, memory cards, external hard drives, etc.

By performing the 3-step hidden file recovery, you'll see hidden files showing up again.

Step 1. Select a location to scan.

Launch EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard, hover on the partition, external hard drive, USB, or memory card on which you want to show hidden files, and then click "Scan".

select a location and click scan

Step 2. Select the hidden files.

Wait until the scanning completes. Afterward, select the hidden files. If you need, double-click the file to preview its content.

Choose files to recover

Step 3. Show hidden files.

After choosing the files, click "Recover" and choose a location on another drive to save the recovered files. By doing so, you can make the hidden files show up again.

Recover lost data

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Updated by Daisy

Daisy is the Senior editor of the writing team for EaseUS. She has been working in EaseUS for over ten years, starting from a technical writer to a team leader of the content group. As a professional author for over 10 years, she writes a lot to help people overcome their tech troubles.

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Written by Roxanne

Roxanne is one of the main contributors to EaseUS and has created multiple posts on digital devices like PCs, Mobile phones, tablets, Mac, etc. She loves to share ideas with people of the same interest.

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