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Windows 7: How to mount multiple partitions on a USB removable drive?

05 Oct 2014   #1
Brian J Hoskins

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 
How to mount multiple partitions on a USB removable drive?

Hi all,

I have a USB flash drive on which I have created two partitions. Due to the way that Windows deals with removable drives, it ignores all but the primary partition on the drive. Therefore it is not possible to mount any of the other partitions using standard Windows software.

On Linux it is possible to mount all of the drive's partitions because it treats removable drives the same way as fixed drives.

I have done a fair bit of research to see if I can find some software for Windows that would allow me to bypass the standard Windows behaviour and mount the extra partitions on the drive. Unfortunately I've not been able to find anything. I did find some information about a Lexar format tool which allows you to flip the RMB bit on a flash drive so that it enumerates itself as a fixed drive instead; solving the problem. Unfortunately this tool doesn't work with all USB flash drives, and it doesn't work with mine.

Has anyone here solved this for themselves? If so can you share your solution?

Thanks!

Brian


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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05 Oct 2014   #2
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

I have done that on this flash drive - see picture


Attached Thumbnails
How to mount multiple partitions on a USB removable drive?-2014-10-05_1742.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2014   #3
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

@whs

SanDisk pen drives manufactured between June 2012 and Dec 2013 or about were configured as Fixed Disks, to meet new requirements for Windows 8 Certification.

You had done it on a San Disk pen drive that was manufactured during this time.

This was discussed in a July 2014 post here Partition USB Pen Drive

You can't do it on a SanDisk pendrive manufactured after Dec 2013 or any other brand pendrive/s which are configured as removable disks.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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05 Oct 2014   #4
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

I know. I have seen that earlier. But at least on this flash drive it works.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
05 Oct 2014   #5
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

That doesn't help the OP in anyway . "I have a Rolls Royce."

To me it appears that the only way the OP can mount any partition in a multipartitioned Pendrive on Windows is to hide all other partitions preceding it, so that Windows will see it as the first partition. He may have to use a third party software to hide the preceding partitions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2014   #6
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

My point is that you need a special flash drive for multiple partitions. At least with that one it is possible. It does not help either to tell him that it is impossible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2014   #7
jumanji

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 bit
 
 

The fact is no such special flash drive is available.If available please tell the OP where to get it. His problem will be solved.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2014   #8
Brian J Hoskins

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

Thank you both for your replies.

The use of a particular make/model flash drive does not help me right now, as I have already purchased a 128GB drive for use in my application. Still, it is useful to be aware of this in case I am making a future purchase.

Regarding the "it's impossible" response, no this doesn't help me solve my problem but it does help me stop wasting my time on it ;-)

If anyone else has something useful to add please do share.

Thanks,

Brian
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Oct 2014   #9
Brian J Hoskins

Windows 7 Professional x64
 
 

For reference:

I did find some instructions here which claim to solve the problem for 32-bit Windows users only.

Brian
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 How to mount multiple partitions on a USB removable drive?




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