Windows Vista Forums

Hard Drive is Write Protected?

  1. #1


    DRT Guest

    Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I have Vista installed here and one of my regular internal ATA
    drives has become write protected.

    When I try to do anything that involves a write, Vista brings up a
    message saying, "The media is write protected". This is normally
    something you get when working with removable media. How can an
    internal HDD be write protected?

    I'm sure its *not* a permissions problem. I have Administrator
    access and own the files. I try to even up the files up to Everyone
    but get the write protected message. I can't even rename a file or
    directory.

    Can someone explain how to undo this? There is no checkbox anywhere
    when viewing a drive that indicates "write protected" as far as I
    can tell. Please help! Thanks!

    --


      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2.   


  3. #2


    DX Guest

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    Hi DRT,

    Do you get any errors during boot up ?

    What are you exactly doing before the message appears ?

    Have you ran a full disk check on the drive ?

    Are there any errors in the event log indicating a disk problem ?


    "DRT" <DRT@nospam.net> wrote in message
    news:lvodi.20592$475.8609@fe76.usenetserver.com...
    >I have Vista installed here and one of my regular internal ATA drives has
    >become write protected.
    >
    > When I try to do anything that involves a write, Vista brings up a message
    > saying, "The media is write protected". This is normally something you
    > get when working with removable media. How can an internal HDD be write
    > protected?
    >
    > I'm sure its *not* a permissions problem. I have Administrator access and
    > own the files. I try to even up the files up to Everyone but get the
    > write protected message. I can't even rename a file or directory.
    >
    > Can someone explain how to undo this? There is no checkbox anywhere when
    > viewing a drive that indicates "write protected" as far as I can tell.
    > Please help! Thanks!
    >
    > --
    >



      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #3


    Michael Walraven Guest

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    Some motherboards permit write protecting a hard disk in the BIOS.


    "DRT" <DRT@nospam.net> wrote in message
    news:lvodi.20592$475.8609@fe76.usenetserver.com...
    >I have Vista installed here and one of my regular internal ATA drives has
    >become write protected.
    >
    > When I try to do anything that involves a write, Vista brings up a message
    > saying, "The media is write protected". This is normally something you
    > get when working with removable media. How can an internal HDD be write
    > protected?
    >
    > I'm sure its *not* a permissions problem. I have Administrator access and
    > own the files. I try to even up the files up to Everyone but get the
    > write protected message. I can't even rename a file or directory.
    >
    > Can someone explain how to undo this? There is no checkbox anywhere when
    > viewing a drive that indicates "write protected" as far as I can tell.
    > Please help! Thanks!
    >
    > --
    >


      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #4



    Newbie
    Join Date : Jan 2008
    South Florida
    Posts : 3
    Vista Business x64
    Local Time: 06:45 PM
    usa us florida

     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I had a similar problem and just found how to check, and hopefully correct the problem. The program diskpart.exe is part of Vista and provides a means of checking to see if a disk is marked read only and to change the flag if it is. Full documentation is in Microsoft Help & Support at

    Here's the procedure for checking the disk status.
    1. Open cmd window running as administrator
    2. Run diskpart.exe
    3. At the "DISKPART>" prompt enter the following commands. Text from // onwards is a descriptive comment
    4. >list volume //shows volumes and drive letters
    5. >select volume n //set focus on desired volume number n from list
    6. >detail volume //gives detailed attribute list for selected volume

    Here's the listing I get for my D-drive. (Note that extra spaces have been removed by the forum display.)
    DISKPART> detail volume

    Disk ### Status Size Free Dyn Gpt
    -------- ---------- ------- ------- --- ---
    * Disk 0 Online 190 GB 5812 KB

    Read-only : No
    Hidden : No
    No Default Drive Letter: No
    Shadow Copy : No
    Dismounted : No
    BitLocker Encrypted : No

    Volume Capacity : 95 GB
    Volume Free Space : 72 GB


    Hope this helps.

    -- roy --

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #5



    Newbie
    Join Date : Jan 2009
    Posts : 1
    Vista Ultimate x64
    Local Time: 06:45 PM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I know this is an older post, but it helped me today (1/7/09).

    After upgrading my computer with a new mobo, cpu, and memory, I installed Vista Ultimate x64. Once I had everything installed back the way I wanted, I started to try and download some updated drivers and such. I kept getting errors, and finally tried to paste a file to my "d" drive and got the write protected error.

    I followed the instructions in the posts above mine and opened a command prompt as "administrator" and then used the diskpart command. I viewed the volume and it wasn't marked read-only or anything like that. Just in case, I ran the command to remove the read-only attributes and received a "successful" message. I went to the drive and was immediately able to write to it afterwards. Very strange.

    Thanks to the posters for steering me in the right direction.
    Dave

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  7. #6



    Newbie
    Join Date : Feb 2009
    Posts : 1
    Vista Ulitmate x64
    Local Time: 12:45 AM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    Thanks for a good post. I just ran into the same problem with a write protected disc on a Vista x64 Ultimate.
    Diskpart fixed it with this command

    To clear the read-only attribute for the selected disk, type:
    ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  8. #7



    Newbie
    Join Date : Apr 2009
    Posts : 2
    Vista Ultimate x64 & x32
    Local Time: 06:45 PM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I wonder if this will work on my 2008 R2 x64 Server as well? The drive with my hyper-v machines and hard disks became write protected also. Funny thing is it's a partition behind the system disk. 500GB drive, 75gb to C: and ~400gb to H:

    I went as far as to scrap my lab environment, remove the partition and create a new blank one. Didn't take but twenty minutes to send it back to a write protected mode. It did freeze right before it happened, I let it sit for 10 minutes then manually rebooted it. Partition was back to write protected on next reboot. Is this a preservation technique or a failsafe of some sort?

    mac

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  9. #8


    Join Date : Jun 2009
    Posts : 3
    Ultimate x64
    Local Time: 12:45 AM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I had been getting a number of messages stating "The media is write protected" for a hard-drive that is connected to the GIGABYTE SATA2 controller on the GA-P35C-DS3R. The storage setup was as follows:

    Controller 1: GIGABYTE SATA2 controller (BIOS set to IDE mode, GIGABYTE drivers)
    C: 250GB WD SATA hdd (system)
    D: PATA DVD
    E: PATA DVD
    F: 250GB WD SATA hdd <---- affected drive

    Controller 2: Intel ICH9R (BIOS set to IDE mode, Microsoft generic IDE drivers)
    G: 250GB Maxtor SATA hdd
    H: 250GB Maxtor SATA hdd
    I: 250GB Maxtor SATA hdd
    J: 250GB Maxtor SATA hdd


    The issue had been intermittent but appeared to occur quite often while attempting to do a backup using shadow copying while also reading and writing files to the same disk. Rebooting the machine always cured the issue, but it would later remanifest.

    Some searching led me to the diskpart answer but Diskpart showed no "readonly" status. I also found the suggestion that folders had been marked as read-only, but while the folders on the drive did have the grey tick in the readonly box, this was not a black tick and so did not suggest that the folders themselves were readonly (besides, they are files no "media").



    =============================
    THE ANSWER:

    In Device Manager, under Storage Controllers, I right-clicked, Update Driver Software, clicked on the Browse, the List option, and chose the "Standard Dual Channel PCI IDE Controller".

    =============================



    So far, several reboots, backups and file operations later and the issue has not recurred.


    Interestingly, this issue follows on from a total failure of the 4 disk RAID 0 array I had on the Intel ICH9R 6 port SATA controller in the same machine. This had been running fine for several months, and then resulted in the crippling of the machine. The computer posted fine, but got to the RAID BIOS screen and hung, and did so until 2 of the drives from the RAID array were removed. If the BIOS was re-entered and the RAID turned off in favour of "IDE mode" those 2 drives could be placed back into the machine and windows could boot, after which point the 2 drives could be reinitialised. However, although the RAID array could be rebuilt in BIOS, on the next reboot the enter machine was crippled again in the same way. Updating the BIOS to the latest version did not resolve this, but reinstalling windows completely fixed the issue - that is until a certain number of windows updates had been applied.

    On this basis, I wonder if a recent windows update has created an issue for some storage controller drivers.


    Are other people getting "media is write protected" messages have manufacturer specific storage controller drivers installed?

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  10. #9


    Join Date : Aug 2009
    Posts : 2
    vista ultimate x64
    Local Time: 06:45 PM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    I have gone so far as to submit a technical suport request to Micrsoft. They respond with the chkdisk, diskpart (volume's readonly is clear) experiments to which I have already attempted. Tried attrib as well. Every folder on every volume returns with the Read-only block filled in (not check boxed) in Windows Explorer. It is consistendly broke, regardless of disk installed, connected etc. Came about all at once and will not go away... It has rendered the computer somewhat unusable for programs which honor this in temp files, etc.

    I have replaced the Intel ICH9 motherboard with a Nvida XFX, removed the RAID and installed a fresh copy of x64 on a single drive, removed everything except the ram and CPU and still the problem persists (I think the new BR-DRV was plugged in on the install both times.)

    It did surface immedately after performing the following (wish now I had done these one at a time...)

    1) Installed Pioneer BR-DVD
    2) Installed Frunhauffer mp3 encoder patch for cubase
    3) Ran windows update

    Suspecting it may be some interaction with the video display (even so far as a virus in the video bios), I pulled that board and booted up with a USB video. Same thing. All volumes are readonly. Applying a non read only has no effect. Of course I have tried with the BR-DVD unplugged along with the other DVD.

    Administrator account owns the files. Not set read only according to diskpart. Pretty much everything unplugged at one time or another. Re-installed windows. Reverted to an April (4 months ago) complete PC restore after re-formatting the RAID.

    Nothing worked. Microsoft has no clue as to the problem, and says its a conflict with 3rd party drivers. Im really stumped, because if the full PC restore is done, all the drivers are reverted. To what I can tell, all of the hardware except the RAM and CPU and keyboard have been replaced.

    Vista Ultimate used to be 32 bit but with all the install I decided to go x64.

    Just adding to the random variables here. Id even blast windows 2008 on here but since its a parallel project with Vista suspect that wont help much. Really stumped on this one.

    In case drivers are the issue:
    Category Storage Controlelrs
    1) FVDSCSI (2003) SCSI Host Adapter
    2) Intel(R) RAID Controller SRCSAS144E
    3) Microsoft iSCSI Initiator

    Next step ... Im getting a Mac or going Linux or upgrading to Windows XP this is about it for Vista being usable. Many applications do not like their temp volume being stuck read-only. Microsoft really needs to add a command line utility to tell what decision point or rule has made a volume/folder read-only. I see quite a number of posts about the net regarding this problem.

    Note: Windows live onecare is installed for antivirus. Did try other free scanners just in case...

    Last edited by Frank J Kime Jr; 09 Aug 2009 at 05:38 PM.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  11. #10


    Join Date : Jun 2009
    Posts : 3
    Ultimate x64
    Local Time: 12:45 AM


     

    Re: Hard Drive is Write Protected?

    Hi Frank,

    It seems that there are a number of potential read-only features. To name a few:

    1. NTFS permission for the file only allows read access
    2. Share permission only allows read access
    3. File attribute is read-only
    4. Volume attribute is read-only
    5. Media is write protected

    Read-only tickboxes for folders
    Now, you say that you have installed Windows Vista x64 onto a single disk, and then started windows. I note that you specifically state that the "Read-only block [is] filled in (not check boxed)", and I have to admit that I am not entirely sure what you mean by that.

    Do you mean that in Windows Explorer, for a folder, the Properties | General tab has a Read-only checkbox in the Attributes section and that checkbox has a grey tick in it? Although thinking about it, if you are using the default windows vista theme rather than the Windows Classic theme, I think this appears as a coloured square rather than a tick.
    If so, it may be worth noting that these "read-only" check boxes on folders are often shown with a greyed out tick (or other indicator depending on the theme). As far as I can tell, such ticks indicate nothing except that the folder is not considered to have a read-only attribute.
    If you set the read-only checkbox to a a black tick and click Apply this means all files will appear as read-only within the folder, while setting it to no tick and clicking Apply sets all the files to be not read-only. However, in either case, upon reopening the Properties | General of the folder, a grey tick (or whatever) will again be shown in the read-only field. I guess that the way to look at this is that the "read-only" referred to on the dialogue is a file attribute rather than a "folder" attribute (and we will ignore the fact that folders are files in a particular format).

    Diskpart and Volumes
    You refer to a read-only temp volume, but I suspect you are actually referring to the folder defined by the %TEMP% evironment variable, rather than to a seperate hard disk partition. Hard disk partitions, or logical volumes within an extended partition (assuming a Master Boot Record formatted hard drive) can also have a read-only attribute that can then be controlled by diskpart.
    However, the fact that windows has actually allowed you to login and check attributes in windows explorer would suggest that writing to disk has been possible during the startup of windows, at least on the partition\volume that contains windows. If it wasn't possible to write to disk then my experience suggests a Blue Screen or halted system would usually result fairly swiftly.

    Driver based RAID
    That does not rule out the possibility that you have, or have had a driver based RIAD issue. I do note that XFX create motherboards using the Nvidia nForce chipset (v5, 6, 7), and these have a driver based RAID solution. I have no evidence either way but I could see the possibility that they may not be immune to "a conflict with 3rd party drivers" issue, in a similar way to what I suspect may have occured with the ICH9R chipset on my machine.
    However, in that scenario, either the machine would not boot at all, or I received "Media is Write-Protected" messages. Are you recieving these?

    Thanks

    IrisedParhelion

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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