• Using a USB Drive on a Mac Using a USB Drive on a Mac
    Using a USB Drive on a Mac
  • Using a USB Drive on a Windows PC Using a USB Drive on a Windows PC
    Using a USB Drive on a Windows PC

Frequently Asked Questions

General USB FAQs

Can I use my DataTraveler as a bootable USB device?

Although it is possible to boot from the DataTraveler, it is not a feature Kingston supports.These drives are intended as storage devices.

FAQ: KTD-082913-GEN-27
Are there any security or write protection features available for this DataTraveler?

Unfortunately this unit does not have any security or write protection features. If you receive a write protection message with this drive, check for the following:

  1. Verify that you are allowedto write to removable storage devices. There may be a securitysetting in the OS that disables write access to removable storage devices.
  2. Make sure you have notenabled write protection on the drive by using a third party software.
  3. If none of the above apply,the drive may be defective. Contact Kingston TechnicalSupport for further assistance.
FAQ: KDT-011411-PW-08
My DataTraveler will not accept a 4GB or larger file. Why?

To transfer files larger than 4GB, the DataTraveler must have a NTFS or exFAT file system. Unfortunately, the FAT32 file system is not capable of handling a single file larger than 4GB (to be exact, one byte less than 4GB). Follow the steps below to format the DataTraveler with an NTFS File system:

Warning, all data on the DataTraveler will be lost! Please back up the data on the DataTraveler before proceeding.

  1. Locate My Computer(Computer in Vista and 7). Right-click on the Kingstondrive and select Format.
  2. Select NTFS or exFAT fromthe file system drop-down list.
  3. Select Quick Format as theFormat option and click Start.
    Note: If NTFS is not an availableoption, close the Format window and follow steps 4-9.
  4. Right-click My Computer(Computer in Vista) and select Properties.
  5. Select the Hardware tab andclick Device Manager.
  6. Expand Disk Drives andright-click on the Kingston drive. Select Properties.
  7. Click on the Policies taband select "Optimize for performance”.
  8. Click OK.
  9. Repeat steps 1-3.

Be aware that MacOS 10.6.5 will support full read and write access to exFAT formatted drives. MacOS still has read only access to NTFS formatted drives.

Some devices (MP3 players,digital photo frames, etc) will not read NTFS or exFAT file systems.

Also, Windows XP and Vistawill require an update in order to access exFAT.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-05
My DataTraveler no longer works or I can no longer view files saved to the DataTraveler. Can the files on the DataTraveler be recovered?

If you have data on the DataTraveler that is important to you, we strongly recommend that you use one of the two possible means of data recovery (see below). Kingston does not offer data recovery services. For more information on ourwarranty policy, please visit

  1. Contact a company thatspecialises in data recovery services, such as Driver Savers at or Ontrack at or carry out a Googlesearch for "data recovery".
  2. Go to, search for "datarecovery" and download one of the many utilities for data recovery whichare fairly simple to use. We suggest trying one of the free versions as they work just as well as the paid versions. However for this option to work, the computer must assign a drive letter to the device. Even so it is not guaranteed to work. If it does not, option 1 would be your best bet.


FAQ: KDT-012611-GEN-25
The full capacity of my DataTraveler or Flash media is not available for storage. Why?

Some of the flash storagedevice’s listed capacity is used for formatting and other functions and is notavailable for data storage. Therefore, you will not see the full capacity.

When a flash storage device is manufactured, steps are taken to ensure that the device operates reliably and permits the host device (computer, digital camera, PDA, etc.) to access the memory cells; i.e., to store and retrieve data on the flash storage device. These steps, loosely called "formatting", use some of the memory cells within the device and thus reduce the capacity available for data storage by the end user.

Formatting includes the followingoperations:

  1. Testing each memory cell inthe flash storage device.
  2. Identifying all defectivecells and taking steps to ensure that no data will be written to or read from adefective cell.
  3. Reserving some cells to serve as "spares." Flash memory cells have a long but finite lifetime. Therefore, some cells are held in reserve to replace any memory cells that may fail over time.
  4. Creating a File AllocationTable (FAT) or other directory. To enable flash storage devices to store and access customer files conveniently, a file management system must be created to allow any device or computer to identify the files stored in the flash storage device. The most common type of file management system for flash storage devices is the File Allocation Table (FAT), which is also used on hard drives.
  5. Reserving some cells foruse by the flash storage device’s controller, e.g., for storing firmwareupdates and other controller-specific information.
  6. Where applicable, reservingsome cells for special features. For example, thespecification for Secure Digital (SD) cards requires reserved areas to supportspecial copy protection and security features.
FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-06
The Kingston driver loads properly but the drive does not show up in My Computer. If you look at Device Manager, Disk Drives, Kingston Properties, under the Settings tab, there is no drive letter listed in the appropriate field. Another USB device, such as a printer, works fine so we know that the port is enabled. How do I resolve this?

Unplug the other USB device, insert the DataTraveler drive and restart the system. After the DataTraveler is configured you should then be able to connect the other USB device.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-15
What operating systems support exFAT?
Operating System exFAT support Patch download
Windows 7 Supported natively
Windows Vista Requires update to Service Pack 1 or 2 (both supports exFAT) Download Service Pack 1 (with exFAT support)
Download Service Pack 2 (with exFAT support)
Windows XP
(Service Pack 2 or 3)
Requires exFAT patch update Must have Service Pack 2 or 3 installed to use this update
Download exFAT patch update
Mac OS X Requires Mac OS X version 10.6.6 and above
FAQ: KGF-022811-GEN-02
When I insert the DataTraveler into the USB port on my keyboard, USB hub or in the front of my tower, the unit is either not recognised or I receive an error message. Why?

If you have a desktop computer, make sure the DataTraveler is inserted directly into one of the main USB ports. These USB ports are usually located in the back of the tower. If these ports are difficult to access, we recommend a 3ft USB extension cable.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-09
My DataTraveler is not being detected in Windows. Why?

1. The DataTraveler could be conflicting with a pre-assigned drive letter. To resolve, do the following (Do not do this for a "Privacy" drive that assigns two drive letters):

    1. Insert the DataTraveler and open "Control Panel". Then open "Administrative Tools".
    2. Open Computer Management
    3. Select “Disk Management” on the left window pane.
    4. Locate the DataTraveler on the right window pane.
    5. Right-click on the drive and select “Change Drive Letter and Paths.”
    6. Click Change and select a new drive letter from the drop-down box. Then click OK.

2. The DataTraveler may be conflicting with pre-installed software. Disable all applications running in the background prior to installation of the Data Traveler.

3. Make sure Windows, any USB controller drivers and the system BIOS for you computer is up to date.

4. If you have a desktop computer, make sure the DataTraveler is inserted directly into one of the main USB ports on the back of the PC. Front ports, keyboard ports or USB Hubs may not supply sufficient power for the High Speed DataTraveler to function properly.

5. Check for a possible conflict is another USB device such as a printer or USB card reader. Unplug the other USB device, insert the DataTraveler drive and restart the system. After the DataTraveler is configured you should then be able to connect the other USB device.

FAQ: KDT-012314-GEN-02
My DataTraveler is not full, but when I try to transfer data to the drive I receive an error message stating, "The directory or file cannot be created". Why?

This is a limitation of the file system. In order to transfer more data to this unit, you will need to remove the current data on the drive and create folders on the drive to copy files to. Once this is done, you should be able to transfer more data to the DataTraveler.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-12
When using the DataTraveler with a boot utility or some other third party software, the capacity of the drive is now much smaller then it was originally. How do I restore the capacity of the drive?

This usually is caused by a program that re-partitions the drive to a smaller capacity it can use. The native Windows format utility is usually not able to restore the capacity. We suggest you search online for a third party format utility.

FAQ: KTD-012711-GEN-26

Windows related FAQs

My USB drive works fine under Windows 7, but when I insert it into a different operating system, e.g., Windows XP, it prompts me to reformat the drive. Why?

You may have formatted the drive with an exFAT file system while using Windows 7. In order to resolve this, reformat the drive with the FAT32 or NTFS file system. You may also be able to update your operating system to be compatible with exFAT. However, be aware that some devices (MP3 players, digital photo frames, etc) will not read the exFAT file system.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-10
The computer recognises the DataTraveler if it is inserted during boot, but it is not recognised if I insert the device while the computer is already on. How do I resolve this?

This may be due to a power setting for your USB ports. Here are the steps to change this setting:

  1. Click Start > Control Panel.
  2. Click Performance and the Maintenance link.
  3. Click the System ControlPanel link.
  4. Click on the Hardware tab.
  5. Click the Device Managerbutton.
  6. Click the + in front ofUniversal Serial Bus controllers to expand this hardware category.
  7. Right-click the USB RootHub and select Properties.
  8. Click the Power Managementtab and deselect the box next to "Allow the computer to turn off thisdevice to save power".
  9. Repeat steps 7 and 8 foreach additional USB root hub listed.
  10. Reboot the computer.
FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-13
The computer has mapped network drives. Windows says the drive is installed correctly but no drive letter is assigned to it. Why?

Windows assigns new drives to the next available physical drive. It will sometimes take the same drive letter as a network drive for this reason. This is a common problem with removable storage devices.

To resolve this go to Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Computer Management. Note the drives on the right window pane. See if the Kingston (x) is recognised. (x) denotes the drive letter that Windows assigned to the Data Traveler.

If the DataTraveler isusing the same drive letter as one of the other drives, right-click theKingston Drive letter and click on "Change Drive Letter and Paths".

In the next dialog box,click on the "Change" button and assign a drive letter that is notcurrently being used.

Note: Do not manually change drive letters if you have a "Privacy" DataTraveler that assigns two drive letters for the device.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-03
My DataTraveler is 64GB or larger. I formatted it using NTFS and I want to format it back to FAT32. How do I do this?

Because the DataTraveler is 32GB or larger, Windows 7 will not allow you to format it to FAT32. You will have to convert it using a Command Prompt. Click on Start>Run and type in CMD and click on the OK button. Type the following in the command prompt (see image). Replace F with the drive letter for your drive. Please take notice of the spaces in between.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-14
When I try to format a drive that is larger than 32GB in Windows XP or Vista, I am unable to select a file system. No file system options are displayed. How do I resolve this?

Follow the steps below toformat the DataTraveler with an NTFS File system using a Windows PC.

Note: Admin rights are required.

  1. Remove all other externalflash devices from your computer.
  2. Right-click My Computer(Computer in Vista) and select Properties.
    Note: If User Account Control isenabled in Windows Vista, an alert will display. Click Continue to proceed.
  3. From the right side window,double-click Storage and then double-click Disk Management.
  4. From the right side window,right-click the Kingston (Removable) drive and select Format.
    Note: You may receive a warning: "This is the active partition on this disk. All data on the partition will be lost. Are you sure you want to format this partition?" Click Yes to proceed.
  5. In the Format window,select the “NTFS” file system and select the box next to “Perform a quickformat”. Click OK.
  6. Click OK on the Format Warning window.

The Kingston (Removable) drive window will display "Formatting" while the drive is being formatted. Once the format is complete, the status will revert to "Healthy".

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-17
After inserting the DataTraveler into the USB port of a computer running Windows Vista or Windows 7, an AutoPlay dialog appears with an option to "Speed up my system using Windows ReadyBoost". What is this feature and can I enable it?

ReadyBoost is a Windows Vista and Windows 7 feature which has the ability to use USB flash drive storage space to improve system performance. The DataTraveler does not support Windows ReadyBoost.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-11
Are Kingston DataTravelers compatible with Windows ME?

Unfortunately none ofKingston DataTravelers are supported in Windows ME.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-21
My DataTraveler will not install on Windows Vista. Why?

There are several possiblereasons why your DataTraveler is not installing on Windows Vista.

  1. If the “Add New Hardware”wizard is searching for a device driver, point it toWindows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository and enable “Include subfolders” inthe Browse window. If this fails, point to one of the subfolders within FileRepository:

  2. If the FileRepositorylocation does not work, point to the following location: Windows\System32\Spool\Driversand enable “Include subfolders” in the Browse window.
  3. Microsoft has released ahotfix for USB devices that Vista is unable to detect automatically.Click on the following linkor copy and paste to your web browser for details:
  4. If the hotfix does notwork, the usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf files may be missing or corrupted.
    1. Insert the DataTraveler, ifyou receive a “Found New Hardware” dialog box, click Cancel and unplug theDataTraveler.
    2. Go to(C:)>;Windows>inf to confirm that the usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnffiles are present. If missing, they may have been corrupt or deleted during Vista installation/ upgrade and therefore will not load. If the usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf files are missing, do the following:

      1. Locate the latest usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf files fromWindows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\usbstor.inf

        Note: There may be multiple usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf files. Choose the most recently created file. To do this, sort the files by date.
      2. Copy the usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf files to Windows>inf.
      3. Reinsert the DataTraveler.

        If the above instructions did not work, and/or the usbstor.inf and usbstor.pnf exist in Windows\Inf, remove the drive, reinsert it and wait for the Found New Hardware dialog box. Select "Locate and install driver software (recommended)". Click on the Continue button for permission. Select "Don't search online". Select "I don't have disc, show me other instructions". Select "My computer for driver software (advanced)". Browse the following locations to search for a driver (enable "Include subfolders" in the Browse window):
      4. a) Windows\Inf
        c) Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\
        d) Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\usbstor.inf_...
        e) Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\disk.inf_...
        f) Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\volume.inf_...
        g) Windows\System32\DriverStore\FileRepository\wpdfs.inf_...
        h) Windows\System32\Spool\Drivers

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-19
Are there any DataTraveler drivers for Windows 95 or Windows NT?

No. Windows 95 and Windows NT do not have support for USB devices. Unfortunately Kingston cannot create a driver that will enable these operating systems to support USB drives.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-22
After installing the DataTraveler, two drive letters are seen. This occurs on Win98SE. How do I resolve this?

Change Legacy USB supportin the BIOS to Disabled (or the opposite of what it is set at currently).

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-23
I plugged my new Kingston Traveler into my USB port and the computer shows the removable medium drive as Drive D:. My CD-ROM can no longer be accessed. In addition, the device manager displays the primary and secondary IDE controller with an exclamation mark next to them. How do I resolve this?

In order to resolve this, you will need to edit the Registry. If you are not careful you could cause serious damage to the computer. Click on your Start button and then go to Run. Type in the word, "regedit", and click OK. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Services\VxD\IOS and find the word "noide" in the right pane. Delete this entry, save the changes and then reboot the system.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-24

Mac/Linux related FAQs

Is this DataTraveler supported by Linux?

Yes, this DataTraveler issupported by Linux as long as you have Linux Kernel 2.6.x and above.

Please note: If the DataTraveler comes with software, it will not function with Linux. Only the drive itself is compatible with Linux.

FAQ: KDT-011411-DRV-02
My DataTraveler is not recognised by Mac OS X. How do I resolve this?

To resolve this, make sure to insert the drive directly into the USB ports located on the computer. The USB ports found on the keyboard and some hubs may not supply sufficient power to operate the Kingston DataTraveler properly. Also, go to Finder>Preferences>Sidebar and ensure that CD, DVD and iPod and External Disks are selected.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-18
On a Mac, my DataTraveler does not show free space after deleting files. How do I resolve this?

On Macs, you first have to empty the trash can in order to regain the space. You may have to plug the drive back in after emptying the trash.

If this does not work then the device should be completely reformatted. Please follow these instructions for formatting your Kingston device.

WARNING: Formatting will erase all your data so please make sure you have a copy before proceeding.

  1. Go to Go > Applications > Utilities and Open Disk Utility.
  2. Choose your drive from theleft panel and then click Erase on the right.
  3. Select a Volume Format.Choosing MS-DOS File System will allow the drive to work on the Mac and Windows operating systems. If used only in a Mac then select Mac OS Extended as the Volume Format.
  4. Click Erase.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-04
While trying to transfer a file to or from the Data Traveler, the MacOS 10 displays an error stating that the file cannot be modified or moved. Why?

This happens if the DataTraveler has been formatted with Microsoft Windows NTFS. To resolve, format the DataTraveler with Mac OS X using MS-DOS File System.

To format the DataTraveler with Mac OS 10.3.X, do the following:

  1. Click on the "GO" option on the menu bar.
  2. Double-click on "Utilities" (If you do not see Utilities, double-click on Applications and then double-click on the Utilities folder.)
  3. Double-click on the "Disk Utility" icon.
  4. On the Disk Utility Dialog box, click once on the Kingston DataTraveler active partition.
    Note: There will be two listings for the Data Traveler, the first one is the active partition and the second is the volume label.
  5. Click the erase tab located on the right side of the screen.
  6. Using the Volume Format drop-down, select "MS-DOS File System" from the list.
  7. Click Erase.

Be aware MacOS 10.6.5 will support full read and write access to exFAT formatted drives. So formatting the drive using exFAT file system may also resolve this problem. MacOS still has read only access to NTFS formatted drives.

Some devices (MP3 players, digital photo frames, etc) will not read NTFS or exFAT file systems.

Also Windows XP and Vista will require an update in order to access exFAT.

For additional assistance using the Data Traveler, please visit to view the DataTraveler "How To" videos.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-08
After formatting my DataTraveler in Mac OS X, the drive will not operate or format properly under Windows. Why?

After formatting theDataTraveler in Mac OS X, the following symptoms may apply:

  • The drive is not readablein Windows XP.
  • While trying to format the drive in Windows, only 2GB is formatted. Additionally, two partitions are created.
  • After adding data filesonto the drive via Mac, Windows cannot see the data.

This is most likely a result of using the GUID partition table, which is the default partition table for Intel-based Macs. The GUID partition table is only supported in Windows Vista. Windows 7 and Windows XP do not support this file system. To resolve, you must erase the drive via Mac OS X with the appropriate options selected. Follow the steps below to erase your drive properly with Mac OS X.

  • Access Disk Utility
  • Highlight the disk andselect the "Partition" tab
  • Set the volume scheme to"1 Partition"
  • Change the format to"MS-DOS (FAT)"
  • Click the"Options" button near the bottom of the screen and select the “MasterBoot Record” partition table.
  • Click "Apply" tosave the changes and reformat the drive

After the format is complete, verify that the disk is now using MBR by looking at the "Partition Map Scheme" in the lower right corner of the Disk Utility window. It should now display "Master Boot Record".

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-16
While trying to copy files from Mac OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.2 to the USB Flash drive, I receive an "Error code-36" message. What could be the problem?

This is a problem related to copying directories (created with Finder) from and then back to a USB storage device configured with an MS-DOS/FAT file system. Until Apple releases an update addressing this issue, the following is a safe solution.

  1. Launch Terminal via Applications > Utilities and type the following command, making sure to include a space at the end:

  2. Select the foldergenerating “Error code-36". Drag and drop the folderdirectly into the Terminal window.
  3. The path to the folder inquestion should appear at the end of the Terminal command. For example, it may looklike:

    dot_clean /Users/UserName/Desktop/Test_Folder
  4. Press Enter/Return to runthe command. It may appear as if nothinghas happened. However, you should now be able to transfer the folder to the USBstorage device without experiencing an error.
  5. Repeat the process asneeded for additional folders.
FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-20
My DataTraveler is recognised by my MacOS but Windows prompts me to format. Why?

Windows may not recognise the MacOS Extended or Standard file system. To resolve this, format the drive in MacOS DOS so that it can be used in both environments.

WARNING: Formatting will erase all of the data on the DataTraveler. Back up your data before proceeding.

  1. Insert the DataTravelerinto the Mac OS X machine and wait for it to mount.
  2. Click on the “GO” option onthe menu bar.
  3. Double-click on Utilities(If you do not see Utilities, double-click on Applications and thendouble-click on the Utilities folder.)
  4. Double-click on the DiskUtility icon.
  5. In the Disk Utility Dialogbox, click once on the Kingston DataTraveler active partition. Note: There will be two listings for the DataTraveler, the first one is the active partition and the second is the volume label.
  6. Click the Erase tab locatedon the right side of the screen.
  7. Using the Volume Formatdrop-down, select “MS-DOS File System” from the list.
  8. Click Erase.

Be aware that MacOS 10.6.5 will support full read and write access to exFAT formatted drives so formatting the drive using the exFAT file system may also resolve this problem. MacOS still has read only access to NTFS formatted drives.

Some devices (MP3 players,digital photo frames, etc) will not read NTFS or exFAT file systems.

Also, Windows XP and Vistawill require an update in order to access exFAT.

For additional assistance using the DataTraveler, CLICK HERE to view the DataTraveler "How To" videos.

FAQ: KDT-010611-GEN-07

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