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Posts Tagged ‘usb hack’

Solved: Windows Will Not Assign Drive Letter To USB Flash Drive

Problem Issue:

This is happening on Win8 and Windows 10.
When I remove a USB drive and reconnect it, Windows will not assign a drive letter. Clearly this is a problem as every other computer I use assigns a drive letter.

There are three solutions. All of which will work.

      1) You can go into Disk Management and select the device and assing a drive letter. This is a manual process and not ideal for each time you plug in a flash drive.
      2) Good chance the driver or registry entry for that device is rogue or corrupt. Use this USBScrub tool to remove the registry entry. Chances are this will fix the problem. USBScrub link
      3) Use ‘diskpart’ and enable the automount feature.
  • Open Command Prompt as Administrator (search for Command Prompt in the Start Menu, right click, Run as Administrator)
  • Type ‘diskpart’ and hit Enter.
  • Once in the ‘diskpart’ command prompt type ‘automount enable’ and hit Enter.
  • Type ‘exit’ and click Enter

For solution number one from above, Disk Management is really the GUI version for diskpart, but a GUI (Graphical User Interface) which has scaled down functions from what all the things diskpart can really do.

Diskpart has 37 commands that you can do very cool things with. The 38th command is

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How To: Run LED Solo From PCless USB Connector

Do you see something odd about this picture?  Maybe the fact an LED is illuminating from a USB connector with no PC in site?  Ya that’s it.  Good job Sherlock.

USB LED

So what we have here is a How To or USB Hack on running an LED from a Super-capacitor.  If you are non-technical, then we basically mean a very short lived battery to run the LED.  A super-capacitor has the ability to store energy for longer periods of time over traditional capacitors – yet still not long enough as with batteries.The concept of this tutorial is to wire a super-capacitor to a USB socket whereby your computer can charge up the capacitor and when disconnected you’ll get about 10 minutes of LED illumination.

USB LED

Granted there isn’t much day-to-day use with this USB hack, but just a fun little project if you have the time. Over on the Instructables website there is an updated USB tutorial which includes Continue Reading

DIY: How To Get Power From USB For Any USB Gadget Project

Here is a 7 minute video on how to wire up any USB port and suck the power right out for that USB gadget you dreamed up at 3am.  For DIY projects, USB hacking is one of the most popular forms of taking something ordinary and making something unique.  So if you’ve never tried a hack or USB tutorial, this is a great building block for yourself.  Enjoy! Source: YouTube. Continue Reading

USB Hack: miniUSB Connector Hack for Dell Streak

John from LinuxSlate.com figured out the Dell Streak connector for sync and charging is nothing more than a PDMI connector.  So John made a nice little USB hack to eliminate the need for Dell’s expensive accessory kit in exchange for a quick DIY mod with a miniUSB cable.

USB Hack Dell Streak

The USB hack allows you to connect the Dell Streak to a PC for synchronizing with your computer, or simply charging the device from any USB charger [or port]. The modification also allows the unit to appear as a normal mass storage device or removable memory. Continue Reading

USB Hack: Apple USB Trackpad

All of Apple products are designed as a “less is more” philosophy where a user just “knows” how to use the product when they hold it or see it.  The Apple Trackpad is no exception.  Great looking product that works exceptionally well and is bare bone minimum on design features.

USB Hack, Apple Trackpad

One of the beautiful elements of the Trackpad is the wireless freedom you get from using the product.  For the wireless product you need juice.  The Trackpad does this via batteries.  However, some get tired of replacing the batteries [like it’s that hard] and did a simple USB hack to power the Trackpad.  This hack is not used for communication, that is still done through Blue-tooth, but this is only for eliminating the need to swap batteries or constantly recharge them. To accomplish the hack, remove the pad’s batteries, strip a USB cable down to the red and black power wires and attach them to a battery-sized wooden dowel. Finally, push the dowel inside the pad’s battery compartment and presto! It works. Granted this is a USB hack even my 7 year old could do [less the wire stripping] and I’d recommend making something a bit more elegant. Continue Reading

How To: Use Physical Lock To Enable / Disable USB Ports

I came across this very interesting USB hack from TechOat the other day.  The concept of this modification is taking the key of a power box in your computer and turning that into the physical on/off switch for USB communication. The premise is disassembling the wires of the USB cable and port and weaving that into the circuit of a locking switch on your PC.  I think this illustration shows it best:

USB lock on off

What I particularly like about this USB hack, is the physical requirement to have the key in order to work the USB port.  This type of security [more fun then practical] for USB devices in general is much better than a Truecrypt type solution as that only protects the device, not the system. So what you need includes: Small USB thumb drive USB extension cable or USB socket and plug with cable Locking switch DPST Plastic box The rest is just elbow grease to get it working, for the specific details and tutorial, jump here.

USB lock enable disable

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DIY: Wood USB Marble Machine

During the month of July Instructables is running a USB contest for who can make the best mod while incorporating USB technology.  For this reason, we’ve been keeping a close eye on what you creative folks are up to. Today we bring you the 100% natural, all wood, USB marble machine.

DIY USB marble machine

I will admit the name is more impressive then the look, but the cool factor outweighs the look. The wood USB marble machine is an excellent DIY project and will open up your eyes to all sorts of different ways you can make an automated, electric motor powered marble machine. Check out the video, it’s well worth it! Learn how at Instructables. Continue Reading

USB Hack: Nexus One Turns Into Full Blown Portable Workstation

The love for Linux is that with a bit of tweaking you can do just about anything. Case in point: Sven Killig took the Nexus One, loaded up some code to control the USB host controller and is now running a full work station. Now this sounds awesome. Sven can run a digital camera off his phone, stream video from a USB stick to his screen or even run a printer off the USB port. Check out the screen-shot of his work station…

USB Hack Nexus One

So if you’re like me, this project would be in the advanced level of Instructables for DIY mods, but thanks to Sven’s recording skills, we have a video to tell us how. The best part of all this? He’s got the whole thing demonstrated for you on video, but not only that, you can hit up the down-loadable binaries from his website. And while he tried all of this on Android 2.2, which means its the only version of Android it’s been successfully tested on (at the moment), Sven believes that it will work on Android 2.1, too. Source: SlashGear.com. Continue Reading

USB Flashrods

What do you get when you cross a Hot Wheels car and USB stick?  Flashrods. We’ve seen plenty of mods for USBs and hot rods, but we found one guy making a part time job of it. Sure you can do your own, but getting the masterpiece on the first try is hard, buy a Flashrod of $25 and have it done right. There are 20+ styles to select and available in different GB capacities.

USB flashrod

Source:  DigitalDrops. Continue Reading

USB Hot Plate From Old CPU

Here is a simple and incredibly fun USB hack where you turn an old CPU into a hot plate for your coffee, tea or some liquid fragrance [in a dish].

USB hot plate

This very useful USB hack can be done in 4 steps.
  • Step 1) Tools and Materials
1. A dead CPU. (Ofcourse you can use a working one but it won’t be feasible.) 2. A USB cable 3. A Fan grill with screws. 4. Any box (I used a wooden tie box cover) 5. A rotary Tool (the best tool ever invented) 6. Epoxy 7. A creative artistic mind…[continute]
  • Step 2) The Idea
A CPU will still have some working electronic circuits even if it stopped functioning probably. And this project will use the heat generated by running some Volts in the CPU through a USB cable.  First things first. Be Very Careful. Connecting a malfunctioning CPU to your computer may and will damage your computer’s ports or even worse. If you don’t have enough…[continue]
  • Step 3) The Steps
First, prepare the base. You have to find a thin box or a box cover to use as the base of the plate. I used a tie box cover made of wood because it has the same thickness as my laptop. Now put the CPU over the base you picked and mark a square to drill with your rotary device. The square must be a little bit bigger than the CPU. The reason behind the bigger hole…[continue]
  • Step 4) Preparing the hot plate
locate the ground pins in your CPU and that can be done by reviewing the CPU data sheet or simply by the devastating trial and error. Cut the USB wire and pass it through the hole you made previously in the base. Strip the USB cable and locate the black and red weirs (black wire = ground, Red wire = +5V). You can cut out the white and green data weirs for more space…[continue] Clearly this tutorial is from Instructables…Thanks Eric! Continue Reading

USB Hack: Motorola Android With USB Connectivity

I was given a tip today on how someone hacked the Motorola Android and now has USB connectivity. It’s a great little hack so now just about any USB device could potentially be connected to the Android.  The question becomes what kind of drivers will the Android support so that printers, controllers, USB sticks etc can be used. The hack is fairly simply.  With a little amount of effort, it is possible to enable the B port of the Android as a host interface, meaning the cable USB hack supplies power and acts as the bus controller for connectivity.

android hack

You’ll need to make two things, a micro-dongle to enable the port (you plug it in during boot time) and a cable with the right connectors on each end (for connecting your peripheral). To do this you’ll need three cables:
  • A car charging cable (off-the-shelf at the Verizon store)
  • A Micro-USB cable (as above)
  • A USB extender cable (the teeny ones that sometimes come free with USB keys work great)
The full write up and USB hack can be found here. Continue Reading

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