How to Fix Folders Turned into Shortcuts On External Hard Drive?

Most of you might have experienced this typical problem. Yes, when you plug your external hard drive or any portable storage media (that you consider as the safe place to keep your important data) into your computer, all you see is shortcut folders and files.

What made your folders turned into shortcuts? Is there any way to open those shortcut folders and access your data? Well, here is the story…

How Folders On External Hard Disk Become Shortcuts?

Certainly, your external hard drive has been infected with malware. Usually, autorun.inf worm or Virus/Trojan turns your healthy folders present on the external hard drive into shortcuts. And, generally, this happens when you hook up your external hard disk with a virus infected computer.

How to Fix Folders That Have Become Shortcuts on Portable Drive?

Even though your external hard drive folders are in inaccessible-state, you can fix this problem via few techniques.

Method #1: Unhide Folder

If folders are affected by malware then they will be in a hidden state, thus you cannot access them. So, disabling their hidden option may help you to solve the problem. And, to unhide your folders,

  • Go to My Computer
  • Switch to View Tab
  • Select the Show Hidden Items option

Method #2: Antivirus Scan

Since, the origin of shortcut folders is malware, removing the virus can help you in fixing the issue. And, to eliminate malware from your external hard drive as well from system, you have to run an efficient antivirus tool in the Full Scan mode, remove virus and then, attempt to access Folders.

Caution: As, virus modifies your file names, trying to access data after removing virus would be a bit tedious job. And, chances are there that along with virus, antivirus tool may also remove your infected files.

Method #3: Command Line

  • Go to Start and type Run
  • In Run search tab, type cmd
  • Type select list
  • Select your external hard drive from the list
  • Then, type del *.lnk
  • Type attrib -h -r -s /s /d X:\*.*(where X is External Hard Disk Drive Letter)

If, none of the above techniques help you in restoring data from folders that have become shortcuts on the external hard drive then get SFWare Partition Recovery tool.

Ideal Program to Recover Shortcut Folders in External Hard Drive:

It is the experts recommended program and is widely used by numerous customers for its excellent performance and easy-to-use interface. SFWare Partition Recovery tool is fitted with enhanced scanning algorithm that thoroughly scans your external hard disk. So that it easily recovers data from shortcut folders in few clicks. Not just shortcut folders, even it can restore formatted partitions on an external hard drive, internal HDD, USB drive, etc. It also helps you in retrieving lost, deleted or inaccessible data from any storage media like SD card, memory card, camera internal memory etc. along with hard drives. Both Windows as well Mac OS X compatible editions are available, which runs on almost all version of operating systems. All types of data like image, videos, music files, documents, etc. can be effortlessly recovered by SFWare recovery and it allows you to preview the restored files before saving them, thus you can estimate its performance prior save your retrieved data.

Step-By-Step Guidelines to Recover Data from Shortcut Folder On Portable Drive:

  • Install SFWare Partition Recovery on your system
  • Connect your external drive that shows shortcut folders
  • Run the tool and opt Formatted / Re-formatted Recovery option on the main screen
  • Select your external disk from the list and proceed
  • Your retrieved files from the portable disk will be listed in Data Type View or File Type View
  • Select your required files, preview them and save on computer’ internal disk

Once, your entire files are recovered from the external hard drive, you can format it for further use.


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