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New Build, a random new Drive Apeared

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April 28, 2010 9:53:59 PM

I asked this question in the General Storage section but no one seems to know so maybe I'll have a bit more luck here.

"I just finished a build with an SSD as a boot drive (C drive), one DVD writer (D drive) and a WD Caviar lack 1 TB as a data drive (E drive). However, yesterday when I go to windows explorer, in addition to my drives I now see a "Local Disk (Q:) " listed below the other drives. I can't click on it (Access Denied) and in properties everything is zero. What is this, how did this appear and how do i get rid of it? Thanks"

Also, since this was asked:

"In the disk management screen: In the upper part of the screen I see the C drive (healthy), E drive (healthy) and something called "System Reserved" Healthy (System, Active, Primary partition) - 100mb. In the bottom part, there are no "Q" drives of any sort. That is why I am wondering, I have no idea where this drive came from or what it is."
April 28, 2010 10:16:13 PM

Is the mystery "Q" drive a previously mapped network drive, and the other machine is off? Don't think so, as yu did a fresh install.

Did you, or do you have a RAMDrive installed in your "config.sys" or "autoexe.bat" files? I think you would know if you installed that. The only way that could be is if you formatted the drive in DOS, and did a SYS C: after format, and copied a set of start up files from DOS. If you don't know, this is not the case.

No RAID drives, right?

Else, I'm at a loss. :( 

As for the "System Reserved" drive, that's part of Windows 7 install. Leave it alone, it's only 100MB. ;) 

Good luck, and let us know, I tried to help another user last weekm try to access a parrtion, but we never got it. :( 
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April 28, 2010 10:25:28 PM

1) Any card readers integrated into any devices or panels ?
My External Media HDD has card slots which look just like that, when empty.

2) might it be a botched partition ?

3) what is the last drive letter ... before "Q:"

4) Do you have a digital camera or a camcorder hooked to any port ?

5) Do you have any digital camera that has WiFi?

6) Do you have any other blue-tooth or wifi toys that may be connecting (trying)?

7) Are you on a WiFi network (or router?) ... Does your system have WiFi ?

8) Does your mobo have any shared RAM or dedicated RAM or SideCar RAM ?

9) Any add-on controllers/caches of any kind?

10) Flip thru your mobo manual (or download) and look for any special features which would explain.

To me ? Sounds like an empty flash drive/slot that is attached to your system or is glomming onto it wirelessly ... could even belong to a neighbor.

It could even be a PDA "expressing it's presence, but not enabled".

Now I am curious ... Please let us know ! ... (a riddle).


= Al =

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April 28, 2010 10:34:29 PM

Also ... If you have any sort of multi-track recorder or synthesizer or other e-Music devices ... they often have a flash memory slot.

It could even be some sort of gaming peripheral (like a Guitar Hero type device) that has a local flash storage option.

EVEN a PHOTO PRINTER may often have some sort of local flash storage slot (or wireless connect-to-cam) ... Easy Share(TM)" type features which would show up as an empty, removable drive.

The fact that it shows a size of ZERO and is not accessible, tells me that you have aSOME sort of removable storage drive (or option) attached ... or, that some device is attached with the provision for adding local memory (which emulates a drive).

= Al =
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April 28, 2010 10:40:41 PM



Disable any wifi and infra-red ports ... disconnect all USB ... check again.
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April 28, 2010 11:37:08 PM

1) Any card readers integrated into any devices or panels ?
My External Media HDD has card slots which look just like that, when empty.

- No, nothing but the two drives and the single DVD writer

2) might it be a botched partition ?

- Shouldn't it have apeared right away. The SSD i did not allocate anything specific just did a clean Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit install and let it do its thing. Now, when I go to disk management in the Bottom part for C drive (the SSD) it is divided into 2 (one is system reserved 100 mb (says system reserved) and the rest it says (C:)  - Boot, Page File, Crash dump (aka my main drive)). The 1TB WD is formatted as NTFS with the full drive being one single partition

3) what is the last drive letter ... before "Q:"

- You mean in Windows Explorer when i go to my computer? Its listed under hard drives and being last after C and E.

4) Do you have a digital camera or a camcorder hooked to any port ?

- I did install the Canon EOS utility to transfer pics from my Canon Rebel T1i dSLR. I already transfered pics once through the front USB (its a Silverstone Ft02-B by the way). But I do not have it connected all the time.

5) Do you have any digital camera that has WiFi?

- As far as I know no. I only use the above camera which to the best of my knowledge does not have any wifi.

6) Do you have any other blue-tooth or wifi toys that may be connecting (trying)?

- Well to the best of my knowledge all blue-tooth or wi-fi enabled gadgets are either completely powered down or have blue-toth off. My router has wi-fi on (PC is wired to it) but as far as I know my computer doesn't even have wi-fi or bluetooth (I will put up my system specs right now in my next post.

7) Are you on a WiFi network (or router?) ... Does your system have WiFi ?

- As I mentioned above (before reading this question) yes that the router has wi-fi on but my PC does not.

8) Does your mobo have any shared RAM or dedicated RAM or SideCar RAM ?

- Umm, i ahve no idea lol. I have the ASUS P5X58D Premium with an i7 930 chip. 6 gigs of Corsair Dominator Memory and a single ASUS Radeon HD 5850.

9) Any add-on controllers/caches of any kind?

- The only thing outside of core components is a single cold cathode but it is only connected to the power supply and not MOBO.

10) Flip thru your mobo manual (or download) and look for any special features which would explain.

- Will do again but I don't think so.

P.S. I have isntalled the ASUS Gamer OSD and SmartDoctor software that is supposed to monitor and help overclock the GPU (have only used Smart Doctor to look at temperature and never changed anything). THe day it appeared the only things I really installed were RealTemp which I then deleted and AIM. Some other software the day before but nothing major (Firefox, EOS Utilities, Windows Office 2010 Beta, iTunes and Quicktime)
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April 28, 2010 11:40:53 PM

Also another thing, the onyl other peripheral I have connected is a Logitech USB webcam which Windows automatically found drivers for.

System specs:

Silverstone Ft02-B Case
ASUS P6X58D Premium Mobo
i7 930 with Megahalem Rev.B in Push-Pull
Corasair Dominator Memory (3x2GB)
ASUS EAH5850 Radeon HD
HP dvd1260 DVD writer
Boot drive - Intel x25-M (80gb)
Data Drive - WD Caviar Black 1TB
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April 28, 2010 11:42:31 PM

And finally, I don't really care if it is there (it just kinda freaked me out it appeared) so ultimately it would be just great if I can hide it from the windows explorer but obviously would be nice to know what it is though.
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April 28, 2010 11:55:46 PM


I think that your Canon camera mapped and reserved that drive letter, when you did the install .

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April 28, 2010 11:57:07 PM


Take some photos ... plug your camera into it's "port" and go into explorer and see what you have.

LEMME KNOW! ... this may come up again.
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April 28, 2010 11:58:50 PM

So if that is the case, if I were to connect it right now, would the Q drive then have actual number to it (i.e. the amount of space the pics on the 4GB SDHC card)? Would that be a way to test it?
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April 29, 2010 12:00:05 AM

Nevermind I will do it, i posted my reply before I saw your second post
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April 29, 2010 12:02:06 AM

Just connected it and no Q drive still remains at 0 and Canon Camera comes up as a different device in that list underneath all of them.
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April 29, 2010 12:08:28 AM

All I can say is that it looks and behaves exactly like a flash drive with no card (or empty card) ... or ... some other removable or external storage device which is empty, removed, or not present.

I have never owned a system with an eSATA port ... might be that (enabled or not).

You might mess around with the eSATA/USB3 port config and see if anything changes BUT, hey, if it is working fine, might be best to just leave "well-enough" alone ... huh?

No photo printer is attached ... hmmmm ...

We may never know!

= Alvin = (Please, DO report, if you should ever discover the cause).

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April 29, 2010 12:17:06 AM


Well ... HERE IS A BIG PIECE OF THE PUZZLE !!!

Just for kicks ... I searched Google on "DRIVE LETTER Q " ... Got several hits ... So far I have just read one and it sounds like the exact same issue ... Appears to be Windows install related ...

... Read the first 5 posts and the last 2, on this thread ... just for starters.

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en/w7itproin...

= Alvin =
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April 29, 2010 12:17:42 AM

Well thanks and if anything comes I will post it up or just message you directly (and you do the same). Considering that it is my first build and I am not an expert by any means (completely self-taught by a LOT of reading lol) I will be following the "leave it as is as long as it works" advice. I might pull the web-cam a bit later to see if that somehow magically makes a difference but like you said it is one of those slightly quirky things that happen sometimes. Also, I am new to W7 (been using XP since god knows when) so I a not too keen on messing with any settings :) 

Again, thanks for brainstorming with me, the "storage" part of these forums wasn't as welcoming.
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April 29, 2010 12:20:49 AM

Not exactly sure what these guys are talking about (never done that) but it now seems clear, to me, that it is some sort of "virtual sharing proxy drive" ... or some such thing.

http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/appvge...

ADVICE: Ignore it and DO NOT MESS WITH IT (Do not try to remove or alter).

= LEAVE IT BE =
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April 29, 2010 12:21:48 AM


Go back and read my previous two posts (just edited with new links)
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April 29, 2010 12:25:10 AM

Yeah, I posted my last answer before I read your post about the other forum. (Edit: now I have) Hmm, it does seem to be the same case as me and with the second to last post, frankly I didn't even know what they were talking about! Ok, thanks for putting my mind at ease that it is nothing wrong with my system (enough nerves were spent the night between i finished my build and the morning of my first start-up! ). But ultimately, from everything that I read on that thread it does seem that it is an almost natural(?) thing that should happen. Now we (more or less) know. So yes, my original course of action (do not touch anything you are not 100% clear about) seems to be best.

Still, I wonder if i should write to Microsoft support just to check in why doesn't it appear immediately.

EDIT 2: I really think Microsoft should allow an easy way to hide these virtual drives for everyday users.
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April 29, 2010 12:29:10 AM


Yup .. One of the "Win7 Natural Wonders of the World" ... so to speak ...


... Let's just call it a feature, waiting for some "Brainiac" to come along and enable.


= Shall We ? =
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April 29, 2010 12:33:04 AM


If you leave this thread open ... I am sure someone will eventually tell us ALL about it ... snore.
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April 29, 2010 12:33:53 AM

yes we shall but damn how lost I feel in Win7 menus after XP...Too much eye candy?! But i do love Aero with changing desktops (I know sometimes I'm really easy to please). Idk if any serious explanations are really needed beyond what we discovered, "If you don't know it, you obviously don't need it" seems to be the case here though, as bad as it sounds. Could be interesting to find out what triggers the appearance of the drive though.
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April 29, 2010 12:36:21 AM


And ... You have to admit that it is pretty dam amusing BOTH that I would even TRY to enter "Drive letter 'Q' " into Google ... AND ... That those two hits sifted to the top of the search results ... Go and figger !!

Google and Wikipedia ... Ya just GOTTA love 'em !

= Q:/ =
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April 29, 2010 12:40:33 AM

PS : Iffin ya wanna ... I think you kin just choose "Windows Classic" and shut that other "cool" stuff down ...

... Video Editors and Render Artists generally strip all those features to the bone.

= OK ... I'll try not to reply to this thread (any further), after reading any further response.
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April 29, 2010 12:43:44 AM

Yeah, and that is why i came directly here because I really did not think anything like that would ever come up! Seriously though, Win7 needs to come with a paper manual (instead of that useless picture book they include) to tell me these things dammit!!! Also, interesting idea, I can't do it now obviously since I just formatted my drive (waiting for a 1TB drive to format is like watching hair grow) but if you ever will, I wonder if "Q" is available as one of the drive names that you can assign (if it is that would be a disturbing turn and if not then I guess it is always reserved).


Nah, I love it (sucker for pretty I guess) just need some time to get used to it all.

And finally, thanks again, I shall sleep soundly tonight.
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April 29, 2010 5:57:47 PM

I went to the link on the 14th post. THis leave me 1 question:

What version of Windows 7 did you install?

I take it is 'Professional' or 'Ultimate', to get the "Virtual Machine" application (XP mode?)? Didn't this install as part of an online update/upgrade?

Glad you got it "resolved!"

L8R! :hello: 

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April 29, 2010 11:55:07 PM

It is Windows 7 Ultimate 64 Bit. The thing is that it just popped up about 3 days after I installed the OS (which freaked me out) but yeah as Alvin said, google is a true wonder. And sorry for ignoring your first post. I somehow missed it in the begining.
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April 30, 2010 11:18:57 AM

to elaborate on Alvin...as in "Que" also I think it may be referring to Bond's Q
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April 30, 2010 11:21:30 PM

Alvin Smith said:
If you leave this thread open ... I am sure someone will eventually tell us ALL about it ... snore.



Windows 7 automatically creates a 100mg partition labeled as "system reserved" for the purpose of Bitlocker.

Too lazy to type out an explanation so I'll just link and quote.

Quote:
BitLocker Drive Encryption (BitLocker for short) helps prevent a thief who boots another operating system or runs a software hacking tool from breaking Windows 7 file and system protections or performing offline viewing of the files stored on the protected drive. Windows 7 BitLocker shares many of the same core benefits of Windows Vista BitLocker


http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/dd548341%28W...

Normally doesn't show up in explorer though. Not sure what you changed to make it pop up.
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May 1, 2010 11:48:46 AM

Actually, the 100 mb partition is not the Q drive that popped up. The Q drive is listed as "0 mb" and is actually there for virtualization. Note the link Alvin put up a few posts up but thanks for the 100 mb explanation, I was wondering what that was for.
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