Quick Fix: Unable to safely remove a USB external drive in Windows 10

If you connect a USB 3.0 external storage device to your Windows 10 PC, you may occasionally encounter incidents where the external hard drive can't be safely ejected either through the System Tray or from File Explorer.

A message is displayed indicating the USB Mass Storage Device is busy and can't be removed, despite no file transfer activities being performed.

If you aren't performing any file tasks using File Explorer and the USB external drive refuses to eject, close any open instances of Microsoft Edge browser. Once Edge browser and any tabs are closed, attempt to eject the external device safely once more from the System Tray or File Explorer (right-click on the storage device instance and then click Eject).

Note: This issue doesn't apply to external optical drives.

Edge Browser may actually prevent you from disconnecting a USB external hard drive.


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