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Use U3 drive as a standard USB drive?

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azjerry
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Use U3 drive as a standard USB drive?

I assume that awith a U3 drive I can delete the U# apps off the main partition if I don't like them and restore them later (assuming I have a backup). Can I do the same with the intial CD-like partition or is it truly read-only?

John T. Haller
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Nope

At the moment, a drive purchased as a U3 drive is a U3 drive no matter what you try and do to it. If you delete the files from the read/write partition, they are rewritten the next time you insert the drive and the read-only partition auto-runs (incidentally, this is a handy way to fully reset a U3 drive if you wind up with an app getting corrupted and refusing to uninstall). There is an uninstall utility that BestBuy has to remove it from their Geek Squad drives (on customer request) that apparently works on other drives. This utility has been leaked online and can be found with a Google search. It permanently removes U3 from the drive. There is no way to reinstall U3 once you've done this. Note that this is unofficial and I take no responsibility if you decide to try it (it could, theoretically, kill your drive... and it probably violates your warranty).

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

azjerry
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official uninstall

The U3 people must have been getting a lot of complaints. I found this link on their site to permanently uninstall the U3 stuff. Good that it can be uninstalled and bad in that it can't be restored nor can you use the emulated CD part.

http://www.u3.com/uninstall/

Lurking_Biohazard
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That figures...

After I spent the time to find it elsewhere!

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techguyone
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I could never understand

why any software that you have as part of a package can not be installed/removed at will, the user should have the choice NOT the manufacturer, still if U3 now have the uninstaller on their site, thart's a step in the right direction, maybe they will give in to User Pressure in due course. U3 has great potential but it's not ready yet, and it shouldn't be forced upon users.

Bruce Pascoe
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...

It's not forced. Non-U3 drives are still readily available. If you don't want U3, then don't buy a U3 drive.

In any case, I don't see why U3 launchpad removal has to be irreversible. I can't imagine it's much more than a firmware hack; if you want to put the U3 stuff back on the drive, just reinstall the original firmware. I guess the U3 guys never thought of that.

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Ashes for Tears
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I'm sure they have. I think

I'm sure they have. I think they're just trying to keep a small amount of control over thier user base. Besides: can you imagine the nightmare tech support could become if consumers just started installing and uninstalling on a whim? Not to mention planting the seeds of piracy in all too fertile minds! Wink Blum No matter how 'secure' something is, sooner or later, someone will crack it.

Ashes

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Bruce Pascoe
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...

I don't see piracy as a major issue, mainly because U3 drives likely have a special chip to handle the U3 stuff, hence the "U3 Smart" labeling on the drive. You'd never be able to install the U3 firmware on a non-U3 drive.

Also, I'm a firm believer that the user is always right. Tech support nightmare or not, it should still be the user's choice whether they want to have U3 or not. If they uninstall the launchpad and change their mind later, there should be nothing stopping them from completely restoring the drive to factory specifications.

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techguyone
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Amen to that

I couldn't agree more, that's spot on.

Ashes for Tears
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Yeah...

I can see your point.
Ashes

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strider_mt2k
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Consumer choices and U3 shooting itself in the foot

I just used the U3 remove utility and I couldn't be happier.

Putting U3 software on a flash drive makes the capacity statements false because part of that advertised space contains content the consumer cannot easily remove.

In all fairness the removal application should be included ON BOARD U3 USB drives with FULL explanations of the pros and cons and removal instructions.

Tim Clark
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It's been Done

Been Done!
The problem is NOT the platform, it's the vendors.
I got a SanDisk 4GB U3 and was unhappy that it did not have, what I thought was, the standard U-SAFE password protection. I called and was told if I used the "Check for sofware updates" that there was a new version of the software that would have the password protection. The new version is
U3 LPV 1,1,0,2
DV 2.15
ADAPI V 4.4.0.47 UNICODE

Not only did it enable password protection, but gave me the option (during the installion only!!) to disable the Automatic running of the Launch Pad (I now "launch" it myself from the drive) AND also included the ability to Uninstall the platform completely from drive using the settings in the Launch Pad itself.

It's always a good idea to call the OEM first.

Way to go Sandisk!

Tim
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Geek w/o portfolio

Things have got to get better, they can't get worse, or can they?

wsm23
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I like the update!

I think this update has turned me back onto U3. My original drive did not ship with the password function, not perfect, but I don't work for the NSA or CIA or even CNN. So I don't need 10 million year encryption.

I also think the launchpad is faster now.

Thanks agin for pointing that out.

Life is about the journey not the destination!

The Kazoo Spartan

wsm23
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See Above

See above

Life is about the journey not the destination!

The Kazoo Spartan

azjerry
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U3 coming around

Since I posted the link to the uninstall, U3 has added some links on their site pointing to the uninstall along with notes that it's permanent.

OTOH, in this thread https://portableapps.com/node/2174 computechx has figured out how to capture the U3 update and reinstall U3 onto his Sandisk after running the uninstall. He can even edit the install, putting PStart into it.

Of course this doesn't help me with my Verbatim or Kingston USBs. The install cheerfully points out that it's not a SanDisk compatable drive and quits.

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