Safely remove USB hardware icon missing from taskbar


We need to follow “Safely remove hardware” device drive routine while trying to unplug a USB device from the computer. It can really annoying, when you are looking for safely remove hardware icon on the taskbar but it is nowhere to be seen. First you need to find that missing icon or use alternative procedure to open safely remove hardware settings window.

Direct command to open Safely Remove Hardware window

usbdrive1. Click on Start > Run to see run box on the screen.
2. Type or paste the command:
RunDll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll
3. Click OK to see “Safely remove hardware” settings window.

Now you can proceed with standard procedure to safely remove connected USB drive. No more missing icon, isn’t it?

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  1. This did not work. I get a message that a program is still using the USB drive, when there are no programs running (at least none on the task bar).
    310 821-3081

  2. How does this procedure solve the problem of the missing icon??

  3. It didn’t work for me either. It said the USB devices were not removable…! Obviously this is why the “safely remove” icon is missing – Windows doesn’t think there is anything to remove

    My computer: Win7pro64
    Possibly implicated?: Acronis True Image Home 2011

  4. It let me see the “Safely Remove Hardware” but it did not show any devices on there and my iPod was plugged in. It also did not appear on my taskbar.

  5. Mostafa Salem says:

    I did what you recommanded equipped with windows 7 64 Bit. It did not work. Igot “the segat free agent usb device is not removable and can not be rejected or unplugged”Is it because I did not change the 32 by 64? in the following batch RunDll32.exe shell32.dll,Control_RunDLL hotplug.dll

  6. Judy Meyers says:

    I have typed into the search bar RunDllre.exe etc. but nothing was found on my computer.

  7. Typed in the command on my old Window ME desktop and worked like a charm. THANKS so much for having this posted!! Yes, still using my Windows ME as a backup from time to time! HA

  8. This does nothing to fix the missing icon. If I just want to remove the device, it is much easier to open Computer/My Computer and right click on the device and choose eject. This does, as noted above by Camila, open the Safely Remove Hardware dialogue window, but does not restore the missing icon from the notifications area.

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