How do I fix autoplay on Windows XP SP2?
I've newly upgraded to XP Pro/SP2 with all of the latest updates. The feature that always asks what I want to do when I insert removeable media (USB or ZIP disk) is frustrating and un-teachable. It either won't learn when I tell it to or the option isn't there.
My colleague Chris Buechler has certainly seen this one many a time, so I'll let him help you out here. Chris explains: "The owner of the company at my previous employer was a digital photography nut, and had this problem at least every other month or so!"
Windows contains a feature known as "autorun" that causes certain actions to be taken when you insert removable media. Unfortunately, Windows XP seems to like to repeatedly break this functionality on some systems. Luckily, there is an easy fix available from Microsoft. They provide a utility called "Autofix.exe", as described in this knowledge base article.
While the bottom of the above article claims this was fixed in XP Service Pack 2, we can attest that some of us have used this utility ourselves on SP2 to fix the exact problem you describe.
To download Autofix, go to Microsoft's download area, type
Then log off and log back onto your computer (restart it to be on the safe side) and it should work again.
This has worked numerous times for Chris. The only "gotcha" he's run into is forgetting to log off after running the utility, in which case the change does not take effect until you finally do remember to log out and log in again.
Alternatively, if you'd rather use something not from Microsoft, here are a couple of useful tools that can help you quickly fix the problem, both ingeniously called "Autoplay Repair":
That should get you back and working!
More Useful Windows PC Help Articles:
✔ What's the easiest way to speed up my Windows PC laptop?
My Dell Windows 7 laptop is starting to drive me crazy. It's so darn slow! I've had it a few years and I...✔ Can I force a Windows 7 OS system update?
Every so often Windows 7 pops up a window and tells me that there are updates. That's nice, but how can I force...✔ Fix Google Drive (Gdrive) no longer supported (out of date)?
I'm a big Google fan and have been using Google Drive for quite a while as a cloud storage device. It's a breeze,...✔ How do I open or unpack a RAR archive on my Windows PC?
I have some ".rar" files on my Windows 8 PC and am curious how to unpack them to see what's inside. From a...✔ How can I shrink my Windows 8 Desktop file icons?
I've figured out most things in the new Windows 8 interface, except I can't see how to easily reduce or shrink the file...
Let's stay in touch!
Sign up for my weekly AskDaveTaylor Newsletter and you'll receive even more tech and gadget help right to your inbox, along with exclusive news and industry updates. It's good stuff. I promise!
I do have a comment, now that you mention it!
Check This Out Too...
Look for Answers
All Our Categories
Apple iPad Help
Articles and Reviews
Auctions and Online Shopping
Blogs and Blogging
Building Web Site Traffic
Business and Management
Computer and Internet Basics
d) None of the Above
Google Gmail Help
Google Plus Help
Industry News and Trade Shows
iPhone and Cell Phone Help
iPod, Sony PSP and MP3 Player Help
Kindle Fire Help
Mac OS X Help
Pay Per Click (PPC) Advertising
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Shell Script Programming
Tech Support Video Help
The Writing Business
Twitter, LinkedIn and Social Network Help
Unix and Linux Help
Video Game Tips and Help
Windows PC Help
Find Me on Google+
ADT on G+