Shortcut Methods To Delete Shortcut Virus From USB in Windows 7/8/10

Shortcut viruses are widespread and their issues have always been annoying to the regular Windows users. As USB drives are the most easiest and the fastest way to exchange data, they are adopted by most of us. But their hidden viruses are often overlooked. Consider the three scenarios – Trying to install something from the web, inserting your pen drive in your friend’s system or inserting your friend’s pen drive in your system. If any one of the entity in these scenarios is affected by a virus, the chances that the whole system may crash is quite high. Nowadays, Shortcut virus is found to have disturbed many and if you too are an affected victim, then this article can help you out.

Also See: – Format USB via Comand Prompt

Let me give you a quick overview of what the Shortcut virus is.

It is responsible for creating a shortcut for all files and folders present in the system and blocks the original ones.  This type of malware later flushes off the original data and makes them completely inaccessible. There are also events when the user’s credentials were exposed to the virus. They can either affect the system internally by affecting the drives and folders, or can affect the external storage devices connected to the system.

virus affected files

If you see the above image, all files appear as a Shortcut.

This article will navigate you through the methods that can completely remove the shortcut viruses from USB Flash drives or pen drives in the Windows 10 system.

METHOD 1 : By Making Use Of Windows Commands

The shortcut viruses act on the attributes of files and modifies them . They move the original files to a location which cannot be easily detected. Following certain windows commands can help to delete such viruses.

  • Insert your pen drive into the slot provided and check if it is detected in your PC. Also note the drive letter. In my case, it is detected in the F: drive.

drive letter-find

  • Press the Windows Key + X and choose the option Command Prompt( Admin) to open the command Prompt in the Administrator mode.

opening cmd admin mode

  • Once the window opens up, type the below given command.

ATTRIB ‐H ‐R ‐S /S /D F:*.*

Replace F: in the above command with the drive letter with which your pen drive is associated.

The other attributes in the command denotes :

-R  : You need to recreate the original files from it’s shortcut.

-S  : Re-include the current files in the USB drive to the system.


command for resolving virus

Now your Shortcut files will be again gets converted to normal files. Delete unknown files from your pen drive after command process completes. After that its recommended to copy all useful files from USB to any folder on your PC and then format the USB.


  • Open the affected folder to find the virus removed.

original files

The original files are now recovered

METHOD 2: Using Batch Files To Remove Shortcut Virus

Batch files have a pre-written program present in it that can help removing shortcut viruses when they are executed.

  • Insert your pen drive/ USB Flash drive into it’s slot and check if it is detected in your PC.

detected drive

  • Open up the Notepad by searching for it in the Search bar at the bottom of your desktop.

opening notepad

  • Type the below given command in it.

@echo off
attrib ‐h ‐s ‐r ‐a /s /d F:*.*
@echo complete

notepad command

  • Save the file as shortcutvirusremover.bat and change the file type as All files as shown in the screenshot below.

saving notepad file

  • Now right click on the file just saved, and Run it in Administrator mode .

batch file run as administrator

  • This can automatically delete all the shortcut viruses detected on the external devices.

Thats it. Try the above given methods to solve the Shortcut virus issue. Hope you found this article useful.


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