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Title says most of it. I have a Pixel 7 Pro and a Pixel Tablet. I just got a Crucial X10 4TB portable SSD, which advertises as compatible with Android. I have Solid Explorer installed, and when I plug the SSD into the tablet or phone, Solid Explorer sends me a toast saying it's preparing the USB drive. Except it never appears or enumerates. Solid Explorer can't see it, nor can Android Files. Neither recognize the existence of the drive. I can mount it on any of my Windows machines, as well as Chrome OS. (Interestingly, Chrome OS shows two devices on this drive, one called "USB Drive" which has no FS, and the other called "X10 Pro" that has all the files there. Not sure what's up with that, never seen it before).

I have installed the Paragon exFAT app and Total Commander, and that combination uniquely lets me interact with the drive, and only via Total Commander.

I read that Android 13 added exFAT support, and I've used exFAT USB flash drives on my Android devices before, so I am not sure what is going on with this.

I have a 2TB BeeDrive that I can connect to natively on Android and Windows without any utilities, and it is also formatted exFAT. What's going on here? Is the 4TB X10 too big or something?

Any help is appreciated.

**EDIT:**I realized that the X10 and the BeeDrive were different disk formats, BeeDrive is MBR and X10 is GPT formatted. Time to play with disk manager and see if that's the problem

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    Are you sure that the SSD gets enough power from the phone to operate correctly?
    – Robert
    Sep 23, 2023 at 21:06
  • Yep, tried via a powered hub as well. Turns out Crucial in their infinite wisdom had two partitions. The first, which Android attaches to by default, was only 15MB and had no file system or partition structure. I nuked it in diskpart and recreated the GPT record & one single partition, now it works
    – Chris
    Sep 23, 2023 at 21:37

1 Answer 1

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This was dumb. Crucial put a 15MB unformatted, locked partition at offset 1024k that has no partition/fs data. Android hooked that first, useless, partition and ignored the second. I went into diskpart and was able to rebuild with one partition

DISKPART> LIS DIS
  # My problematic drive is Disk 1
DISKPART> SEL DIS 1
DISKPART> LIS PAR
  # My main data partition & the volume are on Partition 2
DISKPART> SEL PAR 2
DISKPART> LIS VOL
  # Partition 2 is mounted at Volume 6
DISKPART> SEL VOL 6
DISKPART> DEL VOL
DISKPART> LIS PAR
  # After deleting the volume, diskpart got rid of the corresponding partition
  # If you still see your partition in this list, run the next step, otherwise skip
DISKPART> DEL PAR # SKIP if diskpart removed your partition for you
DISKPART> SEL PAR 1
DISKPART> DEL PAR OVERRIDE
DISKPART> CLE
DISKPART> CON GPT
DISKPART> CRE PAR
DISKPART> LIS PAR
  # There should only be one partition listed for the full drive size
DISKPART> SEL PAR 1
DISKPART> LIS VOL
  # You should see a volume with an * next to it, with a RAW FS and the size of your disk
  # If you see the volume but there is not a * you need to select it (replace 6 with your volume number)
DISKPART> SEL VOL 6
DISKPART> FOR FS=EXFAT LABEL="X10 Pro" QUICK
DISKPART> LIST VOL
  # The selected volume should now have a Label and an exFAT filesystem
DISKPART> ASS
  # This will assign a letter to the volume and mount it in Windows
DISKPART> LIS VOL
  # Verify that your new volume has a letter under the Ltr column. If so, done!
DISKPART> EXIT


**To verify correct partition setup**
DISKPART> LIS DIS
  # Note which number is assigned to your disk (2 in this example)
DISKPART> SEL DIS 2
DISKPART> LIS PAR
  # This should only have ONE partition, if it has more then something went wrong
DISKPART> SEL PAR 1
DISKPART> LIS VOL
  # Ensure that the selected volume (denoted by a *) has the expected Ltr, Label, FS, Type, and Size
DISKPART> EXIT

And that's it. Stupid formatting from the factory.

EDIT: This seems to completely break the Crucial Storage Executive program from recognizing this disk. My guess is that the micro "partition" causing problems was actually a chunk of metadata or memory-mapped interfaces for I/O with the control software.

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