Did you ever forget your USB stick at work, and then realized at home that you badly needed some files on it? If so, then this free tool is for you. pcwUnstick is a Visual Basic script from PC WELT, a German computer magazine. The script opens a pop up window whenever you shut down your PC if a USB-stick is still plugged-in. It works with Firewire hard disks too.

Latest posts by Michael Pietroforte (see all)

The installation instruction at their web site is in German. Basically, you just have to add the script to your logoff scripts with the group policy editor gpedit.msc. I wrote down below a detailed instruction in English. Looks pretty complicated, but it should only take you a minute or so.

  1. Download pcwUnstick.
  2. Start the exe file.
  3. pcUnstickA popup window informs you that there's no guarantee that the script will work properly. You can contact the author of the program, if you have problems with it. I used this script for a while and it worked fine.
  4. pcwUnstickWinZip Self-Exractor will start then. Click on "Extrahieren". The uncompressed script will be copied to C:\pcwelt. You can then close WinZip.
  5. Click on Windows Start Button, then run, then type gpedit.msc
  6. Go to User Configuration->Windows Settings->Scripts
  7. Double click on "Logoff".
  8. Click on "Show files". The folder, where your local logoff scripts are stored, will open.
  9. Drag and drop the pcwUnstick.vbs from C:\pcwelt to this folder. You can close the folder now.
  10. pcwUnstickClick on "Add" in the Logoff Properties Windows, browse for pcwUnstick.vbs and click OK.

If you are not the only one in your company, who forgets his USB-stick every now and then, you could add this logon script to all your company's PCs using Group Polices. I didn't try this though.

  1. Sanja 18 years ago

    #3 resuires admin privileges.95% of those using USB sticks at work don’t have them.Better alternative is to use small program that runs in background and monitors for the beginning of the shutdown process. It can be put in the user’s startup folder.

  2. Sanja 18 years ago

    Sorry for typo. Should be "#5 requires"

  3. David 17 years ago

    Just keep it on your keychain, then you can’t leave without it.  You can’t start your car without your keys.

  4. David, that might be the American solution for this problem. In other parts of the world many people use public transportation to go to work. 😉

  5. frank 17 years ago

    well, then they can put it in their housekey key chain.

  6. frank, you really think that this is a good idea? You will end up before you door without house key because you forgot your usb-stick at work. Better let your house key in your briefcase.

  7. Bill 17 years ago

    Just attach it to your keys… It is pretty hard to leave without those.

  8. Bill, great idea! This way you’ll forget your keys and your USB stick at work. 😉

  9. Theresa 17 years ago

    Has anybody tried this in Windows 98 or 98SE? My old love is getting cranky, and I’m a little hesitant to download anything that doesn’t specifically say anything about systems…
    Thank you

  10. Baz 16 years ago

    I have a larger Seagate drive so who cares about car, house or whatever keys, its a cool script and those who dont need it dont need to make comments about why they dont forget there usb drives! good on them, WHO CARES?

  11. Nero 16 years ago

    Is there a way to put this script on the USB drive itself and not on the host computer? Thanks

  12. Nero, this script changes registry settings, if I remember it right. So I think you have to run it on every computer where you want to use it.

  13. Casey 16 years ago

    I really need this, but when I click on the download link, the first step, I get a weird screen.
    It’s and error screen that is yellow and there is a bunch of stuff about java. Is anybody else having something similar to this, or am I just doing something wrong?

  14. Casey, sorry for my late reply. The original download link doesn’t work anymore. I just uploaded my version pcwUnstick now. I hope you forgot your memory stick not too often in the meantime. 😉

  15. Ria 14 years ago

    Doesn’t work for me. I add the .vbs file to the Logoff properties window, but at logoff, I get the error “failed to find file”. When I check again in the Logoff properties window, it is blank, and their is nothing in the folder (show files …).

    Any ideas?

  16. Ricky 13 years ago

    Hi, how about USB Alert??? simple and very effective for me!!! Good luck

  17. Ricky 13 years ago

    O o, forgot the link 🙂 http://www.usbalert.nl/

  18. Joe 13 years ago

    Is this one works for windows 7? it runs perfect for windows XP however everytime I test in windows 7 it says “line 63, cannot find file” I guess win7 do not have the file for sndrec32.exe?

    objWSH.Run “sndrec32.exe /play /close ” & sounddatei, 0, false

  19. SREEDHARAN 12 years ago

    I am not able to run gpedit.msc. I am using Windows 7. Please clarify as to how to open gpedit to make changes in the registry settings?

  20. bogo89 11 years ago

    pcwStick.vbs ;with chcecking existing sound file
    de: http://pastebin.com/MSRcLGft
    en: http://pastebin.com/Q1SiDhyu
    pl: http://pastebin.com/d9u30bpz

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