One of the things that continue to puzzle me is why ejecting a USB drive remains such a labor intensive affair, even on Windows 7.
Luckily, this software can spare you ever having to go hunting for the “safely remove hardware” icon in the system tray ever again.
ProEject is a small, free program that can safely eject mounted drives at the press of a button.
It will clear the registry and folders of traces that USB drives can leave behind, such as the MRU (most recently used) sections of the Windows Registry, entries created in the “Run on Startup” key, shortcuts created in the SendTo, Recent, Quick Launch, Pinned (for Windows 7) and the Windows Firewall.
It can also be placed and run from the same drive that you want to eject, in order to automatically eject the drive without a lot of messing around.
- Can utilize a host of external tools: including AutoStart.exe, DevEject.exe, EjectMedia.exe, RemoveDrive.exe, USB_Disk_Eject.exe, USBDeview.exe, TrueCrypt.exe (to auto detect and dismount a TrueCrypt drive, Unlocker.exe, and Handle.exe). See the readme in the ProEject folder.
- Cleans the registry and hard drive: of traces leftover by your ejected USB volume.
- Nice little dialog: that displays all connected drives (see screenshot above). Much better than the standard context menu you get from the Windows default safe eject.
- Can be run from the USB drive: to eject it, making it easy to eject your USB with ProEject from wherever you might be using it.
- Command line: usage is supported.
- Doesn’t seem to integrate with Unlocker: to automatically find and remove locking handles, despite the claim in the readme that it does (I tried many times, including setting both to run as administrator, etc)
- Insists on minimizing to the system tray: i.e. it doesn’t always re-appear when you double click the ProEjecticon pinned in the taskbar or the desktop (even when you uncheck ‘display tray icon when in ProEject mode). This might seem nitpicky, but I would like to avoid hunting in the system tray whenever I need to eject a USB drive. Also, once a drive is ejected, the ProEject dialog can sometimes not refresh, even when the user attempts to do so manually.
- Tends to trigger security software: partially because of what it does. I expect to get lots of comments/emails from freaked readers, but this software has an extremely good VirusTotal profile (see here; only 4/43 flag as positive, which is a very good result).
The verdict: a great program; I love that it can work with other programs and utilize them as plugins. It does feel like beta software; it needs a few quirks ironed out and better documentation. However, it is an exciting tool and I am looking to future versions with anticipation.
Version Tested: 22.214.171.124
Go to the program home page to download the latest version (approx 473K).