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Guide: How to format a locked USB drive

If your USB drive has write protection, you may not be able to format or format your folders. Below we will look at some methods to remove write protection from our USB to Windows and Mac. However, there is always the possibility that our USB may malfunction or be locked with some security software, making the following actions impossible.

1st way using Diskpart (Windows)

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1 - Change the position of the USB switch. If your USB drive has an external write protection switch, it may be in the wrong position (locked). Try switching the switch before proceeding to the next steps.

  • Some USBs may be locked with some security software that prevents changes to folders and files. In this case, you will not be able to remove the write protection from USB.

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2 - Insert the USB into the corresponding port. You can use any port available on your PC.

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3 - Right click on the start menu. It is located at the bottom left of your screen and displays the menu.

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4 - Tap Run. It is at the bottom of the list that appears after right-clicking on the start menu. This option opens in a new window.

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5 - Type diskpart and press enter. This is how the command line is displayed.

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6 - Type list disk and press enter. A list of all disks included with your USB drive will appear. Each disk is labeled "Disk" and each number is unique.

  • You will be able to recognize your USB from the capacity displayed under “Size”. For example, if your USB drive has 32 GB of space it should indicate the appropriate size.

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7 - Type select disk #and press enter. Replace # with your USB number (eg "select disk 3"). This action selects the USB drive.

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8 - Type attributes disk clear readonly and press enter. This will remove the write protection from your USB drive.

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9 - Type chub and press enter. This will remove the data from USB. Once that happens, you'll be able to configure it for use.

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10 - Type create partition primary and press enter. This will create a partition on the USB drive.

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11 - Type format fs = fat32 ή format fs = ntfs and press enter. This is how you configure your USB drive so that it can be recognized by any operating system. If its capacity is less than 32 GB type “format fs = fat32”. If larger, type "format fs = ntfs".

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12 - Type exit and press enter. This command returns you to the original command line location. Your USB is now available for data storage and other uses.

2nd way through Registry (Windows)

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1 - Change the position of the USB switch. If your USB drive has an external write protection switch, it may be in the wrong position (locked). Try switching the switch before proceeding to the next steps.

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2 - Open Windows Registry Editor on your PC. Here's how:

  • Press the Windows key and S at the same time to open the search bar.
  • Type regedit in the search field.
  • Click on it registry Editor in the results.
  • press Yes to open its window.

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3 - Navigate to the folder named Control. Follow the steps below to access the Control folder of the registry. There you will find folders and other folders.

  • Click the folder HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE.
  • Then click on the folder SYSTEM.
  • Immediately click on the folder CurrentControlSet.
  • Finally, click on the folder Control.

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4 - Click the folder StorageDevicePolicies (if exists). If you see this folder on the left side of your screen (under the "Control" folder), double-click to display its contents in the right panel. If you do not see this folder, follow these steps to create it:

  • Right-click on the blank area of ​​the right panel to open the menu.
  • Select New and after Key in the menu.
  • Type StorageDevicePolicies and click on the empty area again to save the new key.
  • Click on it StorageDevicePolicies in the left panel to open it.
  • Right-click in the blank area of ​​the right panel and select New> DWORD.
  • Type WriteProtect and click anywhere to save the DWORD.

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5 - Double click on WriteProtect of the right column. A new window will appear.

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6 - Type "0" as Value Data and click OK. Press zero without quotation marks.

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7 - Close Registry Editor and restart your PC. Changes you make to Registry Editor usually require a restart to work.

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8 - Connect your USB drive and open File Explorer. You can open the file explorer by pressing Windows and E at the same time or right-clicking on the start menu and selecting File Explorer.

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9 - Right click on the USB drive and select Format. The disk erase and formatting options will be displayed.

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10 - Select your preferences and press Start. This will erase the contents of the USB drive and make it ready for use.

3rd Way Using Disk Utility (Mac OS X)

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1 - Change the position of the USB switch. If your USB drive has an external write protection switch, it may be in the wrong position (locked). Try switching the switch before proceeding to the next steps.

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2 - Connect your USB drive to the corresponding Mac port.

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3 - Open the search. It is the first dock icon, usually located at the bottom of the screen.

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4 - Click the Applications folder. It is located on the left panel. After you click, icons will appear in the right panel.

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5 - Double-click the Utilities folder. Located on the right panel.

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6 - Double-click Disk Utility. This tool is used to format discs.

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7 - Select your USB in the left panel. This will display information in the right panel.

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8 - Click Erase on the right panel. It is at the top of the panel.

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9 - Enter a name for USB (optional). You can keep the default option if you wish.

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10 - Select the file format type from the "Format" menu. If you want your USB drive to be compatible with Windows and Mac at the same time, select MS-DOS (FAT) for USB with capacity less than 32 GB or ExFat if it has more space.

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11 - Click the Erase button. You will find it in the lower right corner of your window. The Poppy will format your disk and change permissions to "read" and "write".

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