How to reformat USB Recovery Drive

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  1. Posts : 27
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro
       #1

    How to reformat USB Recovery Drive


    I used the "Create recovery drive" tool in Windows 10 to create a recovery drive on a USB stick. I no longer need that recovery drive and would like to use the USB stick for other things. I have been unable to erase or reformat the USB drive. I keep getting a write protection error. I have followed various instructions to use diskpart to remove the write protection as well as editing registry entries to no avail. Is their some way to use this USB drive for something else or is the only choice to throw it away?
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 39,956
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       #2

    Open administrative command prompt and type or copy and paste:

    (comments are in parenthesis)

    diskpart
    list disk
    detail disk
    (look for the disk # for the flash drive)
    select disk #
    (replace # with the disk # for the flash drive)
    clean
    (this will clean the disk # that was selected)
    create part pri
    format fs=fat32 quick
    active
    exit
    exit
      My Computer


  3. Posts : 12,421
    Win10 Version 21H2 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro
       #3

    wags1 said:
    Is their some way to use this USB drive for something else or is the only choice to throw it away?
    I've had success in reusing the drive for a later Version, let Windows deal with it.
      My Computers


  4. Posts : 27
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #4

    zbook said:
    Open administrative command prompt and type or copy and paste:

    (comments are in parenthesis)

    diskpart
    list disk
    detail disk
    (look for the disk # for the flash drive)
    select disk #
    (replace # with the disk # for the flash drive)
    clean
    (this will clean the disk # that was selected)
    create part pri
    format fs=fat32 quick
    active
    exit
    exit
    Thanks for the quick reply. I have tried that before but always get an error when I run the clean command. I tried it again just now and here is what I get:

    How to reformat USB Recovery Drive-image.png
      My Computer


  5. Posts : 27
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #5

    Berton said:
    I've had success in reusing the drive for a later Version, let Windows deal with it.
    I don't need it as a recovery drive and currently it is useless to me because it is set as read only. All I want to do is make it read/write so I can format it and use it as a regular USB drive. So far I have been striking out with everything I've tried.
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 24,562
    10 Home x64 (21H2) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       #6

    wags1 said:
    I don't need it as a recovery drive and currently it is useless to me because it is set as read only. All I want to do is make it read/write so I can format it and use it as a regular USB drive. So far I have been striking out with everything I've tried.
    Your screenshot of DETAIL DISK says:
    Current Read-only State : Yes

    Try selecting the usb disk then use the Diskpart command:
    ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY

    Then you should be able to clean it. If not, it may mean the usb is dying and has gone read-only so that you could at least be able to recover data from it.
      My Computers


  7. Posts : 39,956
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       #7

    Part of the commands and results were missing from the image.

    Open adminstrative command prompt and type or copy and paste:
    diskpart
    list disk
    select disk #
    (replace # with the disk number for the flash drive)
    attributes disk clear readonly
    exit


    If the above steps work then you are set.
    If the above steps fail then view this link for additional troubleshooting steps:
    How to Format Read-only USB Drive Successfully?
      My Computer


  8. Posts : 27
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #8

    Bree said:
    Your screenshot of DETAIL DISK says:
    Current Read-only State : Yes
    Try selecting the usb disk then use the Diskpart command:
    ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY

    Then you should be able to clean it. If not, it may mean the usb is dying and has gone read-only so that you could at least be able to recover data from it.
    Thanks. Yes I have issued the ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY command and it indicates that it completes but the current read only state never changes. I've tried it many times. Probably going to just give up and toss it....they are cheap enough these days. You can see it in the screen shot here -
    How to reformat USB Recovery Drive-image.png
      My Computer


  9. Posts : 27
    64-bit Windows 10 Pro
    Thread Starter
       #9

    zbook said:
    Part of the commands and results were missing from the image.

    Open adminstrative command prompt and type or copy and paste:
    diskpart
    list disk
    select disk #
    (replace # with the disk number for the flash drive)
    attributes disk clear readonly
    exit


    If the above steps work then you are set.
    If the above steps fail then view this link for additional troubleshooting steps:
    How to Format Read-only USB Drive Successfully?
    Thanks again for helping. Yes, I've found and tried those instructions prior to posting. Nothing seems to work. It is ridiculous that Windows basically trashes a perfectly good USB stick when it creates a recovery disk. Their should be a way to clear it off so you can use it again but I guess not. Probably going to just give up and toss it....they are cheap enough these days.
      My Computer


  10. Posts : 39,956
    windows 10 professional version 1607 build 14393.969 64 bit
       #10

    Any chance that there is a hidden switch on the flash drive?
    See this link with image:
    [2017] Fix Diskpart failed to clear disk attributes - EaseUS

    Sorry if this does not fix it as I'm not aware of any other troubleshooting steps.
      My Computer


 

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