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Windows Vista says "you need to format the disk in drive" when I stick in my thumb drive

Posted on 2008-11-13
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Last Modified: 2012-05-05
Whenever I insert my thumb drive into Vista x64, it says you need to format the disk in drive J before you can use it.  I'm not sure why I need to format a thumb drive at all... it just works.  Nonetheless, I formatted it, but it still pops up that message.  How can I turn off this message?
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Question by:JoeFletcher
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by:97WideGlide
ID: 22952563
Does the thumb drive work on vista x64 after formatting ?  Does it work on other operating systems ?

Could be that Vista x64 doesn't have drivers compatible with your thumb drive loaded.
Could be that thumb drive is just formatted in filesystem which Vista x64 doesn't understand.
Could be that thumb drive is broken.

Can you post more information regarding where and when you get the format message and where and when the thumb drive "just works"?
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22952860
> Does the thumb drive work on vista x64 after formatting ?  Does it work on other operating systems ?
It works on both xp and vista

>Could be that Vista x64 doesn't have drivers compatible with your thumb drive loaded.
don't know. how would I check?

>Could be that thumb drive is just formatted in filesystem which Vista x64 doesn't understand.
I used vista to format it. I chose Fat?? which was the default.

>Could be that thumb drive is broken.
Haven't had a problem on any computer yet, so no as far as I can tell.
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by:97WideGlide
ID: 22952905
So, vista says you need to format ...  but you really don't ?  It works just fine without formatting ?
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22953247
I stick in the thumb drive, it says " you need to format it before you can use it". so i format it.  done.  then I take out the thumb drive, stick it back in, and the same message appears.  all the while, whether I format it or not does not matter... it works whether i format it or not.  but the annoying message pops up every time.
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22954341
When you remove the thumbdrive from the computer do you go down to the system tray and stop the USB device before unplugging it?
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22954844
nope
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22954945
Ok, that could be part of your problem. When you remove a USB device from moder OSes you aren't just supposed to yank it out, you have to "stop" the device first.

When the device is plugged in you should see an icon like the image below. Right clicking on that and choosing "Safely Remove Hardware" will allow you to "stop" the device and remove it safely. If you don't do it this way then Windows may detect it as corrupt.

So...

1) Plug in the drive
2) Format it
3) Wait a minute
4) Safely Remove it

Then plug it back in and see if it does the same thing. If it does post the EXACT error message for us.
SafelyRemoveHardware1.jpg
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22954947
One more screen shot...
SafelyRemoveHardware2.jpg
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22955989
Thanks for those screenshots and tips, but that still didn't work.  I did exactly as you prescribed, but same problem. :(
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22956007
Hmm...

What is the content of the error message EXACTLY?
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22956111
see this screenshot

Capture.JPG
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by:dfxdeimos
ID: 22956139
Ok, choose "Cancel" and do the following...

1) Click Start
2) Right click on "Computer"
3) Choose "Manage"
4) Expand "Disk Management"

Inside of there you should see the device (listed along with your hard drives).

Can you post a screen shot of that area?
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22956174
here you go
Capture.JPG
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dfxdeimos earned 1500 total points
ID: 22956228
So, the "TRAVELDRIVE" is your thumb drive I assume.

So....

Down on the bottom you see "Disk 1". To the right of that is the area that says "979 MB NTFS....." I want you to right click in there and "Delete Partition". Once that is deleted right click in the same area and choose "Create Partition". When it asks you how you want to format it choose "FAT32" with a quick format.

Then repost a screen shot from that same area.
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22956468
There wasn't the option to Delete Partition (it was greyed out).  So, I skipped that and formatted it as FAT32, and there was one change from my previous attempts in that it popped autoplay options of either opening the folder or using ReadyBoost.

However, after removing the thumb drive and re-inserting, the same problem remains.
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by:97WideGlide
ID: 22956921
This doesn't make sense.

Are you sure the format went through successfully ?  You said you formatted using FAT but the screenshot shows the drive is using NTFS.
Please carefully confirm that the format is completing.  Do you get a "format complete" message ?  Also, some USB devices have a toggle switch which makes them write protected.  Please make sure that the disk is not write protected.  If you can't tell which setting is write protected, toggle it and try to format.

Next questions.  

- How are you confirming that the drive is working ?  
- Have you copied files to and from the drive ?  
- Can you delete files off of the drive ?  
- What happens if you run a scandisk on the drive ?
- What hapens if you run defrag on the drive ?

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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22977105
Sorry guys, I'm giving up. I followed the instructions and for whatever reason they aren't working, so at this point I'll just accept that I have to just have to hit the cancel button whenever I insert the thumb drive.
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22977128
closing
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Author Closing Comment

by:JoeFletcher
ID: 31516486
I'm sure these were the right steps to take... it just didn't solve my issue. :(
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Expert Comment

by:97WideGlide
ID: 22978810
your problem is that you think you are formatting the drive but you arent.
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by:JoeFletcher
ID: 22986290
how do you figure? I click format and it goes through the process.
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Expert Comment

by:spinlooproll
ID: 24642576
That is not the solution.
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