How do I make a hacked usb usable?

I searched EE for a solution, but didn't find anything.  I bought a USB thumbdrive for very little that purported to be large capacity.  I figured I could lose a little cash if it turned out not to be true (they said it was a 1tb usb2 stick).  It turns out that on closer inspection the stick has an actual capacity of 8gb.  Anything written to the stick above 6.2gb shows up as lost or corrupted.  I would like to be able to use this stick.  Does anyone have some steps to follow that will make this hacked USB stick usable?

I tried the steps here, which seem like they would work - only one problem the udtools and iflash database referred to are bad links.  I was able to workaround the iflash problem but have been unable to find a download of udtools.

If you have an alternate solution I am open to it.
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Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideAsked:
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Did you, can you, format the stick as NTFS. That might give you more capacity (if there is a grain of truth in the advertising). Otherwise it may just be a dud.
Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVEDeveloperCommented:
Hi Tom,

I test all flash memory cards/drives/sticks with H2testw:

Here's what its output looks like when the drive is clean:

Test finished without errors.
You can now delete the test files *.h2w or verify them again.
Writing speed: 40.1 MByte/s
Reading speed: 76.6 MByte/s
H2testw v1.4

Here's its output when it finds a problem (this was a 4GB card with some bad memory):

The media is likely to be defective.
3.8 GByte OK (8093404 sectors)
146 KByte DATA LOST (292 sectors)
Details:139.5 KByte overwritten (279 sectors)
2.5 KByte slightly changed (< 8 bit/sector, 5 sectors)
4 KByte corrupted (8 sectors)
93.5 KByte aliased memory (187 sectors)
First error at offset: 0x000000007707a408
Expected: 0x7707a406f9729c11
Found: 0xf907a406f932b511
Writing speed: 898 KByte/s
Reading speed: 4.91 MByte/s
H2testw v1.4

Here's an example of another bad one (this was a fake/counterfeit 32GB card):

The media is likely to be defective.
230.4 MByte OK (471942 sectors)
31.0 GByte DATA LOST (65029242 sectors)
Details:738.3 MByte overwritten (1512137 sectors)
0 KByte slightly changed (< 8 bit/sector, 0 sectors)
30.2 GByte corrupted (63517105 sectors)
738.3 MByte aliased memory (1512137 sectors)
First error at offset: 0x0000000001410008
Expected: 0x0141000012cf0011
Found: 0x0141000012c40011
Writing speed: 3.81 MByte/s
Reading speed: 3.74 MByte/s
H2testw v1.4

Sounds as if yours is in the last category and I'm not aware of any way to fix it. Besides, if it's really just an 8GB card, then it's worth $5 in today's market:

My advice is to deep-six it and not spend any time on it — spend 5 bucks instead. :)  Regards, Joe

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Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideAuthor Commented:
Thanks joe.  I was hoping to at least gain use of it.  I have 3 of them that I bought at the same time and they are all the same - hacked to look like they have more storage.  I have already tried h2testw.  There are some guides to unhacking a drive, but almost all of them refer to tools that are no longer available or only work on XP (which I could deal with if they were available).  I may end up just giving up on this one, but I just hate getting nothing out of this.  I suppose I have already spent more (in terms of time) attempting to fix this than I would in buying a real drive.
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Joe Winograd, Fellow&MVEDeveloperCommented:
> I just hate getting nothing out of this.

I hear you on that!

> I suppose I have already spent more (in terms of time) attempting to fix this than I would in buying a real drive.

I agree. Even at $15 for three of them, I'm sure your time is worth more than that — aggravating as it is to give up on them.
if you do want to spend more time on it you may want to try a google search for "fix a fake usb drive" i'm a bit affraid to post links to ebay or downloads since i'm not sure if what is there is legit at all.
Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideAuthor Commented:
Thanks tried all avenues of search before posting here.  I am usually the one that gets irked when people ask here without first doing a thorough search for an answer.

I think Joe is right - tone to bite the bullet and buy a few real sticks.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
I paid (a few years ago) a pile of money to get a Kingston 64 Gb USB key. I liked it, but it eventually developed a fault. I know use smaller cheaper (but brand name) 8 and 16GB USB keys and view them as disposable.

If I want space, I have a 1TB USB drive that has been flawless
☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
You can tweak it back again by altering the media descriptors using Partition Magic or similar tools but the bad news is that these are generally faulty chipsets in the first place with memory errors rejected by the manufacturers and then sold on via various auction sites - often in bulk with the end purchaser acting as a "retailer"  - usually with their accounts closed down after a month or two once the buyers realise what they've got and start complaining.  Most often the actual surrounds of the chips are counterfeit and when compared with a genuine product (with a realistic capacity) the differences are obvious.

H2TestW that Joe suggests is a great tool to verify the capacity but won't change the way the drive reports it's size to Windows.

Even if you do reset the media descriptors, because the chips are invariably faulty they'll report bad sectors which given they are solid state is clearly bad news - you shouldn't really even think of using them for real data storage, more as an interesting "project" in exploring what can be done to make storage media misreport its identity.

USB scams like this still seem very common as people go for the "too good to be true" bargains.  With 1TB USB sticks retailing at around $800 at the moment it does seem strange that taking a chance at buying one for $40 and finding it's fake is so shocking.

BTW udtools for XP as requested
Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideAuthor Commented:
I wasn't really shocked, just disappointed.  I had hoped I could at least use the thing.  Thanks.
Thomas Zucker-ScharffSolution GuideAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the input.  I use many of the tools already, but thought this was the best way to close this question.
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