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can not format usb drive says write protected

Posted on 2016-07-15
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Last Modified: 2016-07-15
1) there is not a switch on the usb that is write protecting it
2) i have tried diskpart and removing the read only attribute this doesn't work
3) tried to format and this doesn't work

is there a tool out there that is free that will format this usb stick no questions asked?
if so can someone help me or show me how to smoke this usb that wants to stay write protected.
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Question by:bbimis
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LVL 37

Expert Comment

by:bbao
ID: 41712935
what's name and model of your USB stick? how many partitions are there on the USB drive?
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Assisted Solution

by:John Hurst
John Hurst earned 400 total points
ID: 41712943
Try removing the write protection in Regedit.

http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/how-to/storage/how-erase-write-protected-usb-drive-or-sd-card-summary-3633096/

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\StorageDevicePolicies

See if that allows you to format.
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Author Comment

by:bbimis
ID: 41712953
John thanks for that and I did try and and the value was already set to 0 :(
i thought i seem some utility that was used for the dell sticks that have windows on them that allows you to format them (not what i'm trying to do) but along the same lines
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Author Comment

by:bbimis
ID: 41712956
its a standard usb stick has no marking for name. and only one partition
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41712962
Get a cheap stick and try formatting it. The USB stick you have may have died.
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Accepted Solution

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Kimputer earned 400 total points
ID: 41712999
Probably, this USB stick is now a very light paperweight. There are some USB sticks that are prone to have this behaviour (write protected for no reason), and big companies like Transcend, actually have a tool to solve that. It just scans for the drive, identifies it, gets the newest firmware online (even if it was already the newest), rewrites the USB drive, and voila, it's working again (minus all your data, that's been deleted). But obviously, it will only scan it's own devices, and not some unbranded one.
Since yours is unmarked, you can try to identify the exact hardware id (device manager > disk drives > right mouse click on the usb drive > Properties > tab Details > dropdown: hardware ids
Then google if there's a program/fix for that device (probably not)
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Assisted Solution

by:Kaffiend
Kaffiend earned 800 total points
ID: 41713127
The USB drives from Dell that have the OS install media on them?

Yeah, a few generations ago you could have removed the write protection from these things.  It hasn't been possible for a while now.  Unless something has changed recently, it just can't be done.

Google it, you will find many people that have tried .....
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Assisted Solution

by:bbao
bbao earned 400 total points
ID: 41713149
if DISKPART can't erase the drive, I would double check the USB stick and see if any tiny physical RW/RO switch somewhere on the stick. one of my USB stick has such a switch.
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Author Closing Comment

by:bbimis
ID: 41713197
thanks for all the help!
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Expert Comment

by:John Hurst
ID: 41713200
You are very welcome and I was happy to help.
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Expert Comment

by:Thomas Zucker-Scharff
ID: 41713324
Linux is your friend for this.  Just boot to a linux distro format the drive in linux.  Plug the drive into a windows machine and it will ask to format.  The other way around is to use this adapter you can get off amazon to make it into a android readable drive (works with any USB), plug into your phone and format the stick.  Then plug into windows machine and it should either ask to format or be okay with it.
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