Formatting a USB Pen Drive

  Jackcoms 10:15 11 Jun 05

Can I format a USB pen drive (like formatting a floppy) so that it is wiped clean?

If I do format it, can I then continue to use it in exactly the same way as if it was straight out of the box?

  GANDALF <|:-)> 10:22 11 Jun 05

Yes, right click the drive in my computer and select format. This will erase all info and you can start recording again. Of course you can just delete the data on the pen rather than a format.


  Jackcoms 10:29 11 Jun 05

Thanks a lot.

Green tick for this one!

  bremner 10:42 11 Jun 05

Sorry to disappoint you but formatting does not wipe the data on a thumb drive. You might just as well delete the files in a Windows view.

  Jackcoms 10:59 11 Jun 05

Would you care to elaborate?

You've just contradicted the response from GANDALF <|:-)>

  bremner 11:17 11 Jun 05

Formatting does not remove the data. It simply rewrites the system area leaving the data untouched but invisble in the normal dos/windows view.

Formatting is great for everyday use if you just want to start again and do not want to completely remove any trace of the data that is on the drive.

Only the unconditional switch "format /u" that can be applied to a floppy disk overwrites the data.

The /u switch does not work on USB drives or hard drive. Their can only be overwritten with a program designed to do so.

  Jackcoms 12:48 11 Jun 05

"Their can only be overwritten with a program designed to do so".

And are such programs available as freeware?

Alternatively, let me re-phrase my original question.

If I format my 128mb pen drive, which "re-writes the system area", will I then have the original 128mb (roughly) available for re-use?

  bremner 12:52 11 Jun 05

Yes you will but you would also exactly the same by simply deleting the files.

Heres an example of whats available. click here

As I have said if what you have on the thumb drive is not sensitive then normal deleting is all you need to do. The existing data will be overwritten as you save new files to the drive.

  TomJerry 12:52 11 Jun 05

for your question, "free space for reuse", the answer is YES

for bremner's observation, "get ride of evidence for naughty files on it", the answer is NO

  rawprawn 14:48 11 Jun 05

Hi Craig
Clean Disk Security will completely wipe it, but it is not free.There are not many programs that will wipe Pen drives.

  Jackcoms 16:02 11 Jun 05

Thanks to all.

This thread went round in circles somewhat, but you've now given me the info I need.

This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

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