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32GB of sweet USB flash drive storage space just sits in your office drawer, ironically taking up space. Why? Because you can’t put anything else on it. It’s write protected and you can’t format the stupid thing! Or can you? We get a lot of people asking about formatting write protected USB flash drives.

First, make sure this is what you need to do. Are you sure you don’t just have a dead USB port Dead USB Port? Here's How to Diagnose and Fix It! Dead USB Port? Here's How to Diagnose and Fix It! When your USB port stopped working, did you just plug your device into another one? Well, you might need that port one day! The fix could be easy, so let's give it a try. Read More ? Maybe it’s just that your flash drive is corrupted How To Make Corrupt USB Jump Drives Work Again How To Make Corrupt USB Jump Drives Work Again Read More ?

We’re going to get to the bottom of this problem and either you’ll be stashing all your fresh Firefly fan fiction on that drive, so the boss doesn’t see it, or you’re going to be doing the Office Space dance on it in the parking lot. It’s one or the other today, baby! Let’s go.

First things first – can you remove the write protection? Let’s assume you’ve followed all the steps in our article on fixing write protection errors on a USB pen drive How To Fix Write Protection Errors On a USB Stick How To Fix Write Protection Errors On a USB Stick You've got your trusty USB flash drive plugged into your computer, and you go to copy some files to it. Then you get this - "The disk is write protected. Remove the write protection or... Read More . There’s still one thing we can try that was the victim of oversight in that article.

Remove Write Protection With Diskpart Command Line Utility

Click on your Start Menu and type cmd in the Search for programs and files field. It should show up at the top of your Start menu. Right-click on it and select Run as Administrator.

open-cmd-as-administrator

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You should now see the Command Line Utility, which looks like the following.

command-line-utility

Type in the command DISKPART and hit Enter. Diskpart is a disk-partitioning tool that is built into Windows and is accessible through the Command Line Utility. With it, we can change the values associated with your USB drive.

diskpart

Now type LIST DISK and hit Enter. You should see a table something like the one below. It shows two disks being available: the Hard Disk Drive (HDD) as Disk 0, and the USB flash drive as Disk 1. We know that the USB flash drive is Disk 1 because it is much smaller than Disk 0 at only 7441 MB versus 298 GB. Be very careful from here on out! You can see that if you start working with the wrong disk, things can get ugly quicker than when the lights come on at last call.

At this point, type SELECT DISK 1 and hit Enter. You’ll be rewarded with the knowledge that Disk 1 is now the selected disk. Type in ATTRIBUTES DISK, and Diskpart will tell you what you want to know about your flash drive. Most important is the first line Current Read-only State: Yes. This lets us know that, indeed, the flash drive is write protected.

To remove the write protection with Diskpart, type the command ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY. If it works, that will be confirmed by the line Disk attributes cleared successfully.

completed-diskpart-remove-readonly

Double-check this by trying to copy a small file to your USB drive. If it works, great. If you still get the write-protect error, it’s time to bring out the big guns. Software utilities.

Disk Formatting Test Method

The test bed for these utilities is a Windows 7 computer with a Kingston DataTraveler DT101 G2 8GB USB 2.0 drive.

kingston-dt101-8gb-usb-flash-drive

Before each test, the drive has a test file placed on it and the drive is write protected via the Diskpart tool. The USB drive is then removed from the computer and reinserted. This ensures that the computer is reading the most recent attributes. Skipping this step sometimes results in Windows Explorer not being able to see the drive.

The USB drive attributes are checked in Diskpart and an attempt is made to copy another test file to the USB drive. If the copy fails then it can be safely assumed that the write protection is working.

The formatting utility is then run on the test drive. If it ends with a success screen, then the USB drive is checked in Windows Explorer to see if the test file is still there. If the test file is gone, the utility is declared to have formatted the USB drive successful.

To see if the formatting removed the write protection, an attempt is made to copy the test file to the USB drive. If the file copies successfully, the write protection has been removed. If not, then the drive attributes are checked via the Diskpart tool to see if the drive is still write protected, and accessible by the computer.

We’ll only talk about the utilities that did work on this particular drive. Other formatting and USB drive utilities may work on your drive, especially if it is something provided by the maker of your drive. If the maker’s utility doesn’t work for you, consider going to the place where you bought it or contacting the maker. Many of them offer repair or replacement services.

USB Formatting Utilities

Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool

The Apacer USB 3.0 Repair tool has two functions – format and and restore. It’s no-frills.

apacer-usb-format

As you can imagine, format is intended to format the USB drive and restore is meant to make your USB flash drive work again. How the restore function works is by performing a low level format. That completely wipes your USB drive and restores it back to its factory default values.

apacer-usb-format-restore

The format did work on the test drive, however the write protection was still intact. The restore function also formatted the flash drive and renamed it PUBLIC, but still the write protection was intact.

apacer-usb-format-success

If neither of these functions works on your Apacer USB drive, Apacer does have a statement on their website asking you to contact, “…the authorized Apacer dealer or distributor that you original purchased the product to get replacement, if the flash drive still can not be repaired.”

Kingston Format Utility

As soon as the software was started, it identified the drive, and it’s current file system.

kingston-usb-format-utility

Very quickly, it worked, but still left the flash drive write protected. Like the Apacer tool, it changed the name of the drive as well, but to Kingston instead of Public. It wasn’t terribly surprising that it worked, with the test drive being a Kingston product.

The Takeaway

These two programs were the only ones that worked on formatting test drive, so they very well may work on your drive. However, the programs did not remove the write protection, which was what we really wanted to happen.

As was noted before, check the website of your USB flash drive manufacturer to see if they have a program that might help you, or a repair or replacement service. Remember to try all the steps mentioned in the fixing write protection errors on a USB pen drive How To Fix Write Protection Errors On a USB Stick How To Fix Write Protection Errors On a USB Stick You've got your trusty USB flash drive plugged into your computer, and you go to copy some files to it. Then you get this - "The disk is write protected. Remove the write protection or... Read More article as well as the instructions for changing attributes in Diskpart. If all of that doesn’t work, you might want to put on your stomping boots, do the Office Space dance on it, and head down to your local retailer to get a new one.

If you’ve found another way to format a write protected flash drive and remove the write protection, we’d love to read about it in the comments. After all, we’re all in this together.

Image Credits: Kingston Flash Drive via Amazon, Protected Shield, via Shutterstock, Hubble Image, via Wikimedia.

  1. blessed bweupe
    December 5, 2016 at 2:38 pm

    I tried everything but still

  2. golu tiwari
    December 3, 2016 at 6:23 am

    My hp32 gb pendrive is not formet from diskpart methods.
    i can't satisfied.

  3. jananda
    November 16, 2016 at 5:06 pm

    Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool restore mechanism worked for me. Thank you very much brother. it was really helpful.

  4. Monte
    November 11, 2016 at 2:25 am

    Thank you SOOOO much for this article!! I had recently purchased a 32GB USB3.0 flash drive and shortly after I put some files on it it went READ ONLY. I was ready to try the other utilities you mentioned, then I read further about checking out the mfr website - Sure enough, they had a utility to restore it to factory defaults. And it worked!!!! Out of all the articles out there, yours was the only article that suggested that. I would never have thought of it otherwise, and it likely would have gone in the trash (such a shame and a waste!) Thanks Again!!!

  5. Bunny
    October 23, 2016 at 4:46 pm

    the above process does not work
    if you have a proper way to remove write protect error from pen drive, so please upload it.
    "ATTRIBUTES DISK CLEAR READONLY".-- it never works.

  6. stanley
    October 2, 2016 at 5:56 am

    Stanley
    hi
    i was try every method Ive find in the net , but their doesn't work because the software which can format the USB memory's , its cant find a USB partition .
    pl z if you can solve my problem , give me your recommend.
    tanks

  7. Filippo
    September 30, 2016 at 6:32 pm

    Thank you so much! The repair tool from Apacer was the only tool in the world wide web that really worked for me (in restore mode).

    • Socrates C. Idanan II
      October 25, 2016 at 9:04 am

      it says device not found

  8. Karu
    September 8, 2016 at 12:51 pm

    It worked! Thanks

  9. Mari
    August 28, 2016 at 3:55 am

    When I tried the command prompt, it said "current read-only state: yes" but then it said, "read-only"no". So is my USB only partly write-protected? Why does it say "no" for the "read-only" instead of "yes"?

  10. Ahmed Ebrahem
    August 27, 2016 at 11:30 am

    thnx man the was so helpfull

  11. Joe Smith
    August 25, 2016 at 10:26 pm

    For months and a dozen or more utilities later, USB3.0 Repair fixed the detected, but non-functional 4GB flash drive from Verbatim "Store n Go". Now I can use it again for my backups!

  12. chirag
    August 15, 2016 at 4:13 pm

    not for me too

  13. qq
    August 10, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    thanks Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool did the trick!

  14. Pradip Nalwaya
    August 7, 2016 at 8:34 am

    it's amazing tools and cmd tricks. thanks for sharing.

  15. WF
    August 1, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    This was a lifesaver, thank you. I didn't even need admin privileges.

  16. Chathura Dalugoda
    July 22, 2016 at 5:30 pm

    worked Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool,used restore option ,but failed to restore ,unplug th usb reinserted ,then usb ask to format before used ,format it ,worked fine

  17. Pierre
    July 20, 2016 at 6:33 am

    This worked for me using windows 10.

    Go to "Device Manager". Scroll down the "Disk drives“ tab and right click on the USB flash drive's icon.

    Select the "Properties" option from the menu that appears and click on "Policies" tab from the Properties window. Select “Better performance" option button and then click OK.

    Now go to "This PC" and right click on the USB flash drive's icon. Select "Format" and click on the "Restore device defaults" button then click "Start" to start formatting.

    Wait a few seconds for format to finish. Go back to "Device Manager" to change back the "Policies" setting from the USB drive to "Quick removal".

    DONE!

    USB drive is back to FAT32 default setting and no more write protection.

    • Gregory
      July 21, 2016 at 12:32 pm

      Hi Pierre, Did not work at all.

    • Carmen
      August 1, 2016 at 3:59 pm

      Hi, Pierre! Didn't work for me either.

    • Nina
      September 7, 2016 at 1:49 pm

      This did not work. Flash drive is still write-protected.

    • Jay
      October 5, 2016 at 5:13 pm

      Thanks worked for my micro sd card

  18. fred stevens
    July 20, 2016 at 12:42 am

    in the image of the kingston format utility the title in the window is "Kigston" format utility. is this a fake or is there really that typo on a kingston product?

  19. Janith
    July 15, 2016 at 7:31 am

    Thanks.............It's Worked

  20. Daison
    June 23, 2016 at 6:42 am

    If you need to format the USB, choose exFAT instead of FAT32 after the FIRST METHOD shown above.

    • Guy McDowell
      June 24, 2016 at 4:06 pm

      Good to know! Thank you.

  21. Senthamizh
    June 13, 2016 at 4:28 am

    Thanks McDowell...

    • Guy McDowell
      June 15, 2016 at 1:59 pm

      You're welcome. :)

  22. Sagar
    June 12, 2016 at 8:21 am

    Thanks man that tool is worked

    • Guy McDowell
      June 15, 2016 at 1:59 pm

      Glad I could help.

  23. N E. NAARAYANAN
    June 9, 2016 at 2:10 pm

    Superb and very usefull . Thanks for ever

    • Guy McDowell
      June 15, 2016 at 1:40 pm

      You're welcome. I'm glad I could help.

  24. bodo
    June 2, 2016 at 6:07 am

    woy anjing, buat kesal orang aja lu

  25. Kingston User
    May 19, 2016 at 4:37 pm

    Hello, I'm having the same problem. Tried a lot of different options just to fix my Kingston Data Traveler 3.0 32 GB but still not resolved. I followed all the instructions, downloaded Apacer and Kingston, but it both failed to format the disk. Also tried fixing it using CMD but still no go. It says: Current Read Only State: Yes. Please can anyone help me? :( I've already spent how many hours trying to solve this and I haven't made any progress.

  26. Tengku Sulaiman
    April 28, 2016 at 9:17 am

    The Apacer 3.0 software worked on my Kingston DT100G3 32GB
    TQ Bro..

    • Guy McDowell
      May 20, 2016 at 7:57 pm

      Glad to hear. Apacer should bring me on as a product evangelist. ;)

  27. Zzyzx
    April 26, 2016 at 7:32 pm

    Sometimes, if the USB hardware is failing, the USB driver controller will put the drive in Write Protection mode to protect the data that exists on the drive so that it can to copied off the drive. The drive is likely unfixable.

  28. Rafael
    April 11, 2016 at 6:00 pm

    “Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool” worked for me flawlessly! Thanks!

    - Kingston 16GB USB 3.0

    • Guy McDowell
      April 13, 2016 at 12:33 am

      Glad we could help, Rafael.

      If I had a nickel for every time that Apacer tool helped someone...I'd have a lot of nickels.

  29. Raj Karn
    April 7, 2016 at 4:56 am

    in attribute disk
    current read- only state- yes and other all thing says no (after diskpart cleared successfully)

  30. Raj Karn
    April 7, 2016 at 4:54 am

    sir i have done all of the above step.. but it is still saying that this device is write protected
    i have done through cmd all thing finally it says that attribute cleared successfully but still say that message and when i goto regedit there is no storagedevicepolicies available.. sir please help me to solve this problem
    one more thing but when i goto cmd>diskpart>list disk>select disk 2(it is my usb)>attribute disk>

  31. Dalaverci`
    April 4, 2016 at 7:04 am

    Code is not working~!

  32. ramesh
    March 31, 2016 at 2:11 pm

    Read-only state : yes
    Read-only : no
    Same problem can help me

  33. Niko
    March 27, 2016 at 9:12 am

    Method with "Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool" helps me to restore SandiskUltra 16GB USB 3.0 stick. Big Thanks. :)

  34. RAVI
    March 27, 2016 at 4:50 am

    CODE IS NOT WORKING

  35. cnikesh33@yahoo.com
    March 17, 2016 at 4:43 pm

    in cmd i have a
    Read-only state : yes
    Read-only : no
    and i cant use it without formatting it can you help me please.
    Same problem can help me . please

    • shiv parate
      March 23, 2016 at 11:59 am

      tell me solution this problem

  36. evana
    March 4, 2016 at 2:00 pm

    i tried all the apps&procedure mentioned above but nothing work.............is there any other way to do it?????????.....help m plzzzz

  37. Rehan
    February 29, 2016 at 5:54 am

    It is not working?

    • Guy McDowell
      February 29, 2016 at 3:55 pm

      Which method?

  38. SUJAY VINCHURKAR
    February 27, 2016 at 6:15 am

    Right-click the message that did not put a pin drive that comes format Warning . what do i do
    ? thanks

    • Guy McDowell
      February 29, 2016 at 3:55 pm

      I'm sorry, I'm not sure what you mean. Can you give me more details?

  39. Jack
    February 21, 2016 at 2:08 pm

    MR.McDowell
    in cmd i have a
    Read-only state : yes
    Read-only : no
    and i cant use it without formatting it can you help me please.

  40. umar
    February 12, 2016 at 10:47 am

    Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou ,…Guy McDowel

    • Guy McDowell
      February 17, 2016 at 8:42 pm

      You're very welcome.

  41. Abdulrahman
    February 8, 2016 at 3:55 pm

    Thanks a lot. it realy halped me.

    • Guy McDowell
      February 17, 2016 at 8:42 pm

      My pleasure.

  42. Noman Hassan Khan
    January 26, 2016 at 10:21 am

    It really worked, can't believe...great

    • Guy McDowell
      January 27, 2016 at 4:19 pm

      Hi Noman, I'm glad we could help. :)

  43. Earl
    January 26, 2016 at 6:35 am

    Hi Mr. McDowell.

    I have a SanDisk Cruzed 16gb that is currently in write protect mode. It begun to be in that state after i copied a game from other computer and I did not safely remove the usb. I tried every solution found over the internet including yours but none of them worked. do you have other suggestions for me. I am from the Philippines. Thanks in advance.

  44. Pari
    January 22, 2016 at 2:31 pm

    Thanks a lot...it worked!!!!!!

    • Guy McDowell
      January 25, 2016 at 3:37 pm

      My pleasure. I'm glad we could help.

  45. Sandy
    January 22, 2016 at 2:08 am

    Thankyou Thankyou Thankyou ,...Guy McDowell

    You are life saver..I tried everything on internet but your post saved me ..

    • Guy McDowell
      January 25, 2016 at 3:36 pm

      You're very welcome. I'm glad we could help.

  46. nn
    January 20, 2016 at 8:10 pm

    I had the same issue with an SMI USB drive. Fixed it. None of the diskpart, regedit, or any other techniques worked.

    This link was very helpful. https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/3fb251b1-c31b-4d6a-a3bb-9ca9f44a05ee/usb-drive-read-only?forum=winserverfiles

    1. Download this http://www.nirsoft.net/utils/usbdeview.zip
    2. Use the ChipGenius_v4_00_0026_b2.exe to identify the microcontroller you have on your USB drive (I had an SMI)
    3. Find the microcontroller and download it's manufacturer reset utility. For me this was found here: http://dl.mydigit.net/down.php?a_k=KlhzSnZ%2BFnVJC0l0QjxfEio8PBInAyIWK3dXeF5XW3VVa1JIaGBiQnJUekp%2BbFB9WlNBdFZ0EAYodjdOcg%3D%3D

    Plugged in the drive and ran the tool. It reset everything...including the write protection.

  47. gagan deep singh
    January 20, 2016 at 11:34 am

    dear we are unble to format our drive

    • Guy McDowell
      January 20, 2016 at 4:45 pm

      Sorry, I need more information about your situation before I can recommend any steps. Have you tried everything in the article? Gone through the comments and tried the suggestions there?

  48. sha
    January 11, 2016 at 6:57 am

    Dear McDowell,

    I am facing a problem with my HP 4GB usb Drive. When I plugging the device, it shows only in the devices and printers section, I tired many CLI commands ( DISKPART, DISK VOLUME etc ) to access the memory. But it shows the name as SM3255AA MEMORY BAR and the Model number and Manufacturer property shows as unavailable.

    please help me to find out the issue,

  49. EDC
    January 8, 2016 at 12:07 am

    Thank you Guy for sharing your knowledge... Very useful. I've done the cmd and worked for my Lexar 32 GB. I can now format it without the message "The disk is write protected". God bless you! Cheers!

    • Guy McDowell
      January 8, 2016 at 12:53 pm

      I'm glad I could help.

  50. chandrabharathi.c
    January 6, 2016 at 4:24 am

    HI
    Got a problem with my USB-Drive, I can't write anything in it nor format it, all this because it write-protected itself lol, since it doesn't have a write-protect switch nowhere!
    Can't delete, there's no delete option on right-click!

    Can't format:

    Disk Management says it's healthy, but can't manipulate nothing with it:

    Diskpart fails too, sends 'salute' to event log:

    The little registry trick fails too:

    Tried formatting it through 'Safe Mode with command prompt' failed too!
    Tried many formatting tools and apps, some fail, some couldn't even detect it!
    Tried it on my other Win XP, MAC, Linux, same...
    Tried with some live cd-s fails too!

    • Guy McDowell
      January 7, 2016 at 4:42 pm

      There are some other suggestions throughout the comments. Check those out.
      It might be time to look at getting a new USB drive though.

      • chandrabharathi.c
        January 8, 2016 at 4:32 am

        In disk attributes
        Read only:NO

        what it mean??still i didn't get any solution for formating my pendrive

        • Guy McDowell
          January 8, 2016 at 12:52 pm

          That means that the Read Only attribute is set to NO. So you should be able to read and write to your pendrive.

  51. Mrinal
    January 1, 2016 at 3:11 pm

    Thanks finally Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool worked for me. After long hours of search found this article very helpful.

    Restored my Kingston Data Traveler 2.0 8GB successfully.

    • Guy McDowell
      January 8, 2016 at 1:13 pm

      I'm glad I could help. That Apacer tool has been a real miracle worker.

  52. MJ
    December 22, 2015 at 9:28 am

    read-only: no

    help plss.

  53. concerned person
    December 18, 2015 at 9:35 pm

    it didn't work for me. It now thinks i 8 GB sandisk is now only 2.31 gb

  54. Marvin Seno
    December 18, 2015 at 2:37 am

    I cant believe it worked on me !!thnx bro

    • Guy McDowell
      December 18, 2015 at 2:48 am

      Hi Marvin,

      Very glad it worked for you. Cheers!

  55. Rook
    December 14, 2015 at 7:50 pm

    My drive would allow anything to be put on it. Just heaven forbid if you needed to delete or modify anything! Blasted "disk is write protected".

    I had to use a similar approach to ypz59371.

    The command line didn't work, Disk Management didn't work, and a program wouldn't work. I tried putting in my Windows 7 installation disk to use their partition manager, but that didn't work. I got out my PCLinuxOS LiveCD and some drive manager utility on it said the table was too corrupted to read and that it would have to clear it. Never could get it to format it, but when I booted Windows 7 back up my disk FINALLY allowed itself to be re-formatted. No more "disk is write protected" pop-ups so far and I can delete things again.

    • Guy McDowell
      December 16, 2015 at 1:06 am

      That's weird, but I'm glad it's working for you now.

      Perhaps the partition table being cleared made it possible for Windows to treat it as a fresh, unpartitioned drive. I'm honestly not sure how that all worked out, but still glad for you.

  56. Sandeep Kumar
    December 2, 2015 at 6:35 pm

    hi

    i am not able to format my pendrive

    I am unable to see the space in my pendrive.....

    the space is reduced to 64MB and free space is 0

    can you help me out with regard

  57. muralee
    November 25, 2015 at 10:29 am

    please help i do not format my pandrive this softwar....

  58. dhana
    November 22, 2015 at 11:19 am

    thank you...................tried almost every thing ! final this restore thing worked.

  59. Moki
    November 20, 2015 at 7:42 pm

    After I finish with the step 1 in cmd, when I tried to do formatting test I forgot to remove flash drive from my laptop before formatting and now it won't read it. Is there any way to read it again?

    • Guy McDowell
      November 20, 2015 at 8:50 pm

      I don't understand. Did you format your flash drive?

      When you say 'it won't read it' do you mean your computer doesn't see the flash drive?
      Or, do you mean you don't see any files on the flash drive?

      If you can see your flash drive in Windows Explorer, but you don't see any files on it, that's because the formatting erases everything on the flash drive.

      If you have the flash drive inserted, but you can't see it in Windows, I recommend trying the different software utilities like the Apacer and Kingston tools.

      Also, check the manufacturer's website to see if they have any advice or a tool that could help you out.

      • Testing
        November 25, 2015 at 9:48 am

        Orayts!

    • Moki
      November 20, 2015 at 9:30 pm

      I did format it and now I can't see it in Windows Explorer. (Thanks for the swift response)

      • Moki
        November 20, 2015 at 9:42 pm

        I tried these software and it didn't work. It doesn't show me anything to select although Flash Drive is inserted. Thank you.

  60. ypz59371
    November 9, 2015 at 6:31 am

    i have DT 101 G2 16 GB pen-drive. had same problem. i used a partition tool (AOMEI Partition Assistant) to delete the partition, then used window's disk management to change the drive letter. At last formatted, from same disk management, with volume Level:empty ,File system: exFAT and allocation unit size: 4096K.

    now i don't know what i did out there but its working. no read and write protection. all good. hope this might help someone.

    • Guy McDowell
      November 14, 2015 at 5:15 pm

      That's a novel approach and I see why it would work.

      Thank you for sharing that. I'm sure it'll help several people.

    • Thomas Jespersen
      December 23, 2015 at 8:05 am

      I tried the two tools in this article, I tried the partition utility with windows, I tried diskpart. But the AOMEI partition assistant is what worked! Thanks!

      I should mention there is a freeware edition which is plenty to do this.

  61. Juan Garcia
    October 29, 2015 at 5:23 am

    I have a Kingston DT101 G2 write protected and with Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool it was usable again, I used the RESTORE option.

    Already used diskpart, hp usb format tool, and many more but none worked……….
    Thanks a lot

    • Aayush
      November 21, 2015 at 11:46 pm

      Dude you are awesome.....thnxxx a lot....was facing the same issue....tried almost every thing ! final this restore thing worked. :D :D :D

  62. Mohammad pourparvin
    October 14, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Perfect information ...
    Big like

  63. Hasith Ranasinghe
    September 13, 2015 at 6:57 pm

    Apacer worked for me. Thanks!!!!!!

  64. Vikash Sahu
    August 17, 2015 at 7:29 pm

    It killed my USB stick :( ..
    _RIP

  65. JAYENDRA PRASAD
    July 31, 2015 at 7:59 am

    those softwares not loading my drive

  66. Gurpreet Singh Kainth
    July 30, 2015 at 5:27 pm

    Worked like a charm!!!!!!!!!!!!
    For me worked the Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool.
    Used RESTORE option.
    Already used diskpart, hp usb format tool, and many more but none worked……….
    Thank you a lot!!!!! Greetings!!!!!

    • Guy McDowell
      July 30, 2015 at 6:12 pm

      Another happy Apacer user. :D

      • Poorna Hewapathirana
        August 12, 2015 at 8:05 pm

        But it changed the drive name completely, now its recognized as a "Phison USB Disk 50x" instead of Kingston G4!...

        • Guy McDowell
          August 12, 2015 at 9:30 pm

          A USB flash drive by any other name...
          As long as it works!

  67. Kyle Sylvester
    July 29, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    Unfortunately, it killed my stick. ah well...

    • Guy McDowell
      July 30, 2015 at 6:12 pm

      Hi Kyle,

      Sorry to hear that.

  68. Alejandro Pérez
    July 22, 2015 at 12:54 pm

    Worked like a charm!!!!!!!!!!!!
    For me worked the Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool.
    Used RESTORE option.
    Already used diskpart, hp usb format tool, and many more but none worked..........
    Thank you a lot!!!!! Greetings!!!!!

    • Guy McDowell
      July 24, 2015 at 9:31 pm

      Glad I could help. Now if I can just convince Apacer to give me a dollar every time I send someone their way. ;)

  69. James Guan
    July 18, 2015 at 7:12 pm

    Apacer worked like a charm on my Corsair voyager slider 64G, instead of formatting, I picked restore and it worked! Got rid of write protect and back in business. Just wanted to drop a line to show my appreciation. Thanks!

    • Guy McDowell
      July 23, 2015 at 12:44 pm

      Really glad to hear that! That Apacer utility has helped so many people.

  70. Alan Foos
    July 13, 2015 at 12:00 pm

    Oh, wait, the Apacer utility worked once I did the restore first instead of format. It was also not write protected after the restore. No format necessary!

    • Guy McDowell
      July 16, 2015 at 12:07 pm

      Hi Alan,

      Glad that worked for you. Cheers!

  71. Alan Foos
    July 13, 2015 at 11:54 am

    Unfortunately, neither utility worked for me on the same Kingston drive in the article. Will keep looking...

  72. ??????? ????? ?????
    July 4, 2015 at 5:59 am

    it's very useful and in an easier way

  73. Ian Zyborski
    June 25, 2015 at 10:11 pm

    The Apacer utility worked a treat! One reclaimed 32GB pen drive!

  74. phyliprees
    May 28, 2015 at 3:38 pm

    Thanks so much Apacer worked a treat on my Kingston DataTraveller, fantastic little utilty. Will keep it safe in case I need it again.

  75. Guisela
    May 25, 2015 at 9:52 am

    thank you, this was very helpful. it fixed the problem!

  76. mahboob
    May 25, 2015 at 7:04 am

    hi
    what is error (the arguments specified for this command are not valid.)
    (when i want write to cmdattributes disk cleared readonly) for solve Write Protect usb drive

  77. shahriar hossain
    May 21, 2015 at 9:27 am

    Dear Guy,

    I have tried different way to solve Twinmoss 16gb pendrive write protection problem. But still it is not possible to reach a solution. Please give a suggestion to solve this as early as possible. Thank you

    BR//

    Shahriar hossain
    Email:Shahriar8989@gmail.com

  78. abc
    May 16, 2015 at 5:24 pm

    Good information. Worked well.

  79. arsalan
    May 15, 2015 at 2:12 pm

    Thanks! that method is working in my harddisk.and thanks again!

  80. adam
    May 9, 2015 at 5:13 pm

    I DID NOT WORK WITH MINE WHAT SHOULD I DO
    PLEASE HELP AND COULD YOU USE THE SAME METHOD WITH AN SD CARD WHICH IS REFUSING TO FORMAT

  81. Rajesh Sahani
    May 6, 2015 at 7:21 am

    I USED ALL THE METHOD GIVEN HERE, BUT ITS STILL NOT WORKING. PLEASE HELP ME HOW TO UNLOCK MY PEN DRIVE FROM WRITE PROTECTION.

    • arsalan
      May 15, 2015 at 2:14 pm

      after method again format.it unlock. check it

  82. Guy
    April 28, 2015 at 8:00 pm

    Thank you, Esau. I'm glad it helped. I'm sure Acer would love a thank-you note too. Maybe they'll read this!

  83. Esau
    April 27, 2015 at 3:06 am

    I have been searching for a solution for 24 hours straight. Just saw this at 5 AM in the morning and just wanna add a comment in case anyone comes here and is skeptical. Thanks Acer, and you man!

  84. arash
    April 11, 2015 at 4:16 pm

    Thank You Veryyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy much

    ilove you thankssssssssssssssssssssss

    Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool works for me

    you saved me man
    thanksssssssssssssssssssssssssssss

    • Guy
      April 12, 2015 at 8:18 pm

      Don't thank me, thank Acer! That tool is excellent.

  85. Yasir
    April 8, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    I tried every method that are given above to rescue my USB . But all methods failed to rescue. Now my USB is unusable that its neither opening nor Formatting . Please Help or suggest any tool s/w. HP formatting tool is not working.

    • Guy
      April 8, 2015 at 7:06 pm

      Hi Yasir,

      Is there a light on the USB, or anything to let you know that power is getting to it?
      Have you tried it on different computers?

      If there is no way to know if power is getting to it, and it doesn't work on any other computer, you might have to give in and get a new USB flash drive. Sorry I couldn't help you more.

  86. NCS2972
    April 7, 2015 at 3:34 am

    It didn't work for me :'(

    I'm using SanDisk Cruzer Facet

    I've tried regedit>hkey local machine to unwrite the usb write protected but it didn't works too.

    Please help.

  87. IanP
    April 2, 2015 at 6:15 pm

    Apacer restore failed with contact vendor error. Afterwards the device was no longer seen by Windows...pulled out of USB slot, re-inserted, Windows detected claiming unformatted and did I want to format...It works thank-you.

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:56 pm

      Yep, glad that worked for you. Great little tool.

  88. IM HAPPY
    March 24, 2015 at 5:18 pm

    Hi,

    I had the same problem with my PenDrive SLiQ 64GB. I have tried all of your solutions but to no avail. I just can't reformat the pendrive as "The Disk is Write-Protected".

    Apart from above option, I have also tried reformat it through DiskPart and still does not work.

    What works though is the Apacer Tool. Although my thumbdrive is not Apacer, well it works. I have to choose the "Restore" option though, as the "Format" option does not work.

    Thanks for your help. :)

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:56 pm

      If it works, it works! Glad it helped.

  89. Guy
    March 17, 2015 at 2:21 pm

    Hi Surinder,

    I'm glad we could help. Cheers!

  90. surinder
    March 16, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    Thanks very much

    after 2 weeks of searching i became helpless tried every method but at last
    this article and software helped me to disable write protection from my usb , now it works like a new one.. Format didn't work, restore smashed the write protection and my pen drive became healthy.......

    Again thanks very much.......

  91. JoKeR
    March 16, 2015 at 10:35 am

    The Apacer Tool nor the Kingston Format Utility does not even see my USB, pls help me sir? I have 32gb Kingstonn Data TravelerG3

  92. Daniel
    March 15, 2015 at 4:21 am

    I tried Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool on my write-protected (which I believe was actually corrupted) Kingston DT101G2 16GB and it WORKED!

    I have been trying to remove the write-protection for nearly 1 year and I tried nearly everything! Even opening the flash drive to check for lock switches, formatting through cmd, powershell, Linux shell, BSD shell, Baidu shell (that's actually a joke, but if someone said it could work, I'd have tried it)... And nothing worked, except Apacer's tool.

    I tried it once and it worked. I did not even try the format option, for I was quite sure it wouldn't work, so I clicked Restore rightaway and it simply cleaned all the files I couldn't erase and renamed the unit PUBLIC. So I formatted it again to put a name I wanted on it and then tried copying a file to it, reading and removing and it worked 100%.

    The write-protection issue is still a mystery for me. I don't even know how did it happen, so I think it was really corrupted. I believe that when the pen drive controller's firmware gets corrupted, so it shows this kind of weird stuff. Kingston assured me that this model don't have any kind of write protection option except for third-part softwares, so they told me it could be broken or maybe a counterfeit unit, but all the genuine Kingston marks were here and I had it registered... I believe it could have been caused by a malware infection. But now, it's all ok. THANKS!

    • Guy
      March 17, 2015 at 1:02 pm

      Hi Daniel,

      I'm really glad it worked for you! That Apacer tool has been a boon to lot's of people without Apacer USB thumb drives.

  93. MD.MOIN
    March 14, 2015 at 3:30 pm

    my disk protection issue is resolve....

    very very thanks for you....

  94. Guy
    March 14, 2015 at 3:22 am

    It's all in the article and the comments.

  95. javed
    March 13, 2015 at 3:06 pm

    how to format write protected pen drive with the help of software???? and give me software link

  96. pavan
    March 10, 2015 at 12:13 pm

    When every other tool sucks this one actually works . Great!!!

    • Guy
      March 10, 2015 at 3:29 pm

      Hi Pavan,
      Glad it finally worked out for you. :)

  97. James
    February 28, 2015 at 6:53 pm

    What an easy, straight-forward article. I was really stuck - I've been having trouble with a brand-new USB HDD I accidentally corrupted and locked myself out of and finally found something easy to follow. Keep up the great work.

    • Guy
      March 2, 2015 at 1:14 pm

      Hi James,

      I'm glad we could help. I'll keep trying to help folks, that's just my nature. :)

  98. Cornelius F
    February 27, 2015 at 10:22 pm

    Hello, Guy!

    Thank for article and the content of your site!

    Ten days ago begun a hard way to reformat a no-name USB flash drive (4 Gb, chip Alcor Micro) used as Manjaro Live USB pendrive.

    Tried inclusive your methods here exposed and, really, my culture added important knows of USB ”rebel” write protected devices.

    Today, after many tryouts, reused to resolve this hard problem as a wonder, because used, by downloaded different tools from usbdev.ru, found ”Dr. UDF” ( Repeat: Dr.UFDv1.0.0408.0 This file was downloaded from: http://www.usbdev.ru)

    In final, my OS is Windows 7 Ultimate 32b ... and with this reformatted memory stick wish to install Live USB with Linux Mint 16 Cinnamon...project succeded with full success!

    I suggest to ad this tool at your article. Goodbye!

    • Guy
      March 2, 2015 at 1:14 pm

      Hi Cornelius,

      Thank you for adding that link! I think someone else had mentioned it, but couldn't quite remember the name or where they got it from.

      I can't add it to the article, but I am still glad you put the link in the comments.

      For anyone going to that site, I haven't used the software so I can't recommend it. Also the site is in Russian, so you may want to visit it through Google Translate.

  99. Cook
    February 25, 2015 at 6:55 pm

    I went through each and every one of the alternatives listed here as well as others.

    The only thing that finally did it was the Transcend JetFlash Online Recovery tool V1.0

    So happy to get the USB back.

    Thanks for all the help.

    • Guy
      February 26, 2015 at 12:21 pm

      I'm glad that we, the other readers and myself, could help. Go team!

  100. kukidada
    February 23, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    maa di budii twadiii

    • Guy
      February 23, 2015 at 7:40 pm

      Kukidada, my thoughts exactly! :D

  101. Andrej
    February 16, 2015 at 11:22 am

    My Kingston DataTraveler 32 GB was write protected and I was not able to remove this protection. But thanks to your article I tried Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool (the restore function) and everything works again. Thank you very much !

    • Guy
      February 17, 2015 at 1:27 pm

      Hi Andrej,

      Glad I could help!

  102. gopi
    February 16, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Hello Sir Not show my usb drive in online only Hdd show how to fix this problem Plz help me..

  103. gopi
    February 16, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Hello Sir Not show my usb drive in online only Hdd show how to fix this problem Plz help me..

  104. homerdk
    February 11, 2015 at 4:13 pm

    HDDGURUs low level format tool worked for me, the kingston one did not even detect it and the apacer tool became unresponsive in win8.1.
    My pendrive is a Kingston datatraveler USB 3.0p 8gb

  105. Manod
    February 6, 2015 at 6:26 pm

    Guy M,
    I found a solution. I used the Transcend JetFlash Online Recovery tool to format my flash drive. And it worked
    Thanks.

  106. Manod
    February 6, 2015 at 6:11 pm

    Guy M please help. I cant delete, write or format anything on my Trancend flash drive, I get the write protected error. I followed every single step you said and it's still the same.
    The weirdest thing is that My Dropbox detects my flash drive as a camera and it asks me whether to sync the photos on my flash drive. I tried everything, surfed all over the web, but couldn't find a solution :(
    Please help :(

  107. aghna shamsi
    February 3, 2015 at 4:58 pm

    i have tried but its not plzz help me out
    when i have typed list disk
    disk 1 size is 3781 mb
    then
    ATTRIBUTES Disk
    READ ONLY MEMORY : YES INSTEAD OF NO..........

  108. Mandy Sidhu
    January 31, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    Thanku so much man !!! You r the best.. i tried everything , searched hours on google.. but nothing worked,... finally ur tool worked... thanku thanku thanku...

  109. Imran Ahmad
    January 28, 2015 at 11:19 am

    Had tried everything but only Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool could work, but i used 'Restore' option. Thanks.

  110. Ken M
    January 26, 2015 at 12:22 am

    apacer did the trick--thanks!

  111. Arun kumar
    January 5, 2015 at 7:44 pm

    I use these methods but pentdrive is not detect in the utility
    so i cant format it
    but our system read it
    can u say other best method
    my pendrive is sandisk cruser switch 32gp

  112. Arun kumar
    January 5, 2015 at 7:54 am

    my sandisk cruser switch 32gp new pendrive is write protected .
    tell all the methods to solve this problem plessss....

  113. vishal
    January 2, 2015 at 3:13 pm

    it didnt work on my hp v112b .
    it shows disk attributies cleared sucessfully.
    but when i formet it .
    it show the same your drive write is proteceted.

  114. Arash
    January 2, 2015 at 12:52 pm

    I used the DISKPART method. On the attributes list the "readonly" attribute was disabled (Readonly = No) by default. But still I couldn't write / copy any file on my USB Flash drive.

    • Guy
      January 2, 2015 at 1:28 pm

      Did you try any of the other methods? Maybe look into the manufacturer's site to see if they have a tool that would help?

  115. Amit tyagi
    January 2, 2015 at 10:37 am

    No solution problem write protected pen drive no format

  116. Gulrez
    January 1, 2015 at 9:03 am

    Thanks a lot pal.. the apacer USB3.0 Repair tool worked like a charm.

  117. Joseph
    December 30, 2014 at 5:21 am

    Me Apply all the process what u give, but could not format USB write protected pen drive. Can you give a solution please?

    • Guy
      December 30, 2014 at 2:00 pm

      Joseph, I'd need a lot more details.

  118. Guy
    December 29, 2014 at 2:06 pm

    Transcend has a tool that may help.

    Check out their JetFlash Online Recovery tool.

  119. Aswin Joseph
    December 25, 2014 at 4:58 pm

    Hey i have a transcend 16 gigs pen drive and i tried all the options u gave. when i do restore option with Apacher it says device not found.. can u help me out of it

  120. Guy
    December 24, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    Hey Shehzad,

    I'm really glad my article could help you. Thank you for letting me know something helped you. That's what I do this for. It also helps all our fellow readers see what might work for them too!

    Cheers!

  121. Shehzad
    December 24, 2014 at 5:22 am

    Hey... it worked...
    Alhamd-O-Lillah all my data was SAVED.
    Thank you Guy M.

    I used "Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool".
    First I copied all the stuff from my "read-only" pen drive to PC.
    Then;
    Pressing "FORMAT", didn't work. (format failed)
    But,
    Pressing "Restore", well! it did the work.
    It was restored to "Factory Default". I copied All my data back and; YEEEEAH :)

    • bill
      January 2, 2015 at 12:34 pm

      the ONLY thing works...i tried everything!!! Thanx

    • Obi Ubrat
      March 30, 2015 at 4:22 pm

      Whoooa, it works......!
      Thank You Shehzad.

    • Obi Ubrat
      March 30, 2015 at 4:22 pm

      Formating now.......

    • Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool
      May 12, 2015 at 2:55 am

      Super dica, aqui, depois de várias tentativas, somente o Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool deu certo ! Obrigado !

  122. Anon
    December 21, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    i have a 256gb USB drive, no clue where it came from, but i doubt i coudl get another one. nothign works, i would really like to be able to use this...

    • Guy
      December 24, 2014 at 2:11 pm

      Thumb drive? Can't say I've seen one with that capacity. I have a feeling that the sheer capacity of it might be causing problems. Certain file systems don't play well with larger capacities. Maybe try formatting as NTFS if you only use it on Windows systems?

      I really don't know what to suggest. Sorry.

  123. RAI
    December 18, 2014 at 6:15 am

    EVERYTHING IS FAILED FOR ME EVEN THIS ... PLZZ DO HELP SIR

    • Guy
      December 24, 2014 at 2:13 pm

      Hey Rai,

      If you can give more details, maybe I, or one of our fellow readers, could help you out.
      Error messages?
      Drive make and model?
      Details of what you've tried?
      Details of the computer you're using it on?
      Those sorts of things.

  124. Guy M
    September 22, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    I don't have any other ideas, beyond what's suggested in this article and elsewhere on MakeUseOf.com. It might be time to get another pen drive.

  125. Aryan
    September 21, 2014 at 11:50 am

    i have moserbaer 16gb pendrive which is unable to format i try many method but i cant do format it show window unable to complete format plz help me

  126. Guy M
    September 17, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    You're very welcome! Glad we could help.

  127. Stan
    September 17, 2014 at 10:21 am

    Thank you so much!

    I too had this problem just the other day and nothing mentioned all over the Web worked, until I came across this article! The Apacer USB 3.0 Repair Tool did the trick, after two days of endless searching. The drive had no write-protect switch, no Windows or Linux utility worked (trust me, I used them all!). The format option of the Apacer tool did not work either, but the restore option did! I was just about to trash the drive and get a replacement and had sworn this was gonna be the last tutorial I'll look at. Thanks to you, my drive is okay and working like new again :)

  128. Guy M
    August 12, 2014 at 12:36 pm

    Glad we could help!

  129. Anonymous
    August 8, 2014 at 3:49 pm

    I have never seen this Apacer tool but it works great! It was the only tool that recovered my drive after a loooong search and many other apps. Thanks very much!

  130. Guy M
    July 27, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    Glad I could help!

  131. Prashant Pardeshi
    July 26, 2014 at 4:45 pm

    thank u sir !!!!! Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool helped me.....
    I recovered my flash drive which was write protected. I used gparted partition software(Ubuntu), Minitool Partition Wizard, TestDisk software, and also edited registry. Done everything but didnt worked. Thnx to you I solved my problem.

  132. Guy M
    June 13, 2014 at 11:36 am

    All you folks who found this article helpful and commented on that - Thank You!
    That is the best payment I could receive. I love it when something I do helps others. That's why I write - so you don't have to have the frustration I've had with a problem.

  133. Anonymous
    May 14, 2014 at 4:28 pm

    Worked Perfect using the Restore Method! I really appreciate it!

  134. raj
    May 11, 2014 at 5:25 am

    Thnx god and a great thnx to u buddy, its really work....
    i tried almost every single method but i did nt get my pen drive..
    but finally Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool helps me...

    • LVL91
      June 13, 2014 at 8:54 am

      Yep! This post with the Apacer USB3.0 Repair Tool did the trick for my ICIDU 32GB USB3.0 usb stick! Thanks!!!! Finally after tons of searching with no luck from the normal Apacer tool, Windows, Partition Manager, HP format utility.

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:53 pm

      Great tool, isn't it? Glad it worked for you.

  135. rishad
    April 28, 2014 at 6:33 am

    after everything failed at last 'The Apacer USB 3.0 Repair tool' worked. firstly the format function didn't work. then i used restore fuction and the drive shows fat32 file system and i couldnt format the pendrive. after unpluging and repluging i managed to successfully format the Kingston data travelor 111. thanx a lot dear friend :) :)

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:52 pm

      My pleasure. That Apacer tool is great!

  136. sanu
    April 24, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    Thank you Sir...

    • ALIREZA
      March 2, 2015 at 5:39 am

      HI HOW CAN FORMAT THE THE WRITE PROTECTED FLASH

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:49 pm

      My pleasure. I'm here to help!

  137. Mahar Zohaib
    April 24, 2014 at 2:04 pm

    I did try this but facing same problem write protracted :-(

  138. JOELJOHN
    April 22, 2014 at 4:03 pm

    i HAVE TRIED FOR YEARS TO UNPROTECT AND OLD FLASH DRIVE. THIS FINALLY WORKED. THANKS

    • Guy M
      April 24, 2014 at 10:40 am

      Glad to hear that. You're very welcome!

  139. anonymous coward
    April 3, 2014 at 10:06 pm

    This only works if the USB drive is not write protected at the controller level be it firmware related or due to having too many bad blocks.

    • Guy
      April 2, 2015 at 9:49 pm

      Makes sense. At that point, time to get a new USB thumb drive. Prices are dropping every day.

  140. Hans
    April 3, 2014 at 3:35 pm

    What about a flash drive with a separate CD part onto it for fingerprints? How does one get rid of that part?

    • anonymous coward
      April 3, 2014 at 10:06 pm

      Hans, depends on the manufacturer of your usb drive. Their might be software the removes it all together such as U3 Software from Sandisk.

    • Col. Panek
      April 4, 2014 at 3:18 am

      I had one that had a Partition formatted as a "CD drive" and had a catalog on it. GParted made short work of it. Why use the command line on Windows to do it when a Linux GUI app does it quicker? And yes, I am aware of the irony of that!

  141. Kevin
    April 3, 2014 at 3:17 am

    USB was working fine and suddenly become read-only + when all these methods failed => we should try re-flashing the I/O chip.

  142. jas
    April 3, 2014 at 1:44 am

    I find using Gparted from a USB Linux install works exceptionally well--say 100% in the last six years. It is odd the program isn't mentioned. The HP format tool works almost as well.

    • Guy M
      April 3, 2014 at 11:17 am

      Hi Jas, thank you for the info! I tried to stick to methods that were most likely to be tried by an average computer user. Once we throw Linux in the mix, we've gone into territory that most users aren't willing to tread upon.

      I did try the HP format tool for this article, but it failed in my tests. I have heard positive comments like yours from other people though.

  143. Kushal R
    April 2, 2014 at 5:01 pm

    And the question still remains unanswered...

    • Guy M
      April 2, 2014 at 7:30 pm

      Yes and no. The question was if you could format a write-protected USB flash drive. That can be done. It raises the question though, of how to remove write-protection if you can't do it through the normal methods.

      I think if you've followed all the advice given in this article and it's linked articles, there's nothing left but to get a new USB flash drive. In terms of the cost of time, you'd have already spent enough to buy a few new ones.

    • Somee
      April 27, 2015 at 4:29 am

      hello, i used the given command,now also i am not able to remove the write protection from my usb flash drive.....while formating it is showing that the drive is write protection....what should i do now?

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