Top 5 Ways to Format USB Drive in Windows 11

Formatting a USB drive seems easy because you can click the Erase button to delete all the files that the USB drive may hold. However, Sometimes, to remove any malware that may be lurking in it; Sometimes you may need to format your USB drive to repair damaged partitions or to choose a compatible file system that will allow your USB drive to work across Windows and macOS.

There are several ways to format a USB drive on your computer. We’ve rounded up the top ways to format a USB drive on your Windows 11 PC.

1. Format a USB Drive using File Explorer.

File Explorer offers a quick and direct way to format USB drives on your Windows 11 PC. However, File Explorer first needs to find your USB drive to format it. Follow the steps below to format your USB drive using File Explorer.

Step 1: Press Windows + E keys to open File Explorer and click This PC in the left column.

Step 2: Right-click on the USB drive you want to format from the right pane and select Format from the context menu that opens.

Step 3: Click the File System drop-down and select one of the file system formats:

  • Select NTFS to use the USB drive in Windows only.
  • Choose exFAT to use the drive on both Windows and macOS.
  • Go to FAT32 to use between different platforms; However, the maximum file size for transfer will be only 4GB.

Meanwhile, If you are not sure about the file system. Click the ‘Restore Device Defaults’ button before proceeding to the next step.

.

Step 5: Click on the text box under the Volume label and type a name for the USB drive. Then click start.

Step 6: Click OK when the confirmation dialog appears.

2. Format a USB Drive using the Settings app.

Unlike his earlier iterations; The new and improved Settings app found in Windows 11 makes it easy to perform storage-related tasks. Whether it’s creating partitions or formatting a drive, the new and redesigned Settings app in Windows 11 can do it all.

Here’s how to format a USB drive using the Settings app on your Windows 11 PC:

Step 1: Press the Windows + I keys to open the Settings app. Click System in the left column and Storage in the right column.

Step 2: From the storage screen, click on ‘Advanced storage settings’.

Step 3: From the ‘Advanced storage settings’ download; Click on ‘Disks and Volumes’.

Step 4: Then click the drop-down arrow next to the USB drive you want to format.

Step 5: Click on the USB drive letter; In our case it is USB (F:). Then click the Properties button that appears on the right.

Step 6: Click the Format button as shown in the image below.

Step 7: When a Format Volume dialog appears, Enter a name for your drive and use the File System drop-down to select one. Then click Format.

3. Format a USB Drive using Disk Management Utility.

Disk Management utility to manage partitions; It’s useful for changing drive letters and performing other storage-related tasks, such as formatting internal or external drives connected to your Windows 11 PC.

Here’s how to format a USB drive using the disk management utility on your Windows 11 PC.

Step 1: Press the Windows + X shortcut keys to open the Power User Menu and click Disk Management.

Step 2: Find the removable USB drive you want to format and right-click on it. In the context menu that appears, click Format.

Check the capacity and driver of the USB drive before formatting to make sure the correct drive is selected.

Step 3: In the Format dialog, To type a name for the USB drive; Click the Volume label to select a file system and click OK. Alternatively, you can check ‘Perform a quick format’ to let the Windows process complete quickly.

Step 4: Click OK when the confirmation dialog appears.

Your computer will then format the selected USB drive.

4. Format a USB Drive using Command Prompt.

Command Prompt is undoubtedly the most versatile command line interface (CLI) built into Windows. to run batch files; repair corrupted system files or fix activation key issues; You can use it to perform advanced administrative tasks such as booting your PC into safe mode. You can use it to format any internal or external drives connected to it. Your Windows 11 PC

Here’s how you can use Command Prompt to format a USB drive on your Windows 11 PC:

Step 1: Open Windows Search and press Windows + S keys to type. Command Prompt. Click ‘Run as administrator’ from the results for Command Prompt.

Step 2: Click Yes when User Account Control (UAC) appears.

Step 3: Type the following command and press Enter to start the Diskpart utility.

Diskpart

Step 4: To see a list of available drives, type the following command and press Enter.

list disk

Step 5: Type the following command and press Enter to select the USB drive you want to format.

select disk 3

Replace ‘3’ with your USB drive number. Your USB drive may have a different disk number.

Step 6: Type the following command and press Enter to delete all storage partitions.

clean

Step 7: Type the following command and press Enter to create the root partition.

create partition primary

Step 8: Type the following command and press Enter to perform a quick format.

If you want to change the file system for your USB drive, replace ‘NTFS’ with exFAT or FAT32. Meanwhile, If you want to change the drive label, replace ‘USB’ with something else (spaces are not supported).

format fs=NTFS label=USB quick

Step 9: Type the following command and press Enter to assign a random drive letter to the formatted USB drive.

assign

5. Format a USB Drive using Windows PowerShell.

In addition to Command Prompt, You can use Windows PowerShell to perform almost all administrative tasks on your PC. Here’s how you can use Windows PowerShell to format any USB drive connected to your Windows 11 PC:

Step 1: Open Windows Search and press Windows + S keys to type. Windows PowerShell Then click on ‘Run as administrator’ from the results for Command Prompt.

Step 2: Click Yes when User Account Control (UAC) appears.

Step 3: To see a list of connected drives, type the following command and press Enter.

Get-Disk

Step 4: Type the following command and press Enter to select your USB drive and erase all its data and configuration files.

Remember to replace ‘3’ with your USB drive number. Your USB drive may have a different disk number.

Get-Disk 2 | Clear-Disk -RemoveData

Step 5: Type the following message and press Enter to confirm your decision to clear all data and configuration files on your USB drive.

Y

Step 6: Type the following command and press Enter to create a drive partition.

New-Partition -DiskNumber 2 -UseMaximumSize

Step 7: Enter the following command to start a quick format; Select a file system and press Enter to assign a drive label.

If you want to change the file system for your USB drive, replace ‘NTFS’ with exFAT or FAT32. Meanwhile, If you want to change the drive label, replace ‘USB’ with something else (spaces are not supported).

Get-Partition -DiskNumber 2 | Format-Volume -FileSystem NTFS -NewFileSystemLabel USB

Step 8: Type the following command and press Enter to set a drive letter.

Get-Partition -DiskNumber 2 | Set-Partition -NewDriveLetter E

Securely erase any USB Drive in Windows 11.

that’s all. Using the above methods, you can safely format the USB drive connected to your Windows 11 PC. The best thing about these methods is that you don’t need to waste your precious time downloading third party apps or programs.

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