Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Formating a 128 GB flash drive in Windows 8.1

This seems to be a pretty straight forward and basic action for someone who has experience working with windows operating system.

My problem was that I used my 128 GB flash drive as a boot drive and it was formatted in FAT32 with 32 GB capacity.

I started by searching the web for a rapid solution and I found that everyone was pointing out to "Disk Management". I accessed "Disk Management" but could not format beyond 32GB in FAT32 since the partition on the flash drive was made with 32 GB of space only.

Solution:

Remembered the good old CMD console and the Diskpart Comand tool as described in this article for Windows XP:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/300415

Note: You are required to have Administrator privileges to format drives.

If the page is no longer available, here are the action steps:

1. Access CMD console by going to the startup menu and write "cmd"
2. On the console write "diskpart" - this will enter the disk partition tool
3. Enter "list disk" command and check wish drive corresponds to your flash drive
4. Use the "select N" where N is the drive number to change for the correct drive
5. Enter 'list partition' to display all partitions.

In my case there was only one partition for the drive and the rest was free space. I need to remove the partition of 32GB and create a new one with the full space capability.

6. Use the "select M" where M is the partition of 32 GB, to ensure we are only using the correct partition
7. Enter "delete partition M" to remove the currently selected partition
8. Use "create partition primary" without any number to create a partition with the full available space.

9. Exit the diskpart tool by writing "exit"
10. Exit the CMD line writing "exit"

11. Back in Windows, go to "My Computer", right click on it and choose "Manage"
12. Under "Disk Management" section you should have the flash drive with the partition you have just created with available size according to full capacity.
13. Right click on the partition and choose format, select FAT32 or NTFS (if you require files over 2GB of size)

Ok, that it, the format should bring the full available space for the partition, in my case 127 GB.

Hope this helps and if required comment and I will reply as soon as possible.