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How to Unformat USB Drive?



updated on 2022-10-24 to Data Recovery

Many names refer to USB storage devices: external hard drive, flash drive, USB disk, USB drive, and pen drive. Have you ever lost all the information stored on a USB drive because you mistakenly formatted it? Is it possible to retrieve the data?

If so, you shouldn't let it get you down; this is an extremely common issue that every user of a removable storage device may face at some point. USB drive formatting removal is needed. Firstly, let's talked about the formatting type.

unformat USB drive

Accidental and intentional formatting:

People can mistake selecting "format" when interacting with a USB drive on a computer. In retrospect, they feel responsible for losing all their important files on a USB device and then deleting them.

However, there are rare cases where users will willfully format a USB drive, such as when making a file system switch or while trying to eradicate malicious software or corruption. It is highly recommended that before formatting a USB drive, the user makes a copy of all the files on the drive. Averting this catastrophe would be a monumental task.

Is it possible to unformat USB flash drive?

Although Windows does not have a built-in way to undo a format, restoring files that have been accidentally deleted may still be possible. Thus, it is possible to undo the formatting of a flash drive by using the "unformat" command.

Both a Quick Format and a Full Format are available in Windows. If you didn't add a lot of new data to the thumb drive after doing a Quick Format, you should be able to retrieve all of the deleted data. However, when you perform a Full Format, the drive is completely overwritten with zeros, rendering any previous data on the drive completely unrecoverable.

You can unformat a USB flash disk in two ways:

#1 Restore Your USB Drive's Contents From the Backup

Use the backup file stored on the local disk or in the cloud to return the original data. This technique is straightforward to use. Users can work autonomously, and the system is quick and efficient. For the most part, it is impossible to fail. The requirement to back up data from a USB device to a local hard drive or the cloud in advance is a severe limitation. This approach is impossible to achieve without such meticulous planning.

#2 Recover the formatted USB drive with professional software

Your data is probably recoverable even if you didn't back up your USB drive before formatting it. When data is lost on a USB flash drive due to formatting, employing data recovery software might greatly assist in getting it back. Magoshare Data Recovery, for instance, can rescue information from hard drives, external drives, and camera memory cards lost due to deletion, formatting, or virus infection. Images, audio, video, and documents can be easily recovered and restored.

How to Unformat an USB Flash Drive?

In several situations, individuals may unintentionally format their USB flash drives. The good news is that data can be recovered even if the drive has been formatted. Here, we've compiled the quickest and simplest ways to undelete/unformat files from a USB drive.

Magoshare Data Recovery

  • Recover deleted, formatted and lost data from USB drive.
  • Recover lost data from external disk, memory card, camera, HDD, SSD, etc.
  • Three steps to get all lost data back.

Now that you know how formatting and unformatting a USB flash drive works in theory, you can go on to the practical steps of reverting everything to its original position or a folder of your choosing. The services provided by Magoshare Data Recovery, which are compatible with Windows and macOS, are the best choice. Here are a few steps to unformat an USB flash drive:

Step 1. Connect the formatted USB flash drive to your computer, then open Magoshare Data Recovery. Click to select the USB flash drive to start data recovery.

Unformat an USB Flash Drive

Step 2. Click on Scan button, then Magoshare Data Recovery will deeply scan the formatted USB flash drive and find every recoverable file.

Unformat an USB Flash Drive

Step 3. Once the scan is completed, you can preview all recoverable files. Select the wanted files and save them by click on Recover Now button.

Unformat an USB Flash Drive


Unfortunately, electronic devices are prone to mishaps resulting in irretrievable data loss. Don't fret every time the issue arises. If you've lost images, videos, and other files from a USB device, memory card, or hard drive, you can get them back by following the steps in the article linked above.

If you will sell or donate your USB flash drive, you can try data erasure software to permanently wipe USB flash drive data to prevent potential data recovery.

Permanently wipe USB drive