How to Fix USB Flash Drive Not Formatted Error Without Losing Data

Abby Haines updated on Jul 12, 2019 to Data Recovery | How-to Articles

Summary

Here are three parts to solve the USB flash drive not formatted error wihtout losing data. Follow the methods one by one and recover data from not formatted USB flash drive or hard drive.

USB Drive Needs to Be Formatted

Case 1: "My USB drive is saying it is not recognized and needs to be formatted. If I format it will erase all of my files. What can I do to recover my files." (from tom's HARDWARE)

Case 2: "I have a USB flash drive that stopped working and got USB Flash drive is not formatted error. I've tried on several computers but they all remind the drive needs to be reformatted. I have not reformatted it or deleted or anything on it. It contains several files including, .xls, .pdf, .jpg and doc files. Is it possible to fix USB Flash drive not formatted error and open USB without formatting? Please help!"

Usually, if you unplug the removable storage drive directly when you are using it, you may get USB flash drive not formatted error.  And except for an abrupt removal, this error can also pop up when the file system is attacked by the virus, damaged by faulty operation or others. It can come with the different error message like 'You need to format the disk before you can use it', 'Disk is not formatted. Do you want to format it now?

Part 1. Recover Files from an Unformatted (RAW) USB Flash Drive

When you get such messages, don't format the USB device and find a way to fix the issue if you have important data on it. Then how can you manage it since it is impossible to open USB without formatting in this case? First, You can run CHKDSK to fix the device. If you get the error message 'This type of file system is RAW. CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives', then try EaseUS data recovery to manage this job. Working well in RAW recovery, it allows you to recover data from the inaccessible USB flash drive easily and quickly.  Download this disk data recovery software and bring back data first.

Step 1. Run USB data recovery software.

Connect the USB flash drive to your computer and launch EaseUS USB data recovery software on your PC. Select your USB drive which marks as a removable disk, and click "Scan" to start finding your lost files.

Select USB to scan and find lost files

Step 2. Scan all lost files from USB.

EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard will thoroughly scan your USB flash drive and find all your lost data on it. After the scanning process,  use the Filter feature to filter a specific file type. You can check and preview found USB files in this program.

Scan USB drive to find lost files

Step 3. Restore all lost files from USB.

A double-click will allow you to preview the file results. Choose the target files and click "Recover" to save them to a secure location on your PC or other external storage devices.

Restore lost USB data
Do You Need Specialized Data Recovery Services?
You may need further help for tough data loss situations like reformatting drive, RAW disk, partition loss, repartition failures and system boot error. Consult with EaseUS Data Recovery Experts for cost-efficient one-on-one manual recovery service. They could offer the following services after FREE diagnosis:
1. Unformat the drive
2. Repair the RAID, RAW disk or operating system
3. Recover lost partition (the one that cannot be recovered by software)

Part 2. Format USB Flash Drive to Fix the Not Formatted Error

After you have got back data, you can format the USB to fix the not formatted error. The easiest way to format your USB is to use EaseUS free partition tool. This free tool can format a USB flash drive like Sandisk, Kingston, Panasonic, Lexar, Samsung, Sony, etc easily in all complex cases. You can try the following guide to format your USB drive in simple steps. 

Step 1: Select the USB drive to format.

Connect the USB drive or pen drive to your computer. Download and launch EaseUS partition software. Right-click the USB drive you intend to format and choose "Format".

Format Hard Drive Partition - Step 1

Step 2: Set the drive letter and file system.

Assign a new partition label, file system (NTFS/FAT32/EXT2/EXT3), and cluster size to the selected partition, then click "OK".

Format Hard Drive Partition - Step 2

Step 3: Check the warning box.

Click "OK" if you see the Warning window. If you have important data on it, back up the data in advance.

Format Hard Drive Partition - Step 3

Step 4: Apply the changes.

Click the "Execute operation" button first, and then click "Apply" to format the USB drive.

Format Hard Drive Partition - Step 4

Part 3. Back Up Files to Protect Data

Creating a full backup by imaging using EaseUS Todo Backup and is pretty common for more advanced computer users, but it’s recommended for all users to keep backups in case of crashes or hardware failures. 

To back up files with this free Windows backup and recovery software, you just need to download it and follow details below:

Step 1: Open EaseUS Todo Backup and select "File Backup".

You may have a large amount of vital data to be protected as time goes on, such as documents, pictures, music, and videos, etc. It is always a good habit to have a backup on a regular basis. File Backup is one of the best choices for you to get over unexpected data loss.

Step 2: Select the files that you want to back up.

If you just want to back up one or some specific file types from one folder, the option at the top right corner can help you exclude the other files.

Step 3: Select a destination to save your backup file. 

You'd better create the backup file in some other storage media or in some other drive. If not, there may be a risk of the backup file getting corrupted or destroyed.

Step 4: Click "Proceed" to execute your operation.

click file backup to back up files
 
 

100% of people found this article helpful.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Why choose EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard?

"EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard is the best we've seen. It's far from perfect, partly because today's advanced disk technology makes data-recovery more difficult than it was with the simpler technology of the past, but it's fast and efficient..."PCMag

"The first thing you'll notice about EaseUS Data Recovery Wizard Pro is that its interface is very clear and uncluttered, with only a small collection of self-explanatory controls. You won't find lots of extra options hidden in a system of hidden menus, either; what you see really is what you get."techradar

"Recover lost files, even after deleting a partition or formatting your drive."Macworld

2. Why cannot I recover 2GB data for free?

It is recommended to check the version installed is Free or Trial because they are different versions.

Trial has data preview function but cannot save any files, while the Free version enables to recover 2 GB files. The default free space is 500 MB and you may share the product on social media to get another 1.5 GB.

3. Why cannot the recovered files be opened?

A file is saved as 2 parts on the storage device: directory info (which is comprised by file name, time stamp and size info, etc.) and data content.

If the files with original file names and folder structures cannot be opened, one possible reason is the corrupted directory info. There is still a chance to recover the data content with the RAW Recovery method in our software.

4. Why isn't it suggested to recover the files back to the original drive?

The storage structure of the lost files would be altered or damaged by any changes on the drive. If you save the recovered files back to the same drive, the original data structures and data content would be corrupted or overwritten, which causes permanent data loss. So you should prepare another disk to save the files.

5. How can I check whether my data is recoverable or not before purchase?

The Free version helps you save 2GB files to better verify the recovery quality of our product before purchase.

6. How long does it take to scan the drive?

It strongly depends on the capacity of your hard drive and the performance of your computer. As reference,most drive recoveries can be completed in around 10 to 12 hours for a 1-TB healthy hard drive in general conditions.

About Data Recovery Wizard

It's super easy to recover 250+ types of files after deletion, disk formatting and virus infection. Click the links and compare the difference of each version.