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Instruction for SanDisk Write Protection Removal and Formatting Tool

Updated by Roxanne on Nov 08, 2021
Written by Brithny

This page covers complete solutions to help you resolve "How to remove write protection from SanDisk pen drive" issue in two parts. If your SanDisk device is write protected, follow to unlock it now:

These methods also work to remove write protection from SanDisk Cuzer, SanDisk Ultra, SanDisk Adapter, etc., serials of USB, SD, external hard drives on Windows 10/8/7/XP/Vista for free.

SanDisk Write Protected Error and Its Causes

"The SanDisk SD card in my digital camera won't let me delete or take pictures. So I want a SanDisk repair tool to fix the problem. When I did the job using the Windows disk management tool, it shows write protected error. How do I get my SanDisk memory card off write-protect!?"

"I bought a 128GB SanDisk Ultra USB 3.0 flash drive. But when I tried to reformat it for other usages, Windows says 'the Disk is Write Protected'. How can I remove the write protection from the Sandisk USB flash drive and format it successfully?"

"I cannot format my Sandisk pen drive because it is write-protected. Is there any Sandisk write protected removal tool that can help to format write protected pen drive?"

Sandisk writes protected error usually happens when you trying to format a Sandisk storage device. It is an issue that has disturbed lots of users for a long time. What makes the SanDisk devices write protected? Here are the main causes that you should learn first and then find the respective write protection removal tool to get rid of this error efficiently:

  • Locked SanDisk storage device displays as write-protected
  • SanDisk device gets infected by virus or malware
  • The device gets encrypted by third-party write protection software
  • SanDisk device contains bad sectors
  • Physical damage

Have you ever encountered such a similar Sandisk write protected issue? Now, it is no longer a problem. Pick up one of the following listed SanDisk write protection removal tools, you can remove the write protection from the Sandisk device and then format it with ease.

Note: To get rid of the write protection error from your SanDisk device and make the device work again, you will need to use the recommended write protection removal tools in Part 1 at first, and then format it to a recognized status using formatting utility in Part 2. 

Part 1. Remove Write Protection from Sandisk USB/Pen Drive/SD Card 

If your SanDisk USB, pen drive, or SD card is physically locked, unlock your device first.  
If the device becomes accessible after turning the switch to ON, you can open the SanDisk device and make use of your data again.
If the device still displays "The disk is write protected" error, pick up one SanDisk write protection removal tool to clear the error immediately.

Here we collected 4 write protection removal tools. You can pick up the right one and follow the tutorials below to bring your SanDisk USB pen drive or SD card, etc. come back to life:

  1. 1. Run Anti-Virus or Virus Removal Software
  2. 2. Run DiskPart CMD Command 
  3. 3. Use CMD Alternative Tool
  4. 4. Use Registry Editor
  5. 5. Use File Explorer Properties Settings

Let's check how to remove write protection from SanDisk USB, pen drive, SD card, etc. with each tool now. 

Method 1. Clear Write Protection from SanDisk using Anti-Virus/Virus Removal Software

Applies to: Clear up SanDisk storage devices that display write-protected due to virus infection or malware encryption.

Sometimes, viruses or malware may infect and encrypt a SanDisk storage device, making it inaccessible, displaying as write-protected. The most effective way is to run anti-virus or virus removal software to clear the write protection from SanDisk devices.

Here is a list of 2020 best anti-virus software for you to try and clear device write protection:

  • Norton Antivirus
  • McAfee
  • ESET NOD32
  • Avast
  • AVG

Step 1. Download and install anti-virus or malware removal tool on your computer.

Step 2. Connect or insert the write-protected SanDisk device to PC.

Step 3. Run anti-virus or virus removal software to scan and clean up the SanDisk storage device.

When the cleaning process completes, you can open SanDisk storage device and make use of the saved data again.

Method 2. Unlock SanDisk Write-Protected Device using CMD

Applies to: Unlock write-protected SanDisk device using DiskPart CMD command for free.

CMD attribute disk clear command is a free and practical resolution that you can apply to fix write protected Sandisk SD card or USB flash drive.

As CMD write protection removal commands require to clear the whole device, which may result in data loss, we would like to recommend you run data recovery software to bring the lost files back.

Connect your SanDisk device to your computer, and follow to remove the write protection in a few simple steps:

Step 1.  Press "Windows + R" and enter cmd. Open Command Prompt as Administrator.

Step 2. Type diskpart and hit Enter.

Step 3. Type the following command lines and hit Enter each time:

  • list disk
  • select disk # (# is the number of your SanDisk USB/SD card/SSD drive that you want to remove write protection from.)
  • attributes disk clear readonly

Remove write protection using diskpart command.

Step 4. Type exit and hit Enter to close DiskPart.

When the above process completes, re-connect your Sandisk USB flash drive or pen drive again, and you will find the write protection is removed. The device is no longer write-protected.

Method 3. Using CMD Alternative - SanDisk Write-Protection Removal Tool

Applies to: Remove write protection from SanDisk storage devices using CMD alternative, one-click write-protection removal tool.

Being similar to CMD disk attribute clear command, EaseUS CleanGenius is an all-in-one SanDisk write-protection removal tool to unlock your SanDisk storage devices.

If you don't consider yourself a pro-computer user and you're not familiar with command-lines, don't worry. There are graphical-based solutions to help you remove write-protection from your hard drives, USB drives, and even SD cards.

EaseUS CleanGenius is one of these tools that helps you fix aforementioned issues on your drives without knowing a thing about command-line.

Here's an easy-to-follow guide on how to use this tool to get your issues sorted:

Step 1: DOWNLOAD and install EaseUS CleanGenius (free) on your computer.

Step 2: Run EaseUS CleanGenius on your PC, select Optimization and choose the Write Protection mode.

disable write protection

Step 3: Select the device that is write-protected and click Disable to remove the protection.

Disable Write Protection from storage devices.

Method 4. Remove Write Protection from SanDisk Pen Drive using Regedit.exe

Applies to: Manually remove write protection from SanDisk pen drive, USB, SD, etc. using Registry Editor - Regedit.exe, free.

Note that Registry Editor - Regedit.exe is a Windows built-in tool for executing some advanced computer management operations on a computer. If you are not familiar with Registry Editor, try the above 3 methods.

Any false operation may cause programs or Windows features to malfunction. Be very careful with the following write protection removal steps:

Step 1. Click "Start", type Regedit in the search box.

Click "Regedit.exe" to open the Registry editor when you see it is displayed at the top of the list.

Step 2. And then navigate to the following key: 


Step 3. Double-click on the WriteProtect value in the right-hand pane of Regedit.exe.

Change the Value data from 1 to 0 and click "OK" to save the change. 

set the value data as 0

Step 4. Close Regedit and restart your computer.

Method 5. Uncheck Read-Only Status, Remove File Write Protection

Applies to: Remove write protection from Read-only file that misleads users to believe the device is write-protected.

Sometimes, when a single file is with Read-only state will prevent you from visiting it. It may also mislead users to believe that the device is currently write-protected. 

Here is a quick way to remove the read-only status, removal file write protection on your SanDisk or other brands of storage devices:

Step 1. Connect SanDisk device to your computer, open and right-click the file with write protection error.

Step 2. Click "Properties" and go to the General tab, check the Attributes option on the bottom.

Step 3. Uncheck the "Read-only" option and click "Apply" to save this change.

unckeck read only on a single file

When you are done with the write protection removal steps, it is not the end yet.

To make your device ready and secure for saving data again, it's highly necessary to reset the SanDisk file system by formatting. In Part 2, you can format the Sandisk device as normal in only a few clicks using a third-party free formatting tool - EaseUS Partition Master Free Edition.

Part 2. Format Sandisk Device after Removing Write Protection 

Applies to: Format inaccessible, unopenable, RAW SanDisk USB, flash drive, pen drive, SD card, external hard drive, etc., to reusable again.

Before the formatting, if you can access the SanDisk, remember to copy and back up your data to another secure location in case of data loss.

Note that the free format tool is unable to format a write-protected device directly, which means you have to remove the Sandisk write protection first. 

In this part, we will recommend a free formatting tool EaseUS Partition Master Free to assist you in formatting an SD card, USB flash drive, pen drive, and other storage devices after you remove the write protection.

Download SanDisk write protected format tool to solve the write-protected issue. Insert your SanDisk USB/flash drive/pen drive/SD card/external hard drive to your PC, then right-click write-protected SanDisk drive and select "Format" option.

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Let's check how to format your unlocked SanDisk USB pen drive, SD card, etc. to reusable again:

  • Right-click the external drive or USB you intend to format and choose "Format".
  • Set the Partition label, File system (NTFS/FAT32/EXT2/EXT3/EXT4/exFAT), and Cluster size, then click "OK".
  • Click "OK" to continue.
  • Click the "Execute Operation" button and click "Apply" to format the hard drive partition.

When you finish the formatting, your SanDisk storage device is secure for saving data again with no write protection issue. You may save your files back to the SanDisk device again.

If you lost files after formatting, don't worry. You can try reliable SanDisk recovery software to help you fully recover lost files after formatting. 


Being efficient, safe and easy, the above guide is the best solution to remove write protection from the SanDisk pen drive. You can try it with no hesitation whenever you have Sandisk write protected issue using a Sandisk write protected removal tool & write-protected format tool.

People Also Ask

This page covers three solutions for removing write protection error from SanDisk pen drive, USB flash drive, memory card or SSD disk. Some people also have questions about write protection removal issues.

If you're having the same concerns, follow and check the answers below the following questions:

1. Why does my SanDisk says write protected?

Usually, when SanDisk device says write-protected, it is locked by the following reasons:

  • 1). SanDisk device locking switch is ON.
  • 2). SanDisk USB, pen drive, SD card, external/internal disk is encrypted by password.
  • 3). SanDisk device is write-protected by viruses or malware.

2. How do I remove write protection from online?

The best way to remove write protection from online is to select the right tool and solution for your device. We would like to recommend you to get rid of this issue with the next two steps:

Step 1. Select a reliable write-protection removal tool online.

As recommended on this page, Regedit.exe, third-party write-protection removal tool or CMD can all help to clean write protection from the SanDisk device.

Step 2. Format devices to reusable again.

3. How can I remove write protection from my SanDisk pen drive Windows 10?

This page offers the complete solution of removing write protection from the SanDisk pen drive. The solutions are applicable for Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP. 

First, you need to choose a reliable tool to remove the write protection from SanDisk pen drive.

As recommended on this page, Regedit.exe, Write-protection removal tool or CMD command in Part 1 can all work. 

Next, you need to format the device ready for saving data again.

4. How do you remove write protection on a USB stick?

If you are using a SanDisk USB stick that has a lock switch, make sure the Lock switch on the left side is slid up (unlock position). Otherwise, you will NOT be able to modify or delete the contents on the memory card if it is locked.

If the lock is Off but the USB is still write-protected, you can use DiskPart command, Registry or write-protection removal tool to unlock your device with ease. For a detailed guide, follow to remove write protection on USB

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Updated by Roxanne

Roxanne is one of the main contributors to EaseUS and has created multiple posts on digital devices like PCs, Mobile phones, tablets, Mac, etc. She loves to share ideas with people of the same interest.

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Written by Brithny

Brithny is a technology enthusiast, aiming to make readers' tech life easy and enjoyable. She loves exploring new technologies and writing technical how-to tips. On her spare time, she loves sharing things about her favorite singer - Taylor Swift on her Facebook or Twitter.

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