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How to Format a Bootable USB Drive in Windows 10

Updated by Tracy King on Nov 28, 2022
Written by Daisy

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Solution 1. EaseUS Partition Master Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master, right-click the partition on your external hard drive/USB/SD card...Full steps
Solution 2. Disk Management Step 1. When you run Windows PC, connect your bootable USB drive to it...Full steps
Solution 3. Diskpart command Step 1. Press "Windows key + R" simultaneously, type cmd in the search box and open "Command Prompt"...Full steps

"Hi, I'm thinking about formatting a bootable USB drive in Windows 10, but it's so weird that the USB drive is now showing several MBs capacity. It should be a 4GB size in total. What should I do to format the bootable USB drive properly and restore its full capacity?"

Solution 1. Format bootable USB drive with EaseUS Partition Master

EaseUS Partition Master is a free partition manager software that allows users to fully manage their hard drive storage. It's also a reliable and free USB formatting tool that helps to format a bootable USB drive, memory card, pen drive, and other hard disk storage devices easily and quickly without losing the original size.

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Download and install EaseUS Partition Master on your Windows computer and follow the steps below to perform the storage device formatting with ease.

Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master, right-click the partition on your external hard drive/USB/SD card which you want to format and choose the "Format" option.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 1

Step 2. Assign a new partition label, file system (NTFS/FAT32/EXT2/EXT3/EXT4/exFAT), and cluster size to the selected partition, then click "OK".

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 2

Step 3. In the Warning window, click "Yes" to continue.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 3

Step 4. Click the "Execute 1 Task(s)" button in the top-left corner to review the changes, then click "Apply" to start formatting your external hard drive/USB/SD card.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 4

Solution 2. How to Format Bootable Pendrive in Windows 10 via Disk Management

On Windows, you can utilize two bootable USB drive format utilities: Disk Management and Command Prompt. There introduces Disk Management to solve how to format a bootable USB in Windows 10.

First, when you run Windows PC, connect your bootable USB drive to it. Second, press "Windows + R" to open disk management on the pop-up window. Third, right-click the bootable drive and choose "Format".

format drive in disk management

Solution 3. Format bootable USB drive by using Diskpart command

It's also practical to use the diskpart command to format your USB drive. If you are quite familiar with the use or command prompt, this method is also a good choice for you.

Step 1: Press "Windows key + R" simultaneously, type cmd in the search box and open "Command Prompt".

Step 2: Type diskpart. Run the Pop-up window that appears.

Step 3: Type list disk.

Step 4: Type select disk 0 (or disk 1... the number is the drive of the bootable USB that is going to be formatted).

Step 5: type clean.

Step 6: Type create partition primary

Step 7: Go to "My Computer" or "This PC" (Windows 10), right-click on the bootable USB drive and select the "Format" option to format it.

The two methods given above will help to format a bootable USB drive successfully and restore it to original condition.

format bootable usb drive via cmd

Bonus Tip: How to Make a Bootable USB Drive

Speaking of making a bootable drive, some of you focus on two targets to finish the making process. One is for resizing partition, and the other helps you bring the Windows system back to a healthy environment when it corrupted or failed to boot. The below guide suits to resize partitions with EaseUS Partition Master. If you want to deploy the Windows system, check to create boot disks on another guide.

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Step 1. To create a bootable disk of EaseUS Partition Master, you should prepare a storage media, like a USB drive, flash drive or a CD/DVD disc. Then, correctly connect the drive to your computer.

Step 2. Launch EaseUS Partition Master, and find the "Bootable Media" feature on the left. Click on it.

Step 3. You can choose the USB or CD/DVD when the drive is available. However, if you do not have a storage device at hand, you can also save the ISO file to a local drive, and later burn it to a storage media. Once made the option, click the "Create" button to begin.

  • Check the Warning message and click "Yes".

When the process finishes, you have successfully created an EaseUS Partition Master WinPE bootable disk. Now, you can manage your hard disks and partitions through the bootable drive whenever the computer fails to boot normally.

If you have RAID drives, load the RAID driver first by clicking Add Driver from the menu bar, which can help you add the driver of your device under WinPE environment, as some specific device cannot be recognized under WinPE environment without drivers installed, such as RAID or some specific hard disk.

Final Verdict

On this page, we collected 3 efficient methods to help you format bootable USB to a normal state and reuse it to store files and transfer data normally again. Among the three methods, EaseUS Partition Master offers the easiest formatting solution to Windows beginners.

If you are the one who need a simple guide to make a bootable USB work as a normal USB drive to save files again, turn to EaseUS Partition Master for help.

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FAQs About Format Bootable USB Windows 10

If you have further questions about formatting bootable USB drive on Windows computer, follow and find answers here below:

1. What format should a bootable USB be for Windows 10?

To make a bootable USB drive for Windows10, the best format should be FAT32 as Windows system requries it to be FAT32 on USB drive.

2. How do I format a botoable USB drive?

  • Connect the bootable USB to Windows 10 computer.
  • Launch EaseUS Partition Master and right-click on the bootable USB.
  • Select "Format" and set FAT32 (32GB or smaller) or exFAT (64GB or larger) to the USB drive.
  • Click "OK" and "Execute Task".

3. Should Windows 10 bootable USB FAT32 or NTFS?

When you plan to create a Windows 10 bootble USB drive, you need to set the file system as FAT32 as ther modern UEFI-based hardware requries a FAT32 to install Windows 10. 

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About the Author

Updated by Tracy King

Tracy joined in EaseUS in 2013 and has been working with EaseUS content team for over 7 years. Being enthusiastic in computing and technology, she writes tech how-to articles and share technical solutions about Windows & Mac data recovery, file/system backup and recovery, partition management and iOS/Android data recovery.

Read full bio

Written by Daisy

Daisy is the Senior editor of the writing team for EaseUS. She has been working in EaseUS for over ten years, starting from a technical writer to a team leader of the content group. As a professional author for over 10 years, she writes a lot to help people overcome their tech troubles.

Read full bio

Product Reviews

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  • I love that the changes you make with EaseUS Partition Master Free aren't immediately applied to the disks. It makes it way easier to play out what will happen after you've made all the changes. I also think the overall look and feel of EaseUS Partition Master Free makes whatever you're doing with your computer's partitions easy.

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  • Partition Master Free can Resize, Move, Merge, Migrate, and Copy disks or partitions; convert to local, change label, defragment, check and explore partition; and much more. A premium upgrade adds free tech support and the ability to resize dynamic volumes.

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  • It won't hot image your drives or align them, but since it's coupled with a partition manager, it allows you do perform many tasks at once, instead of just cloning drives. You can move partitions around, resize them, defragment, and more, along with the other tools you'd expect from a cloning tool.

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