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Windows was unable to complete the format: 2 Fixes

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Formatting drives, especially smaller ones is a quick way of getting rid of any data and at times, malware as well. Windows itself makes the process quite simple. All you have to do is right-click the drive and click format.

However, at times Windows can run into errors while trying to format a drive. In this article, we’re taking a look at why this happens and how to fix this problem.

Why does this happen?

There are a number of reasons why Windows might not be able to format a given drive. Some of the most popular ones are as follows:

  • The drive is write-protected.
  • There’s physical damage to the drive.
  • Bad sectors.
  • Malware or virus preventing a write operation.
  • No drive letter allocated.

Also read: How to format an SD card in Linux?

How to fix this

Here are a few solutions you can take to fix the problem.

Format using the Command Prompt

Formatting using the command prompt can completely purge the drive of any data. Here’s how.

Step 1: Press Windows key + R to open the Run prompt. Type cmd and hit enter.

Step 2: Type the format command using the following syntax.

format [drive letter] /fs:[file system]

For example, if you want to format the D drive with FAT32, you’ll use the following command.

format D: /fs:fat32

Using Disk Management

If you’d rather stick to a graphical interface, you can try using the Disk Management tool as well.

Step 1: Press Windows key + X to access the Quick Access menu. Click on Disk Management.

Step 2: Select the drive you want to format, right-click it and click Format.

Also read: What is APC index mismatch in Windows 10? 5 Fixes