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How do I reformat an unmountable/unrecognised/unformatted USB drive? It will not mount or format on Windows Vista or OSX Tiger.

  • Disk Utility sees the hardware, but no partition to mount.
  • Testdisk does not see it at all.
  • USB Probe gives me the info:

    SM3252A Memory Bar, but externally it is a 4GB HP memory stick

  • fdisk dev/disk2 gives me:

    /dev/disk2 is not a character device or a regular file

  • & fdisk dev/rdisk2 gives me:

    Disk: /dev/rdisk2       geometry: 0/4/63 [0 sectors]
    Signature: 0x0
             Starting       Ending
     #: id  cyl  HD sec -  cyl  HD sec [     start -       size]
    ------------------------------------------------------------------------
     1: 00    0   0   0 -    0   0   0 [         0 -          0] unused      
     2: 00    0   0   0 -    0   0   0 [         0 -          0] unused      
     3: 00    0   0   0 -    0   0   0 [         0 -          0] unused      
     4: 00    0   0   0 -    0   0   0 [         0 -          0] unused      
    

I'd prefer to do this on OS X or the Unix shell, but any suggestions for a solution on Vista would be welcome too, or Linux for that matter.

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3  
If Disk Utility sees it can't you create a partition and format it from there, or try the same with gparted? –  Dennis Oct 5 '11 at 19:10
    
Might check out parted, gnu.org/software/parted/manual/html_mono/parted.html, command line *nix partition utility. –  jmreicha Oct 5 '11 at 19:16
    
I don't understand the point. You can buy a new one for under $10. –  Daniel R Hicks Oct 5 '11 at 19:52
1  
Are you sure /dev/disk2 is the name of your usb device? What is the output of fdisk -l –  Prahlad Yeri Mar 2 '13 at 14:37
    
i have recovered a LOT a nearly-going-to-the-trash-can flash drives using gparted on linux, simply by destroying the partition tables and rewritting them and then formatting. is this an applicable solution? –  Lorenzo Von Matterhorn Apr 4 '13 at 2:16

1 Answer 1

Not sure, but can dd command be of any help?

http://hints.macworld.com/article.php?story=20050302225659382

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