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My situation:

/dev/sda1
/dev/sda2

/dev/sdb1 - ~4TB

I need to format the drive /dev/sdb1
What do I need to format / clear the data from such a large drive?
What command?

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2 Answers 2

It depends on which filesystem you want to use, for example using ext4:

sudo mkfs.ext4 /dev/sdb1
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The easiest way would be to recreate the file system:

sudo mkfs.ext3 /dev/sdb1

From man mkfs:

mke2fs is used to create an ext2, ext3, or ext4 filesystem, usually in a disk
partition.  device is the  special file corresponding to the device 
(e.g /dev/hdXX).  blocks-count is the number of blocks on the device.  If omit‐
ted, mke2fs automagically figures the file system size.  If called as mkfs.ext3 
a journal is created as  if  the -j option was specified.

The  defaults of the parameters for the newly created filesystem, if not over-
ridden by the options listed below, are controlled by the /etc/mke2fs.conf
configuration file.  See the mke2fs.conf(5) manual page for more details.
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