I hope this is the right place to post this.

I have an SP brand 32GB USB flash drive. When it was brand new I installed the TAILS OS on it and it seemed to create a bootable EFI system partition of 8GB on it, at least that's what Windows 10 Disk manager says.

Then I used Windows 7 to look at it, as I was missing 20.87GB of storage that was on the drive but not on the partition.

Then I used Windows 10 Disk Manager to make the unused 20.87GB part into a partition of an NTFS file system. Now I have 2 partitions on the same flash drive and can't use the 8gb partition on Windows.

How do I make the whole flash drive one big 28GB partition?

Via Windows 10 Disk manager I cannot do a thing with the 8GB EFI partition that TAILS created, I can't delete it or expand it. I even tried installing AOMEI partition software (free version) and could not do a thing with that either.

I've been searching web pages for about 3 hours now and have not found a solution. Other pages on the web and on here talk about similar issues but not about how to remove the EFI partition so the NTFS partition can expand to use all available space on the flash drive.

I can't use FDISK on cmd.exe because that requires a drive letter and in this case, the NTFS partition has a drive letter but not the EFI part of the flash drive. So fdisk won't affect the EFI partition.

  1. A single FAT32 partition would be fine, whatever works with Windows 7, 8 and 10.
  2. I'm fine losing all data on this flash drive and just making it one big partition.


EDIT: Diskpart in Windows 10 displays this info:

DISKPART> list disk

  Disk ###  Status         Size     Free     Dyn  Gpt
  --------  -------------  -------  -------  ---  ---
  Disk 0    Online          118 GB      0 B
  Disk 1    Online          931 GB      0 B
  Disk 2    Online           28 GB  1024 KB        *

When I selected disk 2, partition 1 (first partition) and tried to delete it I get this error:

Virtual Disk Service error: Cannot delete a protected partition without the force protected parameter set.

  • Any partition manager software should be able to create a new partition table. Once done you can create partitions inside in any way you want.
    – user931000
    Aug 16, 2019 at 17:38

2 Answers 2


The article How to Delete EFI System Partition in Windows recommends using diskpart for deleting the partition, as follows.

The first step is to change the partition id, in effect converting it from EFI to data:

list disk          (displays all disks)
sel disk N         (select the EFI disk by its number N)
list partition     (displays all partitions including EFI)
sel partition N    (select the EFI partition by its number N)
SET ID=ebd0a0a2-b9e5-4433-87c0-68b6b72699c7

Once this is done, to delete the EFI partition with diskpart:

delete partition override

If successful, you will get the message "DiskPart successfully deleted the selected partition". Use the exit command to close diskpart.

  • Thank you. Ok, no errors deleting partition via win 10 diskpart. I think I have to delete both partitions before I can reformat it as one partition. Hold on.
    – Bulrush
    Aug 16, 2019 at 17:45
  • 1
    Ok it worked! :) I formatted it as an NTFS drive. Will Windows 7 and 8 be able to work with this drive, create, delete, and edit files on it?
    – Bulrush
    Aug 16, 2019 at 17:50
  • 2
    There shouldn't be any problem with a one-partition NTFS drive.
    – harrymc
    Aug 16, 2019 at 17:51

Reformat the drive with Rufus which is free and Open Source. Set Boot Selection to Non bootable
Set File system to NTFS Choose Quick format then [Start].

Rufus acreenshot

  • thanks, this acutally helps after trying to format it with windows, linux, assign the letter or other formating 3rd party tools. Rufus fixed it.
    – troger19
    Sep 8, 2021 at 18:08

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