I was installing (at the stage of "copying files...") Linux Mint from a SD card with uncompressed .iso file in a USB Flash drive (it already had installed an old version of LM) when the current went off.
I couldn't install it again.

gParted does not load drives if the flash drive is already installed. I have to remove it and then plug the drive. Then it loads the device, does not show partition sde1 and all options are greyed but options
1) Device -> Create Partition.
2) Device -> Attempt data rescue
3) Format -> ext4 selected but got held despite "it might take a long time"

I tried format it in Mac and Windows unsuccessfully (as FAT32).

At Ubuntu 18.04

dmesg Summary output

sudo lsblk -f /dev/sde
[sudo] password for user: 
NAME   FSTYPE  LABEL                           UUID                                 MOUNTPOINT
sde    iso9660 Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon 64-bit 2019-12-13-16-58-44-00               
└─sde1 ext4    Linux Mint 19.3 Cinnamon 64-bit 0937a8f9-54d3-4705-ba68-73cb4e6bedeb 
sudo fsck -p /dev/sde1    
fsck from util-linux 2.31.1    
/dev/sde1: recovering journal    

hanged up for several hours

sudo lsblk -m /dev/sde    
sde    29,8G root  disk  brw-rw----
└─sde1 29,8G root  disk  brw-rw----

sudo mount /dev/sde1 /mnt doesn't work

 lsusb -v           
Bus 001 Device 006: ID 05dc:a83a Lexar Media, Inc. 
Couldn't open device, some information will be missing

I installed mksub. Tried options "restore to a standtard storage device" and "wipe a device" a but always the procedure got held for a long time

sudo dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sde bs=1M count=40 and any of dd variations get held

  • Do you need to recover any data from the USB drive? If not, it's time to get a new one. They do die sometimes. Feb 14 '20 at 20:50
  • I don't need to recover any data. I installed Linux Mint on it 2 years ago but I used 3 times for a very short time during this period
    – dstonek
    Feb 14 '20 at 20:53
  • It isn't clear to me if you meant that gParted option "1) Device -> Create Partition" is available because "but" means "except" in that sentence. If it is, then that's the option to choose. Feb 14 '20 at 20:58
  • See that the partition sde1 is already created sudo lsblk -f /dev/sde as ext4 format. That option to Create Partition only has MSDOS and other non usual formats. I had tried that but also gparted freezed
    – dstonek
    Feb 14 '20 at 21:02
  • Yes, it's not worth insisting if there's no simple solution. Actually the problem was a faulty USB connection on a laptop: one small movement and ...
    – dstonek
    Feb 14 '20 at 21:13

Try the GNOME Disk Utility https://wiki.gnome.org/Apps/Disks which has been able to fix flash drives gparted could not.

  • I forgot I had Disks installed. It seems that there's no way to fix that. Tried Fix and now Format. This device turns on a blue light when it is accessed. This happens some seconds, then.... darkness!
    – dstonek
    Feb 14 '20 at 22:56
  • 1
    Speaking of darkness, you could try using DiskPart in a Windows Command Prompt. partitionwizard.com/partitionmagic/how-to-format-ssd.html (instructions for SSD also work in this instance for USB flash drive). Again it has fixed some misbehaving USB flash drives sometimes.
    – K7AAY
    Feb 14 '20 at 23:14
  • Also no way. I tried some options like Format, Delete partition, Wipe... After a second "operation successful" but it is not
    – dstonek
    Feb 15 '20 at 18:45
  • As Doctor McCoy would say, "It's dead."
    – K7AAY
    Feb 15 '20 at 23:10

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