How to format an infected USB Drive?

7ewis

Novice Member
Hi, just a quick question.. I have a USB stick that is meant to be 16GB, but it actually only 4GB, after working this out I had tried to make it know that it was only 4GB but couldn't work out how to do it, but thats another story :p

Bascically I got a virus on this memory stick somehow so I want to know how I can put it into my laptop without transferring over the virus again and format the drive. I don't care about what's on it, just want it back to normal. And preferably 4GB if anyone knows how to do this?

Thanks
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
Are you sure you didn't just format it as FAT16 which has a 4GB limit?

The drive should be safe in theory with autorun turned off but to make doubly sure I'd either boot a dedicated partitioning program (e.g. gParted) or a Linux LiveCD (viruses are often OS specific).
 

7ewis

Novice Member
Yeah, I think it must have been advertised as 16GB to make a profit as it is actually 4.. My dad bought it for me at christmas last year from ebay lol so it probably is dodgy. A while ago I tried fixing it and formatted it using the basic windows function to FAT32 but it was still screwed up thinking it was 16GB..

Ok, I'm going to get the new Ubuntu soon, but not sure how I want it, because I hardly ever use it and am not sure I want to dual boot it again. Would put it on that USB stick but its got the virus on it :p
 

noisemaker

Novice Member
whats the model of your usb drive? maybe we can help.
 

7ewis

Novice Member
I don't know, its just small plain and silver with a little 16GB sticker on it, probably some mass produced crap lol,

I think it was called some generic name when I bought it too :/
 

Matt_C

Distinguished Member
Unlikely its a virus, just a "fake" flash stick. Loads going about like that - I bought one off ebay a couple years ago (matches your description completely) that was supposed to be 8GB and is actually 4. It shows as 8gb in Windows (never tried it in my Mac) but try to write more than 4gb to it and it corrupts and can't be erased.
 

7ewis

Novice Member
yeah, but i can erase mine too.. how do you disable autorun? WOuld that make it completely safe?

I think I put the virus on there with Hirens Boot CD somehow
 

next010

Distinguished Member
Use gparted live CD (burn to disc with Imgburn), it's a mini linux OS with a GUI that allows erasing/creating partitions just delete the partition off the USB drive and that's all there is to it.
 

EndlessWaves

Distinguished Member
I would format the drive rather than just deleting the partition.

Restricting the drive to 4GB should be simple, just create a 4GB partition and leave the rest unpartitioned.
 

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