How do you format a write protected USB drive?

Discussion in 'OS X El Capitan (10.11)' started by seasurfer, Jul 18, 2016.

  1. seasurfer, Jul 18, 2016
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2016

    seasurfer macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2007
    #1
    I am using 10.11.5.

    I have a USB drive that is write protected, I like to format it now as the old contents have no more use to me.

    How do I do that? I tried using disk utility and it does not work.

    Thanks.
     
  2. Shirasaki macrumors 603

    Shirasaki

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    #2
    You need to figure out how to remove write protection before formatting. Formatting disk needs something to be written on that disk.
     
  3. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #3
    What does Disk Utility say? Are you trying to Partition (or format), or Erase using DU?
     
  4. seasurfer thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2007
    #4
    It got dismounted after I click format. That is how I found out it is write protected.
     
  5. Ant3000 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2015
    Location:
    UK
    #5
    Does going to File>get info offer any clues as to how it is protected?
     
  6. simonsi macrumors 601

    simonsi

    Joined:
    Jan 3, 2014
    Location:
    Auckland
    #6
    Sorry I'm not aware of any write protecting (other than a hardware switch as you can get on SD cards), that survives a format, what makes you sure that is the problem?
     
  7. Shirasaki macrumors 603

    Shirasaki

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    #7
    If this write protection is implemented in hardware level, then such write protection can survive format. I still could remember back to 2000, there were many USB sticks, capacity from 32MB to 256MB, equipped with hardware write protection lock. Nowadays, almost every single SD card has write protection switch. Turn it on, then you cannot change anything stored on card anymore. Sometimes, if that switch is broken, either card cannot be write protected, or card cannot write anything to it anymore.
     

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