Reformatting a USB stick that shows up as two devices?

Kim Goldenberg kgoldenberg at
Fri Nov 21 14:43:02 UTC 2008

Derek Broughton wrote:
> Adam Funk wrote:
>> On 2008-11-21, Neil wrote:
>>> What is the exact brand and type of the disk?
>> All it says:
>>         integral
>>          128 MB
>>    USB 2.0 Flash Drive
>>> It may be as people have already suggested: 2 separate disks for some
>>> reason (most probably), but it may be that the same disk is displayed
>>> twice for some reason. Have you actually written files to the disk?
>>> If these files apear in both disks you should forget about it, it's
>>> just irritating and a minor incompatibility problem between the stick
>>> and Linux.
>> No, they really act like two different drives, on Linux, Windows, and
>> Mac OS X.
> I'm really surprised that nobody has used the term "U3".  Ken Loafman 
> seems to have it right, though he didn't mention it.  It's almost 
> certainly a U3 drive, which basically has a small read-only partition 
> which, on Windows, appears as a CD drive and controls access to the 
> larger partition.  They can usually be reformatted, but is it really 
> worth it?

There is a Windows-only reformatter that will "undo" the U3 partitioning 
and make the flash drive one partition again, but be warned that it will 
delete everything on the drive. If it is important to you, you can 
probably find a friend who will let you put it on their Windows machine 
and reformat it for you. I used my son's machine to reformat mine.


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