How to convert RAW to FAT32 without data loss?

Directly changing RAW file system to FAT32 may cause data loss. It's better get files off the RAW hard drive using iBoysoft Data Recovery before you convert the RAW file system to FAT32, exFAT, or other file system.

By Juno | Posted to Home > Data Recovery Tips, updated on January 6th, 2021 |

Are you facing the same RAW issue as the user below?

I have recently discovered that I cannot access my USB flash drive (FAT32 formatted). When I try to open it on Windows computer, I receive a pop-up message saying "This drive is not formatted, would you like to format it?" It shows as RAW when I check in Disk Management.

Well, you need a way to convert RAW to FAT32 so that you can access this drive again.

Convert RAW to FAT32 - a feasible way to fix RAW file system

FAT32 file system is widely used on various storage devices, such as USB flash drives, SD cards, memory cards and other external hard drives. But sometimes, your drive which is originally formatted with FAT32 file system may become RAW due to unexpected damage.

RAW file system is not a recognizeable type of file system, like FAT32, exFAT, NTFS or HFS+ file system, but the state when the file system of a drive has been lost or can't be recognized by the Operating System.

As a result, you can't open or access data inside a raw USB flash drive, raw memory card, or raw external hard drive.

You may ask, is there any way to change RAW file system to FAT32?

There are three methods to do this on your Windows computer.

  • 1. Convert RAW to fat32 using cmd
  • 2. Change RAW to fat32 without losing data
  • 3. Format RAW to fat32

Convert RAW to FAT32 using command line

The first method is to use DiskPart to fix RAW partitions by running command in CMD directly or input orders.

  • 1. Go to the start menu, type in "cmd" in a search bar.
  • 2. Right-click cmd.exe and choose "Run as Administrator".
  • 3. Assuming "F" is the drive that has a RAW file system, you can type convert F: /fs:fat32 at the prompt window and press Enter.

When it's finished, eixt command prompt and restart your computer.

This is a feasible way how you can change one file system to another

If the RAW drive has been converted to FAT32 successfully using cmd, then you can access the drive as normal, and no data is lost after conversion.

However, most of the time, cmd won't work as expected.

You usually will get the error message saying "Convert is not available for RAW drives." Similar errors emerge while you are converting NTFS to FAT32 and converting RAW drive to NTFS using CMD. The “convert” syntax only works from FAT32 to NTFS file system.

A more reliable way to convert RAW to FAT32 without data loss

Of course you can foramt your disk to FAT32. However, you should be aware of the data loss after formatting.

To keep the security of your data, you are recommended to recover lost data from RAW drive before converting RAW to FAT32 with formatting.

As long as your RAW drive doesn't have hardware problem, you can perform data recovery by using iBoysoft Data Recovery, a professional RAW file system data recovery software.

It can recover lost data from RAW USB flash drive,RAW SD card, RAW external hard drive, formatted, corrupted, inaccessible hard drive, external hard drive, USB flash drive, memory card, recover deleted files even if emptied from Recycle Bin, etc. on Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP and Windows Server 2019/2016/2012/2008/2003.

Step 1: Recover lost data from RAW drive with iBoysoft Data Recovery

  • 1. Download & install iBoysoft Data Recovery on the PC, and then connect the RAW drive to the PC.
  • 2. Launch iBoysoft Data Recovery, and select the RAW drive.
  • Convert RAW to FAT32 without data loss
  • 3. Click "Next" to search for all lost files on the RAW drive.
  • 4. Preview the searching results, choose those you want, and click "Recover" button to get them back.
  • 5. Check to ensure you have recovered all lost data.

Step 2: Convert RAW to FAT32

After you have successfully recovered data on the RAW drive, you can convert RAW to FAT32 by format without worrying about data loss.

  • 1. Go to This PC, My Computer or Disk Management, find the RAW drive.
  • 2. Right-click the RAW drive to choose "Format".
  • 3. Set up file system as FAT32, and assign a volume label to it.
  • 4. Click "Start" and the format operation will finish soon.