How to fix Pen drive has RAW file system and not formatted error?

Posted by Katrina to Data Recovery Tips on September 27th, 2018

When your Pen drive has RAW file system and not formatted error, you will receive error messages like: "You need to format the disk in drive before you can use it" in Windows 7/8/10.

You need to format the disk in drive before you can use it

Or "The disk in drive is not formatted. Do you want to format it now?" in Windows XP.

The disk in drive is not formatted

Meanwhile, the drive will show RAW file system in Disk Management and its capacity will becomes 0 bytes in properties. If you run CHKDSK on the pen drive, you will be reminded: "CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives." Then how to change RAW to NTFS/FAT32? Is it possible to get data back when the pen drive gives not formatting RAW error warning?

Fix Pen drive has RAW file system and not formatted error

Reformatting is always the most effective way to fix RAW issue, such as WD external hard drive RAW and not formatted, external hard drive RAW asking for formatting, USB flash drive not formatted, etc. But this operation will erase all data stored on the drive and result in permanent data loss. If you have important data in the pen drive, you need to recover lost data from RAW pen drive firstly and then reformat the drive.

Step 1: Recover lost data from RAW pen drive?

iBoysoft Data Recovery is the best free data recovery software that can recover lost data from RAW pen drive, recover lost data from not formatted pen drive. Besides, it's also able to recover lost data from corrupted SD memory cards, recover lost data from RAW USB drives, recover lost data from inaccessible external hard drives, Pen drives and other external storage devices on Windows 10/8/7/Vista/XP and Windows Server 2019/2016/2012/2008/2003.

Simple steps to recover lost data from RAW pen drive

1. Free download iBoysoft Data Recovery and install it.

2. Launch iBoysoft Data Recovery.

Recover lost data from RAW pen drive with iBoysoft Data Recovery

3. Select the RAW pen drive and click "Next" to start scanning for all lost files.

4. Preview the scanning results and click "Recover" to restore data.

5. Check to ensure you have recovered all needed data.

Step 2: Format RAW pen drive?

After data recovery, you can reformat the RAW pen drive to make it usable again. The following are two feasible ways to format RAW pen drive to NTFS/FAT32. If the one doesn't work for you, you can try another.

Option 1: Format RAW pen drive in Disk Management

1. Go to This PC or Disk Management, and right-click on the RAW pen drive, select "Format".

2. Setup the required information: file system, allocation unit size, volume label, format options (the default format option is Quick Format).

3. Click "Start", the format operation will complete soon.

After reformatting, the external drive that suddenly becomes RAW will be fixed without losing data. Then, you can copy the recovered data back to the external drive again.

Option 2: Format the RAW pen drive using cmd

1. Click Start and search diskpart.

2. Right click on diskpart and then click on Run as Administrator.

3. Type list volume to list all the available partitions and drives, then press Enter. Identify which drive/partition you want to clean. For example, F drive is your target drive you want to select and it is Volume 3.

4. Now type select Volume 3 and press Enter. Be sure to choose the correct drive/partition.

5. Type format fs=ntfs quick and press Enter. (You can replace ntfs with fat32 or any format you want)

6. You can type exit and press Enter to close the command prompt. The DiskPart has fixed the RAW partition and then you can reuse the pen drive as usual.

Why does pen drive have RAW file system and not formatted error?

RAW file system is a file system that can't be recognized by Windows OS. If a drive has RAW file system, the operating system will consider that the drive not formatted and there is no file system assigned to it.

RAW file system and the not formatted error is a common problem that not only happens on pen drive but also appears on USB flash drive, external hard drive, hard drive, SD card, memory card, etc. Usually, the main reason of the error is that you often remove your pen drive from your computer unsafely or improperly. Moreover, it is also caused by virus infection, bad sectors, and improper operation and so on.

Still have questions?