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Why does my USB flash drive have a container and a volume and the volume has a document icon in Finder?

In Disk Utility, I went to View > Show All Devices and noticed my USB flash drive has a container and a volume. What's weirder is that the volume, which is named A.B.C.D has a document icon when I look at it under Locations in Finder. I'm concerned about this because I'm going to store key data on this USB. Will store data on a flash drive that looks like this causes file corruption?

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Jenny Zeng

Jenny Zeng

Answered on Wednesday, November 22, 2023

If your USB flash drive is formatted with APFS as the file system, it's completely normal to have a container. This is a unique feature of APFS, which allows volumes inside the container to share storage space. So, there's nothing to worry about regarding the container.

As for your drive having a document icon, it's a bit strange to me. As far as I know, one can change the drive icon to a document icon but it should still appear with a drive icon under the Locations section in Finder. To fix it, you can try:

  • Rename your drive without the dots.
  • Replace the document icon with a regular drive icon and see if it returns back to normal. (Open Finder, right-click on a drive that has an icon you want to use and select "Get Info." Click the small drive icon in the upper-left corner of the pop-up window and press Command + C to copy it. Then use the same steps to locate the document icon of your USB flash drive, select the icon, and press Command + V to paste it.)
  • Back up data and reformat the USB flash drive on your Mac. (Note: Click View > Show All Devices, erase the physical drive located at the top of the container, and set the scheme to GUID Partition Map.)

Read Also:

Apple File System (APFS) Overview: Features, Limitations, & Uses

How to Customize Icons for Hard Disks on Your Mac

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