A common problem faced by removable disk users is “The format did not complete successfully” error when trying to format a memory card or a external hard drive. The pop-up message that strikes the screen of your computer is quite irritating and makes it impossible to access files in the USB flash stick or SD card. Don’t panic. In this article, you’ll know possible reasons of this error and learn to fix “The format did not complete successfully”.
Before moving ahead to the solutions for fixing the problem, let’s have a look on the reasons that causes the problem, which is also known as “Windows was unable to complete the format”.
When “The format did not complete successfully” error appears, it means that you lose the control of the disk’s storage space. Now that we know the possible causes, we may fix this problem accordingly.
However, as another symptom of the root problem, you may even not be able to access files in the removable disk. In addition, all the effective solutions to this problem will wipe data in the removable disk. How can we restore data when “The format did not complete successfully”?
In case “The format did not complete successfully” error happens, this recovery program can also help you extract files from the removable disk. Just download and install the data recovery tool, then connect the removable disk to computer and follow steps below.
Now, the data should have been extracted. If the program cannot detect your removable disk due to more serious problem, then you may try following solutions to fix the problem first. You could still try the recovery tool to get back files from formatted partition.
Virus and bad sector errors are not the most possible causes of the problem. However, it won’t hurt to have a check before trying other solutions.
Depending on which anti-virus software you use, just do a full scan on the partition and fix threats and viruses. For Windows 10 users, the built-in Windows Defender can do basic work.
It is also very convenient to scan and repair errors of removable disk in Windows. The following instruction is based on Windows 10 computer, but the operation should be similar in all current Windows computers.
Scan and repair errors in Windows 10
If the problem persists after repairing viruses and errors, please keep trying the following methods.
Command prompt is a powerful utility for performing advanced tasks for users. When “The format did not complete successfully” error appears, it is possible to do it in Command prompt.
Note: All data will be wiped.
Once the formatting is completed, reconnect the disk to computer and see if the problem is solved.
In case all formatting methods fail, the last resort is to repartition the disk drive, which will make the removable disk run as a new one.
Now, “The format did not complete successfully” or “Windows was unable to complete the format” should disappear and you have learnt the methods fix the problem.
Nevertheless, more often than not, it is more important to restore data than merely fixing the problem. Though a good file or photo recovery software could work like a charm, it is always suggested make enough backups for precious data. Feel free to ask if you have any question.