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Formatting a pendrive, microSD card or other USB drive in Ubuntu and other Linux distributions is a process quite different from Windows and MacOS, but not more difficult. We explain several ways to do so that you can delete all files permanently and fully secure
1: Choose: graphic form or terminal
On Linux- based operating systems there is always the option to use the Terminal emulator . From this classic console command you can do almost anything, as long as you know how. If not, you have the option to copy and paste the corresponding code and pray for it to work.
However, as the OS has improved, particularly with distributions like Ubuntu or Mint, it has also become more accessible. Thinking about less expert users, there are graphical ways to perform basic tasks such as formatting a pendrive, a process that we face in this tutorial.
If you have decided to leave macOS or Windows for Linux , you will need some tricks at the beginning. Once you master them, everything will be a lot easier. This is one of them, so we’ll start with the simplest: format a USB stick or USB drive with free applications.
2: GParted or Disk Utility
If you are a user of Ubuntu or some of its derivatives, whether the official tastes known or distributions based on it, you probably have installed the GNOME Disk Utility application on your computer . You may use Xubuntu, for example, a distro that does not have this software.
This program is the one that facilitates the task of completely erasing your pendrive in Ubuntu Linux . Just run it, select the drive you want to format and done, problem solved .
If you have a problem during the process or do not want to install this application, there is an alternative: GParted . Is a program to edit partitions , either hard disk , SSD or USB memory.
When you open it – after entering your password – select the drive you want to format in the drop-down box in the upper right corner. A list of all partitions on the drive will be displayed in the middle frame. In this case, it must be one.
Right-click and select Format in FAT32, the most common format, although you can choose another one that suits you the most . Then, click on the green stick icon that is now enabled above. Once the load bar is complete, you can now unmount and eject your newly formatted pendrive in Linux with no problems.
3: How to format a Pendrive from the Linux terminal
More advanced users of this operating system often say that the easiest way to do things on Linux is the terminal. It does not have to be this way , especially if you have just arrived and are taking your first steps. What for them is done, it can cost you. Of course, do not be scared because in this tutorial we will practically dictate what commands you have to put in the terminal to format a USB drive .
Luckily, this command console allows copying and pasting text, so you just have to do it with the commands we cite below. Along with them we also give a series of tips to identify well which unit you want to erase completely.
- $ Sudo fdisk -l
This last code serves to show a list of all the units detected by the system, including your hard disk. You only have to identify among them the pendrive that you want to format. Typically, it corresponds to the SDC drive and is in FAT32 or NTFS format. You can also guide him by its size.
The following code to enter in the terminal is:
- Sudo mkfs.vfat -F 32 -n My_Memory / dev / sdc1
What does this mean? Each part of this command has a function , so let’s explain what each one is for, as you probably have to make modifications:
- Sudo mkfs.vfat: is the format command itself. You must enter it regardless of the target unit
- -F 32: with this you tell the terminal that you want to format FAT32 to your pendrive.
- -n pendrive: anything you put behind the N is the name you assign to your unit. Avoid odd spaces and symbols.
- / Dev / sdc1: is the path on which the USB is located. If it is SDB or another alternative, enter it instead of SDC1
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