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How to format a USB Flash Drive in Windows

It's important to make sure that your USB Flash drive is configured into a file system format that is usable across multiple computer operating systems. In order to copy files to a USB Flash drive on a Mac computer, and then open them on an APU Classroom or Lab computer, (or vice versa) the Flash drive must be formatted in either exFAT or FAT32(MS-DOS FAT).

**WARNING** THE PROCESS OF FORMATTING A USB DRIVE WILL PERMANENTLY ERASE ALL DATA ON THE ENTIRE USB FLASH DRIVE. PLEASE BACKUP IMPORTANT DATA ELSEWHERE BEFORE PROCEEDING.

(Google Drive works well to back up data)

 

Instructions on how to format a USB Flash Drive into exFAT in Windows:

  1. Insert USB Flash drive into one of the USB ports on your Windows computer.
  2. Open program called "Disk Management", by clicking the Windows Start button, or pressing the Windows Key on the keyboard, and typing the work "Disk Management" then pressing enter, or by pressing the Windows Key + X, and selecting "Disk Management" from the list of programs.
  3. Identify the USB Flash Drive listed on the left hand side of window, it will usually be listed as Disk 1, but it may be listed as something else depending on how many drives your computer has, or if you have any other drives plugged into your computer. (An easy way to make sure you are selecting the correct drive is to unplug it from the computer, and re-insert it, when you have Disk Management open, to see which drives disappears and reappears).
  4. Right-Click the primary partition (will have a blue header line above it) and from the drop down menu, select "format".
  5. A new window will open, prompting you to fill in a name for the USB Flash drive (Volume Label), go ahead and give it a name that makes sense to you.
  6. Select exFAT as the file system in the file system format drop down box.
  7. Leave Allocation to Default.
  8. Leave "perform a quick format" box checked, as it will go much quicker (unless you know you need to full format which will more securely make old data on the drive unreadable, the full format will take considerably longer to finish)
  9. Click "OK" on the bottom of the window, and the drive will format.
  10. Done!

The USB Flash Drive will now begin formatting, which may take up to a minute or so. Once it finishes, you are all done!

See video for visual instructions:

 

 

Instructions on how to format a USB Flash Drive into FAT32(MS-DOS FAT) in Windows:

  1. Insert USB Flash drive into one of the USB ports on your Windows computer.
  2. Open program called "Disk Management", by clicking the Windows Start button, or pressing the Windows Key on the keyboard, and typing the work "Disk Management" then pressing enter, or by pressing the Windows Key + X, and selecting "Disk Management" from the list of programs.
  3. Identify the USB Flash Drive listed on the left hand side of window, it will usually be listed as Disk 1, but it may be listed as something else depending on how many drives your computer has, or if you have any other drives plugged into your computer. (An easy way to make sure you are selecting the correct drive is to unplug it from the computer, and re-insert it, when you have Disk Management open, to see which drives disappears and reappears).
  4. Right-Click the primary partition (will have a blue header line above it) and from the drop down menu, select "format".
  5. A new window will open, prompting you to fill in a name for the USB Flash drive (Volume Label), go ahead and give it a name that makes sense to you.
  6. Select FAT32 as the file system in the file system format drop down box.
  7. Leave Allocation to Default.
  8. Leave "perform a quick format" box checked, as it will go much quicker (unless you know you need to full format which will more securely make old data on the drive unreadable, the full format will take considerably longer to finish)
  9. Click "OK" on the bottom of the window, and the drive will format.
  10. Done!

The USB Flash Drive will now begin formatting, which may take up to a minute or so. Once it finishes, you are all done!

See video for visual instructions:

 

 

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