Review your favorite Linux distribution.
Go Back > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Software
User Name
Linux - Software This forum is for Software issues.
Having a problem installing a new program? Want to know which application is best for the job? Post your question in this forum.


  Search this Thread
Old 06-10-2008, 04:39 AM   #1
Registered: May 2007
Posts: 141

Rep: Reputation: 16
Formatting Flash drives / thumb drives

I'd like to format my thumb drive, of course on a linux machine, but I want it to also be readable on windows machine. So I tried the following:
sudo mkfs.vfat /dev/sdb1
But it turn out that the thumb drive cannot be mounted after formatting, showing the following error message.
mount:/dev/sdb1:can'tread superblock
What mistakes had I made? A wrong filesystem type? Wrong flags in the formatting command?
Old 06-10-2008, 06:39 AM   #2
Registered: Feb 2008
Location: Rome, Italy
Distribution: OpenSuSE 11.x, vectorlinux, slax, Sabayon
Posts: 206
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 45
I suggest adding the -v option to mkfs.vfat to get more details. And if it shows nothing meaningful, try looking at the system's log as maybe there is some damaged sector in the pendrive
Old 06-11-2008, 10:53 PM   #3
Registered: May 2007
Posts: 141

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 16
However, I later tried to plug the pendrive into a pc with Windows installed, and then I format the pendrive using Windows built-in tools. The pendrive then can be mounted again, like an ordinary proper pendrive!

This may suggest that the pendrive itself is alright, but I am formatting it improperly using mkfs.vfat, maybe due to incorrect flags.

Does anyone here had the experience of formatting a pendrive using Linux mkfs.vfat? Can any one help?
Old 06-12-2008, 02:28 AM   #4
LQ Guru
Registered: Oct 2005
Location: $RANDOM
Distribution: slackware64
Posts: 12,928
Blog Entries: 2

Rep: Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300Reputation: 1300
Many ways to do it:

mkfs -t vfat /dev/sdb1
mkdosfs -F 32 /dev/sdb1
If it doesn't work, use fdisk and make sure there's a partition on /dev/sdb.


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
USB Thumb Drives(devices) and Slackware 11.0 kwrxxx Slackware 4 10-06-2006 03:01 AM
Does Mepis now read Thumb drives richag77 Linux - Newbie 4 05-02-2006 08:13 AM
problem writing to thumb drives impeteperry Ubuntu 4 11-07-2005 12:57 AM
Thumb Drives and External HDDs e11 Linux - Newbie 11 11-18-2004 08:43 PM
Recommended thumb drives compatible with Redhat 9 moxieman99 Linux - Hardware 0 10-09-2004 02:17 PM > Forums > Linux Forums > Linux - Software

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 05:27 AM.

Main Menu
Write for LQ is looking for people interested in writing Editorials, Articles, Reviews, and more. If you'd like to contribute content, let us know.
Main Menu
RSS1  Latest Threads
RSS1  LQ News
Twitter: @linuxquestions
Open Source Consulting | Domain Registration