Formatting SD or USB disk under Linux

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Format SD or USB disk via GUI
  1. Once you have inserted the SD or USB disk into the computer, get started by opening your system’s disk management application.
  2. You should see your SD or USB disk listed among the other storage devices on your system. Make sure you select the one that you wish to format.
  3. You’ll have several options on what to do with this drive. Click options, and then click the one that says “Format Disk” or something similar.
  4. A quick format won’t securely erase the current data on the disk but it will perform the formatting very quickly, as the name implies. The other option is to rewrite the disk with all zeros (not necessary in the majority of situations). You can also create a MBR or GPT table, or apply no partitioning. If you’re not sure, just leave the defaults selected and click “Format”.
  5. As mentioned earlier in the guide, this process will completely erase the contents in your SD or USB disk. The formatting software warns us once again to make sure we’re aware, then it wipes the drive completely.
Format SD or USB disk via command line
  1. First, let’s figure out how to identify the media we wish to format. The name should start with /dev/sd and then a letter. Type the following command in terminal to see: “$ sudo fdisk -l”
  2. Find your device name in the fdisk output
  3. Use the mkfs command to format the disk with any file system you’d like. In this example, we’re using ext3: “$ sudo mkfs -t ext3 /deb/device name
  4. You can also specify things like ext2, ext3, ext4, fat32, ntfs, etc. If no file system is specified with -t, the device will be formatted as ext2.

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