Dec 21, 2020 • Filed to: Windows Computer Solutions • Proven solutions
The USB mass storage device class (also known as USB MSC or UMS) is a set of computing communications protocols, specifically a USB Device Class, defined by the USB Implementers Forum that makes a USB device accessible to a host computing device and enables file transfers between the host and the USB device. May 28, 2020 No matter the portable device is a USB flash drive, external hard drive, camera, wired headset, or something else, you can follow the steps below to update its driver. Press Windows log key and R key on the keyboard to bring up the Run dialog box. Dec 21, 2020 The default format used by most USB flash drives and other external storage media is FAT32. Some people are fine with keeping this format. But for most users, they always find the need to convert or format their USB drive to NTFS. This is for many reasons. With a USB drive that uses the FAT32 file type, you can only copy or add files less than 4GB.
USB Flash Drives are the new file briefcase in this world of technology. It allows you to store as many files you want within a little device. It makes files very compact, easily transportable, and organized. However, just like with a filing system used in paperwork, USB drives also make use of file systems. The most common file systems used are NTFS, exFAT, and FAT32. If you’ve been using flash drives and other external storage devices for a long time, you may be already familiar with this. Each file system has its pros and cons. Many PC users are opting to format or change their file systems to NTFS. If you’re unfamiliar with the file system and have no idea why this needs to be done, keep on reading. In this article, we will provide you with three easy ways you can format your USB drive to NTFS.
Why Do You Need To Format a USB Drive to NTFS?
The default format used by most USB flash drives and other external storage media is FAT32. Some people are fine with keeping this format. But for most users, they always find the need to convert or format their USB drive to NTFS. This is for many reasons. With a USB drive that uses the FAT32 file type, you can only copy or add files less than 4GB. This may be a hassle for some users who want to transport large files like movies, program installers, etc. Meanwhile, NTFS doesn’t have this limitation. You can copy or add files of any size and the partition sizes usually have a large capacity.
What is NTFS?
NTFS is a type of file system. It stands for the NT File system and is also called the New Technology File System. It’s a way of organizing files within a flash drive. It’s a new improvement from previous file types like File Allocation Table (FAT) or Extended File Allocation Table (exFAT) previously used by Microsoft Windows. Because it’s a relatively new file type, it has increased security from its new features like file permissions and encryptions. NTFS also has a Change Journal where the driver keeps track of the changes made within the drive. This means that if ever your PC unexpectedly shuts down or you experience a system crash, you can recover files that were lost during the event.
Here are three proven methods on how to format USB flash drive to NTFS.
Method 1. Format USB Flash drive to NTFS using Disk Management
1. Find My Computer in the Start menu or by typing it in the search bar. Right-click on it and click on Manage.
2. In Device Manager, look for your USB drive in the Disk Drives tab.
3. Right-click on your drive and choose Properties.
4. Under the Policies tab, click on Optimize for performance. Select OK.
5. Go to My Computer and look for your drive. Right-click and choose Format in the drop-down menu.
6.In the format options that will pop-up, select NTFS to convert your drive to NTFS.
7. Select Start and wait for the process to finish.
Method 2. Format USB flash drive to NTFS using Command Prompt
Using Command Prompt, make sure to type in the exact commands to avoid unexpected errors.
1. Launch Command Prompt by typing in cmd in the Run tool or typing Command Prompt in the search bar. Select Run as administrator.
2.Type in the command:
convert G: /fs:NTFS
NOTE: In this command, we’re formatting drive G. Change this to whatever drive letter you’re trying to work with.
Method 3. Formatting your USB drive using Windows tools
You can easily format your USB drive with just the built-in features of your Windows computer. Follow the steps below to perform this:
1. Plug the USB drive into the USB port of your computer or laptop.
2. Go to My Computer and right-click on your USB drive. A drop-down menu will appear. Choose Format…
3. The format window will open. Here you will see the device’s capacity, File System, and Allocation unit size. You can also rename the volume label. The Restore device defaults button will revert your drive’s settings to default. You can change the file system in NTFS or FAT and also assign the unit size.
4. Select the Start button at the bottom of the window and click OK to begin the format and erase all the data contained in the drive.
Formatting your USB drive may seem intimidating at first. Formatting changes the file type of your drive and along with this, also wipes out all the data saved within. So it’s important to back up all the files to your computer or another drive before performing any format. With any of the methods previously mentioned above, you will be able to perform a format of your USB flash drive easily and quickly.
Video Tutorial on How to Recover Lost/Deleted Partition Data?
- Partition Management
- Solve Partition Problems
- Partition Tips
The USB mass storage device class (also known as USB MSC or UMS) is a set of computing communications protocols, specifically a USB Device Class, defined by the USB Implementers Forum that makes a USB device accessible to a host computing device and enables file transfers between the host and the USB device. To a host, the USB device acts as an external hard drive; the protocol set interfaces with a number of storage devices.
Devices connected to computers via this standard include:
- External magnetic hard drives
- External optical drives, including CD and DVD reader and writer drives
- Portable flash memorydevices
- Adapters between standard flash memory cards and USB connections
- Digital audio and portable media players
Devices supporting this standard are known as MSC (Mass Storage Class) devices. While MSC is the original abbreviation, UMS (Universal Mass Storage) has also come into common use.
Operating system support
Most mainstream operating systems include support for USB mass storage devices; support on older systems is usually available through patches.
Microsoft Windows has supported MSC since Windows 2000. There is no support for USB supplied by Microsoft in Windows before Windows 95 and Windows NT 4.0. Windows 95 OSR2.1, an update to the operating system, featured limited support for USB. During that time no generic USB mass-storage driver was produced by Microsoft (including for Windows 98), and a device-specific driver was needed for each type of USB storage device. Third-party, freeware drivers became available for Windows 98 and Windows 98SE, and third-party drivers are also available for Windows NT 4.0. Windows 2000 has support (via a generic driver) for standard USB mass-storage devices; Windows Me and all later Windows versions also include support.
Windows Mobile supports accessing most USB mass-storage devices formatted with FAT on devices with USB Host. However, portable devices typically cannot provide enough power for hard-drive disk enclosures (a 2.5-inch (64 mm) hard drive typically requires the maximum 2.5 W in the USB specification) without a self-powered USB hub. A Windows Mobile device cannot display its file system as a mass-storage device unless the device implementer adds that functionality. However, third-party applications add MSC emulation to most WM devices (commercial Softick CardExport and free WM5torage). Only memory cards (not internal-storage memory) can generally be exported, due to file-systems issues; see device access, below.
The AutoRun feature of Windows worked on all removable media, allowing USB storage devices to become a portal for computer viruses. Beginning with Windows 7, Microsoft limited AutoRun to CD and DVD drives, updating previous Windows versions.
Neither MS-DOS nor most compatible operating systems included support for USB. Third-party generic drivers, such as Duse, USBASPI and DOSUSB, are available to support USB mass-storage devices. FreeDOS supports USB mass storage as an Advanced SCSI Programming Interface (ASPI) interface.
Classic Mac OS and macOS
Apple Computer's Mac OS 9 and macOS support USB mass storage; Mac OS 8.5.1 supported USB mass storage through an optional driver.
The Linux kernel has supported USB mass-storage devices since its 2.4 series (2001), and a backport to kernel 2.2.18 has been made. In Linux, more features exist in addition to the generic drivers for USB mass-storage device class devices, including quirks, bug fixes and additional functionality for devices and controllers (vendor-enabled functions such as ATA command pass-through for ATA-USB bridges, which is useful for S.M.A.R.T. or temperature monitoring, controlling the spin-up and spin-down of hard disk drives, and other options). This includes a certain portion of Android-based devices, through support of USB-OTG, since Android uses the Linux kernel.
Other Unix-related systems
Solaris has supported devices since its version 2.8 (1998), NetBSD since its version 1.5 (2000), FreeBSD since its version 4.0 (2000) and OpenBSD since its version 2.7 (2000). Digital UNIX (later known as Tru64 UNIX), has supported USB and USB mass-storage devices since its version 4.0E (1998). AIX has supported USB mass-storage devices since its 5.3 T9 and 6.1 T3 versions; however, it is not well-supported and lacks features such as partitioning and general blocking.
Game consoles and embedded devices
The Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 support most mass-storage devices for the data transfer of media such as pictures and music. As of April 2010, the Xbox 360 (a) used a mass-storage device for saved games and the PS3 allowed transfers between devices on a mass-storage device. Independent developers have released drivers for the TI-84 Plus and TI-84 Plus Silver Edition to access USB mass-storage devices. In these calculators, the usb8x driver supports the msd8x user-interface application.
The USB mass-storage specification provides an interface to a number of industry-standard command sets, allowing a device to disclose its subclass. In practice, there is little support for specifying a command set via its subclass; most drivers only support the SCSI transparent command set, designating their subset of the SCSI command set with their SCSI Peripheral Device Type (PDT). Subclass codes specify the following command sets:
- Reduced Block Commands (RBC)
- SFF-8020i, MMC-2 (used by ATAPI-style CD and DVD drives)
- QIC-157 (tape drives)
- Uniform Floppy Interface (UFI)
- SFF-8070i (used by ARMD-style devices)
- SCSI transparent command set (use 'inquiry' to obtain the PDT)
The specification does not require a particular file system on conforming devices. Based on the specified command set and any subset, it provides a means to read and write sectors of data (similar to the low-level interface used to access a hard drive). Operating systems may treat a USB mass-storage device like a hard drive; users may partition it in any format (such as MBR and GPT), and format it with any file system.
Because of its relative simplicity, the most-common file system on embedded devices such as USB flash drives, cameras, or digital audio players is Microsoft's FAT or FAT32 file system (with optional support for long filenames). Large, USB-based hard disks may be formatted with NTFS, which (except for Windows) is less supported. However, a keydrive or other device may be formatted with another file system (HFS Plus on an Apple Macintosh, or Ext2 on Linux, or Unix File System on Solaris or BSD). This choice may limit (or prevent) access to a device's contents by equipment using a different operating system. OS-dependent storage options include LVM, partition tables and software encryption.
In cameras, MP3 players and similar devices which must access a file system independent of an external host, the FAT32 file system is preferred by manufacturers. All such devices halt their file-system (dismount) before making it available to a host operating system to prevent file-system corruption or other damage (although it is theoretically possible for both devices to use read-only mode or a cluster file system). Some devices have a write-protection switch (or option) allowing them to be used in read-only mode; this makes files available for shared use without the risk of virus infection.
Two main partitioning schemes are used by vendors of pre-formatted devices. One puts the file system (usually FAT32) directly on the device without partitioning, making it start from sector 0 without additional boot sectors, headers or partitions. The other uses a DOS partition table (and MBR code), with one partition spanning the entire device. This partition is often aligned to a high power of two of the sectors (such as 1 or 2 MB), common in solid state drives for performance and durability. Some devices with embedded storage resembling a USB mass-storage device (such as MP3 players with a USB port) will report a damaged (or missing) file system if they are reformatted with a different file system. However, most default-partition devices may be repartitioned (by reducing the first partition and file system) with additional partitions. Such devices will use the first partition for their own operations; after connecting to the host system, all partitions are available.
Devices connected by a single USB port may function as multiple USB devices, one of which is a USB mass-storage device. This simplifies distribution and access to drivers and documentation, primarily for the Microsoft Windows and Mac OS X operating systems. Such drivers are required to make full use of the device, usually because it does not fit a standard USB class or has additional functionality. An embedded USB mass-storage device makes it possible to install additional drivers without CD-ROM disks, floppies or Internet access to a vendor website; this is important, since many modern systems are supplied without optical or floppy drives. Internet access may be unavailable because the device provides network access (wireless, GSM or Ethernet cards). The embedded USB mass storage is usually made permanently read-only by the vendor, preventing accidental corruption and use for other purposes (although it may be updated with proprietary protocols when performing a firmware upgrade). Advantages of this method of distribution are lower cost, simplified installation and ensuring driver portability.
Some advanced hard disk drive commands, such as Tagged Command Queuing and Native Command Queuing (which may increase performance), ATA Secure Erase (which allows all data on the drive to be securely erased) and S.M.A.R.T. (accessing indicators of drive reliability) exist as extensions to low-level drive command sets such as SCSI, ATA and ATAPI. These features may not work when the drives are placed in a disk enclosure that supports a USB mass-storage interface. Some USB mass-storage interfaces are generic, providing basic read-write commands; although that works well for basic data transfers with devices containing hard drives, there is no simple way to send advanced, device-specific commands to such USB mass-storage devices (though, devices may create their own communication protocols over a standard USB control interface). The USB Attached SCSI (UAS) protocol, introduced in USB 3.0, fixes several of these issues, including command queuing, command pipes for hardware requiring them, and power management.
Specific USB 2.0 chipsets had proprietary methods of achieving SCSI pass-through, which could be used to read S.M.A.R.T. data from drives using tools such as smartctl (using the -d option followed by 'chipset'). More recent USB storage chipsets support the SCSI / ATA Translation (SAT) as a generic protocol for interacting with ATA (and SATA) devices. Using esoteric ATA or SCSI pass-through commands (such as secure-erase or password protection) when a drive is connected via a USB bridge may cause drive failure, especially with the hdparm utility.
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From the USB Implementers Forum website:
Gpt Usb Camera Driver Download 32-bit
- What actually happens when you plug in a USB device? – Linux kernel internals