11:10 am

Forum Question: How Can I Clear and Reformat a Thumb Drive?

I am using OS X El Captain 10.11.6, and I used to reformat a thumb drive using Disk Utility. That used to offer at least three different reformat options to choose from, with the most overwriting taking several minutes to complete an 8gb thumb drive. It seems the current Disk Utility doesn’t offer those options, and quickly erases the contents. Is there another way to do it? What options should I use in the pull-down menus? I am trying to load music on the drive for use in my car’s radio, which had a couple of USB ports.
Jack Weibel

Comments: One Response to “How Can I Clear and Reformat a Thumb Drive?”

    10/14/16 @ 11:10 am

    Disk Utility is the app to use. I’m not sure what you mean by “these options.” Using Disk Utility under Sierra, which looks similar to the one in El Capitan though I can’t be sure if it is exactly the same, I see the ability to erase and reformat using four different “formats” and three different “schemes.” I can also choose Security Options if I want it to overwrite data.
    Not sure what else you are looking for.
    In most cases, for Mac use, you would use Mac OS Extended format and GUID scheme. But if you are using this with a car radio system, you may need to consult with the documentation to find out what it wants. It probably wants FAT and Master Boot Record (Windows). But you’d need to check, or use trial-and-error.

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