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Format a Write Protected Drive (RAW File System)

This is a discussion on Format a Write Protected Drive (RAW File System) within the Hard Drive Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. Hi Guys, I had lost my hard drive partition previously. I thoroughly followed the instructions on "TestDisk" but I was

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Old 04-08-2012, 12:59 AM   #1
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Hi Guys,

I had lost my hard drive partition previously. I thoroughly followed the instructions on "TestDisk" but I was not able to make my drive re-appear. I was able to recover the files though so my goal now is to reformat the whole drive.

However, I get this error message every time I try to format the drive through Disk Management:

"Virtual Disk Manager: The operation did not complete because the media is write-protected."

I have tried the following but still nothing works:
1) Setting the StorageDevicePolicies in the registry to "0".
2) Using the "attributes disk clear readonly" in DiskPart CMD.

Here are the details:

Model: Buffalo HD-PXT320U2/B-AP through USB 2.0
OS: Windows 7 32bit

The external hard disk is partitioned into two (2), i.e., the main drive and the utility drive. The file system of the main drive is RAW while the file system of the utility drive is CDFS. The drive was already partitioned when I bought it. I can't see any visible write protection switch on my hard disk.

Is there any way I can format the drive to exFAT? Can I just reformat the whole drive? I don't use the utility drive anyway.

Thank you so much for your time. Hope I can hear from you guys soon.
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Old 04-08-2012, 03:29 AM   #2
Join Date: Aug 2004
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The external hard drive may have failed. Test it with Seagate SeaTools for Windows, since if it has failed it's pointless trying to figure out how to fix it. Get SeaTools for Windows here: | Seagate
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Old 05-08-2012, 09:05 PM   #3
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Hello. Don't worry with this raw file system problem. In face there are some better ways to fix such partition problem.

When partition is marked as raw file system, it may state that there are some freeware that could let you fix such raw partition or drive problem on your hard disk drive, usb drive, memory card etc.

TestDisk, it works to get you out of such raw drive problem.

Just one thing, it is command line built, not very user friendly.

However, there are one tip that you should keep in mind.

If you have data on the drive that marked as RAW, you should use some freeware like icare data recovery free to get deleted files restored before you use testdisk.
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Old 05-09-2012, 03:37 PM   #4
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Can I just reformat the whole drive? I don't use the utility drive anyway.
If you do not want to recover any data and you no longer need the partition formatted CDFS, then Delete the CDFS partition, and any other partitions, until all of the space is Unallocated. If the Disk still says that it is RAW, then Right click (Disk 1 or Disk2 etc) and choose Initialize the Volume. Right click the Unallocated Space and Then Create a new Simple Volume and Format it NTFS.
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