Windows Unable to Complete the Format-Fix Your Errors

Windows was unable to complete the format error- feature image
Written by extrauser

Windows has always been a tricky operating system to figure out, and Windows was unable to complete the format is an error message that users globally have been facing. Windows was unable to complete the format just means that your Windows operating system has faced some technical glitches in completing a designated task.

Fix up Windows was unable to complete the format

This is the kind of error message which you might get while working with Windows and trying to format your external storage device. So let me first share with you when can an issue like this arise. This may do while you are trying to format a Micro SD Card, USB flash drive, pen drive, hard drive or a solid-state drive.

Now, formatting these devices of this kind is a common task for almost all of us but the problem arises when we face this kind of an error.

You may like: DNS Not Responding, Spotify Application Responding

Causes That May Put You To A Pause

Before going to the ways outs to the problem let us start by identifying the very causes of finding such kind of an error message. I will try to bring to you some of the vital reasons for which Windows at times might not be able to complete the format of your storage device.

Damaged Storage Device

A major cause that might make your storage drive unworkable is a physical damage to the storage device. A computer will in anyway not be able to format a device whenever there is an issue like the chip is spoiled or the circuit board is not working.

Virus Infection

This can be another major reason to make windows unable to format a storage device. Most of the devices used these days are portable and are connected to various computers. But the fact is that not all computers have antivirus software to protect them. So there always remains a chance that they are damaged by a virus infection.

A disk Might be Write-Protected 

Another major thing to be always kept in mind is that Windows is unable to format any drive which is write-protected. If any device which is write-protected is connected to a computer then Windows will not work with it. Rather, will leave us a command asking either to remove the write-protection or to use some other disk.

Too many bad sectors in the Storage device

Sectors within the storage devices are the small bands to store the data.

At times, due to;

  • The bad quality of the files stored
  • Unplugging the device directly while working etc.

causes these bad sectors within the device. And once there is a bad sector in the device the entire formatting process of the device gets messed up.

So these were a few common causes that might cause you to stop your work while you are on to format your storage device.

Now once we have got the most probable reasons why Windows is not being able to complete the format, we will move towards the main point of concern. And that is how to work out on the very message| Windows was unable to complete the format. So think of what?? Let us start our journey in the desired direction.

Total Fix to your Windows was unable to complete the format issues:

Guys, when you get an error message of the type Windows was unable to complete the format, then there is absolutely nothing to get so much confused. Because if there is a problem then there are many solutions. Yes, there are pretty some ways that can solve your issue. The only thing is that you will have to follow certain steps to get done with your work.

Window Disk Management:

Window Disk Management is nothing but a tool that enables us to view and manage the drives and partitions installed on your computer. And this is such a tool where we can do formatting of damaged flash drives. So let us now discuss the steps for working with this tool.

  1. Go to “My Computer” and give a right-click on the same icon and further click on the “Manage” option.Fix up Windows was unable to complete the format with Disk Management
  2. Upon clicking on “Manage” you will get “Disk Management”.
  3. Once you get “Disk Management” you need to find out and select the device which you are trying to format and right-click on that and finally hit “Format”.

That is it and you are done with your job. But one thing you must keep in mind while doing this is if there is any partition on the drive, then all of them must be deleted.

Command Prompt:

A situation might arise when Disk Management is not the right option to resolve ‘Windows was unable to complete the format’ error. Then in that situation what we will do is we will take the path of formatting with command. So here are the steps for you to follow and get your stuff done.

  1. First, click on the Start button and the go for typing ‘cmd’ in the search box and then hit on Command Prompt and run it as Administrator.
  2. Then you will have to type ‘diskpart’ on the black screen that appears and press Enter. Then you will find a list of all the drives on the computer. Also, the drive in the query will be marked within a box.
  3. Now once you get the drive in question go for typing the same drive. For an example, if you get that there is a problem in disk 2 then type ‘disk 2’ and then type ‘clean’ and finally press enter and you are done. Once it is done, the computer leaves a message for us that the drive is cleaned and a new partition is to be done.
  4. To create a new partition you will have to type ‘create primary partition’ and press Enter. Then type ‘format /FS:FAT32F:’ and press Enter. By writing this your F drive will be formatted to FAT file system.

EaseUS Partition Tool:

EaseUS is a third party software to resolve the issue of ‘Windows was unable to complete the format’ error. This is a very user-friendly application to while you are formatting some USB drive.

  1. At the very beginning, you will have to insert the device you are trying to format. Then go for launching EaseUS partition tool and right-click the device with the issue and then go for ‘Format partition’.
  2. Upon that you will get a small box on which you can edit the partition and choose a file system.
  3. Finally, go for ‘Apply’ and confirm the formatting of the storage device.


Another third party tool to fix the issue of ‘Windows was unable to complete the format’ is PartitionGuru. The main advantage that we get from using this tool is we can also use it as a file recovery tool. Also, we can use PartitionGuru to repair the bad sectors of the drive. So let us go through the working of this tool.

  1. First of all start with PartitionGuru and there you will get to see the details of the internal and external drives.
  2. Once you get the list of drives click on the drive with the issue and then go for ‘Disk’ and finally from the dropout select ‘Verify or Repair Bad Sectors’.
  3. Upon doing that the system will identify the bad sectors. Then go for ‘Repair’ to repair the bad sector of your external drive.
  4. Last but not the least go for selecting the external drive and click ‘Format’.

But one thing which must be always kept in mind is that while repairing the storage drive the files in the bad sector might get damaged. So the thing one must do is that we must take the back up of the files before we go through the entire process.

After done with all the repair and fixing of the issue of ‘Windows was unable to complete the format’ I think the same question is in your mind as it is in mine. And the very question is shall I be able to recover all that is there on the device?  The answer to the very question is Yes you can.

Recovering Files From Devices Which Cannot Be Formatted

Sometimes the case is that you have formatted the drive and the result is that you have lost all the files and folders on the particular drive. But then guys there is no point of worry for that matter. You can always recover the lost data just for that the external drive is not totally dead. As discussed above the tool PartitionGuru can also recover files apart from repairing them. So let us just go for it.

  1. We will have to connect the external drive to the computer and run the tool. As soon as you do that you will get the external drive listed on the screen.
  2. The select the appropriate drive and then ‘File Recovery’ finally go for ‘Complete Recovery’ and you go for recovering the required files and data.
  3. At last, never forget to save the recovered files to a proper location.

Time To Wish Luck

So friends all I have tried to do is I have shared some really good methods with you to fix the issue of ‘Windows was Unable to Complete the Format’. And it is always you to test that these are the best possible methods to work for this kind of an error. But but but! Yes, there remains again a BUT. If your device is permanently damaged then it is really time to wish you luck.

About the author


Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: