How can I protect my flash drive from reformat?

In summary, the individual wants to be able to read, write, and format files on a flash drive, but does not want anyone to be able to do this without his permission. He is looking for a way to have this ability without having to spend extra money, and has found a possible solution through programming.
  • #1
duhuhu
59
2
Hey team!

I have a flash drive that I have already put a few files on that cannot be deleted by any user other than me on my own computer, but I recently found out that anyone can reformat the flash drive and get past that. Is there any way that I can be able to read and write to and from the drive but remove any ability to reformat it?

It is a 16 GB USB2.0 drive formatted to NTSF, and the protected files are just some autorun text files with my contact information on them so that if it gets lost or stolen, I can recover it.

The goal is that anyone who would take my flash drive as their own will become so annoyed with the popups every time they plug the thing in that they eventually just return it to me or throw it away. Ideally it would be cool if this could be done on a better flash drive when I need one (like a 64GB USB3.0 that actually costs a pretty penny)

I thank you all in advance for your time and effort :smile:

EDIT: I just realized this is in the wrong board... It should be in computing/technology... I can't figure out how to delete it, but if a moderator could push me to the other board that would be awesome.

Mod note: Your post is now moved.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
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  • #2
I'm not sure if there's anyway to protect a flash drive from stand-alone utilities that run outside of any normal operating system.
 
  • #3
I'm not sure how their throwing it away leaves you in a better position than formatting, but whatever.

If you really need to ensure than unauthorized users can't read, write, or format, you should get an encrypted USB stick, like the Kingston Data Traveler 2000, which start at about $100.
 
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Likes jim mcnamara
  • #4
Vanadium 50 said:
I'm not sure how their throwing it away leaves you in a better position than formatting, but whatever.

It is more of, if I can't have my stuff, no one can. I don't really NEED protection I just want it, and don't want to spend extra money for extra features that I don't really need. Thanks for the suggestion though :)
 
  • #5
The only way to get the kind of protection you want is to change the firmware of the usb stick.
If you are an experienced programmer you could use the "BadUSB" software https://github.com/adamcaudill/Psychson and configure it to do what you want.
Otherwise you are out of luck.
 
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Likes duhuhu
  • #6
DrZoidberg said:
The only way to get the kind of protection you want is to change the firmware of the usb stick.
If you are an experienced programmer you could use the "BadUSB" software https://github.com/adamcaudill/Psychson and configure it to do what you want.
Otherwise you are out of luck.

I will give this a try, I am not experienced in C# but I have plenty of experience in C and C++ so I am sure I can figure it out assuming I don't have to modify much if anything at all. Thanks mate! I will update with my results later this week!
 

Related to How can I protect my flash drive from reformat?

1. How can I password protect my flash drive?

There are several ways to password protect your flash drive. You can use a third-party encryption software, such as VeraCrypt or BitLocker, to create a password-protected container on your flash drive. Some flash drives also come with built-in encryption capabilities. Alternatively, you can use the built-in encryption feature on your computer's operating system, such as FileVault for Mac or BitLocker for Windows.

2. Can I prevent accidental formatting of my flash drive?

Yes, you can prevent accidental formatting of your flash drive by setting a read-only attribute on the drive. This will prevent any changes from being made to the files on the drive, including formatting. However, keep in mind that this will also prevent you from making any changes or adding new files to the drive.

3. Is it possible to recover data from a reformatted flash drive?

It is possible to recover data from a reformatted flash drive, but it depends on the extent of the reformatting. If the drive was quick formatted, meaning only the file system was changed and the data was not overwritten, then it may be possible to recover the data using specialized data recovery software. However, if the drive was fully formatted, meaning the data was overwritten, it may not be possible to recover the data.

4. Can I make a backup of my flash drive to protect against reformatting?

Yes, you can make a backup of your flash drive to protect against reformatting. This can be done by simply copying the files from the flash drive to another storage device, such as your computer's hard drive or an external hard drive. You can also use backup software to schedule automatic backups of your flash drive.

5. Are there any physical measures I can take to protect my flash drive from reformatting?

Yes, you can physically protect your flash drive from reformatting by using a write-protect switch. This is a physical switch that can be toggled to make the drive read-only, preventing any changes from being made to the data on the drive. However, not all flash drives have this feature, so it's important to check before purchasing one.

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