TWEAK: Enable Formatting Flash Drive to NTFS

As previously mentioned, Windows does not directly allow formatting USB flash drives (UFDs) to be formatted to NTFS. However, the utility diskpart makes this possible. And we also mentioned that using diskpart when there are multiple drives and UFDs makes the risk of losing data grow exponentially. Things can go wrong in many different ways and we need to mitigate that risk.

While it is not possible through the GUI at default settings, we can tweak the behavior of Windows to make the GUI allow us to format UFDs to NTFS. Follow the procedure along as we make tweaks to the handling of the USB drives.

Follow the below procedure to enable formatting to NTFS.

[1] Launch the Device Manager. Via start menu: Start -> Run -> devmgmt.msc -> OK. If via the control panel, Start -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Computer Management. Then click on the Device Manager.

[2] Then open the Disk Drives by clicking the "+" before it. You will be having a window similar to the screenshot below.


[3] Right-click on the UFD you want to format. And select Properties.

[4] On the device properties window, go to the Policies tab. Change the Removal policy to Better performance. And click OK to close all open windows.


[5] Launch Windows Explorer, right-click on the drive assignment of the UFD and select Format... You will now notice that the Format utility can format the UFD to NTFS.


[6] Go ahead and format the UFD.

This way of formatting UFDs to NTFS is safer and doesn't have the same level of risk as when using diskpart. You can select the proper drive to format and won't easily commit the mistake of accidentally formatting another drive or UFD. Not only that, the risk of losing important, critical data is avoided.

But then again, whichever way is easier and works for you remains your judgment call.

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