How to cope with RAW file system USB flash drive that is asking to format?

How to cope with RAW file system USB flash drive that is asking to format?

Hello, hope you have useful solutions for me! This morning, when opening a Transcend USB flash drive with many songs that often are heard inside my car on my PC, it is shows: "The disk is not formatted. Do you want to format it now?" Open its properties interface and check it there. Its used space and free space are both 0 bytes. Its file system type is also in RAW. What does that indicate? My flash drive is damaged or corrupted somehow? Since I still need the inner stored documents and photos, I do have checked the related topic online and found many forum threads recommended people to use RAW file system flash drive recovery software, like
How do you think? I really have no idea about such software and data recovery information. Thank you for any suggestion here!

lyjuja | 20. Oktober 2015

does it still read the files when in your car.
yes=try it on another pc and back up those files.
no= it is probably fried so nothing to lose by reformatting but all your files will be lost.

the only time i have run across "raw" files are for photography. but then again, i am a senior citizen with limited experience.

lukaville | 20. Oktober 2015

try to reflash flash drive firmware

Timo | 22. Oktober 2015

Flash drives (thumb drives) are not very reliable medias. If you manage to salvage your files make a proper backup of them. Multiple copies of same files on multiple medias.

mithnysuhas | 30. Dezember 2015

Hi AlfredaVon, I know how much it hurts when we lose our important files. Once I had the same problem with my flash drive when I try to connect the PC, it showing same message. This situation occurs mainly when flash drive is infected by severe virus. Thus, it damages the file system of usb drive and makes it as RAW file system. Because of this, system won’t recognize flash drive file system. I don’t have much idea about the software’s you are talking about. But, I found the solution and recovered all data from corrupted flash drive after reading this page

dxdigg | 29. November 2018

There are several solutions that can fix you need to format the disk in drive before you want to use it.

1. Plug in your External Hard Drive to other USB ports
2. Restart your PC
3. Plug in the external hard drive to another PC
4. Run an Anti-virus software to scan your drive
5. Use CHKDSK or Check Disk Utility to check your external hard drive for issues
6. Recover data with Bitwar Data Recovery software from not formatted external hard drive

Reasons why your USB turns to RAW, you can check this link: and if you need to recover data from RAW USB flash drive, also check this article.

psusi | 29. November 2018

"Use CHKDSK or Check Disk Utility to check your external hard drive for issues"

Won't run on a disk that isn't formatted as FAT or NTFS.

The drive is toast.

reed_lewis | 03. Dezember 2018

Replace the USB stick. They are cheap enough and I make two copies of the drive I have for my car's audio. Plus all my audio is on my home server anyways so I create it again if I want to.

lexiharris | 07. März 2019

This is very bad, you may need to fix RAW files via NTFS / FAT. If the file is important, you may have to restore the RAW file.

psusi | 27. März 2019

@marlinputnam8745 what the hell? Why are you posting that to this thread? | 27. März 2019

@psusi - Classic spam from @marlinputnam8745. Take unrelated info, post it, and hope they can start fully spamming shortly. Flag it.

Big clue is user name with 4 random digits at the end. Almost always spammer or bot.

reed_lewis | 29. März 2019

Anyone who keeps important files on a USB stick without any backup will eventually lose that important data. A USB stick will always fail. They may work for a long time, but eventually, it will fail. | 29. März 2019

So much confusion on flash drives, formatting and lifetime that comes up in the forums every few days. I wrote up the details for formating, troubleshooting, avoiding fake drives and more. Written for Tesla dashcam feature, but much of it applies to music USB flash drives too: