Portion of 64G Cruzer hidden and unaccessible

I have a 64G SanDisk Cruzer USB Thumb Drive.  I had some back up files on it which I was able to recover most; however, the files are not visible on the drive and the device volume incorrectly displays 32.31G when viewed in file explorer (Windows 8.1 platform) and further states that 0% of that 32.31 is utilized.  I want to reformat the drive buit it will only display the 32.31G for formatting which is clearly incorrect.  How can I get the disk back to factory defaults?

Did you partition the drive at some point?  Did some backup app partition the drive?  Windows only sees the 1st partition on removable drives but Linux can see all of them.  You could try downloading a Live Linux system and use it to access a 2nd partition on the drive.  Gparted is a good Linux app for working with partitions.

Thanks for the rapid reply… I did not partition the drive, but I DID interrupt an app from “initializing” the thumbdrive, but I thought I canceled the process before it started so that I could switch drives.  It never said it was going to partition the drive, it was supposed to be backing up the drive.  In any case, how can I merge the two partitions to return the drive to its original state of one large partition?  And as far as Linux goes, I wouldn’t know the first thing about running Linux on a Windows 8.1 laptop since I thought the two would be mutually exclusive of one another.  Thanks for the help!


:smiley:   Hi Tom,

Dear member of SanDisk Community, welcome.

Friend, perhaps when formatting with FAT32 your UFD (Cruzer 64 GB) in Windows,

caused the problem, because Windows puts limit of 32 GB to FAT32.


1-   Then, try to format your UFD (in Windows) with exFAT (you can have files larger size to 4 GB),

      and see if it gets ~59 GB, then it’s fine.

2-   Also, if you need FAT32 (you can have files size up to 4 Gb) on the Cruzer 64 GB,

      you can do with the tool (portable app, free): USB Flash Fat32 Format 1.01, portable app, free

Luck, and then you tell us, what happened, please.

Regards, Alfred.                                                           (Google translated)

"And as far as Linux goes, I wouldn’t know the first thing about running Linux on a Windows 8.1 laptop since I thought the two would be mutually exclusive of one another."

Actually it’s not as hard as you think.  Most Live Linux systems look a lot like Windows now days.  And booting one requires downloading a file and burning it to a CD or USB drive and changing your machine’s BIOS to read the CD or USB drive if present before the machine’s hard drive.  Check out Easy2Boot.com, it’s a free app.  And PenDriveLinux.com, also free.

BTW If you didn’t format the Cruzer before using it it is formated as exFAT.  That’s the factory default for large drives.  If you did format it that could explain your problem.

Attempted to format in exFAT, but 32 G is the only thing showing… the remaining 27 G partition has my lost files on it.

Thank you!!


OK… I purchased Gparted Live cd just to be sure I didn’t screw things up.  I went into my bios and set the boot sequence to boot from the optical drive.  The Gparted Live CD has the Debian version of GNU/Linux Live integrated with it.

I tried to use the software, but windows keeps booting instead, even though I have set the bios to boot from the d drive first.

Guess I’ll not get my original drive back!  Thanks for the attempted help!


" purchased"

:dizzy_face:  I do hope you didn’t spend much for it.  Do you have any other bootable CDs that you could test booting with? 

Is your machine relatively new?  ie Is it a UEFI machine?  If so to boot a non-UEFI device you also have to change the BIOS from UEFI mode to Legacy mode to boot the CD.

Should you wish to try a different Linux system, you can download a free app named Easy2Boot and any number of free Linux ISOs, I personally prefer one named Porteus, and create a new CD or USB drive and boot it to access your files.  While GParted is a good system you don’t need to repartition your USB drive to access the hidden files.  You simply need a system that supports reading all partitions on a removable drive and all Linux systems can do that.  Once you can read them you can copy your files to your machine’s C: drive.

See there’s still hope. :smiley: