Flash drive not showing correct capacity. What are possible efforts to save it


I have a USB flash drive that I know has ~32 GB capacity:

Kingston Digital 32GB USB 3.0 DataTraveler (DTR30G2/32GB). I purchased it 2 years ago and have been using it in the FAT32 file system. For 2 years it has had 32 GB capacity.

Today, however, Windows 7 says the flash drive is empty and that its capacity is only ~200 MB. Since I only ever use the flash drive to transfer data between computers, and not to archive data, losing the data is no problem. But I do want its full capacity!

So, I reformatted it using Windows 7. But even after reformatting, Windows still shows its capacity as 200 MB. I reformatted both with and without the Quick Format option, but the outcome is the same — its capacity is only 200 MB.

USB overview

As a test, I tried to copy ~400 MB of files to the flash drive (in case Windows was only displaying the incorrect capacity), but Windows will not let me:

USB copy files

Finally, I connected the flash drive to a different laptop — a MacBook Pro (since FAT32 is compatible with Windows and Mac) — but OS X too says it is 200 MB, even after I reformat it on that machine.

Does all of this indicate that the flash drive is "dead"? Is there anything else I can try in order to save it?

Best Answer

As you have stated that losing the data is not an issue:

Plug the flash drive into your computer with Windows and enter


Once you're in diskpart, enter

list disk

When you have the number of the flash drive, enter

select disk #

Afterwards, enter


After this is done, you can go into diskmgmt.msc and you should see the full capacity. Go ahead and create a new simple volume, choose the file system, and format it.