How to Fix “USB 0 Bytes Cannot Format” Issue on Windows 10/8/7?

November 16, 2018

Wonder why your USB/memory card/micro SD card shows o bytes and you cannot format it successfully as usual? Find causes for the error and learn how to format 0 bytes USB drive with ease.


Hi, experts! Whenever I tried to open my USB flash drive on Windows computer, I will receive a prompt message saying “You need to format it before you can use it”. But when I attempt to format the drive, it returns the warning: There is no disk in drive X. Insert a disk, and then try again. I viewed the properties of the USB flash drive and found that it was 0 bytes in used space, 0 bytes in free space as well. What can I do to fix such problem? Any solution will be greatly appreciated.


What triggers USB showing 0 bytes?

Many Windows users have suffered from 0 bytes errors, such as USB flash drives showing 0 bytes free/used space, SD memory card 0 bytes free/used space, or external hard drives 0 bytes, etc. Why this happen? In general, any of the following situations would trigger USB showing 0 bytes.

1. USB flash drive is corrupted due to virus intrusion, or the MBR gets damaged.

2. The formatting process gets failed due to some reasons.

3. There are some bad sectors on flash drive.

4. There is physical problem on the USB flash drive, such as circuits or boards fails to work.

5. Power failure. Abrupt power failure while disk is writing data would damage the file system.

6.  Unplug the USB drive without ejecting or safely removing it.

Cannot format 0 bytes USB flash drive in Windows

When the USB flash drive or other device shows 0 bytes in used and free space, most computer users will choose to format it directly to repair it. But from the first section (Scenario), we can easily know that the formatting 0 bytes USB does not always go smoothly. And some common error messages might pop out and prevent you from formatting the drive successfully like “There is no disk in drive X. Insert a disk, and then try again”, “Windows was unable to complete the format” and more.

Format 0 bytes USB successfully via a free partition manager software

If you are being irritated with “USB 0 bytes cannot format” issue, you can try a 3rd party software to fulfill the formatting task. Here we highly recommend AOMEI Partition Assistant. It is a free yet powerful partition manager software, which could forcefully format write-protected disk, corrupted hard drives. So, worth a shot.

Note: since formatting will delete all data on the USB drive, try to recover important data from it if possible. Recoverit Pro can be a perfect choice for that.

Steps to format USB drive which shows 0 bytes in Windows 10

Step 1. Download, install and run the freeware. Right click the USB drive and select Format Partition.

Format Partition

Step 2. Choose your desired file system (ex: FAT32), and click OK.

Choose File System

Step 3. Back to the main interface, click Apply->Proceed to start format the disk.


Other ways to Fix USB 0 bytes besides formatting

Well, formatting is not the only way to solve USB drive/SD card/memory card showing 0 bytes. If you don’t want to take a risk of data loss during repairing 0 byte disks, try the following methods.

#1. Update the USB driver or reinstall the USB in Device Manager

Enter into Device Manager by Selecting the Start button, typing Device Manager, and select it from the list of results.

Expand the category with the hardware you want to update, then right-click it to select Update Driver.

Or select Uninstall to uninstalled USB, then removed it from your computer and plugged back after a while.

#2. Scan and repair bad sectors on USB in Windows Explorer

If there are some bad sectors in your USB drive, it will probably show 0 bytes. So it is necessary to check bad sectors and repair them.

Open Windows File Explorer, right click the partition of USB drive and get Properties window, then click Tool >Check now. Then tick both options in the pop-out window and click on Start.

Scan Check USB

#3. Fix MBR for USB flash drive

If the MBR of USB flash drive is damaged, you can rebuild it via AOMEI Partition Assistant.

Rebuild MBR

All in all, when you cannot format USB, memory card or hard drive reporting 0 bytes, AOMEI Partition Assistant can be a great tool. Moreover, you can upgrade to Professional version to enjoy more advanced features, like recover lost partitions Windows 10/8/7.