How do i remove write protection from usb stick

Last Updated: Feb 26, 2024 by

If you’ve ever tried to save a file or transfer data to a USB stick, only to be met with an error message stating that the device is write-protected, you’re not alone. This common issue can be frustrating and confusing, especially if you’re not sure how to fix it.

In this article, we’ll explain what write protection is, why it happens, and most importantly, how to remove it from your USB stick.

What is Write Protection?

Write protection is a security feature that prevents data from being written, modified, or deleted on a storage device, such as a USB stick. This feature is designed to protect important files from being accidentally deleted or modified.

When a USB stick is write-protected, you can still view and copy files from it, but you cannot save or modify any data on the device. This can be problematic if you need to add or update files on your USB stick.

Why Does Write Protection Happen?

There are a few reasons why your USB stick may be write-protected. The most common causes include:

  • A physical switch on the USB stick is set to the “lock” position
  • The USB stick is corrupted or damaged
  • The device is infected with a virus or malware
  • The USB stick is set to read-only mode
  • The device is write-protected by the operating system

How to Remove Write Protection from USB Stick

Now that you understand what write protection is and why it happens, let’s explore how to remove it from your USB stick.

Method 1: Check the Physical Switch

Some USB sticks have a physical switch that allows you to enable or disable write protection. This switch is usually located on the side or bottom of the device and is labeled with a lock or key symbol.

If your USB stick has a physical switch, make sure it is set to the “unlock” position. This will allow you to write, modify, and delete files on the device.

Method 2: Scan for Viruses and Malware

If your USB stick is infected with a virus or malware, it may be write-protected to prevent further damage to your computer. To remove write protection, you’ll need to scan your device for viruses and malware using a reliable antivirus software.

Make sure to update your antivirus software before scanning your USB stick. Once the scan is complete, follow the prompts to remove any threats found on your device.

Method 3: Format the USB Stick

Formatting your USB stick will erase all data on the device, including the write protection setting. This method should only be used as a last resort, as it will permanently delete all files on your USB stick.

To format your USB stick, follow these steps:

  1. Connect your USB stick to your computer.
  2. Open “My Computer” or “This PC” and locate your USB stick.
  3. Right-click on the USB stick and select “Format”.
  4. In the format window, make sure the “Quick Format” option is unchecked.
  5. Click “Start” to begin the formatting process.
  6. Once the process is complete, your USB stick will no longer be write-protected.

Method 4: Use Diskpart Command

If the above methods do not work, you can try using the Diskpart command to remove write protection from your USB stick. This method requires the use of the command prompt, so it may be a bit more technical.

Follow these steps to use the Diskpart command:

  1. Connect your USB stick to your computer.
  2. Press the Windows key + R to open the Run dialog box.
  3. Type “cmd” and press Enter to open the command prompt.
  4. In the command prompt, type “diskpart” and press Enter.
  5. Type “list disk” and press Enter to view a list of all connected storage devices.
  6. Identify your USB stick by its size and note the disk number.
  7. Type “select disk disk number” and press Enter. Replace disk number with the number of your USB stick.
  8. Type “attributes disk clear readonly” and press Enter.
  9. Close the command prompt and check if the write protection has been removed from your USB stick.

Preventing Write Protection on Your USB Stick

Now that you know how to remove write protection from your USB stick, you may be wondering how to prevent it from happening in the future. Here are a few tips to help you avoid write protection on your USB stick:

  • Always eject your USB stick properly before removing it from your computer.
  • Avoid using your USB stick on multiple devices, as this can increase the risk of viruses and malware.
  • Keep your antivirus software up to date and regularly scan your USB stick for threats.
  • Invest in a high-quality USB stick from a reputable brand to reduce the risk of physical damage or corruption.


Write protection on your USB stick can be a frustrating issue, but it can be easily resolved by following the methods outlined in this article. Remember to check for a physical switch, scan for viruses and malware, format the device, or use the Diskpart command to remove write protection.

By understanding the causes of write protection and taking preventative measures, you can ensure that your USB stick remains accessible and functional for all your data storage needs.

Gulrukh Ch

About the Author: Gulrukh Ch

Gulrukh Chaudhary, an accomplished digital marketer and technology writer with a passion for exploring the frontiers of innovation. Armed with a Master's degree in Information Technology, Gulrukh seamlessly blends her technical prowess with her creative flair, resulting in captivating insights into the world of emerging technologies. Discover more about her on her LinkedIn profile.