Restore Corrupted USB Drive To Original State In Linux

Many times our storage devices like sd cards and Pen drives get corrupted and unusable due to one or other reasons.   It may be because of making a bootable media with that device, formatting via wrong platforms or creating partitions in that device.  

Restore Corrupted USB Drive to Original state

linux system disk manager

Warning: The following procedure will format all your data from your device   Whatever the reason, the final outcome is that we are not able to use that device.
So here is a solution to restoring a corrupted USB drive or sd card to its original working state.

Most of the time a simple format via the file browser solves the problem, But for extreme cases where the file manager isn’t helpful and you need your device working, you can follow this guide.

We will be using a small tool called mkusb for this purpose. The installation is easy.

Add the repository tor mkusb.

sudo apt add repository ppa:mkusb/ppa 

Now, Update your package lists.

sudo apt-get update 

Install mkusb
sudo apt-get install mkusb 

Now launch mkusb. You will get this prompt, click ‘Yes’.

run mkusb dus

Now mkusb will ask you one last time if you wish to proceed with the formatting of the data, ‘Stop’ will be selected by default. You now select ‘Go’ and click ‘OK’.

linux mkusb

​The window will close and your terminal will look like this.


In a few seconds, the process will be completed and you will get a window popup like this.


You need to now remove the device from the system and plug it back in. Your device is Restored to a normal device and it will function properly like before.

linux disk manager

Now I know all of these could have been done via terminal commands, GParted or some other software, etc. But that would require some level of knowledge about partition management.​So it’s always good to have a small tool like this to automate the boring work for you.  


mkusb is a fairly easy to use program that can help you repair your USB storage devices and sd cards. It is available through the mkusb ppa as mkusb. All operations on mkusb will require superuser permissions and all your data on that device will be formatted.

Once the operation is completed You will have to reattach the device to make it work. ​​If you have any queries feel free to post them in the comments section below.


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3 Comments Text
  • Thanks for the article. In my case “sudo apt add repository ppa:mkusb/ppa ” didn’t work .
    I used sudo apt-add-repository ppa:mkusb/ppa
    Also the update command didn’t take any arguments it was just “sudo apt update”
    Finally, the last command — sudo apt-get Install mkusb didn’t work I had to change the uppercase I in Install to i (install)

  • how do I know it will do the magic with my intended HHD?
    I tend to use slacko which is started by a USB stick.

    Not that familiar anymore with linux.. it was a while ago when I used it regulary

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