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Cannot partition USB Flash Drive

1296 Views 5 Replies Latest reply: May 20, 2012 5:49 AM by thomas_r. RSS
duds888 Calculating status...
Currently Being Moderated
May 20, 2012 4:51 AM



I have recently bought a 32GB USB Flash Drive which I carry on my house keys. I want to create two partitions one of which I would like to be password protected, the second open and accessable without a password.


I know how to partition a drive as have successfully done so with my external back-up drives. However after partitioning the USB Flash Drive one of the partitions will not mount, moreover it does not take on the name I try to give it but defualts to "disk1s2". This unmountable partition cannot be verified or repaired.


Has anyone come across this, is it a fault with the drive or is partitioning flash drives just not possible?




Mac OS X (10.7.4)
  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (26,980 points)
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    May 20, 2012 5:23 AM (in response to duds888)

    This is not a direct answer to the question of partitioning a flash drive, but there's a better solution.  Create an encrypted disk image file and put that on the flash drive.  Store all your sensitive files in there.  This works on all Macs without the need for any third-party software, though not on Windows machines.  So if you need to access that data from a Windows machine as well, you'll need to find another solution.

  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (26,980 points)
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    May 20, 2012 5:43 AM (in response to duds888)

    You can not only set a size for the disk image file, you can also make it a "sparse bundle" that is capable of growing as necessary to accommodate whatever you put in it.  Much better than a partition.


    And yes, the data is secured on any platform.  If you lose the flash drive, there's no way with current technology for someone to decrypt that file and get your data out, unless you choose a weak password that they are able to guess.

  • thomas_r. Level 7 Level 7 (26,980 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    May 20, 2012 5:49 AM (in response to duds888)

    No, sparse bundles only grow, they don't shrink.  There are ways to shrink them, though.  See:



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