Ways to Repair Corrupted USB Drives on Mac Devices


The USB flash drive is well known for its portability. However, with the time of improperly plugging in and out increases, the USB drives can get corrupted or damaged. Just a quick recall, do you unmount and safely eject the drive every time after using it? Or you just plug it out whenever you are done with it? 

For a problematic flash drive, you’ll find unsuccessful access to corrupted USB flash drives and no longer approach the files within. So, if you still want to open and view the content in your drive, how to repair corrupted USB drive becomes vitally urgent. Don’t worry, this post will walk you through detailed solutions to repair USB drive and give you practical suggestions on how to avoid this situation on Mac devices.

What to do to repair a corrupted USB drive

In general, there are two types of damage to your drive. One is physical damage, such as an accidental bump, and the other is logical damage. For physical damage, it’s almost a dream to repair it by yourself. The best you can do is to find a local disk specialist for help. However, if your disk suffers from logical errors, it’s possible to repair it even running native macOS applications. Let’s see how that works.

Repair corrupted disk by running First Aid

Lucky for corrupted drive owners, macOS has a built-in application designed to fix minor issues of your drive, First Aid in Disk Utility. Want to know how to use? Follow the steps below.

Step 1: Go to Launchpad on the dock.

Step 2: Find the folder Other, and open it.

Step 3: Select Disk Utility to launch it.

Step 4: Locate and click on the corrupted USB drive from all listed drives on the left sidebar.

Step 5: Click First Aid on the top of the menu. Then click Run to start the process.

After the whole process is completed, try access your drive again. Can you open and view the files now? If not, is there any method worth trying?

Repair corrupted disk by reformatting the drive

Reformatting your drive means wiping away all the data within and writes a new file system into it. So, as you may notice, the biggest thing of this method is that it takes away all your previous data. It would be perfect if you don’t care about the files within, but normally, you’ll try to save the data as much as you can, right? Under this circumstance, professional data recovery can take very good care of you, such as iBoysoft Data Recovery. Here’s how you can recover lost data from corrupted USB drives.

Step 1: Download and install iBoysoft Data Recovery from its official site.

Step 2: Plug in your flash drive and make sure it’s connected with your Mac. Launch the software. 

Step 3: Select the USB drive and click Scan. You can also select deep scan if necessary. 

Step 4: Wait till the scanning process completes. Then preview and filter the results to better locate the files you want to restore. 

Step 5: Click your targets and hit Recover. Don’t forget to save these files in a new folder other than the old location. 

After kindly dealing with the files, you can move forward to reformatting. Let’s start fixing a corrupted USB drive on Mac.

Step 1: Open Disk Utility again and find your drive on the left sidebar. 

Step 2: Select the drive and click Erase on the top of the menu. You’ll be asked to give a name, format, and scheme to the newly formatted drive. Life advice, select FAT as the format if you may connect the drive with a Windows PC. 

Step 3: Click Erase again to fulfill the reformatting process. Note: Do not mess with your drive during reformatting. Just leave it there to complete.

Step 4: Once it’s done, click Done and you are free to quit Disk Utility.  

Try to open the drive now. It should work perfectly.

How can you avoid a corrupted USB drive?

There are many ways to take good care of your drive to avoid trouble in the future. For example:

  • Handle it carefully and store it in a safe environment. Try not to bend it by force or drop it from a high altitude. Also, don’t place the drive in a humid or wet environment.
  • Safely eject the drive every time using it. Make sure you’ve completed writing to the drive and it’s unmounted from macOS. Then you can remove the drive.


While it’s highly portable, USB flash drive is also vulnerable to both physical and logical damages. This post offers two feasible ways to fix a corrupted USB flash drive and hope them work for you. Meanwhile, one thing users should pay attention is to take care of the drive in daily use since that could avoid further problems. 

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