I tried to format the drive using disk utility and following the steps given in the link below:

Visit How to format a USB or external drive?

But unfortunately this error keeps popping up every time I try formatting:

Error creating file system: Command-line mkfs.vfat -I -n "New Volume" "/dev/sdc1" exited with non-zero exit status 1:
stdout: mkfs.vfat 3.0.14 (23 Jan 2023)

stderr: `mkfs.vfat: /dev/sdc1 contains a mounted file system.
' (udisks-error-quark, 0)

3 Answers 3


First Unmount the usb drive and then try to format it.

  • Open Gparted partition Editor from Dash.

  • Look for the Usb drive (in your case it is /dev/sdc)

  • Then right-click on the partition inside the disk /dev/sdc that is /dev/sdc1 and format it to fat32 filesystem.


Try the below commands on terminal,

sudo umount /dev/sdc1
mkfs.vfat -I -n "New Volume" "/dev/sdc1"

You can use the GUI application "Disks" that comes with Ubuntu. Search for "Disks" in Dash and you choose your USB from the leftmost column and select the settings button in the right corner and select format. You can even choose the formatting type there.


You'll have to first unmount the partition/disk that you want to format. You can do this in many different ways, but as I see you're using Disk Utility, and there you can get the disk unmounted by clicking the Unmount Volume button; and then continue to format the disk.


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