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Re: Debian Live USB fails; bricks the USB stick

On Wed, Nov 8, 2017 at 8:49 AM, Kent West <westk@xxxxxxx> wrote:

The somewhat-still-working stick, when inserted into the iMac, brings up a pop-up window that says "The disk you inserted was not readable by this computer. Ignore/Eject". Disk Utility sees it as an "Unknown" disk2s2 426KB external drive. But it lets me try to Erase it, although that results in an error saying "Couldn't modify partition map." I tried all four formatting options (Mac OS Extended Journaled, Mac OS Extended Case-sensitive Journaled, ExFAT, MS-DOS (FAT)). I tried tinkering with the Security Options.

If it had been one stick, I would just assume the stick had gone bad. But two sticks, at the same time, happening by the same process, sure seems suspicious.

I just plugged the somewhat-still-working stick into a different iMac; the first one was running Sierra; this one is running Yosemite. The Yosemite Mac's Disk Utility gives me more info (it's stupid to me that the newer the OS, the less informative the tools, as a trend).

It actually sees the whole 4.03 GB stick, not just the "disk2s2" slice, but it won't let me to anything to it, saying "This disk is not writable and can't be partitioned" It says S.M.A.R.T. is not supported, that the Write Status is Read Only, that the Partition Map Scheme is Master Boot Record, and that it's USB Flash Media.

I think y'all are right about the two sticks being kicked into "last resort mode", where the internal Read-only switch is triggered (I've been unable to find an external switch).

It's just really odd that two differently-manufactured/aged sticks went bad at the same time, when trying to do the same operation with them, on a good Dell box that's been running Debian for 4 years without any glitches whatsoever.

Just to round out the OSes, I'll go see if I can find a Windows machine.

Yep, Windows 10 Disk Manager can't see the one as anything more than existing, and can see the other one only as Read-Only, with no options to do anything with it. Looks like I'll be tossing these sticks.

Kent West                    <")))><
Westing Peacefully - http://kentwest.blogspot.com