I've created this Veracrypt USB storage once and never used it. I've forgotten the password but I still want to use this storage.

What should I do? When I plug I can't mount it because I don't have the password and I need to mount it in order to format it/reset it.

  • Formatting, ie. overwriting with a new filesystem, doesn't require mounting of the old one. ... What OS, and what preferred disk management tool?
    – deviantfan
    Commented Jul 24, 2017 at 18:19
  • I've used Windows for the moment and it did not work as I expected. Formatting did not succeed. Do you have any tools to recommend ?
    – Deewy
    Commented Jul 25, 2017 at 5:36
  • GParted (which is not on Windows). As WadihM writes below, Windows often can't even recoginze that it's eg. a writable device ... and it can't handle certain GPT layouts, and and and...
    – deviantfan
    Commented Jul 25, 2017 at 17:24

1 Answer 1


You don't need to mount the encrypted drive if you just want to discard the data on it and make it usable again.

I would recommend using Rufus to reformat it when you're having difficulties doing it with Windows.


This will turn it back into a usable disk.

  • Actually using another tool than Windows formatter worked. @Wadih M. gave me the idea to use a Live USB maker and it worked as a charm (the Fedora one).
    – Deewy
    Commented Jul 25, 2017 at 8:26
  • @Deewy happy to hear the answered helped you resolve your issue. I've had a similar issue in the past where Windows would not see a previously Mac-formatted USB disk at all so it wouldn't let me format it at all. You can mark this as answered it should compensate for the downvote I received.
    – Wadih M.
    Commented Jul 25, 2017 at 13:30
  • "This will erase the encrypted data" I think that's not what happens. The encrypted data will still be there, but with encrypted headers gone during the formatting it will be unrecoverable Commented Feb 14, 2019 at 3:29
  • @AlexeyAndronov you are right, thanks, I was trying to simplify the language but missed that slight aberration of language. I have removed that sentence completely to not inadvertently imply any wrong behavior, because ultimately the question was just about how to make the disk usable again. btw I found out your comment by chance though, please use @ to alert us of comments so we can come back and correct it!
    – Wadih M.
    Commented May 20, 2021 at 19:45

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