Windows WD Quick Formatter Not Showing 4096 to 512 Sector Format Option

This is kind of a reply to romolo1’s “WD Quick Formatter not allowing 4k to 512 sector format” thread (which is locked so I can’t reply to it).

Certain backup operations, such as creating a disk clone may require your >2TB Advanced Format disk to support 512e. The actual WD drive in your WD USB enclosure probably does support 512e, however the USB-to-SATA bridge chip hides 512e compatibility and shows the drive as 4096 native. The WD Quick Formatter tool can be used to change the USB-to-SATA bridge chip’s firmware setting to show the drive as 512e.

I noticed that, as of version 1.2.0.10 of the Windows WD Quick Formatter tool, that the tool checks what Windows OS you are running and only provides the options to change the drive sector format when you’re running Windows Vista or Windows 7. Their main reason for doing this is because they don’t want the options to show up for Windows XP users (because Windows XP doesn’t work properly with 512e drives). However it seems WD forgot to update their tool and white-list Windows 8.0 (in my testing) and probably any Windows versions above 8.0. There is a workaround, besides having to find a running copy of Windows Vista or 7 to run the tool on. Here is the workaround:

Right click on "WD Quick Formatter.exe"
Click on "Properties"
Go to the "Compatibility" tab
Check "Run this program in compatibility mode for:"
Select "Windows 7" from the drop down
Press "OK"
Now go ahead and run "WD Quick Formatter.exe"

This is in relation to these WD KB articles:


Hello,

Thanks for sharing.

Hope this helps romolo1

1 Like