This article was previously published under Q329971
This article has been archived. It is offered "as is" and will no longer be updated.
When you try to format a hard disk (in My Computer, right-click the hard disk, and then click Format), you may notice that both the File system list and the Allocation unit size list do not contain any entries. You cannot format the drive.
This behavior may occur in the following situation:
The hard disk is larger than 32 gigabytes (GB).
The hard disk is either a removable drive or an external drive that is optimized for quick removal.
To work around this problem, reconfigure the drive so that it is not optimized for quick removal. To do so:
Click Start, right-click My Computer, and then click Manage.
Under Storage, click Disk Management.
In the lower portion of the right pane, right-click Disk number (where number is the number of the hard disk that you want to optimize, for example, Disk 1), and then click Properties.
Click the Policies tab, click Optimize for performance, and then click OK.
If you are prompted to restart the computer, quit all running programs, and then click Yes.
Microsoft has confirmed that this is a problem in the Microsoft products that are listed at the beginning of this article.
Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition (32-bit x86), Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition (32-bit x86), Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition (32-bit x86), Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Enterprise x64 Edition, Microsoft Windows Server 2003, 64-Bit Datacenter Edition, Microsoft Windows Server 2003, Web Edition, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2003 Standard Edition, Microsoft Windows Small Business Server 2003 Premium Edition