How to format an SD card ?

SD memory cards may present errors when used in devices such as cell phones, music players, cameras…. This situation can be caused by the type of file systems of the card and its compatibility with the device as well as errors in the partitions or corruption in the files. However, you will be able to format these removable storage media to restore and use your SD card as normal.

5 tips for formatting a memory card

Tip #1: Format from a computer

One of the most common ways to format an SD card is to insert it into a computer to use the formatting tools provided by the operating systems. To insert it effectively, the computer must have an SD card reader port, otherwise you can use a USB adapter for your SD card.

When the computer detects the SD card, it will automatically display a list of options for managing the storage media. You can close this list and go to the “Computer” or “This PC” option in the Start menu. Here, you will see all removable and non-removable storage drives, select the one that corresponds to your SD card, right-click your cursor or mouse, and click on the format option.

This procedure will open a small window where you can select the file system you want to install on the card and also add a new label or name to the card.

Tip #2: Formatting in Diskpart

Once you are in the “Command Prompt” console, you must follow the following steps:

  1. At the command prompt, type diskpart and then press enter
  2. Type list disk and press enter, this will generate a list of all available drives.
  3. Type select disk + disk # and press enter (the # sign should be replaced with the number assigned to the SD card), this will allow you to select the drive you want to format.
  4. Type clean and press enter. This will clean or remove all existing data and partitions on the memory card.
  5. Type create partition primary and press enter. This will create a new partition.
  6. Type one of the following commands according to your needs: format fs=ntfs or format fs=exfat, then press enter.
  7. Type assign letter= # to assign a letter to the storage drive (replace # with the letter of your choice) and then press enter.

Tip #3: Change the letter of the driver name

If you only want to change the drive letter of the storage drive, which is automatically assigned by the operating system, you must select the following options Computer/Manage/Disk Manager. Once there, you must select Change drive letter and paths, assign a new available letter from the drop-down list and click OK.

Tip #4: Reinstall the drivers

If your computer does not have the necessary drivers to manage your SD card the most recommended option is to download the latest driver from the website of your computer manufacturer or your operating system. After downloading the driver you must run its installation wizard. Once the driver is installed and you restart your computer you will be able to use the SD card normally.

Tip #5: Run CHKDSK to fix SanDisk Habit SD card format error

This is a method that will allow you to fix a card error without formatting, so you will not lose important information. You must enter the “Command Prompt” console, in the same way as was done in tip #2. You must type the command chkdsk #: /F (changing # for the letter that your SD memory card has).

Using /F in the command will fix errors present in the system that prevent the memory card from working properly. You can also use /R in the command, so you can repair bad sectors on the storage drive and even retrieve information.

If these commands do not work, you will have to format and it is unlikely that you will be able to recover the data from the SD card.

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