How To Format SD Card Without Losing Data

If you’re reading this, you probably want to format your sd card or you’re interested in formatting your sd card in the near future without losing all the important things you have on it. well, if that’s true, then this post is highly beneficial for you.

Here I will be explaining “how to format your sd card without losing data” detailing some of the easiest and most common ways to do it.

Today Android phones are coming with ample storage space so much that one doesn’t need an SD card. SD cards are capable of being damaged or corrupted, which poses a risk to the user’s data stored on the card and also affects the phone’s processing. In case you still use an SD card for that extra storage in your Android phone, learn how to fix a corrupted SD card without losing files

Signs of SD Card Errors

SD card is commonly used for storing valuable photos which record precious memories. Therefore, all users, including you must be unwilling to accept SD card corruption. To prevent it, you ought to first learn how to identify its signs in time

  • It does not appear in the file explorer of the phone or shows the folder size as 0 bytes.
  • The PC, when connected, is unable to identify the location of the card.
  • Missing files.
  • A “Cannot Read from the Device” warning is given.
  • Initialization failure of the system.
  • Memory card error appears when trying to use the card.

If you have witnessed more than one such issue in your Android phone’s SD card, consider repairing it before further damage is done.

Fixing A Corrupted SD Card: Step by Step guide

Insert the Card into a Different Device

The first and foremost step is to check the compatibility of the SD card with your phone, which can be done by inserting the erroneous SD card into another device such as a laptop or a smartphone. The card working correctly in that device indicates a file system error on your Android phone. The next step, in this case, would be to create a backup in the said device as a safety measure, restart your phone and insert the SD card again.

Check for Errors Using Windows Tool

In case the aforementioned hit-and-trial method doesn’t work, follow these steps to fix errors in the SD card:
Connect the card with a Windows PC running on the 10, 8, or 7 versions via the USB port with the help of a USB card reader.

Once the folder of the SD card appears in the My Computer/This PC window, right-click on it to open its Properties.
Press the Tools bar in the Properties section and locate the Error Checking option. Under that, click on Check. Windows will now scan the SD card for system-based discrepancies.

How to insert Micro SD card in Laptop without Adapter - Hackanons

How to Fix Corrupted SD Card Using the CHKDSK Command

  • This method allows you to log in as an administrator and run commands for fixing the SD card. However, this should only be followed if you have prior technical knowledge of the computer’s operating system since there are chances of data getting lost in the process of repair. It is advisable to create a backup or use third-party file recovery software before the command is run.
  • Firstly, insert the corrupted card into the PC and then locate the same in My Computer/This PC. Identify the letter of the hard drive, which in many cases, is G:
  • In the Search area of the Task Bar, type cmd to find the Command Prompt tool and select the Run as Administrator option after right-clicking on it.
  • Type in chkdsk /X /f sd_card_letter: or chkdsk sd_card_letter: /f. For instance, if the card shows on your PC as E, Windows will check your MicroSD/SD card for errors and fix them without clearing any data;
  • Note that the procedure could take several minutes, according to the size of your card;
  • At this point, let’s hope that you will see “Windows has made corrections to the file system” in the command window. This means that the damaged SD card is successfully fixed and you can finally see your data again.

How to format sd card using disk drill

For a guaranteed recovery, we’ll use Disk Drill’s Byte-to-byte backup feature (completely FREE) to create an “image backup” of your SD card before formatting it. This “image backup” is a clone of your SD card with 100% of the data preserved.

We’ll show you how to do it from start to finish:

Disk Drill will recognize your SD card even if File Explorer can’t. As long as your SD card is visible in Device Manager, you can clone it.
  1. Make sure your SD card is securely connected to your computer, then download and install Disk Drill.
  2. Launch Disk Drill. On the left sidebar, click “Drive backup.” Select your SD card from the middle pane and click “Byte-to-byte backup.” If you’re using a USB-type card reader, it may be labeled as a “Generic Storage Device.”
    Disk Drill Byte-to-byte backup drive selection screen
  3. In the dialogue box that appears, name the backup file and select a destination folder on your computer where Disk Drill will save it. Click “OK.”
    Disk Drill create backup dialogue
  4. Take note of the folder path you selected, as we’ll be using it in the next step. Click the back button to return to Disk Drill’s initial window.
    Disk Drill backup created screen
  5. On the left sidebar, click “Data Recovery” and click “Attach disk/image” from the middle pane.
    Disk Drill Attach disk image button
  6. Select the image backup we just created and click “Open.”
    Disk Drill attach image dialogue
  7. From the middle pane, select your image backup and click “Search for lost data.”
    Disk Drill drive selection screen
  8. Wait for Disk Drill to complete its scan, then click “Review found items.”
    DIsk Drill scanning screen
  9. You can use the search bar and the sidebar to look for specific files, and you can preview any file by hovering your mouse beside its file name and clicking the eye button that appears. The preview feature is particularly useful as data recovery software doesn’t always retrieve original file names.
    Disk Drill SD card file preview
  10. Use the checkboxes in the leftmost column to select the files you want to recover, then click “Recover.” You can also leave all the boxes blank and click “Recover all…”
    Disk Drill file selection
  11. Use the folder button to select a location on your computer where you want Disk Drill to save the recovered files. Then, click “OK.”
    Disk Drill save file dialogue


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