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Why can't I format my SD card?
December 31, 2006 7:37 AM   Subscribe

Why can't I format my SD card?

Just got a 1GB Sandisk SD card. It works great in my camera, but is not recognized by XP on my Compaq Presario R3000z with a built-in card reader.
Double clicking in My Computer gives a "Please insert a disk into drive E:" or "Disk is not formatted" error. Properties tells me it's formatted RAW. Right-clicking >"Format..." does nothing. Formatting in the camera also changes nothing.
Is there a utility that can help me format it?
I also tried fdisk in a command window, but it tells me it's not a recognized command.
posted by bradn to Computers & Internet (9 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
 
not familiar with the Sandisk SD card , but the SD cards I have (of various brands) all have a little slide switch on one of the edges that "unlocks" them. They all read in the "locked" mode but will not write while "locked"
posted by digital-dragonfly at 8:13 AM on December 31, 2006


the switch is set to "unlocked"
posted by bradn at 8:15 AM on December 31, 2006


did you try the switch in the other position?
also I think you need to "format" before you "fdisk"
(could be wrong, as I live in a more linux-centric world)
posted by digital-dragonfly at 8:58 AM on December 31, 2006


I tried the switch in both positions. Formatting does nothing, and I just tried "format e:" in a command window, received the error: "Error in IOCTL call"
posted by bradn at 9:09 AM on December 31, 2006


If you have another card reader lying about, see if it works in there. (If you connect your camera via USB, some cameras will present any inserted memory card as a disk.)

It's possible the card is defective. I had that happen to one of mine, although it also hung up the camera I was trying to use it in.
posted by kindall at 9:28 AM on December 31, 2006


Try formatting it in the camera and then try it again on the PC.

If that doesn't work, see if the problem is the card or the card reader by hooking your camera up (with the card in it) to your computer via USB. Turn the camera on, and it should effectively work as a card reader itself.
posted by ztdavis at 4:01 PM on December 31, 2006


One more factor that was recently an issue for me is the driver of the internal card reader... for me, the threshold was anything greater than 1GB would show up in My Computer but wasn't accessible--an update driver (coincidentally released the week before) fixed the problem completely. Check with Compaq support?
posted by zachxman at 7:22 PM on December 31, 2006


if there aren't any photos on the card, try formatting it in your pc using the fat32 file system and then putting it in your camera
posted by killa62 at 9:56 PM on December 31, 2006


zachxman, thanks. It was the driver for the internal card reader. Working great now.
posted by bradn at 4:51 PM on January 1, 2007


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