If you are going to use your old memory card on another device like your smartphone or camera, it is advisable to do a quick format before inserting it to your device. Formatting your card before using it on another device can avoid errors and problems while using your camera or smartphone.
In this guide, we will show you different ways on how you can format your old SD Card on Windows 10.
Format Your SD Card Using The Built-in Windows Tool
Windows has a simple tool that you can use to format your sd card and other removable storage. To guide you in using the tool, follow the steps below.
- On your computer, press Windows Key + S and search for “This PC“.
- Open This PC then, on the side menu, find your SD Card.
- Next, right-click on your SD card. This will prompt a selection list to appear.
- Find Format and click it.
- Now, the Windows Format tool will launch. Inside the tool, find the File System tab and press it.
- After that, this will open a drop-down menu. Select your preferred file system type, for this tutorial we are going to use FAT32.
- Next, check the Quick Format option then click Start.
- Lastly, wait for the process to finish then right-click on your SD card on This PC and Eject it.
Format SD Card Using Command Prompt
In some cases, the Windows tool may fail in reformatting your memory card. However, you can still use the command prompt to try and format your SD Card.
You can follow the steps below to format your SD card using the command prompt.
- Open your computer then, press on Windows Key + S and search for Command Prompt.
- Run the Command Prompt. After that, type “diskpart” and hit Enter.
- After launching DiskPart, type “list disk” and press Enter on your keyboard.
- Now, find your SD card on the list of storage devices. In our case, it is Disk 1.
- Next, type “select disk 1” to make your SD card as the target storage.
- Lastly, type “format fs=fat32 quick” and hit Enter. This will start the formatting process. It may take several seconds to complete depending on the files inside your card.
Use Disk Management to Format your SD Card on Windows
If you don’t want to use the command line in formating your card you can use Windows Disk Management to reformat your SD Card. To know how to format SD Card on Windows 10, follow the step-by-step guide below.
- Press on Windows Key + S and search for Create and Format Hard Disk Partitions. Then, open it.
- Now, inside the disk management. Find your SD card and right-click on it.
- On the pop-up selection, select Format.
- A prompt will pop-up asking you if you want to proceed to format your memory card. Click on Yes.
- Next, verify the details of your card then click on Ok.
- Lastly, wait for the process to finish then you can plug in your SD card to your device.
How to Remove Write Protection on Your SD Card
In some cases, you might not be able to format your SD Card due to write protection. So, in order for you to format your card, you would first need to disable the write protection.
In disabling write protection on your SD card, you can follow the guide below.
- Press on Windows Key + S and search for Command Prompt.
- On the Command Prompt, type “diskpart” and hit Enter.
- After opening DiskPart, type “list disk” and press Enter.
- Now, find your memory card on the list of storage devices. In our case, it is Disk 1.
- Next, type “select disk 1” to make your card as the target storage.
- Lastly, type “attributes disk clear readonly” and hit Enter. This will disable the write protection on your SD card. Now, you can try to format your memory card again and see if removing the write protection worked.
Now, if you still can’t format your card after removing write protection. It is possible that your memory card is failing and you need to replace it to prevent data corruption and file loss. Check out some of our SD card reviews to give you some options to consider if you decide to replace your SD Card.
- Sandisk Extreme SD Memory Card (32GB-1TB) for Photo/Video
- HUGE 1TB Capacity SanDisk Micro SD Cards! [Review]
Best SD Card Reader For Your Laptop and Desktop
More often than not, modern desktops and laptops don’t have a built-in SD Card reader. In this case, here are some card readers that you can consider buying if you want to connect your SD card to your computer.
SanDisk ImageMate Pro Multi-Card Reader
SanDisk also sells memory card readers that offers a lot of performance for a cheap price. The Image Mate pro is a budget-friendly SD card reader for your computer. It has support for USB 3.0 Gen 1 which can reach speeds of up to 5 Gigabits per second.
ProGrade Digital Card Reader USB 3.1 Gen 2
Priced at $60 on Amazon, the ProGrade Digital Card Reader has a lot to offer. It features a USB 3.1 Gen 2 which can reach speeds of more than 5 Gigabits per second which is great especially when transferring large files to your computer. It comes with a magnetic plate that attaches to your laptop or desktop so that you can carry the memory card reader around conveniently.
If you want to learn more about SD Card Adapters, check out our full review of the best SD card readers in the market today.
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