7 Steps to Recover Formatted SD Card Easily

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Sometimes, we may inadvertently format a SD card from camera, phone or your computer. The formatting process simply empty the SD card, and all the photos, videos and files on the card will be removed after formatting.

Fortunately, if you have not taken many pictures or videos on the SD card after re-formatting, you have a good chance to recover them all, or most of the lost photos.

How to recover formatted SD card? If you want to find the data on the SD card, you may try the following steps to recover photos/videos from a formatted SD card:

Formatted SD Card Recovery Steps:

  1. Download CardRecovery software from CardRecovery.com.
  2. Install the software on your computer following the the setup wizard.
  3. Connect the memory card to your computer using a card reader. Most computers have an SD card slot somewhere on the side of the laptop, or front panel of desktop.
  4. Run CardRecovery, and choose the memory card drive letter as the source drive.
  5. Set a folder in your Documents or Pictures as the destination folder to save the recovered files. Data recovery software usually does not restore files to the source storage directly for data safety.
  6. Click Next button in CardRecovery and the software tool will fully scan the SD card. Depends on the capacity and reading speed of the card, the scan may take a few minutes to hours.
  7. The found photos and videos will be listed for preview. You may select the files you need to recover.

Supported SD card includes SD, SDHC, SDXC, microSD, microSD, microSDHC, microSDXC and XQD card.


If you need to recover a formatted microSD card from phone, or other devices, but you do not have a microSD card reader, you may need a microSD to standard SD adapter to convert it to a SD card, then insert it into your card reader slot of your computer.



How it works?

The root directory and files of the memory card are emptied and the file system is re-built by formatting, and the operating system, such as Android, Windows and Mac OS, will not consider that any data is stored in the memory card, so you cannot see any files on the card after format. However, *usually* disk formatting will not touch the data in the data storage area to save time. So in fact, the lost data is still stored in the SD card. At this point, if you write data to the SD memory card again, the new data will cover the data lost due to formatting, and eventually lead to the permanent loss of the data as well as the SD card complete data recovery opportunities. Therefore, in order to ensure that lost files can be recovered in good condition, please do not write new data to SD card after formatting.

Why we say “usually* the data lost due to format is recoverable. Some devices, or format software tools do wipe the data completely. In these cases, the data and files lost due to “deep” or “low level” format are not recoverable.

Looking for more details, and frequent asking questions/answers regarding recovering formatted SD card? Please click here.