If you are unable to format your SD card on a Windows 11/10 PC then this post is sure to help you. SD cards are used to store additional information. Now, you might want to format an SD card for cleaning up all the data from it. However, some users have reported of being experiencing the problem where their SD card just won’t format. If you are one of those users facing the same issues, this post is for you. In this post, we are going to mention some working fixes that should help you format your SD card.
Before we talk about the working fixes, let us discuss the scenarios which don’t let you format your SD card.
Why am I unable to format my SD card?
There can be different reasons that trigger this problem for individuals. Here are the most common causes that don’t let you format your SD card:
- In a general scenario, you are most probably to face this issue if you have the write protection enabled on your SD card. So, make sure the write protection is turned off on your SD card to be able to successfully format your SD card.
- It is also possible that there are bad sectors on your SD card that are not letting the SD card format. If the scenario is applicable, repartitioning the SD card should help you fix the problem.
SD Card won’t format on Windows computer
Here are the methods that you can try when SD card won’t format:
- Remove Write Protection on SD Card.
- Format SD Card using Command Prompt.
- Format SD Card with Disk Management.
- Repartition your SD Card with DiskPart.
- Use a third-party SD card formatting tool.
1] Remove Write Protection on SD Card
The first thing you should do is try removing write protection on your SD card to fix the problem. It is most likely that the problem is caused if write protection is enabled on your SD card that prevents any modification on the SD card. So, if the scenario is applicable, removing write protection on the SD card will resolve the issue.
If you are using a card reader, remove the card and then check there is a Lock written on the side. If yes, then make sure it is not enabled. In case there is no lock switch on the card, you can use Windows built-in DiskPart utility to disable write protection on your SD card. Here is how to do that:
Firstly, open the Run dialog box using Windows + R hotkey.
Now, type diskpart in the Open field and then press Enter. This will open up the Diskpart in Command Prompt.
Next, type the following command to display the list of active disks:
After that, enter the below command where X is the disk number:
select disk X
Then, write the below command to remove write protection:
attributes disk clear read-only
Finally, press the Enter button and when the process is complete, close the Command Prompt.
See if you are now able to format your SD card or not. If not, you can try the next potential fix to resolve the problem.
Read: Windows was unable to repair the drive – USB, SD Card or Hard Disk.
2] Format SD Card using Command Prompt
If you are unable to format an SD card conventionally, you can try formatting it using Command Prompt. Here are the steps to do that:
Firstly, open the Command Prompt as an administrator.
Now, enter the below commands in CMD one by one:
diskpart list disk
Next, select your SD’s disk number using the below command:
select disk X
In the above command, X is the SD’s disk number.
After that, enter the below command:
format fs=ntfs quick
This should format your SD card.
In case you are still unable to format your SD card, move on to the next potential fix to resolve the issue.
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3] Format SD Card with Disk Management
Disk Management is Windows inbuilt disk and partition management utility. You can also use it to format your SD card as well. Here are the steps to format SD card using Disk Management on Windows PC:
- First, open the Disk Management tool from the taskbar search option.
- Now, select the partition on the SD card which you need to format.
- Next, right-click the partition and tap on the Format option.
- After that, manually enter the volume label, file system, and allocation unit size and press the OK button.
- Finally, confirm the formatting process by clicking on the OK button.
4] Repartition your SD Card with DiskPart
If there are bad sectors on your SD card, you are likely to face the problem of being unable to format the SD card. In case this scenario is applicable, you should be able to fix the problem by repartitioning your disk. To do that, you can use Windows command-line utility DiskPart. It will clean the SD card and generate fresh partitions on it.
Here is how you can repartition the SD card using DiskPart:
Firstly, launch the Command Prompt with administrator privilege as we did in method (2).
Now, enter the below commands in the given order:
diskpart list disk select disk X
In the 3rd command, X is the SD card’s disk number that you need to format.
Next, type the below commands and press the Enter button:
clean create partition primary
After that, to choose the partition you just created, enter the below command:
select partition 1
Then, to make the partition active, type and enter the following command:
You can now format the SD card by entering the below command:
format fs=ntfs label=SDCard quick
Now, you can assign the partition a letter to make it appear in File explorer using the below command:
Finally, exit Command Prompt and see if the drive is active in File Explorer.
Read: Fix Please insert the last disk of the multi-volume set error.
5] Use a third-party SD card formatting tool
If nothing works, you can try a third-party SD card formatting tool to format your SD card. It might enable you to format your SD card without any issue. You can try this free software called SD Memory Card Formatter. Just download and install this software and launch it on your PC. After that, format our SD card. Hopefully, this will enable you to successfully format your SD card without any problem.
How do I fix my SD card not detected in Windows 11?
If the SD card is not detected or recognized on your Windows 11/10 computer, then use a different USB port. You should also check your SD card for write protection and turn it off. If that doesn’t work, then use the CHKDSK system tool, format the SD card (if possible), and test your SD card with a new card reader or on a different computer.