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SD Card Corrupted


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#1 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 03 September 2012 - 05:54 AM

Hi, My SanDisk SDHC card suddenly says that it's needs to be formatted when I connected it to the pc or in the camera. I try to format it, but it says 'The format could not be completed' I have several photos on there that I haven't backed up!
If I look in Computer Management the file type says RAW (I know the original file type was FAT32)
Any ideas on how I can restore my photos?

Thanks

#2 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 04 September 2012 - 03:41 PM

If it's only a few photographs you're after getting back, have a look at "MiniTool Power Data Recovery". The free version has the limitation of only enabling the recovery of 1gb of data, but that should be OK for you.

http://www.softpedia...e-Edition.shtml

Once installed, use the "Damaged Partition Recovery" option which will scan "RAW" data for images ...



If it's a large card the scan may take some time, but the results window displays thumbnails of any images it finds.

See how you get on with that, which I think is better than trying to fix the card at this stage.

#3 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 07:26 AM

Hi, Thanks for the reply. I have downloaded and tried the Damaged Partition Recovery but it doesn't show the sd card on the list of devices?

Just to add...I have also tried formatting the card in the camera (that doesn't work)
I have tried another card in the laptop and that works fine. The program that you suggested picks that one up but not the corrupted one.
I am using Windows Vista

#4 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 05 September 2012 - 05:46 PM

I've another suggestion, but can I ask you the size of the card, and has it worked OK with Vista before this problem occurred? I'm thinking of possible Vista SDHC card size limitations.

Have a try with SD Formatter.

SD Formatter for Windows 3.1: (Freeware)

I've just had a look at it on my XP machine, and it does have a "Quick Format" option which is the one you need to try as it will initialize the file system but won't overwrite your data. If this works OK, you should then be able to scan that card OK.

The Windows download is on the left of that page, and there's a PDF guide download further down the page.

These are the default options and I would suggest leaving them as they are ...



Fingers crossed for you.

#5 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 02:07 AM

It's a 4gb card, and has always worked fine with Vista before

Tried the SD Card Formatter but it just keeps saying 'The Memory Card is write protected. Please release the write protect switch' ...the 'lock' on it is deffo not on?

#6 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 06 September 2012 - 04:42 PM

The 4gb size is fine, which is the upper limit that XP card readers can handle. I think Vista is similar but not 100% on that.

Shame about the SD Formatter, which strangely pops up a similar error discussed on here quite recently, and that is an SD card being flagged by Windows as write protected when it isn't. But I'm digressing.

Rather than try to repair what is pretty obviously a screwed up boot sector/partition table, have a try with another free recovery program, "PhotoRec".

PhotoRec:

PhotoRec ignores the file system and tries to dig out the underlying data. I've read that so many times I don't need to copy and paste it from the web page any more.

If you don't know "PhotoRec" (or it's sister program "TestDisk"), don't be put off by it's simplicity, or the fact that it looks like a command line utility. It does have a structured dialogue to follow, and there's also a very good guide ...

PhotoRec Step By Step:

If you can't get to grips with it, I'll try to help if I can, just make sure the card is plugged in before you run it.

How are you actually connecting the card? Card Reader, In your Camera via USB, or USB Card Adapter? And just reading your first post again ...

Hi, My SanDisk SDHC card suddenly says that it's needs to be formatted when I connected it to the pc or in the camera. I try to format it, but it says 'The format could not be completed' I have several photos on there that I haven't backed up!


You don't actually say whether or not you've tried to format it using the camera's format feature. My camera can do a "Low Level" or a "Non Low Level" format, the former being a full wipe of everything and the latter being a "Quick" format. I assume most camera's have similar features.

#7 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:30 AM

I'm connecting the card with the card reader that's built into the pc tower (never had any problems using it this way before) have also tried connecting it in the camera via USB

I have tried formatting it using the camera, it starts formatting then just goes back to the message saying that it needs to be formatted.

I have tried PhotoRec..

Selected the correct drive, chose Proceed

It then comes up with the partition P Unknown, selected 'Search' then 'Other' for the file type then pressed c to save the files

It then searches and finds 0 files to recover

Attached Files



#8 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 09:11 AM

We're not having much success are we?

There are only two ways basically to get those files off your card, and that is to use programs which can scan for and recover "Raw" data successfully, or to do a "Quick Format" on the card and then use normal recovery programs like Recuva.

PhotoRec failing to find files is disappointing, as is the inability of that card to accept being formatted. I'm confident that we'll fix the card itself when the time comes, but the fix method will wipe all data off the card which we don't want at present.

Firstly, if you haven't already, go back to "Power Data Recovery" and try each of it's options besides the "Raw Recovery" one. That was the obvious one to try first, but no harm in trying the others.

Post back how you get on with that, and if you have no joy we'll have a go at fixing the card, unless any of the other guys on here can suggest something I may have overlooked in way of recovering your files. Trying to fix your card would not involve the "fix" I mention above, but would simply be using free software to check the file system, or using the same free software to try and fix the MBR. (Master Boot Record).

#9 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 11:26 AM

I have tried the other options on 'MiniTool Power Data Recovery' and still nothing! Not looking good!

#10 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 09 September 2012 - 05:03 PM

I don't know of any other free software which will scan raw data better than PhotoRec does, and it's a puzzle why the card won't format even when using SDFormatter.

We'll have to go in a different direction now, and that is to try and "fix" the card by using one of quite a few options available, but firstly can I ask how important are the photographs you're trying to recover?

If they are irreplaceable, I would suggest making an Image of your camera card with another freeware program, USB Image Tool.

USB Image Tool 1.58: (Download link is on the right)

The only doubt here is will this tool pick up your card? This is what it looks like, quite simple really ...



The reason I suggest this is because trying to fix the drive involves writing to it, and these things can not be guaranteed to work. There's no magic bullet I'm afraid with this stuff.

An Image can be restored to the card if the first attempt at fixing it fails, and then a different method can be tried.

#11 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 12 September 2012 - 11:12 AM

The photos are quite important, thankfully I backed quite a lot of them up but the most recent ones I hadn't got round to doing!

I have tried the USB Image Tool and it is not detecting the card, tried another sd card and it picked that one up fine!

Don't think I'm going to be getting them back am I :(

#12 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 12 September 2012 - 04:02 PM

Don't despair yet, I've a couple of options for you.

We're assuming here that you've screwed up the bootsector in some way, which is the usual cause of the "needs formatting" and "raw" messages, but it isn't outside the bounds of possibility that it could be something else.

All the same, we'll stick with the first assumption, and move on from trying to scan for files and check out the card.

Does windows pick up the card OK, and does it still carry a drive letter? If it does we'll see if you can do a "chkdsk" (check disk) on the card.

Right click the card in "My Computer" and select "Properties\Tools tab\Check now". You'll have this ...



For now, just check the "fix file system errors" box and run it. Chkdsk doesn't I believe do anything with the bootsectors of a drive, but we'll see if it picks up any other errors in the file system.

And if windows doesn't pick up the card and/or run the file system check, we''ll go to the next option.

#13 OFFLINE Super Fast

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Posted 12 September 2012 - 05:55 PM

Earlier, I had thought this sounded wrong, but since I used a USB adapter, I may not have had the limitation that is imposed via XP card reader itself.

#14 ONLINE hazelnut

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Posted 13 September 2012 - 12:10 AM

Dennis, can you provide more info on this?

While I do know that there is a 4GB file size limit for .zip files before the data corrupts, I was not aware that SD can only have 4GB space on XP.
I know that Win 98/ME DID have a 4 GB file size limitation, as well as limitations in RAM & HDD size.

I was not aware this was a problem in XP for SD cards.

Do you have a link on that? I'd be interested in reading it!

Thanks!


Please start a new thread regarding your question.

You are posting in someone else's thread who is in the middle of receiving help.
CCLEANER, RECUVA, DEFRAGGLER AND SPECCY DOCUMENTATION CAN BE FOUND HERE

http://www.piriform.com/docs

#15 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 13 September 2012 - 03:43 AM

Don't despair yet, I've a couple of options for you.

We're assuming here that you've screwed up the bootsector in some way, which is the usual cause of the "needs formatting" and "raw" messages, but it isn't outside the bounds of possibility that it could be something else.

All the same, we'll stick with the first assumption, and move on from trying to scan for files and check out the card.

Does windows pick up the card OK, and does it still carry a drive letter? If it does we'll see if you can do a "chkdsk" (check disk) on the card.

Right click the card in "My Computer" and select "Properties\Tools tab\Check now". You'll have this ...



For now, just check the "fix file system errors" box and run it. Chkdsk doesn't I believe do anything with the bootsectors of a drive, but we'll see if it picks up any other errors in the file system.

And if windows doesn't pick up the card and/or run the file system check, we''ll go to the next option.


Yes, Windows does detect the card...tried what you have suggested but when I click on 'Check Now' I get the message 'The disk check could not be performed because the disk is not formatted. Would you like to format the disk' Obviously I have tried formatting from this message but still no joy!

#16 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 13 September 2012 - 11:51 AM

OK, onward and upward. More options.

When you downloaded PhotoRec, the download would have included it's partner in crime "TestDisk". Fire up TestDisk with your card in the slot. We'll use TestDisk for the first option as it won't modify the card.

Pick the "no log" option (don't need one), and see if your card is in the "Select a media" list.

If so scroll to it (using arrow keys) and select "Proceed".

In the "Select Partition Table" list select "Intel".

On the next page, select "Advanced".

The next page will show only your card, and it should display the "file system" type as shown here ...



If it's FAT32 there will be a backup of the bootsector residing a few sectors away from the primary bootsector, and TestDisk will compare them.

Select "Boot" from the bottom menu and "Enter", and you will see something like this ...



This is an uncorrupted card and both bootsector and back up are good. Let me know what yours says.

If the file system is FAT, then there won't be a back up bootsector.

Let me know and we'll take it from there.
:)

#17 OFFLINE help890

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 03:38 AM

I've tried the TestDisk program

I can select the sd card as shown then when select Advanced it says No Partition Available

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#18 OFFLINE Super Fast

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 12:35 PM

Sorry, Hazel...

#19 OFFLINE Super Fast

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 12:47 PM

Just watching this thread, because I am interested in what actually does work to fix it.

#20 OFFLINE DennisD

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Posted 14 September 2012 - 06:20 PM

Firstly, I have to say I didn't spot the displayed size of that card in the screenshot in post#7, and it was there to see.

And although I agree with hazel that your own thread on XP's card handling capacity would have been a good idea SF, that's a good spot on the wrongly displayed storage size.

And just to put the capacity thing to bed, the XP size limitation is due solely to its card reading software. Stick an 8GB SDHC card in a USB adapter and it works fine.

And the Microsoft Hotfix for this card reader problem has never worked. If you have SP3 and try the hotfix, windows will give you the message that the hotfix is included in SP3 and will refuse to install it.

Secondly, and I hate to say this but you're gonna have to try and keep up Super, "SD Formatter for Windows 3.1" was suggested and tried earlier in the topic, post #4. :)

As it happens, I went through this wrong capacity display thing with two flash drives of my own, and the cause turned out to be that the missing capacity was being picked up by windows as "unallocated space". The first card I binned as it was early in my education, but the second one I fixed with partitioning software. Delete the remaining recognized partition to create a full drive of unallocated space, and then simply create a new partition.

But windows being windows, I can only say this has worked each time I've tried it.

------------------------------

Back to you help890, and I outlined the above as I think it useful info for yourself and maybe others. The 30mb may contain your photo's, but so far nothing has gotten to grips with that card at all.

Possibly the only suggestion I have left pretty much ties in with the above anyway. Can you download and install "MiniTool Partition Wizard Home Edition" which is the free version ...

MiniTool Partition Wizard Home Edition 7.6:

Take care while you are installing it to avoid the extras. Watch for this during the install ...



The default has the "Express" box checked, so set it as shown in the screenshot and you're good.

Have your card in the slot before you launch it, and then take a screenshot if you would of how it's displayed. I'll wait to see that.