How to format an unformatted CD-R

How to Recover Photos from SD Card Without Formatting [MiniTool]

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Linkedin


“This card is not formatted. Please format it. ”Have you seen this kind of error message on your camera? Do you format them? Or not? If you don't want to format it, how do you access the photos stored on the card? This post will teach you how to recover photos from SD card without formatting effectively, quickly and safely.

Lately I have asked myself the following question a lot: “How can I Recover photos from SD card without formatting?“

I have just returned from my trip last month after an excellent 15 days in China. A few days ago, I found that the connected camera s SD card is inaccessible when trying to access the photos taken in China. And a message would pop out saying, “This card is not formatted. Please format it. "

However, I don't dare to format the memory card because I don't want to lose any data on it. In such cases, what can I do to effectively recover lost photos? Please help! It would be terrible to lose all of the photos for this wonderful trip!

Have you ever encountered the same mistake? Do you want to know how to recover photos from SD card without formatting? Would you like to know how to fix “This card is not formatted” error without losing original data?

In today's post, I'm going to show you how to effectively and quickly recover data from a memory card when it requires formatting. And how to fix the “The card is not formatted” error with ease.

Part 1: this card is not formatted and you need to format it

When trying to access your SD card in the camera, you might get the following messages.

This card is not formatted. Please format it.

Or, when you try to access the card in Windows, you may see an error message asking you to format the disk.

You must format the disk before you can use it. Do you want to format it?

Another error that appears when accessing the memory card in Windows is ...

There is no recognized file system on the data carrier. Make sure that any required file system drivers are loaded and that the disk is not damaged.

When you try to run chkdsk to fix the problem, it throws an error ...

The type of the file system is RAW.

CHKDSK is not available for RAW drives.

In general, if you're getting the unformatted error, you should THE SD CARDDO NOT FORMAT IMMEDIATELYbecause formatting can overwrite the original data stored on this drive. It is recommended to recover photos from memory card before formatting, which always prompts to format. But how do you recover photos from SD card without formatting? Can we easily recover photos from RAW SD card? Also, I am wondering if I can recover photos on the SD card without damaging the original data.

In fact, you don't have to worry about recovering the photos from the unformatted memory card because MiniTool Photo Recovery, developed by famous software development company based in Canada, can help you recover lost photos easily, effectively and quickly. This easy-to-use photo recovery software specializes in recovering deleted photos, pictures and illustrations without harming the original data because of its high security and excellent performance.

It can recover lost / deleted photos from various digital cameras and storage devices including hard drive, SD card, USB flash drive, etc. In addition, this professional photo recovery software supports Windows 10/8/7 along with Windows Server 2003/2008/2012 etc.

"Recover lost / deleted photos from memory card, phone, camera, etc. for free" is recommended here.

Here you can watch the following video to know more details about this professional photo recovery software for Windows.

Part 2: Recover Photos from SD Card Without Formatting

Before recovering lost photos, you should download MiniTool Photo Recovery Unregistered and install it on the computer according to the instruction.

Step 1: Start Photo Recovery.

  • Connect your memory card to the computer.
  • Launch MiniTool Photo Recovery to get the main interface as below.
  • click on begin, to continue.

See! MiniTool Photo Recovery, a read-only, reliable, simple and excellent photo recovery software, is capable of recovering photos from digital cameras, memory cards, computer hard drives, USB hard drives and other removable media. More importantly, this professional photo recovery software is capable of recovering photos from digital camera directly.

Step 2: Scan the unformatted SD card.

  • Select the SD card that Windows is requesting for formatting.
  • Click the Scan button in the lower right corner to begin scanning the card.
Note: When you have scanned the SD card, you can select the first option from the device list to load the scan results directly. For example, here you can select “Previous Recovery Result, Result for Partition: '(L: other)” and then click the “Load” button as shown below.

Step 3: save the photos you need.

  • Preview the photos.
  • Select all the photos you need that you want to recover.
  • Click the button Save.
  • click on Browseto find a safe place to save selected photos.
Warning: It is recommended to save the selected files on a different drive! Otherwise the lost / deleted data could be overwritten.
Tip: If MiniTool Photo Recovery finds and lists many files in this window, you can use the Filter function to quickly find the photos you want through by filename / extension. Since you only want to restore images, you can select "* .jpg, *. Gif, *. Png, *. Psd, *. Tif" from the drop-down list of by filename / extension for accuracy.

See! By using MiniTool Photo Recovery, we can quickly and easily recover photos from SD card without formatting, without damaging the original data.

According to a survey, some users may have received the following message: “You have reached the file saving limit for the selected files” while saving files, as shown below.

This is because the unregistered version only allows you to save 200MB of recovered files. To keep the data indefinitely, you can update your copy of MiniTool Photo Recovery.

If you are a Mac user, you can use MiniTool Photo Recovery for Mac Free to recover your photos from SD card that Windows is asking for formatting.

1. Connect the SD card to the Mac, then launch MiniTool Photo Recovery for Mac and click begin.

2. Scan the SD card on which the photo loss occurs.

3. Save the files you need in a safe place.

Here you can see our previous post “See! I Can Recover Free Photos From Mac With Ease "read for more information about this professional Mac photo recovery software.

"Great! I used MiniTool Photo Recovery to quickly, safely, and effectively recover lost photos from SD card without formatting. It's worth it to you. ”Click to tweet

After completing the "Recover Photos from an SD Card Without Formatting" task, now you will see why the SD card is going to be unformatted and how to fix the "This card is not formatted" error.

Part 3: why is my SD card asking me to format it?

1) Virus infection or malware infection

If your SD card is infected by virus or malware, you may get the error message "You must format the SD card before you can use it."

2) File system is corrupt.

If the SD card has a corrupted file system that shows as RAW, Unknown or Unsupported, you need to format it before using it. And this can happen under many circumstances such as power failure, improper removal of SD card from card reader and so on.

3) incompatibility issues

If the portable digital device or operating system does not support the SD card, you will experience incompatibility issues. In such cases, "This card is not formatted" error is displayed when you force the SD card to access the data.

4) Improper removal of the SD card

Generally, if the SD card is disconnected from a computer without using the “Safely Remove Hardware” option, “This card is not formatted” error is displayed. Besides, you may also encounter the not formatted error if you remove the SD card from the camera while working.

Tip: Always use the “Safely Remove Hardware” icon and eject the device before removing it. Or you can right click on your SD card in the computer window and select Eject. Then Windows will tell you when it is safe to remove the device and remove any data corruption changes.

Part 4: how to fix "this card is not formatted" error

To fix the unformatted error, you can format it to FAT32. (Here I suspect you might be interested in this post: What's the difference between FAT32, exFAT, and NTFS?)

Note: Formatting the SD card will erase all data on it. Make sure that any pictures or other files currently stored on the card have been properly backed up to another location if you plan to save them.

The most common methods of formatting an SD card are either formatting it in Windows Explorer or formatting it under Disk Management. Take Disk Management as an example.

Right click on Computer (Note: In Windows 8/10 we could right click on "This PC"), then select Manage and click Disk Management.

Right-click the unformatted SD card and select Format….

Then you will receive the detailed instructions. Just do as I said.

According to a survey, some users were unable to format their unformatted SD card. And most of them got an “Windows could not complete the format” error message when formatting.

Sometimes users cannot format the unformatted SD card and receive an error message that the disk is “write protected”. The write-protect switch may be turned on before the SD card displays the error "This card is not formatted."

If the SD card says it is write-protected and cannot be formatted, you can check that you have set the write-protect switch to “Off”, and then check the SD memory card for virus scans. Finally, you can open the registry editor on the PC to reset the value.

If both methods fail to format your SD card successfully, you may try to format the SD card to FAT32 using MiniTool Partition Wizard.

Do you want to know the best method?

Now let's see the detailed steps.

  • Firstly, download and install MiniTool Partition Wizard. After that, launch it to get its main interface.
  • Second, select the unformatted SD card and click in the left action pane Format partition.
  • Third, enter the required partition label, file system, and cluster size, then click OK.

Finally click Taketo make any changes.

This post “Formatting SD Cards | How to Format SD Card Quickly ”is highly recommended here and you can find 4 solutions to format your SD card.

Click to tweet


Useful and important tips

  • Do not format the unformatted SD card before you get the data back.
  • Do not save the found data to the SD card to avoid any data recovery errors.
  • In Safe Mode, remove the SD card using the Eject or Safely Remove Hardware options.
  • Make sure your operating system is virus-free before connecting the SD card.
  • It is highly recommended that you make a backup of your important data to avoid data loss.

When it comes to backing up important data, you can try some professional, simple, yet free cloning software. MiniTool ShadowMaker, an all-inclusive data backup and disaster recovery solution for PC, can back up your Windows operating system, computer hard drive, even SD card, USB drive, and more. With a backup copy, you can restore lost data instantly and effectively.

Are you still experiencing SD card not formatted error? Now, after reading this post, you will know that as long as you do the following 2 things, you can solve this problem perfectly.

First, use MiniTool Photo Recovery to effectively and safely recover lost photos from SD card without formatting.

Second, format the SD card.

If you have any questions or suggestions about photo recovery from unformatted SD cards, you can email us at [email protected] or leave us comments in the comment zone.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Linkedin


PennyFollow us

Position: Columnist

She joined the MiniTool family in 2018. After that, she focuses on data recovery and disk management. Over the two years she has written many good posts and helped users get out of their data recovery and computer management problems.

In addition to knowledge of computer tricks, she is also interested in foreign languages, especially Japanese and Korean. She also likes animated films and feature films very much. "Good morning ... Oh, and if we don't see each other, good afternoon, good evening and good night!" Is her favorite movie quote.