Old 02-10-2006   #1
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Why Won't My SD card work

Ok i have tried everything i know how to do.
I have a 4gb Soho sd card. The card works fine until i put about 500 meg on it. Then it will copy data but when i pull it out and put it back in the data seems to be corrupted. The light on my reader blinks on and off when i try to access it. I have formatted it in every format i can find but nothing changes it. Ihave defragmented, checked for file errors and bad sectors, and nothing came up. But the strangest thing is when the card reaches about 500mb it will not let me create a new directory.

Any help would be nice.
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Old 02-10-2006   #2
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

GamezR2EZ, welcome to CDFreaks!

Is your SD card formatted using the FAT or FAT32 filesystem? Have you tried both?

The FAT filesystem has a limit on how many files and folders there can be in the root folder (the default is 512), and when you reach that limit you will not be able to add anything else to the root folder. You should still be able to add files and folders to a sub-folder, however.

If you hadn't performed the Error-checking with Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors already, I would have suggested that as the first thing to try.
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Old 02-10-2006   #3
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

My problem is that i could have one folder and when the files add up to 500mb i cant create anymore. And i have tried both of those formats.
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Old 02-10-2006   #4
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Quote:
Originally Posted by GamezR2EZ
My problem is that i could have one folder and when the files add up to 500mb i cant create anymore. And i have tried both of those formats.
Are you sure that the capacity of your drive hasn't shrunk dramatically after the Error-checking with Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors? That procedure will mark damaged sectors on the SD flash drive as unavailable and it's possible that this has happened. Have you checked the amount of free space on your SD drive?
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Old 02-10-2006   #5
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Quote:
Originally Posted by DrageMester
...The FAT filesystem has a limit on how many files and folders there can be in the root folder (the default is 512), and when you reach that limit you will not be able to add anything else to the root folder. You should still be able to add files and folders to a sub-folder, however.
Not quite sure what you had in mind DrageMester. Maybe you can explain to us because this sounds interesting.
The only FAT file allocation table I know about is M$, like explained here

@GamezR2EZ, try your SD card in another card reader.
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Old 02-10-2006   #6
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Quote:
Originally Posted by pinto2
Not quite sure what you had in mind DrageMester. Maybe you can explain to us because this sounds interesting.
The root directory (folder) on a FAT12/FAT16 (a.k.a. FAT) filesystem has a fixed size defined when the filesystem is created. The default fixed size is 512 entries, which would allow for 510 files/folders (plus the "." and ".." entries) unless long filename support is used, in which case the usable limit is even lower.

Directories (folders) created under the root directory don't have this limitation.

See e.g. this support article at Microsoft.

The FAT32 filesystem removed that limit.
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Old 03-10-2006   #7
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Quote:
Originally Posted by GamezR2EZ
Ok i have tried everything i know how to do.
I have a 4gb Soho sd card. The card works fine until i put about 500 meg on it. Then it will copy data but when i pull it out and put it back in the data seems to be corrupted. The light on my reader blinks on and off when i try to access it. I have formatted it in every format i can find but nothing changes it. Ihave defragmented, checked for file errors and bad sectors, and nothing came up. But the strangest thing is when the card reaches about 500mb it will not let me create a new directory.

Any help would be nice.
Have you tried formatting in a camera? Some of the readers miscalculate the size of the media as they follow older specs.
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Old 03-10-2006   #8
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

This post might not be at all related to topic.

@DrageMester.
Thaks for the in-depth FAT theory explanation.

DeepTrance's post above gave me the idea to check out this in a more practical way.
Loaded an old 64MB SC card into our oldest digital camera at home. Formated card in camera. Created 3 main folders, one containing 2 subfolders on this card with drive letter G. Transfered (via USB) files from compu to camera, in total almost 4000 small (1k) ones (originally from a splited Nero program). Then I backed up this card content back to my HD.
Files checked and verified with MD5. No problem what so ever...
Note, pic from a swedish Win XP. Filenames deleted except for one.
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Old 03-10-2006   #9
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

@GamezR2EZ, there is another possibility of reaching a limitation of your SD flash drive without using all ht e space, and that is if you put ´many thousand small files on the drive. A FAT16 filesystem on a 4 GB SD card would use 64kB clusters, so even the smallest file would still use 64k. If you put around 60,000 tiny files on your drive it would be full even though the sum total size of those files might me much less than 4 GB.

This is probably not the explanation for what you're experiencing, but I thought I'd mention it because you didn't say much about the number and size of files you're trying to put on the card.

With a FAT32 filesystem you can have a much smaller cluster size and you won't waste as much space for tiny files.

@pinto2, I'm not sure what you intend to show with your experiment. If it's something that you want feedback on you will have to explain further.
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Old 05-10-2006   #10
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

I have wanted to format it in a camera however i have a mini sd camera, and no other sd device that can format.
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Old 05-10-2006   #11
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

I was putting songs on my sd card to fill up some space, each album to their own directory. Here is were it gets strange, after about 5 albums (roughly 500mb) i tried putting one more album on it. The songs played perfectly however when the card was removed and reinserted the songs seemed to be corrupted in that last folder. When i went to delete the songs it seemed to take forever with no progress then they deleted within 5 seconds.

I tried this test several more times with different files and the results were the same. Its almost as if the file deleted when the card was removed.
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Old 06-10-2006   #12
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

It still looks like capacity miscalculation to me. When you right click properties on your card what does it say? Does it still say 4 GB? When addresses are calculated beyond a certain value, I believe you are getting the wrong block address.
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Old 09-10-2006   #13
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Well thanks for the help. I just dont see us getting anywhere, but i did learn somethings so great, right.
Thanks
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Old 11-10-2006   #14
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Re: Why Won't My SD card work

Here's the real explaination (from me)...

SD Cards are only SD Cards up till the 2GB barrier - the SD Specifications started of specifiying up to 1GB - and then there was a little modification for 2GB. 4GB cards are currently out of standard - unless they are SDHC cards - not SD Cards. The 4GB cards MUST use FAT32 - as FAT filesystem cannot cater for drives >2GB. The 4GB cards also have MASS compatibility ISSUES and everyone has been warned to stay away from them, especially when using devices that are also SDHC compliant, as it can confuse them.

Many card readers misrecognise the size of the cards and have problems, however, I believe you have a dud card more than anything else. A while back, a crop of fake Sandisk SD Cards was released onto the market as 1Gb cards - everyone had issues. Some cards wrote up to 540MB and stopped, others to 882MB ... etc.

Those cards were fake, and had issues which affected the internal memory and controller. They were probably not very compatible either.

My advice:
- Don't ever deal with 4GB SD Cards, they are out of standards and can cause you problems. They won't be formatted in cameras/devices not supporting FAT32. SDHC cards are the only "SD" cards 4GB or greater that I would buy, HOWEVER THEY ARE NOT COMPATIBLE WITH SD DEVICES, only with SDHC!
- Try a different card reader/writer.
- Get a refund.

Best wishes,
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