How To: Format Your SD Card Back to the Original Size (WINDOWS)

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After writing any image with an OS for your raspberry pi, you may have notice that no matter the size of your SD card, windows can only recognize one partition with about 60 mb. If you try to format it in the Computer menu (righ-click on it and press format), it will only free the space in that partition, to have access to the full space you have two options (only one is needed):
- SIMPLE PROCESS: step 1 - SD Formatter
- ADVANCED PROCESS: step 2 - DiskPart

Step 1: SIMPLE PROCESS: SD Formatter

1 - Download and install this software (from the SD card Organization) :
https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/eula_windows/SDFormatterv4.zip

2 - Open the program, and select the right drive (in my case is G:), after that just click "FORMAT"

3 - You have just formatted your SD card! CONGRATULATIONS

Step 2: ADVANCED PROCESS: DiskPart

1 - Go to the windows start button, write diskpart and press "enter"

2 - Wait a few seconds and write on this order:
- "list disk" - shows you the disks that are currently connected to the computer;
- "select disk X" - substitute x with the number of the disk
- "clean" - deletes all the data in the SD (you may have to remove and reinsert the card after this step)
- "create partition primary" - creates a partition in the sd
- "format quick" - makes a quick format

3 - You have just formatted your SD card! CONGRATULATIONS

6 People Made This Project!

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110 Discussions

thanks for creating this! i have a stack of cheap sd cards that we're going to try to breathe a bit more life into them by trying this. otherwise, we might go toward making some cool accents for crafting projects.

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ΧωρίςΌ

7 weeks ago

Did not work. Both SD formatter AND diskpart fail to execute because of an error and "could not find the sector requested". This is not an instructable! This is what worked for you which definitely does not solve the problem of a corrupted MBR on the SD card.

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AndrewG277

8 weeks ago

Thank you. This worked perfectly with diskpart.

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NikosC7

2 months ago

Perfect! Thank u so much!

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Sangee_th

5 months ago

Thanks for the thread.. worked perfectly

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МишаР2

8 months ago

Thank you!

My dash camera had made my 32Gb card into a 100Mb )

Easy fix, thank you for the guide.

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GeoffreyL16

8 months ago on Step 1

I wish I could say this worked but I can't because my system STILL can't see the SD card. I'm using Windows 10 and it seems from the literally thousands of users of that OS, that NOBODY can see a 32 GB ScanDisk card. I wasted an hour on a chat with one of their reps and he didn't have a clue either. Not sure what my next steps are. Just an FYI, I need the large storage because I'm using the card with a Raspberry P1 3 in tandem with a 3D printer set up.

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cyberhelpGeoffreyL16

Reply 8 months ago

struggled for a couple of hrs with this as well. Tried LLF, Diskpart, SD formatter, HD Recovery tools, Rufus, HP USB formatter... finally decided to try my SD to USB adapter. Used Rufus to format as Fat32/4096 and sure enough, Windows 10 recognized it as 32GB.

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sumanm2

9 months ago

in my case disnt work why i tries diskpart too. i have 16 gb samsung sd card its shows 121 mb and couldnt format to excess it any solution..

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XroK

10 months ago

Thank you so much! You saved my 15 GB MicroSD Card!

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GeorgO1

11 months ago

Salamat po!!!

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MohammedTahirP

1 year ago

Thanks A Lot magamig you saved my 64gigs and Solved my error on win7

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safwatammar

1 year ago

wonderful, did it successfully, thanks a lot

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john.chow.773776

1 year ago

followed the instructions everything went along well

but my 64 gig sd card still says 27 gig

ideas thank you

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VincentS103

1 year ago

Godsend!! Saved my 64GB SD card. More strength to you mate!! Took just a few minutes to get out of misery!!! Thank you!!!

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ToniRose

1 year ago

Why don't I remember to come to instructables whenever I need to do something? Always the best information with the simplest instructions. I could have saved two hours. Thanks!

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GurinderS6

1 year ago

It'd not working