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Desperate! photo SD card says "not Formatted" is all lost!?

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Dec 31st, 2010, 05:37 AM
  #1
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Desperate! photo SD card says "not Formatted" is all lost!?

We just returned from our trip last night after a great 15 days in Europe with our kids. this morning, I put our photo card in a card reader, hooked it up to my macbook - and nothing happened. I tried the card reader in my other, windows, computer - same thing - showed hardware attached but no content.

So I put card back in camera to hook up the entire camera to computer and the camera said "card not formatted - format card?" i said no - and I'm stuck!!!
I've researched online, but not sure what to do!

Please help - It would be horrible to lose all of the photos from this wonderfule trip!
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Dec 31st, 2010, 06:19 AM
  #2
J62
 
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This doesn't sound good at all. It's not uncommon that a computer cannot read an SD card - I have the same problem with one of my cameras. For that camera I have to connect a USB cable directly into the camera to read the files. The fact that you can't see the pictures when you put the card back into the camera is the troublesome part. Maybe I didn't get that part - did you try to view the pictures on the camera? Sounds like the camera gave you an error before you got to that point.

I'm not a data recovery expert - perhaps Andrew or another computer expert will chime in here. A couple of things you can try.

- Can you connect the camera to your computer via USB cable? - sounds like you already tried that.
- Do you have a different computer you can try to read the card with?
- Do you have a different card you can play around with to test how the camera, card reader, and/or computer work under normal circumstances?

Whatever you do, don't try to take another picture on the same card - you may inadvertently reformat the card.
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Dec 31st, 2010, 06:29 AM
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Can you see the photos in camera? Are you sure it actually recorded the photos?
Do you have another car you could try in the camera to check the camera is working correctly?

There are various recovery programs available, some free some you pay for. Sandisk cards often come with a free recovery program for instance. Have a google and see what you can find.
It might be worth trying a recovery program.
Otherwise get it to a computer expert and ask for help. Whatever you do do not format the card.
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Dec 31st, 2010, 09:31 AM
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In some circumstances you can unlock your card, but I need to know which camera (brand and model) you have to tell you if it is possible.
I dont think you can use another card at present either.
This occurs normally because you have disconnected the card from the PC without closing it down properly.
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 10:52 AM
  #6
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O.K. - we were able to review the photos while on our trip, so I know that they were recorded to the card. We have a Nikon coolpix S51 and the card is a SD HC 16 GB. RIB... I think you are exactly right. When we got home, and I was tired, I hooked up the card reader to my Macbook. I THINK (because I can't entirely remember) that I probably did not give it enough time to download before I removed it - I tend to get impatient, to my own detriment - so what now?
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 11:33 AM
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You have to trust me on this...reformat your card.
The recover your images by using a specialist programme. The one that comes up often on blogs, because I expect they have been spamming blogs is stellar.
But I have found this one which may do the same job.
http://www.apple.com/downloads/macos...italmedia.html
Here are some instructions for Nikon Cool pix, not the same model but they are all going to be the same.
http://www.replacelaptop.com/data-re...00pj-3804.html
and hers is another:
http://www.pk520.com/nikon-software-suite/
Note the bit about the author. Different names but the same experience. That is what I meant about Spamming blogs.
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 11:39 AM
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Any way you could create a copy of the card first?

Maybe I am talking out of turn here and I am very happy to be corrected, but doesn't formatting the card wipe it?
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 01:43 PM
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The same thing happened to me several years ago. I was afraid to mess around with recovery software since I didn't know what I was doing. I ended up taking the card to a well-respected photo store and they were able to restore my pictures. It was worth it to me. You should be able to retrieve the pictures through recovery software or with professional help. Good luck!
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 02:21 PM
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"Maybe I am talking out of turn here and I am very happy to be corrected, but doesn't formatting the card wipe it?"

Yes it does but the recovery software can re-create the images from the "ghosts" left on the SD card (in theory). Personally I'd let someone who's had success at this before attempt it (i.e. a shop).
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Jan 3rd, 2011, 03:43 PM
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I'd be looking for a good photo store to help me.
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Jan 7th, 2011, 04:00 AM
  #12
 
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If you took any photos for your own enjoyment and then deleted them because you didn't want anyone else to see be warned, they will be the first ones to pop up if someone else recovers them!
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Jan 7th, 2011, 06:43 AM
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palmettoprincess,
Whatever are you suggesting !!!! lol

;-)

Muck

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Jan 7th, 2011, 10:48 AM
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I've not read all the responses above, so apologies if this is repetition.

Does you card have a little switch on the side? Often when you remove your card from the camera and insert in in another machine this tiny switch gets flicked over and then the card becomes unreadable.

Mine used to do this, but I could always retrieve the photos, until the switch broke off and I had to get another card.

Simple, but could be worth a try.
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Apr 8th, 2011, 05:48 AM
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Call a local camera store if there is such a thing near you. Our little local store recovered photos off a SD card that we thought were lost forever. They told us that in the majority of cases they can recover the photos. I think it cost $15.00. Could be the Geek Squad at Best Buy could do it, but since I deal with the local store I asked them and they got it done in just a couple of hours.
Also, some card readers, even computers, don't seem able to handle the larger cards. No idea how that works.
Don't give up.
I sure wish you the best.
I had a scare in Paris, had my DSLR and my P&S Nikon. The P&S had a 8 GB, Class 6 memory card (wanted to use the P&S for video). About 4 days into the trip I took a few photos around the Louvre and when I went to review them got a message "this card can not be used." Talk about upset! Anyway, I turned off the camera, removed the card, reinserted the card, and turned on the camera. No further problems. But it is such a sick feeling, all those photos!
Please let us know.
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Apr 8th, 2011, 08:44 AM
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Another reason to keep local, bricks-and-mortar camera stores in business. (They're suffering greatly from online sellers.)
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Apr 8th, 2011, 09:46 AM
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A young man in the Geek Squad at my local Best Buy was able to save my photos for me. It took him about a half an hour. Good luck.
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Apr 10th, 2011, 03:37 PM
  #18
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Thanks for the good wishes - I appreciate it. I did take the disk to a specialty camera shop. After working on it for quite some time, they said "no luck" and gave me a flyer for a data recovery place in Chicago. I plan to send the disk there this week.

Fortunately, I took just a few pictures with a borrowed camera that turned out just fine. I took one for every 25 my husband took. I hope we can recover the photos - Though we all laugh that it is the vacation that they took without Mommy - no photos of me anywhere!
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Jul 1st, 2011, 04:00 AM
  #19
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?????
Jujubean ..... been several months ...... were you ever able to recover the photos thru Chicago recovery data place?
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Apr 12th, 2013, 04:50 AM
  #20
 
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I took my SD card to our local photography shop (not the big box places) and they were able to recover all the photos on the card. Cost was about $20.00. Well worth it. Just don't do anything to it til you have them give it a try.
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