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Can't Delete Files from SD Card? Try 2024 Best Solution

In this passage, you will find solutions to can't delete files from sd card problem. Discover helpful techniques and tips to resolve this issue effectively on Windows.

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Updated by Cici on Jan 16, 2024

Have trouble deleting files from your SD card or can't delete files from SD card? Don't worry. This guide is dedicated to helping you delete files from your SD card. EaseUS will lead you through a discussion on the solution and reasons for this error. You will learn different fixes to get the work done in no time. Let's discuss them one by one:

How to Fix Can't Delete Files from SD Card 

In the following sections, we'll introduce six effective solutions to help you resolve the unable to delete files from SD card issue and regain write access to your SD card files.

Method Efficiency Difficulty
Check and Unlock the Write-Protect Tab High - Problems caused by physical switches can be solved directly.
Use the Write-Protection Removal Tool High - Ability to quickly resolve write-protection issues.
Use CMD to Remove Read-Only Attributes Medium - This process may result in loss of data. ⭐⭐⭐⭐
Change Value Data in the Registry Medium - The registry is mainly used to find problems and make changes. ⭐⭐⭐
Check SD Card for Errors Medium - The program mainly checks the SD card for logical errors. ⭐⭐
Format the SD Card High - Formatting the SD card erases all its contents.

Let's explore each solution step-by-step to get your SD card to delete files on Windows 10/11:

Solution 1. Check and Unlock the Write-Protect Tab

You might haven't checked the Write-protect tab if you cannot delete files from an SD card on the computer. It is a small switch on the left-hand side of the SD card. Users sometimes have no idea about the function of this switch and may ignore it. This switch is responsible for activating the write-protected mode on the card. Follow these steps to unlock the write-protected tab:

Step 1: Take the SD card from the computer and check if the small sliding switch is in the "locked" position. 

Step 2: If the switch is down, the card is locked, prohibiting deletion or content modification. 

unlock the physical switch of your SD card

Step 3: Slide the switch upside to unlock it and turn off the read-only mode. Now, insert the card and see if the files are deletable. 

Pro Tip* If your card does not have a write-protected tab, please check the SD card adapter is unlocked. Then, try to delete the files again.

Solution 2. Use the Write-Protection Removal Tool

You may need to remove the write protection using a specialized tool if you cannot move/delete files. EaseUS Partition Master is a certified and trusted write-protection removal tool designed to allow users with any experience level. Its well-known "remove write-protection" feature helps make the storage device writeable in one click. It automatically bypasses the write protection by modifying the firmware and registry settings of the SD card. 

Step 1. Download and install EaseUS Partition Master, go to the Toolkit section, and click "Write Protection".

Click Remove write protection

Step 2. Select your write protected USB, USB external disk or SD card, and click "Disable".

Click Remove write protection

Other Features of EaseUS Partition Master:

Solution 3. Use CMD to Remove Read-Only Attributes

Due to read-only attributes, some SD cards do not allow to delete, copy or move any file it stores. In such cases, it is required to remove its read-only attributes to make the data writeable. Try to remove read-only attributes using CMD. Here are the steps:

Step 1: Connect the SD card to the computer by placing it in the card reader. 

Step 2: The "Windows key" should be pressed while you write "cmd."  

Step 3: Right-click "Command Prompt," the top result, and choose "Run as administrator" from the list.

Step 4: Type the following commands in the CMD window and hit "Enter" after each command. 

  • list disk
  • select disk * (The in the command stands for the disk number of your SD card. Check "This PC.")
  • attributes disk clear readonly

Run these commands to solve can’t delete files from sd card issue

It will display a message "Disk attributes cleared successfully." Close the CMD window and try to delete files on the SD card again.

Solution 4. Change Value Data in the Registry

Try looking for the problem in the Registry if CMD doesn't work to fix it. Let's examine the Registry value to see if there is a problem and need any necessary changes. 

Step 1: Press the "Windows + R" keys to execute the "Run" program.

Step 2: To open Registry, enter "regedit" and press Enter.

Step 3: Navigate the following path:


open registry editor

Step 4: Click StorageDevicePolicies. On the right plane, double-click WriteProtect. Change the Value data to 0.

Change your SD card’s registry value to zero

Step 5: Save changes and close the Registry window. 

Step 6: Reboot your computer to apply changes.

Solution 5. Check SD Card for Errors

SD cards are used in various devices like cameras, laptops, mobile, etc, to transfer or store data. It may cause corruption and numerous errors. In this situation, the SD card repair tool - EaseUS Partition Master, may help users to check SD cards for errors. 

This tool ensures a detailed check, including file system issues, bad sectors, corruption, and other logical errors. The utility offers a detailed report about the errors discovered after the scan. In addition, it attempts to fix these errors, if possible. Download EaseUS Partition Master for free, and follow these steps to check SD cards for errors.

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Step 1. Right-click the target partition that has a problem.

Step 2. Choose "Advanced" > "Check File System".

Step 3. Confirm if you want to hide the partition or not.

Step 4. In the Check File System window, check the "Try to fix errors if found" option.

Step 5. Click "Start" to check errors on your partition.

Solution 6. Format the SD Card

Formatting the SD card should be your last option because it will wipe out everything on your card. If any of the aforementioned fixes do not resolve the Can't delete files from SD card problem, you must format your SD card. Windows offer inbuilt utilities has some limitations. Sometimes, it does not work on write-protected or read-only attributes. 

In this situation, we recommend you use EaseUS Partition Master - the best SD card format tool, to format your SD card in one click. It supports all file systems, including NTFS, FAT16, FAT32, exFAT, Ext2/3/4. Its powerful "Format" feature allows users to make the card ready to use. 

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Download EaseUS Partition Master for free, and follow these steps to format your SD card.

Step 1. Find your SD card and right-click the partition you want to format and choose "Format".

Step 2. Set a new partition label, file system (NTFS/FAT32/EXT2/EXT3/EXT4/exFAT), and cluster size to the selected partition, then click "OK".

Step 3. Click "Yes" on the pop-up window to continue.

Step 4. Click the "Execute 1 Task(s)" button on the toolbar, then click "Apply" to start formatting your SD card.

Why Can't Delete Files from SD Card 

Being unable to delete files from an SD card indicates that difficulties prohibit you from carrying out the standard file deletion procedure. It could be caused by several things, including write protection, presently being used files, inadequate contact with the adapter, or file system instability. Here are some common reasons you can't delete files from an SD card.

  • SD Card Write Protect or physically locked
  • The SD card is damaged or corrupted
  • The file you need to delete is opening
  • The file is part of a protected system or hidden directory
  • The SD card is infected with malware or viruses
  • Poor contact with the adapter
  • File system corruption

Understanding the reason behind the problem is beneficial for you to choose the right solution. If you found this article helpful in solving your problem, please click on the social buttons below to share it with more people in need.



This page covers the six solutions to fix can't delete files from SD card problem. Each solution is workable in different circumstances. However, EaseUS Partition Master is a universal solution if you have no idea why you cannot delete files. This tool offers multiple features to delete files from any SD card and format it.

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FAQs About Can't Delete Files from SD Card

Find answers here if they have further questions about deleting files from your micro SD card or formatting it. This section covers FAQs to address common concerns about the topic. 

1. How to force delete files from a micro SD card?

If you are a Windows user, force deleting files from a micro SD card can be easy. All you need to do is connect the cord to the computer and select the files you want to delete from the card. Press the "Shift + Del." keys. Please note that this method will forcefully delete the selected files without prompt confirmation.

2. Why can I not format an SD card?

There can be several reasons why you can't format an SD card. The card might have read-only file attributes or be write-protected with a physical switch. Additionally, please check if the card is corrupted and has malware or bad sectors. In this situation, try a third-party tool to format your SD card.

3. How to permanently delete files on my SD card Android?

Follow these steps to delete files from an SD card:

  • Open File Manager, navigate files from your SD card, and long-press the file until a checkbox appears.
  • Select the files you want to delete and hit the "Delete" button.

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About the Author

Updated by Cici

Cici is the junior editor of the writing team of EaseUS. She accepted the systematic training on computers at EaseUS for over one year. Now, she wrote a lot of professional articles to help people resolve the issues of hard drive corruption, computer boot errors, and disk partition problems.

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