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How to Format SD Card Using CMD | Full Details

Read and learn how to format SD card using CMD. Altogether, three SD card formatting approaches are given here to help format SD memory cards effortlessly, including formatting SD cards using CMD Command Prompt, Windows utility, and third-party SD card formatting tools in Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, 7, XP or Vista.

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Updated on Apr 19, 2024

Workable Solutions Step-by-step Troubleshooting
Use CMD Alaternive - EaseUS SD Card Formatter Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master and right-click the partition on your external hard drive/USB/SD card that you want...Full steps
Use CMD on Windows 11/10/8/7 Step 1. Type cmd in the search box in Windows 11/10, right-click on Command Prompt, and choose "Run as administrator"...Full steps
Use Two Windows Built-in Tools

Method 1. Perform SD Card Formatting...Full steps

Method 2. Use Disk Management to Format SD Card...Full steps

Format SD Card Using CMD Alternative - EaseUS SD Card Formatter [Easiest]

Format Tool: EaseUS Partition Master - Perfect CMD AlternativeThird-party SD card formatter - EaseUS Partition Master can help you format a damaged or corrupted memory card in Windows 11/10/8/7. This SD card formatter helps users simply format SD cards to any wanted file system format in only a few simple clicks. Then, follow the easy steps to finish the task.

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Step 1. Launch EaseUS Partition Master, right-click the partition on your external hard drive/USB/SD card which you want to format and choose the "Format" option.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 1

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

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 2

Step 3. In the Warning window, click "Yes" to continue.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 3

Step 4. Click the "Execute 1 Task(s)" button in the top-left corner to review the changes, then click "Apply" to start formatting your external hard drive/USB/SD card.

Format External Hard Drive/USB/SD Card - 4

Hint: If the SD card is larger than 4GB, you can only choose FAT32, NTFS, or EXT2/EXT3; and if the partition is smaller than 4GB, you can choose FAT, FAT32, NTFS, or EXT2/EXT3.

How to Format SD Card Using CMD

Format Tool: DiskPart CMD

Diskpart is a built-in tool in Windows that manages your hard drives. You can use it to format the damaged or corrupted internal or external hard drive, USB drive, SD card, etc. This method is somewhat higher-level, and the Diskpart command is not recommended if you find it hard to go through the whole process. 

Hint: Turn to Method 2 or Method 3 if you are a Windows beginner. 

If you don't know anything about CMD, we recommend a risk-free way to format your SD card, which is using professional memory card format software. But if you stick to this method, let's see the step-by-step guide below on how to format SD cards using CMD in Windows 11/10. 

Step 1. Type cmd in the search box to run Command Prompt as administrator.

Step 2. Type diskpart and press "Enter."

Step 3. Type list disk to list all the available drives and press "Enter."

Step 4. Type select disk K ( where K is the SD card name you want to format) and press "Enter."

Step 5. Type clean and press "Enter" to erase the SD card.

Step 6. Type create partition primary and hit "Enter" to make a new partition.

Step 7. Type format fs=ntfs (or format fs=exfat) and press "Enter" to format the drive with NTFS or exFAT. 

Step 8. Type assign drive letter M( where M is the new drive letter name) to assign a drive letter.

format sd card using cmd

Then, you can continue typing exit to close the program when DiskPart says it has successfully formatted the volume. Don't hesitate to let more users know how to use DiskPart to format a memory SD card.


If you have mistakenly formatted other hard drives, don't despair; you can use a powerful data recovery application to recover data from a formatted hard drive with ease. 

Video - How to Format Memory Card Using CMD

This video presents how to format any drive using CMD for advanced users.

  • 00:04 Open Command Prompt
  • 00:26 Format USB Drive

Also read:

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Fix Corrupted/Damaged SD Card Without Losing Data

How do I fix a corrupted Micro SD card? What will you do when your SD card is corrupted or not reading? Follow the content navigation, you'll get a clear guide to fix corrupted SD card on your own.

Corrupted SD card

How to Format SD Card Using Two Windows Built-in Tools

Apart from the above two ways, you can also use Windows utilities to format the SD card. In this part, we'll show you how to format a memory card using the Windows quick format feature and Disk Management.

Method 1. Perform SD Card Formatting Use File Explorer

When formatting your SD card in Windows Explorer, connect your SD card to your computer at the very beginning. Then follow the tutorial here to format the SD card:

Step 1. Press "Windows key + E" to bring up the Windows Explorer.

Or Click and open up the "Computer" in Windows 7 or "This PC" in Windows 11/10.

Step 2. Right-click on the connected SD card and select "Format".

Step 3. On the format window, you'll be told to select the desired file system, which is set to NTFS, FAT32 for 32GB SD cards, or exFAT for 64GB SD cards.

Step 4. Click "Start".

format SD card using file explorer

related articles

Windows Was Unable to Complete the Format

You'll probably meet the "Windows was unable to complete the format" problem. In this case, you can try to fix the issue or choose other ways to do the job.

Can't format SD card in Windows

Method 2. Use Disk Management to Format SD Card

Step 1. Right-click on "Computer" or "This PC," select Management, and then Disk Management under the Storage section.

Step 2. Right-click on the SD card partition and select "Format".

Step 3: On the format window, check the box of Perform a quick format, and in the same way, you need to choose a file system and allocation unit size.

Step 4: Click "OK."

format sd card in Windows Disk Management

Back to use EaseUS Partition Master?

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Why Do You Format SD Card/Memory Card

What does the formatting SD card do? Under many circumstances, people need to format SD Card to NTFS, FAT32, or exFAT file system in order to:

  • Reset the SD card file system on a specific device, such as a digital camera, Android smartphone, game console, music player, etc.
  • Fix or repair a problematic SD memory card from corruption, damage, inaccessibility, etc.
  • Clean up the SD card, remove all files, and restore its full capacity.
  • Review and prolong the SD card's lifespan.

When it comes to fixing these issues by formatting the SD card, you may hear the solution that some advanced Windows users suggest - to format the SD card using CMD.

So, can you apply the CMD command to format the SD card? Sure! In the next section, we'll be showing you the complete procedure of formatting SD cards using Diskpart CMD and two other alternative formatting tools in Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, 7, XP, and Vista.

Formatting is a process of deleting all information and setting it up as a brand new one. So, make a full backup first if you care about data. See what to backup before formatting PC.

Bonus Tips - How to Protect SD Card Data

Formatting can be done on an SD card due to several reasons. You format an SD card or Memory card to remove data completely from the SD card and when its file system gets damaged or the SD card seems to be corrupted. However, you may lose data after the formatting process. To protect SD card data, you should keep these things in mind.

Tip 1. Back-Up Data Before Formatting

The best way to avoid further data loss is to back up files regularly on a storage device like the SD card. To do so, you can manually copy and paste these files from the SD card to another place or use free backup and recovery software. Free backup software like EaseUS Todo Backup makes it easy to schedule and run backup actively while data is increasing daily.

backup files

For a step-by-step guide, you can refer to this page for help: How to Backup SD Card Before Formatting. In 5 minutes, all your system, files, disk, or partitions are set up for automatic backups, no matter an individual photo or a whole C drive.

Tip 2. Safely Eject the Card from a PC

Just like other external hard drives, USB flash drives, and memory cards, you should always safely eject the SD card. That is to say, you should not remove the card from a device when it is still being accessed, such as transferring data or reading data, etc.

Tip 3. Don't Use One Card on Many Devices

Another important thing is not using a single memory card on many different devices. Different devices may work on different file systems, which may be incompatible with what the memory card is formatted with. In this case, the card tends to die. Therefore, do not use one SD card, USB drive, or memory card on many devices.

Tip 4. Stop Using the SD Card When Getting Any Errors

As soon as your SD card gets errors like "The SD card is not detected", or "the disk is write protected", stop using the SD card immediately. Otherwise, further damage to the card would happen without letting you know.


You have learned how to format SD cards using CMD with Diskpart, EaseUS Partition Master, and Windows tools. If you are not familiar with CMD or the Windows doesn’t go smoothly, you can format your memory card with EaseUS Partition Master. As mentioned before, besides partition formatting, this competent disk management program supports many basic and advanced options, such as converting FAT to NTFS, converting MBR to GPT, migrating OS to SSD/HDD, and more. Try it, and you'll find it great and helpful. 

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Extended Reading: What Else Can CMD Do Besides Formatting SD Card

On this page, we guide you on how to format an SD card with CMD or its alternative formatting solutions on Windows 11/10/8.1/8/7. Some of you may also want to know what else CMD can do for you. Here, we collected three major solutions and guide you to use them on an SD card successfully:

Feature 1. Check and Fix SD Card Corrupted Error with CHKDSK Command

  • Connect the SD card to the computer.
  • Run Diskpart, and type the command lines here: chkdsks E:/ f /r /x and hit Enter. 

Replace E: with the drive letter of your SD card. Here are the syntax meanings:

  • /F: Check for disk errors, not bad sectors. 
  • /R: Locate the bad sectors on the target hard disk and try to recover the readable information from the bad sectors (implies /F).
  • /X: Forces the volume to dismount first, if necessary. It also includes the functionality of /f.

Feature 2. Delete All Partitions and Clean Up SD Card One-Time with Clean Command

  • Connect SD card to computer.
  • Type the command below in DiskPart one by one and hit Enter each time:
  • list disk
  • select disk 2 (Replace 2 with SD card drive number)
  • clean

The clean command will delete all existing partitions and files on your SD card, restoring full capacity to your card.

Feature 3. Remove Write Protection from SD Card with Clear Readonly Command

  • Connect SD card to computer and open DiskPart
  • Type the commands below one by one and hit Enter each time:
  • list disk
  • select disk 2 (Replace 2 with the SD card drive number.)
  • attributes disk clear readonly

If you want to learn more tutorials about how to use CMD to fix SD or other storage device issues, feel free to follow our articles or use the search button on our site for help. 

FAQs About Format Memory Card Using CMD

If you have more questions about how to format an SD card using cmd, follow the questions here and find answers below:

1. How can you format an SD card to FAT32 using CMD?

To format SD card to FAT32 using CMD:

  1. 1. Type cmd on the search box and click to open it.
  2. 2. In the Command Prompt, type the commands:
  • diskpart
  • list disk
  • select disk X (X is the selected disk. And you can change X with your disk number.)
  • list volume
  • select volume * (Replace * with the volume number of the target SD card you want to format.)
  • format fs=fat32 quick
  • exit

2. How do I force an SD card to Format?

  1. 1. Right-click the Start icon and select Disk Management.
  2. 2. Find and right-click the SD card and select Format.
  3. 3. Select the proper file system and Perform a quick format. Click OK.

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About the Author

Updated by Roxanne

Roxanne is one of the main contributors to EaseUS and has created over 200 posts that help users solve multiple issues and failures on digital devices like PCs, Mobile phones, tablets, and Macs. She loves to share ideas with people of the same interests.

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Written by Jean

Jean is recognized as one of the most professional writers in EaseUS. She has kept improving her writing skills over the past 10 years and helped millions of her readers solve their tech problems on PC, Mac, and iOS devices.

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