How to Format SD Card for Raspberry Pi Quickly
- Connect the SD card adapter to your computer by using an external card reader. Also note – Mac OS 10.6.5 or earlier does not support exFAT format, which most 64 GB SD cards are formatted to. This means that you won't be able to format or use exFAT card on your computer.
- The SD Memory Card Formatter doesn't support SD/SDHC/SDXC Card encrypted by the 'BitLocker To Go' functionality of Windows. Administrator Rights is required for both Windows and Mac OS to execute SD Memory Card Formatter.
- This small program more popular in the field of SD cards format, it is recommendable to use this formatter to get the high or optimum performance from your SD Cards. SD Memory card formatted software compatibility with all Windows versions and Mac versions. Some requirement systems for both Windows and Mac are as under.
- How To Format Micro SD Cards And USB Drives. Thanks to Disk Utility, the issue of how to format USB on Mac is fairly straightforward. Likewise, you can use this tool to format Micro SD cards, hard drives, and so on, getting your new device into the right condition: Plug the device into your Mac. Go to Applications Utilities and launch Disk Utility.
Yup, you are reading this article because you already have your Raspberry Pi SD card on your table. So we will not discuss on how helpful it can be for your Pi projectsand other daily stuff that you do with your little computing system. Today, I will explain how you can format SD card for Raspberry Pi quickly and easily.
Formatting an SD card from a Mac is simple and quick thanks to the Disk Utility application. This is a commonly required task before an SD card or Micro SD card can be used as a storage medium for.
Some reasons make you do the formatting of the SD (Secure Digital) memory card, like;
- If you feel that the SD card has less storage capacity than mentioned due to pre-partition
- If you find any corrupt files or software on the card and can’t remove it manually
- Sometimes you don’t want to use the preloaded Operating System on the card and want to boot it up with another OS
- Some random cleaning process of your system
How to Format SD Card for Raspberry Pi?
Before formatting an SD card, let’s take a look at the things you will need to perform the formatting process. Most of the parts come in a Raspberry Pi starter kit.
- A Raspberry Pi board (Pi 3 preferred)
- Pi compatible SD memory card (obviously)
- A Raspberry Pi power supply
- A display that can be connected to Raspberry Pi
- An HDMI cable and a Micro USB cable
- USB mouse and keyboard
First of all, attach all the parts and components with your Raspberry Pi device and turn it into a full-blown computer. I assume that you know the process. So not going into detail for that.
There are a couple of ways to format the Raspberry Pi SD card depending on the capacity of it. If your SD card is less than 32GB storage capacity, then you can format it in a standard way like as FAT32, but if your card has the higher storage capacity than 32GB, then it should be formatted as exFAT. We will take a look at them all.
Sd Card Formatter For Mac Free Download
A. Formatting an SD, SDHC card having less than 32GB storage
For formatting such memory cards, you need not set up the Raspberry Pi. With a laptop or any other desktop system, you can easily format such flash storage devices in FAT (File Allocation Type).
- First, install an SD formatter tool for formatting an SD card (I recommend to use SD card formatter) on your laptop
- Insert the flash card in your system
- Open the application and select your USB drive to format
- You can adjust the settings from the ‘Options’ menu
- Set the ‘Format Type’ as Quick and ‘Format Size Adjustment’ to On
- Click on ‘Ok.’
- Select ‘Format’ button
That’s it. You have formatted the SD card for Raspberry Pi board, and it is ready to go with your Pi setup.
The official way to format Pi SD card
The official way means we will use the NOOBS (New Out Of Box Software) to do the formatting. As you may know that the NOOBS is an installation manager which helps to install the Operating System and other compatible apps on the Raspberry Pi board.
Where to get NOOBS?
If you have purchased an official Raspberry Pi SD card, then most probably, it comes with preloaded NOOBS software, so you need to download it separately. But, in case, you don’t have an official card, then you can download NOOBSfrom the official website.
How to format SD card to FAT32 using NOOBS?
For Linux Users
For the Linux systems, a compressed image file of Linux Distributions is used for Raspberry Pi. I will use Ubuntu system which is currently the best Linux Distribution to show you the process.
Formatting an SD card in Linux (Ubuntu)
Step-1: Open the Disk Utility application
Step-2: Select the SD card drive
Step-3: Select the format type as FAT
Step-4: Click on ‘Format’ button
For Windows Users
Formatting an SD card in Windows Operating System is a quick and easy process. There are a couple of ways to do that.
1) Using inbuilt method
This is the most common method used by the Windows PC users to format an SD card or a USB storage device.
- Open the Windows Explorer
- Locate the SD card in the window
- Right-click on the drive letter
- In the pop-up window, choose ‘Format.’
- Now, a formatting window will open
- Choose the file system as ‘FAT32 (Default)’
- Mark the box of ‘Quick Format.’
- Click on ‘Start’ button.
After some time, you will see a message that the SD card is formatted and ready to use.
2) With third-party app
There is some reliable software available for Windows systems too which help to format the SD card reliably. I prefer to use SD Formatter for the FAT32 type of format for the memory card. With the application like this and EaseUS partition tool, you can quickly format the SD memory card into FAT, FAT32, NTFS, and other types.
B. Formatting an SDHC/SDXC card higher than 32GB capacity
As I mentioned before, if your SDHC/SDXC card has a larger size than 32GB, then it will be formatted in an exFAT system, mainly if you use an official way.
Does Raspberry Pi support exFAT format?
You will not love to read, but the Raspberry Pi boards don’t support the exFAT formatting type. That is the main reason why you need some different way to format a memory card with above 32GB capacity. If you use a memory card formatted with this type, then your Raspberry Pi will not boot up, and you will think there is a defect in the board. But the culprit is the formatting type you used for your SDHC/SDXC (every memory card above 32GB storage space is an SDXC card) memory device.
Format a 64GB SDXC card for Raspberry Pi
To format a memory card larger than 32GB, you can take help of third-party software like FAT format. Disk Utility is also a reliable source to do the formatting process.
Go to the application, select the drive of SD card and click on format button to wipe out all the data from the storage device.
After formatting an SD card
So, you have formatted the SD card using the methods mentioned as above. What next? You have to make it ready to be used with your Raspberry Pi. Install NOOBS software in it, download the Operating System and install on SD card. Then, attach it to your Raspberry Pi board and start enjoying with your beloved device.
Hope this guide helped you in the way you want. Let me know your thoughts on this. Also if you have any other method in mind to format an SD card for Raspberry Pi or familiar with any other app which can help to do so, then please share it in the comments section below.
SD cards are the ultimate little lifesavers in extending the storage space on your smart devices. But, you’ll need to format an SD card on your Mac before you can use it.
We’ll take a look at the steps needed to do this, so you can get back to work. The steps are pretty simple, and require just your SD card and the Disk Utility app. Luckily, Disk Utility is already included with macOS.
These ultra-tiny flash memory cards are used primarily for extra iPhone and camera storage. It’s important to note that you will want to back up any of the files that are already on your SD card. After the formatting process is completed, the card will be completely wiped clean and the files will be deleted.
How to format an SD card on Mac
Once your SD or micro SD card has been backed up, you will be ready to format the storage device. Here are the steps to make it happen:
Sd Card Reformat Mac
- Insert the SD card into the slot on your Mac.
- Navigate to Finder > Applications > Utilities.
- Open Disk Utility.
- In the sidebar, select the SD card that you are trying to format.
- At the top of Disk Utility, press Erase.
After you have pressed the Erase button in Disk Utility, the app will ask you to rename the SD card. Do this, and then tap the Erase button in the bottom right-hand corner.
Additionally, there is a section that asks you which format you want the SD card to be formatted in. We recommend switching this format option to ExFAT if it’s not already selected.
From here, Disk Utility will work its magic and will format your SD card. Once it is completed, you will want to press the “Done” button in the bottom right-hand corner.
Now, you might be a bit excited to have this finished, but don’t just go pulling out the SD card yet. Instead, find the formatted card in the sidebar on the left and press the eject button. Doing so will ensure that something doesn’t get broken, which will usually need a reformat before the card will properly work again.
Format Sd Card Windows 10
What if I don’t have an SD card slot?
After Apple decided to redesign the MacBook Pro lineup in 2016, this meant the death of the SD card slot. Most MacBook models previous to this iteration have the slot built into the side, but if not you’ll need an extra piece.
Depending on which version of the Mac you own, you will need to get a USB SD card reader. These are relatively inexpensive, again, depending on which model Mac you are trying to use this with.
After you have completed the steps above, your SD card will be wiped clean, and can then be used for any application that you seem fit. Whether that’s to use it in a digital camera, build a Raspberry Pi system, or any other project that you want to complete.
If you run into issues, let us know in the comments below, and we’ll be sure to help figure out what’s going on. This is a pretty straightforward process, but you’ll need to follow the steps correctly, as Disk Utility can also wipe other connected hard drives.
Andrew is a freelance writer based on the East Coast of the US.
He has written for a variety of sites over the years, including iMore, Android Central, Phandroid, and a few others. Now, he spends his days working for an HVAC company, while moonlighting as a freelance writer at night.