How to format an Android flash drive – SD card instructions

How to format an Android flash drive – instructions for the SD card.

Many mobile phones have a dedicated memory card slot. Installing such a card allows you to expand the internal storage. However, sometimes problems occur in the operation of the external storage device. This can be resolved by formatting the additional storage. Therefore, every mobile device owner should know how to format SD card on Android OS.

What is formatting a memory card?

Formatting is the process of converting a memory stick to a specific format. Therefore, by formatting a memory stick you are changing its file system:

  • FAT. An obsolete type that has a limit on the size of files that can be uploaded (up to 2GB).
  • FAT An enhanced format whose file size limit is 4 GB.
  • Modified FAT with no size limit on the files that can be saved.
  • The most popular format for PC without restrictions.

The file system types shown above are supported by most Mobile Phones. If you connect a microSD card of a different format to your gadget, it is very likely that it will not be able to recognize the external drive or display the content. Thus, the format avoids reading problems.

Also important is the formatting procedure itself, which results in a complete erasure of the contents of the flash drive. This fact can be seen not only as a disadvantage, but also as an obvious advantage for those who want to delete files quickly.

How to do it

A memory card can be formatted in several ways. Not all can be done with a mobile phone. The operation, among others, is carried out through a computer. You can select the options you want and put them into practice.

Via phone settings

This is the basic format option that uses Android’s built-in functionality to implement it. You don’t need to install any additional software or ask a third-party device for help. Just follow the instructions:

  • Insert the microSD card into the corresponding slot of your mobile phone.
  • Open device settings.
  • Go to “Storage” (“Memory”).
  • Select your memory card.
  • Press the “Format” button.
  • Confirm the operation.

Depending on the mobile phone manufacturer and the version of the operating system, the names of some menu items may vary. However, this is unlikely to be a major hurdle for you, as there is a search bar in the device settings that allows you to find the desired section using keywords.

through the computer

Formatting the SD card on a mobile phone has its drawbacks. In particular, the user cannot select the format, since the operation is performed automatically. If you need a specific file system, use your computer, following the instructions:

  • Insert the memory card into the mobile phone.
  • Connect the phone to the PC using a USB cable.
  • Start the “This Computer” application.
  • Open the tab with your mobile phone.
  • Click on the PCM in the name of the external drive.
  • Select the Format option.
  • Specify the preferred file system type.
  • Press the “Start” button.

If you wish, you can connect the memory card to your computer without the need for a mobile phone.

That’s right, you’ll need an adapter that fits your PC’s particular outlet.

through recovery

Finally, you can perform the operation through Recovery. This is an auxiliary menu for mobile phones that has functionality similar to BIOS. To access it, you need:

  • Turn off the mobile phone.
  • Press the desired key combination (usually “Power” and “Volume Down”).
  • Wait until the Android icon appears on the screen.

Recovery can be standard or third party. Unfortunately, formatting can only be done through custom retrievers. If you have CWM installed on your mobile phone, please do as follows

  • Go to “mounts and storage”.
  • Select “format sd card”.
  • Confirm the action.

When using TWRP, which is the most popular custom recovery, slightly different instructions apply:

  • Go to the “Cleaning” section.
  • Click “Advanced Cleanup”.
  • Check “Internal storage”.
  • Swipe to format.

Note that in many retrievers, the control is not through the touch screen, but through the physical keys. For example, switching between menu items is done with the volume keys, and confirmation of an action is done by pressing the power key.

Posible problems

If you follow the instructions carefully, it is unlikely that you will encounter difficulties when formatting. However, many users have reported that they are unable to format a memory card simply because the mobile phone cannot see it. Most of the time this is due to a faulty disk drive, but you can try the operation using a computer. It may recognize the MicroSD card and allow you to select the correct format.

Also, some mobile phone owners complain that all files disappear from memory card after formatting. Unfortunately, this is one of the peculiarities of the operation in question. Formatting without deleting data is not possible. So you will have to accept the loss or turn to third-party file recovery software:

  • Super Backup;
  • DiskDigger;
  • Undelete.

All apps work on a similar principle. They first scan the repository for a thumbnail of the files and then retrieve them. However, keep in mind that a thorough search will require the provision of root rights. This operation has a number of consequences, including automatically removing the mobile phone from the warranty.