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Repairing your MicroSD card: this will save your data

MicroSD cards can increase your smartphone's internal memory and create more space for your photos, videos, music, and important files. But what happens if your MicroSD card suddenly stops working? Or if you accidentally delete a file? Here, we'll show you how to repair your MicroSD card and save your data.

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Back up your data

Sure, you've heard it all before, but in case you've missed it: you need to back up your files on a regular basis. If the worst case scenario does hit and something breaks, this means you have backup copies of any files and you don't need to launch a rescue mission to save your data. Here's a list of the best backup programs currently available for Android:

Repair your MicroSD card with Windows

First, turn off your smartphone, remove the MicroSD card and then plug it into any PC operating with Windows. If the computer recognizes the card, right-click it in Explorer, and then select Properties. After this, go to the Tools tab and click on Check Now in the Error Check area.

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Use the "Error checking" option to let Windows check for errors. / © ANDROIDPIT

After an initial check, the MicroSD card should be repaired. If everything worked, then you'll be able to access your data again.

If Windows doesn't recognize your MicroSD card, open the systems manager, and then click on Disk Management in the list on the left. If you see your MicroSD card in the right-hand view, right-click on it and then change drive letter and path.

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Use the Disk Manager to find your SD card. / © ANDROIDPIT

This will open up a new window, where you'll then have to click on Add and then assign a drive letter for the MicroSD card. When you've finished, it should be visible in Windows Explorer and the MicroSD card is repaired as previously described.

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Repair and rescue files with DiskDigger

If none of these tips worked, don't despair as there are plenty of other tools and programs available that can help you repair your MicroSD card. One of these is DiskDigger. This program can be used free of charge during the test period, and a single user license for a PC will set you back around $14.99.

After you have downloaded and installed DiskDigger, start the program and select your MicroSD card. Click on the "Next" tab three times and DiskDigger will then scan your MicroSD card. This may take some time but that's quite normal. After this is done, any files that were retrieved during the scan will be displayed.

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Recover your lost cat pictures with DiskDigger. / © DiskDigger

Select the files you want to save and click "Recover selected files". Now all you need to do is select where the files are to be saved and after you've clicked OK, it's all done.

Repair your Micro SD card with Android and rooting

If your smartphone is rooted and you want to repair the MicroSD card directly from your phone, there is also an Android version of DiskDigger available on Google Play Store. The free version allows you to restore images (JPG and PNG) and videos (MP4 and 3GP). The Pro version offers you the possibility of repairing other files on the MicroSD card too.

You can also get DiskDigger Pro for Android, which works without root access. However, this does not reconstruct original files, but instead temporarily restores previews of the originals. As a result, the rootless version of the file recovery can only save lower resolution images.

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DiskDigger for rooted Android smartphones. / © Google Playstore

The Android process runs in pretty much the same way as described above. However, you should keep in mind that the Android version of DiskDigger is not as efficient as the Windows version for repairing your MicroSD cards. Also, your smartphone should be rooted, because without extended system access, the app can't function effectively.

DiskDigger Pro file recovery Install on Google Play DiskDigger photo recovery Install on Google Play

Recover deleted files using Mac OS X

You can also use your Mac to restore data to MicroSD cards. The Data Recovery Wizard for Mac is a free program that can do this task, and is available for download from the manufacturer's website.

After you've finished downloading the program, insert the memory card into your Mac and start the program. You don't have to worry about any options or menus in this software, but the Data Recovery Wizard will guide you step by step through the process. Then select the memory card as well as data types that you want to restore.

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Data Recovery Wizard: Chose your SD card. / © ANDROIDPIT

After a short scan, the app will show you which files can be salvaged. For example, any files that you accidentally deleted will be displayed here. Another optional is an in-depth scan of the memory card. In the window that opens, you can select the files that have been lost.

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Data Recovery Wizard: choose the type of document. / © ANDROIDPIT

The last step is to choose a new location for your file. Restoring the file in its original location is not advised, especially if the SD card has a defect.

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Data Recovery Wizard: choose the file you want to recover. / © ANDROIDPIT

Data Recovery Wizard is also available in a Windows version. The free version restores only 2 GB of data. If you need more, you'll have to go with the more expensive option and buy the $89.95 version.

Conclusion

Under no circumstances should you just format your MicroSD card if you still want to save data. It is also recommended to eject the MicroSD card after successful data recovery and buy a new one so you can avoid any further data loss. If you've accidentally deleted files, you should try to write as little data as possible to the memory card.

Have you had the unfortunate experience of loosing important data? Will you be using any of these methods to see what you can get back? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • I was surprised at good experience retrieving most of the lost images from the memory card on a Canon camera with a free Windows disk retrieval app (Recuva). On the other hand, one of the reasons I bought a tablet with Marshmallow was the adoptable storage option to expand internal storage, knowing the microSD would be encrypted and useless for data retrieval. Backing up is the only safe option - I particularly like MetaCtl's Dropsync and Onesync apps to capture photos, scans, etc. immediately to local storage folders and then sync to the online Dropbox or OneDrive over wifi when it's convenient. Agree with the other comment that important files should be duplicated, at least, and safely located off the device.

  • You need to delineate your purpose for recovering the data in your SD card. If it's because irreplaceable financial documents are there on the card or you have photos that are in some way invaluable for you, try the above recovery options. If necessary, pay for the applications. If, on the other hand, it's just because you've lost your music collection or your movie collection, just forget about it. Download those movies and music again and next time, remember to scrupulously back up your data. That is because whatever SD card recovery option you use, many of your files are going to break or lose quality. In that scenario it doesn't make sense to pay for something that you can re-download for some extra money maybe. You'll never be sure that your songs and videos are of the original quality before the card became corrupted. The whole issue underscores the importance of choosing and implementing a proper cloud storage or mobile backup option. There are some excellent articles here on Androidpit to guide you about backing up your phone. Be sure also to check out the Androidpit deals store to get great deals on cloud storage and backup. There's nothing better than a lifetime subscription which sets your mind totally at peace as far as protecting your data is concerned.

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