Formating SD card that's shared

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Jim, Oct 7, 2004.

  1. Jim

    Jim Guest

    My camera book says to format the card when I install it in the camera. I
    just bought a 256 card and put it in - before I formatted it, it said 309
    pictures available. Why would I have to format it? Also - we plan to share
    this card between a PALM (W/ camera) and our Nikon 3200 cool pix. Will I
    have to format it every time I swap it back and forth. Is formatting
    something important to do? Do I have to format after taking it out (Then
    putting it back in) to take to the store to make prints?
    I am not that computer literate so if this is a stupid question - sorry!
    This is only my 2nd ever post (First was 20 minutes ago) and first digital
    camera. We only had b/w when I was a kid so these things like format are
    foreign to me.

    Jim
     
    Jim, Oct 7, 2004
    #1
    1. Advertising

  2. "Jim" <jkc84xx@optonline(take this and XX out).net> wrote in message
    news:GLi9d.20317$...
    > My camera book says to format the card when I install it in the camera. I
    > just bought a 256 card and put it in - before I formatted it, it said 309
    > pictures available. Why would I have to format it? Also - we plan to share
    > this card between a PALM (W/ camera) and our Nikon 3200 cool pix. Will I
    > have to format it every time I swap it back and forth. Is formatting
    > something important to do? Do I have to format after taking it out (Then
    > putting it back in) to take to the store to make prints?
    > I am not that computer literate so if this is a stupid question - sorry!
    > This is only my 2nd ever post (First was 20 minutes ago) and first digital
    > camera. We only had b/w when I was a kid so these things like format are
    > foreign to me.
    >
    > Jim


    Formatting will destroy any data on the card, so quite definitely do NOT do
    it just before getting your prints. (You won't have any).
     
    Laurence Wilmer, Oct 13, 2004
    #2
    1. Advertising

  3. Jim

    Kath Adams Guest

    Jim wrote:
    > My camera book says to format the card when I install it in the
    > camera. I just bought a 256 card and put it in - before I formatted
    > it, it said 309 pictures available. Why would I have to format it?
    > Also - we plan to share this card between a PALM (W/ camera) and our
    > Nikon 3200 cool pix. Will I have to format it every time I swap it
    > back and forth. Is formatting something important to do? Do I have to
    > format after taking it out (Then putting it back in) to take to the
    > store to make prints?
    > I am not that computer literate so if this is a stupid question -
    > sorry! This is only my 2nd ever post (First was 20 minutes ago) and
    > first digital camera. We only had b/w when I was a kid so these
    > things like format are foreign to me.
    >
    > Jim


    You would normally only format when you wanted to erase all data from
    the card, or when it's brand new. DON'T format unless you want to erase
    everything. Just move it between the Palm and the Nikon. If there are
    pics on there that you don't want printed by the store, then just erase
    those.
    --
    Kath Adams
    MS MVP - Windows (IE/OE)
     
    Kath Adams, Oct 14, 2004
    #3
  4. Jim

    Alan Meyer Guest

    "Jim" <jkc84xx@optonline(take this and XX out).net> wrote in message
    news:GLi9d.20317$...
    > My camera book says to format the card when I install it in the camera. I
    > just bought a 256 card and put it in - before I formatted it, it said 309
    > pictures available. Why would I have to format it?


    "Formatting" writes information to the card that is needed in order
    to store photos or other data on it. I don't know what formatting
    information is written to a memory card, but what gets written to a
    disk are things like block boundaries, directory entries, and some
    sort of allocation table that says what blocks on the disk have real
    data in them and which ones are empty. Data is different from a
    material object in this way - you can tell if a glass is half full
    of water, but you can't tell if a card or disk is half full of data.
    If the computer "reads" the card or disk it will get back a series
    of ones and zeroes, but it won't know whether they represent
    data that got purposely stored there, or are just random bits.
    It also won't know what bits belong to one photo and what bits
    belong to a different photo. Making sense of those bits,
    organizing them into separate photo files, requires that the
    card have a known, standard, format which must be written
    onto the card before any other data can be stored there.

    It sounds like the card you have was already formatted.

    > Also - we plan to share
    > this card between a PALM (W/ camera) and our Nikon 3200 cool pix. Will I
    > have to format it every time I swap it back and forth. Is formatting
    > something important to do? Do I have to format after taking it out (Then
    > putting it back in) to take to the store to make prints?


    I don't know the answer for SD cards. For the CompactFlash
    cards that I use the answer is that all the devices that I put
    them in use the same format. I formatted the card once, when
    I got it, and can put it in different devices without reformatting,
    and can share files between the devices by copying them to
    the card and then moving the card and reading it on the other
    device.

    I suspect SD cards work the same way. Perhaps someone
    who uses them can say. In any case, experiment. Take the
    card out of the Nikon and put it in the Palm. Read from it,
    and write to it. Then put it back in the Nikon and see if the
    original data is still there. I'm guessing it will be. You won't
    break anything by trying this. The worst that can happen is
    that you will lose the data on the card and have to reformat.
    Save your photos first, then try it.

    > I am not that computer literate so if this is a stupid question - sorry!
    > This is only my 2nd ever post (First was 20 minutes ago) and first digital
    > camera. We only had b/w when I was a kid so these things like format are
    > foreign to me.


    Not a dumb question at all. Keeping up with technology has
    gotten to be a challenge for all of us. But it's good that
    you're trying.

    Alan
     
    Alan Meyer, Oct 20, 2004
    #4
  5. The card may well have been formatted already, right out of the box, but it
    will be more reliable if you format it again. If you are going to use it in
    2 cameras you should not have to reformat it. It is very much like a
    computer diskette.
     
    Michael A. Covington, Oct 20, 2004
    #5
    1. Advertising

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

It takes just 2 minutes to sign up (and it's free!). Just click the sign up button to choose a username and then you can ask your own questions on the forum.
Similar Threads
  1. Sr.

    Formating XP

    Sr., Aug 10, 2004, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    3
    Views:
    558
    Plato
    Aug 10, 2004
  2. MahaRaj

    Formating C Drive from D

    MahaRaj, Sep 28, 2004, in forum: Computer Support
    Replies:
    7
    Views:
    1,927
    mhicaoidh
    Sep 29, 2004
  3. Dave

    Formating a memory card question

    Dave, Mar 6, 2004, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    1
    Views:
    360
  4. Rob
    Replies:
    4
    Views:
    671
    Dave Cohen
    Oct 22, 2004
  5. Tobyruffles

    Formating card

    Tobyruffles, Dec 31, 2004, in forum: Digital Photography
    Replies:
    2
    Views:
    272
    chidalgo
    Dec 31, 2004
Loading...

Share This Page