Formatting the memory card

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Toomanyputters, Feb 18, 2006.

  1. Toomanyputters

    Miles Guest

    Then why do make such a comment if you have zero knowledge?
    Miles, Feb 22, 2006
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  2. Toomanyputters

    Bill Funk Guest

    OK, real simple, because you don't seem to understand:
    FOR YOU, NO.
    How's that?
    Bill Funk, Feb 22, 2006
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  3. Toomanyputters

    Bill Funk Guest

    I never claimed it's necessary.
    It *IS* useful; many find it so.
    The fact that some don't find it useful does not mean it's not useful.
    "Valid"? To whom?
    Maybe it's not clear that reformating *IS* useful, but not necessary.
    I've said, several time, if you or anyone else doesn't want to format
    a card, don't. To t hen continue with the argument, "But *I* don't
    need to reformat!" is just dumb. Fine: don't reformat.
    But to claim that there's no valid reason to reformat when such
    reasons have been put forward is, um, dumb. If the reasons don't apply
    to you, don't reformat. Can I make that any clearer?
    Bill Funk, Feb 22, 2006
  4. Just because I don't subscribe to the end-user mags doesn't mean that I
    have no knowledge of Windows. I have plenty of Windows knowledge (and
    certifications) - which is probably why my personal computers are
    Randall Ainsworth, Feb 22, 2006
  5. Toomanyputters

    Miles Guest

    Your comment: "Like a magazine devoted to sucking Bill Gates' wiener
    would know about digital photography." How does that relate to *your*
    knowledge of computers, when you haven't read the magazine for a number
    of years?

    Miles, Feb 22, 2006
  6. Toomanyputters

    JC Dill Guest

    So, how is it useful to format the card in the camera if all the files
    and folders were deleted when you transferred the images to your
    No such reasons have been put forward.

    JC Dill, Feb 22, 2006
  7. Nobody *needs* to reformat. This argument seems to be all about
    *you*, and your desire to include formatting into your work
    It is not necessary, you admitted it is not clear that it is
    even useful except to *you* because you choose to make it so.

    Don't call other people's methods dumb if you live in a glass
    house surrounded by a rock garden.
    Floyd Davidson, Feb 22, 2006
  8. Toomanyputters

    Bill Funk Guest

    Again, you're missing what I'm saying.
    I'll try one more time:
    For *you*, because of your system, it may not be a good thing.
    *FOR YOU*
    But you are not a standard for everyone else./
    So, I'm not saying that, once you've deleted the files/folders while
    the card is in your reader.
    See above.
    But, to make it more clear: you are not the only one here. Not
    everyone does things your way.
    So, if it's not necessary for you to format the card, don't format
    your card. For you, it's not necessary.
    Bill Funk, Feb 22, 2006
  9. Well, I've been doing computers since NT Certified as well as
    A+ for both PC and Mac (back when they did Mac A+), and have worked in
    IT for many years. I see the magazines but don't waste my money on
    Randall Ainsworth, Feb 23, 2006
  10. Toomanyputters

    Miles Guest

    And how does that relate to your irrelevant and irreverent remark?

    Miles, Feb 23, 2006
  11. JC Dill wrote:
    If you are using Move rather than Copy you are increasing the risk of
    loosing data if something goes wrong. Hence my preferred way (as it is
    with many others) to use Copy followed by a re-format.

    David J Taylor, Feb 23, 2006
  12. And how does a magazine that is a Microsoft suck-up have any knowledge
    of digital photography?
    Randall Ainsworth, Feb 23, 2006
  13. Toomanyputters

    Bill Funk Guest

    And I thought it was about Dill's need to continue to insist that
    formatting isn't used in his workflow, so everyone should stop talking
    about it.
    Yes, I'm sure that's it.
    Exactly. Thank you for understanding.
    Anything else?
    What, exactly, are you reading?
    If you'll look at what I said when using the word "dumb" (it's right
    up there, take a look), you will see that I said a continued denial
    that reasons for using a format were given was dumb. I never said
    anyone else's methods of getting images off cards was dumb.
    Maybe your reading comprehension is, um, dumb?
    Bill Funk, Feb 23, 2006
  14. Toomanyputters

    JC Dill Guest

    I'm not asking if it "may" be a good thing or not. I'm asking a very
    specific question.

    WHAT IS THE BENEFIT to formatting the card if all the files and
    folders have already been deleted?

    The answer is one of two things:

    There is NO BENEFIT. This is my assertion.


    There is _____________________ benefit. (fill in the blank).

    I repeat - no such reasons have been put forward. I asked a specific
    question and no one has put forward any reasons to show why formatting
    is beneficial in answer to the question I asked.

    JC Dill, Feb 24, 2006
  15. Toomanyputters

    Bill Funk Guest

    You are beinbg a child.
    Try again to understand: for *you* (that means YOU, with YOUR style of
    work) there may be no reason to format.
    What else do you want?
    If you don't want to format, don't format.
    You don't need my permission to not format.
    I'm not going to tell you to not format.
    Then don't format.
    Bill Funk, Feb 25, 2006
  16. Toomanyputters

    Miles Guest

    And why do you think it is a Microsoft suck-up and not have any knowledge
    of digital photography when you haven't read it for years?

    It appears that you are the one without knowledge.

    Miles, Feb 25, 2006
  17. The benefits are:

    1 - that the default FAT, file and directory structure is restored. No
    empty or fragmented structures remain.

    2 - that fewer writes may be required to do a format than to clean out a
    card. It is therefore quicker and less stress on the card

    3 - by formatting in the actual device (e.g. camera) the correct format
    for the device in question will be done.

    It's not compulsory, simply a recommendation that you are welcome to
    follow should you wish.

    David J Taylor, Feb 25, 2006
  18. I'll second this. I have a 4GB card that came formatted, so I just used it.
    It seemed to work in all the cameras I tried it in. But it became unwritable
    in the midst of a session. Oops. Checking things out, the file structure was
    wrong, and there was less space on the card than there should have been.
    Formatting it my main camera fixed it, and there have been no problems
    My understanding is that a format _should_ write every cell on the card, and
    thus is more stress on the card than simply deleting all files, which should
    be just an operation on a few pointers in the file allocation table.
    This one's important, although only the first time. Note that it implies not
    sharing cards between cameras<g>. (The grin is because not being able to
    share cards between cameras was given as the reason for not buying Memory
    Stick cameras, and I, being a Memory Stick fan (the connector is far better
    than the CF card connector) didn't think that argument made sense.)
    Due to item 2, I'd been avoiding formatting at all. Having been burnt, I now
    think that it should be done once when the card is new and then occasionally

    David J. Littleboy
    Tokyo, Japan
    David J. Littleboy, Feb 25, 2006
  19. David,

    A full low-level format would do as you state, but what I am talking about
    is the "format" command in the camera, which typically just resets a few
    structures to a known state, and doesn't actually touch the data at all
    (this is why you can recover it later). This is a much quicker operation
    than a full format.

    I've never low-level formatted a memory card, and would normally avoid
    doing so for exactly the reason you suggest. There would never be need
    for a low-level format in normal circumstances - only if perhaps you
    wanted to really erase the information content, or perhaps to check out a
    card (or disk) with failing sectors.

    David J Taylor, Feb 25, 2006
  20. Toomanyputters

    ASAAR Guest

    I agree, but if one isn't sure that a quick or full format is
    being performed, a good check would be to find out the write speed
    of the camera ('s reviews are one source) and then to
    time the camera's format operation. For example, if a camera has a
    2MB/sec write speed, formatting a 2GB card should take more than
    1000 seconds, something in the 17 to 20 minute range. If such a
    card can be formatted in a minute or two it's obviously not getting
    a "full" format.

    Some people in the ng have reported that using a computer to
    format a card with a file system incompatible with the camera
    sometimes results in the card being totally unusable by the camera.
    In a few of these reported cases the camera couldn't even reformat
    the card. Given that (if true), I'd think that a low level format
    would be even riskier, as it would wipe out *everything* on the
    card, not just the FAT volume, but the partition table as well. In
    such a case it would be safer to first format the card in the
    camera, and then fill it with uniformly sized files (1MB or 2MB
    would be a good choice) having precalculated CRCs or MD5 checksums,
    then see if they can be read back without error. If any errors are
    found they could be easily dealt with.
    ASAAR, Feb 25, 2006
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