How To Check Health of an SD Card on Windows and Mac


SD cards have increasingly become common. Their usage is however more common in tablets, smartphones, and cameras. If you use SD on cameras, then it is one of the best experiences to be able to save photos and videos on the go with SD cards of whatever type or size.

However, just like hard drives, SD cards also come with a host of challenges. These challenges include but are not limited to disk failure, unrecognizable, corrupt files, etc. That is why you need to check the health of your SD card constantly. 

This article puts shades on how to check health of an SD card so that you can easily perform a DIY health check for all your SD cards without compromising your data security. In case your card is already corrupted here’s how you can still recover corrupted SD card.

Health Checking Challenges for SD Cards

There are many possible challenges people face when trying to perform a health check for an SD card, regardless of the platform: Windows or Mac.

So to help you achieve this there are many tools you can use including data recovery software to troubleshoot data recovery issues. We will come to the tools a bit later but let’s discuss the challenges.

1. Compatibility 

It is true that some SD cards do not work on all devices. This will most likely affect the actions that are designed to help check their health.

For instance, some of these cards do not work on some cameras and even some laptops. As a result, you have only a few options left in terms of the devices that can be used to check their health.

2. Data retention issues

In most cases, storage devices are specifically designed to retain data over extended periods. Nevertheless, these devices can, on occasion, experience data loss owing to a range of factors, including their exposure to intense magnetic fields.

This susceptibility to data loss, while relatively rare, underscores the importance of safeguarding your valuable information through adequate backup and protection measures.

3. Physical damage

When an SD card is mishandled, it becomes more susceptible to physical damage, primarily in the form of accidental drops or impacts. Additionally, exposure to moisture, rain, or adverse weather conditions can lead to rapid deterioration and impairment of the SD card’s functionality.

In such instances, the SD card may become considerably more challenging to utilize, emphasizing the importance of careful handling and protection against environmental hazards to ensure its longevity and reliability.

4. False positive

This is another form of challenge SD cards face. Some of the tools used to check for errors in SD cards may end up with false positive reports. If by this error they report issues that do not exist or that are generally erroneous, then it becomes more challenging to even repair them.

But you do not need to worry if you have backed up your data on a different volume. However, if you have not, follow the procedure below. 

How to Check SD Card Errors on Windows

Step 1: Insert the SD card into your PC. You can choose to do this using a card reader or an SD card adapter connected to your PC. Launch the File Explorer and click on “This PC.” 

Step 2: Move to the “Devices and drives” section” to locate the drive letter. The letter may vary depending on the computer you are using. Right-click on the SD card then choose “Properties

Step 3: Tap on the “Tools” icon and locate “Check” available under “Error checking.” Tap on it and choose “Scan and repair” when a new window appears. The process may take a few minutes but you have to wait for it to complete. 

Depending on the size of your SD card or the size of its content, the process may delay or finish faster. When scanning is finished you will obviously be notified. This should be so even if more daring issues are found including SD card corruption on Mac. The message which is displayed should indicate if any errors were found, and also if they were fixed.

How To Check Health of an SD Card On a Mac

While on Mac, you can check the health status of your SD card with First Aid and even implement a repair. To check the health status of SD cards on Mac, you will require disk utility. You can access the disk utility by opening “Finder” followed by “Applications.”

Connect the SD card to the Mac then choose the drive with the SD card’s name on disk utility. Once this is done, select “First Aid” to scan the volume and repair any problems found. 

How to check SD card health on Windows with Properties

If you are using a Windows computer, you can check the health of your SD card using the “Properties” tool.

  1. First, you need to plug the SD card into the PC and then launch “My Computer.”
  2. Once there, right-click the SD card you need to check then choose “Properties.”
  3. On the window that pops up, click “Tools” and then tap “Check” to scan the volume for errors.
  4. The process is quick and should not take much time. However, it depends on the size of the volume and the number of errors available.

How to Check SD Health on Windows with CHKDSK 

If you are not able to check for the SD card’s health on Windows using “Properties,” you can still try this with the CHKDSK command. Besides, the command offers you the advantage of fixing errors and even bad sectors. 

To proceed, open the command prompt by pressing the “Win + R” keys. Type the cmd command “CHKDSK E:/f/r/x” replacing “E” with the SD card letter then hit “Enter.”

How to Check SD Card with MBR

If your SD card has many problems, you can still check for its health with MBR. The command is highly robust and can access every detail of your SD card. 

To proceed, press “Win + R” keys followed by each of the following commands; 

  • Bootrec/scanos
  • Boot rec/fixmbr
  • Bootrec/fix boot
  • Bootrec/rebuildbcd
  • Wait for the process to end.

Tools to check health of an SD card on Windows

Checking the health of an SD card is as important as data recovery. You however need to do it before you can restore the SD card on Windows and Mac. Below are some of the tools to use.

  • H2testw
  • CrystalDiskInfo
  • Check Flash

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Rupam Bharali

I am Rupam, a Computer Application graduate with a passion for gadgets and technology. GameSpec is a platform I created to share my knowledge on gadgets and software tutorials. On this site, you can find helpful troubleshooting guides to assist you in solving common problems with software and gadgets.
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