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  1. #1

    Format of SD memory fails


    I have numerous SD memory cards. These have been formatted on a Windows Vista machine originally with no problems (other than all uppercase labels!) I have also formatted them on this hardware while running Windows 8, again, with no problems.

    On this Linux Debian 6.0.6 system when I attempt to do so, I get errors that usually indicate I can not write to the device. The SD devices are in a read/writer that is wired (internally) to an unused USB header. I am able to use the hardware under Windows 8, so I'm confident that the hardware is working.

    When I use Linux "System Tools>Disk Utility" program, on a 4 GB SD card, I can change the name of the label and the format to ext2. When I attempt to actually format the device and apply the changes, it errors out with

    Error creating file system: helper exited with exit code 1: 5738: error writing 131072 bytes: Operation not permitted
    If I go to the top of the GUI, I can attempt to format for a "Master Boot Record" type. When I attempt it, I get

    Error creating partition table: helper exited with exit code 1: cannot open /dev/sdd: Read-only file system
    I've checked the write protect and it is where I formatted it on a Windows machine. Any ideas?

    When I try the same operation on a 32 G USB stick. At completion it shows a partition type of "W95 FAT32 (LBA) (0x0c)" is this correct for Linux?

    Please remember that I've been trying this for a while and just can't get it to work no matter what program I use to do it. I've tried gparted and fdisk also with similar results. It always seems to say I can't write to the device. I did remember to un mount the device, but have tried it both ways with the same type results (although it usually says it's mounted).

    Thanks for all the help, I'm expecting!!!


  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2004
    arch linux

    I've always had much better results formatting devices using gparted under a liveCD such as the Parted Magic LiveCD, or the Gparted LiveCD. If you haven't tried that route, it might be worth testing it to see if you get better results.

  3. #3
    file format - Memory stick not formatting? - Ask Ubuntu

    [SOLVED] How to force format a USB device? - Ubuntu Forums

    Though I like Oz keep a gparted and parted magic cd around for stubborn problems. Sometimes I just find it is quicker to just boot a live cd and just get the job done than try and figure out a problem.
    I can then approach the problem later at my leisure. Good luck with it.
    I refuse to let fear and fear of others rule my life. It puts my humanity at risk.
    Accepting Death is the only way to stay alive.

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  5. #4
    Linux User zenwalker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Inland Empire
    SystemRescueCD and what oz said -- for better results!
    "All that is required for evil to triumph is for a good human to say nothing"
    _______________________________________________| Salix, Puppy & antiX

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