[Answered] Does Formatting SD Card Delete Everything?

Does formatting SD card delete everything? Find answers to this question and recover data from formatted SD cards via data recovery software. You can also get disk formatting tips.


By Penny / Updated on April 3, 2024

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What does format SD card mean?

Formatting refers to the process of refreshing the file system utilized by your SD card. Essentially, it acts as a reset for the SD card, effectively resolving various issues.

So does formatting a SD card delete everything? Obviously, formatting will inevitably delete all the existing data on your SD card.

Please get an overview of two types of disk formatting: Quick Format VS Full Format.


Quick Format

Full Format


delete all files from a disk and generate a new file system for future use 

make the deleted space as free space for new data  

wipe out all the existing data

rewrite each sector of the drive

rebuild the file system, volume label, cluster size

scan disk bad sectors


save time

scan disk errors

it’s relatively easy to recover data

scan and fix detected disk errors

improve computer performance


cannot fix disk errors

not suitable for SSD drives


Does Quick Format delete files? As shown in the above table, quick format only deletes the existing data and builds a new file system.

If your formatted SD data has not been overwritten by new files, it’s possible to recover data from SD cards after a quick format. On the other hand, if you perform a full format, your SD card data could be overwritten and irreversible.

Useful tips to improve chances of SD card data recovery

If you find yourself unfortunate enough to encounter data loss, please refer to the following tips to maximize the likelihood of successful data recovery.

Stop using the SD card: Every action performed on the SD card carries the risk of overwriting your data. At present, your data remains susceptible to being overwritten with new data, rendering your original data essentially unrecoverable.
Save retrieved data to another drive: It is essential to avoid recovering data from the SD card being used for the recovery process. Doing so not only increases the likelihood of overwriting the data you are trying to retrieve but also introduces the possibility of data corruption, further diminishing the chances of SD card recovery.
Create a disk backup of your SD card: If possible, create a byte-to-byte copy of the SD card and begin the data recovery process on the copied file instead. Restoring files from backups ensures the preservation of the original SD card, minimizing the potential for critical errors.

Adhering to these recommendations, particularly recovering from a copy of your SD card, can significantly contribute to the successful retrieval of your data.

Can you recover data from SD card after format?

So can you recover data from SD card after formatting without backups?

Since not all users possess the prudence and foresight to make regular backups, the most time-saving and efficient way is to use professional SD card recovery software.

MyRecover is your second-to-none choice among all the eligible software because it is designed to recover data from formatted local hard drives like SD cards.

Meanwhile, you can also use it to recover deleted & missing files from Sony, Sandisk, Kingston, Gigastone, and other brands of SD cards.

Highlights of MyRecover:
  • All-inclusive: Deal with disk formatting, deletion, system crashes, virus attacks, etc.  
  • High-efficiency: Recover MS Office files, WPS files, folders, compressed files, audio, songs, images, videos, and websites, etc.
  • Advanced scanning method: MyRecover runs Quick Scan & Deep Scan automatically to search all the recoverable files. Specify the filename, saved path, date, or size to filter your needed files.
  • Convenience: Retain the original filename, path, and format for the deleted files.
  • Excellent compatibility: Support NTFS, FAT32, exFAT, and ReFS file systems and work with Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, or Server PC.
Download Software Windows 11/10/8/7/Server
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After data recovery, please save your retrieved files in a new path instead of the original formatted SD card.
If you only need to recover one file within 500 MB, you don’t have to pay for it because MyRecover can enable users to recover 500MB files freely.
If you want to recover a large number of deleted files from SD cards, internal and external HDDs, SSDs, or USBs, upgrading MyRecover might be a more money-saving choice.

Step 1. Connect the SD card to your Windows > install and run MyRecover > hover the mouse over the SD card saved deleted files before, and click Scan.


Step 2. MyRecover will automatically scan your SD card and detect all the recoverable files.

You can preview/filter specific files according to Name, Documents Type, Path, or Date.

  • Name: Type the relevant filenames in the search bar to quickly locate your desired deleted/lost files.
  • Date modified: Set a customized date (today, yesterday, last 7 or 30 days, etc.)
  • Size: Filter the file size (<128KB, 128KB~1MB, 1MB~512MB, etc.)


Step 3. Under the Other Missing Files folder, select your wanted files and click the “Recover x files” button.


FQ&A about disk formatting & data loss prevention tips

What does format mean on a SD card? Does formatting SD card delete everything? Can you recover data from SD card after formatting? If you’re bothered by these issues, you can find the specific answers in the corresponding part.

In addition, there’re relevant tips about disk formatting and data loss prevention measures.

Penny · Editor
Penny works as an editor at AOMEI Technology, while she's a tester and editor for AOMEI Data Recovery Tools. She enjoys helping users with data recovery issues on Windows and iPhones using simple and practical solutions. Outside of work, she has a strong affection for pets, particularly giant pandas.