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How to format a MicroSD card on Windows 10

A MicroSD card belongs on small devices like phones or tablets. These devices normally do not have space for an SD card given that the device needs to be a certain size and still pack a lot of hardware.

Outside of phones, tablets, and cameras, you won’t find a lot of devices that can read and write directly to a MicroSD card. The reason simply being that they do not have a slot small enough for it. 

On devices that do have a slot for a MicroSD card, there is rarely an option to format it. 

Format MicroSD Card on Windows 10

If you want to format a MicroSD card on Windows 10, you can however, you may have to purchase additional hardware i.e., an adapter that will allow you to connect the card to your PC.

If your Windows 10 system has a slot for an SD card though, you can buy a MicroSD card adapter. It’s cheap, and it often comes bundled with MicroSD cards.

You can format a MicroSD card from the Disk Management tool on Windows 10 which offers a simple GUI, you can format it from File Explorer, or you can use the Diskpart tool which is a command-line tool.

Note: Formatting will ERASE ALL DATA on the card. 

1. Format MicroSD card via Disk Management

  1. Connect the MicroSD card to your system via an adapter.
  2. Tap the Win+R keyboard shortcut to open the run box.
  3. In the run box enter diskmgmt.msc and tap Enter.
  4. The MicroSD card will be listed in the bottom half of the app.
  5. Right-click a volume/drive or the entire disk, and select Format.
  6. Select a file system, and make other changes as necessary.

2. Format MicroSD Card via File Explorer

  1. Connect the MicroSD card to your system via an adapter.
  2. Open File Explorer.
  3. Go to This PC.
  4. The MicroSD card will be listed under Devices and drives.
  5. Right-click the MicroSD card, and select Format from the context menu.
  6. Choose between full format and quick format, select a file system, and click Start.

3. Format MicroSD card via Diskpart

  1. Connect the MicroSD card to your system via an adapter.
  2. Open Command Prompt with admin rights.
  3. Enter diskpart and tap Enter.
  4. A new Command Prompt window will open. Switch over to it.
  5. Run this command to list all connected disks: list disk
  6. Take note of the disk number of the MicroSD card.
  7. Run this command to select the MicroSD card: select disk no. Replace ‘no’ with the number given to the MicroSD card.

  1. Run this command to list volumes: list volume.
  2. Take note of the volume number of the MicroSD card.
  3. Select the volume with this command: select volume no. Replace ‘no’ with the number of the MicroSD card’s volume.
  4. Run the following command to format the volume/card;
    • To format on FAT32 file system: format fs=fat32
    • To format on the NTFS file system: format fs=NTFS
    • To format on the exFAT file system: format fs=exFAT
  5. To perform a quick format, add ‘quick’ at the end of the previous command. For example: format fs=fat32 quick.

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