Does Spinrite work on SD cards?

  • SpinRite v6.1 Release #3
    Guest:
    The 3rd release of SpinRite v6.1 is published and may be obtained by all SpinRite v6.0 owners at the SpinRite v6.1 Pre-Release page. (SpinRite will shortly be officially updated to v6.1 so this page will be renamed.) The primary new feature, and the reason for this release, was the discovery of memory problems in some systems that were affecting SpinRite's operation. So SpinRite now incorporates a built-in test of the system's memory. For the full story, please see this page in the "Pre-Release Announcements & Feedback" forum.
    /Steve.
  • Be sure to checkout “Tips & Tricks”
    Dear Guest Visitor → Once you register and log-in please checkout the “Tips & Tricks” page for some very handy tips!

    /Steve.
  • BootAble – FreeDOS boot testing freeware

    To obtain direct, low-level access to a system's mass storage drives, SpinRite runs under a GRC-customized version of FreeDOS which has been modified to add compatibility with all file systems. In order to run SpinRite it must first be possible to boot FreeDOS.

    GRC's “BootAble” freeware allows anyone to easily create BIOS-bootable media in order to workout and confirm the details of getting a machine to boot FreeDOS through a BIOS. Once the means of doing that has been determined, the media created by SpinRite can be booted and run in the same way.

    The participants here, who have taken the time to share their knowledge and experience, their successes and some frustrations with booting their computers into FreeDOS, have created a valuable knowledgebase which will benefit everyone who follows.

    You may click on the image to the right to obtain your own copy of BootAble. Then use the knowledge and experience documented here to boot your computer(s) into FreeDOS. And please do not hesitate to ask questions – nowhere else can better answers be found.

    (You may permanently close this reminder with the 'X' in the upper right.)

jedimasterspaz

New member
Jan 1, 2023
2
1
I have a Dell XPS desktop that has 4 built-in SD card readers on the top front. I see it in Windows, and Valide Drive sees and says it's OK.
When I boot my Spinrite USB flash drive, Spinrite doesn't see it.
I thought those SD card readers were USB. Should I get a USB card reader?

Thanks, Mark
 
I thought those SD card readers were USB. Should I get a USB card reader?
SD cards (at the hardware level) are quite a mess. And since there's never been any standardization at the PCI bus register level there's nothing for SpinRite to support. IF a machine's BIOS supports its own SD cards then SpinRite should, too. But since your SD card is not showing up, it's likely that your machine's hardware needs support from a machine-specific driver... which I doubt SpinRite will ever offer.

So, yes, the right solution would be to use an SD card to USB adapter to make those SD cards visible. During SpinRite's testing we fussed around with SD card adapters and we generally had success. (y)
 
Did you insert the SD card before booting into FreeDOS? That's required for SpinRite to have any chance of seeing it.
 
I can see my SD card in spinrite. Just get an SD (or microSD if that's what you have) to USB adapter. But then it might still depend on how the machine sees the USB device. Here's what I got, and it worked absolutely fine with a 128GB microSD card as well: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00JU9ET90
EDIT: Here's one for full sized SD cards: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07RGR7DDL
EDIT2: Actually I guess that reader supports both micro and full SD: "SD, Micro SD, M2, and MS slots"
 
If you can see your SD Card in SpinRite then it should work. This would mean that the machine's BIOS provides SD card support. But that may not be common. So, as @0x6A7232 said, an SD card to USB interface will almost certainly work. During development, Colby (who replied up-thread) and others used a number of SD card interfaces with success. (y)