Saturday, 20 September 2014

Format an SD Card FAT 16 on OSX

Note that  formatting the card will rename it: NONAME.

1.) Insert the SD card into the reader. 

2.) Open Disk Utility.

3.) Select the SD card by clicking on it.

4.) Right click the SD card and choose: Unmount
The card name will become greyed out.

5.) Open a Terminal window.

6.) Type: diskutil list
This command gives information on all connected devices. The relevant information in this instance is the path to the [SD card] device and it's name. In the example below the path is: dev/disk3 and the name (identifier) is: disk3s1. Note that the actual card 'name' in this example is, "TMP_NAME_SD1".

7.) To format the SD card, type:

newfs_msdos -F 16 (path to the SD card device) / (SD card device name)

In this example:

newfs_msdos -F 16 /dev/disk3s1

*Note the underscore in the command is necessary.

If the command is successful it will return something similar to this...

8.) In Disk Utility, right click the card and choose: Mount
The card will now be shown as: Format: MS-DOS(FAT16) The card is name is: NO NAME  



Command returns: Permission denied.
  • Is the card right protected? Check switch on side of card.
  • Do you have the required permissions? Type: sudo -s to get a full root shell.
 Command returns: Resource busy.
  • Is the SD card mounted? Unmount in Disk Utility as documented above.

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