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How to Repair & Recover a Corrupted SD Card on Mac

Updated on Friday, June 14, 2024

iBoysoft author Rivers Wong

Written by

Rivers Wong
Professional tech editor

Approved by

Jessica Shee


Summary: In this article from iBoysoft, it provides thorough instructions on how to fix & recover a corrupted SD card on Mac. Also, you'll find out both signs and reasons for the SD card corruption here. Common questions about corrupted SD cards are answered.

how to recover a corrupted SD card on Mac

In terms of storage devices, Secure Digital cards, also known as SD cards, are becoming increasingly popular nowadays because of their portability and large storage capacity. They are widely used in various mobile devices, like digital cameras.

But like other external storage devices, they can get corrupted over time. And a corrupted Android SD card or SD card used for other purposes usually means that your saved data is on the verge of losing. If you are facing this problem, don't worry. In this article, we'll show you how to repair & recover a corrupted SD card on Mac, and help you restore your valuable files.

How do I know if my SD card is corrupted?

SD cards are fantastic when they work properly. However, this is not always the case. Here are some common indicators that your SD card has become corrupted. If you notice any of the following issues happen to your device, then you might have a corrupted SD card.

  • The SD card is not showing up on Mac, or your Mac won't read SD card.
  • The SD card is not showing files on Mac.
  • Some of the SD card files are missing or you notice strange file names on the card.
  • Strange error messages pops up after connecting the card to your Mac. 
  • A black screen on your digital camera, and you can't take any photos with it.
  • You encounter read or write failures when using the memory card. For example, you can't make any changes to the card or it turns into an unreadable SD card on Mac.

If your SD card is experiencing any of the above signs of corruption, it's highly recommended that you should stop using it immediately. Especially do not add any new information to the corrupted SD card.

In this situation, you should first recover files from corrupted SD card on Mac, and make sure your precious data remains safe and sound. Then, you can fix/repair the corrupted SD card on Mac with the solutions given in this post.

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How to recover files from a corrupted SD card on Mac?

The most effective and easiest way to perform corrupted SD card recovery on Mac is to use third-party SD card recovery software. Though sometimes data stored on a corrupted SD card remain inaccessible, with the sophisticated scanning algorithms employed by this kind of program, you can still get your data off from the faulty card.

Here, we recommend using iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac to recover files from your corrupted SD card on Mac. iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac is a reliable and effective SD card recovery tool that can help users to restore 1000+ types of files from corrupted SD cards and micro SD cards, including images, videos, documents, audio, archives, and other files.

In addition to SD card data recovery, it supports recover deleted or lost files from APFS, HFS, HFS+exFAT, and FAT 32 formatted SD cards. Moreover, iBoysoft is compatible with macOS 13 Ventura, macOS 12 Monterey, macOS 11 Big Sur, macOS 10.15 Catalina, macOS 10.14 Mojave, macOS 10.13 High Sierra, macOS 10.12 Sierra, and Mac OS X 10.11 El Capitan. And you can use it on both Intel-based and Apple Silicon Macs.

Here's how to recover lost files from SD card on Mac freely using iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac:

  1. Free download and follow the on-screen instructions to install iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac on your Mac computer. Then launch this program.
  2. Properly connect the corrupted SD card to your Mac by using the built-in or external SD card reader, or an SD card adapter for Mac if necessary.
  3. Select your corrupted SD card in the main interface of iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac, and click Search for Lost Data, then this software will start to scan for lost SD card files.recover files from a corrupted SD card using iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac
  4. Wait patiently until the whole scan process is completed. All found files will be listed, select files that you want to restore, and click Preview to check if they are corrupted.preview recoverable files on the corrupted SD card
  5. Select wanted files by ticking the checkboxes next to them, then click the Recover button to get lost or deleted SD card files back. Note that do not save recovered data to your corrupted SD card, it may overwrite recoverable files and cause data loss. Either save them to your Mac's internal disk or another external storage media.recover files from the corrupted SD card with iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac

After recovering data from SD card on Mac, you can now follow the solutions below to fix corrupted SD card on Mac. But for those physically damaged SD cards, you'd better seek help from a professional data recovery center or a data recovery service. In addition, if your files are at risk of being lost due to other SD card corruption errors, you can retrieve them with iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac!

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How to fix or repair a corrupted SD card on Mac?

fix a corrupted SD card on Mac

Sometimes, an SD card wouldn't even show up on your Mac computer and appear to be corrupted due to improper connection. So, here's what you can do to make sure your Mac can recognize the card:

  • Restart your Mac and reinsert your SD card into it.
  • Try a different SD card reader or SD card adapter.
  • Make sure the SD card ports on your Mac are clean.

If your SD card is truly corrupted and you are sure about is nothing to do with the connection, you can try the following solutions one by one to fix the corrupted SD card on Mac.

Solution 1: Fix a corrupted SD card on Mac via Disk Utility

File system errors may lead to a corrupted SD card. In this case, you can try to use the Mac Disk Utility app to repair your corrupted SD card on Mac. Disk Utility is a built-in tool that comes with macOS, which is able to fix some minor errors on the card.

Here's how to fix a corrupted SD card with Mac Disk Utility:

  1. Connect the corrupted SD card to your Mac computer.
  2. Open Disk Utility, you can find it by navigating to Mac Launchpad > Other.
  3. Click the View button at the top in the Disk Utility window, and make sure the Show All Devices option is checked.
  4. Select your corrupted SD card from the left sidebar, then click First Aid at the top of the window. Then click Run. Now Disk Utility starts to repair your memory card.fix a corrupted SD card on Mac with Disk Utility
  5. When the process is completed, click Done, then try to access the files stored on your SD card, and check if it is fixed.

If Disk Utility can repair your corrupted SD card, then you will be able to access the card on your Mac computer. If unfortunately, Disk Utility fails, move on to the next solution.

Solution 2: Repair a corrupted SD card on Mac using Terminal

If after running First Aid and your SD card still show signs of corruption, you can use Mac Terminal (a command line tool)to check for possible errors. But this method is a little bit complicated because it would resort to command lines, so be careful when following the steps below.

Here's how to check and repair SD card on Mac using Terminal:

  1. Make sure your corrupted SD card is connected to the Mac device.
  2. Launch Terminal on your Mac (simply press the Command + Space bar keys, type terminal then hit Return).
  3. Type the following command in Terminal, then hit Return. Write down and remember your corrupted SD card's identifier.diskutil listfix a corrupted SD card on Mac using Terminal
  4. Copy and paste this command line in Terminal, then hit Return. Replace [identifier] with the identifier you just wrote down. This command will run for a while, when it is finished, check the results and see if your SD card is corrupted.diskutil verifyVolume [identifier]
  5. If it is corrupted, you can try to repair it by running this command in the Terminal. Again, remember to replace [identifier] with your corrupted SD card's identifier.diskutil repairvolume [identifier]

After repairing the SD card with Terminal, check if it is still corrupted.

Solution 3: Fix a corrupted SD card on Mac by formatting

If you tried all the above solutions but still, the corrupted SD card won't be fixed, then your best shot is to format SD card on Mac. As you may know that all files would be erased from a formatted SD card, so make sure you've restored lost files from it using data recovery software, like iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac.

Here's how to format a corrupted SD card on Mac:

  1. Connect the corrupted SD card to your Mac, then launch Disk Utility.
  2. Select the SD card from the left panel, then click the Erase button.
  3. Name the SD card, choose the desired format, then click Erase to confirm formatting.fix a corrupted SD card on Mac by formatting

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Possible reasons for SD card corruption

SD won't become corrupted inexplicably. Here, we list some common causes that might lead to SD corruption, let's check them out:

  • The file system of the SD card is corrupted.
  • Interruption during read/write/format process.
  • Improper removal of the SD card.
  • Bad sectors on your SD card.
  • Natural aging.
  • Malware and viruses.

When the SD card turns corrupted, all your valuable data stored on it might remain inaccessible. In this situation, you can use iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac to get your data back.

Bottom line

In this article, we tell you how to fix & recover corrupted SD card on Mac. Also, explain the possible signs and reasons for SD card corruption.  Again, using iBoysoft Data Recovery for Mac to recover data from your corrupted SD card is highly recommended. Hope you can fix your corrupted SD card by reading this post! 

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