Card corrupted – happens to the best of us…

Memory card corruptedAs a photography instructor I try to be a good role model when it comes to things like photo organization, backing up my photos and taking care of my equipment.  I do try  – honest I do, but last night I lapsed.  I am constantly telling students that they must properly eject their memory card from their card reader before pulling it out when they are downloading their pictures.  If you are on a Mac this means “ejecting the disk” and if you are on a PC you need to “Safely Remove Hardware” the icon for which will most likely be found at the bottom menu bar depending on which operating system you are using.

Did you know you are supposed to do this?  It is crucial that you do as there is a very good reason for it.  If you remove your card without doing the above there is a chance that you can corrupt your card and loose your images on there.  Late last night I was trying to upload my Easter pics as well as a bunch for my #Take 52 Challenge that I haven’t posted yet and in my sleep deprived blur I inadvertently pulled out the memory card from the reader without ejecting it first.  I thought that I had inserted the wrong card so I was quickly about to change it over but midway I realized that it was in fact the correct card and a horrible sinking feeling was accompanied by an error message on my computer screen telling me that my card needed to be formatted.  Ugh.  Teacher FAIL –   Rookie mistake!

So I spent a few hours this morning trying to recover the lost images by downloading various software and running recovery programs but alas no joy.  I am totally bummed.  Being Easter both my girls were looking as cute as could be in their Easter dresses and for once were cooperating on getting their picture taken.  I also had a bunch taken of the whole family when we got together in the afternoon.  All gone bar a few like the one of my niece above on the swing.  I will just have to try and recreate and thankfully I can.  I realize this happens to many of you when you can’t go back and do a do-over.

So folks – be warned!  Do not pull out your memory card from your card reader without first ejecting it and while I’m at it, don’t take your card out of your camera without first turning it off either.

I will spend some more time trying to recover the card when I get a chance.  If this has happened to you, there are some free card recovery programs avalable.  Nothing there helped me unfortunately so it looks like we’ll all be getting dressed up again soon…

Has this ever happened to you?  Please share in the comments below and make me feel a little better.





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Yukon Binoculars - April 11, 2012

Nice advice. I always take precautions in doing such things because I don’t want to loss or corrupt my data.

Dee - April 22, 2012

sorry to hear about your photos. I’ve just signed up for your blog and 52 week challenge. This was a most interesting first read as I’ve never ejected before pulling my card fromm my pc, but will definitely be doing so in the future. Looking forward to following your blog as well as the challenge.

Melanie - April 26, 2012

Hi Ingrid, it’s been a while since I stopped in to read your blog, but I still post every week in the group (one of the few). I am a complete techo-idiot, I pulled a card out of my laptop shortly after I purchased my computer not knowing I couldn’t do that and lost it all. It was one of those learning errors that you don’t make twice! I’ve now trained myself to take a deep breath while I scan all the little icons at the bottom to make certain I’ve turned everything off and ejected things, including my mouse! I do need to thank you for posting this though, it’s nice to read about someone well-seasoned making mistakes and admitting it, it helps those of us who make them in spades feel better!

Ingrid - May 2, 2012

Sorry that you had to learn the hard way Melanie. It always pays to slow down when we are doing techy stuff. The world just expects us all to move too fast and that’s usually when mistakes happen. Great tip!

Reina - May 8, 2012

This has happened to me before and I just left the SD card alone for a while (a couple of days, I think). Once I put the card back into my computer, the pictures were restored. Good luck!

rohit kothari@click kudos - May 9, 2012

yep its really a irritating thing when we card get corrupt after lots of hard work happen with me now i take to much care of my card

andrew - May 15, 2012

I made it a habit not to pull any memory card from a PC without clicking the eject button first. I can imagine how it feels.

Ingrid - June 25, 2012

Andrew I was just really glad it wasn’t very important stuff. A tough lesson…

Darren Leary - March 9, 2013

Just did it for the not the first time but the first time I lost video files. I’m sick to my stomach right now. And for the kicker, it wasn’t my project, it was my brother-in-law’s client I was helping him for. I have no karma coming my way, I always help people out and try to do the right thing. Its BS, so sad 🙁

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