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Old Jan 10, 2009, 12:21 PM   #1
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When you do a quick format, then run a data recovery software, all the pictures are still recoverable.

From time to time, I'll have accidental erasures and corruption, so I run full format using SD formatter once in a while, so that when I actually have to do recovery, I won't have to look for a needle in a hay stack by siftomg through a pile of photos I intended to delete.

I'm sure CD-RW discs aren't all that common these days. When they came out, they boasted a usable life in 1,000s of cycles, when I actually ran a test on them involving making a full write, formatting, making a full write again and I was able to cause them to degrade to a point of actually reducing read speed and increasing error rate at well under 50 cycles.

Are SD cards plagued with same fate?
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Old Jan 10, 2009, 12:50 PM   #2
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Most cameras have a formatting procedure somewhere in their menu structure, but it is usually not a low level format. To my knowledge, only Canon has a low-level format available from within the camera. SD Formatter, from the SD Card Association, performs a low-level format of an SD Card while it is plugged into a Windows computer. But after doing a low level format using SD Formatter, you should still format the SD Card using the format procedure in the camera, so it can create the folder structure it will use when you start taking photographs.

SD Cards (and all flash memory devices)do, in fact, have a finite number of times they can be written to, but it is in the millions. But nothing you can do will get closer to that limit faster than repeatedly performing low-level formats (much like repeatedly filling and erasing a CD-RW.) You might want to limit your use of SD Formatter to when you really need it.
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