Windows wont open usb drives / sd cards any more, keeps telling me to format them :(


Well-Known Member
Can anyone please help, up until recently my laptop was fine and i know ive opened files up a few weeks ago, now my laptop isn't opening anything i attach.

i have a card reader, every time i put my sd card in my laptop says i need to format this drive, and when i try to it says windows is unable to format it. I have just got a new camera and was about to throw the card away thinking it was bust and then thought i will try a few other cards as well as a usb stick, and they are all saying the same thing.

i have tried going through disk management and deleting the partition then trying to make it again thinking or may have been that originally, it says it does it all but when i get to the formatting it then says it cant.

the drive is visible in my computer but shows as no space, and when i try and go into it, it just tells me to format it.

the card does work fine in the camera as well.

Can anyone help my fix this?



Have you tried those devices on another PC just to confirm that they do in fact work correctly?


Well-Known Member
unfortunately i dont have a 2nd computer here, although i cant imagine all my devices have stopped working at the same time?


Noob Whisperer
Your topic title indicates SD cards as well as USB drives.
Is your card reader built into your laptop or is it also an external USB device?
Sometimes an intentional or unintentional (windows update) driver update can cause such a problem.
And in those cases you might be able to roll back the driver using Device Manager's properties page / driver tab for that particular device.
Failing that it might be a better option to check with your Laptop manufacturer's website / support page and download and reinstall those specific drivers from there and see if that helps with the issue.
It is often the case that hardware devices that are incorporated into laptop computers require drivers issued by that manufacturer and device drivers from other resources may not perform optimally.


Well-Known Member
Lol i have sorted it, can't believe what it was tbh, i was trying all kinda and nothing was working, i then restarted my laptop, i hadn't previously because i had downloads still running.
anyway i did notice when restarting it said installing x amount of updates, when my laptop booted back up everything was back to normal.

I usually think im ok at sorting most problems but this one shouldn't have made me have to ask on here lol

thanks anyway



Noob Whisperer
I'm glad you did James.
Everyone can benefit, even from some easy ones now and again.

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