Free SD Card Recovery Software

Have you lost or accidentally deleted files from your SD card? Don’t despair! In this article, we explain how you can get them back in a matter of minutes using a free SD card recovery software application.
sd card recovery

Recover From Any Data Loss Scenario

Disk Drill: Powerful SD Card Recovery Software

Disk Drill is a free SD card repair tool that delivers powerful features in a sleek package, allowing anyone to quickly and easily restore lost or accidentally deleted data. Here are just a few highlights of what makes it so great:

  • Recover up to 500 MB of data for free and preview an unlimited number of files.
  • Support for hundreds of file formats (image, video, audio, document, and more).
  • Compatible with all memory card types, including SD, CF, and xD.
  • Ability to perform RAW SD card recovery.
  • Built-in data protection capabilities.
  • Intuitive user interface and one-click approach to data recovery.
sd card recovery
Truly free! Disk Drill doesn’t make empty promises. You really don’t have to spend any money to recover deleted files form an SD card, and the free version of this powerful software application uses the same state-of-the-art data recovery algorithms as Disk Drill PRO.

Supports All Memory Cards

Disk Drill is an exceptionally versatile recovery software application because it supports all types of memory cards. Besides memory cards, Disk Drill can also recover data from traditional hard drives, modern SSDs, USB flash drives, and all other storage devices recognized by Windows.
  • Secure Digital(SD, SDHC, SDXC)
    Secure Digital
    (SD, SDHC, SDXC)
    Standard size SD, miniSD, microSD
  • CompactFlash (CF)
    Type I and Type II
  • Extreme Digital Picture Card (xD)
    Extreme Digital Picture Card (xD)
    Type M/M+ and Type H
As well as all other types and formats of SD cards from any manufacturer (Kingston®, Transcend®, Lexar®, SanDisk®, PNY®, Samsung® & others).

Can Recover Any File Format

In addition to extensive storage device compatibility, Disk Drill boasts the ability to recover hundreds of file formats, including all commonly used image, video, and document formats. It doesn’t matter if you’ve used your memory card to store photos taken with your digital camera or to extend the storage capacity of your smartphone, Disk Drill can help you recover deleted photos as well as all other files stored on your SD card.
  • Images
    JPG/JPEG, PNG (Portable Network Graphic), BMP, TIFF (Tagged Image File Format), GIF, EPS, PSD, AI (Adobe Illustrator), SVG, INDD

    DJVU, TGA, PGM, DNG, HEIC, WMF, APM, DPX, JNB, JPG, KEY, WEBP, PCX, MPO, AFPHOTO, ALBM, ANI, DXF. Fujifilm: RAF. GoPro: GPR. Leica/Panasonic: RW2, RAW, RWL. Sony: ARW, SRF, SR2. Samsung: SRW. Canon: CR2, CR3. Epson: ERF. Kodak: DCR, KDC. Nikon: NEF, NRW. Olympus: ORF. After Effects Project: AEP. CorelDRAW: CDR. Windows Icon: ICO. ArchiCAD Project: PLA, PLN, TPL. SketchUp: SKP. Visio Drawing file: VSD and more

  • Video
    AVI, MOV (Apple QuickTime movie), MP4 (MPEG-4 video), 3G2, FLV (Matroska Video), MPG, RM (RealMedia), WMV, AAF, M4V

    3GPP2 / 3GP / 3GPP (Videos for 3G UMTS services), CRM (Canon raw movie file), DIR (Adobe Director Movie), DV (Digital Video), DXR (Protected Adobe Director Movie), FCP (Final Cut Pro), FLA (Editable Adobe Flash movie), MPA (MPEG-2 Audio File), MXF (Material Exchange Format), R3D (Redcode Raw video image), SWF (Flash movie), TS (Video Transport Stream File), WEBM (HTML5 WebM Videos) and more

  • Other Files
    Other Files
    MP3, OGG, PDF (Portable Document Format), DOC/DOCX, XLS/XLSX, PPT/PPTX (Microsoft PowerPoint), RAR, ZIP (Extended Zip File), TXT, RTF

    RAW (Raw disk images), DD (Forensic DD images), IMG (Sector-by-sector disk images), ISO (Uncompressed disk images), DSK (Byte-to-byte disk images), BIN (Generic disk images), DAT (Legacy binary images), VMDK (Virtual VMWare disks) and more

Technical Specifications

  • free version

    Free Version

    • Up to 500 MB of free recovery (Windows)
    • Free data protection: Vault Restore (Windows & Mac) and Guaranteed Recovery (Mac)
    • Backing up byte-by-byte drives that are not working
    • Ability to test all available recovery methods
  • pro version

    Pro version

    • Unlimited data recovery
    • 1 user, up to 3 activations
    • Data recovery for all users: Quick & Deep Scan, Rebuild HFS+ (Mac), Smart FAT/exFAT and NTFS algorithms (Windows & Mac), Lost Partition Search & more
    • All digital storage types and file systems
  • quick scan

    Quick Scan

    Retrieve your data in the blink of an eye with the Quick Scan scanning method. Perfect for recovering freshly deleted files.
  • deep scan

    Deep Scan

    Solve complex data loss problems with the Deep Scan scanning method. Recommended for large and important data recovery jobs.
  • supported windows versions

    Supported Windows versions

    • Windows 10
    • Windows 8
    • Windows 8.1
    • Windows 7 SP1
  • supported macos versions

    Supported MacOS versions

    • macOS Catalina (10.15)
    • macOS Mojave (10.14)
    • macOS High Sierra (10.13)
    • macOS Sierra (10.12)
    • macOS El Capitan (10.11)
    • macOS Yosemite (10.10)
    • macOS Mavericks (10.9)
    • macOS Mountain Lion (10.8.5) up till v3.7.942
5 Easy Steps

How to Recover Files from SD Card

Recovering lost or deleted files from an SD card with Disk Drill is so easy that anyone can do it—no expert skills required! From start to finish, the entire process takes just five simple steps, and the actual recovery is a matter of a simple click. This is how to recover files from an SD card using Disk Drill:

Download and Install Disk Drill SD Card Recovery Software

Anyone can download Disk Drill for free and use it to recover up to 500 MB of data. To install it, open the downloaded installer file and allow it to make changes to your device if prompted by the User Account Control service. Follow the step-by-step installation instructions.
free sd card recovery

Connect the SD Card & Launch the App

Grab your SD card and connect it to your computer. Most laptops come with a built-in SD card reader, but desktop computers are typically not equipped with one. Fortunately, USB memory card readers are very affordable, and they let you easily connect all types of memory cards (not just SD cards) to your computer. After you’ve connected the SD card, launch Disk Drill.
sd card recovery software

Select the Card from the List & Start Scanning

Disk Drill’s main window lists all available storage devices, and your SD card should be among them, so find it and select it. Double-check that you’ve selected the right storage device and click the Search for lost data option to analyze it. Depending on how large and fast your SD card is, the process may take some time, so be patient and don’t interrupt it. If you don’t want to wait, you can click the Review found items button to browser recovered files during scanning.
recover deleted files from sd card

Preview the Results & Select the Files You Want to Recover

When Disk Drill finishes analyzing your SD card, it will display all recovered files, allowing you to browse through them and select those that you want to recover. You can preview files before recovery and use the filters on the left to filter out results you’re not interested in. The View button at the top lets you change how scan results are displayed.
recover files from sd card

Choose the Location & Recover Your Files

Now that you’ve selected all the files that you want to recover from your SD card, you can click the blue Recover button at the bottom and choose a destination to save them to. Disk Drill will automatically verify whether the destination is suitable for recovery. If it is, you can click OK to finish the file recovery process.
sd card recovery free
Use Disk Drill for Mac if you’re also interested in SD card recovery software for Mac. It offers the same outstanding data recovery performance and ease of use as Disk Drill for Windows.

Key Points for Successful SD Card Recovery

There are many variables when it comes to SD card recovery. By keeping in mind the following key points, you can maximize your chance of success and get your files back in no time.
  • Begin Recovery ASAP
    Begin Recovery ASAP
    Data recovery is a time-sensitive process, and the sooner you start, the better outcome you can expect. Disk Drill is available free of charge, and it can take as little as five minutes to recover SD card data with it. We recommend you use it before trying various SD card repair tools, many of which do more harm than good.
  • Avoid Physical Damage
    Avoid Physical Damage
    Deleted and lost files can be recovered from SD cards because it takes some time for them to become overwritten. However, even professional SD card recovery software like Disk Drill, which can handle corrupted SD cards, can’t recover files from memory cards that have been physically damaged.
  • Get It Right on the First Try
    Get It Right on the First Try
    Not all SD card recovery solutions are equally reliable, and some can even jeopardize your chance of successful recovery. That’s why you should always start with the most reliable solution you have at your disposal (hint: Disk Drill) and get it right on the first try.
  • Recover to a Different Storage Device
    Recover to a Different Storage Device
    Never save recovered files to the storage device from which you’ve recovered them from. You could accidentally overwrite the very same files you’re trying to recover, which would result in their permanent and irreversible loss.
  • Create a Byte-to-Byte Backup
    Create a Byte-to-Byte Backup
    Before you begin the recovery process, it’s a good idea to create a byte-to-byte backup of your SD card. That way, you can recover your lost data from the backup and leave your SD card intact.
  • Back Up Your Files
    Back Up Your Files
    Even though Disk Drill makes it easy to recover data from SD cards, you should still back up your files so that you always have an up-to-date backup ready in case something goes wrong. The good news is that the free version of Disk Drill comes with reliable backup features.

Never Lose Important Files Ever Again

Disk Drill goes beyond data recovery by providing you with a set of data management and data protection tools. Included among them is Recovery Vault, which is an extremely handy utility that monitors and protects selected files and folders. It automatically creates secure backups, allowing you to recover your files with a click of a button. All tools that come with Disk Drill for Windows are free even though they could be sold as stand-alone products for hundreds of dollars. The Recovery Vault utility is just one of many examples of the amazing value Disk Drill offers.
recover sd card

Customers and reviewers say

  • I have Disk Drill scanning my SD card and it seems to be recognizing all my files so I'm hopeful I can save everything I'm probably gonna move most of it to my computer so this doesn't happen again LOL
  • If anyone ever needs a file recovery software you NEED to use Disk Drill by @Cleverfiles. SD card corrupted with 128GB worth of files from a shoot at #Ploughing19 yesterday - Disk Drill recovered every single file, intact and no issues. Absolute LIFE SAVER!

Frequently Asked Questions

Updated on by Disk Drill Team

Several issues may cause this problem. Your phone might not read an SD card if the card is not inserted correctly. The card may need to have its contacts cleaned to eliminate debris. Another reason that your card cannot be read by your phone is that the card has become corrupted.

Yes, you can recover deleted photos from an SD card. When you delete a photo from an SD card, it remains physically present on the storage device until new data is stored in its place. Before that happens, data recovery software can find the deleted photo a get it back.

Yes, photos can be recovered from your phone’s SD card. The card needs to be connected to your computer through the phone or a card reader. Once the SD card is connected to the machine, your data recovery software application will identify the card as a disk and perform the restore.

Several methods can be attempted. Many devices offer a feature to recover recently deleted files. It’s always a good idea to check there first when searching for deleted photos. If you take backups of your SD cards you may be able to recover deleted photos from your backup storage media.

Absolutely! Formatting lets you quickly mark an entire SD card as empty, but, in most cases, it doesn't overwrite the stored data. As long as you begin the recovery process soon enough, you should be able to get back all or most photos from the formatted SD card.
If you have a backup of your files, you're in luck because you can use it to recover your SD card data for free and without any effort. If you don't have an up-to-date backup, you should try recovering your data using a free data recovery software application.

The first thing you need to do is to get a reliable Sandisk recovery tool. Next, you will need to follow all of the steps described earlier in this article using your data recovery software of choice.

Micro SD card recovery guaranteed

Disk Drill emphasizes simplicity, but that doesn’t mean that it can’t handle the most difficult data recovery scenarios. If you want something a bit more throughout than the standard recovery method, which can reliably recover over 200 file formats from all common storage devices, you can activate the Deep Scan recovery method. Deep Scan does exactly what the name suggests: It carefully analyzes each and every sector of your micro SD card, looking for scattered images and other files. It takes longer, but the results are worth the wait.
Disk Drill 4
    Windows 7 SP1+, 44 MB
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    4.6 by 117 users
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    Version 4.0.537, released on 24th Sep, 2020
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How Disk Drill serves other users

  • Steve Cox
    Steve Cox
    A huge thank you to you and the CleverFiles team!! The beta build worked perfectly—it found my friend’s lost RPP files! You’re absolutely fantastic people. I’m used to customers being treated like annoyances—but not CleverFiles. You are class acts. Many businesses would do well to follow your example.
  • «Disk Drill is a handy recovery software for Windows. It is easy to use and ships with two additional features, partition recovery and protections, that set it apart from the majority of data recovery programs.» by Martin Brinkmann
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