Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have an SD card with a corrupt filesystem, so wanted to clone it and attempt recovery on the copy (just in case of problems). I was thinking that dd-ing it Linux would be a sensible way to go, but don't really want to experiment in this situation. So if anyone has done this before then it would be good to know the exact approach that works.

In case it helps, I have Ubuntu, OSX and Windows machines available.

TIA, Paul.

share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

If your SD-card has a "lock switch", you could just set that and run any recovery software. A good recovery program will never have to write to the corrupted disk and therefore it does not need write access. Instead, the recovery program should write to a secondary media.

This only applies when only the data (or filesystem) is corrupt and not the hardware (the SD card itself)

I always use File Scavenger but it needs to be paid for. I would advise you on other programs but I have no experience with any of them. Maybe someone else here could advise you on that if you've never used any recovery program before. (The downloadable demo-version of FileScavenger is not to be used if you're not interested in buying it. It only allows for the first 64KB of each file to be restored.)

share|improve this answer
I guess I was just being paranoid - now that I have some recovery software recommended I'll give it a try on the card direct. Thanks! – pdbartlett May 24 '10 at 9:09
File Scavenger worked a treat, thanks! – pdbartlett May 24 '10 at 9:41

I would recommend dd_rescue. If you're using Linux, you can mount it as a readonly device. To ensure that HAL/DeviceKit doesn't mount it for you, you could try booting into a terminal only mode (init 3) or use a linux system without a GUI.

share|improve this answer
This is probably closer to what I had it in mind to do, but @BloodPhilia managed to persuade me to be less paranoid and just trust the recover tool to do what it was meant to. Thanks anyway! – pdbartlett May 24 '10 at 9:43

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.