3 Replies Latest reply: Jul 27, 2012 10:52 AM by CharliePryor
remi d Level 1 Level 1

All SD cards show up as "read only".



I asked this question a couple months ago I think but still have yet to find a way to fix this.

I have a macbook pro running Leopard 10.5.8 I have several SD cards that when I put into my SD card reader slot on the macbook pro I cannot write, delete or format. I can only read the card. I tried Disk Utility, formatting and partitioning the SD card are greyed out. Same with right-clicking "get info" on the card, I have only read access to all cards. Also the lock is not turned on, on any of the cards.

I had a work around where I was copying everything from the card onto my harddrive, then popping the SD card back into my camera and having the camera format the card to erase everything.

That worked fine until now I want to install a small program "magic lantern" onto my card for my camera, which i cannot do because i can only "read" the cards.

is there a terminal command I can try to format the card so that I can read/write?

Or can i go into single user mode maybe?

I have a theory now that my problem all originated from when i upgraded to this mbp i named the new computer harddrive the user name from my old powerbook. I think that caused admin issues when i migrated all my info from my powerbook to my new mbp. So I think parts of the computer think I have admin access and other parts might view me as a guest account, hence the read only access. This is just my theory though. Thoughts? Ideas?

MacBook Pro (15-inch 2.53 GHz), Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • Shootist007 Level 6 Level 6

    Try cleaning the contacts. Get some spray contect cleaner, Spray it on a SD card contacts and insert it and remove it a few times. Try this 2 or 3 time with new spray on the card contacts.





    If thast doesn't solve the problem the only other thing you can do is replace the motherboard as the SD card slot system is solder onto the motherboard.


    That is if you have done everything else to try and fix it. Like a Clean install of the operating system.


    Oh and make sure the cards aren't Locked.

  • fane_j Level 4 Level 4





    If that's not applicable, test the SD card using the new user technique



  • CharliePryor Level 1 Level 1

    If you are using a DSLR camera, like for example a Canon 60D, there may be an option to use a "Low-Level Formatting" on the card. This should make it writable when putting it into the computer.


    To test this (and confirm it works) I did the following:


    Hardware Used:


    Canon 60D camera body

    Sandisk 32GB SDHC Extreme Card

    Macbook Pro 15" (mid 2010 model) with built-in SD card slot.




    Place SDHC card into camera (SD card may work as well). Navigate through menu until you arrive at settings that allow the camera to format the card. There may be an option to format it "low-level", which you would then select.

    -Note that all files on card will be erased permanently.-


    After the camera formats, eject the card from the camera, and place inside the built-in SD slot on the Macbook.


    The card should automatically mount, containing both read and write priviledges.


    Hope that helps.



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