Is SD card data lost due to the memory card being formatted as Android internal storage? How to recover data from SD card formatted as internal memory? Now read this post from MiniTool to learn how to restore deleted files by using the best data recovery software, MiniTool Power Data Recovery.

Is It Possible to Recover Files From SD Card Formatted as Internal Storage

As software drives hardware improvements, apps on Android phones take up more storage space. In addition, social media applications such as WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter also bring a large number of documents, pictures, or videos. Although major mobile phone manufacturers have launched mobile phones with higher memory, many users still face the problem of insufficient memory in Android phones.

Many of them choose to format large-capacity SD cards as Android internal storage to meet their storage needs for more data. However, like regular SD card formatting, formatting the SD card to internal storage will also completely delete the data in the SD card.

Unfortunately, many users fail to notice this and lose important data. Is it possible to recover data from formatted SD card used as internal memory? Luckily, the answer is positive. Two powerful secure data recovery services can help you achieve this goal. Keep reading to get the details.

How to Recover Data From SD Card Formatted as Intenal Memory

Since the SD card is encrypted during the process of formatting it as Android internal storage. Therefore, before recovering its data, you need to decrypt the SD card so that Windows can recognize it. For this purpose, you need to format this SD card as a portable card.

For different mobile phone brands and models, the steps to reformat the SD card to portable may be slightly different. Please operate according to the actual situation.

Step 1. On your Android phone that uses the SD card as internal storage, tap Settings > Storage > SD card.

Step 2. Tap the three-dot icon > Format > Format SD card. If there is a Format as portable option available, tap this option.

Once you have successfully formatted the SD card as a portable card, you need to power off the phone, gently remove the card from the phone, and start data recovery.

Option 1. Use MiniTool Power Data Recovery

Regarding SD card data recovery, a professional file restoration tool is the most ideal choice. With the development of software technology, more and more data recovery tools come into view. Among them, MiniTool Power Data Recovery is the most recommended one.

As widely used free file recovery software, MiniTool Power Data Recovery not only excels at recovering data from SD cards formatted as internal memory but is also effective in recovering files copied to a USB drive, recovering blank SD cards, recovering data after Windows downgrade, and so on.

It supports recovering deleted or lost documents, videos, pictures, etc., which can meet your requirements for almost all types of data recovery. Besides, it can run smoothly on all Windows PC versions, including Windows 11/10/8/7.

Now download and install MiniTool Power Data Recovery Free on your computer to recover data from SD card formatted as internal memory.

MiniTool Power Data Recovery FreeClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

Here are the major steps to perform formatted SD card recovery with MiniTool Power Data Recovery:

Step 1. Connect the SD card to your computer.

First, you need to insert the SD card into an SD card reader and then connect the card reader to your PC where the data recovery software is installed.

Step 2. Select the SD card to scan.

Next, you should double-click on MiniTool Power Data Recovery to launch it. On its home page, you can see all computer internal hard drives and external hard drives are listed under the Logical Drives module. Here you need to find and move the mouse cursor to the target SD card (marked with a USB icon), then click the Scan button.

You may need to click the Refresh button to reload the drive list if you cannot see the SD card under Logical Drives.
scan the SD card

Step 3. Locate and preview the wanted items on the SD card.

When the scan process ends, all found files previously stored in the SD card will be listed by file path. You can open each folder to locate the desired files, but this method is time-consuming and cumbersome.

Here, to find the necessary files faster, you can take advantage of the following features:

  • Type: Instead of viewing found data by file path, the Type category list allows you to view files by specific file types, such as Document, Picture, Audio & Video, and so on. In addition, you can specify specific file formats, such as DOCX, JPG, PNG, MP4, etc.
  • Filter: Compared with Type, the Filter feature not only allows you to filter the files you want by file type but also supports customizing the file size and file modification date. Besides, if you only want to view deleted files, you can also check the Deleted Files option under By File Category.
  • Search: If you remember the file name of a specific file, you can use the search box to quickly retrieve the file. Just type the partial or complete file name in the search box and press Enter, and the target file will be displayed.
view files by file type
filter found files
search for a certain file

To make sure the recovered files are the required ones, you can preview them by double-clicking on each of them or clicking the Preview button. Preview is supported for most files no more than 2 GB in size, such as JPEG, JPG, PNG, MP4, MP3, XLS, XLSX, PDF, PPT, and more.

You are allowed to save videos and most types of image files directly from the preview window, as depicted below.
preview the video file

Step 4. Save the needed files.

Finally, you need to select all necessary files and then click the Save button to choose a file storage location to store the selected data. It is worth empathizing that you need to choose another drive instead of the original SD card to save the recovered files in the event of data overwriting.

save needed files

If the total size of the selected file exceeds 1 GB, you need to use a full edition of MiniTool Power Data Recovery. This is because the free edition supports only 1 GB of free file recovery.

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Option 2. Use MiniTool Mobile Recovery for Android

MiniTool has also released another easy-to-use data recovery tool – MiniTool Mobile Recovery for Android. This free Android data recovery software is specifically designed to recover data from Android internal memory or SD card.

It can effectively recover lost photos during transfer, recover Android data when the device is stuck in recovery mode, recover the deleted DCIM folder on the Android phone, and more.

Also, its clear interfaces and easy operations make it easy to perform formatted SD card recovery.

Here are the steps on how to recover data from formatted SD card on Android by using MiniTool Mobile Recovery for Android.

Step 1. Download, install, and launch MiniTool Mobile Recovery for Android.

MiniTool Android Recovery on WindowsClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

Step 2. On its main interface, select the Recover from SD-Card option.

select Recover from SD-Card

Step 3. Connect the SD card to your computer via a card reader, then click the Next button to continue.

Step 4. Select the target SD card and click Next.

Step 5. The mobile data recovery tool will start to analyze the device automatically. After analyzing the SD card, it will scan the data saved on the card.

analyze the device

Step 6. After scanning, all detected files on the SD card will be listed by file type on the scan result page. You can click on each file type to find the needed files.

For example, if you want to recover all pictures from the formatted SD card, you need to focus on Camera, Screenshot, and App Picture under Photos & Videos, as well as Picture under RAW & Document.

find the files

Step 7. Check the boxes next to the required files, then click the Recover button to select a desired file storage location.

save the files

Please note that there are data recovery limitations with the free version: only ten files of one file type can be recovered at one time.

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MiniTool Android Recovery on WindowsClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

Further Reading: How to Format an SD Card as Internal Storage

Many users suffer from data loss precisely because they do not understand the consequences of formatting the SD card as internal storage. Therefore, in the following sections, we detail what formatting an SD card to internal storage means, what the consequences of doing so are, and how to do it.

What Will Happen if You Format an SD Card as Internal Memory

Formatting an SD card as Android internal storage has both advantages and disadvantages. Its biggest advantage is that you can install apps to the SD card that has been formatted as internal storage and save the corresponding app data to it.

However, it has more disadvantages:

  • During the formatting process, all data on the SD card will be deleted.
  • Your SD card will be encrypted, which means it can no longer be recognized by another Android smartphone. If the phone is bricked or lost, you will not be able to access the data on the card from other devices, even if you removed the SD card beforehand.
  • After being formatted as internal storage, the SD card read and write speed will slow down.
  • Any device errors and virus attacks may cause SD card corruption, resulting in data loss.
  • During the use of mobile phones, a large amount of data reading and writing operations will shorten the service life of the SD card.

To sum up, we do not recommend using SD cards as internal storage devices in mobile phones. If you have carefully considered the pros and cons listed above and still decide to format the SD card as internal storage, please refer to the instructions in the next section.

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Steps to Format an SD Card as Internal Storage

The steps for formatting an SD card as internal storage differ across various brands/versions of Android phones. Please follow the prompts on your mobile phone to complete the corresponding operations.

Be sure to back up the data on the SD card before formatting it to prevent data loss. Here this post may be helpful: 3 Ways to Back up SD Card to Computer for Data Protection.

Step 1. On your Android phone, tap Settings > Storage. Next, find and tap the SD card according to the card name.

Step 2. Tap the three vertical dots in the upper right corner of the screen, then tap Storage Settings.

Step 3. Tap Format as internal > ERASE & FORMAT.

Step 4. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the necessary actions.

After that, you can use the formatted SD card to store data, including downloaded apps and app data.

See Also: SD Card Formatter & How Do I Format SD Card Quickly

Final Words

To sum up, using an SD card as internal storage is a great way to increase your phone’s memory capacity and change where your apps are stored. If you lose files during the formatting process without backup, you can use MiniTool Power Data Recovery or MiniTool Mobile Recovery for Android to recover data from SD card formatted as internal memory.

MiniTool Power Data Recovery FreeClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

MiniTool Android Recovery on WindowsClick to Download100%Clean & Safe

If you have any questions about the content mentioned above, including how to use MiniTool file recovery software, please feel free to send an email to [email protected].

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