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Old 01-05-2015, 11:53 AM   #1
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Default Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

I want to transfer some photos from my Canon EOS 550D camera onto my HP Pavilion a6250 computer, which is running Windows 7.

In the past, I simply put the SD card into the appropriate slot in the front of the machine and waited for it to show up on "Computer" as an extra drive. For some reason that procedure no longer works. The card IS physically recognised as having been inserted, as evidenced by the lighting up of the green LED next to the slot, but ALL of the drives allocated to the card slots, (H: I: J: and L: ) respond with a "Please insert a disk into Drive H: (or which-ever)" message when clicked on. For the sake of completeness, and just to be ridiculous, I have clicked on each in turn of all the other drives that are displayed, but unsurprisingly none of those contain my photos.

Next I tried putting the SD card back in the camera and then using its USB cable to connect to a USB slot on the computer. Same result, no additional letter appeared, showing the camera as a drive.

By way of checking that USB slot, I removed the camera's USB cable and instead inserted a USB cable connected to an external hard-drive in exactly the same USB slot. Virtually instantly a new drive icon appeared, (labelled "Removeable N:" ), and I was able to access the drive's contents normally.

Done all I can think of. Any help greatly appreciated.
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Old 01-06-2015, 04:53 AM   #2
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

Try reinstalling the drivers to the card reader on the PC, the green LED means that the card reader recognises that something is plugged in, but it doesn't necessarily mean it's communicating correctly with the rest of the PC!
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Old 01-06-2015, 07:29 AM   #3
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

Thank you for your suggestion, joedaman633, much appreciated. Two things:
1. I don't know where the card reader drivers are located on my machine, or what drivers are used, so don't know what to search the C: drive - (or Google if necessary), for.
Ah-ha! Just had an idea. I dug out an old Compact Flash card from my previous camera and put that in the appropriate slot. Result - it claimed the I: drive and displayed the photos on it perfectly normally. My computer has two other slots, (for SmartMedia/xD and MS/Pro respectively), but I can't check those as I haven't got cards for them. However, on the evidence of the Compact Flash slot working ok, would you agree that it seems to be just the SD slot rather than the whole card reader that is playing up?
2. Presumably the inability to read the SD card via USB from the camera instead is unrelated to the card reader issue? Any thoughts on that option?
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:25 AM   #4
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

I just looked for the drivers too and actually can't find them myself either...

Your assessment seems to be pretty reasonable then, perhaps the contacts in that particular slot are damaged. But it could also be the SD card itself that isn't working, is the SD card working in the camera? Is it working in another PC/Card Reader?

Open "Run" in the start menu, and type "diskmgmt.msc". Then plug your SD card into the card reader at the front of the PC. Does anything change, or do you get any more volumes appear on the list of disks? (don't worry, this will make more sense when you see the window that has appeared)
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Old 01-06-2015, 08:35 AM   #5
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

Put the card back in the camera. Connect a USB cable to the camera and the computer. After it finds the drivers for it, the computer will show the camera as an external drive.
I do that with my FUJI all the time to keep from having to open the battery door where the SD chip is.
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Old 01-07-2015, 07:47 AM   #6
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

Thank you so much again joedaman633. Short version reply - SUCCESS! Bless you. Longer version: First put the SD card in the reader in my wife's Lenovo laptop. Displayed the photos I've been after straight away - so the card is fine, that's that possibility eliminated. Ok, back to my machine and followed your disk management instructions. All the removable drives (plus the others as well, of course), listed and shown as empty. Pushed the card in. Immediately the disk management window showed the H: drive as having been claimed. I left that and went to "Computer" on the Start menu. Yup, there's the H: drive showing as having content, (1.13gb free of 3.68gb). Clicked it, hey presto, my photos!

So, obviously the reason it is now reading the card when it didn't before is . . . erhm . . . because . . . erhm??? The only variable/difference seems to be that I first ran disk management as you suggested. Presumably I shouldn't actually need to do that every time . . . . !!!!

Going back to my other attempt, the USB connection, (and thank you to setishock for that thought too), why is that connection not recognising the camera as a drive?(setishock - you are of course quite correct, but for some reason plugging the USB into the computer when the other end is already connected to the camera, does not result in any hunt for drivers nor do I get a new "camera" drive appearing). I have just connected the camera that way now, with the disk management window open, but no extra drive appeared there, nor in the "Computer" window.
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Old 01-07-2015, 08:47 AM   #7
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

I'm glad it's all working for you again! I wish I could claim that entering the disk management screen would fix any thing, but I suspect that this is just one of those things that the PC has suddenly decided to start reading SD cards again of it's own accord (probably because you turned the PC on and off again, hah).

So, you shouldn't have to open disk management every time, I'm sure it was a coincidence!

When you plug the camera in via USB, if it's not switched on, try turning it on, often the the device needs to be turned on to be recognised

Cheers!

-J
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:26 AM   #8
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Default Re: Windows 7 won't show my SD card as a drive

Hi again, sorry to have been away for a while. The death of our central heating boiler, (so currently living in a 4-bed ice box!), has tended to distract my attention from this SD issue somewhat! Wouldn't be so bad if it wasn't for the fact that we are also in the middle of a complete kitchen replacement, so no sink, no oven, no hob, no storage for food or utensils - no fun!
Moving swiftly on, main thing to report is that the computer is STILL recognising the SD card, (ie, with no disk management screen intervention required). Just now copied across more photos, no problem.
As for the USB connection, that is still not working. You are quite right to check the obvious, (is it switched on? !!!), done that myself many times when helping folk. But it's not that. There has been a slight change however. Previously, upon connection the camera the screen on the camera back very briefly said BUSY then cleared the message. When I tried the USB option just now, the same message was displayed for much longer - maybe a minute or so - before disappearing. A check with the USB icon in the system tray offered the option to "Eject USB to ATA/ATAPI bridge" so the computer is obviously detecting the presence of the connection, as corroborated by another error message "Device is still in use. Close any ..... etc, etc" when I attempted to click/eject on the message.
Very strange, this one. Any other pearls of wisdom at all, please?

---------- Post added at 03:26 PM ---------- Previous post was at 03:22 PM ----------

Ah! a quick self follow-up. I assumed that the USB to ATA/ATAPI was the camera's USB cable connection. Looks as though I'm wrong. I have physically disconnected that USB cable, but that same Eject ATA stuff is still being offered on the USB icon. No idea now what that is.
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