SD Card Full But No Files On It – Resolved

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If you are looking out for a solution to fix the error SD card is full but not showing any files on it, you are on the right page. The article provides you a set of trusted and tried manual methods to fix SD cards full but no files problem.

SD card shows full but no files on it

User query on SD card is full but no files on it

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Why does SD card show full?
Recover data from the SD card that shows full but no files in it
How to fix the error-SD card is full but no files on it?
Frequently asked questions

The SD card shows full, but when you access, you see that the storage device is empty. If you are thinking why it is showing full without displaying any files on it, here is the answer-

Why is my SD card saying full when its not?

The reasons for the SD card is full but no file errors are simple. You might encounter the error if the files on the SD card are hidden, or if you have a corrupt SD card due to some virus infection or any other SD card errors.

Note: It is always recommended to recover data from the SD card and then move on to the methods to fix the issue SD card showing full but no files are seen on it.

You might be thinking how to recover data from the SD card, while the SD card displays no files on it. It’s a worrisome situation. Do not panic!! You can easily recover files from the SD card using the most trusted SD recovery tool.

SFWare is the most recommended and trusted tool to recover any data from the SD card. With the help of the tool, you can easily restore lost data from the error SD card shows full but no files on it.  The tool works effectively on all the SD card brands such as SanDisk, Transcend and all the camera SD cards like Canon, Nikon along with GoPro camcorders. The software is available for both Windows as well as Mac OS.

Free Download for WindowsFree Download for Mac

Recover data from the SD card that shows full but no files in it:

Download SFWare SD card Recovery Software and launch the application. Connect the SD card to the system. Select Recover files option from the main screen. In the next screen, Select the SD card drive from the list of drives displayed, and click next.

Recover files from SD card showing full but no files in it

Once the scanning process is completed, it displays all the recovered files in Data view and File type view. You can preview the files before saving the recovered files, if you are satisfied by the results you can save them to a location of your choice using the save option.

Preview the files recovered

Once you have completed recovering files from the SD card, move forward to fix the error.

How to fix the error, SD card is full but no files on it?

Following are  methods to fix the SD card that displays empty but shows full.

Method 1: Show hidden files on SD card

When the SD card is infected by any virus, the virus can attach itself to the auto run command of memory cards and makes all files on the memory card hidden but you can see disk space being used in Windows Explorer. But nothing to worry about, this issue can be fixed easily.

Follow the steps mentioned below:

    1. Open the Run Command, type cmd and Enter
    2. Type the following in the command prompt window – attrib -h -r -s /s /d F:\*.*
      CHKDSK to fix the error SD card full
    3.   Replace letter F with the SD card drive letter
    4.   Now go back to Windows Explorer and open the SD card, verify your files have reappeared or not.

View hidden files using File Explorer

To view hidden files on SD card, connect your SD card to the computer and go to file explorer.

Navigate to the view tab >> locate Show/Hide section >> Find and click on the Hidden Items check box

Method 2: Access SD card files directly

Generally, photos and videos in a camera’s SD card are stored in a folder called DCIM by default. By trying to access files directly from this folder, you can get access to the memory card. Follow the path to open the camera’s SD card:


Here, G represents an SD card drive letter.

Connect Camera Directly to Computer:

Try to connect your camera to the computer. This way, your camera acts as the card reader and you would be able to see all the files.

Method 3: Run Error Checking tool on SD card

You can make use of Windows Error-Checking utility to fix if the problem SD says full but no files when accessed is caused due to SD card corruption. Connect your SD card via card reader to the computer and follow the steps:

    1. Open File Explorer >> find your SD card.
    2. Right-click the SD card >> select Properties >> select the Tools tab.
    3. Under Error checking section >> Click Check
    4. Check the appropriate check boxes in the Check Disk dialogue box and click Start.

This starts to scan SD card for any errors. If errors found, the utility will try to fix SD card errors.

Method 4: Format the SD card 

If the above methods did not help you to fix the error, it is possible that your SD card is corrupted. All you have to do is Format the SD card.

Note: Make sure you recover your important files from the SD card before performing the format process. As the format process will wipe off all your data from the SD card.

  • To format the SD card, connect the SD Card to your PC.
  • Go to Windows File Explorer and find the SD Card drive, right-click on it and select Format.
    Format to NTFS
  • Set the file system to NTFS and confirm with OK, when you are asked permission to format the card.

If you have formatted the SD card data without recovering files from it, no worries! With the help of SFWare SD card recovery tool, you can easily restore data from the formatted or reformatted SD card without any hassle.

Method 5: Fix SD Card to Full Capacity Using CMD-Diskpart

If your SD card says full but empty when accessed, you can restore SD card to its initial sate using command prompt. Also, make sure you take a back up of the data if available, because using Diskpart command can lead to data loss situation.

    1. Press the Windows + R keys together >> open Run dialogue box.
    2. Type CMD and press the Enter key to open the Command Prompt window >> Run as administrator.

Type the following commands:

list disk
select disk 0 (replace 0 with the SD card’s disk number)
create partition primary
format fs=ntfs quick



Above-mentioned are the few methods to fix the error SD card is full but displays no files on it. As the errors are inevitable, it’s always recommended to keep the backup of your important files and favorite memories.

If you have successfully fixed the error with the help of the given methods, do share your thoughts in the comment section below.

Frequently Asked Question

What happens when an SD card says full?

When SD card says full, you will not be able to add any more data on it. However, if you check the properties of the SD card, you will know whether SD card is full or not. Sometimes, you might end up with SD card saying full but empty or no files on it. In such situation, you need fix the error and recover data from corrupt SD card.

How do I fix my full SD card problem?

You can first check with viewing hidden files. Sometimes, your files might be hidden and therefore by opening or viewing hidden files, you can fix the error. If your files are not hidden and yet showing full when opened, you can try fixing the error using command prompt as explained in the article.

How do I fix a full SD card on Android?

If your Android SD card is saying full but no files on it, you can fix the error by formatting the drive. All you need to is, take the back up of your data and format the SD card using a computer.

Now, reinsert the card into the Android device. Check if the card is detected, if the card is not detected, try formatting the card on the Android device.

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