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[Guides for Beginners] How to Fix “SD Card Access Denied” Error?

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

Jan 27, 2024 • Filed to: Answer Hard Drive Problems • Proven solutions

Today, SD cards are popular. These small storage devices are very practical and allow you to carry huge amounts of information. Also, the SD cards are very resistant, which makes them an excellent option for portable storage. For this reason, it is increasingly common for digital cameras or smartphones to use these devices as their storage medium. However, despite being one of the most reliable storage media, this does not mean that they are foolproof. In this post, I will explain how to solve the "Access Denied" error of SD cards through various methods.

Why Does Your SD Card Is Denied?

Q: I bought a digital camera a few days ago and took some photos. When I tried to open them from my computer, I got the error message Access Denied. Does anyone know how I can fix this problem?

The Access Denied error is a problem that occurs when Windows is unable to access the information on a device. However, it does not necessarily mean that the information is lost or corrupted. There are some methods for this problem. But to choose the right method, you will need to identify the source of the problem. Therefore, before jumping to solutions to the problems, we need to know about the origins of the problem.

1. Bad sectors on the micro SD card: As I mentioned earlier, SD cards are not foolproof. SD cards store information differently than a conventional hard drive. Information is energy interpreted in binary language and stored in tiny cells. These cells can retain energy, but over time, they wear out and gradually lose the ability to store information. When this happens, the information it contains suffers damage to its integrity, making it impossible to read.

2. Corrupted SD card: SD cards can suffer data corruption for various reasons. The causes are usually related to the interruption of the writing processes, even though it is also important to bear in mind that the cells of an SD card can lose the data retention capacity, and this in turn, can corrupt the files it has stored.

3. Physical damage on the SD card: Even though SD cards are one of the most reliable storage media, there is a possibility that your SD card has suffered some physical damage that compromises the integrity of the electronic components within the device. When this happens, all kinds of problems can arise related to writing, reading data, or even recognizing the device.

4. Virus infection: Viruses can cause all kinds of problems; it is determinant to remember that a virus is essentially software that alters the way Windows works. For this reason, a virus can corrupt the data on practically any device or can even deny you read or write access; however, you can fix this problem with the help of an antivirus.

5. You do not have permission to access the SD card: Data read and write permissions are tools in the operating system that allow the computer administrator to choose who can or cannot open or edit a file. Sometimes some SD cards may be preconfigured to restrict these permissions from unauthorized computers, and as a consequence, the Access Denied error will appear.

How to Fix SD Card Access Denied Error?

Now that you know the possible causes of the problem, you should choose one of the following methods to solve it. Keep in mind that none of these methods will put the information on your SD card at risk, so if after trying any of these methods, you are unable to correct the problem, you can try any other alternative without risk.

1 Recover Data from Inaccessible SD Card

This method is practically foolproof. Through using professional data recovery software-Wondershare Recoverit. With it, you can extract and repair the deleted files on the SD card. You can download it for free through its official website. I will show you how to use it below.

Step 1: Select a drive to scan


Once you have installed and opened the software, a window like the one displayed in the image will appear. On the External devices section, select your SD card and click on Start, this will start a scanning process on the device.

Step 2: Wait until the scanning process is finished


Once the scanning process has started, you will be able to see all the files that have been found on the device listed and organized by format. You can see the progress of the process at the top of the window and stop it when you have found what you need on the list.

Step 3: Set the filter preferences

To facilitate the search, I recommend you use the panel on the right to create a search filter; in this way, you can make the scanning process faster and more efficient.

Step 4: Preview the files


Digital cameras or phones often assign hard-to-recognize alphanumeric names to their files, so this software allows you to preview the files that it has found through the scanning process so that you can identify the files you want to recover or repair fastly.

Step 5: Recover the files


When you find an image that you want to recover, check the box to the left of the file name. You can select as many files as you want and when you finished, click the Recover button. Now, all you have to do is choose a destination location where you want to save the information resulting from this recovery process. Just remember not to select your SD card as the destination location in case it is damaged.

2 Gain Permission to Inaccessible SD Card

If the problem was because you do not have read and write permissions, don't worry, this is something easy to solve. Next, I will show you how to acquire the read or write permissions of your SD card.

Step 1: Open the device properties


The first thing you should do is right-click on the name of the device from the Windows file explorer and select the Properties option. Then, a window like the one shown in the image will appear.

Step 2: Allow Full control


Select the name of your user in the list that appears at the top of the screen; then, you must make sure that all the boxes you checked correspond to the Allow option. When you finished, click on Apply and then OK.

3 Run CHKDSK to Repair the Inaccessible SD Card

If the problem was caused by bad sectors or an error in the device's file system, you can use CHKDSK to repair it. I will show you how to do it below.

Step 1: Open Command Prompt


To use the CHKDSK tool, you must first access the Command prompt. The easiest way to access this tool is by opening the Windows menu and typing CMD. Once you did it, you must click on the Run as administrator option that appears in the right panel.

Step 2: Run the CHKDSK built-in tool


Now, all you have to do is type the following code CHKDSK / f x: and then press Enter and wait for the process to finish. This tool will perform any necessary repairs automatically.

(Make sure to replace X: with the letter that corresponds to your SD card).

4 Format the Inaccessible SD Card

If you did not solve the problem with method 2 and 3, you can choose to format the device. In this way, you will be able to solve the Access denied error definitely, but you must bear in mind that this process will delete the information from the device. I will show you how to do it below. (In case you want to get it back, you can use method 1).

Step 1: Open the Format… tool


To access this tool, you must right-click on the device name from the Windows file explorer, and then you must select the format… option in the drop-down menu.

Step 2: Set formatting preferences


Now you must choose the preferences of the formatting process. (You can select the default options and assign a name) After that, click on Start and wait for the process to finish.


Today, SD cards are essential tools, and for this reason, they have become increasingly sophisticated; however, some factors can cause problems such as the Access denied error. Fortunately, there are tools like Recoverit that allow you to recover and repair information from virtually any device, even if the files have been erased. Just make a couple of clicks, and you will have recovered your data as if nothing had ever happened.

Recoverit author

Theo Lucia

chief Editor

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