How to Delete SD Card Files Using Mac

How to Delete SD Card Files on Mac

Are you trying to delete SD card files on Mac? If your answer is yes, then here you will find out how you can do it.

Wondershare Recoverit Authors

Dec 03, 2020 • Filed to: SD Card Solutions • Proven solutions


Case: I want to use my camera to click more pictures but the storage is already full. I don’t know how to delete photos from the SanDisk memory card on Mac. Can someone help me to do it?

It is not rocket science that sometimes people have to delete SD card files to free up some space. Typically, users can easily do that. But the ones who have bought new devices like camera, or handy cam, or any other device on which they are using the SD card, they might not know about it that much. That’s why it is a better alternative to delete the SD card files using Mac.

In this article, you will learn both, how to delete the SD card files and how to restore the deleted files from the SD card.

Part 1. Why Delete SD Card Files

It is a debatable question. People often argue about the importance of formatting and erasing the data from a storage device. Whether it is hard to drive or an SD card, every storage media should be formatted from time to time to keep the optimal performance. You should know some things about the SD cards which will assure you that you need to erase the card frequently.

Irregular behavior of an SD card is often caused by corrupted or damaged data. In this case, it is better to format the SD card. But if everything is working fine, then simple erasure will do the job.

If you want your deleted photos back, you may be interested in Recovering Photos from Formatted or Corrupted SDHC Card.

Part 2. How to Delete SD Card Files on Mac

Mac has provided a very convenient method to delete files from any kind of storage device. But you will have to access the files first. When you want to delete SD card files on Mac, it is a very neat and clean method. You only have to move the files to Trash and the card will be empty and ready for use. To do this, you will have to follow the steps given below:

Step 1: Connect the SD card to Mac and a drive icon will appear on the desktop. The drive will appear by its name such if your drive name is SANDISK, then it will appear as SANDISK on desktop.

Step 2: Double-click on the icon to view the files and folders stored on the SD card. You can select the files and folder just by clicking them. To select multiple files at once, hold the Apple key and select the files you want to delete.

Step 3: Now drag the files to the Trash bin and they will be deleted from the card. You can perform a complete deletion or perform a selection deletion using this method.


Step 4: Don’t just leave the files in Trash. Hold down the CTRL key while you click on Trash and you will see the Open and Empty Trash option.

Step 5: Click on the Empty Trash option and remove the items from the Trash too.


This will permanently remove the files from your Card and Mac trash. If the space occupied by the files is the same after this, that means that the files are not deleted properly and you will have to carry out the task again. But don’t worry; if you deleted some important files, we also have a tool that can recover files from empty trash too.

Part 3. How to Erase SD Card Using Mac

Another method that you can use to delete files on the SD card using Mac is the Disk Utility feature. It is more like a formatting method instead of a simple erasure. The files deleted with this method may or may not be available for recovery. Plus, this method assures that the card will be free of errors and it can be used on a device you like. Follow the steps below to permanently erase the SD card.

Step 1: Connect the SD card to Mac and open Disk Utility from the Applications. As the Disk Utility window opens up, you will be in the First Aid tab by default.

Step 2: Select the SD card from the left side panel and switch to the Erase tab.


Step 3: Now, you will have to give a name to the Card and choose the file format system for the card. Typically, the appropriate format is exFAT as it is supported by Windows and Mac OS.


Then click on the Erase button and let the Disk Utility finish the task. You will be notified when the process is finished and you can remove the card from Mac easily. This process is called formatting and it is mostly used to change the file format system of storage media. This process consists of three important terms which are explained below.

1. Disk Utility

In Mac OS X, the disk utility software helps the users to manage disks on your computer including the SD card. The disk utility can be used to safely remove disks, burn DVDs, and erase the entire disk. Formatting the drive marks all data as deleted and prepares the drive for future use. Typically, formatting an SD card won’t require much time, but if you apply advanced security options, then it will take a while.

2. Formatting

Within the format menu, you can select the specific format in which data is stored on the SD Card. You can select the format as per your intend to use the SD card for the device. If you plan to use the card on Mac, then the format should be kept as Mac OS Extended Journaled. If you plan to use the card on smartphones or digital cameras, then you should prefer using MS-DOS format.

3. Security Options

You can also set up the Security option inside the Erase tab before you begin the format. The choices are zero-out data, 7-Phase Erase, and 35-Pass Erase. Each pass provides more secure formatting to the card and it is also time-consuming. Depending on the size of the card, it will take some time but the format will be successful. Keep in mind that the data erased using the 35-Pass will make the data files irrecoverable.

Part 4. How to Recover Deleted Files on Mac

If you deleted the files mistakenly from the SD card, then you still have a chance to recover them. Recoverit Mac data recovery software is here to help you. So, whether you have intentionally deleted the files or you lost it due to some other problem, Recoverit can restore deleted files from the SD card with just one click.

All you need to do is to download the software and install it on your Mac. then follow the steps below and get the files back:

Step 1: Run Recoverit:

Launch the software and connect the SD card to the system. From the main interface, specify the drive whose data you want to recover and click on the Start button.

Step 2: Scan the Card:

The software will scan the SD card for lost or deleted files. You can also stop the scan if you already found the files. The files will be displayed on the screen according to the file type or file path.

Step 3: Scan and Recover:

Now, select the files that you want to recover and have a preview of the files. Don’t forget to look at the condition of the files as they might not available for recovery in good condition.

Select as many files as you want and tap on the Recover button. Wait as the software restores the deleted SD card files on your system. It will take a while depending on the size of recovery. But you will have your data back in original quality.

Part 5. Tips for Deleting SD Card Files on Mac

Whether you are about to delete SD card files or trying to recover them somehow, there are some things that you should keep in mind. Data and files stored on the devices are important and that’s why you can’t risk being careless with them. Take a look at these tips for deleting the SD card files and the next time you can avoid deleting important files.

It is said that prevention is better than cure. So, you just have to be careful from the start so that you don’t make a blunder mistake of deleting the only copy of your data files.


Now you know several methods to delete SD card files. And if somehow you accidentally deleted some important files, then you’ll still have an option to recover them. Recoverit Mac data recovery can help you to restore deleted files from an SD card or any other kind of storage device. Thus, whenever you lost a file, you will have a tool that can effectively restore the file in original quality. Recommend Recoverit to your friends and family so they will also have access to Recoverit in case of emergencies.

Recoverit author

Eleanor Reed

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