Even though xD-Picture Cards, commonly referred to simply as xD cards, are no longer used in any camera that’s currently in production, many people still rely on them every single day. If you’re among them and have accidentally deleted important files from your xD card, you can follow the step-by-step xD card recovery instructions in this article to get your files back in no time.
What Is an xD-Picture Card?
Today, SD cards dominate the global memory card market, being used in all kinds of electronic devices, from cameras to smartphones to smart home products. However, that wasn’t always the case.
During the early 2000s, SmartMedia had the biggest percentage share (40%) of worldwide digital camera storage, but it also had its fair share of limitations. To start with, SmartMedia cards were very large, and their capacity topped at just 128 MB.
It was clear to most leading digital camera manufacturers at the time that a new memory card standard needed to be created. Fujifilm and Olympus took this difficult task upon themselves and, in July 2002, revealed the xD-Picture Card.
This new memory card standard was created specifically for digital cameras, and it was significantly smaller than SmartMedia (20 mm x 25 mm x 1.7 mm versus 45.0 mm × 37.0 mm × 0.76 mm). xD cards for cameras also promised a storage capacity of up to 8 GB, delivered superior read/write speeds, and was designed to use minimal power, among other things.
There are many reasons why SD memory cards—not xD memory cards—have eventually become the dominant type of memory cards. One reason is that the xD-Picture Card format was proprietary to Fujifilm and Olympus, which other camera manufacturers didn’t like. What’s more, xD cards were unable to keep up with emerging memory cards standards in terms of speed and capacity, so most consumers naturally lost interest in them.
Is It Difficult to Recover Data from xD Cards?
xD cards are flash-based memory cards just like SD cards, CF cards, or MMC cards. When a file is deleted from a flash-based memory card, it remains physically present on the drive until it becomes overwritten by new data.
That’s great news for anyone who needs to recover deleted files from an xD card because it means that it’s possible to use readily available data recovery software to get the job done from home and with minimal effort.
Since xD cards are used almost exclusively in older digital cameras, it’s important to select a data recovery software solution capable of recovering all current and older image and video file formats, including the following:
- BMP (Bitmap)
- JP2 (JPEG2000 image)
- JPG (JPEG image)
- JPX (JPEG2000 image)
- MKV (Matroska Video)
- MP4 (MPEG-4 video)
- MPA (MPEG-2 Audio File)
- MPG (MPEG video)
- OGM (Oog Media)
- ORF (Olympus camera RAW image)
- PNG (Portable Network Graphic)
- RAF (Fujifilm RAW image data)
- RM (RealMedia)
- TIFF (Tagged Image File Format)
- TS (Video Transport Stream File)
One such data recovery software solution is Disk Drill, and we explain how to use it to undelete xD cards in the next section.
How to Recover Files from XD Card
Are you ready to recover data from your xD card? If so, here’s what you need to do:
Connect the xD Card to Your Computer
Wait for Your Computer to Recognize the xD Card
Download and Install Disk Drill
Launch Disk Drill and Scan Your xD Card
Recover Your Files
How to Repair Common xD Card Errors?
Sometimes, attempts to recover deleted files from xD cards become unsuccessful due to common xD card errors. Here’s how you can fix them.
xD Card Not Recognized
Symptom: You insert the xD card into your xD card reader, wait, but nothing happens.
Solution: First of all, you need to verify that both the xD card and your xD card reader are actually working. If you can, insert the xD card into a digital camera and see if you can access it (be careful because you don’t want to format it!). To verify that your xD card reader is working correctly, insert a different xD card into it.
If your xD card and xD card reader seem to be in good working order, there might be a problem with your operating system and/or drivers. The simplest solution is to use a different computer to recover your files, but you can also attempt to reinstall the relevant drivers. This article explains how.
xD Card Needs to Be Formatted
Symptom: You insert the xD card into your xD card reader, and your computer displays the “You need to format the disk in drive X: before you can use it” or a similar message.
Solution: While you can fix this error by formatting the xD card, doing so would make it considerably more difficult for you to recover all lost images and videos. Instead, we recommend you scan the xD card for errors using CHKDSK in Windows or First Aid in macOS.
xD Card Data Transfer Error
Symptom: You start scanning your xD card using data recovery software, but the scan suddenly stops, and the software displays a data transfer error message.
Solution: In most cases, xD card data transfer errors are caused by a faulty xD card reader or damaged connection pins on the xD card itself. You should also check if the cable connecting your xD card reader to your computer is in top shape and replace it if it isn’t.