How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

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How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby ninnington on Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:36 am

Hello, I am very new to linux and i dont really know how to use it.
I am trying to open my SD card so i can use it, but when i put the SD card in the machine the computer ignores it, the SD card doesn't show up any where that i have looked, which is another part of the problem as I don't know where i am supposed to look, i assumed it would be in devices in the file manager (thunar 1.6.2) but it isnt.

As i said in the title i am using linux mint 15 xfce 32bit, the SD card is 2GB and made by sandisk (if that helps).

I know thats the disk works as it works on every other computer i have used. It could be the drive that is broken but it always used to work when the computer was windows xp so i don't think its that, but i dont know how to check.

I have also tried formating the card with NTFS, FAT, FAT32, and exFAT in the hope it would make a difference but it doesn't.

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby jintawk on Tue Oct 29, 2013 10:23 am

Normally when a new device is inserted you can expect Mint to put a shortcut on the desktop and a new entry inside the file manager, and also give a 'what should I do with this device' kind of popup.

Obviously if this hasn't happened then it's not working for some reason.

Try going to 'Disks' found in the applications menu under 'Preferences' and check if your disk appears on the left hand side. If it does then your drive/card is working, you can try formatting it from here. You could also try installing 'gparted' from the Software Center which is a more in depth tool for formatting/partitioning etc.

If neither of these things can see your card, I would suggest there may be a problem with your reader.

Personally, I have a laptop with an SD card reader that has never worked properly under any OS. It's an Acer Aspire something something.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby gold_finger on Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:55 pm

Have a feeling jintawk may be right that reader not working -- usually will be able to see it whether it's mounted or not in Places menu (button next to the Menu button -- lower left on screen) or on left-hand side of Thunar as you already noted it not showing up in. Did you use the reader recently on Windows, or has it been a while?

Don't think this is the problem, but also go to Menu > Settings > Removeable Drives and Media and make sure appropriate boxes are checked to mount removeable drives and media when inserted. If they are already checked properly, do as jintawk said and go to Menu > Settings > Disks and see if it shows up on the left-hand side.

Still no luck, open GParted (Menu > System > GParted). Enter password, give it a 10-20 seconds to read drives, then click the arrows in the box to the upper right that likely says "/dev/sda". Look to see if card is recognized and choose it from that menu. (If you have multiple drives in your computer, look for the one that matches the 2GB size of your Sandisk card.) If GParted doesn't see and list the card, then chances are your reader is not working. If it does find it, then format it with GParted and see if that makes a difference. (FAT32 should be fine.)

Very long shot -- turn off computer and try blowing out any dust with compressed air. Who knows, maybe that's the problem.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby ninnington on Sat Nov 02, 2013 11:37 pm

Thank you for your incredibly quick replies, and i appologise for my very late reply.
Try going to 'Disks' found in the applications menu under 'Preferences' and check if your disk appears on the left hand side. If it does then your drive/card is working, you can try formatting it from here. You could also try installing 'gparted' from the Software Center which is a more in depth tool for formatting/partitioning etc.

I did both of these things and sadly niether showed my SD card :/
Don't think this is the problem, but also go to Menu > Settings > Removeable Drives and Media and make sure appropriate boxes are checked to mount removeable drives and media when inserted. If they are already checked properly, do as jintawk said and go to Menu > Settings > Disks and see if it shows up on the left-hand side.

I have tried ticking various combinations of boxes sadly none of them work (i didn't think it would make a difference if i ticked the different boxes in different combinations but i though that i might as well try) so I dont think its that.
till no luck, open GParted (Menu > System > GParted). Enter password, give it a 10-20 seconds to read drives, then click the arrows in the box to the upper right that likely says "/dev/sda". Look to see if card is recognized and choose it from that menu. (If you have multiple drives in your computer, look for the one that matches the 2GB size of your Sandisk card.) If GParted doesn't see and list the card, then chances are your reader is not working. If it does find it, then format it with GParted and see if that makes a difference. (FAT32 should be fine.)

Tried this but the card did not show up :/
Very long shot -- turn off computer and try blowing out any dust with compressed air. Who knows, maybe that's the problem.

I won't try this as my computer is bad enough all ready with out me pulling it appart :D
Unfortunatly it looks like the card reader is indeed broken, it just seems odd as it worked fine when the computer ran on windows, but it has been a while since it last ran windows so it may have broken the time it spent sat in a draw.
Thanks a million for your help, its very much apreciated :)
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby gold_finger on Sun Nov 03, 2013 1:18 am

gold_finger wrote:Very long shot -- turn off computer and try blowing out any dust with compressed air.

ninnington wrote:I won't try this as my computer is bad enough all ready with out me pulling it appart :D
Unfortunatly it looks like the card reader is indeed broken, it just seems odd as it worked fine when the computer ran on windows, but it has been a while since it last ran windows so it may have broken the time it spent sat in a draw.
Thanks a million for your help, its very much apreciated :)


Just aim some compressed air into the SD card slot. Probably won't solve the problem, but ... you never know. If it's dead already you can't kill it again.

P.s. May want to wait a bit for laptop to cool down before blowing compressed air in just in case there is a chance of damaging hot parts with sudden blast of cold air.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby Mark Phelps on Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:38 pm

The SD card reader is unlikely to be "broken" just because it doesn't work in Linux. It's more likely that there is no Linux driver for that device -- especially if it worked in Windows, but not in Linux. IF you don't see it listed under "lspci", the kernel doesn't see it -- and you won't be able to use it.

Most common "solution" I've seen to it (and , the one I use myself) is to get a small USB-connected memory card reader. Linux will load the USB drivers and you should then be able to use the SD cards.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby ninnington on Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:12 pm

Just aim some compressed air into the SD card slot. Probably won't solve the problem, but ... you never know. If it's dead already you can't kill it again.

P.s. May want to wait a bit for laptop to cool down before blowing compressed air in just in case there is a chance of damaging hot parts with sudden blast of cold air.


Oh i understand what you mean now, i will try this soon, just incase the reader got dusty while sat in the draw. Thanks.

The SD card reader is unlikely to be "broken" just because it doesn't work in Linux. It's more likely that there is no Linux driver for that device -- especially if it worked in Windows, but not in Linux. IF you don't see it listed under "lspci", the kernel doesn't see it -- and you won't be able to use it.


How do i use lspci? and what should i expect when i use it? thanks.

Most common "solution" I've seen to it (and , the one I use myself) is to get a small USB-connected memory card reader. Linux will load the USB drivers and you should then be able to use the SD cards.


Unfortunatly I cant do this as none of the USB ports have ever worked, including when it was windows, so i assume that is somthing wrong with the machine.

Thanks again for your help.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby jintawk on Wed Nov 06, 2013 12:55 pm

To run lspci just open a terminal and enter lspci
It just lists all PCI devices and buses connected to the System.
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Re: How do I access my SD card on linux mint 15 32bit xfce??

Postby ninnington on Thu Nov 14, 2013 5:46 am

When I entered lspci i got this:

00:00.0 Host bridge: Intel Corporation 82865G/PE/P DRAM Controller/Host-Hub Interface (rev 02)
00:01.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82865G/PE/P AGP Bridge (rev 02)
00:06.0 System peripheral: Intel Corporation 82865G/PE/P Processor to I/O Memory Interface (rev 02)
00:1d.0 USB controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) USB UHCI Controller #1 (rev 02)
00:1d.1 USB controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) USB UHCI Controller #2 (rev 02)
00:1d.2 USB controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) USB UHCI Controller #3 (rev 02)
00:1d.3 USB controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) USB UHCI Controller #4 (rev 02)
00:1d.7 USB controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) USB2 EHCI Controller (rev 02)
00:1e.0 PCI bridge: Intel Corporation 82801 PCI Bridge (rev c2)
00:1f.0 ISA bridge: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) LPC Interface Bridge (rev 02)
00:1f.1 IDE interface: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) IDE Controller (rev 02)
00:1f.3 SMBus: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) SMBus Controller (rev 02)
00:1f.5 Multimedia audio controller: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) AC'97 Audio Controller (rev 02)
00:1f.6 Modem: Intel Corporation 82801EB/ER (ICH5/ICH5R) AC'97 Modem Controller (rev 02)
01:00.0 VGA compatible controller: NVIDIA Corporation NV34M [GeForce FX Go5100] (rev a1)
02:00.0 FireWire (IEEE 1394): Texas Instruments TSB43AB21 IEEE-1394a-2000 Controller (PHY/Link)
02:01.0 Ethernet controller: Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8139/8139C/8139C+ (rev 10)
02:04.0 CardBus bridge: Toshiba America Info Systems ToPIC100 PCI to Cardbus Bridge with ZV Support (rev 33)
02:06.0 System peripheral: Toshiba America Info Systems SD TypA Controller (rev 05)
03:00.0 Ethernet controller: Belkin F5D7010 v7000 Wireless G Notebook Card [Realtek RTL8185] (rev 20)

I'm not sure what to make of all that, but one of them says SD ( 02:06.0 System peripheral: Toshiba America Info Systems SD TypA Controller (rev 05) ) so perhaps thats it, but I have no idea.

Sorry for such a late reply but i have been a bit busy recently. Thanks for your help, and thank you for telling me about lspci and how to use it :D
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