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04-29-2015, 02:56 PM   #1
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"Card is not formatted" message with 645z

I have owned the 645z for about 8 months now. A few weeks ago I got the following message for the first time when I turned the camera on: "Card is not formatted." I was very surprised, as I had been using the same formatted Sandisk Extreme Pro 64GB SD card in Slot1 for months and hadn't got this message before. So I reformatted the card and lost all the images on it (not a big deal as I always copy my images to the card in Slot2 when I shoot).

I must have shot less than 100 pictures over 2-3 weeks with the reformatted card and today, when I turned the camera on, again I see the same message as before: "card is not formatted."

Have some of you experienced the same issue with the 645z? I don't know what the problem could be. If the card were corrupt, it wouldn't have worked for 2-3 weeks I suppose. The latest firmware update is installed, but beyond that I have no clue what the problem could be. Actually, come to think of it, the first time I got the "card is not formatted" message was soon after I updated to the latest firmware. I used my Mac (a Mac problem?) to update the firmware using the SD card I mentioned above. Could this be related?

Any ideas or suggestions to get to the bottom of this?

Thanks.

04-29-2015, 03:30 PM   #2
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Cameras only perform logical (noy physical) formatting. Situations like this means the card has lost (corrupt) partition information. You can restore the logical AND physical partition info by doing a low level format. This is done in your computer by clearing the "use fast format" option under removable drives tools. Low level format takes several minutes and will definitely erase everything. After that, also do a logical format IN CAMERA.

it should clear your card of any errors.
04-29-2015, 04:09 PM   #3
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I would recommend uising SD Formatter rather than your computer OS to format the card. The reasons are given on the page linked below.

https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/
04-29-2015, 08:41 PM   #4
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I've had this happen when I opened the card on my Mac and didn't close it properly. The solution was to reinsert it in the Mac and then "eject" it prior to removing it from the computer.

04-29-2015, 08:54 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by owl Quote
I've had this happen when I opened the card on my Mac and didn't close it properly. The solution was to reinsert it in the Mac and then "eject" it prior to removing it from the computer.
This is the correct answer. I can confirm this for K-7, K-5, K-3 and the Q as well.
04-30-2015, 02:58 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by owl Quote
I've had this happen when I opened cards on my Mac and didn't close them properly. The solution was to reinsert it in the Mac and then "eject" it prior to removing it from the computer.
Yep, this had happened to me too a couple of times, if you just yank out the SD card without ejecting first, it'll sometimes corrupt the partition. You can still read data off the card on a computer, but the camera will think the card is corrupt, in which case you should format the card in-camera. This isn't limited to Pentax cameras either, sometimes this had happened on my Canon DSLRs too, but very rarely.

I don't know if the same might happen on a PC if you don't use the "safely remove device" feature, but as you see it's better to do so more often than not.
04-30-2015, 05:08 AM   #7
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Thanks, everyone! Problem solved.
04-30-2015, 08:00 AM   #8
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+1. This happened to me during the first week I owned the 645z. I didn't realize until now what the culprit was - which was when I pulled out SD card from the computer without ejecting properly. I too, lost my images, and a formatting the card in-camera fixed the issue. Has been fine ever since.

05-01-2015, 06:23 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by dShelly Quote
+1. This happened to me during the first week I owned the 645z. I didn't realize until now what the culprit was - which was when I pulled out SD card from the computer without ejecting properly. I too, lost my images, and a formatting the card in-camera fixed the issue. Has been fine ever since.
Don't think you should be losing any photos after putting it back in the computer and ejecting it properly. I've done this several times without losing photos.. not until I format my card in camera anyway...
05-01-2015, 07:29 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by Ron_Man Quote
Don't think you should be losing any photos after putting it back in the computer and ejecting it properly. I've done this several times without losing photos.. not until I format my card in camera anyway...
I don't know how else to explain it, but when that happens the photos disappear from the memory card and I have to format the card in order to reuse it. Has only happened once. I hope it doesn't happen again.
05-01-2015, 09:01 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by dShelly Quote
I don't know how else to explain it, but when that happens the photos disappear from the memory card and I have to format the card in order to reuse it. Has only happened once. I hope it doesn't happen again.
Even if the card shows up empty when you open it up on your computer, it doesn't always mean that anything is lost, you can use a data recovery application to dump all the raw data off the card if it comes to that. When a memory device gets corrupted, often times the list of files that's on the card gets lost and not the files themselves.

Memory and storage devices really don't like rewriting data unless they absolutely have to, so more often than not when you delete data all the system does is "mark" the files as though they're not there anymore, but won't actually overwrite the data until all the data has been filled up and it loops back to the beginning.
For instance, on a 32GB SD card I get 500+ shots with the Z, this means that I have to shoot through over 500 images before the camera overwrites the first photo that I deleted, no matter how many times I erase or format the card.
05-02-2015, 05:39 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kolor-Pikker Quote
Even if the card shows up empty when you open it up on your computer, it doesn't always mean that anything is lost, you can use a data recovery application to dump all the raw data off the card if it comes to that. When a memory device gets corrupted, often times the list of files that's on the card gets lost and not the files themselves.

Memory and storage devices really don't like rewriting data unless they absolutely have to, so more often than not when you delete data all the system does is "mark" the files as though they're not there anymore, but won't actually overwrite the data until all the data has been filled up and it loops back to the beginning.
For instance, on a 32GB SD card I get 500+ shots with the Z, this means that I have to shoot through over 500 images before the camera overwrites the first photo that I deleted, no matter how many times I erase or format the card.
I can confirm this behaviour and the solution. If the cards are simply pulled from the card reader in the computer (or if they are automatically ejected by Lightroom I think) the 645z gives the error. Putting back in the computer and ejecting normally works perfectly and the cards are recognised again. I am not certain that LR 6 is closing cards properly before ejecting them after import .... I am seeing this behaviour quite regularly now.

Now, I need to get to the bottom of why my 645z periodically, and apparently randomly, loses the date and time settings (and why did it "lose" one day to give me two times 1.5.2015). Maybe solidarity with the workers?

Ed

Last edited by constable; 05-02-2015 at 05:40 AM. Reason: typo corrected
05-05-2015, 06:55 AM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by BrunoL Quote
Thanks, everyone! Problem solved.
Bruno

Would you be so kind to explain to us how "Problem Solved"? For all of us who have not yet experienced this problem it would be kind to follow through from the problem to a logical end which solved your issue.

Did you use SD formatter?
Did you put the SD card back into computer and then eject it properly?
What else solved the problem?

Thanks in advance.
05-05-2015, 10:42 PM   #14
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For those who use a Mac, the procedure is simple.

You just need to put the card back in the card reader on the computer. Then eject it properly (drag it to the trash).
Voila.

There seems to be an intermittent issue with Lightroom 6 .... if you have it set up to automatically eject the card after import, it does not always seem to do it cleanly and sometimes the cards give the error when put back in camera. The above fix restores them to normal (and does not affect the content)

Hope this helps

Ed
04-08-2016, 12:48 PM   #15
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Thanks

The Card Formatter software fixed it nicely for me. Too bad I didn't read this post before I'd erased the images that were on the card as I tried to figure out the problem!
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