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CaptSunset
Posts: 140
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:55 pm

Qs about microSD card formatting

Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:34 pm

Beginner's instructions here recommended using the SDcard.org's formatter as a first step in prepping a Pi OS card.

I must've done a dozen of 'em before I read this on the info page at https://www.sdcard.org/downloads/formatter_4/

"The SD/SDHC/SDXC memory cards have a "Protected Area" on the card for the SD standard's security function. The SD Formatter does not format the "Protected Area". Please use appropriate application software or SD-compatible device that provides SD security function to format the "Protected Area" in the memory card. "

I know the NOOBS installer offers to create a small EXT4 partition, but don't think this is the same thing.
What is the function of this security area, and is it actually used by the Pi ?
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A second and slightly fuzzier question is regarding drive differences between SD cards & USB flash drives.
If I plug an extra microSD card into one of those USB adapters, and then into the Pi, is its 'signature' being converted somehow, or does it appear the same as the OS's microSD card ?

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GTR2Fan
Posts: 1601
Joined: Sun Feb 23, 2014 9:20 pm
Location: South East UK

Re: Qs about microSD card formatting

Wed Mar 16, 2016 10:42 pm

Data stored in the Protected Area is inaccessible through the SD card's file system...
http://computer.howstuffworks.com/secur ... cards3.htm

So the answer is no.
Pi2B Mini-PC/Media Centre: ARM=1GHz (+3), Core=500MHz, v3d=500MHz, h264=333MHz, RAM=DDR2-1200 (+6/+4/+4+schmoo). Sandisk Ultra HC-I 32GB microSD card on '50=100' OCed slot (42MB/s read) running Raspbian/KODI16, Seagate 3.5" 1.5TB HDD mass storage.

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liudr
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Joined: Sat Jun 01, 2013 12:11 am
Location: Central MN, USA
Contact: Website

Re: Qs about microSD card formatting

Thu Mar 17, 2016 2:28 am

If you insert a usb microsd card reader with an sd card in it, it gets mounted under /media/volume name of the sd card. Whatever is on that card appears in this folder. Say your card has a volume name of backup, then everything on its root folder appears in folder /media/backup
Arduino data loggers, user interface, printed circuit board designer since 2009, RPI 3B 2B 2B Zero Jessie, assembly/C/C++/java/python programmer since the 80's

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CaptSunset
Posts: 140
Joined: Fri Mar 20, 2015 2:55 pm

Re: Qs about microSD card formatting

Thu Mar 17, 2016 3:13 pm

Thanks for the getbacks, guys- just thinking about a real 'kids don't try this at home' idea...

Some time back, Ben Heck made a heck of an impression on me. :o
I'd just gotten my 1st Pi2B, and there he was on Youtube, hacking the big connectors off the Pi to make a slim point & shoot camera .
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iZ3ajIoNIkA

(Much further back, when people were working with early TTL IC's, some other guy's miniaturization technique was to epoxy the chips in a stack and then wire directly pin to pin.)

The new Pi3B has a press-fit SD card socket; so I was imagining making a stack of those, perhaps out of all the spare SD adapters I've accumulated! ;)

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